The Misadventures of Kai and Pixel »

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The Third Trimester – Some Glitches

The Sugar Mama

As I rushed crazily through the second trimester, some glitches loomed on the horizon. In January, I flunked my glucose tolerance test and found out that I was “glucose intolerant” or one blood sugar level away from being considered a gestational diabetic. Oh, for the love of chocolate…

(Un)fortunately, my pregnant colleague Chantal had also just been diagnosed with this and I was able to learn from her experience what would happen next: restricted diet, blood testing, and possibly insulin shots. I tried desperately to believe that I would be able to control my sugars with diet alone, however it was not meant to be. Suddenly, I was injecting myself with insulin twice a day and watching the track marks appear on my thighs.

In retrospect, this wasn’t the worst thing that could have happened. Andreas and I both learned a lot about food and diet and I most definitely got over my fear of needles. Pixel loves my diabetic rituals and runs frantically to the bathroom to participate in my insulin injection sessions. Of course, she is mostly interested in the plastic needle covers which are her all time favourite best toy. I think that we have about 50 of these things laying about the apartment and Pixel goes from room to room to play with them.

Parents’ intuition – wrong, wrong, wrong…

OK, I admit it. Andreas and I were both convinced that this baby was a girl. They weren’t able to see any evidence to the contrary on the 20 week scan so we just “felt” that it had to be a girl. And then we went to the 30 week scan. And the little one was bending over in the right way and sure enough, there was a little package between the legs. And so we adjusted our thinking and started buying blue clothing.

The ultrasound technician also let me know that the baby was big, very big. In fact, as the doctor later told me, he is in the 97th percentile for size and weight. Yikes. Now this could throw a wrench into the natural childbirth plan. No one has told me how big they actually expect the baby to be at birth, but I’m thinking he will be 9 or 10 lbs. While this may be related to the gestational diabetes, it is also probably a genetic trait in my family. My great-grandmother had three babies over 10 lbs, and my sisters’ babies were 9 and 10 lbs. We make them big — let’s just hope that he is not so big that he has to come through the “sun roof.”

The Happiest Baby on the Block (or not)

As the 40 week mark approaches and our parenthood is imminent, I wish that I could say that I actually comprehend what is about to happen. Alas, I have no idea. We are just hoping that between family, friends and the internet we will be able to figure this thing called a baby out.

After my frenzied reading during the second trimester, I quickly figured out that everyone has an opinion on parenting, that everyone’s opinion is different and that most of it contradictory. So no matter what we do, someone is going to think that we are good parents and someone is going to think that we should be doing things differently. And I decided at that point that we might as well wing it.

We did sit down the other night to watch a DVD that the doula lent us. It was based on a book called “The Happiest Baby on the Block” and the introduction promised us to teach us how to soothe a crying baby. The opening scenes of the DVD featured wailing newborns and I started to cry (hormones) and to really understand the power that that crying will have over me. I fear it and for a few short moments, the thing called baby became real to me. Then the DVD broke down, leaving us in the dark as to how to soothe our crying baby, and after the panic subsided, I drifted once again into denial…

More about Pixel

Pixel is a Maine Coon cat. Maine Coons are a breed of large domestic cat which is, apparently, one of the older breeds of cat in North America. (See more about Maine Coons here).

We were inspired to get a Maine Coon after meeting Bootsie and Eddie, Margaux and Ron’s two cats. They are well behaved and gentle cats and since we live in an apartment, this was the type of cat we were looking for. I think that Andreas was particularly scarred from the memories of his childhood cat Nikki who used to climb the walls (literally – they had grass wallpaper) and attack unsuspecting prey, claws bared, from above.


Bootsie
Eddie

Pixel has definitely lived up to our expectations. She is a very gentle cat who never gets aggressive. She has learned how to fetch and her favourite toys are the plastic covers for my insulin needles. She carries them around the apartment in her mouth and find interesting places to play with them (usually a pile of clothing on the floor). She is very food-focussed and never misses a chance to be present when the fridge door is opened. She has even learned that if she is quick enough she can some times grab a package of pita bread (a strange favourite) out of the fridge.

There are more photos of Pixel here.