March 1, 2007

Due to medical conditions, Monica is excused from gym class for the rest of the semester

If you read last night's blog, you might be wondering where I (and Rasbaby) ended up after today's checkup.

I'm not in the hospital, and I'm sitting up in a chair, so things went better than I expected.

My blood pressure was borderline-high, so my doctor wrote a note officially excusing me from any professional responsibilities until at least 6 weeks after Rasbaby's arrival. Tomorrow will be my last day at the office, where I intend to tidy up my desk and hand off my projects to other people for the next couple of months.

Once I stop working, I don't need to start bed rest yet. I can remain reasonably active, although my doctor did recommend I avoid unnecessary stress and sodium.

And what about my favorite little fetus?

She's doing great. Her heart rate and activity level are quite healthy, so there's no reason to rush her delivery at this point. We'll let her stay where she is, at least through the weekend, and check up on her again next Monday.

There's a part of me that's disappointed to spend a portion of my maternity leave baby-less. That's another week - or two or three - that I could have spent at home being a mother.

On the other hand, I feel like I've been handed an amazing gift. I've been specifically ordered to stop working, relax, and concentrate on improving my own physical and emotional conditions. How often does anyone get this opportunity?

Maybe I'll put together an MP3 playlist for when I'm in labor. Maybe I'll finally pack my suitcase for the hospital (I'll probably need more than just makeup and Cadbury Creme Eggs). Maybe I'll go to Babies R Us on a weekday and finish decorating the nursery. Maybe I'll print out all my baby-themed blogs and paste them into a nice journal for Rasbaby's future reading.

Or maybe I'll just sleep a lot, storing up some energy reserves for midnight feedings and diaper changes.

Or maybe, the minute I'm finally able to relax and savor my time alone, my water will break and the next adventure will begin.

Either way, I'm determined to enjoy these next few days - or perhaps weeks - of focusing first and foremost on myself. Such opportunities are dwindling by the minute. I can't make them last, but I can make them count.

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