Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Pregnancy: Week 35

Apologies for the consistently late posts every week. I usually have the post ready to go by Monday, but it's those darn belly shots that we keep forgetting to do before the sun goes down.

Productivity is the word of the week! As I mentioned in the Nursery Snapshots post, I've been plowing through baby preparations as of late. From my perspective, I've still got a ways to go before I'll feel ready, but we're definitely getting there.

The biggest accomplishment of this week was getting nearly everything we need. From a breast pump to cloth diapering supplies, we are looking in good shape to welcome our little lady into the world. We were fortunate to be given a few gift cards, so we used those to help subsidize one final buy-out of our registries. It's always a fun day when you come home to a stack of boxes filled with cute baby gear! Those are my sad and empty flower pots that haven't seen a flower yet this season.

While the week was certainly productive, this weekend marked the climax of nesting. We took our last trip to Ikea, washed every baby item in the house, cooked, cleaned, grocery shopped, worked on the nursery, etc., etc. We even made 15-ish ice cube trays of pesto in between it all. I'm not sure Papa K and I have had a more productive weekend than this in the history of our marriage. Here's to many more!

New Ikea shelves for the video monitor to sit on!

I'm planning to update my goals before baby in a post soon, but some of the more notable outstanding to-do's right now include: washing baby things (finished this weekend!), packing the hospital bags, tying together the nursery, and RESTING. Thankfully I've accomplished a lot of the more tedious tasks like making a list of everything I want/need to bring to the hospital, buying the things I didn't have (a good toiletry bag, disposable nursing pads, nursing tanks, etc.), and picking out LB's first outfits—okay, maybe that isn't so tedious.  

I'm trying so hard to stay positive about pregnancy and really soak up what a blessing and joy it is to carry a baby, but there are some aspects that are just getting challenging. I'm sure you can imagine that my mind is totally preoccupied at this point. And while I'm thankful for my job, I'm totally ready to move onto the next season of life and am finding it challenging to stay mentally "in the game". I want to work hard at wherever the Lord has me, so I'm going to finish strong, but I'm not saying it's easy. It definitely helps to have my squirmy little friend with me all day though :)

Physical changes are rapid fire these days too. My shirts are covering less and less of my belly, most of my maternity pants don't work for sitting in all day long, and I'm down to one pair of shoes—flip flops—which I guess aren't really shoes at all. The swelling is seriously blowing my mind. It seemed to happen overnight when I woke up one morning and felt like I had been in a fist fight. I couldn't figure out what it was at first, but each day kept getting worse and worse until finally I tried to take my ring off last weekend and it was nearly stuck on my finger. It's officially off for now with a blingy rock from Target in it's place. My feet are in the same condition and sometimes unrecognizable when I look down, although they don't ache like my hands do.

Sleep also isn't great. I wake up every time I need to roll over, which is A LOT, but thankfully can usually go right back to sleep. Once I hit 4–5 a.m. though I usually have a tough time getting back to sleep. Some mornings I just lay there, some I fall back asleep, some I get up, and then there was that one really bad morning that I just lost it and cried on the couch for an hour. That was after almost a week of not being able to go back to sleep after 4 a.m., mind you. Then of course there are the countless pee trips, achy hips and slight nausea (hello, first trimester), but whose keeping track...

Regardless of my woes, Baby is most likely at her full height, around 5.5 pounds, and getting chubbier every day—great news! We had Centering this week and learned that my belly is still measuring right on track, but I'm rooting for 1–2 weeks early. Next week I'm planning to start taking Evening Primrose Oil and getting more serious about the natural labor preparation methods I've learned (acupuncture, massage, exercise, eating lots of dates and pineapple, squatting poses, and doing the deed—just keeping it real...). They say it's common for first time moms to be a week or so late, but I know so many people who have been a week early too.

We had Centering this week, and I learned that I've gained around five pounds since my last appointment, but that's not surprising since we ate our way through Portland the weekend before. My current weight is up 29.5 pounds from pre-pregnancy, which is still in the range of where I should to be. Actually, my perspective on pregnancy weight gain has significantly shifted now that I've gone through it along side so many other women. I definitely believe that our bodies all handle this huge physical change differently, and that gaining more than the recommended 25–35 pounds is so common and not an indicator of poor health. In fact, 25 seems pretty low to me now!

As promised, here are our Centering notes from our appointment two weeks ago on 8/29. This class was lead by Maggie, who was one of the midwives we hadn't met yet. I think we've met them all now.
  • We discussed name thievery—telling your name before the baby is born and someone taking it!
  • We also talked about being thoughtful when choosing a name and thinking ahead to what they might be nicknamed and called in school. Arthur spoke up about how he HATED his name growing up because he would get teased (think Arthur the aardvark), but now he loves it and it's a great way for people to remember him (King, Arthur). 
  • We don't get cervical checks before labor in the midwifery. I think this is good for going with the flow and not having expectations. Whereas, most OBs will check at each appointment starting at 36 weeks. 
  • The placenta will usually come out within 30 minutes. I will push it out during a contraction. After it's out, my uterus will be "massaged" to encourage it to shrink up.
  • The vacuum will be used over forceps, but only if the baby is almost out and in distress. 
  • The not great news...there is a 17–20% c-section rate in the midwifery. This totally shocked me and is way higher than I would have thought. This is definitely a byproduct of being in a hospital and having time limits and OBs looming. Ina May claims that the c-section rate on The Farm is less than 2% out of thousands of births. 
  • I will spend 24–36 hours in the hospital after a vaginal birth or 48–72 after a c-section.
And our Centering notes from this week, also led by Maggie. We decided we both love her and would be totally excited if she ended up being our midwife. Lots of notes...
  • We started by writing down our biggest labor and delivery and parenting fears. Mine were having a c-section and having enough patience. Arthur's were the baby's health (and mama too?!) and having a daughter.
  • We also wrote down what personality trait that we really hope to instill in our baby. I wrote having a sense of humor. Arthur wrote humility and kindness.
  • I can start taking evening primrose oil at 36 weeks to ripen my cervix. It can be taken orally, vaginally right before bed (I've heard it suggested to wear a pad), or massaged into the perineum. Maggie said she hadn't heard of using it to massage, but that it's worth a shot. 
  • I can start drinking red raspberry leaf tea any time. One of the girls in class said she's been drinking it throughout her pregnancy. I immediately went out and bought some the next day and have been having one cup a day. I'll definitely increase this once the weather cools down. The tea is thought to help tone the uterus for more efficient contractions, not induce labor. 
  • Getting the flu shot while pregnant can help protect the baby by passing the antibodies through the placenta. The vaccine isn't available yet, but might be by next class and we will be offered a dose when it is. The antibodies will also be passed through my breast milk. I've never had a flu shot before, but am thinking I will this year.
  • There is a "don't ask, don't tell" policy for bringing a boozy drink into the hospital to celebrate postpartum. We're going to pick out a pumpkin beer!
  • I asked if we can let the baby's cord stop pulsing and donate the cord blood. Maggie said we can do delayed cord clamping (about 3 minutes) and most likely still have enough blood to donate. Letting the cord stop pulsing is most important to me, so we will note that in our birth plan and include that we'd like to donate if possible.
  • The midwives can't accept gifts, but baked goods are highly welcomed ;). I'm going to bake and freeze some energy chunks or cookies to bring with us to the hospital when we go into labor for our midwife and nurse(s). 
  • We went over the newborn procedures and what each one is for. 
  • Hepatitis B vaccine (a series of shots) can be delayed. Talk to pediatrician. 
  • There will be a hearing exam.
  • Vitamin K shot just needs to be administered to the baby within 24 hours. It aids in blood clotting.
  • Eye ointment is to prevent infection and blurs the baby's vision for 10–15 minutes. 
  • All of these procedures and getting her weight will automatically be delayed a few hours after delivery so we can bond. I am still going to make a note that this is very important to us in the birth plan, just in case. 
  • I wasn't sure if I wanted her bathed or not to let the vernix soak in, but Maggie said that usually the initial rub down after she is born rubs in/takes off most of the remaining vernix, and anything that is left I will have time to rub in during skin-to-skin time immediately post birth. We can bathe her whenever we're ready to after that. She said it will probably be really helpful for us to watch how the nurses give the bath. 
  • Baby will likely lose weight in the first couple days, but more than 10% is not ideal. If this is the case, our pediatrician might want to intervene. 
I have a goal of getting the hospital bag nearly packed before next weekend. Arthur is going out of town to visit his dad and I am trying to get as prepared as I can, just in case. Can you believe I'm now at the point where he needs to be "on call"?! Nuts!

Need to catch up?

Pregnancy Posts:

Weekly Updates:

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave us a comment. We would love to hear from you!