Better, closer, warmer

I finally feel like I'm getting somewhere. I've been almost pain-free for a week or so. I still have it most mornings when I first wake up, but it goes away by the time I get to work (and walk the half mile to my desk) and move around.

In PT, I have a lot of core exercises now that are actually making my abs sore. It's awesome. The numbness in my foot has also significantly decreased, so I think things are definitely improving. I'm still taking it easy on the work out front - only walking about three miles every night and doing my PT ab lab. My therapist said it would probably be alright for me to start doing some wall squats with the ball supporting my spine, so that's my next move to try to lose some of the junk in my trunk.

And on the WW front, I've lost 6 lbs (finally!) and I know if I can stay focused on that, the weight will slowly, but surely come off. I did cave in and buy a pair of pants a size larger than normal so that I can have one pair that buttons. Wearing the belly band when you are not pregnant gets old, fast.


And we're done, almost.

Breast-feeding that is.

A few weeks ago (18 or 19 weeks old), my son decided he was done nursing. Done as in screaming bloody murder if I tried to get him to latch on. So many people talk about how they have to wean their babies and that the baby loves the comfort, familiarity with mom. Not my child! He decided that milk didn't come out fast enough and is done.

I've been continuing to pump (four, then three, and now I'm trying to get to two times a day), which is not a huge deal, but is annoying to lug the thing back and forth from the office to the house. I find it especially annoying because my supply is so low now that I'm only getting 2 oz per pump session.

My goal all along (even before I knew my milk supply wouldn't be up to par) was the breastfeed for six months. Even though I probably will not make it to that goal, I'm glad for what I have been able to provide for him. And now that I know what I'm doing, maybe I'll be more successful with our next baby.



I have a herniated disc. It's located between L4-L5 which is low on your back, close to the bottom of the spine. In this picture, its the middle disc - the one black part that's pushing to the right white stuff (into my spinal cord). The one above it is how it should look like. The one below it is another small bulge, but is not the herniated one we are concerned with.

I still have some pain, but not much. I do think the PT is helping with that, but now my issue (and bigger concern) is the numbness in my right foot. My doctor is concerned that I will have permanent nerve damage if I don't have surgery. I'm concerned about having back surgery at age 30 and what that will mean for the rest of my life. I also don't really want to walk around with a numb foot.

So, I'm trying other things first. I'm continuing PT, twice a week now instead of just once, to try to increase my core strength. I didn't know that your ab muscles completely separate when you are pregnant, but mine are still not completely back together yet. We are also working on the muscles that wrap around the spine deep in there. I'm doing a lot of bridge exercises and planks to work on these things.

I'm also going to a chiropractor to try decompression treatment to see if they can literally stretch my spine enough to allow the bulge to come back in its happy home all on its own.

In other news - my little chunk baby has rolled over (at 18 weeks old) and is now constantly rolling onto his stomach and refuses to lay on his back. I'm learning how to dress and change a baby that is in upward dog position. We also started feeding him rice cereal last week (19 weeks old) after the all-clear from his pediatrician. We are thinking carrots will be his first veggie, with peas soon to follow. He just needs to master eating with a spoon first.


MRI - bariatric style

Until 2012, I have never been a "patient" at any hospital. I'd never had surgery (still haven't), broken a bone (still haven't), had stitches (check.) or any other sort of procedure. Now that I'm experiencing things as a patient in a hospital that I've worked for is completely eye-opening. I'm experiencing the customer service that I never expected and meeting new people that I might not have worked with.

Today, I went to radiology for my MRI. I talked to the manager last week to find out how realistic their schedule is "on time" in the afternoons. I loathe waiting of any sort, so I know better than to make a 2pm appointment, but that was the "first available" so I took it. The manager moved me up to the 7am - first appointment of the day. I call that a perk of working where I do.

It turned out to be a much better experience than I'd hoped for because they ended up putting me in the bariatric machine. If you've never had an MRI, it's the scan where you lay perfectly still and slide into a tunnel that is usually THISCLOSE to your face. A lot of claustrophobia ensues. In the bariatric machine (for folks weighing 400lbs plus, I think) I had a good 2 feet above my face, so I was perfectly comfortable.

As for the results - we find out more next week when I return to the orthopedic surgeon.



After complaining to some work friends about my back/hip/leg pain, they got me into an orthopedic surgeon at the spine center that same day. I had an x-ray done and they think I bulged a disc in my spine when pushing and that bulge is pressing on my sciatic nerve. There are several options to try knowing what the problem is, with surgery as a last resort. The surgeon said that the best way to heal is to let the body heal itself. We can try more physical therapy and steroid shots too. He wanted to give me a prescription for nerve relaxing pills or pain pills, but I really don't want either, especially while I'm still b-feeding the baby.