Sunday, May 20, 2012

31Weeks Pregnant

I made it to the single digits! Yep, only nine weeks left and that means it is time to get ready for baby.

This week I set up his room. We got his crib built and his bedding washed, ironed and made and curtains hung. The swing is built, the bouncer in the corner and the carseat scrubbed down and washed. I painted over some scratches and dents in his crib and scrubbed every last inch of everything. I want it to be new for him. Then I prepared his baby stuff and set up a list of things I need to buy each week over the next couple of months. Not a lot to buy, but we do need a few things, like diapers, wipes, hangers, socks and pajamas. Just small things but nothing I am going to want to run out to the store and buy when we get home from the hospital.

It was really good for me, well us, to set up his room and buy baby stuff. I have been excited but now I am REALLY excited. I get that butterfly feeling in my belly and have thought plenty about labor. I constantly have braxton hicks! My stomach hardens up into a ball and cramps, but nothing abnormal and it just feels like a menstrual cramp. I had braxton hicks all the time with Lincoln, but every time my belly tightens, I wonder if I will go into pre-term labor. My belly has been developing a faint line down it for awhile but it is really clear now. I got it with Lincoln too. Both my sisters didn't get it and most girls I know don't. The nice thing about it is after the baby is born the line gives this optical illusion like I have a six pack, haha, I am totally kidding. Eventually it fades. Also my belly button is starting to go all outty on me, well half of it is and the other half is really deep. All sorts of funny.

Lincoln still asks every day if baby can come out and play and loved setting up his room with me.
I haven't been exercising at all, but we have started swimming in our pool and almost every night we relax in the hot tub. These past few weeks has been really relaxing to me and I have been soaking up every moment. With Lincoln I was completely worried about something being wrong or him coming too early, facial defects, deformities, you name it. I would literally sit on the computer and Google every possible thing that could go wrong during labor or what horrible disabilites my baby could have. I would cry, stress and have anxiety over it. Every time Lincoln wasn't kicking I would be in tears. I am not sure what the difference is this time but I have felt completely at peace. It might be that I miscarried two babies and know that there is simply nothing I can do to stop bad things from happening. Whatever God decides to do, he will do, and I have just left it in his hands. There is no sense in worrying myself sick over every "if", and "if" something does happen I will deal with it then.

I am also SO excited to see my mom and dad! They will be here on the 24th of July to help. Scott and I were talking about how it seems more real that my parents are coming than that a baby is coming. I have to remind myself that they are coming to see my baby and not me because I keep wanting to plan activities to do with them. Then I remember the only activity I will be wanting to do is sleep.

I scheduled a doctors appointment for next week. I guess we will see if I even like this doctor, but I will only see him possibly four times before I deliver, so I sadly don't care too much. I will deliver in the same building my appointments are in, so yet again a huge building.

Overall, I'm doing great and baby is growing fast! Over these next weeks he will be growing half a pound a week and is already four pounds! Four pounds! I swear he has got to be more like twenty pounds because that's what it feels like. Not too much room in there.

Here is the belly! As a side note, this skirt is the only one I will be wearing to church anymore. Last week to fit in a dress I had to have Scott zip it up. He was laughing so hard because there literally was four inches between the zippers by my shoulders. I ended up wearing a jacket over it in case the entire back ripped out. I have three pairs of pants that fit and I usually walk around with the zipper undone anyways.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Epidural or No Epidural

I find it quite sad the war that goes on between women who deliver naturally and those who take the epidural. There is no special award for going through hours of a painful labor and it certainly does not make you a better mom or more of a woman than someone who chooses to skip the pain. Of course it didn't start at labor and it doesn't end there either. Many women can't conceive on their own without the help of medicine, some can't conceive at all and choose adoption. Does that make them less of a mom? Certainly not, and it definitely doesn't make them any less womanly than Miss Fertile Myrtle. After labor, some women struggle to breastfeed and resort to formula. Some women don't even bother to try breastfeeding at all. Some will breastfeed for eighteen months. Whether baby is fed with breastmilk or formula doesn't matter. Guess why? No matter what route we go to get our baby, no matter what process that baby comes and how that baby is fed, the final goal is the same for all of us, we want a baby to love and care about and we are doing the best we can. So let's all stop judging and pointing fingers at eachother.

With that said, let me go back to epidurals. When I delivered Lincoln, I planned on getting an epidural from the beginning and when the time came to have him, it worked out that I was able to receive the epidural. Everything went more than smooth. I had no negative effects from the drug and it ended up being the best twelve hours of my life. After getting the epidural I ran into a number of women who went naturally and some who wished to go naturally. I thought they were amazing! Hours of pain was something that I was not willing to experience. All of the ladies were sweet, they respected my method and I respected them. In fact I didn't even know about this "epidural war" until I met a girl who insisted on forcing her opinion on everyone and even told me, "If people who got epidurals actually did the research they wouldn't get one" or my favorite "I would never take the risk of hurting my baby". Mind you, she has never had a baby and likes to press parenting advice too. I always kept my mouth shut, but it seems quite silly to think that women who get epidurals are uneducated and selfish. I did my research and was overly impressed with how few risks come from the epidural. Before having Lincoln, I thought I might end up paralyzed if I got one. Thankfully I DID the research and found this NOT to be the case. There are always going to be risks dealing with any drug and it is important to know these risks, but there are also benefits.

This time around I have thought about going naturally. One of my friends just had her baby naturally and her birth story is so absolutely beautiful that it made me think about not getting an epidural. However, after re-reading my own labor story I realized my experience was just as wonderful and I hope this time goes as great as last time. That's the beauty of it all, no matter what you decide to do it is your story and that makes it the best!

Because I have never experienced going natural, I can't give advice on it. But I can tell my experience on getting an Epidural. Here are some of the benefits from my personal experience:
-No pain
-I got to laugh and joke around with my husband for hours and not worry a moment about anything.
-I got to take a nap and get some energy for the active labor.
- I could talk on the phone and keep family updated about how labor was going.
-My body was completely relaxed and I didn't suffer any emotional or psychological effects from the pain.
-When it came time to push, the nurses let me know and baby was out in a half-hour.
-I got complete attention from the nurses as they constantly needed to check my blood pressure and IVs.
-After labor, I had zero pain and recovery was painless. No joke, it was painless.
-I have no fear or anxiety over labor this time around and look forward to delivery because it was literally the most enjoyable twelve hours of my life.

This was my experience. I was one of the very common who don't experience any effects, but there is always that chance. Do the research. Look up the risks, but don't Google and try to find the one in a million horror story because if you want to find proof that an epidural will kill you, you will find it. Believe me, I was positive my Lincoln was going to come out with two heads because it has happened before.

I have decided to go with an epidural because that is what is right for my baby and me.

Whatever you decide is up to you and don't let anyone make you feel inferior or lesser of a woman for your choice. Remember it is your story to tell, so live it how you want to!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

30 Weeks Pregnant

I made it to the 30's! I made it to the 30's! I seriously cannot believe that I am basically seven months pregnant. Yay! Time is definitely flying by and although I am not quite ready for baby to be here I am definitely getting there. Soon I will be hoping for the little guy to make his appearance but I am not to that point yet. Getting there.

Lincoln on the other hand is beyond excited and ready. He thinks I am growing a best friend for him to play with, which I am, but he won't come out throwing balls and pushing trucks around like Lincoln is hoping for. Several times a day he asks if he can come out yet and play. He asks if he is sleeping, or kicking me and sometimes will put toys on my belly for the baby to kick. It makes me so happy that he is already bonding with baby when he isn't here yet. Of course he will struggle when he comes and has to share our attention, but I think being older and understanding will make it easier to explain.

I have once again felt great this week. A few weeks ago I was in way worse pain than I am now. Which is kind of backwards, but my body just needed to adjust to the changes. I started sewing a few things for baby and preparing his room. It still has a long way to go, but there is plenty of time.

I have to find another doctor because we moved. Gag! This will be number four. It makes it difficult for me to even want to schedule an appointment so I keep putting it off.

I am nervous to add another person to the family and so we have spent a lot of time together enjoying these last months as just the three of us. It really makes me enjoy everyday moments and not wish away my pregnancy that I see so many expectant mothers do. Pregnancy is an exciting time and as painful as it is, don't wish it away. There are so few times you will get to experience that kicking baby and many women who can't experience it ever, so enjoy the moments and the time with your family before baby arrives.

This week baby is the length of a cucumber and approaching 3 lbs. He is getting stronger and stronger and could now grasp my finger tightly.

I definitely feel his kicks getting stronger but they feel more like shoves because he has very little room to swing a leg. I have gained 23 pounds. I wore a tight shirt so you can really see how big my belly is. I love it! I couldn't be prouder and I tell anyone and everyone I am pregnant.
Look at that big belly!

And here is my bare belly

Monday, May 7, 2012

29 weeks pregnant

These last couple of weeks have been wonderful! Baby is growing and weighs in at 2 1/2 pounds! He moves all the time and we all love watching my belly roll with movement. Pregnancy has become a natural part of my life. It is hard to imagine my stomach not moving and I can't remember what it was like to have a flat stomach. It seems like this buldge has always been here and as strange as it might be, it is comforting.  I don't "feel" pregnant because I can't quite remember what not being pregnant feels like.

We recently moved again and it was a last minute decision that forced me to pack up the entire house by myself. I even loaded half the U-haul. Scott had to work and I was forced to do it alone. We then moved and unloaded in basically one day. Thankfully we had some family in Everett to help us unload furniture and Scott's cousin helped us load. As awful as those two days were, I am so happy to be in our new place! It is beautiful and it makes me excited to decorate baby's room!

Not a lot to say. I gained two pounds making the total 23. I have become quite awkward. When I try to stand up I fall down because my balance is off. I have also started snoring and sometimes it gets loud and I wake up myself. I pee like every hour during the day, but only once or twice at night.

Here I am and a small look at what I packed: