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first, happy 30th birthday, MEG.!!!

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obviously, we all know the likelihood that a baby will be born on her due date is very slim…in fact, only 5%-ish of babes actually are.

this means, i am now moving into the majority!  i thought all along that she’d be born yesterday, the 30th.  so that’s what i considered my due date (based on ovulation and her measurements at our first u/s at 6wks2d)…my midwives have always gone by the 31st b/c that’s her due date based on the first day of my lmp.  however, at my 12wk u/s the tech tried to tell me my due date was moved up to the 20th of march or something like that!  imagine how disappointed i’d be by now if my midwives and i had gone with that date!? 

of course, we knew it was impossible for me to be due that many days earlier, as it’s no mystery—none at all—as to when i ovulated and such.  i’m really really really thankful we didn’t change my date back then b/c although i was excited to think we’d meet her sooner, by now they’d be talking a hospital transfer and induction…two things i’m hoping to avoid if at all possible. 

i’m using this time to practice patience and trusting in my body and this baby to know what to do about birthing and when.  i keep letting her know that whenever she wants to come out she’s welcome and will be received with joy and love, but if it’s not time, it’s not time and that’s okay.  we have several more days before it becomes urgent in any way, as long as she remains healthy and isn’t distressed.

but i will say, even with all of this practicing and all of my good intentions toward patience and everything else, i’m sad to see these days come and go without her arrival.  i’m increasingly feeling like staying in and hunkering down…driving sounds miserable to me…so i don’t want to go anywhere or do anything that involves getting in the car…unless we’re heading to the birth center, that is!  and each time i feel a contraction i get excited…then sad when they peeter out.  so, it’s hard sometimes to not want to pressure the baby or doubt that my body knows what it’s doing…after all, staying pregnant was difficult, what if my body doesn’t know how to birth?!?

but it does.  and things will get moving when the time is right.  i’m just hoping it’s soon b/c i can’t wait to check this little one out!

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holy crap.

my midwives say 8 days, but i say 7. 

7 days….more or less.  sometimes i think more.  sometimes i think less.

last night as we were settling down for the night, my huz said, “we made it to 39 weeks!  remember when we were at 9 wks?”

at 9 wks we were visiting with family in the hills of tennessee.  i remember when i told my dad that week that i was pregnant again and a flash of excitement crossed his face, rapidly followed by a worried expression while saying, “how are you feeling?”  obviously he was happy for us and worried, too.  just as we were…but by that point, we’d seen and heard her precious little heartbeat pounding away for the first time…something we’d never seen in our previous pregnancies.  i remember worrying back then about every little thing…now i just worry about every other little thing.

i was worried about flying.  about going through the security screening machine thingie (which i refused and opted for a pat down instead…whether or not this pleased the security staff).  i worried about eating enough antioxidants.  i worried when i’d forget to drink my herbal supplement.  i had a horrible time sleeping through the night, especially falling asleep in the first place.  i made a million trips to the bathroom every night.  and we had fun too, believe it or not. 

at 9wks, i thought 39wks would never come.  back in august, march seemed an eternity away.  yet here we are…facing laboring and birthing…preparing our hearts and our home to welcome this little wrinkly pink wonder into our lives…practicing with the moby wrap…and, of course, my huz’s continued practice burping of our cats.

what a difference 30 wks of healthy pregnancy has made in easing our anxiety levels…and yet, many days there’s still plenty of worry to go around.  but not yesterday.

yesterday, at my 39wk-ish midwife appt i learned:

fundus height is 39cm (perfect!)

bp is 124/66 (lovely)

no protein or sugars in my urine (yay!)

baby’s heart rate is in the 150’s (strong and beautiful)

her head is “very low” (getting ready to labor and birth!)

and, finally–though i knew this already and did not learn it at my appt–i have no (pregnancy induced) stretch marks to date!!  this is perhaps the most shocking news of all to me.  i once read that if you have stretch marks from adolescent growing or extra weight, that you’d get them in pregnancy; if not, you won’t.  doesn’t matter if you use creams or not, etc.  well, i am living proof……(so far)…….this isn’t true.  so, if you’re pregnant and feeling some burning or discomfort as your belly grows, i highly recommend applying burts bees belly balm liberally morning and night!  and i do mean liberally.

that’s all i know for now…39wks and counting.  i’ll keep y’all posted!

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 in the throws of contemplating whether or not to do the glucose tolerance test.  i have the juice and the directions on what to do prior to my next appt, should i decide to do the test.  but i can’t decide.  i just keep going back and forth. 

presently, i’m thinking this: i will take the test simply because if i don’t take the test and i go into pre-term labor, i will blame myself for not taking the test.  quite frankly, i don’t need one more thing to guilt myself about in this life….so the more i can cut back on providing myself the opportunity to do just that, the better.

but i can guarantee you that tomorrow i will have another idea about what i should do regarding that stupid test…thank you midwives for giving me the choice…that really uncomplicates my life; i’m so grateful…i’m being sarcastic to a point…most of the time i truly am grateful for the freedom they give me to make this pregnancy my own and to be in charge of what happens to my body.

either way, i will have to get poked at my next check.  i’m not looking forward to another blood draw, although i must say i’ve only been poked one other time so far during this pregnancy, which is less than i have been in any given six month stretch for a while now.  this is something to be grateful for, let me assure you!  anyway, they are going to test my vitamin d levels, as my naturopath let me know there is some research to suggest (this does not mean there is an absolute direct correlation) that vitamin d deficiancy in pregnancy may be linked to autism.  i don’t care whether or not this is true, i don’t want to take any chances and i was already low in vitamin d prior to this pregnancy, so to me it’s worth getting stuck with a needle for that.

all in all, i’m 27wks1d and happy for it.  i can’t believe how quickly time is flying.  and every little kick is like a dream come true…except the kicks to the cervix….now that is just downright uncomfortable!

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!

last night we had our second prenatal exam…our midwife was running late–very late, but i didn’t care.  i just wanted to hear our baby’s heartbeat.

 

as the midwife was coming out to the lobby to get us, i heard her say, “I hope lilly hasn’t left yet.”  are you kidding me?!  i wasn’t going anywhere….not until i heard that whoosh, whoosh, whoosh, no matter how long it took her.

 

it turned out to be a good thing she was running late anyway b/c my huz was stuck in terrible traffic on his way there.  plus, once he met me at the office it was nice for us to have a chance to catch up with each other before heading in to the meeting.

 

anyway, anyway, anyway……….blah, blah, blah.  here’s the long and the short of it: we heard our baby bear’s heartbeat again. YAY!  the baby kept moving around so that we’d briefly hear the whooshing and then–poof!  it was gone.  so funfunfun!

 

now i’m counting down until november 6th for our ultrasound….is it a boy or a girl?!  i have a guess—what do you think?

first, thanks so much to each of you for your kind thoughts and wishes, especially as we embarked on our first trip (of what we hope to be many more) to our midwife.

 

(MEG., i smiled when i read your comment because i was trying to inspire you all to begin singing the wizard of oz theme song in my previous post…..thanks for playing along with me!)

 

so, here’s the deal….when you call to make an appointment and the receptionist uses the term consultation, you should take her seriously.  no matter how desperately you’re hoping for the word consultation to equal exam, i’m here to tell you………they are two separate things.

 

all of this to say, while the appointment was exciting and informative, it was not an exam…so there was no comforting, reassuring news to be had for me in terms of calming my fears about potential complications with my pregnancy, etc.

 

that aside, the birthing center is a warm and cozy space.  the midwife we met was kind, forthcoming and professional.  i am grateful to live in such a progressive city in terms of all the alternative options we have available to us…….i know that not every state is so welcoming of midwifery, homebirths, etc.  and not every family desires an out-of-hospital birth, but since my huz and i do, it’s nice we live in a place where it is a possibility.

 

not that we’re planning for a home birth.  my huz and i tend a little too much toward anxiety to be calm and relaxed and safe-feeling enough to embark on such an endeavor.  i most surely wish i were a more laid back, relaxed individual (for a million different reasons), but i’ve come to terms with the fact that i’m not.  i’m me and i need to take good care of what i need by first accepting what i am and am not capable of at this point….home birthing is out of my league right now.  but i love that it’s an option….a possibility that many women have chosen. 

 

here are some of the things i learned in our consultation last night that i’m most excited about:

 

  • they routinely practice delayed cord clamping
  • my huz is welcome to catch our baby if he’d like to
  • they don’t announce the sex of the baby; we are free to discover this together as a family (i’m still undecided as to whether i want to find out the gender through ultrasound…i go back and forth.  my huz wants to know…maybe he could know and i could not know.  stop laughing at me, those of you who know me in real life and know that would NEVER work for me!)
  • we are welcome to bathe our baby after delivery if we’d like to
  • the tests and shots and things that are routinely administered after birth in the hospital are only performed by our choosing
  • water birth is an option
  • the center offers classes on baby wearing (slings, etc.), hypnobirthing, breastfeeding, etc.

 

i know there’s more, but i can’t think of it right now.  i just liked her a lot.  i hope we like her colleagues equally as much, since we’ll be working with a team of three…any one of whom will be on call when we get to the point of delivery (here is where i cross myself even though i’m not catholic and hope desperately that we get to the point of delivering a healthy, living baby).

 

we also had to make what the midwife referred to as our first parenting decision last night…well, we didn’t have to make it last night, but we did need to make it soon and we both agreed pretty readily on what we wanted to do.  if we’d like to do the combined screening for down’s syndrome and neural tube defects, we need to do it fairly soon, as in next week or so.  this involves a blood draw (of which we all know i’m so fond) and an ultrasound (and i am fond of these—at least, i was after the last one!).  we’ve decided to go ahead with the screening.  it won’t provide any definitive answers, in the sense that if the results come back positive it doesn’t necessarily mean we will have a child with down’s or spina bifida.  it does mean, however, that we’d most likely go on to having the amnio to find out more definitively.

 

on one hand, it could very well cause us much ado about nothing….say, if we get a positive screening and it turns out all is well.  on the other hand, we get another look at the baby to see, hopefully, that s/he is developing normally, etc.

 

well, you know i’m a sucker for another look at this little one.  there’s no way i’m going to wait if i don’t have to.  i do need to check with my insurance to see that they cover this screening.  if not, i suppose it would depend on cost, etc.

 

so, now you are fully in the know.  this is where we are in a nutshell: 10w2d, planning to go ahead with midwives and birthing center option with my first real appointment/exam to be scheduled soon (as in a week or two), and potentially will be doing the combined screening in the next week or two.

 

i need a rest just thinking about everything we’re going to be doing in the next couple of weeks!

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