Monthly Archives: July 2012

32 weeks: Non-stress my butt!

These are my Thursday tidbits:

1. If you haven’t already voted for Big Ring and I in the Bikestyle Tours bike room contest, please do. It’s for a good cause; Big Ring has a never-ending need for new cycling gear and a desire for new cycling shades. And seriously, how can you not vote for this totally awesome getup that Big Ring had designed. (For the back story on this photo, click the link: Le Tour de Loft) Just 3 days left for voting!

To vote for Big Ring, click: VOTE FOR BIG RING!

2. This week, because of Dear Diabetes, I had to start going in for non-stress tests to check on the baby’s heart rate and movement; something I’ll have to do twice a week until baby is born.

And it turns out my little thumb-sucker is a tad on the stubborn side. I swear 90 per cent of the day, this kid is super active – jumping, kicking, summersaults, backflips, the worm… – but then when I need it to be active, he or she decides to take a wee little nap!  Mind you, the charts still showed my little alien with a perfect little heart that beat anywhere from 118 bpm to 147 bpm, which apparently is good. They like the fluctuations, the nurse told me, it’s the “flatlining” babies they worry about.

But seriously, they should rename non-stress tests, super stress tests. After our first appointment, I had to book a series of appointments, and it’s as though these people either think you don’t work or you shouldn’t be working. They expect you to be super flexible, and yet they’re not super flexible. It took 30 minutes to book all the appointments, squeezing them in between my diabetes and pregnancy clinic appointments, obstetrician appointments, ultrasounds, and work. At one point, I looked at the receptionist and said “I thought this was supposed to be non-stress?”

3. Hey moms, does this look somewhat familiar?

Back in the day, when I was first diagnosed with type-1, Children’s Hospital gave my parents a white container in the shape of a half moon that would somehow latch onto the toilet seat for easy pee collection to test for ketones and such – they coined it the cowboy hat. And even though this cardboard replica is much smaller, and does not latch onto the toilet, it reminded me of them old cowboy hat days – and it too was great in the prevention of peeing all over my hands, which happens much too often these days!

4. Speaking of Children’s Hospital, a place I spent many days and nights in during my youth and the only hospital I have ever stayed in that I haven’t held a grudge against, today was Miracle Treat Day. For every DQ blizzard sold, $1 went to Children’s Hospital. How could I not support the cause 😀

So uhm, that container there, that was the equivalent of two meals worth of carbs – and worth every last delectable bite!

5. Breast-feeding classes really need to come up with better-looking breasts than this:

I was trying to take the whole thing seriously, trying to pay attention, but when I got a creepy looking baby doll in one hand and a knitted lop-sided boob in the other, I was pretty much a lost cause for this class! Yep, I’m mature 😉

‘HOLY COW… there’s a baby in there’

My goodness my “little” five-pounder is turning heads these days!

Even the shadows are talking.

I had an ultrasound done yesterday to measure the size of thumb-sucking alien baby and pretty much the whole time the perinatologist kept saying Yep, that’s a big one.” She did multiple measurements seemingly to will TSAB to a smaller size (they use an equation that measures the circumference of the head, the cut of mama’s belly and something else to figure out the size) but finally had to concede that I’ve got a five-pounder in my belly, which falls in the 93rd percentile of huge! (Really hoping that large head equates to a super-large, super-smart brain ;))

But given the numerous exclamations and proclamations regarding the size of my belly these days, you’d think I was carrying a 20-pounder in there!

Now, there have been some amazing people (friends, acquaintances, and even a few strangers) who’ve quipped at the smallness of my belly, and let me just say, if we weren’t already bffs, I assure you we are now! But more so than not, it’s those others whose comments haunt my daily endeavors:

“Wow, you’re quite large for where you are!”
“That’s not a subtle pregnancy is it?!?”
“That baby looks ready to pop!”
“Must be any day now.”
“Packing a large load there, hey.”
“Are you sure there’s not twins in there?”
“My gawd, that doesn’t even look real!”

Yep, it’s come to this, my baby the serving table 😀

It’s not the first time I’ve encountered such comments throughout this pregnancy… I have been sporting a preggers paunch for quite some time. And yet, every time I’m faced with these types of comments, it’s like I lose the ability to use my friggin’ tongue. Because if I were on the ball, that pharmacist, that barista, that old lady walking the trail, and that half-naked, hairy, old man sitting at the bus stop would have heard something along the lines of: “In 2 months time, this belly will be gone, but in 2 months time, that ugly face of yours will still be just as ugly as it today. Shame.”
Oh. Snap.

I can take a joke, sure I can, in fact, I’m usually the butt of my own jokes, and almost always the easy target for my brothers, but after 8 months of an ever-changing, hormonal body, 5 months of people remarking on the rotund size of my belly, one of them even having the gall to call me Tubs – and 90 per cent of whom are strangers – I’m losing my patience. I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be appropriate for me to walk up to a non-pregnant person and greet them as Shamu,” so why is it okay for them to walk up to me and pretty much do the same?


Now, that all being said, when my soon-to-be brother-in-law, who I haven’t seen in about a month and a half, walks into a room, spots my belly, points at it with his mouth agape and shouts: “HOLY COW… there’s a baby in there!” he can be forgiven. I know I’m sounding hypocritical, but first of all, this guy is family, that’s what they do; second of all, he is notorious for sticking his foot in his mouth and bringing a laugh to everyone else’s in the process; and third, I know I could kick his ass in a running race – even in my 32-week pregnant state! Who’s laughing now Patty Pat Pat? Bahahahhahahaa 😛

‘She’s got the Jimmy legs!’

Dear Pregnancy Guru,

I tried to follow your advice, I tried to embrace the power of positive thinking, I tried to feel your words whilst repeating them over and over again: “I feel great and pregnancy is easy on my body. I feel great and pregnancy is easy on my body. I feel great and pregnancy is easy on my body…” But it didn’t work!

My body has been taken over by a little thumb-sucking alien baby and quite frankly it’s not enjoying the experience. Reason number 412 as to why I will never get pregnant again: Jimmy Legs!

For the past four days, I have been subjected to an excruciatingly persistent dull ache in both my legs, mostly in my calves, and mostly when I’m in a seated position –which given all the commuting I do, is 90 per cent of my day. Sometimes, however, usually in the car, the ache creeps all the way up my right thigh. It’s not a sharp pain, it’s not a pain that would cause screams of agony, but it is a pain that has me wanting to reach for the nearest butcher’s knife to chop off the leg in hopes of getting rid of the ache. Seriously, it’s like I got freaking creepy crawlies running around inside my legs, and it’s at its worst in the car, which is not the greatest place to be feeling the heeby jeebies let me just say!

I finally texted my pregnancy chick in the know today to ask what she thought it might be, and she suggested restless leg syndrome. NOT THE JIMMY LEG? NOOOOOOOOO!

“She’s got the Jimmy legs!”

I Google doctored the ailment and discovered that not only is pregnancy a common cause of this, but that diabetes is too AND that’s there’s no known cure for it. Are you freaking kidding me?

I swear every possibly pregnancy ailment out there I have been subjected to. And I’m keeping a list, oh yes I am, a list that seems to get new point added every day. Why assemble such a list? Because I have been told time and time again that once I hold my little thumb-sucking alien baby in my arms I will forget all the bad stuff, and that one day I will want to go through all this again. Nuh-uh. This list, which will be laminated and stored in a safe spot only to be pulled out if I ever get that preggers urge again, is my insurance!

Good thing I only ever wanted one 😀

This woman

This woman is the most beautiful woman I know:

She has a heart of gold, ears of a saint, and the hard-working hands of a carpenter.

She will hula-hoop with you at any age.

Will try to ‘Time Out’ and backtrack stories much to the laughter of all around her.

And will be the best cheering crew at any race.

Her eyes will instantly sparkle in the presence of her four children, nine-and-a-half grandchildren, and one great grandchild, and will do anything for them. She will cradle her six-year-old sobbing daughter if she’s just been run out of a birthday party by stupid bullies; she will sleep on an uncomfortable hospital cot to ensure her child doesn’t have to spend the night alone; she will cut her vacations short and hop on a jet at the first mention her child is in hospital; no matter what, no matter where, no matter how, this woman will always be there.

This woman is my moms, the most wonderful, caring, amazing woman I know.

Happy Birthday Moms. Thank you for always being there for me; for inspiring me to work hard; for never letting me believe I couldn’t be anything but amazing; for encouraging my off-beat singing; and for having the most incredible mother’s intuition those nights I went into convulsions.

I love you to pieces!

Just call me ol’ Wonky Eye

Dear Big Brother, and anyone else who believes video blogs are the way of the future – my wonky eye begs to differ!

I’ve done videos over the years, quite a few actually, but hardly any of which have been made public due to my uncontrollable wonky eye. Seriously, I don’t know what the hell goes on when there’s a camcorder in front of it, but it starts winking and blinking and squinting and weeping and wandering and my gawd it twitches as though there were a rogue eyelash incessantly stabbing the retina. It’s freaking ridiculous!

I’ve known this was an issue for quite some time (in fact, there was once a time in my life when I dreamed of becoming the next Jennie Garth, but the wonky eye kiboshed that dream… wonder if that’s what kiboshed hers too???) and so with this latest production, I made sure to ask Big Ring (aka: Michael Mann) after the first take if my eye was wonky, and he assured me that nope, it was not. He lied. Totally wonky.

Just stick long hair on that sucker and it’s me in front of a video camera!

But there comes a time in your life when you’ve just got to embrace the wonk and put it out to the people. This is my time.

I recently became aware of the You Can Do This Project, an online diabetes campaign of videos created by diabetics for diabetics that works to provide validation, hope and encouragement for those in need. Sounds pretty cool, right, totally cool. And I’m pretty sure I’m the only diabetic out there who didn’t already know about it!

You Can Do This was started by Kim Vlasnik a year ago, and has become a go-to place for diabetics to share their stories and “be a light in someone’s darkness.” Man, I could have used something like this over the years. I couldn’t pull my eyes away from the videos, vigorously nodding my head at the similar experiences, grimacing at the tough times, and smiling through the different realms of inspiration. So far, this one’s my favourite:

It didn’t take long for me to realize I had to be a part of this – wonky eye and all!

I know I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again, my diabetes story is not a perfect story. I used to think I was an endocrinologist’s worst nightmare. I hid stashes of candy between my mattresses, gorged out on ice cream under the dinner table when no one was around, threw my healthy lunches in the bushes, and was carted off to the hospital in hypoglycemic convulsions several times. And when I was a kid, I thought for sure I was the only one, I cried with my head under my pillow, pounded my fists into my bookshelf, dreamed of a different life. But, after almost 25 years with this disease, I can tell you, while it’s not always easy, it does get better. And heck, if I can get through it, anyone can 😀

This is my wonky-eyed story:

You will note there’s only actually 5 seconds of me talking on screen, the rest hit the cutting room floor 😉

30 weeks: tug-of-war

My belly is huge; my emotions are scattered; my sleep is sporadic; every inch of my body is achy; and my insulin doses are being adjusted every day – welcome to the home stretch baby.

On Thursday, we officially hit the 30-week mark, which means if everything goes as planned Big Ring and I will be meeting our little thumb-sucking alien baby in just under two and a half months. And if those months are anything like the last week has been, I might as well just extend my pre-apologies right now to my dear husband.

I may have driven him to crazy Roger Rabbit status this week!

This week I was on holidays and it was a tough go for me. I’m an active person, I like to keep busy, I like to do things, but these days, I can barely climb a flight of stairs without huffing and puffing. There’s been no hiking (unlike my last holidays), hardly any walking, hardly anything at all.

My view of anything athletic these days is generally in sit-down mode like I was while watching the Gastown Gran Prix last Wednesday.

And while we did spend a few days in Penticton last weekend, it didn’t feel like a real vacation in that I wasn’t as mobile, didn’t have oodles of energy or a dance in my step like I would have pre-pregnancy. I was achingly uncomfortable, sauna hot, and sweating buckets – seriously I was close to becoming a freaking nudist!

The view from Poplar Grove Vineyard.

As well, this week was the second week of Tour de France time; traditionally the start of Big Ring’s two-week cycling holiday, which has him getting up before the crack of dawn to watch hours of cycling before heading out himself for hours on the Lapierre… something I’ve always supported. But this year, it was like a freaking emotional tug-of-war for me. On the one hand, I felt like I was holding him back when he didn’t go for a ride, but on the other I was  super jealous when he did kit up.

One of many holiday rides for Big Ring.

And yep, a meltdown did ensue. However, said meltdown may have resulted in an act I have never before done, never had any desire to do, never ever thought I would do, but after doing so, it may soon become a filthy little habit…

I got a pedicure!!!

This was huge for me. I do not like feet, I do not like my feet, and I most definitely do not like people touching my feet. But my gawd, sitting in that massage chair, with my feet soaking in the tub (I sure as heck hope I don’t get any nasty germs) I nearly passed out from all the bliss. I still had issues with them touching my feet, and nearly kicked the girl in the face a couple times, but after the polish was put on, I seriously haven’t been able to take my eyes off my toes – and I’m actually wearing shoes to show off my toes! SHOCKING!!!

A little pregnancy pampering was all a princess needed it seems … now, how do I get my hands on one of those chairs 😉

Wish upon a rainbow

I don’t know what it is about Big Ring and the fondos he signs up for, but it seems I’m just not destined to see him cross the finish line. One out of three times is not a very good track record.

And because of that, I’m forced to “borrow” this watermarked shot

When he did Whistler two years ago, I was stuck in traffic trying with all my might to will the vehicles in front of me away so I could get there in time, but to no avail; I was 15 minutes too late. When he did the Levi Leipheimer last year, I made a point of standing at the finish line for hours to ensure I did not have another Whistler no-show repeat. And this past weekend, when he did the Axel Merckx, there was no doubt in my mind, I would be at that finish line.

You see, unlike the other fondos, we had the live tracking option this time around, so when I saw that he had passed through the 72 km mark, I booked it to the finish line figuring he’d surely be in within the hour if not sooner. I picked my spot; had my camera ready; and was practicing my vocal exercises in preparation for the most perfect finishing moment.

But after just 20 minutes, a combination of low blood sugars and sweltering heat mixed with an uncomfortable pregnant belly, nearly knocked me out. I started to sweat, had the shakes, got woozy, and could hardly stand up without feeling like I was on the next train to Pukesville. I popped some sugar tablets, ate a granola bar, and tried standing off into the shade, but to no relief. Finally, I succumbed, and sulkingly shuffled off to a shady spot on the grassy knoll.

Within minutes of doing so, Big Ring crossed the finish line. Are you freaking kidding me???

All smiles (and caked-on sunscreen) post fondo.

To say I was disappointed, is an understatement. After last year’s fondo, seeing him with a huge smile on his face come across that finish line, me cheering so super loud, and running up to embrace his chalky, sweat-ridden body, I have never before felt such excitement and pride and happiness for another being as I did in that moment. I wanted that again.

He and RDM didn’t seem too phased I wasn’t where I should have been.

Don’t get me wrong, I was still extremely proud when he made his way over to my shady spot, and still super happy to see that buoyant smile on his face, and thrilled that he was able to ride a fondo with his 76-year-old uncle 10-speed Pete (Big Ring’s got a long history of cycling in his family; in fact, that’s how his parents met :D) but I wanted to be there for him like he’s always been there for me.

Big Ring and 10-speed Pete before fondo and post fondo.

So hear me now Big Ring, I will see you cross the next finish line; I will cheer for you louder than anyone else on the concourse; and I will have a little Thumb-Sucking Alien Baby posse excitedly screaming along with me!

That is my wish upon the rainbow!