Monday, November 2, 2009

My bags are packed, I'm ready to go

Yes, in the words of John Denver - "my bags are packed, I'm ready to go." Definitely not leaving on a jet plane, but hoping to be heading to the Labor and Delivery floor at Balboa Hospital very soon! As of today, Diego has been incubating for 39 weeks and two days. Branden and I are so excited and anxious to meet this little one! The first eight and a half months of this pregnancy flew by, but now the days are crawling by as we wait for any sign of labor. So, while we wait, here is an update on our lives over the last couple of months...
* Because this is such a lengthy post, I condensed most photos into collages. If you want to see a collage up close, simply click on it and it will open up, bigger, in another window. Also, for some photos, there is a link "click HERE" to more photos, with captions. Enjoy!

August: Fun in the Sun
For us, August was a fun-filled and hectic month. We started the month with a visit from Branden's dad, Keith. It was also Colin's last weekend living in CA, so the three of them enjoyed a boy's weekend. They hit two Padres/Brewers baseball games, played a round of golf and ate lots of yummy food. I can only handle so much baseball, so I only tagged along to one game and let them enjoy their "man-time" the rest of the weekend.
The next weekend we were off to Chicago for Steph's wedding! Steph, Rachel and I lived together at Michigan for three years. It was wonderful to be a part of Steph's wedding weekend - it was a weekend full of love and laughter and we were so honored to be included. We started the weekend with fishing (the boys) and mani/pedis (the girls). From there, the girls headed to an intimate lunch in Steph's honor. Friday night was the rehearsal dinner at Gibson's steakhouse and then the wedding was held at Trump Tower on Saturday. It was a beautiful wedding and we are so happy for Steph and her new husband, Dusten!

On Sunday morning, after Steph's wedding, Branden and I took the train up to Milwaukee to see his family for the day, before heading back to San Diego. When we arrived at the Marty home, we could tell something was going on. Turns out, Kayla and Ellen (Branden's sister and sister-in-law) had planned a surprise baby shower for us!! (Dede and Keith claim no part in the surprise, but I find that very hard to believe!). It was such a special day - all of our Wisconsin friends came by, some we hadn't seen since our wedding five years ago. We were so touched by every one's thoughtfulness, generosity and efforts.

After our weekend in Chicago/Wisconsin, we headed back to San Diego for a quick work week. I was in San Francisco for meetings, so Branden painted Diego's room while I was out of the house (more pictures of that later). When I got home, we headed to Lake Arrowhead for the weekend with a few friends. We rented a house overlooking the lake and enjoyed a gorgeous summer weekend! Lake Arrowhead is beautiful and we can't wait to go back. It's a perfect getaway and it's only two hours from San Diego.

Since my days of travel were quickly coming to an end, we squeezed in one more trip that month. This time, we headed back to the Midwest for a baby shower in Michigan. My family threw us a great party and, since we had just seen most friends and family at my sister's wedding in July, it was fun for them to see my belly progress. I had sort of "popped" in the month since the wedding, so I was finally looking really pregnant, much to every one's delight. Again, we were so touched by every one's thoughtfulness, generosity and effort. My friends, Kirsten and Katie, flew in just for the weekend - Kir from DC and Katie from California! All in all, we felt surrounded by love and we are so thankful to have such wonderful friends and family!

September: The Last Hurrah

Of course, with my growing belly came an end to my travels. As I mentioned, though, Branden and I had decided to take one last trip before my midwife cut me off from flying. Earlier this year, I won a sales incentive trip for two - to SPAIN! It was all-expenses paid and neither of us had ever been, so with our midwife's blessing, we decided to go for it. I was pretty nervous once we actually got to Chicago and were boarding the flight to Madrid - what was I doing?! Would I really be able to travel comfortably for the next week?? At that point, there was no turning back, so Branden calmed my nerves and off we went! We spent week 32 of the pregnancy touring Northern Spain and we loved every minute of it. We were SO glad we went. I felt great and had no problems whatsoever. Here are a few photos, but if you want to see more, click HERE.

October: The Home Stretch
September flew by with our trip to Spain (and Branden's work travels - he was home for two or three days that month), so we were looking forward to a more mellow October. I wrapped up work; my last day was October 16. I'm looking forward to going back early next year, but for the time being, my mind was quickly shifting into baby mode and all I could think about was my to-do list at home. I still had so much to do, buy and prepare! Luckily, our wonderful friends took care of much of the "buying"...we were so blessed to have two baby showers here in San Diego in October. If you want to see more photos and read more about the celebrations, click HERE.
The month of October ended with some Halloween fun. We had secretly hoped that Diego would arrive before Halloween (what pregnant momma in her last weeks doesn't wish that?!), but here it is November 2nd and Diego still seems pretty content in the incubator. For now, we'll just enjoy some quiet time while we wait.
*Are you wondering who that adorable little baby is that we're holding in so many photos? That is Baby Taylor, born to our friends, Summer and Gregg, in September. We just love her and enjoy cuddling her while we wait for Diego. We think she is just the cutest little girl and Branden says that if Diego is a boy, he's talking to Gregg about an arranged marriage. :)

Diego Updates
Well, as I mentioned, we're into week 39 and Diego seems pretty content in his little home. He/she shows no signs of making an appearance anytime soon, so I'm just taking comfort in the fact that there is a 98% chance he or she will arrive in the next 19 days (although, really?! I can't even imagine being pregnant for another three weeks!). Our actual due date is November 8, so I'm hoping Diego is more like his or her daddy and will be early or at least punctual. That said, I think karma is a pretty powerful force and it would serve me right if this kiddo took after me and was late (since I am always late!).

Our little Scorpio has already proven to be a stubborn little guy (or gal). As Branden says, "stubborn like his momma (me)". As I say, "stubborn like his daddy." Either way, the kid is strong-willed. As Branden and I learned, 96% of babies get in to a "head-down" position by 32-34 weeks gestation. This gets them in position for birth before things get too tight to restrict movement into such a position. Well, of course, our little one was in that 4% of babies who decide to do things their own way. After I fell down the stairs at 35 weeks (just a little fall, no big deal!), we got an ultrasound to make sure all was well in the womb. It was then that we noticed that Diego was relaxing in an "oblique" position. He/she was sort of sideways, definitely not in an ideal position for birth. We didn't really think much about it, but when he/she hadn't turned by 37 weeks, our doula decided we should probably start taking some action. The traditional way to get a baby to turn is called an external cephalic version - I haven't had one and, from what I hear, I don't want to! In this, a doctor tries to manually turn the baby from the outside and it is, from what I hear, quite uncomfortable for both mom and baby. So, when our doula recommended trying a chiropractor first, we jumped at the chance. I had never been to one and was a bit skeptical, but the chiropractor had an 85% success rate of turning babies. Guess what? She got Diego to turn with just two adjustments and it was gentle and painless. Not only did she get Diego to turn, but she also relieved almost all of my hip, back and joint pain. I feel so much comfortable and, from the way Diego has been moving around, he is much more comfortable too. We are so thankful!!

Many of you have asked to see the belly, so here are the most recent photos. Before we go any further, may I be frank with you for a moment? If you are chatting with a pregnant lady, whether you know her or not, please do not tell her she looks "huge", "ready to pop" or ask if she's "sure there's not twins in there"? This may be surprising, but when you get pregnant, your feelings don't actually go away. If anything, you get more sensitive and such adjectives and comments do not make a pregnant girl feel any better about her changing body. On behalf of all the pregnant gals out there, I'm suggesting you either compliment her (word like "glowing" and "beautiful" are always appreciated) or just simply avoid commenting on her appearance. She'll really appreciate it and so will her husband (because no one likes to have to console an emotional, crying pregnant lady when she gets home). That said, here is the belly...

Since I finished up work and we've had a break from traveling, we finally got a chance to put together Diego's nursery. The rest of the furniture was delivered in early October, so things have really come together since then. We love how the room came out and the best part is that nearly everything in the room was made by, created by or found by a loved one. We chose an unorthodox color scheme (and didn't want a bumblebee theme), so we couldn't rely on traditional resources for nursery decor. If you want to read more about each piece in the room and where it came from, click HERE.
With that, I think I've finally got you all caught up on the Marty Party! If you've made it this far in the post, thanks! :) Hopefully our next post will not be "Belly Photos - Weeks 40, 41 and 42" and will, instead, be "Introducing...". If you want to make a guess at when he or she will arrive, click HERE.

Steph & Branden


Carrie said...

Just wanted to say that I think you look great and i wish you an easy delivery and healthy baby!

Casey B said...

Good work on the update Steph. I talked to Branden today for a bit, but I learned a lot more from your blog than I ever could have talking to him. No knock on him. It's just that we're both guys and I forget to ask a lot and he forgets to tell a lot. It's a guy thing. Anyway... thanks for the update! I'm looking forward to meeting Diego in the near future.

Lindsay said... look gorgeous as I remember you! I hope you have a wonderful and easy delivery...hang in there and rest up before little Diego comes. Motherhood is the best thing you can ever imagine! I am happy you included me on this blog and cant wait to see pics of your little ones! =)

fidele said...

best wishes, Steph. YOu look gorgeous. I'll wear your shoes (spectator heels) in your honor when you give birth. . . providing I find out!