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Nearly half a million babies (1 in 10) are born premature in the US each year which is higher than that of most other developed nations. This is the journeys of our first born son, Finnegan, who was born 14 weeks early and weighed only 1 pound 15 ounces at birth. Of our daugher, Korrigan, who was born a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces at 37 weeks. And of our second son, MacKeegan, who was also born at 37 weeks at a whopping 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Our continued adventures reminds us daily how good God is.

Friday, December 31

33 weeks and a new year

Bring it on! Are you ready for a new year? 2011 is shaping up to a busy, fun, and blessed year for us and we can't wait. Lots of changes and additions coming with family and friends. Here's to taking the lessons we learned from 2010 and using them to enjoy and better ourselves in 2011! Happy New Year to all of our wonderful family, friends and blog followers!

How your baby's growing: This week your baby has passed the 17-inch mark and weighs a little over 4 pounds (heft a pineapple).
[First of all, I can relate to the size of a pineapple. Second, I can deal with FOUR pounds!!] She's rapidly losing that wrinkled, alien look and her skeleton is hardening. The bones in her skull aren't fused together, which allows them to move and slightly overlap, thus making it easier for her to fit through the birth canal. (The pressure on the head during birth is so intense that many babies are born with a conehead-like appearance.) These bones don't entirely fuse until early adulthood, so they can grow as her brain and other tissue expands during infancy and childhood.

How your life's changing: As your baby fills out even more of your belly, lots of things might start to change: Whereas before you were sashaying, you may find yourself waddling. Finding an easy position to sit in — let alone sleep — is becoming more of a challenge.[it is usually worse in the morning hours, probably from laying down for so long] And bumping into chairs and counters is par for the course. [I keep spilling on my belly! I made lasagna last night and Jim had to tell me I got sauce on my shirt. Oh, well!]

You may be feeling some achiness and even numbness in your fingers, wrists, and hands. Like many other tissues in your body, those in your wrist can retain fluid, which can increase pressure in the carpal tunnel, a bony canal in your wrist. Nerves that run through this "tunnel" may end up pinched, creating numbness; tingling, shooting or burning pain; or a dull ache. Try wearing a splint to stabilize your wrist or propping your arm up with a pillow when you sleep [I thankfully don't have this symptom yet anyway, but propping your wrist on a pillow while sleeping?!?! Really? Sounds really practical to me ;)]. If your work requires repetitive hand movements (at a keyboard or on an assembly line, for instance), remember to stretch your hands when you take breaks — which should be frequently.

Many women are still feeling sexy at this stage — and their partners often agree. You may need to make some adjustments, but for most women, sex during pregnancy is fine right up until their water breaks or their labor starts. [because we are a high risk pregnancy, no sex for! Maybe in a couple weeks...]

New symptom as of yesterday: dizziness! I don't think I've ever been dizzy (not to be confused with ditzy!) in my life. I got out of bed yesterday and just about fell over. It continued all day whenever I transitioned from one position to another or was in a reclined position. I called the nurses line and she told me other symptoms to watch for (in case it is preeclampsia) and if it persists for a couple days, to call back and talk to the doctor on call. It seems better today, but still on and off.

My FFN test came back negative again this week, which is good news. It really does look as though little baby girl Thomas is planning to stay put until she is supposed to arrive. I don't know if that makes her more stubborn or more obedient than her big brother. Hmmm... I'm hoping for Feb 1 (we already have enough Jan birthdays in our family!), but at this point, would happily take anything.

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