Thursday, October 30, 2008

Clothes minded

I just had to go through Em's entire wardrobe because of a recent discovery with Carter's clothing line. Apparently its Fall 07 line of tagless clothing (with solid square lables stamped on the fabric instead of separate cloth tags sewn on) has been linked to some nasty rashes on kids. Great. Just what any parent, especially new ones like us, need to worry about. The line isn't supposed to cause rashes on EVERY kid, but who wants to take the chance? And supposedly kids who are predisposed to rashes from those tagless pieces may get rashes from other tagless clothing lines, but Carter's seems to be the biggest culprit.

Thankfully, out of the large collection of Carter's clothing in her wardrobe, only six pieces were from the "bad line." The company is not doing a "recall" but supposedly will accept all the clothing from that line and provide a refund. I'm waiting to hear back from its customer service department to find out how to make that happen.

So, if you're a parent, you might want to go through your kids' clothes.

And if you're a grandparent (hi Mom and Merridee!) or are buying baby gifts for friends/family, keep this in mind.

Good tags:
Bad tags:
More info can be found on the Carter's site here.

"Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility." - Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The latest and greatest

- Em is likely going through a typical growth spurt (happens 7-10 days, 2-3 weeks, 4-6 weeks, 3 months, 4 months, 6 months and 9 months -- more or less), so she's been having even more cluster feeds (constant feedings, starting an hour apart, which means a lot of boob time if you keep in mind that feedings typically last about a half hour, 45 minutes). Luckily my big boobs are serving me well and keeping up with Em's needs.

- She had her first bath yesterday! She seemed ok with it up until we had to wash her hair.
First bath

- Our baby girl is suffering through some baby acne, which is perfectly normal but still a bit sad. I took her to the pediatrician to make sure it wasn't a rash. (It's not.) Sadly she'll probably have it for a few more weeks. She's still super cute, with or without it. (New pics on Flickr, if you're a friend/family.)

- We took her for her first stroll on the nearby beach bike/walk path yesterday. It was nice to get out in the fresh air and to get a bit of a workout, although Em was passed out the entire time.

- I slipped away for a couple hours today to get a grossly needed pedicure and manicure. My hands and feet feel sooooo much better. Next up? A massage and facial, hopefully sooner rather than later.

- Other than the above, it's baby business as usual around here. I'm hoping to venture out of the house a bit more this week with Em, so we'll see how she does. I'm also looking forward to introducing Em to some visitors over the next few days. We're continuing to learn our way around this whole parenthood thing, which isn't easy as things are constantly changing, but we're having fun.

"Jack, you have issues. I'm trying to understand why you run around with a rubber boob strapped to your chest. I mean, were you ever breastfed? My guess is no." - Roz Focker, Meet the Fockers

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Touching base

Long time, no blog, I know. I think I'm going to do a "day in the life of a new mom" post soon, but the short version is: a little sleep, a little crying, wet/dirty diapers, lots of eating - repeat.

Yesterday I bought a used swing from Craigslist. It got great reviews on Babies R Us, and I liked the idea of saving some money (and one less swing eventually ending up in a landfill). I found one in perfect condition basically for half price, and not far from our place at all. It also matches the vibrating chair we got at our shower. And Em seems to really enjoy it -- she's passed out in it now. (Although I must admit that seeing her so content and so angelic while sleeping just makes me want to pick her up and gobble her up - nom, nom, nom!)

I was going to take Em for her first shopping trip yesterday to 3rd Street Promenade. I thought that mid weekday would be perfect as there wouldn't be any crowds and I could get some walking in. When I got to the Promenade, though, I realized that it was the popular Farmer's Market day, so the parking structures were full. Not to mention there was some crazy construction going on, and some random old man honked at me and called me a bad driver, which was totally not the case. If I didn't have my beautiful baby girl in the backseat, I would have considered flipping him off, but my mom side reminded me that people can be nuts so I was better off just ignoring him. With all of that going on, I postponed the shopping trip for another time.

Last night Em's umbilical chord stump fell off, much to the horror of Brent, who discovered it when he went to check her diaper. So now we can transition from sponge baths to full-on baths. We'll see about giving Em her first real one tonight.

Today I took her for a stroll to the nearby coffee shop, only to discover that despite the calender that says it's officially fall, it was more like the surface of the sun outside. Today's high in our normally comfortable beach town is 94 degrees! I cut my walk short because it was too hot for me, so I imagine it was waaay hot for Em.

Ok, and since I started this entry earlier today, I just tried the Moby Wrap that Jami gave me at my shower. I was really looking forward to putting it to good use, but actually using it is even more awesome than I expected! My hands are free to do all sorts of stuff yet keep Em close to me. She's still passed out, which is always great. Brent is excited to try it for himself, too. (To hold Em, that is. Brent's a little too big for me to carry around in it.)

And to end this somewhat random post, here's an extra random bit for ya - every time Em wakes up crying in the middle of the night, usually to be fed, for half a second I think that I forgot to put her back in the Pack N Play where she sleeps and think that I fell asleep with her in the bed while doing the previous feeding. I'm extra scared of falling asleep while nursing her because 1) I'm afraid she'll roll off of the Boppy in my lap where I have her propped up and tumble onto the floor or 2) I'll somehow roll over and crush her. This happens at least once a night, and I'm looking forward to a time when I'll stop giving myself panic attacks over it.

"If you didn't wake me up, I might've had a nightmare and it would've woke me up. Then, I could've woke you up and we would both be awake. But since you did wake me up, I can't wake up from this nightmare so i can't wake you up! So we're both still asleep." - Little Dog, 2 Stupid Dogs

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Happy due date!

It still blows my mind that for the past two weeks, I could have totally still been pregnant. Today is Em's "official" due date. She's also exactly two weeks old.

In the past two weeks I've learned:

- holding a baby isn't nearly as intimidating as it used to be
- to get excited about counting wet/dirty diapers
- that if I get at least one nap in during the day, I can handle sleepless nights
- that there's nothing as sweet as Em's yawns and Em's sneezes
- the first thing Em may have inherited from me is my habit of sneezing in threes
- that Brent is hilarious when he changes her diapers. He's constantly amused by what he finds.
- going to bed at 10 p.m. is now "late" for me
- that our baby girl sleeps like an angel, cries like the devil and eats like a mad woman
- to schedule nice, hot, long showers when Brent is home
- that three hours of uninterrupted sleep is now considered blissful
- that "Mommy Mode" means putting aside my fear of spiders and random bugs in order to kill them in the name of "don't you dare get near my beautiful daughter"
- that baby smiles melt my heart
- that life will never be the same

"Oh, forgive me for not being one of those anorexic babies from the diaper commercials." - Stewie, Family Guy

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Em's birth story

**Feel free to skip this post if childbirth stories aren't your cup of tea, but note that the winner of "Guess Em's Birthday" is announced at the end**

On Sunday, Oct. 5, we spent the morning/early afternoon finishing up the very last of our to-do list for condo preparations. A carpet guy cleaned our bedroom carpet and our couches while Brent tried to replace some light fixtures in our entryway and hallway. I had just finished taking a shower and brought in the last loads of laundry. I was sitting in the nursery, folding clothes while the carpet and couches dried. I felt a tiny gush, which stopped me in my tracks.

I was stunned. Only 5-10% of women experience natural water breaking, and I think that's an even smaller percentage for first-time moms. Plus, I was two weeks early.

I went out to the entryway, where Brent was working on a light fixture.

"Um, I think my water just broke."

He joked, "Can I finish installing this fixture first?"

I seemed to recall my doctor saying that if my water broke, then come directly to the hospital. But I called just to double-check. While I waited for a return call from my doc, I went into the bathroom, where even more clear liquid came out in a larger gush. I went from hesitant that my water broke to downright sure. The doc called back and told me to come in even though I wasn't having any contractions yet.

Brent took a quick shower while I gathered up stuff for my hospital bag. Everything for me and the baby was out and organized, just not in the suitcase yet. When I had been shopping and gathering items for the hospital bag, I asked Brent what kind of snacks he wanted to have, based on the suggestion of our childbirth class instructor. "I'll be fine," he had told me. Well, as we headed out the door he realized that he probably should have some sort of snack with him. He grabbed the closest thing he could find - half a chocolate bundt cake that his mom had made for us the night before. I had shoved it into a giant Ziploc, so it looked less cake-like and more science experiment-like. Later on, during my delivery and recovery, the hospital staff would catch a glimpse of the bag and ask in horror, "What IS that?" As tasty as it was, it really looked hideous all mushed in a bag.

As we drove to the hospital, Brent noted that if I had to pick a time to go into labor and deal with no traffic, that was it. That Sunday afternoon the 10 freeway was virtually empty. And while we were in the car, Brent, who had been going back and forth on Em's name, finally said to me, "Ok, I like that name. Let's go with that."

We arrived at the hospital around 3:30, checked in and then were brought to a room where I changed into a gown. They hooked me up to a fetal heart rate monitor as well as a monitor for my contractions, which hadn't started happening yet. As we waited there, various residents, nurses and doctors came by to ask how I was doing, what had happened at home, etc. They conducted some sort of chemical test to see if my water had broken, even though I told them that it indeed had. Two of the three tests came back as saying my water hadn't broken, but then I started having contractions. They believed me then.

I definitely used the techniques from my childbirth class to breathe and count through the contractions. Brent was impressed when peeps would come in to talk to me and I'd give them the "hold on" sign while I dealt with the contraction. Brent would also watch the monitor and could tell when I was about to have a contraction as the line would move up. He tried to talk me through them, but usually he'd just sit there quietly while I tried to relax.

A resident came in and did an internal to see how dilated I was. I was at 3 centimeters, out of the necessary 10 centimeters before pushing starts. The contractions were getting more and more painful, so I asked about getting the epidural. The resident tried to convince me to walk around first to help with the dilation, but the pain was getting worse and worse so I turned that advice down. They also wanted to give me pitocin to assist in dilation, but decided to give me the epidural first. They requested the anesthesiologist for me. She came in, had me sit up and curve my back, all the while my contractions were getting more and more intense. She had some issues getting the epidural in just right, so she had another anesthesiologist come in to assist. He wasn't as kid-gloved as she was, so I winced a bit at his technique. Finally he was done and the epidural started to take affect.

Shortly after the epidural was given, a nurse, I think, came in to check my dilation. I think we were all amazed when they said I was already at 9 cm! Seriously, from the time it took me to get the epidural, I had gone from 3 to 9 cms!

The resident went to tell my doc, who didn't seem to believe her at first. "Wait, the first-time mom in Room 18?!? She's ALREADY 9 cms?!? With NO pitocin???" So they wheeled me into the delivery room.

In that room they taught me how to push, which if you haven't had the pleasure of going through, basically they tell you to push like you're dealing with the world's most stubborn poop. A deep breath in and out, then a deep breath in that you hold till the count of 10 while pushing, then a quick release of breath before another breath in that you hold till 10.

I did this for about an hour and a half, with very few breaks between. I was getting tired.

My doc would pop in every now and then to see how I was doing. I wasn't surprised that she wasn't there the entire time, but that's because I had been prepped by friends that the docs usually just show up to catch the baby. It's the RNs who really work with you through the process. (At least that was the case at our hospital.) Our nurse, by the way, was awesome. She had no patience for the residents, whom she likened to vultures, so it was entertaining to watch her roll her eyes each time they came in to try to tell me something she'd already covered with me. And she told Brent and me that she liked us, so we were happy to be on her good side.

After pushing and pushing with some progress but not as much as we all would have liked, the doc came in and felt around. That's when she told me that Em was "sunny side-up," also known as "posterior." So instead of facing my left or right leg, she was basically facing my belly button. That might have been why my contractions were so freakin' painful - her spine was rubbing against mine.

This is when the doc, who could tell I was tired from my hard work pushing, offered to use the vacuum to assist in the delivery. She told me that it didn't mean I'd have to stop pushing, but it would help. I agreed. Next thing I know I'm being told to push, but this time after what was probably only two big pushes, out came Em at 11:14 p.m.! I kept my eyes closed during those last two pushes as I was concentrating with all my might, but I did catch a glimpse of Em when they lifted her up. And Lord help me, I cried like I never cried before. It was like her escape from the womb unclogged some emotions in me that I had never experienced. I was sobbing -- all sobs of joy -- but sobs nonetheless. I think our nurse was worried until I explained that they were happy tears.

They weighed and measured Em while Brent watched over her and my doc delivered my placenta, which I didn't feel at all. Then she sewed me up (I tore a bit, but not much at all, to my doc's surprise, for having a vacuum delivery). Brent brought Em to me and I cried some more. I think he cried some, too.

We were congratulated from the ton of staff who magically appeared in my delivery room. When Brent asked our nurse about it later, she explained that they had put out a call for staff assistance when they decided to use the vacuum, and because I was the ONLY person delivering at that time, ALL available staff came in. Brent later told me that he was cracking up when I was pushing and random people he had never seen were standing there suddenly going, "Come on, Nanette! You can do it!"

All in all, we were there for about 8 hours before Em arrived. It all seemed to move so much more quickly, though. I'm happy there were no big complications and that she arrived into this world a healthy baby!

It seemed like I'd never remember what it was like to NOT be pregnant; now I can't remember what it's like NOT to be a mom!

And it appears as though the big winner for "Guess Em's Birthday" contest is KE! She guessed Oct. 6. Thanks, everyone, who joined in the fun!

"If a baby were president, there would be no taxes, there would be no war." - Michael, The Office

Monday, October 13, 2008

They call her Mellow Yellow

Em's levels went back down to an acceptable level, so we got to bring her home last night! We'll see how her levels are tomorrow when we go to the pediatrician. She's been ravenous, and I've been more than happy to give her as much as she wants to hopefully continue to flush the bilirubin out.

Thanks, everyone, for your well wishes and comments, not only about the jaundice thing but your overall comments, congrats and excitement for Em's arrival! It's quite fun to have an extensive blogosphere network of real and virtual friends excited on our behalf.

Things are going well. Breastfeeding has been fine, although there have been a few issues I was having problem resolving so today I met with a lactation consultant at The Pump Station. (Yup, that's what it's called and it's alllll about breastfeeding.) I met with a consultant a couple times in the hospital, but my technique needed some fine tuning once I got home and was on my own. Today's consultant was awesome. She addressed all my questions, and all subsequent feedings have been great!

She also explained that Em, born at 38 weeks, is considered a near-term baby, who apparently are notorious for being sleepy and slow eaters (some of the reasons that caused me to seek out a lactation consultant). They're also at-risk for jaundice. She said that Em will catch up to where she should be by four weeks old. In the meantime, we'll just keep powering through with the feedings and watch her jaundice levels.

Anyhow, Brent goes back to work tomorrow. My mom is coming back to help out Wednesday. She was here for a couple days after Em's arrival, cooking up Filipino feast after Filipino feast -- just what this new mom ordered!

"Hey, look at me, I'm a baby! I’m one of those babies from 'Look Who’s Talking.' What am I thinking? (Laughs) Look at all those staplers! What's a stapler? — I don't even know, I'm a baby! Hey, Mom, I'm thirsty! I'm thirsty, Mama! I want some milk. And you know where milk comes from! Breasts." - Michael, The Office

Saturday, October 11, 2008

"He had yellow eyes! So, help me, God! Yellow eyes!"

I'll tell my entire birth story in the near future, but for this entry's purposes, it's important to know that they used a vacuum to assist in Em's delivery. My pushing wasn't progressing as much as they'd hoped, and they learned that Em was facing up (or "sunny side up" as the doc referred to her) instead of to the ideal left or right side. That likely contributed to my pushing issues.

The vacuum caused Em to have a bit of a cone head, which is perfectly normal and has since subsided a good 95%, if I had to estimate. It also caused a big bruise on the top of her head, hidden mostly by her gobs of hair. As the bruise heals itself, it has contributed greatly, if not entirely, to a case of jaundice. (Jaundice can also be linked to breastfeeding, as well as other causes, but in our case it's likely from the vacuum bruise.)

When we took her for her first pediatric check-up on Thursday, they saw a tinge of yellow in her skin and tested her blood to determine the jaundice level. It was higher than they'd like but nothing to freak out about, so they had us come in yesterday for another draw. It had elevated just a bit further, so we did another draw this morning. This afternoon they called back, said the levels had risen again and asked that we re-admit Em to the hospital for at least an overnight stay under special lights to help break up the bilirubin, the chemical in blood responsible for the yellow in bruises as they heal (and the yellow tint noticeable with jaundice).

A hospital stay is usually a third treatment option, after indirect sunlight through our own house windows and then a home visit with special lights are exhausted. In our case, they decided not to waste time with the second option (and we didn't have much time to exhaust the first) and skipped to the third option.

After I freaked out a little bit -- ok, a lot -- at the thought of our little girl having ANY kind of medical issue, albeit on a tiny, tiny scale compared to most of the other kids here in the pediatric ward, I'm actually happy they're skipping the second step and nipping this thing in the bud.

We'll be here at least tonight and potentially tomorrow, depending on how Em's body breaks down the billirubin via her super special light bed. I told her to pretend she's on an island vacation, much like her mom and dad's Hawaiian honeymoon. This is after telling her to pretend that the foot prick they had to do to collect the blood was like a pedicure. I doubt she's playing along, although she does look super cute spread out in her little faux tanning bed. Lucky for me she passes out from breast milk bliss after each feeding, making it that much easier to get her to chill in the light bed.

And Brent says she looks like she's going to a Kanye West rave with her little white eye shades to block the UV light. (Brent and I have obviously kept up a good sense of humor about this whole thing, knowing that she's going to be just fine.)

Oh, I just received a phone call from a flower delivery guy who, I swear to God, sounded JUST LIKE the talking stain in the Tide To Go Pen commercials. (Brent and I love those commercials - so hilarious!) I couldn't understand him so he had to have his boss call me for instructions on what to do with the flowers since we're not at home to receive them. So, if the flowers are from friends or family members who are reading this, thanks in advance and I'm sure we'll get to enjoy them soon with our non-yellow daughter.

"Scott Farkus! What a rotten name! There he stood, between us and the alley. Scut Farkus staring out at us with his yellow eyes. He had yellow eyes! So, help me, God! Yellow eyes!" - Ralphie, A Christmas Story

Thursday, October 09, 2008

She's heeeeeeere

As my loving husband revealed, Em Dash made an early arrival!

And as he noted, we haven't decided if we'll disclose her name here. So for now I'm going to refer to her as "Em." We also haven't decided how we'll handle photos of her, too. I think they'll at least go on Flickr for friends and family only, but not quite sure about all access on my blog. Gotta think about safety, privacy, etc.

Ok, with some of your potential immediate questions out of the way, on with my first post-delivery blog post!

We're all doing quite well. Em is absolutely gorgeous. Still too early to tell whose features she's inherited, especially as her beautiful little face seems to change from hour to hour as she grows. But she's a definite blend of her mommy and daddy.

We're getting settled with sleeping, feeding and just everyday survival. And we spend a lot of time staring at her, awestruck. She's perfection personified.

And don't get me started on seeing Brent as a daddy. I think he was born to be a father. I love to watch him with her, watching the sparkle in his eye as he falls more and more in love with her.

Admittedly, this post is all over the place as there's so much going on in my head, heart and soul. But just know that we're hanging in there, loving this wild, wild ride.

"Sometimes the laughter in mothering is the recognition of the ironies and absurdities. Sometime, though, it's just pure, unthinking delight." - Barbara Schapiro

Monday, October 06, 2008

Thoughts on something huge - (literally and figuratively/earlier and later than expected)

This is not Nanette. This is Brent: the husband who's been (lovingly) harassed by Nanette with repeated requests to do a guest blog post on Nanette's blog. Common conversation at home over the last five months:

Nanette: When are you going to do a post for my blog?
Brent: What?
Nanette: ...about how excited you are to be a dad!
Brent: I am very excited. I will.
Nanette: Thank you. Your nonspecific commitment to perform the requested action had the desired effect of momentarily placating me and I will now return to watching an inane reality show about [babies/many babies/people who act like babies].

And I really was down with the idea of the guest post, but I also had a lot of time left before the birth. Shouldn't a reflection on pending fatherhood be written at the point of greatest anticipation and as the due date neared, wouldn't anticipation increase dramatically? I decided that waiting until the last possible moment would guarantee a monumental outpouring of truth and emotion. With an October 19th due date, I had plenty of time to whip myself into a father-to-be frenzy. The plan was sound - as of Sunday morning, I had nearly two weeks left to write something epic!

The plan was flawed.

Apparently due dates are just an "estimate."

Babies have no respect for other people's deadlines.

As of Sunday night, I am a dad!

Our stunning baby girl (aka Em Dash) was born at 11:14 pm on October 5th. Hailing from LA and tipping the tiny scale at 7 pounds, 15 ounces, she enjoys tiny hats and completely catching her parents off guard. Fortunately, her decision to get life started many days ahead of schedule has had no ill effect on mother nor daughter and both are healthy and happy.

Here's where my ridiculous procrastination pays off. Pre-dad hypothesis has nothing on the actual dad scenario. I could have said I was excited about her birth - gross understatement. It's the single most amazing thing I've ever seen. I might have guessed that my daughter would be beautiful. Wrong - she's completely stunning. Most importantly, I wouldn't have been able to explain the enormity of this event. I would have come up short. Even when my daugther is crying with ferocity and doing unspeakable things to a diaper, I'm overwhelmed by how much I already love her. There aren't proper words, so I'm glad I didn't try.

I'm also guessing that while I would have said how much I love Nanette, I wouldn't have given Nanette adequate props. I saw her give birth with my own eyes and my brain still can't quite process the event. Other than a case of pregnancy cankles that will live on in myth and legend, my wife was a pillar of pregnancy poise. That is up to and including the point yesterday when Nanette somewhat matter of factly announced that her water had likely broken and that immediate advancement toward a hospital was prudent and necessary. She'll be along later for a more detailed baby-having account that will probably include the words "bundt cake," "overhead lighting" "tarry," "exhausted" and "stupendous."

Hugs and kisses,

(PS - in this crazy Interweb-enabled age, I'm compelled to make the following request - we aren't sure when or if we'll publicly unveil our baby girl's name. Please refrain from mentioning her name here in comments on this blog or anywhere else online. Thanks!)

Friday, October 03, 2008

Luck of the draw

I was going to start off by saying that I never win anything, but then I remembered the time I won tickets to see Stone Temple Pilots at the Santa Barbara Bowl. And the time I won free Subway sandwiches. And when I was in kindergarten and won a city-wide art contest because of a piece I made when our teacher had us drop marbles in paint and swirl them around a cardboard box to make "art." Oh, and that time I "won" a free week membership at the local gym, which turned out to be just a scam to get me to come here their little sales pitch.

So, occasionally I do win stuff, but I can't remember the last time I won something this awesome. I entered a drawing from one of my favorite sites, Project Nursery, to celebrate the launch of its new forum. The prize package is an awesome $1,000 worth of fun stuff for the nursery, baby and mom.

Imagine my surprise when I checked the site yesterday to see that I WON! Check out everything coming my way!

Shabby Chic’s Bohemian Pink crib bedding from Layla Grace ($470 value)

Sleepsack and Blanket by SoMi baby ($150 value)

Choice of one 8×8 or 8×10 ready-to-frame personalized wall print by Lillybean Designs ($15 value)

Bebe au Lait nursing covers in “Shrine Aqua” & “Pink Parfait,” (I almost bought a nursing cover the other day at Target! So glad I didn't! I get to use these awesome ones instead!), set of three Bebe au Lait burp cloths, SIMPLE organic nursing cover in “Willow” ($136 value)

Complimentary online room color consultation from Lesley David Design’s ($50 value)

Felt Flower Clip, Head Band & Large Flower by Sally’s Clippies, ($20 value)

Two Bibzees “Baby Ink” Bib Sets ($54 value)

Two Madison Paker Toddler Tees ($60 value)

Complimentary Custom Inspiration Board for Nursery, Child’s room or Playroom by Little Apple Design , ($50 value)

I know! I can hardly believe it myself! I was going to do a little post and photo of me enjoying all the prizes, but with Em Dash's arrival potentially so close, I didn't know when I'd get to it so I'm giving my shoutout to the prize sponsors now.


Maybe my contest karma is coming back to me. Don't forget to submit your guesses!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Due what you want

As inspired by justJENN's contest when she had her now 3-year-old, I'm giving you all an opportunity to turn my birthing pain into your financial gain!

Here's what you need to do:

Correctly guess Em Dash's birth date and time to win a $20 Amazon gift certificate. The winner will be whomever guesses closest to her actual arrival. And as a potential tie-breaker, throw in your guesses for her weight and length.

A few things to know:
- Due date is Oct. 19
- Em Dash has measured a week ahead at a lot of our ultrasounds
- I, myself, was born a week early
- I've had Braxton Hicks contractions (also known as "practice contractions" for months now)
- I might have had my first *real* contraction this afternoon. It was just for a few seconds, but it was the first time the tightness was accompanied by any amount of pain.
- Em Dash, as of last week when I was 36 weeks along, was approximately 7 lbs., 2 oz.
- At my check-up yesterday, my fundal height was 39-40 cm, at least 2 cm larger than it should have been. The doc said that it doesn't have any correlation to when I'll likely deliver; rather it's just further indication that I'm probably going to have a big baby.
- They haven't done an internal yet to see if I'm dilated at all

You can submit your guesses in the comments up until my next check-up, which is next Wed. at 9:30 a.m.

"[why he doesn't celebrate his birthday] It's just the way I was raised. My parents focused on celebrating achievements, and being expelled from a birth canal was not considered one of them." - Sheldon, Big Bang Theory