Being the lab rat

So last week at my 24 week OB visit I had the glucose screening test, wherr you drink 50 g of sugar and they test how your body metabolizes it in the first hour. If your blood glucose is above 130 or 140 then you have to do a 3 hour glucose tolerance test.

There is diabetes on both sides of my family, so I want surprised when the Dr called and said I’d need to do the extended test. My blood sugar had been 160, which is on the lower assist of the range where you have to do the test. (Above 200 they diagnose gestational diabetes without further testing needed)

So here I am at the hospital blood lab, having fasted since midnight until I finally got in to do the test around noon. I meant to arrive at 8:30 but I overslept and when I got here at 10:30ish the quite a wait. This time they took my fasting level first, then I drank 100 g of sugar (dextrose), and then have had my blood drawn every hour since then. The next draw will be in 15 to 20 minutes and then I finally get to go have a meal!

I’ve been working in the waiting room with wifi. So it hasn’t been the worst thing ever but I’m feeling pretty tired and sluggish and I sure want to eat something.

At least I got to enjoy a new experience while in the waiting room this morning. I was holding my phone and reading with my hand reading on my belly, and baby moved so strongly it made my hand bounce! I still don’t know how to tell a kick from a punch but I guess maybe that was a kick because they are stronger?

We are really looking forward to our final 3D scan on Friday! Another chance to see our little girl moving around!


Part time return to work after maternity leave

So I spoke to my boss yesterday, and while some details and final approvals remain, it looks like I should be able to return to work part time after my maternity leave. I am so thrilled and happy and excited!

I feel really lucky because I know not everyone is in a position to make this work. I work in software, doing a typical M-F work week, in a position with lots of meetings and a benefit to face to face interactions (for user interviews). So I want sure if my boss would think it could be done.

I had been planning a transfer to a department with less meetings and less face time, thinking when it was time to have that conversation I would have a better chance there. But I have made myself very valuable for not only the company but the current department. So when my boss offered to hire someone for me to manage and mentor, the other biggest thing I wanted for my career but had been told wouldn’t be available for the foreseeable future in my current, I came back and said that I would love to stay to do that but only if part time is an option. 

Luckily, it seemed like it was an easy answer for him – he’d rather have me part time than not at all. And while it may not be simple to work out, he trusts I can make it work. He said we would come up with a plan and present it to the higher ups but that he doesn’t anticipate a problem.

So now I’m looking at hiring someone to train now who will help cover my maternity leave, having my first baby in January, and coming back on April to a part time job where I get new experience directly training others in my role, picking some of my favorite parts of my job to keep for myself, and working only part time so I can watch my daughter grow at the same time.

I am on cloud nine!

Advice on negotiating a part time return to work – when and how?

So I’m expecting my first baby in mid January, and I will be taking the full FMLA allowed 12 weeks of maternity leave. And one of my biggest worries with having a baby is how we will deal with happens after that.

I’m not sure if I’ll really want to go back to full time work right away when the leave is up. My therapist, psychiatrist, and some friends have suggested that if possible, part-time work would be great, and I think they may be right.

They’ve advised me to wait until it’s time to talk about coming back from leave to have that discussion, which made sense when I talked with them.

However, I am in a really good negotiating position right now. So I’m contemplating having this discussion early, which frankly would be a huge relief.

That’s where I’m looking for advice. Should I bring it up now? Could that affect my pay during leave? What should I do to prepare and what should I expect?

I’m eager to hear any advice people can share! So jump on over to the comments and tell me what you think!

For more details on why I think now might be the right time, read on below:

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Pregnancy experiences: the odd and the fun

I’m just about 24 weeks along now, and I’ve been thinking a bit about some of the pregnancy experiences I’ve been having. Some of them are often talked about, but I think there’s another category: the unusual experiences that make me pause and go, hm, that’s a new experience for sure, or the ones that amaze you even though you knew it might happen.

The odd:

Wearing an empire waist dress and not actually feeling the fabric hit the front of my legs, until I walk and it brushes into my thighs with each step. This feels eerily like being naked down there in public.

Saying excuse me in a crowded NYC area and having people move what they must think is a normal amount, but which still isn’t enough to fit past with my belly. For me this usually results in my squeezing past anyhow and giving them quite the belly brush-by in the process.

After a summer of wearing sandals, putting on flats in the fall only to realize they feel extremely snug and that new shoes must be purchased. When I went to the store to try new shoes on, I found I’d gone up a whole shoe size and from normal to wide! It was hard to believe how much my feet had changed over a few months!

The fun:

Being out of the “is she or isn’t she?” stage. People can pretty much always tell now. Store clerks have wished me luck and coworkers offer me their seats in crowded gatherings. A side effect of this is that I can wear only a tiny fraction of pre-pregnancy clothes – mostly dresses with empire waists and long open front sweaters.

Feeling the baby’s movements with such strength that they distract me when I wasn’t paying attention to my belly sensations at all. I feel like I am more connected to our baby now as I can tell when she is active and guess when she is probably sleeping. Sometimes she seems to be responding to certain sounds or songs or food I’ve eaten. I love this!