Tuesday, September 27, 2011

How do you do it?

Some days I wonder how anyone has more than two children.  I have really been struggling with morning (all day and night) sickness, to the point that I am dehydrated, exhausted, and honestly becoming a very bad mom to my toddler.  She has probably spent more time in front of the TV/Xoom in the past few weeks than in the rest of her life combined.  I feel so guilty dismissing my little girl so that I can attempt to take care of myself.  I know she is missing all the quality time we used to spend together.  Not to mention my poor husband who is suffering from a serious lack of home cooking.
I literally throw up everything!  I will find something that settles in my stomach one day, only to have it come right back up the next.  I have tried every suggestion of morning sickness remedies, sucking on candies, drinking ginger tea, eating soda crackers before getting out of bed, etc.  Nothing works for me.  Am I just overwhelmed with moving, etc?  I don't remember being this sick with my first pregnancy.
Some days I ignore my nausea and try to go about a normal day, only to collapse the minute my husband walks in the door and sleep until the next morning.  I suppose it doesn't help that I live in a foreign country, far away from anyone I know, and without the support of friends or family.
I am counting down the days until my second trimester arrives, hopefully bringing with it a reprieve of all the vomiting!  I have my first OB appointment tomorrow, so we'll see if I am sick enough to require medical help.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

my VERY long day

Since I have been in Germany for three weeks now, I decided it was time to tell the story of my trip getting here.     Due to the Air Force and their delays, we did not get our orders (which are necessary for booking flights) until a month before our departure.  This meant that there was not room on any flights for the dogs, prior to the dates Josh needed to report.  Also, my pet-friendly TLF (hotel) reservations were cancelled by some unhelpful person, so we had nowhere to put them once they arrived.  We opted for Josh to come alone, find us a place to live and get everything set up, then I would have one awful terrible stressful day and bring Ally and the dogs at a later date.  I stayed with family for three weeks prior to flying to Germany.
 I was a bit apprehensive as the day approached, knowing that I would be dealing with a lot.  My day started at 4:30 AM, when I woke up to take the dogs to the airport.  The Air Force booked me on Delta, which does not fly dogs during the summer, so they were flying Continental.  I found the cargo drop-off and filled out the paperwork.  Then a guy helped me finagle them into their kennels and attach all the necessary paperwork.  He also attached zip-ties to all four corners of their doors, which I did not think about until later.  Did I mention it is quite expensive to fly two large dogs across the country?  So I paid the fees (gulp!) and hoped to meet up with them in Baltimore.  Then I drove over to the terminal, parked, attached all 4 suitcases together and rolled through the airport.  Thank goodness Delta did not charge me for my extra luggage (which might be partially because of that video on YouTube of all the army guys returning from a deployment...) which I was not expecting because Delta and I do not have a good track record.
After I finished dragging my four large pieces of luggage through the huge long line to drop it off, my parents showed up with Allison (who I left with them so she could sleep for a few more hours) and we went through security.  Sometimes it is nice to travel with a toddler and not wait in lines.  Many airports have a line for families that is a lot shorter than the regular one.  Such is the case in Salt Lake City, yay!
Unfortunately our 4-hour flight was completely booked.  I decided to bring Ally's stroller and carseat for our upcoming layover so I had a little trouble getting down to the plane.  Plus the gate people neglected to let me board first, so I may have bumped a few legs, shoulders, etc. as I worked my way to the back of the plane with everything, through a full flight.  Why oh why do they board front to back?  I have never understood how that makes sense.
I had just taken a pregnancy test the day before flying, so I knew that I was expecting, but not feeling it yet.  That changed throughout the day as my exhaustion began to set in.  Halfway through the flight, I decided that snacks were just not enough, so I opted to buy one of their boxed lunches.  Of course they ran out before getting to my row towards the back of the plane, and by this time I was desperate for food.  I ended up getting some random snacks in a box (and paying plenty for the privilege!) such as marinated olives and whole grain crackers covered in birdseed.  Seriously Delta.
We landed in Baltimore and that is where my day really began.  Delta (who I will never again voluntarily fly) did NOT transfer my luggage to my connecting flight.  I had to collect my luggage, this time with Allison, and take it to the AMC terminal to check in.  I was hoping that they would let me do so 8+ hours before boarding.  When I approached the military international terminal, I was immediately offered help and snacks.  They checked my orders and took my bags.  I then ran back to the other end of the terminal to collect my dogs, who had a layover in Houston and therefore landed after me.  I picked up the dogs (on big flatbed rolling cart) and took them outside to the pet area so they could relieve themselves.  Then I remembered the zip-ties on all 4 corners of their kennel doors.  Ugh!  Of course I had nothing even remotely sharp with which to cut them (since nothing sharp is allowed to pass through security).  I asked every random stranger who passed until one person finally produced a knife, (not sure where they thought they were going with a knife in an airport, but I didn't ask).  I thanked them profusely and allowed my dogs to run around for a few minutes.  Then I rolled them back to the AMC terminal, where I was informed that I could not check the dogs in for the flight until boarding time.  In 8 hours.  Seriously.  I paid the fees for this flight (did I mention that flying dogs gets really expensive?) and rolled away, piling Allison and her carseat and carryons on top of the kennels.
I had been looking forward to enjoying the comforts of the USO, which has such amenities as couches, beds, movies, snacks, etc. but unfortunately does not allow dogs.  Instead I had to roll my kennels (and carseat, and carry-ons, and toddler) around the airport for hours, trying to find food outside of security and something to entertain.  My flight was scheduled to leave at midnight so I needed distractions, and lots of them.  I had packed a bag full of such distractions, many of them gift-wrapped, so every time Ally got antsy I allowed her to open a "present" and play with it for a while.
Luckily my flight ended up leaving sooner than expected so I dropped of the dogs, put Ally in her pj's, and boarded the flight.  I was hoping for both of us to sleep for the majority of the time, so that we would acclimate quickly to the new time zone.  That did not happen.  We got a few hours of shut-eye, but mostly watched movies and stared at each other, bleary-eyed.   Ally did take a short nap on the shoulder of the (single) young soldier next to her, who was obviously not used to children.  Sorry!  She also threw up twice, which I think was more due to travel than illness.
We landed at Ramstein, where Josh was waiting to meet us.  Unfortunately, he was not allowed into the baggage claim area, where bags were strewn all over the floor.  I claimed the dogs (did I mention that they weigh 80 and 100 pounds?) on another flatbed cart, piled the bags on top of that, rolled the carseat and stroller behind, and stumbled my way out to meet him, maneuvering through all the people and luggage scattered everywhere.
At this point, I was so frustrated and exhausted and gross and hormonal that I might have cried a little bit.  My poor husband (who I had not yet told about the hormonal part) was very sympathetic, loaded the bags and took me to the hotel where I was able to shower and regain some dignity.  I then informed him of the news (which I wanted to do in person) and tried to stay awake the rest of the day.
The End
Oh, and then I started throwing up, and have not stopped since...

Monday, September 5, 2011

jet lag and morning sickness

...not a good combination!
Well it's official, the puking has begun again.  Last time it started at 10 weeks, apparently this child is impatient because I am only 6 weeks along and puking merrily.  I literally get 'morning' sickness, which hopefully subsides as long as I keep my stomach in close proximity to food for the remainder of the day.

And officially, YAY!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

getting settled

So I made it to Germany, with everything in tow.  A few snags along the way, but that is only to be expected.  Now I am trying to recover from jet lag and preparing to move into my house tomorrow!  I was pleased to discover that my German studying has paid off, I was able to successfully communicate with my landlord, who speaks limited English.  I am loving the climate here as well as the beautiful scenery.  It feels great to be done traveling and ready to get settled in.