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y’all may have  noticed that i changed the theme on my blog.  my huzz decided it was time for a new look – something fresh, he said.  i thought he was nuts.  what was wrong with the old look?  but then he started demoing the new themes and i took a liking to this one the same way a hermit crab takes to a shell.  so there ya have it.  enjoy!

*you may have noticed this doesn’t sound like the way i would normally write….that’s b/c my huz wrote this.  i humored him and left it just the way he wrote it, but do need to explain the “y’all” and the hermit crab comment…

we recieved our baby bear’s birth certificate in the mail the other day…and may i just say, i love getting mail in her name!  so fun.

as i was looking the cert over i noticed it says “date processed 5/17/10”. 

that was my mom’s birthday.

i love that my baby’s birth certificate was processed on my mom’s birthdate.  it’s just one of those things that brings me comfort, even though to anyone else it might not mean anything.  it means something to me.

i thought, based on my experience of our first week together, i’d write out my list of “essentials”—would-not-want-to-do-without-these-things—when it comes to giving yourself the space and freedom to drink in the magic of the first days of life…pure magic…pure love…pure ecstasy. sacred days.

  • find a room in your home that can be converted into a dedicated space for “baby central”; this means having all the necessary baby goods within an arms reach, so to speak (i.e. diapering station, chair/foot rest/pillows for nursing/feeding, bassinette, etc accessible without needing to leave the room, go up and down stairs, etc.).  it also means mom resting, partner tending to mom’s needs around food, water (lots of water!), and ice cream–of course.
  • don’t bother fussing with dressing baby those first few days.  for one, they don’t usually like to be dressed and undressed, but even moreso…save yourself the extra work b/c your lactation consultant will more than likely tell you to feed skin to skin, especially when you and your little one are in those early days of learning.  instead of clothes, swaddle your baby up in a couple of flannel blankets and maybe put a kiddo.potomus swaddle over that…keeps them warm; saves you energy and the stress of hearing your baby wail while you change their outfit.  plus, this makes diaper changing that much easier, too.
  • speaking of diapers, don’t stress if your baby doesn’t poop right away after the meconium has passed, if you are breastfeeding your baby, that is.  according to my naturopathic pediatrician, bf babies always poop, it’s just a matter of when…our little bear didn’t poop for a few days and i was worried, but oh dear let me tell you…………..everything is working just fine in that dept now–more on that later! (of course, always follow your instincts and check with your pediatrician, just in case.)
  • hunker down…cozy up…and fall in love with your baby and your partner…the rest of the world can wait b/c this is your time to bond as a family.  visitors are well-meaning, but will only cause stress in the long run…even though unintentionally.  these days will go so quickly and trust me…everyone will still be hankerin’ to see your little bundle a few weeks later.  babies just do that to people.
  • and that reminds me, i can’t tell you the stress you’ll save yourself if you stock up on freezer meals before your baby is due…when making dinner, just double your recipe and freeze one.  you’ll not regret this one bit…even if you have a whole host of people dropping off meals just after your baby is born, eventually that will stop, but you’ll still need to eat!
  • take turns with your partner in caring for your baby so that each of you can go to the guest room, the sofa, or an air mattress—a tiny bit away from your sweet baby and her precious noises that will keep you from being able to truly fall asleep—not forever, just long enough to get a nap so that you’ll be able to handle a potential crying jag or diaper blowout with grace…not to mention being able to face the challenges of breastfeeding if you and your baby need extra practice with latching on, etc.  sleep deprivation can make us begin to feel anxious and overwhelmed and paranoid, among other more difficult to manage emotional states of being…by giving yourself a slot of time for “interrupted” (not sure there’s such a thing anymore!) sleep.  you might be surprised how difficult it is to relax into sleep when you can hear your baby’s every sound.  i know i was.
  • with regard to breastfeeding, if you are planning to do so………..have the name and number of a lactation consultant handy in case you get home and bump into some difficulties.  even better, contact her before your baby is born to see if she will do home visits to your area and to see if you feel comfortable with them over the phone, etc.  you may need the help and you won’t want to delay on getting it if you start to feel like your nipples are about to be bitten off!  when the breastfeeding is painful, it’s very easy to begin to resent your baby’s need to be fed and it can also  cause off the charts anxiety, etc.  not to mention, the interference with the all-important and amazing bonding process.  plus, when the baby is properly latched, you will feel a delightful sense of feel-good hormones coursing through your veins—now, why delay that experience?! 🙂

so, these are my top essentials for making your first week just that much more simple and exceedingly, delightfully, deliciously magical.  what things would you add to the list of must have’s/must do’s?

i’m so happy to report that at my appt yesterday–two weeks after the initial scare–my blood pressure has returned to my usual 120’s over 70’s and there was no sugar or protien in my urine….which means i didn’t have to have my blood drawn again….big celebration over that little piece of good fortune!!

thank you nina planck and your book real food for mothers and babies!  i can’t say enough good things about this author or the books i’ve read of hers…i know i’m a broken record on this.  what can i say?

my pregnancy ticker says “14 days until my due date”!  how did that happen so fast??!!

38 weeks, here i come!

i’m finally writing a new post………please do forgive my silence.  a few days after we arrived home from our fabulous vacation, i came down with a nasty cold which i am still fighting at the moment.  (awesome home remedy: eating raw garlic cloves—eat two of those babies and your nasal congestion will be all but eradicated for a few hours!  thanks t.)

now that i’m back, i’d like to fill you all in on some highlights and lowlights of the past few weeks:

highlight:our trip to maui was awesome.  even with the in-laws.  pretty amazing and i know my mom would never have believed i’d say such a kind thing about my in-laws a few years ago…i guess time changes things sometimes.  that being said, i’m not volunteering to take another trip with them anytime soon—they are still the in-laws; let’s not get crazy.  maui was a wonderful place to be…so calming and warm and lovely….i’m all but obsessed with returning next year with our little baby bear.

lowlight: due to flying and the 60+ degree temp change, i was incredibly swollen and uncomfortable in the hand, foot, leg and ankle regions.  oh my.  thanks to a phone call to my sister, i was equipped with ways to soothe my aching lower half.  the huz expressed concern that i might not be able to wear my rings for the rest of the pregnancy–something i was fearing myself–but alas, a day or so after returning home my body returned to its usual non-puffy/swollen limbed self.  rings are generally not a problem again.  flying was very rough on me and i have no wish to do so again during this pregnancy—even if i won a free trip to maui.  that’s how uncomfortable my body was.

highlight:  a long-awaited, dream-come-true moment happened right there on luscious kaanapali beach.  there i was sporting my adorable bathing suit (tip–forget the icky maternity suits.  buy a regular suit you like in a few sizes up from your pre-pregnancy weight.  i was so so so glad i did) and watching my huz snorkel around (i was too tired and the waves were too big for me to comfortably join him that time).  i was also watching a man play with his son in the water and on the beach.  that kid was fearless.  all of a sudden this happened:

man:  how far along are you?

me: oh!  i feel like i’ve been waiting forever for someone to ask me that.  i thought sure that by now i was looking pregnant, but so far no one’s asked me until now.  thank you!  oh, i’m 5 1/2 months or so.  (i was so happy, i almost forgot to answer the actual question.)

huz: (he was popped up from snorkeling and happened to catch the man’s question to me)  you just made her day.  you have no idea.

i was so so so happy.  to this day, he remains the only person to ask me of his own accord with out a tip off from me or the huz first alluding to our little baby bundle.

lowlight:  i’m sick.  with a nasty cold that really has me knocked down.  last night when i couldn’t breathe and therefore couldn’t sleep i thought i might go crazy.  i was considering drastic measures in the attempt to help myself breathe so i could sleep.  for the record, even as sick as i feel i didn’t follow thru on my plans to shove a hanger up my nose.  even in this state i could see that the risks far exceed the benefits.  but there was a moment, however brief, that the idea sounded quite appealing.  sleep deprivation can make you think/do crazy things.

highlight:  a visit to the midwife last week revealed i’m measuring 26 1/2 weeks.   to which she responded, “perfect.”  that made me happy…almost as happy as hearing her lovely little heartbeat and seeing the huz’s face light up in hearing it, too.

lowlight: we have to wait another month to hear it again.

highlight: she’s bopping around inside of me quite regularly.  it’s exciting to feel her, but sometimes it’s a little surprising or unsettling, too.  like when i’m in a meeting and all of a sudden she gets a real burst of strength and kicks significantly harder than usual.  i can’t exactly blurt out, “OH!  hi baby!”  but it does feel that surprising to me sometimes and for those who know me, you know it’s difficult for me to hold a response in!  i’m doing my best when necessary. 🙂

i suppose that about covers it for now.  these days i’m mostly on the couch or eating raw garlic or blowing my nose or using the netti pot or struggling through grading a paper or two–i simply must get them done, but how with this foggy mind?!

i hope you are all well and i’m slowly but surely catching up on my blog reading….i’ll be back to commenting again soon, i promise!

yesterday the huz and i went off to our first hypnobirthing class…very exciting!  sure, i was by far the earliest in my pregnancy compared to the other women there, but we purposely wanted to get started early–i want as much practice at relaxation and meditation as possible to give me the best shot at a naturally pain-reduced labor and delivery as possible.

 

so far i’m really enjoying the relaxation exercises.  i know this will come as a big surprise, but i’m naturally an anxious person…i’m definitly not naturally relaxed, that’s for sure!  but i really get into visualizing soft thoughts in my brain and calm, peaceful rain falling all around me.

 

another thing i really get into is watching birthing videos.  in class yesterday we got to watch multiple woman birth their babies using the hypnobirthing techniques.  it was amazing to see the women calmly, yet intensely, allowing their bodies to push their babies out rather than forcing and straining and fighting and bursting blood vessels in their faces from all the pushing, pushing, pushing.

 

it was more like watching an animal birth their babies–no drama, just intense focus coupled with a belief in the body’s ability to do the birthing.

 

and another thing that excites me is this:

 

 

let me tell you, if an orgasmic birth is possible i’m making that my goal!  i just got word from the library that a copy of the dvd is waiting on hold for me.  i’ll give a movie review after viewing….sounds too good to be true, but i’m sure open to an orgasmic birthing experience if at all possible for me!

 

my huz, on the other hand is a little nervous about such talk….yesterday as we were walking into the building where our hypnobirthing class was to be held he stopped and said nervously, “they aren’t going to be talking about orgasmic birthing today, are they?  that’s not what this class is about, is it?  if it is, i’m not ready for that.” 

 

hilarious. 

 

i’ll keep you all posted on whether the movie’s a must see or not.  here’s to happy birthing for all!

i’m a rather superstitious person these days…maybe it comes from my mom.  whenever i’d say something halfway morbid (which happens a lot), she’d say, “oh, don’t say it!”  the message was loud and clear:

 

be careful what you say because whatever you say will make things happen.

 

and then i’ve added this twist to the superstitions of my mother so that i also fear whatever i don’t say might have huge earth shattering consequences…or if i don’t say something it might go beautifully….or, or, or…the list of irrational thoughts goes on and on.

 

so, naturally, i’m contemplating all kinds of bargains i can make with myself to guarantee a happy healthy outcome to this pregnancy, such as:

 

1.  i won’t tell anyone (okay, anyone other than those whom i’ve already told, which beside the blogosphere has been only two people…well, four really because there were those two people i kind of blurted it out to yesterday–one of whom i’d never met before, but i had to—she is a fellow fertility hunter…and—i just remembered—my acupuncturist…i told her, too, but she doesn’t really count because i had to tell her…and dr. naturo, too. )…so, where was i?  yes, i won’t tell anyone else because that will mean i won’t miscarry.

 

2. i won’t say anything about how sometimes i feel afraid of miscarrying a fourth time.

 

3. i won’t talk about pregnancy, miscarrying or about how much i’d love to hold this little one in my arms one day…say, like 35 weeks from now.

 

but i know that no matter the bargains, no matter how much healthy food i consume, no matter how often i visualize myself with a baby belly or a baby in my arms….for the most part, all of this is out of my control…i can only do the few things i can do (and i get that they are important pieces of my fertility puzzle), but there is no guaranteed outcome.

 

the only thing that is for sure is that there will be an outcome…and one way or another we will someday near or far know the answer to that huge looming question that taunts me in the wee hours of the morning…will this pregnancy go to full term?

here’s the deal: if you are reading this and you don’t know me personally you may skip to the end of this post.

however, if you are reading this and you do know me personally, i.e. you are my sister, one of my dear friends from college, you are a friend and colleague, or a friend and colleague’s wife, or a current client (just kidding on the current client bit…i can’t even begin to explain to you how inappropriate it would be for me to advertise my blog to my clients…i just threw that in there for shock value!).  if so, please read the following options very carefully:

1. you may move your cursor to the upper right hand corner of your screen right now and click the little red box with the “x” to close the window and be none-the-wiser.  i would recommend this option for those of you who maybe let’s say have a difficult time keeping a secret….if confidentiality is not your thing, well, then own that about yourself and do us both a favor and close this window asap.  (as an aside, if confidentiality is not your thing and you’re one of my therapist colleagues, i’d like to say with all due respect: YOU ARE IN THE WRONG LINE OF WORK!  own it and move on.) 🙂

2. if you choose to continue reading because you feel you are adept at keeping confidential information confidential, you may continue reading this and all future posts with the understanding and agreement that you will keep what you’re about to read to yourself.  this means that you will not mention anything about me (ie information related to this blog) to anyone…not your spouse, your hairdresser, your pet snake, no one….not even in your dreams.  and not even to me—which actually goes beyond the usual bounds of confidentiality!  even though you know i already know what you’re about to read, you are hereby promising to behave as though you know nothing about what you will so obviously wish to let me know that you know about me.  this includes not leaving any comments on this blog.  i do not want to catch you even giving a hint of body language that would let me know you’ve been reading this blog.  that’s a pretty tall order.  if you aren’t up for the task, i understand…but if not, follow the instructions listed above and click the “x” in the upper right hand corner.

if you should decide to enter this agreement, i would like to inform you of the only instances in which you would be legally permitted to break our confidentiality agreement….

–if you have reason to believe i am a danger to myself and/or others.

–if you have been subpeonaed by the Court and ordered to release information about me.

–if you have a signed release of information from me stating you have my permission to share information about me.

i think that about covers it and i can tell you right now that none of the above circumstances will come to pass.

so……….if you are ready and willing to accept the limits of this confidentiality agreement, read on.

the results of my handy-dandy internet hpt’s are in: two pink lines.

i’m helping the famous maddie potty train when i’m with her three days a week…she a smart cookie and under ordinary circumstances would probably take to going on the potty like a fish to water….or something like that.

 

but these are not normal circumstances.  as much as we love each other, i’m not her mommy.  and now maddie’s adjusting to her mom heading back to work part-time, so the potty training is a bit of an overload it seems.

 

but the little cutie pie is trying her hardest to make it happen.  the other day she was sitting and sitting and waiting and sitting and trying and waiting and sitting.  but nothing was tinkling, if you know what i mean.

 

i asked her what she was feeling.  she threw her head back in utter exhaustion and said,

 

“i’m so tired of trying!”

 

well, i can certainly relate to that!  i was feeling a bit desperate to help her, grabbing for straws…anything to make it happen for her–anything!

 

and that was i said those six little words.  in the midst of my desperation and deep desire to say or do something to help her i said the thing i hate to hear and vowed i’d never say to anyone—ever.  i said,

 

“just relax and it will happen.”

 

immediately, i heard the irony.  i could not believe i said those words!  i hate hearing people say i need to relax…try going on vacation…blah, blah, blah.  and now i’m the one who, desperate to help someone i love so dearly, said those ridiculous words.

 

in that moment, i think we both knew that a little relaxation was not going to make it happen.

those darn duggers.  they are so odd to me.  20 of the most bizarre people…and counting.

 

so, i got wind through a commercial i saw that the newlyweds are “finally” pregnant.  well, you know where this is going.  i set the tivo to record it and this afternoon i sat down to watch it. 

 

barf.

 

(if you’ve never watched this show, i’m sorry if you’re confused, but i don’t want to explain all the characters…watch it at your own risk.)

 

the oldest son got married at the ripe ol’ age of 20 or maybe it was 21.  the bride had probably just turned 18.  they are very, very young…too young to get married, in my opinion, but then what do i know?

 

at one point during the show, anna (the newlywed) said, “i’ve just been so upset after all these months of trying to get pregnant that i couldn’t even bear to look at the results anymore.  i make josh look at them and tell me.”

 

my gosh, i just don’t know how little josh and anna made it through those devastating four months of trying to conceive (nevermind that statistics show there’s only a 25% chance of becoming pregnant in any given cycle–but don’t quote me on it).  somehow they got through and they even filmed the first visit to the doctor’s office.

 

needless to say, i’m a little annoyed (to put it lightly).  why did i even bother to put myself through watching that?  the show annoyed me well before the odd couple joined the cast and now i’m actually recording it to torture myself by following their pregnancy?

 

i’m through with the duggars.  enough is enough!