16 weeks

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Baby is the size of an…avocado

Maternity clothes? shorts are all too tight, but I’m making due with rubber band tricks. getting creative with work clothes too, I refuse to buy stuff when I only have 5 more weeks to go. I did buy some winter maternity clothes for when we move

Stretch marks? nope

Sleep: excellent, falling asleep quickly, and mostly staying asleep

Best moment this month: Good month! We got our date to move – mid June, so just waiting to pick a house now. Prac has been good – a bit boring at times, which is frustrating, but when I’m actually doing stuff, it’s great. Archer’s loving school. ‘watching’ mum & st’ad compete in their first Ironman triathlon was also a huge highlight this week.

Worst moment this month: Had to sacrifice some prac hours last week because Archer’s been pretty sick. We’ve been to the doctors twice, and he spent the last 5 days sleeping, cuddling, and coughing. The extra sleep and cuddles have actually been nice, but we hate seeing him so miserable. He’s finally feeling better, but now J and I are beginning to show symptoms – ick!

Miss Anything? beer, my energy, and not feeling dizzy

Movement: it’s actually SUPER frustrating me that I haven’t felt any yet. By this time with Archer, I was starting to feel little movement (felt like popcorn popping). Everyone says you feel your second sooner, so I REALLY expected to have felt this one by now, but nope, nothing. Sometimes i feel like a pressure sort of moves up against one spot of my stomach, like it’s rubbing up against the walls, but I don’t know, I give up – you aren’t your brother, and I accept that.

Food cravings: had a hardcore taco craving the other day, it sort of just went away. Also really loving yoghurt! My appetite is definitely back!

Anything making you queasy or sick: not really

Labor Signs: no

Belly Button in or out? in, but shallower

Wedding rings on or off? on

Symptoms: SO dizzy. I would say 75% of my day is spent light headed. it’s a horrible feeling. It’s improved though, from the 100% of the day in the first trimester. My skin was also SO bad at the start of this month – painful, horrible acne, but that’s finally calmed down as well. All the crappy first tri stuff is starting to back off, and I’m starting to not absolutely hate being pregnant.

Mood: good, but stressed. there’s A LOT to do before we move, and I’m trying to juggle SO many things – prac, Archer, housework, moving, midwife/doctor appointments, scans, etc. Can’t wait to be able to check most of those things off the list in 5 weeks!

Pregnancy dreams? last night I know I had a nightmare, but now I can’t remember what it was, and I know it wasn’t baby related. Still haven’t really dreamt about the baby, since right before I got pregnant; I dreamt of a perfect baby girl with lots of brown hair and blue eyes – we’ll see if it was a premonition in approximately 24 weeks.

Looking forward to: MOVE, baby, MOVE! and prac being done & the move being finished.

Next appointment: gender/morphology scan on June 10th (unless I move it up, like I’m considering since that’s our last week here and it will be NUTS), and then a doc appointment to go over the results on the 12th.

Bonus pictures of sickie Archer in the bath the other morning – the light was really pretty :)

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12 Weeks

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Baby is the size of a…plum

Maternity clothes? my shorts are definitely tighter around the top now, and around the hips too, but still just wearing a bigger size.

Stretch marks? nope

Sleep: Good, except for having to wake up to pee multiple times a night, and not getting to ‘sleep in’ anymore because of work

Best moment this month: work! I’ve had a great first week. Lots of really interesting people, projects and conversations. Archer has also had good first days. He’s upset when I leave, which is hard, but he settles quickly and just asks about us throughout the day. He’d eating really well and having his normal 2 hour nap, so I’m super relieved.

Worst moment this month: I miss my friends, and I do obviously miss being with my guy during the day – it’s just so weird not knowing what he did, or what he looked like having his lunch or nap.

Miss Anything? beer, sweet nectar of the gods

Movement: I wish, I can’t wait! sometimes i think maybe I feel a little nudge.

Food cravings: balsamic vinegar, and specifically greekish salads (tomatoes, cucumber, fetta) with balsamic. also very very thirsty

Anything making you queasy or sick: asian, like sushi and rice paper rolls. just the thought makes my stomach roll

Labor Signs: no

Belly Button in or out? flat. this belly has just popped right out in the last day and a bit, there’s no hiding it now

Wedding rings on or off? on

Symptoms: I live on a knife edge of nausea and hunger; if I don’t eat as soon as baby wants (which is usually before i even feel hungry) I cross into nausea, dizziness, and crankiness.

Mood: good. it’s so great to be working again. I would have gone back to work part time in the last few months if it hadn’t been for prac coming up – didn’t seem logical to get a job just to have to take 3 months off. But I’m loving using that part of my brain, and getting to talk to people with similar passions and interests.

Pregnancy dreams? can’t remember any of them

Looking forward to: all of the exciting things coming up at work, and feeling baby move.

Next appointment: no idea, still waiting for my appointment to book in to the hospital

Easter

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I have very fond memories of Easter growing up; all the family would gather at my grandparent’s beautiful house (in America) and all of us cousins would crowd around card tables set up in the garage and dye our eggs; the smell of vinegar will always signal easter to me. We would hide inside, banished to a room without windows while our eggs (dyed and plastic, goodie-filled) were hidden, then the epic hunt would begin. For me, Easter is about being together as a family, and doing fun things for the kids, pretty much like every other holiday haha.

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Easter seems to just be chocolate here in Australia, which i actually find funny/odd because it’s SO hot still – the chocolate just melts, doesn’t it? Anyway, my grandparents and dad helped me to do Easter my way by sending egg dying supplies and plastic eggs.

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So yesterday we dyed {hardboiled} eggs – super fun. We coloured them with crayons, then left them to have a “sleep” in their colourful baths; “ecks seeping” says Archer. Then after Archer went to bed, I stuffed plastic eggs with stickers, m&m’s, and little plastic dragons (from one of his favourite movies – How to Train Your Dragon (the sequel, of course)).

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This morning, before it could get too hot, I threw them around the yard – he’s 2, no need to actually hide them – and released the kraken upon the yard. Should really apologise to the neighbours for Archer screaming “ecks!” “find ecks” etc at 8am. Archer had a ball, and became an expert at distinguishing the chocolate filled eggs from the much less exciting sticker/dragon eggs.

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Happy Easter everyone :)

8 Weeks

 

Written 10/03/2015

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Baby is the size of a…Raspberry

Maternity clothes? nope

Stretch marks? nope

Sleep: I’m so freaking exhausted, there’s not enough sleep in the world.

Best moment this week: talking to Archer about the “bee bee” is always fun

Miss Anything? energy, appetite

Movement: not yet, can’t wait!

Food cravings: I am SO hungry all the time, but literally nothing sounds good, or something does one second, then sounds revolting the next. I’ve been through a potato phase (dripping in butter) (that still sounds appetising), an orange phase, and currently I’m craving fried rice or tortilla chips with guacamole. Note: totally opposite to my sweets only appetite with Archer, this baby wants salt.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Salami, sushi, chocolate – yuck!

Labor Signs: no

Belly Button in or out? in

Wedding rings on or off? on

Symptoms: I have NO energy (makes parenting, studying, wife-ing pretty difficult), and I’m pretty frustrated that I’m unable to contribute or do what I usually do. I also feel nauseous/hungry, and dizzy almost all day. I also feel disgusting – flabby, my skin is breaking out horribly, yet feels grossly dry and oily at the same time, and my hair looks like I’ve bathed in oil within a day of washing it. My skin feels “dull” for lack of a better word, and no matter the scrubbing, continues to feel that way. All of this leads me to believe that this baby is a girl. Could I be wrong? Of course. Would I care? No, another boy would be as thrilling as a girl; I don’t care either way, I’m just leaning towards girl.

Mood: just frustrated by my lack of energy. I honestly don’t have much time to think about even being pregnant; between having a toddler, prac coming up (daycare, prac), moving, and having assignments, I’m too busy to be pregnant.

Pregnancy dreams? I’ve had a few. The baby is ALWAYS a girl.

Looking forward to: prac being over, the move being over, and being able to relax and enjoy being pregnant.

Next appointment: some time this week – need to get around to making that appointment.

Baby Beck Timeline

Written February 28, 2015

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Archer was confusing because all the home tests were negative, but I had all the symptoms, but once I had a blood test, and then scan, we knew everything pretty much right away. This baby is way more complicated…

I started to think I was pregnant when I was a week late, but I had no symptoms, and my cycle was never regular since getting my rod out in November, so we weren’t sure. I kept taking home tests, but they were negative, but I wasn’t surprised, since I never got one with Archer.

Wednesday 4 February: secretly went to get bloods taken – 1 week late. I took a home test first, but no line came up. I started to get a bit nauseous, but then super hungry, so I started to think it might actually be positive.

Friday 6 February: I told J I was getting bloods taken, but I was really getting the results. I took one home test before leaving for the doctor, but I couldn’t see anything. I was told that my BHCG level was 51, which is positive, but very low. The doctor was a bit hesitant, and the numbers didn’t really line up with my dates, so I left feeling pretty confused and discouraged; I wasn’t sure whether to tell J or not. We came home, and I looked at the test from that morning that was still out on the bench – there was a line! It was so exciting, because I never got that with Archer, and it also meant (to me) that my levels had risen since they were taken on wednesday – so I decided to tell J.

Saturday 7 February: We all headed back to the docs so I could get more bloods drawn.

Monday 9 February: After a weekend of increasing symptoms, I felt pretty confident going to get my results. They were 353, which was enough of an increase to confirm pregnancy, but they indicated I was only 2-3 weeks pregnant as opposed to the 5 that my dates indicated – pretty frustrating. I also mentioned some cramping/pains I was having in my right side, so the doc wanted to get a scan right away to rule out ectopic and get actual dates.

We headed next door to the imaging place, where I hammered water, and was repeatedly taken back to an U/S room to see if they could see anything. After an hour (trying to keep a toddler entertained), some tears (bladder- so full), and 3 attempts, the ultrasound lady finally said she couldn’t see anything but my uterus looked “ripe and juicy” – ewwww! I left feeling incredibly confused, and stressed.

Thursday 12 February: by the time we went back to the doc for results of my scan, I was feeling a lot better. I’d spent the last few days googling, and had discovered that an ultrasound before a BHCG of 1000 is VERY unlikely to be able to see anything, and my level wasn’t even half of that. My first scan with Archer happened at 6+1 with an HCG of over 35,000. So I felt happy when my doctor just suggested we continue to monitor my levels with bloods, until they were high enough to scan again. Confused why my dates are so off, but I’m trying to just ignore that, and wait.

Friday 13 February: more bloods.

Saturday 21 February: more bloods. also the start of “morning” sickness – dizzy, nauseous, miserable.

Monday 23 February: we got the results of the two blood tests, and baby is well and truly stuck in there now. 4,327 on the 13th, and 55,100 on the 21st!

Saturday 28 February: scan! Baby was visible straight away, and is measuring 6weeks 4 days! So we finally have dates – baby is due October 20. Heart was beating at 120bpm, and everything looked good. So exciting! Now we can tell everyone!

Dear Baby

Written 27/11/14, day after taking implanon out

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Sweet Baby Beck,

Daddy & I have decided that it’s time to add you to our family. 2015 will be a very busy year, but we couldn’t wait any longer – we want you here so badly!

It’s really scary deciding to be parents, and even more so the second time when you know what you’re getting yourself into. It’s such a huge responsibility – a little life – but it is also the most amazing gift. So while we’re scared, we’re also really excited! We already love you so much, and we can’t wait to help you grow into an amazing person.

Our family isn’t complete without you baby, and I hope you’re here with us soon.

Love, Mummy

Dear Baby

I wrote this in May, 2014

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Dear Baby,

I can’t publish this now, or even probably anytime soon, but I wanted to write it now so that you know that I’m thinking about you.

There are some things (my prac, and Daddy’s transfer) that need to happen before we can add you to our family, but that doesn’t stop me from thinking about you, for aching for you. I know that our family isn’t complete, and I can’t wait until we are able to add you.

Your brother is such a joy, and I know that you will be different, but just as fantastic, and I can’t wait to meet you and see what those differences are. Your brother loves babies, and every time that I see him kiss his baby doll, or stare at a baby, I think of you, and I know that he will be a great big brother.

I wonder what you will look like – will you be bald & blue-eyed like your brother, or will you be the monkey that I thought he was going to be!?

You haven’t been created yet, but I wanted you to know that you are thought of, longed for, and above all, loved.

Love, Mummy

2015 – the year of chaos

I’ve known that 2015 was going to be our most insane year yet for a few months now, but I haven’t been able to share. Now I can…

2015 will begin with about 2 months of full time prac for me, daycare for Archer, and normal work for J; it will end with a new baby being added to our family; and in between we will move across the country! Like I said, busy.

So prac; well tuesday I start at Anglicare. I’m really excited to be working with them, mainly with their youth mental health branch. The ladies I’ll be working with are lovely, and while I’m really nervous (haven’t worked in like 3 years, new field, still pregnancy sickish), I’m mostly really excited. Archer is my biggest stress, but I’ve gotten him into an amazing daycare centre, with lovely people, and we’ve been going to visit a couple of times a week for the last few weeks to get him comfortable with it. Whenever you ask Archer about school, the first thing he says is “mummy coming” or “mummy back” (as in mummy comes back); he sobs when I leave, which is hard, but I’m sure he’ll adjust and I know he’ll love it once he does.

Moving…well we’re being posted to Albury/Wodonga in June/July (don’t have exact dates yet). J has transferred to the medic corps to start his journey to becoming a nurse/paramedic; I’m so excited for him, and proud of him! Even though there are things (mostly people) we will miss from Darwin, we are CRAZY excited about moving to A/W. We hear nothing but amazing things; it’s close to major cities (Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra) where we have friends, and lots of fun things to do, plus its surrounded by amazing nature (we want to start camping) and even snow! It’s also close enough to drive home, and it has real winter! (although ask me how I feel about that when we move there right in the middle of that freezing cold winter).

Finally, Baby! I’ve been writing some posts to/about the baby for months, even before it was created, so I’ll be posting those. We’re about 11/12 weeks at the moment (the scans and my dates and such all say different things). I’ve felt pretty crap this time around, but it’s hopefully starting to get better. I’m really sad that I won’t get to have it here in Darwin, since A/W doesn’t offer the same services (home birth, birth centre) as Darwin, but I’m just focusing on the fact that Archer was a hospital birth and it was fantastic.

And there you have it…I’ll leave you with some pictures of our squirmy little fetus that Archer likened to a fish.

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Two!

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Archer Beck,

You are two, and I am in shock. How can you only be two!? Haven’t you been here forever? I mean I can’t remember a time without you; I keep thinking back to things that happened before you were born, and I find myself wondering, “but where was Archer? What did I do with Archer?”, and then I realise that you didn’t exist yet. Your existence is the start of everything for me. Life before you was nice and all, but life post-Archer is glorious; bright, shiny, vibrant, vivid. You are the oomph, the zing, the pizzaz that makes my life extraordinary. We love you little boy.

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~Eat~

You HATE olives. That’s it, you’ll eat anything else, but try coming at you with an olive and you’d think it was a taser or a spider, the way you freak out.

Your one true love is milk. Dear god, if I allowed you to have milk every time you asked for it, I might as well hook you up to some sort of milk-IV, with a continuous drip-drip of milky goodness. It’s not just the milk of the cow that you go ape over either, you’re still utterly (see what I did there?) obsessed with mama milk too. You ask for “boo-bee” all the time, sometimes every 5 minutes (seriously). While I no longer yearn for the wean, constant boob attachment is a bit too much – need.space.now! I’m happy to continue on, and let you decide when you’re ready to stop (the original goal, which i assumed would lead us to 1-year-old weaning – HA!), just cool it on the frequency, dude!

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~Sleep~

Hallelujah! I finally have a child that sleeps! Full nights (7pm-7am), and wonderful naps (2 hours starting around 11am). With everything you’re about to go through (daycare, moving, etc), I hope your sleeping continues to be good.

~Speak~

Oh.my.goodness! Talking is my very favourite thing. It is this stage which has led to me declaring 2 as my favourite age thus far (something I’ve said at pretty much every stage along the way). You are so freaking hilarious. Your little voice, and the way you latch onto something we may have said weeks ago – be still my heart! For example…2 weeks ago, Nanny told you that she was going to the beach and she would see dolphins, and maybe eat some starfish with sauce (We should have known then that she was nuts haha). Well, now every time we FaceTime with her, you ask “Nanny dolphins sauce?”.

Your language seems to get better when you want something. Yesterday you asked me “Mummy put on mee-meets (Despicable Me 2 – a movie you love) please!?” – a full sentence – because I said no to your first, simple request for “mee-meets”.

Your language has just EXPLODED in the last few months. Sentences, words I didn’t even know you’d heard before. It’s insane. It means that I can’t keep a list of your new words though, because there are just too many. Rest assured though, that your pronunciations are the cutest things in the entire world, and will forever be imprinted on my heart (or on my iPhone because I take videos of you speaking).

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~Loves~

TV: not thrilled about this, but it’s kind of a necessary evil. Do I wish that I was the sort of mother (and you were the sort of child) who would do learning activities all day long, frolic outside, and create things out of toilet paper rolls, sure! But this mama has assignments, and hasn’t been feeling her best, so out comes nanny-tv, Mummy’s little helper. You continue to favour sequels of movies – the current favourite being Despicable Me 2, which you call Mee-Meet (minions).

Outside: It’s too hot in Darwin to enjoy outside as much as you (and I) would like. I cannot wait to move somewhere with a more hospitable outdoor climate! I promise we will celebrate the end of dripping sweat humidity, and skin broiling sun by being outside way more.

Mummy: You have become quite clingy and obsessed with me in the last few weeks – right in time for prac – eek!. You want to make sure “mummy coming?” everywhere, and you won’t venture too far away from my side. While I love this, the timing is so so very very bad, and I hope that you can find your independence soon, so that daycare doesn’t scar you for life.

~Hates~

Honestly, you don’t hate much (besides olives). You do dislike when it’s bright outside, and request a towel to cover your head if you have to lay down for a nappy to swimmers change.

You have your normal toddler tantrums when your evil plans are foiled, or you’re frustrated, but mostly you’re a talkative, happy, easygoing little guy (as long as Mummy is within arms reach. When I’m not, you hate everything).

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~Signature Moves~

Hiding: When something is upsetting you, or frustrating you, or making you angry, you sit very still, put your hands over your eyes and just breath. I have seen you meditate like this for a solid 5 minutes before.

“Readyyy!”: You stop, wind up, yell “readyyyy!” and then take off running. You do this out, and around the house (where you do laps around our house).

Pretending: You now pretend, which I mean, c’mon, CRAZY cute! Your ‘guys’ go for walks, where they hold hands, you “feesh” for turtles off the side of your cot with your dummy, and you pretend to phone people. I love your budding imagination, so so so much.

Whisper: if we’ve said no to something you want, you’ll sometimes try again, but this time you get right in our face and whisper the request, while nodding your head as if to trick our brain into giving you your desired answer – pure jedi mind tricks.

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Archer Beck, I can’t believe you’re two! You are my favourite two year old in all the world. I will look back on this year with a happy mama heart. You are delightful, joyous, hilarious, and magical. We love you more than you will ever understand (or at least until you have your own children – hello future grand babies!).

Love, Mummy



traditional pre-semester meltdown…

It’s that time of year again! A new semester is starting, and I’m wondering what they hell I’ve gotten myself into. WHY am I doing this to myself!?

This semester is prac – so along with assignments, which I have to complete before starting my hours, I have 500 hours I need to do in a social work position. This gets extra complicated when you throw Archer in the mix – daycare, for the first time. My mama heart keeps picturing Archer screaming as I leave him for another whole day at daycare – not helping the stress levels.

We’re slowly getting there; the childcare rebates are all arranged, I have two daycares which can take him in time, so I just have to pick which one fits with my prac best, and emails have been sent to an organisation. There’s still an ever growing list of things to do, but we’ll get there (right?), I mean it’s always worked out before. Eek! This will pass, and in 6 months, I’ll be past this place, but for now I’m contemplating quitting (like I do every semester), and pleading with God to come up with some magic alternative to prac, assignments, and daycare.