Sunday, 18 October 2009

sloth

I've been feeling really unhealthy lately. I've been eating kind of badly. Not so much during the day at work, but when I get home. I have no time to grocery shop, therefore we have no food, therefore we order in. No matter how often you order in, it feels like a treat for some reason. Maybe that's left over from childhood, when 98% of my meals were at the kitchen table with my family. I need to feel better. I am thinking about doing a 3 day juice cleanse to get started, but I need to check to make sure it's ok with breastfeeding. I'm sure it is...oh, and it's really crazily expensive. But as a friend who is also considering the same cleanse said, "maybe the high cost incentivises" you to do it! Still, I have better things to spend my money on, like groceries! Haha.

I am going to take some steps to feel better. I'm going to grocery shop more. When I shop, I'm also going to buy ingredients to make at least 2 meals at home. That doesn't count easy things like spaghetti. These would be a few more detailed meals with say 5 ingredients or so. Maybe something I can put in the freezer. Oh, and salads. Johnny and I used to eat salads all the time and we stopped. Honestly I think we stopped because I don't like washing lettuce. I also don't like the chemical taste from cut up salad in a bag. I think I will buy romaine leaves and then just wash and cut enough for 2 days worth of salads. Another thing I will do is walk a little further for my lunch. I go about a block, 2 at the most. I'm going to go further. It's good exercise mainly, but it's good to clear your head and get fresh air. Angus is SO mobile and before I know it he's going to be running into traffic, so I need to get in shape and feel good so I cam keep up with him!

Sunday, 20 September 2009

food

Angus is eating 3 non-breast milk meals a day. Jarred food - I use Earth's Best. I feel mildly guilty about the fact that I fully intended to cook some of his food - but have yet to do so. I bought the damn baby cubes and everything. I think I will make it a goal this week to at least cook SOMETHING for him. The jarred stuff is just so eeeeeeeeeeeasy, and the Earth's Best has no added junk. I do have some slight mistrust of them though. They falsified some info with their formula a while back, and I wonder about their jarred food. I do like the flavors though, and so does Angus - as long as those flavors aren't green. Ha! I am a little stressed out about 10 days from now when he's going to start getting finger food. Actually I'm more stressed out about after that, and for the next 18 or so years when I am the one responsible for feeding him balanced meals. I can barely feed myself a balanced meal. It's going to kind of suck to think about food groups and iron and protein and all that stuff. That seems like a full-time job to me! I think I'm going to have to spend some quality time reading up and learning more about this so I can not worry about it and have some meals in place. I guess that's still a ways away> in the meantime, I look forward to giving him tiny tiny pieces of food! Kiwi, Watermelon, cantalopue, cheese, fun times!

Sunday, 13 September 2009

catching up

I feel like I'm always so behind on blogging and that every time I blog I apologize for not doing it often enough. I hope that's a given. Anyway.....Angus is almost 8 months old and he's changed SO much! 1) He's crawling! 2) He has 5 teeth and a 6th arriving any day! He is SO much fun. It's just amazing to let him crawl and decide where he wants to go and what he wants to do. He has his own little mind and personality. It keeps us on our toes - it's a while new ballgame! Gone are the days of us putting him somewhere and having him stay there! He is constantly on the go. We're going to have to get in shape and do a lot of working out in order to keep up with him.

Otherwise - we're doing well - I'm still managing to exclusively breastfeed (he's eating baby food of course). I pump 3X a day at work and my supply has been pretty consistent and I haven't had to unfreeze any bags in a while.

Angus had his first night without me or Johnny last night. Johnny went to Toronto for the film festival and I had to be at a wedding in Vermont, so I dropped him off with the in-laws on Saturday morning. It was very lonely without the both of them and while I enjoyed the thought of sleeping in, and uninterrupted sleep, I was uncomfortable for some reason and I woke bright and early anyway. It was a quiet trip. Driving alone up and down to VT was nice and peaceful. Pre-baby, I spent a fair amount of time alone - walking in the city, or just vegging out. It was nice to have a little taste of that, but the niceness didn't make he miss the boys any less. Angus survived his stay and was happy to see me and seems unscathed! We did have to use a bunch of my frozen milk stash, and that is what's it's for. I still have a few bags left in the freezer, and I pumped a ton this weekend - probably about 6 bottles worth. I actually ran out of medela bottles to put the milk in, so I emptied out an unopened water bottle. It was so funny to see that bottle half full of milk - my milk that I made! I travelled with a big cooler and cooling supplies so that I could pump on the way. I pumped milk on the highway! I was really dreading leaving him with the in-laws, but I am glad it went well and I knew they would take great care of him, but of course I'm going to worry. I'm glad it's over!

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

SLEEP Part Two

So...sleep training week. We started on a Tuesday - kinda...it was "lite" sleep training. My goal was to fix the problem of Angus being put to bed whilst deeply asleep. He never learnt to go to sleep! So...I merely fed him until he was almost asleep, and then brought him his crib, making sure he was aware and that his eyes were open. He fussed the first couple of nights a little, but that was the start of the training. He still woke up, but not as often, but I did pick him up and bring him back to our bed when he woke up around 2am or so. On Thursday we had a doctor's appt for him, and his pediatrician's office is known for being big advocates of sleep training. Normally I don't think this is a doctor's place, but given that we were trying to figure it out, I gladly listened to their advice.

The advice, was pretty much what we already had read/researched ourselves - 1) no swaddle, just pj's 2) put him down awake but drowsy 3) if he cries, allow him to cry for 5 minutes, then go in for 1-2 minutes max and talk to him, and soothe him, but do NOT pick him up 4) if he's still crying, wait 10 minutes beore returning 5) if he STILL cries, wait another 15 before going in 6) cap it off at 15 minutes, so keep letting him cry in blocks of 15 minutes max.

The first official night of this, probably at the 25 minute mark, he went to sleep. He then woke up at 3am and 5am and we repeated the above process. Around 6 I allowed him to be up. The next night was easier all around. It hardly took him any time to fall asleep, and he only woke up at 5 and then went back to sleep. It's been pretty smooth since then! He went to be tonight quite awake, and he just hung out and fiddled around in his crib for 5-10 minutes and then lay on his side and went to sleep. Last night same thing...no tears at all, and he slept until about 5, when he woke up probably 3X for about 2 minutes each time and put himself back to sleep. I picked him up at 6:30. Magic I tell you! I was SO surprised that this was so easy, and that it wasn't complete torture. He thankfully didn't cry for very long at any point, so it could have been a lot worse. It's also working for naps too! I have noticed that he's a happier baby - less cranky and fussy - not that he was much of either of those things at all, but I am VERY thankful that we did this when we did. I was turning into a zombie! YAY ANGUS!!!

Saturday, 15 August 2009

SLEEP Part One

So...I've written here previously that Angus stopped his marathon sleeping sessions a couple of months back. He went from sleeping 10 hours straight, to waking up once, to waking up numerous times. Initially I would just feed him and put him back in his crib. Then I would just bring him to bed with me and let him nurse all he wanted. I would sleep on my side, he would sleep facing me with constant access to the boob. I guess it would be like sleeping on a buffet table! Needless to say, we weren't progressing well. I loved him sleeping next to me all snuggled up and cosy. My husband however, retreated to the couch at the height of this.

We also suffered from a few other problems. #1 - I did what I dubbed "boob to sleep" ie: I would breastfeed him to complete deep sleep and then transfer him to his crib. He would get 30 minutes on one boob, then a burp and a swaddle and singing of twinkle twinkle, then switch to the other boob until he pulled himself off and was in a deep slumber. This was a big problem since he never learned to put himself to sleep. The other issue I believe, is that we were still swaddling him - so it was hard for him to self-soothe using his hands should he so desire. And of course at this point, he should know how to do all those things, plus he no longer requires a nighttime feeding.

So - for some reason this week became sleep-training week!

To be continued....

Monday, 10 August 2009

Breastfeeding on Sesame Street

How amazing is this! We've reverted in acceptance of public breastfeeding for some reason. I don't think this would EVER get on Sesame Street today! Weird, right? Anyway - I should have posted this last week, as it was World Breastfeeding Week, so a little late - but in honor of that, here's an amazing video from Sesame Street in 1977.

Saturday, 1 August 2009

executive decision

For the past few months, I have been setting an alarm and getting up to pump in he middle of the night. This was not a problem when Angus was sleeping 10 hours straight, as I would go to bed at 10, wake up around 1 or 2 to pump and go back to bed and still get 3 hours of sleep. Unfortunately for about a month + he has been waking up anywhere between 1 and 4. Most days it seems that I get up to pump, and he either wakes up while I'm still pumping, or a short time after I go back to bed. I'm exhausted. It's really catching up with me. I have made an executive decision to not set an alarm to do this while he's not sleeping through the night. I will probably start again once he starts sleeping better, but right now it's not worth the sleep loss. So... I'm going to stop torturing myself!

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

WOW. I haven't posted in ages. Does adding my twitter stuff count? Well, it's been a bit nutty. We had a little New Jersey shore beach vacation, and my mom has been in town. Hopefully things will start to improve! Oh yeah, and Angus is still waking up every night (knock on wood as I say this - it's 3am, I am pumping and he is still asleep!). I've been very tired and it's been hard to focus on life, let alone blogging!

Anyway - let me try to catch you up.

Angus: I don't know if it's a growth spurt (he'll be 6 months very soon), or if it's his teeth (has bottom 2, maybe more are coming?) , or if he's just hungry (he is very distracted during his feedings). Whatever it is, I hope it stops! Last night I put him down and he woke up within that hour and then again within the next hour, then at 2am and then I gave up and brought him to bed with me and just let him nurse. I don't mind the "co-sleeping" but sometimes I get scared and worry that he's going to get smothered or something. I try to remain mostly awake and aware of where he is and position any sheets or blankets away from him, but there's always that part of me that worries - but I guess that's good. I am being careful!

Beach: The New Jersey shore is no place for a baby. Actually it was fine...maybe it's no place for a husband! Actually Angus is just way to little for the beach. He needs to be held all the time since we didn't really have anywhere for him to sit and it was windy, so any flat surfaces were very sandy, and I just didn't want to deal with that. (SIDE NOTE - HE'S WAKING UP! I HEAR CRYING!!! OH CRAP). I have to end this here!

Sunday, 12 July 2009

so many changes, mostly good.

Angus has realy changed so much in the last few weeks. To start, his tooth has a brother! He now has his bottom two teeth! He also really loves being on his tummy and trying to crawl - scooting I think they call it. He can mostly hold his own bottle. He has a crazy squack that he has figured out how to do. He has new things that make him giggle. He's almost 6 months old!

The one change I don't like, is that for a week now he's been waking up at 2 or 3am. Nothing manages to console him other than my boob. I don't know if he's teething again and waking because he's uncomfortable. I don't know if he's just having a growth spurt. I don't know if he's hungry and ready for solid food. I just don't know! What I do know, is that I'm tired. We got so spoiled with many months of him sleeping 8-10 hours straight. I even felt bad when people said "oh you must be so exhausted" because I wasn't! About a month ago I decided that I really needed to get up in the middle of the night to pump. It was crucial to my supply. I've been trying to do this for the past week, but his waking up has really screwed that up. So now, it's 3:15...he got up around 1:45, and I just got him back down, and now I'm pumping the breast he didn't eat from. Thank god it's the weekend, but still - I really hopw this is just a phase that will end soon!

Sunday, 5 July 2009

city baby

I think one of the best things about NYC is the subway. It takes you just about anywhere you want to go. I won't get into the fare hikes and the potentially corrupt system of management, but the subway here is a necessity. HOWEVER - there is not much worse than riding the subway with a screaming baby.

Turns out, the subway is LOUD. I mean, I knew that, but imagine what it must be like to the little sensitive new ears of a baby! Angus slept his first few times on the subway, but as of late he has chosen to scream instead. I had purchased some baby ear protectors, since I work in the music business and I figured it wouldn't be long before I took him to his first show. These seem to be the protector brand of celebrity babies, so I figured if they were good enough for Gwyneth Paltrow's babies they are good enough for mine (not that Coldplay is "loud" haha). Instead of being used at a concert, they had their initial run on the subway - and they were magic! Angus didn't cry and seemed somewhat oblivious to what was going on. We were very relieved since daily life in NYC revolves around the subway - although he probably won't be going on it more than once a week, it's a relief that we have found a way to do it that doesn't upset him. Now if someone can just sell us a bubble to put around him to stop strangers from touching him!

Saturday, 27 June 2009

5 months!

Wow - I am really slacking at posting. I promise I will get better. I am starting to be in more of a routine, as is Angus, and I will be able to add a consistent time in for blogging.

Angus is 5 months old today! I can't believe how fast it's all going. In 1 month he'll be half a year, and that sounds crazy to me. I met a 7 month old the other day and he was just sitting on the floor, reaching into a toy box and playing with toys...amusing himself and leaning forward on his arms and rocking back and forth on his knees thinking about crawling. Angus has a ways to go before that happens, but he really only seems interested in rolling from his back to his tummy and lifting his head up and stretching his arms out.

It's so crazy to me how babies work. We get emails every month from babycenter.com about his development, and they're spot on. It will be fun when he can sit up without falling over. It will be insane when he crawls. It will be funny when he eats real food. We can't WAIT for all these so-called milestones, but there's also some part of us that will miss his baby-ness very much. Right now, we're the boss of him, but soon enough he's going to be telling us what he wants to do and where he wants to go and when. It will be so much fun, and so tiring. I'm sure that's when we'll say "remember when he was a baby and we could put him in his stroller and take him wherever we wanted to go? And make him do whatever we wanted to do?"

Sunday, 21 June 2009

father's day tooth!

Johnny was away for a few days and came home on father's day eve. The day before, I found a very exciting surprise in Angus' mouth....a TOOTH! His bottom left tooth is in. SO awesome! All the drooling and hand eating finally rewards us with a cute little chomper! I did my very best secret holding in and manager to not tell Johnny, and instead, I wrote out Angus' father's day card with a note to say he could find his present in his mouth. He didn't get it at first, and I pretty much had to tell him. It was quite a surprise! It came in without much fanfare - I didn't notice too much crankiness, but then again he was with sitters all week, but none of them reported any extra fussiness. I hope the rest of them come in that smoothly!

Sunday, 14 June 2009

There are some things I have that I really couldn't live without that I thought I would share...ok - I could live without them, but they sure are making my life easier right now!

1) Pumpin' pal super shields
These things are so great because they allow you to lean back and relax while pumping and not worry about the milk going into the bottle. Very smart idea

2) La Leche League pull-over sleep bra
I've already worn one of these out, and I just bought 2 more. They are cheap, comfy and easy to nurse with and comfy to sleep in with just enough support.

3) pumping bra
Being hands-free allows to me to do things like write this blog (which I am doingnow while pumping), eat, read magazines etc). This particular version works well for me, although it looks insane.

4) More Milk Special Blend
This tincture has really helped me with my milk production. It tastes horrible, but it works. They have different blends for different women's needs and I am a believer.

5) My Brest friend
I originally thought this thing was dumb, but then a lactation consultant showed me how to use it, and I rarely nurse without it. It keeps Angus supported and it keeps me sane. My husband calls it my lunch tray.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

time flies!

Time is flying by SO fast. The days fly by, and the weekends do the same. I am finding it hard to find time to blog, let alone do things like pay my bills or put stuff away! I get up with Angus at 5:30 or 6:30, and he eats and we snuggle until 8am, and then he's in the care of a babysitter or my husband while I get ready for work and then leave at 8:45. It's hard to leave him, especially since I don't get home until close to 7, and that's with leaving work 30 minutes early! I don't want to think about it too much or it will make me cry. When I get home, he gets his pj's on and I start feeding him. Halfway through his feeding he gets burped and swaddled, and then eat some more and is put to be usually around 8pm. I get about 2 hours in the morning and about 1.5 hours at night. 3.5 hours a day, 17.5 hours a week. That is awful when you think about it. Why should a babysitter get to spend more time than me with my son? Now I'm thinking about it too much. Oops. I really hope that some day I can be a stay-at-home mom, but in the meantime I need my job, and I need my health insurance, so I don't have the option of staying home. If the economy was better maybe I would have quit and then found another job down the line, but it's just not possible these days. It's hard every day, but I am getting used to it. I don't know if it will ever get "better", but as he gets older I think he'll be a little less needy and easier for sitters to deal with. Right now he needs 100% full-time attention, and I worry that a babysitter will get bored and frustrated and he will just cry and be upset and whoops...there goes my brain thinking the worst. He's 4.5 months old now and just so damn cute. I want the people that look after him to be the best that they can be and I really hope that's what they are being!

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

efficiency

I've been doing a TON of research on pumping and Angus's eating. Thing is, the kid normally takes about an hour to eat. I think that's too long - I mean some babies take that long, and I don't really mind, but I think if he becomes a more efficient eater, I will become a more efficient pumper. What I am now doing, is going back to the method of switching sides. I stopped doing that a while ago when I thought he was having a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance (which he wasn't) and kept doing that. Now I am switching and it's helped a bit. It's only been a couple of days, but I think he's down to 40/45 minutes. I think it's helping me make more milk too. It makes sense, right? I had a day or 2 of soreness, so something is working! I've also learned that I need to do breast impressions, which had indeed helped. I've also been taking fenugreek, but I've now switched to something called more milk plus. Yuck. It tastes like medicine. Either way, I have noticed an improvement aready. I'm still now where I'd like to be in terms of output, but 2 letdowns is actually a good thing! I'm also setting an alarm and getting up to pump, which is what I am doing now at 3am - yikes! Sadly this is really affecting my mornings. I am feeling SO much more tired. I hope my body gets used to it. I'm fine when I get to work, but when Angus wakes up at 5:30 or 6:30 I feel like quite a zombie! Here's to adjusting!

Thursday, 28 May 2009

back at work :(

I am back at work now - day three. It seems like 4 months just flew by. My emotional state is ok during the day, but when I get home I get super sad. It really sucks that if I'm lucky I get 3 hours a day with him, and much of that time is spend by him nursing. I am trying to arrange leaving work 30 minutes early so I can leave at 6, which will help us stick to getting him to bed at 8pm.

I am pumping during the day and that REALLY stinks. I'm just not getting much out of the pump. Day 2 was better than day 1, ie: more milk, but it's still not enough....plus I need to pump 4 times a day, 5 would be awesome - and for a 20 minute session each time + set up, it's nearly 2 hours out of my day. I feel guilty about that - which I need to get over. It's just a lot of time when I am trying to catch up on work and get up to speed. I really hope I get more mik soon. I bought fenugreek drops and mother's milk tea, so hopefully I will see a result from that. Thing is, I only have 2 letdowns during a 20 minute session...and my son normally breastfeeds for an hour! I feel like I might need to call a lactation consultant to try to gt him to eat more efficiently before I will pump more efficiently, but who knows. Either way, I'm trying not to stress about it since that would cause me to make even less milk! Any tips?

Monday, 18 May 2009

clothes

Angus has an unbelievable amount of clothing. His paternal grandmother is a shopping addict, and every time we see her, he gets 4 or 5 new outfits! Most are cute but some are not so cute. We usually manage to tell her when something isn't to our liking and she returns it - but I feel a little guilty so I let my husband do it. I will have to get over that. I think she has a closet full of clothes for him that she spreads out each time we go. He's a lucky little guy. If only Babywit had a store in Long Island!

Speaking of clothing, I need more. My body is a mess from being pregnant and I didn't buy any new clothes last year really, other than some maternity ones so I am severely lacking. I ordered some nice stuff from Old Navy, Gap and Banana Republic, but my favorite items come from Boden. Their stuff is lovely! Hopefully I will manage to look half decent when I go back to work next week. Hopefully I will be able to get away during the day to run to get some pants, as I am severly lacking in those. I don't know how I'm going to fix my body though. My balance is off and I have weight to lose...especially around my gut. That was the case even before I got pregnant, and much more so now. I'm actually not that far off from my pre-pregnancy weight, and hopefully when I get back to work and closer to things like salads, it will help. I think I would have a much better summer if I was happy about how my body looked. Bikini here I come - NOT!!!

Sunday, 17 May 2009

back to work soon

I go back to work soon...after Memorial Day. I'm pretty bummed about it, but there is no avoiding it. I already scored an extra month off, so I feel lucky that I've had 4 months. Although in Canada, they get a year. In fact in many other countries they get a ton more time. Our system is son antiquated. Oh well. I have been pumping to try to get a stockpile of milk in the freezer, and every couple of days I can freeze some. Only every couple of days because I keep using it! Whenever I go out with him for an extended period of time, I bring along milk "just to be safe", and he usually wants it. I feel like I might need to check in with a lactaction consultant soon. He still takes about an hour to eat, and it seems like he wants to eat every 2 hours or so....sometimes 3, and I'm talking about the beginning of one feeding to the beginning of the next, so sometimes that's only an hour in between. Hmmm. I hope I'm not having a milk issue. I don't think I am since when I pump early am, I can often get 3-4 oz from the one breast that he didn't feed on. I wish it was more though. I'm a little nervous about what will happen when I am back at work and I hope I can get enough with pumping. I'd like to ideally pump what he needs the next day if not more. I am going to do my best to enjoy the next 9 days since I can't imagine how sad I'm going to be when it's over. I know I have his whole lifetime ahead of me, but he's just so tiny!

Sunday, 10 May 2009

3 months old!

Angus is now 3 months old...well, 3.5 months actually, and damn....this kid grows like a weed! I swear his head got bigger overnight, and it literally did. There's a spot behind his ears where I can see that skin has stretched and old skin has peeled to make room for growing skin underneath. So crazy. In the last couple of weeks he has discovered his new favorite toy (his feet) and he is figuring out his laugh a little more. He's been laughing for a few weeks, but it's getting easier to make him do it, and he has less occurrences of the hiccups, which would always happen after a good chuckle. He seems to be eating less - well, more time in-between feedings, and he's only pooping once or twice a day now. He also slept for 10 hours straight last night! I am a lucky gal. It's Mother's Day today and my wish was that my husband take care of his usual 2nd wakeup - the one around 6am, but this morning he slept right through his first wakeup usually around 4am and went straight through to 6:30 or so! Johnny took care of that one, and I got up to pump anyway, and went back to bed for a couple of luxurious hours.

I go back to work in a couple of weeks and I am working hard on being ok with it. I think it will be hard for the first few weeks and get easier after a while, but then I bet it will be harder again. If he was 2 it would be ok, because then he would be in daycare and I would feel better about his days without me. In the meantime I have a few lovely ladies that will look after him when Johnny is at work and ideally it will all be hunky-dory. For now though, I will enjoy these last couple of weeks of quality time with my adorable little man.

Friday, 8 May 2009

water + poop

I can't seem to get enough water. I am consistently constipated (TMI, sorry) no matter how much water I drink. I realized the other day, that I have hardly been eating any fruit either. Right after Angus was born I was eating a lot of berries, but in the last month I maybe ate a few bananas and that's it. Whoops. Hopefully if I add a ton of fruit back into my diet, and continue drinking as much water as possible this problem will soon be alleviated. Angus is taking all my water from me and I guess I'm not replacing it or getting enough fiber.

Speaking of poop, his was green 4/5 times for about 10 days. It ranged in tones, sometimes dark green, and sometimes bright green like pesto. A few times it even had some streaks of blood in it...VERY scary. Very odd. Doctors said not to worry about either thing (well, to call them if the blood was consistent), but I did my own research and found that the blood may be caused by a lactose intolerance. So, I cut out dairy...bummer...actually it hasn't been too bad at all. I really like almond milk, and surely not eating cheese will help me lose weight! The good news is that his poop is now normal! Coincidence? I think not. I will be sure to mention this at our next appointment!

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

my weight

I have been overweight for years. Not obese, but kinda "chunky" I guess you'd say. A few years ago I lost 30 pounds on weight watchers, and then gained about 15 back, which is where I was pre-pregnancy. During my pregnancy I gained about 35 pounds. Right after I gave birth I lost 25 of that very quickly, and now I need to lose just under 10 to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, and then I'd like to lose some more. I was hoping that breast-feeding would take it all way like magic, but that doesn't work if you choose to eat whatever you want, instead of eating normally and healthfully. This last week I made some changes in my diet and am making a conscious effort to make smart choices, and hopefully when I go back to work, I will at least be at my pre-pregnancy weight. Wish me luck!

the cat......

I love my cat, I really do. Slash is the best, most snuggly and lovable thing ever. About a month before Angus was born, we lost Slash's brother to a whole bunch of illnesses we didn't even know he had. After that Slash seemed ok, save for a few days of looking around. Now he's taken to meowing very loudly at inopportune moments, like as soon as I put Angus down for example. At first we realized he was meowing and wide awake around 5/6 am, as that was when the sun came up and he and his brother would play. No when he does it, sadly there is no one to play with. He then comes in our room and stands near the crib and howls. It's very annoying and wakes me up, and wakes my husband up but only woke Angus up once from a daytime nap he may have been waking up from anyway. We're not sure what to do about this and our normal "stop it" noises don't work. We're trying to give him extra love and attention, but that doesn't work. He does sleep all day. which leads to much of his night restlessness I'm sure, so am I to try to wake him up from naps during the day? He's a cat! He'll go right back to sleep! We can't not let him in the room either, because then he would howl and scratch at the door, which would be even louder. Anyway - We love him, but MAN....he's walking a thin line! Poor guy.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

work...maternity leave

I am SO lucky and happy. On the first day of our trip I received great news. My request for an extra month of maternity leave was approved! Now, instead of going back to work on 4/23, I go back on 5/26, right after Memorial day weekend. I don't get paid of course, but I am so happy tp be able to spend this extra time with Angus. I merely asked my boss for the extra time, and she thought about it, consulted with a couple of my coworkers and said yes! Everyone says that babies change so much right around 3 months, and now I get to enjoy that...plus, I will have more time to get my frozen breast milk supply up, which I need to do for my eventual return to work. Now that the weather is sporadically better, we're going to go out as much as we can and take advantage of it. Oh what a lovely month it will be!

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

i'm back!

I'm back from vacation and have many things to say - so look forward to some more frequent posting!

We just got back from our first big trip with baby. We flew to my parent's farm in Saskatchewan. If involved a flight from NYC to Toronto, then Toronto to Regina and then a 1 hour drive. I am pleased to say that Angus was a champ! We even had delays in NYC on the way out there and I was nervous that he was going to go ballistic out of boredom of something, but everything was fine! My husband had him in our sling much of the time and he seemed really happy and comfortable there, and slept a bunch! I bought a Bebe Au Lait for the flight/airport, and I'm glad I did as it made nursing in public much easier. I frankly don't care anymore who sees my boobs, but it took me a while to realize that it's not about me - it's about other people's comfort. I don't really want to be stared at or given weird looks either though. Anyway - that was nice to use, as we waited until everyone got off the flights before we did, and I was sitting and everyone else was standing and it would have been weird. I brought some pumped milk to use for takeoff and landing too (ears popping) and that was useful too. He didn't get cranky until the very end of the last flight. Otherwise, he was a total champ!

My folks live on a lovely agricultural farm, and it's some of the most gorgeous scenery and freshest air around. I am happy that we were able to go there and let them all spend some time with us and their grandson! He also got to meet my brother - his Uncle for the first time! I enjoyed watching my family interact with him, and it was funny too. My mom and dad probably haven't touched a baby since my brother was one, and that was 26 years ago - so they are a little rusty, but loving and sweet. All in all it was a great time and a nice break for my husband and I!

Sunday, 5 April 2009

2 months +

Angus is now 2 months + 1 week + 2 days old! I just love him so much and never want to stop looking at him. Yesterday we went to visit our friends and their new baby, and we argued about who would get to carry him up to their place - we both want him! It's nice to love something this much. It's funny - all those things people say that you think are so dumb are true...such as "you'll be surprised at how much you can love something" and "enjoy it, because they grow up so fast" and "say goodbye to sleep"/sleep now while you can", "they change everyday", you're going to think your baby is the cutest"...and so on and so on....they are all right and they are all true! Every day we marvel at how adorable our son is and how he changes just about everyday.

We have a trip involving and airplane coming up, and I'm a little nervous about it. I don't think he's going to scream the whole time, as we're good at comforting him - mostly with the boob - or a swaddle, but I wonder if he's going to sleep. Our travel day is long and if he doesn't sleep - he's going to be SO cranky and that would suck. We're trying to figure out what to bring on the plane, and what to pack. I actually bought a bebe au lait - which I never thought I would - I'm not very modest these days, but it seems like a good idea for airports and planes - for nursing and maybe even for sleeping...maybe a germ shield too! Anyway - wish us luck :)

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

present day...

A lot has happened in 6, nearly 7 weeks. Not really in the grand scheme of things I suppose - but Angus is much more like a baby and much less like a newborn. He weighs about 10 pounds now, his eyebrows and eyelashes have grown, he smiles, he enjoys his play mat, he follows things he wants to look at, he has more hang time, he loves taking baths, he has a bedtime...etc, etc.

It's been truly amazing watching all this stuff happen, and the little changes in his personality and day to day life and habits. He really is how own little person, quirks and all.

He will be 2 months old in a couple of days and time has really flown. I am fully recovered from my c-section and I feel good. We're going to Canada soon to see my folks, so that will be interesting...baby's first airplane ride! Soon after we return from that, I will have to go back to work, which is MOST unfortunate. I am dreading it and wondering how I will make it work with the breastfeeding/pumping etc. I don't want to stress out about it too much yet but I can't help it. I really dread the thought of someone else looking after him...he needs SO much attention right now, he hardly naps and I can't imagine anyone but a mother doing this all day for him. I'm working on finding some appropriate caretakers for him, but I am procrastinating a bit because the last thing on earth I want to do is leave him. Tears come to my eyes when I think about it :(

Friday, 20 March 2009

the first couple of weeks

I need to try to catch up to present day, but I feel like I have some holes to fill here! So.....I will talk about the first couple of weeks. They were pretty hard, and starting to become blurry. This must be one of the benefits of having a child...making you forget the difficult parts so you want to have more!

I was so bloated and my feet were giant when I got home. I also had stretch marks! None of those things happened while I was pregnant. The bloating and swelling was from the fluids they pumped into me, and I went down fast. After just a few days I had lost much of the water and thankfully the water weight! The c-section didn't make life very easy. I had a hard time getting up and my husband had to get everything for me. It was slow going for me. Thankfully my parents came to visit and they were a great help. Every day I felt a little bit better and became a little more mobile though. I tried to get outside for walks, but the weather didn't cooperate much and we had most of our coldest days right when I got home and needed to be outside!

I definitely didn't realize how time consuming a lot of things would be. Someone told me "newborns sleep a lot" and they failed to also use the phrase "some newborns"...MY newborn never sleeps! Well, he sleeps now, but initially he didn't sleep at all. Not even in the hospital after he was born. He was too worried about getting food to be concerned with sleep. Once we got home, he barely slept...I mean a few hours here and there, and gradually it got better, but anytime we got him to be asleep after a feeding, he would wake up as soon as we transferred him to his bassinet. I *think* he slept better at night, and for the first 2 weeks we were home so did I. Since we were supplementing with formula, my husband could get up and do one of the feedings and I could stay asleep - luxury!

Although that was nice, I had a LOT of anxiety about formula. I am a big breastfeeding advocate, and it broke my heart to have to give him formula..at least we used the organic stuff. The supplementing started in the hospital because he got a fever due to dehydration, so we had to keep doing it for a while, and then wean him off. That stuff is like baby crack. After he had the formula he would sleep SO deeply. I guess because it's higher in fat than breastmilk, so it takes less time to go through him, whereas especially in the early days of milk, I was producing skim and it went through him FAST. Anyway - I was very worried about how we would wean him off, and we started to just give him less and less, but then one day we just gave him none. It had been long enough that my milk was satisfying him more and he didn't seem to miss it or really notice.

Angus liked to eat ALL the time...I literally mean 18-20 out of the 24 hours in a day this kid would be on the boob as I like to say. It was VERY draining and I think I assumed he would eat, we would put him down and then he would sleep for a few hours. No dice. He would eat, sleep for a short time, wake up, eat, poop, etc. And in the middle of this he would be swaddled and unswaddled numerous times. Inevitably, once he was perfectly swaddled, he would take a giant poop and we would have to do that again. It was tricky...but it got and continues to get much better.

I got a good breastfeeding book, and it said that after about 40 days, things improve and you and your child figure each other out. That timeline was spot on. I've got many of his habits figured out and those first few weeks were nutty and sleep deprived and stressful....on top of my hormones working themselves out - many tears were shed - tears of joy and tears of stress. I haven't cried in a couple of weeks now though and it's been 7 weeks!

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

feelings after the fact...

So, if you read the story of my labor and any of my previous posts about how I wanted my birth to be, you may recall that I wanted a natural childbirth. So how do I feel about the events that took place? How do I feel about what became the most unnatural birth? I don't know really. In a way I am still processing what happened. Everyone says that you can plan and hope for whatever you want, but childbirth can be like Murphy's law. Ultimately my husband is right though. In short, by signing up to have a hospital birth, you also sign yourself up for the likelihood of many interventions that "may help you progress" or "are best for the baby" and it can be hard to avoid them. Of course though, every hospital is different, every town is different and every caretaker is different.

Ultimately I am very thankful that I have a happy, healthy baby and in short that outweighs how he got here - BUT - if there is a next time, I will do it quite differently. If I am still in NYC, I would go back to St.Luke's-Roosevelt, but I would be in their birthing center under the care of a midwife. It's nice to know that if there were to be an emergency that it can be handled a mere floor away.

...or maybe I should just go to The Farm!

Monday, 16 March 2009

after the delivery....

After the delivery, I was wheeled into a recovery area where we re-met up with our doula Shana. Angus was brought in briefly, and we put him to the breast and he latched on right away - which was awesome. Unfortunately, a really bitchy intern came and told us we had to let Angus to get all his tests and everything done. We tried to get her to delay for 10-15 minutes so we could bond and he could continue to nurse, but she wasn't having it and - well - she was a TOTAL BITCH. No way to treat a new mom. Anyway, I sent Johnny with him to the nursery, and eventually I was wheeled to my room. I wasn't going to be able to get up for a couple of days...I had a catheter, IV's with pain medication and fluids, and these weird things on my calves which were like electric boots. They vibrated on and off and I guess since the medication takes a while to wear off, and during that time I can't feel anything fro the waist down, they massage me to avoid DVT.

Eventually Johnny and Angus showed up and we nursed some more and tried to sleep a bit. Things were fine, but eventually night came and Johnny had to leave, which was sad. Angus was very fussy all night (he roomed with me) and I had problems getting him to latch again. He hadn't really slept, and he was only getting colostrum and it was an all night battle. What really sucked was that he was in a bassinet next to my bed, but I couldn't physically take him out of it or out him in it because of my limited mobility, so I had to keep buzzing the nurses to do it. Also, the lady next to me had a vaginal birth and was clearly disturbed by Angus' crying and my inability to stop it - which stressed me out.

Over the next couple of days the nursing got a bit better, but he was still a little fussy and continually on the boob. My catheter and my leg machines were removed, and I was up and walking...albeit uncomfortably. Eventually Angus developed a fever, so they had to give him some formula as they assumed he was dehydrated - which he was. I felt really bad about it - but I guess it was just because my milk hadn't arrived. Looking back, I would have benefited greatly from having a lactation consultant come see me - which my husband suggested, but I didn't. The nurses all give you different opinions on breastfeeding, and there are no lactation consultants on staff. We also have conflicting blood types, which caused elevated billirubin levels (which is what causes jaundice) and that may have contributed to the fever too. The fever went down quickly after the formula was given, so after breastfeedings it was recommended that I continue to "top him off" with the formula.

So....I gave birth on a Tuesday and went home on Friday. My parents had arrived in town the night before so they were there to help, which was wonderful. We left St.Luke's Roosevelt and were left to our own devices to start our journey as parents

Saturday, 7 March 2009

regularity

I hope to return to more frequent posting on Monday, but in the meantime - here are 2 great/interesting/funny articles I came across today...

NYTimes...flying with a baby

NYTimes...nursing and drinking

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

my birth story

Ok...finally. Here is the story of my labor as told by my husband Johnny with help from our doula Shana. The ones in italics & bold are the text messages he sent to a small list of friends and family. It's a LONG story and was a LONG labor. Enjoy!

Friday - 1/23
13:30 - normal OB GYN appointment - Sonya is 2cm dilated and 40% effaced. They send us to St Luke’s for a sonogram and some fetal monitoring. We walk through Central Park from 93rd and CPW to 58th & Amsterdam....30+ blocks! The resident on duty sends us up to Labor & Delivery to get further monitoring (for no real stated reason). We stay there for 4 hours. Sonya sees some minor contractions on the monitor and feels them a bit when we get home.

Saturday - 1/24
07:00 - I get up for work, Sonya is definitely feeling some contractions. I go into the job expecting to be called away by mid afternoon. The call never comes. I get home around 3PM. We finish off the day pretty normally. Sonya gets some napping in, and we go to bed kind of early.

Sunday - 1/25
00:00 - Sonya wakes up to full-on contractions. They start about 7 min apart, and fluctuate between 5 and 8.
00:45 - Sonya goes to the bathroom and has a bit of bloody show and notices mucus discharge is increasing.
01:00 - Contractions start to weaken a bit.
02:00 - Contractions intensify.
04:00 - I make Sonya an omelet.
05:00 - Things slow down a bit, we go back to sleep.
10:00 - We wake up, contractions are about 10-15 min apart, they stay that way most of the day.
17:00 - We take a long walk around the neighborhood. When we got home, things kick back in heavy. Contractions are about 3-5 min apart. We ride them out at home, eat some donuts we had bought on the walk, and start trying some positions to help Sonya deal with the pain.
22:30 - We call our doula Shana to give her a heads up, and call our OB Dr. Langer to tell her things were happening, but we decide to stay home for a while.
22:30 - Sonya takes a bath for about an hour.

Monday - 1/26
01:00 - We ask Shana to come over. She helps Sonya with pain and soothe her. We slowly get gear up for the hospital.
03:00 - - Sonya’s water breaks.
05:30 - We head to the hospital.
06:00 - Sonya is admitted to St. Lukes/Roosevelt.
07:00 - Sonya is checked. She is 3cm dilated and fully effaced. We are sent to our room in Labor & Delivery - Room 26. When we get there, we ask for intermittent monitoring. This is not greeted kindly, but eventually we get our way, and Sonya is free, on her feet again, and contracting on the birthing ball.
09:00 - Sonya is checked and is 5cm dilated. She takes a bit of a rest and lies down “As long as we have her lying down we should get her on the monitor”, they say...we reluctantly allow it.
09:21 - At the hospital...got here around 6AM. She’s 5cm and totally effaced, with pretty much non-stop contractions. This girl is AMAZING.
11:00 - While I was calling my folks, Dr. Lurie (our on duty OB) had come in and explained that she felt like Sonya’s contractions were “not strong enough”. She wants to introduce a intra-utero compression monitor to more accurately measure the contractions. We don’t feel we’re being given much of a choice, and it happens quickly. Sonya lies down for a bit more, and her contractions remain frequent, but weak. Dr. Lurie wants to start Pitocin. I ask for a bit of time to work with her on her feet, which I do. We begin taking contractions standing and on the birthing ball, and her contractions intensify greatly, but Dr Lurie does not like being unable to monitor the fetal heart rate (our movement had rendered the external monitor unreliable). So, she shortly insists if we were going to move around, that we apply the internal heart rate monitor. We’re uncomfortable with that, and talk her out of it.
12:30 - Sonya’s mobility is severely limited with the internal compression monitor, and she is pretty much forced back into a supine position on the bed. Things stall again, and Dr. Lurie says we need to get Pitocin going. She also recommends a Foley to empty her bladder, since she can’t get up or really move around much at all. We allow the Pitocin to be introduced slowly, and it is ramped up over the next few hours.
15:30 - The baby’s heart rate is dipping with each contraction, and they insist on the internal fetal heart rate monitor. A resident inserts it and screws it in.
16:00 - The Pitocin is reintroduced. Sonya’s contractions are now spaced out more, and still fairly weak.
16:27 - Still in fucking labor. Things have not gone as we had hoped them to. One
thing is certain, though. It cannot be underestimated how overwhelmed I am by the strength, will, and selflessness of Sonya. We are all lucky to know such a
creature...seriously - holy shit.

17:15 - Sonya is checked by Dr. Lurie and has dilated to 7cm. There are also traces of light meconium in the water but not enough or dark enough to worry about. Dr. Lurie feels like a Cesarean is around the corner, but knows Sonya wants a vaginal, natural birth. Since she will have to get an epidural to have a Cesarean, she suggests getting that first and seeing if that will relax the cervix enough to open up that last bit.
18:45 - Sonya is administered an epidural.
19:15 - Sonya nods off a bit, the Pitocin is increased, and I step out to get some food.
19:19 - After 44 hours spent riding out steady contractions without a drop of medicine, fetal heart rate issues have forced SK under an epidural. If this relaxes her cervix enough to push our baby out in the next few hours, we can avoid a c-section.
22:00 - Sonya is checked again. She is still 7cm, though the baby has dropped a bit more and is engaged.
23:15 - Depending on Sonya’s position in the bed, the fetal heart rate continues to dip severely during contractions. Dr. Lurie has an amnio-infusion administered to help relieve any pressure on the cord. The Pitocin is stopped for a bit, then reintroduced once the fluid has drained into the uterus.

Tuesday - 1/27
01:00 - Sonya is checked. She is 8.5cm dilated.
03:00 - Sonya is checked. She is 9cm dilated.
05:00 - After HOURS of lying on her back with an epidural on Pitocin, Sonya is finally dilated enough to attempt a push. There is still a lip to the cervix, but Dr. Lurie feels like she can push it aside with her fingers, if Sonya can push the baby through. Sonya’s natural labor has died by this point and the contractions are being created by the Pitocin alone. This is not a sufficient force to work with her, and her attempts to push fail.
06:30 - Sonya is taken to prep and to the OR, and I scrub up.
07:00 - I joined her in the OR for the cesarian.
07:03 - Suited up, and heading into the OR for the C.
07:24 - Angus Anton North is surgically removed from his mother and introduced to the world.
08:26 - Angus Anton North came out into the world at 7:24AM. He weighs about 8
lbs, and has reddish hair.


Wednesday - 1/28
20:45 - SK is asleep and snoring for the first time since Saturday afternoon...YAY!!!

Thursday, 12 February 2009

busy busy baby mama!

I swear I will tell my birth story soon, but as you can imagine, I have no time! Long story short, I wanted a natural birth, but ended up with a c-section. I did labor for about 44 hours without any drugs, but hospital stuff led me down the road to all sorts of things, which ended up in a c-section. All in all, I am happy that we had a healthy baby and at the end of the day, I don't care how he came out. Recovering from the c-section started slow and was initially very difficult but now I am feeling much better. I should be 100% in about 4 weeks...apparently it takes 6 weeks to fully recover. More soon!

Sunday, 1 February 2009

IT'S A BOY!

I had a baby!
Angus Anton North was born on Jan 27th at 7:24 am.
Hair: color tbd, maybe reddish blonde/brown?
Eyes: Blue

Gory details coming soon!

Saturday, 24 January 2009

the most unrelaxing day ever...

Long story made somewhat short.....Here's the scoop on my "relaxing" Friday - aka the first day of my maternity leave. I wrote this out originally in an email to a few friends, and now I share if with you...

We had doctor and a 41 week sonogram at the hospital on Friday
I'm 2 cm dilated, 40% effaced.
We were at the hospital FOREVER....ok, 4 hours.
We went for the sonogram, which was fine - we have enough fluid and things look good. Before that I had a non-stress test, and the doctor wanted me on it for more time, so we did more time, then after the sonogram he came down and said he "wasn't happy" with it and sent me upstairs for more monitoring. It was the doctor at the hospital, not MY doctor, and he didn't give much of an explanation as to what he wasn't happy with.

We went upstairs, which is actually labor and delivery, and into big area with about 8 curtained off spaced full of women getting the same test. Some intern said things looked fine and tried to give me a vaginal exam, which i refused. I said "I just had one at 1:30" and she was fine with us skipping it. Phew! I've received some advise about interns and trying to avoid them giving you vaginal exams. I really don't need 2 in one day thank you very much. They let us go, saying things were good. Phew.

Earlier in the day, my normal doctor also wanted to strip my membranes, which I denied. Said we'd wait until next week for that! Our next visit to the doctor is on Monday, but hopefully I won't make it until then BECAUSE...on the monitor it looked like I was having somewhat regular contractions! I could barely feel them - like a mild cramp - but they continued last night, but now they are gone. Maybe Braxton-Hicks? Either way, things seem to be moving along.

We also walked from the doctor to the hospital, which was 30 blocks in Central Park! It was 44 degrees yesterday, so a lovely time....and I had hot thai food for dinner.
Fingers crossed for some action soon.

Friday, 23 January 2009

yay! maternity leave!

My maternity leave started today - yay! I am only missing one crucial thing - the baby! I am very thankful for my 3 months off though. It will be weird to adjust at first...not check work email, and not check in, but hopefully once the baby comes I won't care about any of that stuff! Today we go to the doctor AND the hospital. Doctor is a normal visit, hospital is for the 41 week sonogram so they can check the fluids, etc and make sure everything is still looking good.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

overdue!

Argh! I was due on Friday and now it's Wednesday and as of yesterday, I was still only 1cm dilated! 'doh! I am keeping sane and calm though. Due dates are so vague. This is not up to me! No amount of me being impatient will help. I DO want to meet this little person though, and the anticipation of labour is making me a little nutty! It's this giant fear for the unknown...not fear though, more like nervous excitement! When will I go into labour? Will I be sure that's what it is? What will it feel like? When will we call the doctor? When will we call the doula? When will I scream in pain? When will we go to the hospital? How long will it take? So many unanswered questions remain!

Anyway - I'm trying to walk as much as possible, but it's freeeeezing here in NYC, so that makes it tricky, plus there is still ice on many of the sidewalks, which makes my husband nervous. We had indian food last week, and I have some red raspberry leaf tea. If I haven't given birth on Monday I'm going to get some acupuncture. We have another doctor's visit on Friday plus a visit to the hospital for a sonogram to check the amniotic fluid level. I hope it's all ok and I hope I'll be more dilated by then! I'd even be ok with just 2cm! Tomorrow will be my last day at work for 3 months, and that will be a fine thing!

Sunday, 18 January 2009

surrealism

It feels so surreal to me that I am sitting here on a Sunday morning, living my normal life, watching tv and reading the paper like any weekend morning - but then I get up and think to myself that at any moment, I could start having contractions and then my weekends will never be the same again. It's a sort of scary thought - one that I don't think about too often. It's not that I'm "scared" to become a mother - it's just weird that suddenly one day I will be going about my normal routine, and that will then likely be the last time that I have that routine since EVERTYHING is on the verge of changing! I'm excited, scared and nervous. You never know when the moment will come that suddenly I will have to go to the hospital for 2+ days , and it won't be because I've broken something or hurt myself - it will be because I am bringing new life into the world. And then, when we get home, nothing will ever be the same again, because my life won't revolve around ME anymore - it will involve around a little tiny person that I am responsible for - that WE as a team are responsible for....a little half me/half husband person. It's funny how focused we've been on the birthing process, that when I think about what happens when we get home with this little thing, I draw blanks because I don't think we've really thought about that. I think those days are going to be joyous and ideally NOT full of pain and therefore we just can just go with the flow. We shall see!

Friday, 16 January 2009

it's my due date and i'll cry if i want to!

Just kidding! No tears over here. I'm pretty peachy actually! The only thing slightly annoying is trying to explain the wonders of pregnancy to many people who think "due date" literally means that I am having my baby today...like somehow my body is on a strict 40 week gestational calendar - which it's not! I keep throwing out the "well, only 3-5% of women give birth on their due date" statistic, which probably makes me sound like a bitchy know-it-all. Oops. But I guess I would be saying the same thing to someone in my shoes - at least prior to this experience. Now I am much more educated about the process, and know that the TV version of birth that we're all used to is WAY off! 

Anyway, we went to the doctor yesterday and I am 1cm dilated and 25% effaced, so things have progressed since last week when the only news was that my cervix was "soft", so I am pleased. Our next appt. is on Tuesday - if we make it until then! My only slight debate is if today will be my last day of work or not. I always told myself I wouldn't work past my due date, but now that it's here and I still feel good and I have no baby, I worry that it's going to be 2 weeks late, and I'll be sitting at home for those 2 weeks wasting my maternity leave when I could continue working and have that extra time at the end with my baby. But, I don't have much left to do here - my temporary replacement is here and working, so  I might be bored here too! At least Monday is a holiday, so I guess I will say my goodbyes today and then play it by ear, with the most likely scenario being that I won't be here on Tuesday.....or I could come in after the doctor's appt if she says I'm still only 1cm. Decisions decisions! 

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

"the farm" and the books

We hired our doula (yay!), and she recommended a couple of books by Ina May Gaskin, a super-legendary midwife who also has an operation in Tennessee called "The Farm". It's a commune of sorts...although that's really not the right word for it...really a community with a giant birthing center and a small town where people live and work. People go there to give birth and it sounds like an amazing place. The have some crazy impressive statistics...They say less than 2% of their births result in c-sections, and it's rare that things like forceps and vaccuums are used...see the link for more. And these I believe, are all natural births! She has 2 books, and I'm 1/3 of the way through "Ina May's Guide To Childbirth". The first part of the book is comprised of birth stories, which I LOVE and I am learning a lot from them. Mainly, that when I feel like things are starting to happen, I need to 1) sleep and 2) walk. I can't wait to read her other book, which is quite legendary - "Spiritual Midwifery". Some of the stuff in these books is a little, well, earthy and hippy dippy and a little odd, but it's nonetheless inspirational. I have been trying to go to bed earlier, but the book is so interesting that it's hard to put it down! I'm not saying I'm ready to go to TN to give birth, but it's nice to know that there are many people out there that believe in giving birth the natural way, which I hope to do!

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

will this be the week?

My estimated due date is on FRIDAY! Yippee! I have been waiting to get here for 9 months, and although I know that only 3-5% of women actually give birth on their due dates, it feels good to almost be here. I still feel ok, which I am surprised at, but at night I feel like crap. I ate so much last night that I was so uncomfortable and I woke up at 5am and vurped (burp and a bit of vomit comes up). GROSS. I really feel like a whale. It's so hard to merely move from one side to the other, an ordeal if you will. I haven't considered kicking my husband out of bed yet, but it might come to that soon! I don't plan on taking any extreme measures and drinking castor oil, or trying any of the old wives tales quite yet, but I do plan on eating some Indian food on Friday night! I also have some red raspberry leaf tea, which is supposed to help, but I think I am a little scared to drink it. I want to let the baby choose it's own due date, but I want to meet it and be a mom soon too!

Monday, 12 January 2009

losing faith in humanity

Today's commute really took the cake. As usual I got on the last car of the L train and just my luck, it wasn't packed and a woman was getting up from one of the tiny seats at the end. I was psyched. I was then totally and completely cut off by a hasidic man. I mean c'mon! I was wearing a bright red jacket and SO obviously hugely pregnant. I was upset about this, but not so much because I really wanted to sit down, but really because every time this happens to me, I lose a little faith in humanity. Today was extra unsettling, but I was just sad that people can be so rude and inconsiderate. Thankfully a man on the bench seats offered his seat up for me, and I was grateful, but I spent the rest of my ride stewing and I REALLY wanted to say something to the man, but I just couldn't do it. Taking the subway is something I won't miss when I go on maternity leave!

Friday, 9 January 2009

the glider

Our glider finally arrived today after much online shopping and pricing and deciding and poll-taking and then waiting. It's HUGE. Our plan was to put it in our living room, since we don't really have a baby room. The baby will be in our bedroom for a while, and then MAYBE move into our spare room, which is now an office. I was envisioning a calm living room environment, maybe with some TV watching while feeding on the glider, but the thing feels like the giant chair at Universal studios! My husband spent the day building a "comfortable environment" in our spare room, which I mentioned this morning after I said I would be "ok" with it in the spare room if such a thing were to exist in there, and now it does! He rules. So....we've got it in here, it's a nice corner and everyone is happy! The only problem is that the crib, which is still in the box since we won't be using it for a few months is now wrapped in plastic outside, and of course I worry that the drastic temperature changes we've been having in NYC will cause it to bend and break....especially since we're to get a snowstorm tomorrow. We shall see...maybe it will be fine out there. Anyway - the glider is the second to last piece of this puzzle. What's the last piece, you ask? THE BABY! WHICH IS DUE IN 1 WEEK! YAY!

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Doula

After taking our classes at Real Birth, it became evident to us that our goal of achieving a natural birth might be more likely if we had an additional, experienced support person by our side during labor and delivery. AKA a DOULA. I mean in addition to the Ob/Gyn or nursing staff. I like to think of it as a hired friend actually. We're in the process of talking to a couple of them, and their prices range wildly, due to experience I think. The official D.O.N.A website has been useful too. We meet one more on Wednesday night and then will hopefully make a decision either way. I think having someone there to help relax me and use their bag of tricks to manage the pain would be smart. I like the idea of a doula too. It's a good way of thinking and our doctors seem to be ok with us using one also, which is good. They don't interact too much with the doctors - they are there to interact with us and to help us make knowledgeable decisions about our choices and care. I will keep you posted!

Monday, 5 January 2009

Patience

I think we're pretty much ready to have this kid! All supplies are in the house, and our brains are in parent mode. We've taken the classes, we've watched the videos, we've bought the stuff and we feel quite ready to go! I don't know what it feels like for my body to be ready, but the baby seems pretty cosy in there and is still kicking away and moving around and hasn't - to the best of my knowledge - "dropped" yet. Mucus plug is still intact and there haven't really been any signs that this will happen soon. So.....it's just a waiting game! The due date is 11 days away still, but that date is so vague that I don't really take it to heart. Apparently only 5% of babies are actually born on their due dates. First babies are usually late, but all my friends have been early, so who knows! I'm ready for this to happen though and I am exercising great patience.