Pregnancy Update!

As I exit week 16 and enter week 17, my baby has just been DOUBLE confirmed as a girl. Our DNA testing came back as being a girl, and today’s ultrasound was pretty clear that the DNA testing was correct.

So today was the date I got to meet my high risk doctor. If you don’t know me, I am 35, which makes me “advanced maternal age”, and I have had pre-eclampsia TWICE, and preterm births in both of my labors so far. So the doctors watch me a little more closely. So that means more scans and blood tests. This is my 4th ultrasound, I will get another in one month for a full anatomy scan.

Here is a shot from my ultrasound today. Baby’s head is on the left, and she has her arms and hands near her face. Growth wise they said she looks to be 7 oz so far and her brain, heart and kidneys look great. My doctors have been very supportive of our choice to get the COVID-19 vaccine and were excited I have already gotten my 1st shot earlier this month.

We picked out a name for our baby girl a few weeks ago and have been calling her the name and my daughter LOVES it. So far my mother and a few close friends know, but we won’t be announcing the name fully until baby girl is born in July/August.

We have a ton of baby clothes, so we are focusing on getting other items for baby girl. I do have a registry on Amazon and Target under my name. So for friends and family, if you would like to help us prepare and welcome our baby girl to the family, here are the links.

TARGET BABY REGISTRY- tgt.gifts/hamlet

AMAZON BABY REGISTRY- https://www.amazon.com/baby-reg/donna-hamlet-benjamin-hamlet-august-2021-albuquerque/1RXBPX66C3VNY

We won’t be having a formal baby shower due to COVID-19, I am still not sure I will have an online one yet either. So this may be my baby shower, but its okay 🙂 As long as my baby is healthy we are good.

My doctor is watching my Blood Pressure though due to my past and we are just trying to take it easy. I really hope I don’t get preeclampsia in this pregnancy. It’s very stressful but I will keep you all up to date!

COVID Vaccination during Pregnancy

This topic is very controversial for so many reasons. And here are my views on the vaccine so far.

I am 15 weeks pregnant this week. And my husband and I looked into the vaccines and I discussed my options with my TWO doctors. I see a regular OBGYN for a visit every month and I also see a high risk Dr due to my age (over 35) and my previous pregnancy issues of preterm labor and pre-eclampsia. I see both my doctors every month, one at the clinic and the other is at a hospital.

I tend to get sick very easily and we were worried about me getting exposed to COVID while going to all of my visits, and as some of you know, if you are high risk you see the doctor a lot more often. I have also had pneumonia in my past, and tend to go into labor early. So we decided getting the vaccine would be my best route to avoid any serious illness.

This is a personal decision and if you are pregnant or have an opinion, please consider that you have rights over YOUR body, so make the choice for yourself. Don’t tell others what to do with their bodies.

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That being said, I decided to get my vaccine yesterday. I have been offered it by my work AND by the NM DOH a few times already but my husband and I decided to wait until the 2nd trimester before making any decisions about a vaccine.

I ended up getting the Moderna vaccine , since that is what my DOH in NM was offering this round. But Donna, you aren’t 75 or older… how did YOU get the vaccine. Well, pregnancy is actually on the list of HIGH RISK items that qualify people for shots. That’s right.

I could also get the shot through my work, which is a hospital system. So I honestly could have gotten the shot in December but I wanted to wait. It was a personal choice and I waited until I felt comfortable. I was nervous to get the shot but over all I believe we made the right choice.

How did my body react to the Moderna COVID vaccine? Here were my symptoms: Reminder I am 35 and pregnant. And not everyone reacts the same.

At the shot clinic I got the shot and sat down for 15 minutes per their suggestion. While sitting I felt pretty good. Once I got home I started to feel some joint pain about 1-2 hours later. But only in my LEFT arm and HIP. I did get the shot on my LEFT side, so it made sense. The joint pain got so bad I was limping so I laid down. I started to get a head ache 3-4 hours into the shot. So I took a tylenol. About 6-8 hours into my shot I started feeling like I was coming down with something, I felt fatigued earlier in the day and took a nap, I felt chilled, and ended up going to bed early. At that time I noticed how much my shot site hurt, I could not lay on my left arm anymore.

Today I woke up and felt GREAT. The shot site is still sore but I feel fine. I don’t feel chilled, or any pains otherwise.

I am a bit nervous about the second shot since I heard more people react to THAT shot, so my plan is to not work the week of my 2nd shot just in case. I reported to my doctors that I did get my shot and they were excited for me. I have told pretty much all of my friends and some family about the shot but I am keeping it off my FB bc I don’t want to deal with the backlash of some anti-vax family right now. Many people suggested I didn’t care about my baby, but that’s just stuff they say. I care about this baby. We just found out this week that it’s a girl. I will see her on ultrasound again on the 22nd of this month. I know there are risks into getting a vaccine that has not been tested in pregnant humans, but I also know there are risks with getting COVID while pregnant as well.

And if you do your research, you can make that decision for yourself if you should get the vaccine or not. If I was not pregnant, I would have gotten it sooner. But I had to consider the little person inside of me first this time around. I am thankful for the vaccine and I am hoping that it helps us get back to a point where we can start to get our lives back.

I will keep you all updated on my progress during this pregnancy and when I get my next shot. I know some of you may be moms as well, and you may be waiting to see how things go for other pregnant women before getting a shot yourself and that’s OKAY. I get it. I was scared too. But after research we decided to go with it.

Baby Names

Baby Hamlet is growing, has a good heart beat and is healthy so far. I haven’t really started to think of names yet. We actually have a family name if its a boy for the first name, but we still need a middle name no matter what. And if it’s a girl, we have no solid name picked out yet. So how do you choose a baby name?

So 13 years ago when I was pregnant with my son, once I found out the gender, his dad and I tossed around names. He suggested the middle name Raymond, because it was a family name and all the men had it. So I said, okay if you get to choose the middle name AND the baby gets your last name, I get to choose the first name, and he agreed as long as it wasn’t anything stupid. Welp, I am a millennial, and I grew up with the comic strip, Calvin and Hobbes. So my son’s first name is Calvin. And YES my ex knows that his son is named after a comic.

With my daughter, 3 years ago, we went through so many name possibilities. We looked up names, we looked into family names. And there were TWO names I liked in the end, but we did pick out a name BEFORE birth. I ultimately chose the first name, Lillian. While my husband suggested his grandma’s middle name, Margarete for the middle name. The two names went together well enough and oddly enough, I ended up having to give birth 6 weeks early….on his grandma’s birthday. So she shares her great grandma’s name and DOB.

This time around we will be finding out the gender via blood tests AND ultrasound, but since I am over 35 I was offered a more in depth screening and they asked if I wanted to know the gender. I responded with a “heck yes!” and they drew my blood yesterday for the test in office. I will be getting the blood results back in 7-10 days. So I can think of names then. I hate to waste my time on names for a baby when I don’t know the gender. We of course will have the doctor double check the gender at the anatomy exam in March, but it will be nice to sort of know. And yes, they can make mistakes.

If the baby is a boy, we have a very simple name ( I am not announcing it here yet), and I will get to choose the middle name since the first name is actually a family name for my husband’s family. But if it’s a girl, we have the entire name to work with. I am trying to incorporate my grandmother’s name somehow but it honestly depends on the first name we choose.

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How did my visit go yesterday? Why was I nervous?

Well I am high risk. I am over the age of 35, I have had preterm labor in my past pregnancy, I have had pre-eclampsia twice so far, and I have been having spotting recently, which made me worry about the baby’s well being.

What does a high risk dr do?

So in my case I got to speak to a genetic dr, who ran labs and is looking into any possibilities of my baby having any chromosomal abnormalities. She is the one who will call me with my results in 7-10 days and the gender. She offered exams that will look into the baby more in depth, I only took the non-invasive tests. My husband and I will keep the baby no matter the problem. We just want to be informed.

Why have I had 3 ultrasounds so far and I am only 14 weeks along?

Welp, my dr did an initial ultrasound at 8 weeks bc I had spotting and she wanted to see a healthy little heart beat. She did a second one at 12 weeks because she couldn’t find the heart beat on the doppler, but she saw one on the ultrasound. And now that I am at the high risk dr, they do their own exam and ultrasound. Now because of everything i have been through, it looks like I MIGHT get an ultrasound every 3 weeks at the high risk physician. I had one yesterday and they said in 3 weeks I will get another, and then at week 20 I will get another. This seems to go along the lines of how things went with my 2nd child. I ended up getting 7-8 ultrasounds with Lillian. I know moms who are higher risk who get them weekly. So every 3-4 weeks isn’t bad. And yes they get boring.

They do a lot of measuring random parts of your body, they check out my cervix and other fun parts. And half the time you have a very wiggly baby that won’t stay still long enough for a good photo.

Am I thankful?

Yes I am thankful to have this team of doctors to look over me. Last time they caught my preeclampsia early. In my first it was caught very late and I almost died. In my second I had time to do testing, get shots for the baby’s lungs and even pass a kidney stone while admitted in the hospital over the weekend, it was a long weekend.

They decided to get Lillian out of me before I ended up having such severe issues like last time.

What happened so bad during my first pregnancy?

So my pre-eclampsia was caught maybe around 35-36 weeks, honestly I can’t remember the exact week it was 13 years ago. And my nurse took my blood pressure and immediately told me to lay down. She ran out of the room and grabbed the dr. I over heard them in the hallway saying I was going to have to go to the hospital and that I would be having that baby ASAP.

That was all fine and dandy, I had been on bedrest because I kept going INTO labor. So I was ready to be done.

What I didn’t expect was to go into kidney failure DURING labor. Once I had the baby my kidneys started working better and they stupidly let me be released 2 days later with out checking my legs.

NO ONE CHECKED MY LEGS.

This is important.

I went home, my baby was in NICU so he was released a day or two later. I got him home and THAT night my chest started hurting. I handed my baby over to my bf at the time and said “I need to lay down”, I had experience with kids and he didn’t so he was confused…. I called my mom later and explained how mu ch my chest hurt. She told me to call the ER. I did. They said it was because I needed to breast feed.

I reminded them that I knew the difference between my CHEST and my BREAST.

I called my mom again and she said she would meet me in the ER. I dropped my BF and my baby boy at my mom’s house and my brother helped care for my son because my Ex sure as heck didn’t know what to do. We were young. He was stupid. I will leave it at that.

When I got the ER, my blood pressure was high, and after they took my vitals the person in triage put me on a bed and hooked me up to a defibrillator. He said my heart was failing… and I had too much fluid in my body, AND I had pneumonia. Fun times…

So I was readmitted to the hospital, to the SICU and I stayed a few days recovering from my kidney failure, my heart problem and my pneumonia, all caused bc they did not check my legs…which were SWOLLEN. They would have seen that I had too much fluid, they could have caught it. But I remember the nurse didn’t even show me how to clean my wounds from giving birth, so many steps were missed. Yes I could have sued the hospital now a days, but honestly at the time I was young, they did get be back to healthy and I am okay now. But omg, if this happened NOW to me, right now, I would be a totally different person.

Always tell the doctors if something feels wrong. And don’t stop. I was young and didn’t speak up. I thought it was “normal” to have swelling after birth. Women complain about swollen legs all the time during pregnancy and don’t realize there is a healthy cut off… and if you can push your finger into your leg and it leaves an INDENT…. you need to go see a DR.

In my second pregnancy it went nothing like that, I healed pretty well, my doctors checked me out really well. I did have a horrible UTI that took over a week to get over but that was better than almost dying.

Okay now that we got off topic, if you have any name suggestions for me, please leave them in the comments or @ me on twitter with them. I pretty much live on twitter.

Pregnant during a pandemic

I have had a few friends already give birth during the pandemic. It is not ideal, being pregnant during a health crisis. My husband is not allowed to go to any office visits and I have to pretty much go it alone. This is my 3rd child so I am used to the steps to take, but it was nice to have my husband there to support me during my last pregnancy 3 years ago.

How does the pandemic change things? Well for one, my husband does not allow me to go food shopping. The numbers in New Mexico started raising around the time I got pregnant, and we were put into another lock down the week I found out. My own grandmother passed away from COVID 5 days before I found out. If I want something, my husband gets it for me, of course its like sending an door dasher for specific items you want, things aren’t always perfect. I order a lot of stuff online now a days.

I think a lot of my friends may have had it harder during the beginning of lockdown last year. COVID was so …. new. They didn’t know how it affected people and hospitals were not accepting patients for certain things, and many doctors offices were closed. Thankfully all of mine are still accepting patients for in person visits. I just have to go alone. I can video tape my ultrasound apparently, and I can still record the heartbeat on my monthly check ups for my husband.

I was asking my physician about how things have changed with COVID at my hospital, so I could get an idea of what to expect. One disappointment was the hospital stopped doing the pain relief I wanted to try, which was a gas. I have always had an epidural and I have back pains from my last one 3 years ago. I wanted to try to do this labor with out an epidural, and I heard my hospital did the gas for delivering moms, but due to COVID it is no longer an option. Pain relief shots don’t help me because I process the meds too fast. So I may get a doula. But I need to find out if I can have a doula AND my husband in the room. I know my hospital said ONE person can be with me, but does that include a doula ?

We are looking into getting the COVID shot from Pfizer for me soon, my one OBGYN is for it and I am just passing it by my high risk doctor. Yes I have two doctors. Not only am I over the age of 35 (which puts me in the Advanced maternal age category), but I have had 2 preemie babies, due to preeclampsia, and I have gone into preterm labor with my 1st born, I also had other complications that were smaller, but over all it gets me in to the high risk doctors for more monitoring.

What else is different about this pregnancy than my other two? A lot. With my first I had no morning sickness. With my second I had very very mild morning sickness in the evenings. And with this one I have lost 10 lbs because I couldn’t eat or stand the smell of basic food. I have had horrible head aches this time around and over all I just feel worse. It could be my “advanced age”. I know all pregnancies can be different, and its okay. I just hope I don’t get preeclampsia this time, but the odds are against me.

My children both want this baby to be a girl. I don’t know the exact date I will find out the gender, but I believe I will be getting a blood test soon that may reveal it. If not I will be getting the ultrasound around March that should show me. Why does the gender matter? Honestly, the only thing I care about is the clothes. I have BOXES of clothes from my 3 year old, if its a girl I will use those. If it’s a boy, I will be giving those clothes away and buying new or used clothes. I am not horribly picky. I may donate my daughter’s clothes though anyways once I am done for sure with them, I know there are lots of people who need clothes. We can afford all new clothes. When I was a mom the first time, I only bought used clothes and it saved me so much money.

Once I find out what I am having I may ask on suggestions on who to donate to… I will look locally first but we will see what comes up.

Why not sell the clothes? Honestly… I don’t like dealing with people…money or anything like fb market place. I would rather just give them away.

I will be blogging more often now – I wanted to start blogging when I found out I was pregnant but I know the risks of pregnancy and wanted to wait to see a viable baby. So far I have seen it twice. I started feeling flutters about a week ago, and over all I am feeling positive about this pregnancy. I will be in my second trimester next week.

Tell me about your pandemic or non-pandemic pregnancy. I like to hear other people’s experiences.

Baby #3

Yes, it is THAT time of the year to finally announce my pregnancy. My last one at that – I am 13 weeks this week. I am due August 3rd. BUT I have always given birth 4-6 weeks early so lets just say most likely a July Baby.

What does this mean for me? Well, with COVID going on it means lots of long Dr. appointments alone. Sad but I am going to try to document them as much as I am allowed for my husband. I am a high risk pregnancy due to preterm labor issues with my first child, Pre-eclampsia with BOTH of my last pregnancies and various issues after giving birth, plus my Dr. let me in on a little secret… (I already knew this though) I am OLD… yep 35 years old puts you in a bracket with OLD people. I am high risk for that as well apparently.

I have seen my OBGYN twice so far, and I will start seeing my high risk specialist on the 1st of February. So far I have been having morning sickness ALL DAY- I have lost 10 lbs. But I am slowly gaining back those lbs. And I have been getting headaches and light headed feelings. So far the baby has had a heart rate of 158 the times I have gotten it checked. And we are hopeful for a healthy pregnancy.

Now that the cat is out of the bag I can finally POST stuff. So expect to see some updates here!

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