Friday, January 28, 2011


I am fat.

I know, I know, "you're not fat, you're pregnant". As if offhandedly saying that is really going to make me feel better about it, y'know?

The truth is, I am fat. I've gained 18 pounds in the past two months and my OB/GYN has no idea why.

At my December appointment, I also peed out enough sugar to bake a cake, leading her to think that maybe my sudden bout of fatassness was due to diabetes. After a month of trying to force myself into the GI diet, I went back last week only to have no glucose in my urine whatsoever--which didn't stop the scale from budging up almost ten pounds more.

The problem is that I'm simply not eating enough to be gaining this much weight. Weight, after all, doesn't just pop up--you have to put food in your body for it to be converted into blood, tissue, fat, poop, whatever. For the last four weeks, I wrote down everything that went into my mouth, halved my carbohydrate intake, ditched the sugar--and gained eight pounds.

My doctor warned me that if this doesn't stop, I'm going to weigh way, way more than either of us would be comfortable with by the time my pregnancy was over, and it wasn't going to come off. Hell, I weigh far more now that I'm comfortable with, and it's only going to get worse from here.

My OB whipped out her pink rhinestone tape measure* and plopped it over my belly--at least I'm not having a 38 pound baby. My stomach isn't measuring large--so where am I packing on the pounds? I found out where all the poundage is going at the Chinese restaurant during lunch on Tuesday. They have a full-length mirror in the restroom, something that I don't have at home. I hiked up my shirt, dropped my pants and took a look, and dear god my legs are disgusting. I knew they were getting bag, but holy Christ, I look like I have chicken drumsticks for thighs. My butt is one big stretch mark--literally, I have stretch marks--horizontally--from hip to hip. It's disgusting, and I want to know why this is happening because I don't eat enough for this to happen.

I re-downloaded the fitness app for my phone that I had been using to successfully track calories and lose a few pounds before getting pregnant. I had a normal day and then a force-myself-to-eat-a-lot day. What happened? For the normal day, I came in 300 calories under my "goal", and for my day of self-imposed binge eating, I came in 250 calories over. My "goal" calorie limit was set to "maintain current weight", and the tracker calculated that if every day was like the binging day, I'd gain a pound in five weeks. I can't imagine trying to stuff myself that full of food on a daily basis.

I don't understand how I'm gaining almost two pounds a week. I suppose I could have a tumor, but don't people with tumors usually... lose weight? I thought cancer made you skinny. Then again, cancer just made me depressed and angry, then it took a dump on my sex life, and then I got fat (being depressed and angry and losing your libido will do that to a person).

My OB wants to see my gaining half a pound a week from here on out so that my overall weight gain during pregnancy is still less than 35 pounds. 35 pounds--that's almost forty! I don't want to gain 35 pounds. Why couldn't I be one of those cute pregnant ladies who only gains 20 pounds and gets the cute little bump instead of some sort of magical fat-producing whale creature with drumstick thighs?

*Remember when I said I had a soft-spoken, serious OB? I do. She has a pink, sparkly tape measure. This amuses me.

Friday, January 21, 2011

The Underwear Drawer of Shame

I have a secret (except it's not really a secret).

I am a lingerie whore.

That's right, I spend outrageous amounts of money on underwear. Victoria's Secret makes a killing off of me--not as much of a killing as Express does, but a killing nonetheless.

However, the balance on my Express card is now down to a measly $282, and... I just paid off my Vicky's card.

I have a Victoria's Secret credit card with a $1200 limit and no balance.

This has never happened before, and I don't like it.

I have been surviving for the past five months in $10 bras from Target. Apparently, women wear these cheap bras all the time. I mean, really, I've heard that there are women who actually wear these things as actual, honest-to-god underwear. Every day!

I need to find these women, take them to Vicky's and show them what their world could be like. There needs to be an intervention for those poor, misguided girls and their unlucky bosoms. I'm assuming that they just don't know any better--how could you put your breasts into one of these $10 Target-brand nightmares when you could be wearing a BioFit or an Ipex? Obviously, these women have never tried a BioFit bra, or else they wouldn't still be buying cheap torture devices from Target.

Unfortunately, I have been driven to the $10 Target bra by necessity. Not knowing what size my boobs are going to be from one month to the next means that I cannot, in good conscience, spend $50+ on a bra that might not fit next week. My girls have swung from a 34C to a 38DD in six months, and I don't even want to think about what's going to happen from there. I've kept the girls locked in tight to their $10 Target prison 24/7, only letting them out to shower--after all, what they don't know about gravity can't hurt them.

Bras aren't really what I wanted to talk about, anyway.

I came dangerously close last week to doing the unthinkable. Sure, I've been damned to the Target bras by necessity, but I almost--almost--picked up a six-pack of underwear at Target, too.

I got as far as looking at the display. I couldn't do it. I could not bring myself to buy generic underwear in a plastic package. Panties should not be sold in bulk. Panties should be roaming free in the vast expanse of the VS PINK panty bar, waiting to be fondled, loved, taken home and used to adorn one's posterior with cute little patterns/pictures/sayings. They should not come pre-folded with cardboard and vacuum-sealed in a plastic envelope.

My panty situation is getting desperate. My ever-widening ass is threatening to leave the last of my size medium panties behind, and my few pair of larges are starting to show some wear. I bought a stash of VS PInk yoga panties (stretchy microfiber, yum!), but the bikini cut gives me wedgies (why was the store out of boyshorts?!). I should probably get around to returning them (I only wore one pair before encountering the wedgie problem).

If I run out of appropriate panties, I have to resort to the very bottom of my underwear drawer, where I keep my undesirables. No, not my unmentionables, my undesirables, because they guarantee that no one will ever desire you once they see you wearing them (and that really defeats the purpose of fancy panties, doesn't it?).

These are the stretched-out, hole-y, stained monstrosities purchased way back in the eighth grade, when I first discovered that underwear doesn't have to come in plastic packages. They were purchased from--shudder--places like K-Mart and J.C. Penney, before my teenage self got smart to Vicky's and the joys of credit debt.

I honestly don't know why I haven't thrown all of the horrible things away yet.

I feel as though I should keep them around until I'm done with being pregnant. After all, I don't have to worry about ruining them--they're already ruined. However, every time I leave the house wearing a pair, I worry about what might happen. If I get into a horrible car accident, someone might see my underwear and be so turned off that they run away, leaving me to die on the side of the road.

Even when faced with certain death if I experience any ill fate while wearing the horrible panties, I can't bring myself to buy pre-packaged underwear. Nor do I like the idea of buying new VS panties, only to christen them with my godawful pregnant downstairs (pregnant women make more va-jay-jay snot than... I don't even know where I was going with that. It's gross. I'm sorry).

For now, I guess I will somehow keep surviving in my $10 Target bra and my horrible old undies. After all, there's only a few months left until I can run back into the welcoming comfort of Victoria's Secret...

Monday, January 17, 2011

I'm sick (again).

I am currently working my way through another round of Mucinex (or I was, until the pharmacy was out of it and I had to get Sudafed instead). I was kind of thinking that I might end up at the doctor's today, but (thankfully) I don't think antibiotics are going to be necessary this time.

My husband came down with a nasty respiratory infection last week, and after three days of taking him to the Minute Clinic/emergency room/doctor's office and forcing him to eat something every once and awhile, I caught it, too. Yesterday was pretty bad, but aside from a scratchy throat and some congestion, I'm feeling much better today.

I woke up yesterday morning with a mouth full of mucus--GROSS. This sparked a day-long jihad against bacteria in the house. Every item of clothing that'd been so much as looked at in the past week got thrown into the laundry. After the clothes, it was the towels. After the towels, I had it in for the bedsheets and the throw blanket on the couch. The germs were not going to have any safe places to thrive, not if I could help it. Re-use of coffee mugs for Theraflu was strictly forbidden--I now have a sink full of mugs to go into the dishwasher. I stationed Kleenex throughout the house and placed my travel bottle of hand sanitizer on the entertainment center. Begone, foul bacteria!

Maybe it's psychosomatic, but I do feel better after all that.

Or maybe it was dinner last night. We went to see Tris' dad and the rest of his family on Saturday, and we all went out to this little podunk diner/bar. I had a bacon cheeseburger, and it was good. Last night found us venturing our bacteria-laden selves out into the snow for Harry Buffalo, where I indulged in a bacon-cheddar bison burger on a wheat bun. It was probably one of the better things I've ever eaten. Then we bought Q-tips and Kleenex and Sudafed at the pharmacy and went home. Our lives are very exciting.

When I'd started getting really scratchy on Saturday night, I'd devoured almost a pint of ice cream somewhere around 10 PM. This doesn't really have anything to do with being pregnant... honestly, I didn't even really want ice cream, I just wanted to eat something cold. Last night, I retrieved what looked like a box of orange creamsicles from our freezer. We'd bought them awhile ago and I'd assumed that there must be a few left in the box, because who leaves an empty box in the freezer?

We do, apparently.

I'm debating whether I should get some popsicles today or not. On one hand, popsicles are delicious and I really would like something cold for my throat (cough drops aren't quite cutting it). On the other hand, then there will be popsicles in my house and I will tempted to eat them all. I don't think my OB would approve of a popsicle-and-Sudafed diet.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


The image to the left is a little doodle I did of myself. The red parts are the parts of me that are currently covered in eczema.

It sucks.

For those who don't know what eczema is, go here for a brief introduction. Be warned, it's gross.

Do you remember my post about pregnancy acne? I stated that my eczema had cleared right up and I was happier than shit. It's time for me to eat my words.

I've had eczema since I was roughly six weeks old. I've been on corticosteriods and a vast number of other prescription creams/ointments/lotions for the past ten years. When it's not treated, I get downright disgusting--if I'm not oozing all over everything, I'm flaking all over everything. I don't have other options, it's either ooze, or flake. If I indulge the urge to scratch, I ooze. If I drive myself crazy by resisting, I dry out completely and flake. It's a no-win situation.

Unfortunately, pregnancy means that I can't slather myself in Clobex, AKA My Very Favorite Drug Ever Aside From Xanax. It's one of the most potent topical steriods available, and it is completely fantastic. It comes in three forms--lotion, shampoo and spray--and I am completely in love with the lotion. The only drawback is that it is difficult to rub on your own back... but hey, that's what the spray is for.

Without my Clobex, I am a worthless husk of a human being. Literally, I am all dried out, like a worthless husk.

The very worst part of all this is the type of eczema I get on my hands. It's called dyshidrosis. It is actually the reason I went to a dermatologist in the first place. I've had to use so many steriods, so frequently, on my hands, that the skin is actually atrophied. The skin on my hands is paper-thin and worthless. If my cat scratches me, it takes roughly 3-4 years to heal completely. My hands look like old-people hands, but it is way better than having them look like zombie hands.

Of course, now I am stuck with zombie hands. They itch. My entire left forearm is one giant rash. It itches, too. And my back itches and my scalp itches and the big patch of eczema on my thigh itches. I would cut off my left arm for some Clobex right about now.

I am trying to tell myself that not giving my baby horrible birth defects or whatever Clobex does to babies is more important than a couple days' worth of lotion.

One of my worst fears is that Pax is going to come out and six weeks into his tiny little life, I'm going to pick him up and discover rashes... rashes that only respond to hydrocortisone. And then, y'know, ten years later, they're only going to respond to Group VI steroids... and then Group V, and then... and then... and then, eventually, he'll end up just like mom and have old-people hands at the age of 20.

We've tried to secure baby items for sensitive skin, just as a precaution. Sensitive skin wipes, Aveeno bath items, organic bedding. We're using cloth diapers to minimize exposure to the chemicals in disposable diapers. I'm worried about what I am going to do about detergent. Laundry detergent is my number one eczema trigger. If it isn't free and clear, hypoallergenic liquid detergent, I break out. I need unscented, liquid fabric softener--dryer sheets leave fibers behind and they make me itch like mad. I dread hotel rooms, because I know they use cheap detergent.

So far, I plan on washing Pax's diapers with Tide powder and the rest of his clothes with my regular detergent and softener (All Free Clear, Ultra Downey Free and Sensitive). I'm a little sad I can't use my All on the diapers, but Tide does make a free and clear powder detergent that I'd like to try out (I've heard good recommendations for Tide powder to keep diapers clean and absorbent).

We'll see how this goes. For now, I'm one itchy mama.