18 weeks, 5 day ultrasound shows Pud has a penisBOY, oh, BOY, was his 3D ultrasound on Wednesday a fun event!  B was given the chance to make the choice to find out the sex- I made the choice on the triple blood screen- so he got this one.  That's why we went from "don't wanna know" to knowing. 🙂  He's a proud papa-to-be.  Relieved that he doesn't have to love a girl so much that he gets all wrapped around her finger.  Just wait, Buddy; I'm predicting Pud'll have you wrapped around his finger as much as any girl would! LOL
It turns out that the decision to NOT do the triple blood screen was a good one; there's a really high rate of false positives (saying something's wrong when there's not), and the only thing that would have happened is we would have been referred to the 3D ultrasound, which we were already doing.  I knew I felt peace about that decision, and I'm glad it turns out that stats were in my favor.

ultrasound profile of face and trunk at 18 weeks, 5 daysDr. C was very nice and he was very pleased with everything he saw.  Pud's doing great- looks healthy.  The only thing that he wants to see again is his heart- because Pud's a little guy still- he needs to grow a bit more so that they can see his heart better- but all four chambers are there and looking good.  We go back on May 12. 

Pud is the length of a mango right now- 6 inches, and about 8 oz.  I love this description: "Your little action figure is able to choreograph Matrix-like moves this week.  Arms and legs are finally in proportion, neurons are now connected between the brain and muscles, and cartilage throughout the body is turning to bone." (What to Expect app on I-phone)  So. Our "little action figure" can now be felt a little more easily now... still flutters and bubbles, but I do feel him more.  He's also been getting his cheesy vernix caseosa covering this week- the protective stuff that keeps him from turning into a prune.  God thinks of everything!

Wow.  It's so weird not to be using "he" as a gender-neutral pronoun. I even got to use the words "my son" today when a coworker asked, "Who's Pud?" after overhearing me talking with a buddy at work.  Crazy.

We are registered for natural birth and breastfeeding classes at Baby Moon for June-July.  Need to call the hospital and get on the list for their summer classes, too- they include the tour- and I'll get information about meds and interventions.  Meds and interventions scare me more than the labor and delivery, which I know will involve pain.  The pain that I will have scares B more than anything else about labor/delivery.  Isn't that funny? 

We did get a chance to register for cloth diapers at Mother Nurture in Lexington.  The ones we chose should be pretty easy to use and will grow with him. 

We may be able to pull off elimination communication (aka natural infant hygiene), our first choice in meeting Pud's potty needs, but that greatly depends on my staying home.  We'll see. We've read up on and thought about EC/NIH for several years.  It's different for American culture, but quite a natural part of many other cultures.  If we're able to do it, our child will be potty-trained before the typical American kiddo gets started, and the greatest benefit of all is no diaper rashes.

Part of me is growing more used to the idea that I might be headed back to work after a maternity leave, not happily used to it, but dealing with it. 

Definitely deciding to pare down the registries.  Our culture does a great job trying to convince us that we NEED so much more for our babies than we actually do.  We just needed the chance to do some more research on products, and the registries up til now have been a holding place for remembering the product names.  I find it amazing that there are standards in the industries that are supposed to make these products safer for our kiddos, and yet there are thousands of kids' products recalled every year, for the very types of things they're already supposed to be testing for. Hmm.  It's amazing that we survived our own childhoods.
I'm doing well.  My back pains come and go throughout the day, but B's being the ever-gracious hubby and giving the backrubs when I request them.  This seems to be less of a chore with the green alien spaceship massager Daddy is loaning us.  It's great.  The newest quirk is that I'm dealing with flare-ups of my restless legs again.  Apparently, RLS can be caused by pregnancy- they're not exactly sure why. I groaned when I read that the remedy was to have the baby.  IF ONLY my RLS would be exclusive to pregnancy, HA!  I was doing so well with it- avoiding caffeine, knowing which meds not to take when, etc.- that I had managed to mostly  minimize it for MOST of the time.  Makes very little difference now.  That creepy-crawly sensation has been increasingly pronounced, and not just at night anymore. My favorite remedy, fifteen minutes or so of Bandit draped across my legs, isn't such a good idea now.  Sigh.  So I jiggle my legs while suspending them off the
floor, walk around, do the "baby dance", and generally deal with it until the feeling passes.

Also open to ideas about making sleeping on my left side more comfy.  I have pillows.  The new problem is a left arm that's tired of being under my head all night, and yet isn't really comfortable anywhere else. I'm doing the best I can to stay on my left side all night, but folks, it ain't easy.  Growing rapidly is every bit an adjustment as shrinking rapidly- perhaps the opposite challenges. 🙂