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Complications, a Boy and a Couch

I only spent two weeks in the bay area this month between Philadelphia trips. I had a couple packed weeks planned, dinners with local friends, work on the house, a big project at work to pour my focus into. I did almost none of it.

The morning after our return, I had an episode of bleeding and severe cramps. I called the on call doctor and at first was going to let it pass, but as the pain increased I had MJ take me to the ER. It was a subchorionic hemorrhage (subchorionic hematoma). They did an ultrasound in the ER, the fetus was fine and with the bleeding subsiding I was cleared to go home after four hours, with a letter excusing me from work for the rest of the week and a modified bed rest plan. Since I work from home most of the time, and could focus on lower stress work, I negotiated an adjustment to the no work stipulation and worked with my employer to arrange half days for the week. I spent my resting time finishing a book and catching up on shows I hadn’t made time for in months. I also caught a cold mid-week, which really pushed me into resting more so I could cope with that. On Thursday I went in for a regular pregnancy check-in appointment with my doctor and she confirmed everything looked OK, and assured me that this incident didn’t indicate that I’d continue having a difficult pregnancy and everything could very well be fine moving forward. She did advise I continue to rest through Monday though, so I don’t aggravate anything while I heal up and hopefully reabsorb the rest of the hematoma.

This past Thursday I saw another doctor for a scheduled amniocentesis that we’re having done because I’m over 35. Unfortunately the doctor could still see the hematoma on the ultrasound and he advised that we wait until it’s gone to do the procedure so we don’t risk more complications. I was disappointed, but agreed to have some blood work done in the meantime. It was also reassured that everything looks good and the only reason we’re doing this is because of my age. The appointment wasn’t a total waste though, we learned the gender, we’re having a boy! I would have loved to geek out with a little girl child, but I’m happy either way, even though, as one of three girls, I’m not quite sure what to do with a boy. We also got more ultrasound pictures, and they did a 3D ultrasound that actually didn’t come out totally creepy.

So in spite of this scare, it looks like things are on track. It was a wake-up call though. I’ve never been particularly gentle with my body, and I did spend the week previous in Philadelphia moving a lot of stuff as we prepared for movers to come and help us load the container we shipped out west. None of the doctors believe that caused the hematoma, but I probably do need to be more gentle with myself now that I’m host to another living thing, as there are things I can do that would cause complications. I also had to come to terms with some loss of control. There was nothing I could have done differently to prevent this, most women who have difficult pregnancies aren’t at fault. I had plans of being some kind of pregnancy super woman, but it’s not really up to me. I have plans for this fall and chances are it’ll be fine to keep all my obligations, but I have to be prepared for some scaling back and being more selective about what I do if that’s what my doctor says is required for everything to go well.

All that behind us, I did get out a little. After the modified bed rest wound down I was feeling quite cooped up, so MJ and I spent lunch over the weekend at Chabot Lake enjoying some burgers from the little cafe there. It was fun to get out and see a bit more of our little town, and get out in the sun for a bit.

On Friday I also finally had a sofa bed delivered that we ordered back in May. We had expected to receive it back in June or July, but delays from the manufacturer meant that it was several weeks later than their outside estimate. Thankfully they ended up giving us free delivery when I explained that I was now too pregnant to help haul a couch up a flight of stairs. One of the many benefits of working with a local furniture shop that wants to build a relationship with their customers, I was grateful for the accommodation and we’ll shop there again.

I’m also really excited to have the sofa bed in my home office! We’re planning on doing some renovations, so the furniture situation house-wide isn’t really settled yet, but my office won’t be changing and it’s the one place where we could confidently make some decisions. The sofa bed is a Serta Augustine, so it’s built well and incredibly comfortable whether in couch or full size bed mode. Caligula likes it too.

I also got some towels for the bathroom attached to my office, purple to go with the light green tiles. I never thought I’d be so happy about towels, but it’s nice to have some control over things getting to a finished state there, the last big thing in that bathroom is getting a pair of towel bars installed.

I got to play with my GPD Pocket some this week too. I fiddled with xrandr a bit to get a startup script that adjusts my resolution. While I absolutely appreciate the high resolution that it supports when I plug it into a monitor, 1920×1200 is simply too tiny for a 7″ screen. I used cvt to grab the mode lines, and now run xrandr upon boot to add a couple more reasonable resolutions to my display and then set it to 1280×800. Even at that resolution I find myself bumping up the font size in some applications, but it’s working well for me.

So well, in fact, that I’ve written this entire blog post in a tiny American Airlines coach seat on my GPD Pocket. Finally a solution for in flight computing that works for me again! I used to travel with my little pink Dell Mini9, I loved that netbook. But the age of the netbooks is behind us, and since my Mini9 stopped holding a charge, I’ve been searching for a new solution. These coach seats are too small for me to use my regular ThinkPad, especially when the person in front of me reclines their seat. I’ve tried a few variations of Android tablets, and even my phone, with a nice Lenovo bluetooth keyboard, but the mobile experience is horrendous for everything, even replying to emails in any long format way. Plus, I lack the proper Linux environment I’m familiar with for any real work. Normally I’d just shell into one of my servers for that, but on airplane WiFi, that option is more frustrating than compelling. The keyboard on the GPD Pocket leaves much to be desired for writing a lot, but it has been quite usable so far. I’m also happy with the battery life so far on this little device, I’ve been running it with basic use and WiFi for over an hour now and it claims to only be down to 90%, though we’ll see long term how that goes.

As I mentioned, my time in California is sandwiched between trips to Philadelphia, where I’m flying to now. I’ll be there for a week, getting a bed delivered, taking the car in for a checkup, overseeing some work by a local handyman. I’ll also be visiting with some people, MJ is joining me on Thursday, and on Saturday I’m giving a talk at FOSSCON before we’re flying home on Sunday for a couple days. It should be a good week.