Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wednesday Weigh-In: 3/24/10 and I'm An Adult Now

Scale was at a non-Earth-shattering 144.4 lbs. Given I've been going back and forth between 147 and 142 during this last month's baby nugget drama, it doesn't seem all too significant.

So, moving on....

We've finally reached another adulthood milestone: getting life insurance. Yeah, we should have done this sooner, but prolonged adolescence pooh-poohs such mundane expenditures.

During our medical interviews, we were asked detailed questions about drug use, alcohol consumption, smoking, history of physical and mental illnesses and family health issues. Not a single question was asked about what we ate or the extent of our physical activity. Oddly, I was grilled about my weight loss, and not in a good way. My change in diet and exercise was not viewed positively, but as a cause for concern for their actuaries. Apparently, they must think I have a non-diagnosed pre-existing condition. Maybe cancer or a parasite.

Lesson in reality learned: A healthy change doesn't always earn you a gold star.

Friday, March 19, 2010

So Now What?

Looks like I'm over the mini-pregnancy hump.

I finished the last of the antibiotics and the 800 mg-of-motrin-every-6-hours regimen that was wreaking havoc on my stomach and bowels. My gut cramped when it was empty, and cramped up again when I did eat something. The pre-natal vitamins with the "magical" iron side effects are out of my system.

Prolonged bathroom episodes and other unmentionable symptoms of a uterus turning itself inside out and violently puking are, for the most part, gone. Par-tay!

Any resemblance between me and Ozzy are purely coincidental.

So what now?

Well, there's no point in spilling my emotional guts any longer here, is there? Nope. So, no more sobby blogging about what was and what coulda been and what was lost.* The best therapy?


A return to the old workout routine this week has proven to be quite therapeutic, albeit a little painful. On early Monday morning, I popped in Jillian's Fat Blast/Boost Metabolism DVD. This was the first time I did this 40-min. workout since January. And, whoa. My legs, abs and shoulders were screaming the next morning. Fuck the pain. The following day? Back to Level I of the 30 Day Shred! Apparently, riding the recumbent bike and doing moderate resistance band training while pregnant really didn't maintain certain muscles, which atrophied during that brief Jillian hiatus. Who knew?

While temporarily painful, this return to high-endurance workouts was the single best, kindest thing I've done for myself lately. To sweat again, grunt, curse, breathe and just feel alive really made a difference in my mindset. This is a comfort that I could never find from junk food, sweets, alcohol or afternoon TV. With three + years of constant physical fitness and healthy eatin' in my routine, the good habits have become so ingrained that my brain is wired now to take pleasure from them. This gives me hope as I go into middle-age. I'm in a place where being physically active is its own drug. It's what my body craves and needs, and I can ably provide. I am past the point of no return.

And that's that.

Back to the Wednesday Weigh-Ins and all that crap next week.

In the meantime, I've been noshing on some excellent cauliflower salad and lentil salad from our local health food market, Nature's Bin. Definitely my go-to snacks for this weekend! Sadly, they did not have their infamous broccoli slaw. *sniff*

*Ok. A few things before I let this whole pregnancy miscarriage thing go.

Thank you, thank you for the thoughtful comments. The last post was a hard one to write. I felt that I needed to address what had happened before I could move on to normal blogging. I struggled with whether I should disable comments because of the frank and, well, personal nature of what I was thinking and going through. I'm glad I didn't.

I'm not looking to start an abortion debate, but I have to get this off of my chest:

Being faced with an unplanned pregnancy was a new experience that I often thought about, but was never fully prepared for. Before, I was a staunch Pro-Choice supporter. And I still am, even more so.

This was a tough, extreme experience that many readers have gone through already. It is one thing to advocate terminating a pregnancy. It is quite another to have to deal with it first-hand. It is the most difficult crossroad I ever had to deal with. I respect what every woman and couple have gone through. This is not a casual decision. I can't imagine what it's like for a pregnant woman who, for instance, isn't in a solid relationship with a committed partner or who is pregnant as a result of abuse or incest. Therefore, I really cannot judge the decision of another woman in that position. It is a serious matter left for her alone to decide. She is dealing with complex issues, so being told what she decides may be morally "wrong" is cruel and pointless. She is going through enough already. Let her be.

It is not a matter of being pro-life or not. Frankly, what I had in me was not a "life" per se. It was a potential for life. What I learned from my doctor is that many pregnancies--as much as 50%--end in miscarriage. And in my case, that potential for life fizzled. It was not viable. Having to carry the bad pregnancy and wait for the miscarriage to "just happen " was more emotionally, physically and financially dreadful than just terminating it early, to wit:

1. Early term abortion. Less than $500. Minimal medical intervention and physical trauma. Greater psychological closure. Done and done.

2. Carrying a non-viable pregnancy for another 6 weeks. Five ultrasounds, doctor's visits (where doctor keeps encouraging us to hold on and keep going, despite bad ultrasound results and non-existent hormone blood work that I was still charged for) and lab costs are over $3,800.00. The emergency hospital treatment for the miscarriage alone is totaling $3,200.00 so far, and that was just for one evening. Medication and vitamins, about $150.00. Preliminary monetary total, about $7,150.00 for medical costs. Emotionally, an extreme rollercoaster where we accept, reject and accept again the pregnancy, and then are informed it ain't happening--something we had suspected from the beginning.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Life Is What Happens When You're Busy Blogging About Losing Weight

So what got me in a tizzy last month?

No, I didn't burn my law degree in a client-induced rage. My office partner didn't drive me to the brink. Yet. Married life is not in turmoil.

Rather, I managed to become pregnant.

We found out the last week of January, when that damn EPT stick wouldn't erase the "+" despite my repeated attempts to shake it like an Etch A Sketch. I have never been pregnant before; we never planned on having kids. In our 23 years together, we successfully dodged the baby bullet while enjoying the child-free life. We are almost 40. So, my initial reaction was to remove the parasite post haste.

There are little--if any--logical reasons to have a child in this post-industrial age. I don't need kids to help with family production. If I assigned a client's case to a 7 year-old, I'm fairly certain I'd lose my law license. Being the logical person that I am, it didn't make real sense to have a kid. The negatives certainly far outweighed the benefits.

But my perspective gradually changed over the next few weeks since this dropped (literally) in my lap. I wasn't prepared for the emotional trojan horse. Nor was Bob. Despite every logical reason against having a baby, we just couldn't bring ourselves to end it. Being faced with a pregnancy is stressful and emotional no matter which decision you make. Ending the pregnancy is stressful, but carries with it a powerful feeling of grim sadness. Keeping the baby is also pretty stressful, but the primary feeling with this option is one of hope. And hope won.

So, we accepted, and then embraced, the reality of becoming new parents just as Bob is turning 40 and I am turning 39. My head exploded at the thought that we would be almost 60 when the kid reached adulthood. We made baby plans. I took the prenatal vitamins and increased my intake of fruits, veggies and tons of yogurt and cheese. The idea of lactating kept me up at night.

I thought about what direction to go in terms of blogging. Do I start a new baby blog? Do I chronicle how I try to stay healthy while pregnant? I couldn't decide.

In the meantime, there were doctor visits. And ultra sounds. And more doctor visits. And more ultra sounds. And that's when the roller coaster really took us for a ride.

At 7 weeks pregnant, the ultrasound showed fetal development at 5 weeks. At 9 weeks, the ultrasound showed growth at only 6 weeks. There was a baby nugget (fetal pole, etc.), but no heartbeat.

This past weekend, I miscarried. It was emotionally wrenching, physically painful and just plain sickening.

Looking back, intuitively, I knew that this pregnancy wasn't going to be viable. I did not "feel" pregnant. No morning sickness. No hormone-induced mood changes. No changes in appetite. In the last week leading up to the miscarriage, I inexplicably lost almost 5 pounds since my last doctor's weigh-in 10 days before. Does that mean it was "meant to be?" No. Just bad chemistry. A series of random acts and events that happened to go down a pretty shitty path.

We're doing much better today, and will be even better tomorrow and the day after. That's the beauty of time and recovery...they work well together. It's sad to lose that potential of life, our shot at throwing our joint good looks, intelligence and cockiness into the collective gene pool. We'll try again--something I never thought we'd do. We may be successful, but if not, there are other ways to channel this new "potential" that has opened our eyes over the last couple of months. Maybe adopt or foster. More likely volunteer. Most likely hoard animals.

Eventually, I will get back to blogging again about health and fitness and all that. I'm thinking next week or the week after. And pray that I don't taint this blog with future details of our baby making. Or knitting puppy booties.