Thursday, 24 February 2011

Two weeks 'til due date

Well, I made it to another appointment and from now on I'll get to see Dr. Swedish every week until it's show time. He didn't think the spotting I've been having is anything but changes to my cervix happening so I'm still holding out for that elusive Bloody Show. Hopefully the next status will be a birth story rather than another one of these. 
Impatient? Me? Naaaaah :)

How far along?

Bubba's chunk-o-meter: 
Apprx. 20 inches / 51 cm, 
Dr. Swedish's guesstimate this week is 7.5-8 lbs / 3.4-3.6 kg - He better get here soon!

My total chunk-o-meter: 
17 lbs / 7.7 kg - Actually lost a pound since last appt.

Stretch marks? 
No, but I feel bruised on the inside from being kicked in the same spot right beneath my right rib.

Belly button status? 
Stretched, but not an outie... don't think it will actually pop.

Counting sheep? 
Have to use my hands to help lift the belly over every time I switch sides. Get up to pee a ridiculous amount of times per night. Have been sweating like a piglet the past few nights, soaking the bed linen - very glamorous!

Foods I can't live without: 
Tomatoes, avocados and kiwis are still at the top of my list. I'll also confess to eating copious amounts of chocolate lately... mmmm... Nutella!

Foods I can't stand: 
Greasy food - fun going down, not so fun coming back up.

Best moments this fortnight: 
• Valentine's day - Diver Dude surprised me with a big bear holding a box of chocolates when I walked upstairs to make coffee in the morning and took me out to a romantic dinner that night.
• Labor Rehearsal - read all about it here.
• Making a belly cast :)
 It was a wet mess and demanded a patient husband, a semi-naked wife and lots of laughter.
 With a little paint, I made it look like this. Once Bubba is here I'll write his name, birth date and stats in the ribbon.

Worst moments this fortnight: 
Different kinds of pain. Pain in the belly. Pain in the cervix. Pain in the ass... not knowing when this little guy plans to make an entrance.

No more flips, there's simply no room left, but lots of stretching, punching and kicking.

Nose bleeds are back, didn't miss that at all. Ligament pains, Braxton Hicks, cervical pain. 

It's a man-child.

What I miss? 
Sex, Sleeping on my back, Sauvignon, Sushi, Sashimi, Stilton.

What I'm looking forward to? 
Labor, is that totally weird? I just want this show on the road so we can meet this little circus child.

Monthly Wisdom
Make the most of those energy bursts because the next day you might not be able to get out of bed.

Having an internal check. I must say I feared this one because I've heard it can hurt like a MOFO, but it was a piece of cake... if that cake was accompanied by somebody kicking you gently in the ding-ding. 
I'm 1cm dilated, 75% effaced, Bubba's head down and we're ready to rock 'n roll!

I'm ready, anxious, and excited! Did I mention I'm ready?

Last but not least I'd like you to go over to Keiko's important post about restrictive legislation regarding unborn children.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Bloody Show?

Yesterday I was wiped out, woke up only to crawl straight back into bed. Nauseous all day and couldn't eat anything after breakfast. Today, this morning, I got up to a gushing nose bleed and now when I went to the bathroom I discovered several pinkish streaks in my underwear. Could this be the start of something? Could this be what they call bloody show?

Dear Bubba,
Ready when you are. 
Can't wait to see you. 
Kiss you. 
Love you. 
Spank your little butt.
Let's get this show on the road baby.
Love, Mamma

Friday, 18 February 2011

Labor Rehearsal

How can you rehearse something that is completely different from woman to woman and even pregnancy to pregnancy?
How do you explain the excruciating pain you're about to go through but that somehow isn't bad enough to stop women from doing this more than once?

Last night 16 very pregnant women and their very anxious husbands sat down in a circle in a basement room at the RAF Lakenheath hospital hoping to find out the secrets of one of life's biggest events.

To start the night off with a bang we were shown a short movie of several women giving birth while we tried to eat some of the treats everybody brought. I'll tell you this, chili and lil' smokies just don't taste the same when watching a baby's head squeezing out of somebody's stretched-to-it's-limits lady-bits.

After the movie and the few bites of food we managed to eat we all did a show-and-tell with our "to-go" bags. Most contained expected items like cameras, robes and adorable baby clothes and some included less common things like knitting projects and shower shoes. I think we all got a few good ideas from each other and one thing I want to get is a non toxic ink pad and paper since the hospital doesn't give you your baby's first footprint if you don't bring the supplies.

Then the actual rehearsal started. This is when the fun began. We were all given a clothespin each, asked to attach it to the sensitive skin underneath the top of our arms close to our arm pits, leave them on for 60 seconds and continue a normal conversation with our husbands. Yikes. Interestingly enough, most of the squeals of pain came from the men in the room. This was repeated every five minutes. Next we were shown different ways to stand and breathe to better deal with the pain of the clothespin. There was the eight-grade school dance move (chin to chin), the ninth-grade school dance move (butt to crotch) and the squat and curl move. Some of us made up our own moves, like the ninth-grade behind the school move (pressed up against the wall face to face). Diver Dude found it very amusing that when he was in ninth grade I wasn't actually born yet.

During these "contraction experiments" we all moved through the hospital like a big pregnant herd towards L&D met by concerned and confused looks from bystanders.

When we all bruised and giggly finally got to L&D we were given a quick tour of one of the delivery rooms. I was pleasantly surprised to find a comfy, newly renovated room with all kinds of creature comforts like private bathroom, big bed, birthing ball and a flat screen TV. Our mid-wife then quickly selected two of the husbands for a show and tell. One of the boys were put in the bed, hooked up to several monitors, and complimented on his beautiful labor and full dilation. He was then instructed to try out a number of ways to push cheered on by his male partner. He pushed on his back with legs up in the air, he pushed side-ways while his partner held his leg back, he pushed leaned up against the back of the bed and he pushed using the squatting bar attached to the bed. I'm surprised none of us went into labor from laughing so hard at the poor guy holding his legs back while violently grunting and focusing on his partners count down from ten.

Labor Rehearsal was a fun experience and if the big day includes any of the humor and lightheartedness of last night I'm game. And if real contractions feel anything like a clothespin pinching your skin - bring it on!

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Four weeks to go...

I'm suffering from a drawn out brain fart. And I honestly think time is moving twice the speed it normally does. I feel like I have so much to tell you and as soon as I sit down to get it into words - pffffftt! I have the attention span of a nat and get distracted easier than a two-year-old at Chucky Cheese. Anyway, since this is a fixed format it's a little easier to bring my mushy brain to perform for a few minutes. But after seeing Dr. Swedish today for our 36 week check up I'm starting to think monthly updates just won't cut it anymore. After establishing that Bubba's head is waaaay down in my pelvis he told me with a big grin on his face to "make another appointment in two weeks, if you're still pregnant by then." 

You guys, it looks like this Circus Performance could start any day now!

How far along?

Bubba's chunk-o-meter: 
Apprx. 20 inches / 51 cm, 
According to Dr. Swedish's guesstimate Bubba now weighs in at 7.5 lbs / 3.4 kg - He also predicts Bubba will be well over 8 lbs by the time of delivery - HOLY BUBSTER! 

My total chunk-o-meter: 
18 lbs / 8.2 kg - All that food I'm eating is going straight to the little hungry man in my belly.

Stretch marks? 
Knocking on wood - maybe I won't get any? Varicose veins on my thigh has mystically appeared over the past two months though... grrrrrowl.

Belly button status? 
Not completely out, not sure if it will. Still weird/disgusting when somebody touches it.

Counting sheep? 
Crazy dreams are back! No need for adventure books or movies, all I need is a couple of hours of snoozing and I'm in some high-speed chase in a stolen car chased by bad guys.

Foods I can't live without: 
Tomatoes and avocados are still yummy but right now I crave kiwis!! Not the birds, the fruit.

Foods I can't stand: 
While fish and chips taste really great going down, I can't seem to keep it down. Same thing with everything super greasy

Best moments this month: 
• Baby shower - this is one of those things I should dedicate a post to, but can't seem to gather my thoughts long enough to actually do so. 
In short: 
I cried happy tears in the car going over there thinking of how distant the possibility of me having a baby shower seemed not too long ago. 
Instead of cards I got everyone's favorite children's book - can't wait to start reading them to Bubba. 
MOTHER sent a massive gift and completely shocked both me and Diver Dude - she's not the loving grandma/mother/mother-in-law type, quite the opposite actually. But she seems genuinely excited about having a grandson! 
Lots and lots of itty-bitty clothes now fill the drawers in Bubba's room
• A good friend from Seattle who struggled with IF for almost ten years  came to visit with her hubby - after turning 40, moving across the Atlantic, getting a small house and building a new child-free life - she's pregnant!! Due just about a month after us!

Worst moments this month: 
Again this needs a post of it's own but it'll have to be squished into this. Sex. Or rather, lack of sex. As the weeks pass and I feel sexier than ever, happy and filled with confidence, Diver Dude, well... he's just not that into it. He struggles to adjust to my growing belly and the fear of poking Bubba in the eye is just turning him off. Sigh. 

Crazy boy! Now that he's running out of room those movements can knock the wind out of me. Kicks to the ribs, punches to the cervix and stretching in all directions makes for a comfortable mama :)

We have a new player on the scene this month. A sharp, pinching, gradually building pain in the cervix that comes and goes. I'm guessing contractions. If that's what they feel like now... It's gonna HURT LIKE A MOFO!! 

It's a boy. And if he keeps growing at this rate he'll come out with a full beard!

What I miss? 
Good red wine. Or what it used to taste like. It still smells divine, but if I take a sip it's rancid! I hope my taste buds go back to normal. 

What I'm looking forward to? 
Labor rehearsal on February 17th - it was postponed. I think it'll include a walk-through of my hospital's L&D, going over labor and breathing techniques, and a show-and-tell of your hospital bags.
Meeting my baby boy.

Monthly Wisdom
Napping during the day is perfectly fine. In fact, it should be mandatory.

Bubba is head down and ready to go! We're at term. 

Excited and tired. A little nervous about the pain involved with delivery, but still maintaining the cool-ish attitude of "que sera, sera". At the same time I'm curious how I will cope, and feel kind of "pumped" for the event. Ask me again when this show hits the road :)