Week of July 24 – Symptoms Begin

I wasn’t sure if it was in my head or if I actually was feeling all of the following symptoms: very hungry when I woke up, heartburn (I kept asking Nevin what I ate that would have given me heartburn and after about the 5th time, I realized I may be pregnant nand), bad taste in my mouth, tingling/sore breasts, cramps/pains/twinges in lower abdomen, and crazy and vivid dreams. I kept taking tests (even though I knew there was a very slim chance I’d get a positive) because I had to know.

July 31 – Positive Test?

I took a test in the morning and it was negative. A few hours later, I went back into the bathroom and noticed a very faint positive had showed up. This exact same thing happened when I was pregnant with Spencer and the faint positive turned into a definite positive a few days later.

August 2 – BK3 is on the Way!

I decided to skip testing on Monday and wait until Tuesday (shocking, I know). I took a test very early in the morning and withing a couple of minutes, there was a definite positive.

August 19 – Morning Sickness Begins

Driving home from the beach I didn’t feel right. I thought it was lack of sleep, but the nausea, headache, exhaustion, heartburn, food and smell aversions, low fever, and horrible taste in my mouth have continued. No vomit yet. Let’s see if I can make it without vomiting at all. Who thinks I can do it??

August 23 – First Prenatal Appointment

I met with the nurse first who asked me a lot of questions about family health history and my own health history. Since my periods aren’t consistent every month, she sent me for a dating ultrasound. Much to my surprise, and different than Nolan and Spencer, my due date did not change. The baby was measuring 6 weeks, 4 days which is a due date of April 14, 2017. The tech noticed a subchorionic hematoma that the doctor would talk to me about, but she told me that it does not increase my chance of miscarriage at all. After that, I waited for the midwife. She was very late, but was very nice. She spent a lot of time with me and loved my labor story with Spencer. She told me I was every doctor’s dream patient and that she gives me an A++ for the day. She said I can continue running, but to just be careful if there is any bleeding. She is not worried about the subchorionic hematoma because it’s less than a cm and common, but she scheduled a 2nd ultrasound to make sure it isn’t getting larger. She said the ultrasound is more for the patients’ peace of mind than for the doctors. She also talked to me about the importance of eating grass-fed meat and organic fruits, veggies, eggs, and milk.

September 7 – 2nd Ultrasound

I thought about cancelling this appointment because of insurance reasons, but was concerned so I went even though we didn’t have insurance fully figured out. Turns out, this appointment was covered by the Pennsylvania Access Card and I paid nothing for the ultrasound. The ultrasound tech thought I was there for a dating ultrasound. I told her I was there to check on my subchorionic hemmorage, but she didn’t realize I had already had an ultrasound 2 weeks prior. She took lots of pictures and then basically told me everything about the SCH that I already knew. She asked what the doctor wanted from this ultrasound and I said that she wanted to make sure it didn’t get any bigger. She responded by saying that it is very hard to tell because my uterus got bigger and it’s fluid so it always moves and changes.

October 10 – Nurse Appointment & October 14 – 12 Week Check (2 weeks late) 

Since Nevin’s iFit insurance ended and we are now covered by Healthcare.gov, I was able to switch back to Mount Nittany OB/GYN. I met with the nurse on October 10 to go over any changes since my last baby. Not much has changed (health-wise at least), thankfully! Since they already had all of my information from Geisinger, Dr. Cherry just checked for the heartbeat. I’m thankful I was spared another pelvic exam and blood work. She had trouble finding the heartbeat at first and when she found it, she said, “Wow, this baby is very active. It’s doing somersaults in there!”. The heartbeat was in the 150s. I hope the baby settles down before April. They also said that my due date is April 13, which Geisinger told me they wouldn’t change it from the 14th, but I guess they did.IMG_4685 IMG_4687 IMG_4725 IMG_4726

October 11 – First Movement (13.5 weeks)

I was laying in bed with Nolan during nap and I felt the baby move. I had to Google it to see if it was possible that early on, and my research said that 2nd plus time moms can feel movement as early as 13 weeks, so I think I’m right. The feeling felt so familiar and brought back lots of memories of 2 boys kicking me nonstop. I can’t wait for more kicks and for all of my boys to feel them.

October 28 – 16 Week Check

I met Dr. Schuman for the first time and she was very nice and thorough. I really liked her. I (successfully) drank the glucose drink with the nurse and Dr. Schuman came in shortly after. She found the heartbeat right away and said it was 154. I then got my flu shot and waited for my blood draw at the lab.

November 21 – Anatomy Scan

Babi watched the boys while Nevin and I got to go to the anatomy scan alone which was so great that we could focus on the scan instead of keeping an eye on 2 little boys. The baby looks great! It was very relieving to hear this since we got not-so-good news at this point with Spencer. The baby was very active and the tech had a hard time getting some pictures because of how much he or she was moving. We did not find out the sex again and our tech had a great poker face so we have no idea if it’s a boy or a girl. She was able to get a great 3D picture of the face and he or she looks exactly like Spencer. We also got lots of pictures of the baby and the adorable feet, too. The baby weighs approximately 12 ounces and was measuring 20 weeks, 2 days instead of the 19 weeks, 4 days I thought I was. My new due date (changed by me, not the doctors) is April 9.

I told Dr. Hovick that I ran out of Unisom and was still sick. I stopped taking it for 3 days and was extremely nauseous and threw up once during those 3 days, He reassured me that it was okay to keep taking Unisom because it’s just an antihistamine. They recommend Unisom instead of Benadryl because it is better at controlling the nausea than Benadryl is. I also told him about the pain I had the night before the appointment that woke me up at 11:40. He told me it was a ligament stretching and because this is baby #3 and I’m small, everything is being pulled downward and it was completely normal.

At 21 weeks (I have been sick since 6 weeks), I still have the bitter taste in my mouth after basically everything I eat. Sweets and carbs still cause it to be the most intense and it is less intense and almost bearable with everything else. This taste sometimes makes me gag and vomit. I am rarely hungry and when I find something that I do want to eat, I barely eat it because foods just don’t taste right. However, I can eat more than white rice and plain bagels with cream cheese, so that is a big plus. I am able to drink bottled water, my morning cup of coffee, and iced tea. I am nauseous without the Unisom/B6 combo and still gag throughout the day. I vomit about once every week or 2. I am exhausted and just can’t get motivated to do much of anything. I am suffering from rhinitis of pregnancy again and the snot in my nasal passages makes me gag as well. I am constantly blowing my nose and trying not to vomit from the post nasal drip. I was hoping that all of this would be gone by this point (it was gone at this point with both boys), but now I’m setting smaller goals and hoping to feel better by Christmas.IMG_4810 IMG_4812 IMG_4895 IMG_4897

December 21 – 24 Week Check

When I walked in, the board said Dr. Hardyk was running 60 minutes behind and she was the only doctor on that side. It usually isn’t as long as the board says, but today it was! My appointment was at 3:40 & she walked in the exam room at 4:43. I enjoyed the alone time, but Nevin had a difficult time at home with the boys. She apologized profusely and said I have as much time of hers as I need. She’s my favorite doctor, so I let it slide this time.

I reported that I haven’t vomited since November 21 (1 month vomit free, yay!!!) and that I’m still taking Unisom and B6 every night for nausea. I weigh 127, so I have gained 17 pounds so far. BK3’s heartbeat was 150 and my blood pressure was 106/62. My next appointment will be my second glucose tolerance test. After that, I start going every 2 weeks. Although it’s been a rough pregnancy, it’s going by quickly!

My heartburn is intense. I have it every afternoon and evening and it prevents me from eating. I still don’t have much of an appetite and don’t eat nearly as much as I used to. The bad taste in my mouth is still there, but it’s less intense and I can usually ignore it (although it sometimes makes me gag at night and I have to sip water in order not to vomit). The nausea and vomiting is definitely kept at bay and after the holidays, I will try going without it again.

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January 17 – 28 Week Check

Nevin had off on the 16th because of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This morning was particularly crazy because we had a “winter weather advisory” due to icy conditions. I was nervous about Nevin’s drive down to Kennett Square and very thankful when he made it safely. Did I mention how both boys have trouble sleeping when Nevin is gone? I swear Spencer knows when Nevin is leaving the next morning and is up multiple times that night and is up for the day bright and early when he does leave. Anyways, I was running on limited amounts of sleep and found out that Nolan had a 2 hour delay which meant school began at 10:00 which also meant my plans for the morning were not unfolding as I had hoped. My appointment was at 9:30 and I knew it was going to be at least an hour because of the glucose test. I didn’t know how to put the car seats in her car, she didn’t feel comfortable driving my car in the ice, and I wasn’t sure that I would haven enough time to get Nolan after my appointment, drop him at school, and get back to the lab on time to get my blood drawn. If I missed that blood draw, I’d have to do it all over again and that would have made me extremely angry because I think this test is pointless to begin with in the first place. So, I told Nolan’s school that he would not be coming and Jana graciously watched them both for me during my appointment. While I was waiting to get my blood drawn, Jana texted and said that the home inspector showed up for the home inspection. Good thing I had already had my blood pressure taken because with all of the events of the morning, I’m sure it was sky high at that point. I immediately called Suzy and she corrected the situation (the inspector was a day early by mistake) quickly, thankfully.

I saw Dr. Patel for the first time this pregnancy. She “delivered” (and I use that in quotes because, let’s be honest, I pushed 1.5 times and he popped right out) Spencer. She had a student doctor with her (the first one I have encountered this pregnancy which is rare) and he found the heartbeat. It was around 145. My blood pressure was 114/60 which was just a bit elevated than what it normally is, but still good. I weighed 129 pounds, so I have gained 19 so far this pregnancy. I asked her about the vibrating feeling the baby makes and she didn’t seem worried. She said she’s worried about decreased movement and think it’s just hiccups. Well, this baby has hiccups frequently because I feel this vibrating/shaking feeling multiple times per day. It feels like the baby is having a seizure in there and it’s unsettling, but I guess I shouldn’t worry.

I got the pertussis vaccine (which actually made my arm very sore) and also got my 2nd glucose screening. The normal glucose range is 70-130 and mine was 83, so no 3 hour test for me, thankfully. They also gave me my registration paperwork for the hospital as well as the “what to do when you think you’re in labor” checklist. Receiving these made me a bit anxious because I am (most likely) not delivering this baby here and have no idea where I will be delivering this baby. But, hey, I’m not the first person to do this, right??

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January 22 – No Unisom

I decided that after almost 20 straight weeks of taking Unisom and B6 for my nausea, I’d try going without it again. Last time I tried going without it was January 10 & 11. On the first day, I was nauseous and had bad stomach pains around dinner time. On the second day, I vomited bile and coffee in the morning while getting the kids breakfast, was nauseous, and had stomach pains again. Since Nevin was out of town for work, I decided to continue taking it.

I am happy to report that I am able to function without Unisom and B6 as of 29 weeks pregnant. I get bouts of nausea in the morning and evening, but I have not vomited (knock on wood) since January 10. There have been some close calls, but I have been able to avoid it.

This has been the most difficult pregnancy out of the 3. I have been sick for the majority of my pregnancy, things don’t taste right, I barely eat, can barely drink, and am already having back pain and difficulty getting in and out of bed and up from the floor after playing with the boys. I can see the end in sight now and although I am sad this is probably my last time being pregnant and will miss feeling the baby move and watching my growing belly, I am excited for the nausea/vomiting, heartburn, and pain to end and meet my youngest prince or princess!

January 31 – 30 Week Check

I saw Dr. Hovick and his student doctor. The student asked me all of the usual questions and then Dr. Hovick came in to follow up. I reported that I’m still nauseous, mainly in the mornings and evenings, and that I stopped taking Unisom/B6 and I’m basically surviving and ready to have this baby and I want to slap all of the women who make it through pregnancy without feeling miserable (yes, I actually said that). I mentioned that maybe this is a girl because my pregnancy has been so different than my first 2 and he replied with, “All pregnancies are the same. All pregnancies are different.” My blood pressure was 98/64 & I weighed 130 pounds (gain of 20). The baby’s heart was 140s-150s.

February 15 – 32 Week Check

I met Dr. Brunner for the first time. I reported that I’m feeling the baby less (which I chalked up to me being so busy/stressed with moving and the baby getting bigger and having less room in there), but she told me that if I am concerned, I should eat and drink, lay on my side for 2 hours, and if I don’t feel 10 movements within those 2 hours then I should call. My blood pressure was 120/60 and my weight was 131 (gain of 21). The baby’s heart was 146. There was an increased level of protein in my urine, so she told me that if the same showed up in my urine at my next appointment, then I’d have to do a 24 hour urine collection. I had to do this with Nolan and it was so annoying because I had to deliver it on a Saturday so I had to go to the hospital and no one knew where I was supposed to go or what I was supposed to do with it until I ran into a very kind surgeon who helped me. I’m really hoping I don’t have increased protein at my next appointment.

The night before this appointment, I vomited in the shower multiple times. I just chalked it up to still suffering from morning sickness. When I went to this appointment, I had sinus pain in my face, a headache, and a cough. That afternoon, I came down with a fever that lasted 3 days. I was completely miserable when the Tylenol wore off. The only time I could function was when the Tylenol was working. I spent most of those 3 days in bed hoping that they boys weren’t destroying the house or each other too badly. Of course, we were moving out of our house on Brittany Drive in 4 days, so I had a lot to do to pack and get ready to move. After the fever, I came down with a horrible cough. I could barely walk and talk without coughing. I had trouble sleeping because of my cough (Robitussin helped a bit) and even pulled a muscle in my stomach on my left side of my baby bump. For about 2 weeks after the fever ended, I dealt with this cough, pain in that muscle when I coughed, and peeing myself when I coughed. I was worried about fever during pregnancy so the OB nurse recommended going to my PCP to rule out the flu. That was a complete waste of money and time. She was 30 minutes late and told me to take Motrin (everyone knows pregnant women can’t take Ibuprofen) and wrote me a script for cough medicine with codeine (again, everyone knows pregnant women shouldn’t take codeine). So, I continued with my cough drops, Tylenol, & Robitussin until the sickness ran its course.

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March 1 – 34 Week Check

I met with Dr. Patel again. I reported that I had been having cramping, contractions, and bloody cervical mucous. She suggested checking me for peace of mind and I’m glad she did. My cervix was still hard and I was dilated 1+ cm, to which she said women who have already had babies are usually always dilated, so I feel much better knowing these contractions aren’t doing anything like they were with Spencer 2 years ago. My blood pressure was 126/66 and I weighed 132 pounds (gain of 22). The baby’s heart was in the 150s.

All foods still taste strange and leave a horrible taste in my mouth. I am soooo ready for pizza to taste like pizza, coffee to taste delicious, ice cream to not leave a horrible taste in my mouth, and to just enjoy food/eating again. I really, really hope this goes away as soon as the baby is born. Some days I find I eat so much because the only time I don’t have that taste in my mouth is when I’m eating and I keep trying different things to get rid of the taste. I am so thirsty and every drink tastes horrible. All I drink is iced decaf tea or seltzer water. I crave sugary drinks, but regret drinking them because of the taste they leave in my mouth. I have a headache most days (though I don’t take any medicine for it) and have a hard time getting moving throughout the day. I usually don’t get motivated to do anything until after noon. The great news is that I have not vomited since January 11 and I stopped taking Unisom/B6 on January 22! This pregnancy has definitely been challenging (not only because of these symptoms, but also because of Nevin losing his job, selling our home, relocating, etc.) and has definitely been different than my first 2.

March 15 – 36 Week Check

I met with Dr. Brunner again. She was so kind when I spoke to her on Saturday about the car accident so I’m glad I got to meet with her in person this time.

I weighed 136 pounds (gain of 26…must have been all that junk I ate on Spring Break haha), my blood pressure was 128/70 (keeps going up, but doctors aren’t worried), and the baby’s heart rate was in the 140s. The baby had hiccups while she was checking the heart and she explained that the hiccups help develop the baby’s diaphragm. She felt around for the baby and said the baby is head down and said they’d check the position again next week.

I let her know that I did not have any of those symptoms she told me to look for after the car accident and I told her our current living situation. She was raised in Downingtown and her parents still live there. She said that when it appears that I am getting close to labor, the doctor will let me know so that I can tell Nevin to either work from home for a few days or begin his paternity leave a few days early. I really hope this works out because I don’t want Nevin to miss the birth (for many reasons). Hearing that from her makes me feel so much better because she was pretty confident that we’d be able to tell a few days in advance. I really hope she’s right! If not, I have decided that if he does miss the birth (history of precipitous labor!), I won’t tell anyone the sex of the baby until Nevin arrives and then he can share the sex with our family and friends so he can be involved with the birth in a way.

Next week I will have my Group B Strep test and my cervix will be checked for dilation. I just can’t believe that in about 2 weeks (give or take a couple of weeks) I will no longer be pregnant, we will be a family of 5, and we will have a newborn again! Although this pregnancy has been long, difficult, and stressful, I honestly cannot believe it’s almost over.

March 21 – 37 Week Check

This was my first time meeting with Dr. Doucette this pregnancy. My blood pressure was 120/80 and I weighed in at 137.6 pounds (gain of 27.6 and boy, do I feel those extra 27.6 pounds every time I walk and go up the stairs! I am out of breath & my legs hurt).

I told Dr. Doucette about the sharp, shooting pain at the base of my belly that came and went, the inability to sit, the numbness in my left butt cheek and leg, and the pressure that I felt from Wednesday, March 15 until Saturday, March 18. He said it was the baby’s position and he or she pressing on the nerve and it was normal (which I figured was the case, but didn’t want people mad at me for not asking!).

He measured my belly, said the baby’s head was down, and said the baby’s heartbeat was in the 140s. He did the Group B Strep test (I didn’t make it to the appointment to have this done when I was pregnant with Nolan so they did it when I arrived at the hospital) and asked if I wanted my cervix checked. I said yes because of Nevin being out of town. He said I was 4cm, but “still pretty thick” and recommended that Nevin begin staying around here. As he was walking out the door, the said, “see you in a week or earlier!”.

We decided that Nevin would stay in KSQ until Friday evening, as usuaul, and then next week he will work from home until the baby comes. I really hope this baby stays in until he gets home!

After my appointment, I felt very crampy and “off”. As I was trying to get the boys to bed, I began having contractions. They began around 8:45 and lasted until 11:00. As Jana and I were recording them and looking for patterns, I decided to have Nevin start driving here just in case this was real labor (because we all know how quickly Spencer came and I’m already 4cm). After 2 hours of recording the contractions, I noticed that they were not predictable and were not getting closer together and more intense (and eventually stopped). After Googling “false labor vs. real labor”, I realized this was false labor, so I had Nevin turn around and go back to DE. Luckily, I made it through the night with no contractions and just one bout of round ligament pain.

Contractions and pressure continued at random times throughout the week.

March 26 – Welcome to the World, Corbin Schaeffer King!

Sunday morning, the boys climbed into our bed and we hung out a bit before we went downstairs for breakfast. It was just like any other Sunday morning. Nevin and I even discussed if he would go to Kennett Square on Tuesday afternoon following my 38 week appointment and I assured him that he’d be fine until he returned here Friday night. We had fried eggs, bacon, and French toast and I ate so much because my appetite had been hearty the last few days (sign that labor is coming!).

Around 9:30am, I felt a contraction. It was definitely stronger than the contractions I had on Tuesday evening and I also felt pain in my lower back (which I had read meant real labor). We started to time them to determine if this was another episode of false labor (which, of course, I totally thought it was). My contractions were about 1 minute long and were coming every 4ish minutes. I heated up the heating pad for my back and continued to walk around the house to see if they were going to stop. Around 10:00am, I was ready to admit that this was the real thing, but the contractions started to slow down a bit and were now coming every 7ish minutes. So, I continued to walk around and interact with the boys (when I wasn’t on all fours working through a contraction). However, by 10:20am those bad boys were coming every 2ish minutes and since they were coming so quickly and so strongly, I knew this was the real deal. I kept having the urge to go to the bathroom and when I went for the second time, there was blood when I wiped. I sent Spencer to tell Nevin and then I called the doctor. That was at 10:29am and since I knew it was time, I didn’t wait for her to call me back (because it was a Sunday, I had to leave a message with the answering service and wait for Dr. Hardyk to call me back) before I started to prepare. In between contractions, I would pack something or get dressed (I was still in my jammies that didn’t fit and I refused to show up in them) or reassure the boys that I was okay and I was going to be fine, but this is how the baby has to come. Dr. Hardyk called me back at 10:37am and told me to come to the hospital. I was trying to make my way out the door (it takes a long time when you have to stop to work through contractions that are coming every 2ish minutes) when she called. We pulled out of the driveway at 10:44 and arrived at the hospital at 11:00am. While in the car, I couldn’t sit and got the urge to push. I focused on breathing and working through each contraction. When we pulled into the parking lot, there was a spot right up front so Nevin parked there. I couldn’t put my shoes on, so Nevin quickly put them on me so we could walk to the entrance. A volunteer who was leaving her shift saw me and got me a wheelchair (thankfully). I had to stop at the garbage can outside the entrance to work through a contraction, I stopped again on our way to the elevator and I stopped one more time as soon as we got through the doors of labor and delivery.

The nurse took off my clothes and I (slowly) got into bed. I was on all fours in bed and Dr. Hardyk said she could check my cervix in that position and I could even push in that position, but it would probably be better if I sat. I took my time and (finally) sat and she announced that I was “complete”. She told me that I could grab my legs, bear down, and push whenever I was ready. Well, grabbing my legs hurt so badly so I resisted. I kept saying it hurt and that I couldn’t grab my legs because it hurt too much and Dr. Hardyk kept yelling my name (Nevin said she was truly yelling at me) and kept telling me to grab my legs and push. I don’t know how I did it, but I felt a contraction, Nevin told me he could see the head, Dr. Hardyk broke my water (which released so much pressure and made the pain (a little) less, and I pushed and out he came! Nevin came right up to my left shoulder and said, “it’s a boy!” so I sat up and looked down (Corbin was laying right there because there was no time to get a bassinet ready for him) to see if he was joking because this pregnancy had been so different than my first 2, I was not expecting my 3rd boy. They wiped him down quickly and placed him on my chest where he took his first breath outside the womb after about 30 seconds. I delivered my placenta and both the doctor and nurse commented on how beautiful my placenta was. While Dr. Hardyk was sewing me up, the nurse was asking me questions for paperwork that should have been completed before delivery, but there was no time. They did hook me up to the heart rate monitor and contraction monitor, but they did not give me an IV this time. It was the complete opposite with Spencer; I did not have the monitors on, but they did give me and IV port as soon as I delivered him.

The next day the pediatric nurse said her favorite part was when Dr. Hardyk told Nevin to cut the cord and Nevin replied, “I don’t know if I can…I am shaking.” to which Dr. Hardyk responded, “I am too!”.