Life in a Table: Pre and Post Baby

Some things have changed, and some endure.

  Pre-Baby/Pre-Pregnancy Me Post-Baby Me
An intense workout Hiking 10 miles on the AT Rollercoaster or taking a 90 minute yoga class followed by up to 2 hours of Asana Club Yoga-play. Walking for about an hour and a half (just over 3 miles total) at a doleful  pace in the woods, wearing baby.
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Cereal? Gave it up because I used to eat so much of it. I would just eat bowl after bowl after bowl.  I stopped keeping it in the house. I prefer Life cereal (or the generic version).  For a late night snack.  Or two.
Do you want a milkshake? Mmm, sounds good, but no thanks, it’s SO many calories and so much sugar, and I’ll feel disgusting afterward. YES PLEASE!  Since I’m here, we might as well make it a large.
How about some spaghetti for dinner? Eh, not my favorite. It’s mostly carbs with no fuel.  I’ll just make myself something else. YES, that sounds warm and delicious.
What do you want for breakfast? Oatmeal with skim milk, a banana, craisins, walnuts, and cinnamon. Oatmeal with 2% milk, a banana, craisins, walnuts, and cinnamon.
Lunch at work Sandwich with lunchmeat, whole grain bread, light mayonnaise, and a huge pile of spinach, Yogurt, maybe a kind bar. You mean 2nd Lunch? Sandwich with lunchmeat, whole grain bread, light mayonnaise, and a huge pile of spinach, Yogurt, maybe a kind bar, maybe trail mix, maybe an apple. ALL OF THE FOODS.
What kind of yogurt? Chobani Greek, 0% Fat (bought in bulk from Costco), Peach or Blueberry please! Oikos WHOLE MILK Greek, specifically Toasted Coconut and Vanilla flavor.  And at least 2 a day.
How about Ice cream? I try not to allow myself to have it, except on special occasions. I can basically live without. Are you not getting this?  YES, I want ALL THE ICE CREAM.
A Great Post-Workout Snack/Reward A “Muscle Max” or “Acai Energizer” smoothie from Robeks. A frozen custard waffle Cone at Abbott’s.
A Big Purchase My hiking backpack for the Tour du Mont Blanc in 2015. A hiking backpack for short hikes with baby next year.
A Great way to spend a Saturday Ashtanga in the morning with yoga pals, then farmer’s market and brunch, followed by a long nap on the couch.
OR

A long hardcore hike followed by a visit to a local brewery and dinner with my hubs, preferably at Market Station in Leesburg.

Sleeping as late as possible.  Watching Animal Docs and Rock the Park on NBC over breakfast for me and Maia.  Perhaps a long leisurely walk in the woods.  Perhaps farmer’s market or Lake Anne fun.  Perhaps (gasp!) dinner out at a fast-casual restaurant! Or even lunch out at Lake Anne Coffee House!
Sleep Schedule? Early to bed, early to rise…makes a woman healthy, wealthy (?) and wise (??). Dictated by Maia.  Usually LATE to bed (between 11pm and 1am) then a middle of night wake up to feed (between 3am and 5am) then up for the day as late as possible (between 9 and 11am).  (At least this was the schedule until this week… now we are working on sleeping THROUGH THE NIGHT (!!).
Work There are days and moments when I am glad I get paid to do it, but overall I love my job, patients, and co-workers. Sometimes I want to stay in bed, but once I am there, I am generally happy. There are days and moments when I am glad I get paid to do it, but overall I love my job, patients, and co-workers. Sometimes I don’t want to leave my family, but once I am there, I am generally happy.
Yoga 3-4x a week at the studio, 2-3 home practices a week.  Working on handstands, floating forward, and ashtanga primary series.

So thankful for my practice and yoga community.

Generally 1-2x a week at the studio.  Random yoga-esque stretching with baby.  Very modified for my “mommy thumb” and post-c-section.  Grateful for every moment of it.  So thankful for my practice and yoga community.
When I feel adventurous, I might try… A Rocket Yoga class, a silks class, trapezing. A Baby and Me Yoga class or swim class.
Planning a Trip to… Colorado or Europe or The Grand Tetons for a hiking adventure! Southern California for a wedding… with a baby… for an even bigger adventure!
My Husband Most supportive, caring, amazing husband in the world.  Can’t imagine life without him. Most supportive, caring, amazing husband in the world.  I would definitely lose my s#!& daily without him.
Favorite things to do in free time at home Blogging, napping, watching TV or playing a game with Brian. Sleeping.
Blog format Long, winding paragraphs, sometimes SO LONG WINDED that I divide it into 2 posts… This table, for ease of thought organization on less sleep than I would like.  Still so long winded, I probably should have divided it into 2 posts. ❤

 

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Things I Love (Or at least like a lot)

While being at home with a baby on my boob most of the time, keeping myself upbeat involves finding the little things that make me happy and enjoying them as much as possible.  Here are a few:

To Watch: American Ninja Warrior

I just crawled out from under a rock (Its pretty amazing that I could do this while being at home with a baby for the last 9 weeks) and realized that OMG, I LOVE AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR!  Why on earth have I not been watching this for the past NINE Seasons??  I love it – All those bad-ass people, some wearing silly costumes, their fun custom T-shirts, the corny jokes the announcers make, the sweet/cheesy back stories, and, of course, the crazy obstacles and their super shocking strength.  Last night I saw I girl who is 5 feet tall do it!!  I love that ANW is something that motivated adults can train for and actually do as an adult without having done it for their whole lives.  I flatter myself to think that in my day, I probably wouldn’t have been too bad at it… if I trained… A LOT, of course.

To Listen to: One Bad Mother

https://i1.wp.com/is1.mzstatic.com/image/thumb/Music62/v4/8b/ca/6a/8bca6ac6-dfcd-88fd-fd38-a207f0ad2c85/source/1200x630bb.jpg            While waiting for one of my ultrasounds, I took a picture of a list of parenting podcasts in a magazine.  Of course, I checked out One Bad Mother first.  I have started listening at the beginning (2013) of their podcast when both their kids were little and I am about 10 episodes in– I LOVE it.  This is a show about celebrating your small successes as a parent, and letting go of your failures and mishaps.  They discuss alcohol, breastfeeding, birth stories, phone habits, etc, all in a non-judgey way (of course while joking about judging each other).  Listeners can call in with their parenting “genius moments” and “fails” each week.  Listening to this show is like talking to your irreverent potty-mouthed friend about parenting.  Great for late night breastfeeding sessions when I really don’t want to do anything that requires a lot of mental energy.  And Biz and Theresa are STILL making podcasts, so I guess it will last me a while…

To Eat: Oikos Whole Milk Greek Yogurt

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In the hospital, I took great pleasure in looking through the menu and choosing each food item for all my meals (when I was finally allowed to eat again). For my first meal I requested the “Coconut Greek Yogurt” listed.  My tray arrived with Oikos Toasted Coconut and Vanilla flavor greek yogurt and I was in HEAVEN.  While I realized that, yes, almost anything would taste amazing after not eating a proper meal in almost 48 hrs, why, I wondered, was this yogurt SO ridiculously delicious? I examined the package and saw that OH, It’s made with WHOLE milk.  None of this non-fat/low fat business.  I have previously been a Chobani loyalist, mostly because Brian gets the non-fat Chobani yogurts in bulk from Costco for a good value, and they are very consistently good.  However, this whole milk yogurt is on a completely new level of deliciousness with about the same number of calories, only 4.5 grams of fat, and is only a little bit more expensive.  And, hey, I’m breastfeeding, so I need fat, right?

To Poop On: Bum Genius 4.0s : Cloth Diapering System

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We received a stash of cloth diapers from Brian’s sister Ellen and our friend Page.  While there were a few other models mixed in, the majority of the diapers are the Bum Genius 4.0s.  These diapers are adjustable and with the variety of inserts we received, they fit our 10 lb baby just fine (online they claim to be adjustable to fit babies 7-35 lbs).  The first few times I changed these diapers, I marveled at how hard it was to tell that they were wet.  The liner, which is next to the baby’s skin, stays fairly dry, and the insert sucks up all the liquid.  Plus, they are fun colors and are super cute.  The only problem we’ve had (with a few of the more heavily used diapers) is that the Velcro has worn out and doesn’t attach well – but hopefully we will find someone crafty to pass these along to, and the Velcro could easily be replaced.  My feelings about these diapers might cool when we introduce solid foods and solid poops are introduced to the diapers, which we will have to rinse off and flush before washing.  For now, it’s not too bad to launder the diapers, but they do require 2 wash cycles and it does take time to put in the inserts after washing.  We’ll see how things go.  For now we are continuing to use disposable wipes because it sounds like it would be annoying to deal with a wash cloth and spray bottle at every diaper change. And, of course, we have disposable diapers on hand that we can use when we are washing the cloth.  I am not sure that I would buy these myself (they are NOT cheap) but I am glad to have them and use them since they were handed down to us.

I couldn’t find the exact kind anywhere, but these are bum genius with snaps (looks like they phased out the velco).

How about you? What simple things do YOU love???  Please share!!

 

Partner Yoga with your Newborn!

Having a hard time fitting your yoga practice into your new life as a parent?  Here are some postures you can do with your newborn to help you stretch out, strengthen, and relax.  Of course, if your post-partum physical condition does not allow you to take these postures comfortably and safely, please wait!  Be gentle and patient with yourself!

1) Mid-Meal Wake-Up Ragdoll

Does your baby fall asleep while eating?  After the first boob, she is totally conked out, but you have a situation on the other side… Place your baby on the floor and settle into a relaxing forward bend, keeping your knees loose. Rock side to side, shake your head yes and no.  Let your hair tickle your baby’s belly.  You can even do this with your “My Brest Friend” nursing pillow still attached to you!  When your baby wakes up again she’ll realize she still hungry!

Precaution:  You will want to discontinue this posture when your baby begins grasping and reaching for things… if you want to keep your hair.

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2) Samastitihi-Burps

Placing your baby up on your shoulder, stand with your feet shoulder-width/hip width apart.  Keep your knees loose and stack your joints.  Give your baby some gentle pats to get the burps out, while you press your shoulders down away from your ears and tuck your chin slightly.  Extend one arm if you can do it without dropping your baby… This is a great time to work on your posture, while you hold your baby upright to help her digest.

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3) Enrichment-Time Straddle

After eating, it’s time to play!  When your baby is in her “enrichment area” (I don’t know what these things are called… Play mat?  “Enrichment area” sounds a lot cooler), enjoy a wide seated straddle pose.  Ground your pelvis and draw your belly in.  Lean forward with a long spine (also taking care of your hair once your baby learns to reach and pull).  Take a few variations to stretch your trunk to the side, wring out your shoulders, etc.

4) Wait-for-the-Poops Crescent Lunge

You begin changing your baby’s diaper, and that’s when she starts pooping?  And it takes… a while… to get it all out.  Go ahead and cheer her on (“you can do it, baby!  I believe in you!”),  but don’t just stand there!  While employing caution so as not to allow your baby to roll off the changing table, and possibly using the changing table to brace yourself, enjoy a crescent lunge stretch.  Press into your back heel to stretch your calf muscles.  Maybe put your hands on both sides of your pelvis to ensure they are even, pointing forward toward your baby like headlights. Engage your core to tuck your pelvis under your shoulders, feeling a gentle stretch in the front of your hip while strengthening your opposite leg.  Ahhhhh!  Did you need that?  I did.

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5) Go-the-BLEEP-to-Sleep Crescent Lunge/Goddess Flow:

Moving with your breath, in a crescent lunge position with your baby on your shoulder or in your arms, exhale and bend the back knee.  Straighten it on the inhale and come back up.  You can also straighten the front leg to get a bit of a stretch in the hamstring.  Let your steady breath and steady rocking motion soothe you and your baby. For a variation, flow in and out of goddess pose, bending and straightening both knees with your breath, keeping your core engaged and squeezing your gluts.  After this routine, your baby, (and you), will be ready to rest!  Seal the deal with some lateral lunges.  Then, if all goes well, put your sleeping baby to bed, and enjoy your sivasana!

And, of course, don’t forget to enjoy the most important pose of all:  Happy Baby!!

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Breastfeeding is NOT Easy

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If my previous entry about giving birth was not divisive enough for you, you’ll like this post about the perhaps even more divisive mom-topic of breastfeeding. I have a few thoughts I want to share, because I now spend the largest chunk of my time involved in this very activity.  Of course, I AM NOT JUDGING ANYONE.  If you breastfed your babies, good for you.  If not, good for you.  Everyone has to make their own choice about this, and I strongly believe you should research your options and, above all, do what is right for you and your family.  We have decided to breastfeed, and I am going to write a little about my experience because I now spend anywhere from 6-9 hrs a day breastfeeding – it’s a pretty big part of my world right now.  I do have some thoughts on the matter and would also like to vent a little. I’m going to be talking a bit about my boobs, and it may be TMI, so if that’s not for you, get out now before it’s too late.

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Right now, breastfeeding is like a full time job with flex-time that is spread throughout the day and night, except that I don’t decide when I’m on the clock; that’s up to my 6 week old boss.  At this point, Maia spends about 10-20 minutes on each boob while we are breastfeeding.  With that and the burping, getting her to latch and changing her diaper at least once (sometimes before the feeding, between boobs, AND at the end of the feeding – because for some reason my baby does not seem to be able to focus on eating if her diaper is even a little bit wet) the feeding routine takes 45 mins to an hour.  She eats anywhere from 8 to 10 to 12 times a day depending on the day, an anywhere from 1-4.5 hrs between the start of one feeding and the start of the next (but usually 2-4 hrs between and about 8 feedings a day).

Here is a bit of advice based on my experience so far:

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Get your breast pump before you have your baby.  Call your insurance company and see if they cover it.  I was able to get a very easy to use electric breast pump shipped to me from this company and didn’t have to pay a cent.  I had thought, oh, I won’t need the pump right away because I will be on maternity leave feeding my baby.  Sure, if every feeding went PERFECTLY, I guess one might not need a breast pump right away.  But I needed the pump at the beginning to establish my milk supply before Maia started sucking well, and now I need it to pump about 1-2x a day to express milk so Brian can feed her bottles, and so we can accumulate a supply of breastmilk in our freezer (squirrelling it away for my impeding return to work like doomsday preppers).  I also use the pump if, at a feeding, Maia nurses for 20 mins or more on one boob and then only 2-3 min on the other boob, leaving me lopsided and sore.  Got to get that stuff outta there!

When you order your breast pump, also order this bra.  For the first week at home, I was simply holding the breast pump containers up to my boobs for the duration of pumping, which rendered me helpless, staring into space listening to the unpleasant whirr of the machine.  Luckily I have an amazing husband who would feed me, and push my hair out of my face (I remember telling him, “Don’t be gentle, just shove it all back behind my ear.”).  I also had breastmilk leaking out of the flanges and running down my belly, and I was wondering how I would ever do it at work without completely making a mess of myself.  Then my genius friend Emily told me about this bra, which now allows me to have both hands free while pumping.  Since I have a cordless pump, I can even change locations/walk around while pumping.  Game changer.  I honestly cannot believe that something like this does not come every breast pump, because, seriously, I don’t think anyone should have to pump without it.

Get professional help and ask for advice.  You might think breastfeeding is going to come naturally for you and your baby.  And, while I wish that for you, I didn’t have that experience.  My nipples were cracked and had scabs on them in the hospital because I was so desperate for my baby to eat.  Luckily, there were TONS of professionals available to help us.  We saw 2 lactation consultants at the hospital, and one at our pediatrician’s office.   We then took advantage of a free follow up appointment with the one we liked from the hospital, and have now had 2 follow ups with the one at our pediatrician’s office.  Nurses in the hospital are also happy to help you latch your baby or try different positions.  Get advice from multiple people, because you never know what is going to work for you.  Take the advice you like and forget the rest.  Breastfeeding is a skill that you need to learn; don’t expect it to come naturally.  Dedicate the time to learning it, just like you would if you were learning how to drive.  In my experience, after the first week at home (during which we did a laborious routine that included pumping after every feeding, and supplementing the feeding with pumped milk using a syringe and tube, breastfeeding was “well established.” Maia was consistently latching well, my nipples no longer looked like a war zone, and the lactation consultants were able to verify that she was taking in milk sufficiently by weighing her before, then after, a feeding.  We would not have gotten here on our own — lactation consultants saved us.

Get someone to help you around the clock with the early feedings.  Involve your partner, because you don’t want to be alone in this.  Eventually you will start to feel like you (the one with the boobs) are self-sufficient and you don’t need to wake him/her, but until then, it is crucial to have the extra set of hands and the moral support.

If possible, pump when it doesn’t make you hate your life.  I like to pump while I eat my breakfast if someone else is available to amuse Maia, or I take advantage of the time (and the hands-free pump bra) by doing a two handed activity like typing while pumping (if Maia is sleeping/otherwise occupied).  MAYBE I AM PUMPING RIGHT NOW!!

Optimize your logistics.  While it would be nice if new parents automatically acquired the skill of telekinesis, humans have not yet evolved to this level.  When I sit down to feed Maia, I have been using the side of the couch with a table on my left and a tray on my right, so I have places on EACH side of me to place my water bottle, snack, remotes, phone, kindle, etc.  I can reach them easily to keep myself entertained and nourished, so I don’t get jealous of my baby who is feeding her chubby little face.

-On a similar note, take the time to set yourself up with whatever you need/want BEFORE you latch your baby.  Babies are not patient while they are hungry.  I have noticed that Maia nurses better and nursing is more comfortable for me if I support the boob she is on with my hand, which means I have one hand available for other activities while she is latched.  I’ve learned to tolerate her crying for a moment or two while I make myself comfortable, because Maia doesn’t want an annoyed and frustrated mommy.

Pay attention to your body mechanics.  This topic deserves its own post… if I ever figure out how to make it work.  But generally, make sure you have back support, are not rounding your shoulders forward too far, and try to hold your wrist in neutral (still working on this – I have numbness in hands… problem). Consider using a stool under your feet, multiple pillows behind your back, and a nursing pillow (I prefer My Brest Friend).

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No matter what, feeding your baby is not likely to be easy, whether you are using formula or breastfeeding.  When you are getting exhausted with your method, remind yourself of WHY you made the choice you did.  AND remind yourself that the other option also has its disadvantages – If you are a mom who formula-fed, I’m sure you could write your own post like this about the woes of bottle-feeding.  When you are losing patience and can’t believe you are up at 3 in the morning, take a deep breath and just look at your sweet, innocent baby who completely depends on you to survive, and thank God, the Universe, or whoever/whatever you think is out there, for him or her.

 

 

 

 

Thoughts on Our Birth Experience

Hello internet!  We have a baby now!!

I haven’t had a chance to sit down at the computer lately, but I have had my phone at my side, setting timers for breastfeeding, listening to Spotify, podcasts, and NPR, scrolling through Facebook and Instagram with ridiculous regularity (all usually while breastfeeding) and, occasionally even talking on the phone… (again, usually while breastfeeding… even if I don’t tell you that’s what I’m doing while we’re talking – Now you know… sorry!).  Though I haven’t blogged until now, I have created a note file on my phone with jottings of topics and various things to mention in future posts about the experience in the hospital and in these early days of parenting.

When I get around to it, I will definitely post Maia’s full birth story here for all the pregnant ladies who are as desperately hungry for birth stories as I was early in my pregnancy, but for now I just want to offer a few thoughts.  Please, keep in mind that these are my feelings and my experience, and I offer them without any judgement of yours.

Our beautiful Maia Holly was born on the evening of July 6th via caesarian section. As you know if you have been talking to me or reading this blog, I was hoping to deliver naturally.  However, all things considered, I am very thankful to have a healthy, beautiful, wonderful baby, an intact pelvic floor, and no complications with my recovery thus far.

Our doula came over last week for a post-partum visit and she mentioned that a prospective client had asked her, “How many of your births have been successful?”  It’s an odd notion, the notion of a “successful birth.”  While I didn’t “succeed” in having a natural delivery (which had been the “goal”), I don’t feel the experience can be evaluated by asking the question of “were we successful?”  As far as I can tell, we did what we could to go naturally, and having to have a c-section wasn’t something I, my doula, or my doctor was in control of, so I don’t look at it as a failure.  Throughout the induction, labor, operation, and birth, my husband and I were respected and cared for and our desires were known.  We were informed of all our options, and given time to consider them, and did not feel pressured in any way by my doctors or nurses.  I was given the space and opportunity to work through contractions for as long as it was medically safe.  Though I still wish I had been able deliver naturally, I know that we made the right decision to have the c-section rather than risk distress for our baby.

One of our first pictures together.  So perfect.

I am amazed how differently I feel looking at the question of labor and birth from this side.  When I was pregnant, The Birth seemed SO important.  But now that I have a baby and am home caring for her and feeding her, and soothing her and bathing her, I have a new perspective– I see that labor and the delivery method is only ONE PIECE of being a parent, and that having a child and raising a child entails so much more.  The moment after Maia was out and I was sewed up, we were on to the next things: marveling at her, bonding with her, feeding her, and making sure she adjusted to life outside the womb as healthily as possible.  I did not distress over the fact that the cord clamping was not delayed very long (no doubt because I was open and needed to be closed up).  I did not fuss because Maia was checked by the doctor on the side of the operating room immediately after birth before she was given to Brian (they said this had to happen with a c-section and it was so brief and quick– she was in his arms and cheek to cheek with me almost immediately).  In those moments we became parents, and the little things didn’t matter so much.

While I do feel that having an ideal birth experience and circumstances would have been a great way to welcome our child and set her up for a healthy and happy life, everything we do moving forward will continue to promote this, and there is so much more of her life and ours to come.

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I mean, seriously, just look at her! What more could you ask for?
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Happy.  One of us might be pooping.  But we’re definitely happy.

Due Date!

June 24th – 40 weeks pregnant

So, it’s officially Baby Uri’s due date. Yesterday was my last day at work, I am ready to do this labor thing. It’s kinda unfair… I mean, when you train for a marathon, you typically know exactly when the marathon is going to take place.  In my situation… well… I know the “marathon” is going to occur… but not exactly when. And if it doesn’t occur by July 5th, I will have to run the marathon while receiving jolts of electricity/Pitocin, and then I will probably end up doing it without feeling my legs.  Can you imagine running a marathon when you can’t feel your legs?* Medically induced labor is a little terrifying…

I try to avoid things that I find terrifying, so I’m trying what I can to promote labor… Fresh pineapple is supposed to get things moving, so today I made a smoothie out of half a pineapple and a strawberry Chobani Yogurt.  Not the ideal ingredient, but it’s what I had at home.  And it was… disgusting. I was literally gagging.  I added some honey which helped only a little.  But I remembered what I learned in college: I chugged, and down it went. Job done.

Brian and I went for a walk this morning before it got too hot.  Walking is pretty much the only physical exercise that appeals, and after I walk I am so excited to get my shoes off.  I have hippo-feet and sausage fingers, and it’s not sexy.  When I do go for a walk, after a few minutes, I have to pee because of the pressure down on my bladder.  I have been wearing compression stockings at work this past week and a half, and I relish the ritual of removing them, and my shoes, at the end of the day — feels sooo good to let those doggies breathe.  I won’t miss many things about being pregnant.

The one thing I will miss is how nice people are to pregnant ladies.  When you’re pregnant, people don’t tell you that “the restrooms are for customers only.”  I got so many well wishes and hugs this week from patients (even some that I didn’t even treat once). Random people in the elevator and in my building have been congratulating me and telling me how great I look.  Co-workers have been cleaning my treatment tables for me because they don’t want me to be exposed to our awful-smelling chemical cleaner.  The other day I did a truly pregnant thing and went “mall walking.”  Afterward, a lady came up to me in the Chick-fil-a line like we were old friends and said “you look like you are made for this!”  Of course people will also ask you things things that would be totally inappropriate at any other time like “how much weight did you gain?” Even now, that question is a little borderline… (if you are wondering, I gained a good 30 lbs, so I have done my part).

I am feeling very loved these days, which is wonderful, and really I’m pretty relaxed.  I have been listening to the tracks of positive affirmations on my hypno-birthing app:

“My baby knows how to be born.”

“I look forward to meeting my baby when my baby and my body are ready.”

“Birth is a natural, safe, and wonderful experience.”

And my favorite:

“My body is at ease.” because when the lady says it in her British accent sounds like: “My body is a tease.”

I’ll continue to choke down my pineapple and do my best to relax and not worry, so that labor will happen when it is meant to. It’s weird, but having a medically induced birth with pain meds is a lot scarier to me than giving birth naturally, but by writing this I don’t mean to judge anyone.  I have educated myself as much as I can stand to, and I know that even if I do all I can to aid my body in going into labor, it may not, and I will surrender.  In any case, it’s very exciting to know that I will meet my baby within the next 11 days!  Sweet baby, we are ready for you!

 

*This is probably NOT what labor with an epidural is like… (I really have no idea). And actually, running a marathon without feeling my legs would probably be MUCH more pleasant than the other way around.

Almost a Momma

38 Weeks Preggers —

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Feeling like a bad-ass pregnant lady for a few minutes after a great day at work. Headed to my mat for another session of Yoga for Beer Bellies (TM pending).

Well, Baby, we are almost at the end of this phase, and we will be meeting face to face soon.  I haven’t written much in these past few months.  Your dad and I have been nesting like crazy.  We have a beautiful room ready for you filled with sweet, thoughtful gifts from friends and family who are fans of yours already.  Our hospital bag is packed, with 2 outfits, and socks and a hat and blankets for you.   You are moving around and kicking and tapping more consistently now; almost any time I hold still I can feel you moving.  The past week, and especially this weekend, I have been SO SLEEPY.  I slept basically the whole weekend, except when we were at another childbirth class and when we met with Elaine, our doula.  I guess that is good, because hopefully it means you are growing strong.  I think I have also been sleeping because as the weeks continue to add up, I have started worrying a bit: When will you come?  Will it be one or 3 weeks after I stop working?  If you come later than expected, will I perish from boredom and drive myself crazy waiting for you?  Will you be in the ideal LOA (Left Occiput Anterior) position for a natural birth?  Am I drinking enough raspberry leaf tea/eating enough fresh pineapple/doing enough of the “natural birthy” things to ensure I don’t have to be induced with meds?  Even though I generally worry a lot less these days, I worry a bit still.  I haven’t had significant contractions, nor have I noticed any other signs of your immediately approaching arrival.

So today I talked to my boss, who is pretty confident that my baby is coming in July, and we decided to open up 3 more days of my schedule to patients (I was going to stop a week before my due date – now I’m going to continue until 3 days before, and we may even add more days at the end of the week.  I feel much more relaxed just knowing I will have something to do those days, because truthfully, I feel better after working today than I did all weekend.  I will eat fresh pineapple, maybe not a whole pineapple a day (which was recommended).  I may make some more raspberry leaf tea, but I will drink it before bed and make sure I am also drinking enough water (because I noticed I was getting headaches after drinking it).  I will do recommended exercises for helping you get into a good position for birth, but I will not obsess about it – you’re still moving a lot. I will continue living my life, napping as my body tells me to, and taking walks and doing yoga when my body tells me to.

I have certainly slowed down A LOT during this pregnancy. It has been an interesting time for me—as I have mentioned before, it is strange for me to not be feeling great physically. In many ways, it has been good to slow down and focus on this very significant life change.  My days of arm-balances, and working on handstands at yoga, and hiking 10 miles of AT Rollercoaster for fun on a Saturday are simply on hold. My strong body has done some amazing things, but making you, Baby, is the most amazing thing it has done yet.  We look forward to snuggling you!

Love,

YOUR MOM.  ❤