Ok, so . . .it’s been a few weeks and lots of things have happened!
- Just a few days after my last entry, L mentioned to me that she’d had a mild but persistent headache for the last few days. “E-mail the midwives. It might be nothing but . . .” I was thinking of my own pre-cursors to pre-eclampsia and crossing all the things it wasn’t that – since she was just over 26w. Way too early for the fear of pre-E. She did, e-mail the midwives that is, and they told her to take her blood pressure at the drug store. She did, and came home to report it was 145/97 which was, you know, fucking high so she called the midwives again. “Come in to triage” they said. And she went. The realization that we now live very far away from our extensive support network hit me like a ton of bricks at that moment. Luckily, we do have a (much smaller) group of folks we love and trust here in the area, one of whom was willing to come over and hang at our house while Ansel slept so I could go be with L at the L&D triage. There, L was hooked up to monitors and her BP was taken every 15 minutes. As the evening wore on, it lowered steadily until at just before 11pm, it was in a normal range. They ran pre-E labs, all of which came back normal (thank 7 lb baby Jesus.) They asked her to come in that Friday and get the BP checked again.
That Friday, her BP was high again. This meant an automatic referral to the OB. That happened the following Tuesday. At the OB appointment, her BP was high again. The glimmer of hope that her care might be co-managed by the midwives and an OB was over. “You can forget about the midwives” the OB told her. And along with that pronouncement came a diagnosis: gestational hypertension. We learned that it was too early for medication, that bedrest actually isn’t that helpful, and that Tiny may very well come before September 2nd, perhaps even before 37W. L will be seeing the OB every other week, and getting additional ultrasounds to check Tiny’s growth.
Of course, this is all made exponentially more complicated because . . .
- We bought a house! In Tacoma! Which isn’t that far from Seattle, but it’s far enough that we do not want to be driving up for frequent appointments, nor do we want to be that far away from medical providers if something happens. We aren’t officially moving until mid- July, even though we now 100% own the house, which further complicates things. We will be talking to the doc about this conundrum at her next appointment.
But . . .we bought a house! The whole process went incredibly smoothly, minus the fact that, as a former Colorado resident who has purchased property in the past, I expected the closing of this transaction to look like the ones before. Accordingly, I cleared my calendar for yesterday (the day we were scheduled to close) and even readjusted our travel plans to Denver, since we originally were scheduled to fly home yesterday (so we switched Monday.) Last Friday, our lender called to tell us about a couple of small hiccups – one of which was that we hadn’t “signed” yet and it needed to happen 24 hours in advance of the closing. I assumed this was some Washington specific thing, but that it was a piece of paper that needed to be signed. It worked out, and they sent a mobile notary to our house – she arrived 10 minutes after we got home from the airport and was, unfortunately, witness to the post-travel hot mess that was our family that night. In between feeding Ansel bites of hummus while Team Oomizoomi (A’s new fave) played on the laptop, L and I (I later learned) signed ALL of the mortgage and real estate documents necessary! WEIRD. I only found out this was the process because I sent a text to the lender asking when the closing was scheduled and she told me we’d done our part. So bizarre!
(Those of you for whom this is the norm: In Colorado – and other places, I think? – you go to a scheduled closing appointment time where you, the seller, the Title company officer, your lender and all the real estate agents sit around and sign everything, and the wire goes through and at the end, you get your keys.)
Last night, though, we met up with our lovely realtor at our new house (!) and she gave us the keys! She also gave us these beautiful ceramic travel mugs with a map of Tacoma with “Home” written inside. You all . . . Tacoma might not be “cool” and it might have a weird reputation, but people who live there LOVE it, and we feel SO welcomed and so excited to be a part of this community. I got a little misty eyed when she gave us the mugs and told us “Tacoma is a better place because your family is here.” Swoon.
- Did I mention that we went back to Denver for the weekend?
Oof. It felt like a VERY long weekend, even though we were only there for a few days.
The GOOD: We got to hang with some of our besties, M + L, who adore A (and he adores them!) and they threw us a very small, super queer, baby celebration at their house (complete with lots of smoked meats for my meat loving pregnant dandy!) and stood strong at the family baby ‘sprinkle’ the next day. We also got to spend two mornings at the pool in my parent’s neighborhood, which was lovely. We saw a lot of our friends at the various celebrations, got a bunch of beautiful, creative, thoughtful hand painted onesies, as well as some gift cards and cash to spend on necessary baby gear, and Ansel got a big brother gift that he is enchanted by (Minnie Mouse + Trains = heaven)
The HARD: My parents recently moved from the house I grew up in to a brand new home (in the same housing development as my brother and SIL) which was, ideally, supposed to be helpful for them (since they went from a 2 story to a ranch) but in actuality is maybe not, since the house they moved into is GIGANTIC (with the finished basement, it’s over 4000 sqft. Yes, I said four THOUSAND. That’s close to 4 times the size of our new 1200 sqft house) and does not seem to have alleviated the excessive cleaning and caretaking, except that the yard is now smaller. In addition, my parents have limited experience with littles other than my 4 year old extremely cautious and very verbal (not physical) nephew – which means they were basically super freaked out by Ansel’s interest in and ability to get into fucking everything. My mom even made some insinuations that he was a “bad” kid/ something was “wrong” with him (while also ignoring the fact that A was excited to swim – mostly without support – in the deep end of the pool while his older cousin wouldn’t go past the 1 ½ ft zone even while being carried) which made me feel deep RAGE. Also, things are generally hard with my mom (ex: I call her 1x/week and know all the details of their move; she didn’t know about the seizure disorder/ L’s high BP/our move until we were there all weekend to tell her, because she never asked about my life and ended the conversation on the phone every time I started telling her.)
It was exhausting and we are all still recovering from emotional intensity, long travel days, bad naps and shitty food (why do I eat so badly around my parents? UGH.)
That’s the deal, team. It’s a lot. Some hard, some bad, some good. But always this guy. ❤
(who is kissing his own belly good night while wearing his new favorite Minnie Mouse PJs)
*Extra Credit points to the reader who can name this musical theater reference