And motherhood begins

I only began feeding him today really, and I’m not producing enough for him yet so he’s on formula.

They gave him a dummy to settle him (which he now seems kind of addicted to) so I’m hoping he still latches when I can breastfeed properly. So far I’ve only breastfed him once properly!

I have to express about every 3 hours to increase my flow, which is really taxing, and overwhelmingly hard to juggle around hospital meal times, sleeping, visiting hours, exercises, and check-ups!

I’m being kept in hospital overnight, I should be home tomorrow but bubsy has to stay for a week at least I think, though he is on the improve. He is being normalised, and is now in an open crib and out of the humidity crib. He is on his own with breathing now and the antibiotics are over, but he’s being fed a combo of NAN formula and my colostrum through a drip mainly.

This whole experience has been soooo utterly surreal. Just… WOW!

Surgery and Recovery

9:00am They took him away mid-feed and I was whisked away to get a Spinal, and umpteen – zillion stitches over 45 mins, with lots of bleeding and morphine. They put my feet in stirrups which were SOOOOOOOOOO comfy, with giant leather padding, and even a lovely padded leather armrest!

I think because of the shock, the numbness, and the oxytocin I was a bit giddy, and out of it, and I was very bubbly through the majority of the procedure, until I began to shiver violently and I felt very cold. They said it was due to the air-conditioning and sterilization mechanism used in the room, and they got me several blankets. I was a nervous fidgeter, and I kept knocking off the pulse monitor from my finger.

The surgeons were pretty chuffed to see a patient all giggly and happy like me. I think it’s a rarity for them. I was wishing them all a merry Christmas, and asking the Indian guy next to me about his Christmas plans, and about Indian songs he liked before I said I liked “Sun Sun Sandri”, and sang it for him, I’d been teaching this to Indian brothers last term.

The surgeons were generally pretty nice back to me, and in good spirits, except when I found out I was their second patient for their shift that day, and I asked the Indian guy about the lady before me. He frowned and said she had an abortion – OOPS. They played some 80s and 90s songs from the youtubes to lighten the mood, and I recall telling the lady who gave make the spinal that I liked her Christmassy earrings and her eyes lit up.

After the main part of the surgery even though I was still severely numb, I could feel them pressing very hard on the stomach. They said it was very important, and that it’s better to do it now, while I couldn’t feel anything, so I shrugged and agreed. They sucked me up off the bed with some super amazing inflatable parachute thingy, which was pretty fun, and put me on another bed.

I really wanted to know how many stitches there were, but they refused to tell me. Many people have said it was just one massive long stitch. When I asked the main surgical guy after he just said “Well, you smiled on the way in and out, so it can’t be THAT bad.”

I was wheeled to the recovery room, where my very gay attendant, Louis was pointing out all the flaws that the surgical team had made, such as failing to use the correct size cuff for talking my blood pressure, (My arm had many bruises from this, which Louis moisturised for me.) Also they failed to give the spinal report, failed to mention that morphine had been administered, and failed to do some kind of ice test on my skin during the procedure. They had also neglected to take the catheter to my leg, so if I had moved, I could’ve damaged my bladder. CHARMING!

Louis was very concerned that he was going to miss out his place in “the que” to leave and do…. something else. There was a very bossy foreign woman who was trying to cut the que and was SHUT DOWN by the woman on duty. The staff were quite negligent, and overlooked several times to find out what room I was meant to be taken to, so I had to wait about another hour before anyone bothered to find me a recovery room and take me there.

I ended up being taken to the room I’m in now, which isn’t regularly used, but there’s so many women here today apparently. There’s a spare bed, which I was told would be for another lady. (I was told this at 5pm. It’s now 2.40am and there’s no lady, so that woman was a bloody liar when she said I couldn’t use the pillow on the other bed!)

I was left there for hours without anyone telling me where hubby or baby were, and they had neglected to give me lunch. I had to ask several staff members several times before any food was brought to me. Considering I hadn’t eaten anything since 1am, I didn’t appreciate having to wait until about 4pm to eat! All I got was some stale old sandwich… in fact only 1 hour later some lady came to bring me her gruel dinner. I didn’t even get a choice in the food, and I only got to eat some of it because I fell asleep, and by the time she came back I was about to start on the cup of tea, but she was a bit rude and took it. During this time hubby had gone home to get a few things, such as my phone, laptop, pillows, and some food!

Labour!

4:10am The reception area, to the birthing unit, was very dark and quiet, apart from a lit up Christmas tree. I waited in the waiting room for probably 10-20 mins before they showed me into the low-risk birthing unit.

4:30am This room had the massive double bed, and a MASSIVE bathroom, so I was stoked!

4:40am They did a CTG scan of me and bubs, which was VERY annoying, as the belly bands were really tight and cutting into my skin, and I was unable to move around. Bubsy kept moving in there, so hubby had to keep a finger on the egg thingy for aaaaaaages.

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5:15am Rachel said I was 2 fifths engaged at this point. Which is how far the baby’s head is down into the pelvis.

5:25am Finally after I’d had some rather painful contractions, and felt like I needed to poo, they checked me (which really hurt) and they said I hadn’t begun dilating yet, and that my waters hadn’t actually broken based on the fact that I had “no ferns” in my fluid…(which I think is a totally inaccurate way of telling!)

about 10-20 mins later the contractions were so bad I was convulsing and shaking uncontrollably on the bed. They kept annoying me with the stupid scan, and they wanted to take my blood pressure and ll this other stuff, but I was too focused on the pain. It felt better on my right side for some reason. The main nurse said I should probably be sent home at that point, but I was sooo scared of the thought of this much pain at home, unsupervised, with NO pain relief! I couldn’t believe that THIS was the onset of labour! I just couldn’t comprehend how it was THAT painful if it was only the beginning.

5:35am They asked me to pee in a cup, so they could analyse it. But only more amniotic fluid came out

ACTIVE PUSHING A few mins later, when the nurses had gone to attend to other patients, I sat up on the bed, leant forward, and began to push violently and uncontrollably – it’s like my body took over, and with each push I could feel fluid leaking onto the bed, but I didn’t care.

5:50am Shortly after the urge to poo was so great that I ran for the toilet and sat down, and with each contraction I just had an overwhelming urge to push even though it absolutely friggin hurt! I think I was pushing on the toilet for a fair while, gradually getting more and more vocal as the pain got more intense and the contractions were closer together an longer.

The student nurse, Rachel (who was REALLY nice) came in to check on me and didn’t quite know what to do when she saw me. she was asking if I wanted pain relief, and I was hysterical, whimpering that I was very scared and didn’t know what to do, so she went to get the nurse, and suggested Gas and Air.

6.00am My “Pain Relief”

She told me to try sitting in the shower and let the hot water run down my back. When I sat on the chair, the water was amazing, but the chair was positioned in such a way that only my right side was getting wet. I would’ve moved the chair in more, but I kept contracting, and ended up bearing down on the chair!

7:00am They said I could try gas and air so I got out the shower and by the time I was on the bed my contractions were 3 in 10 mins, but the gas and air hadn’t even arrived yet!?! I suspect this is due to shift changes of nursing staff, the fact that the ward was full, and that I was in the “low” side.

If the nurse hadn’t told me that the gas and air was ready when I was, I would’ve stayed in the warm shower because it was helping a lot, but I decided if this was the “onset of labour” then I would need some real pain relief, so I got out and laid on the bed. The nurses had checked the fluid on the bed I’d pushed out and determined that although there was no ferns in my waters at any point, that this must be my waters. (But I know that it was just additional fluid.) They then decided to admit me after all, around 7.10am, which is around the point that the student midwife, Rachel left to go home at the end of her shift.

After contractions got closer and stronger together, the Gynaecologist who had just walked in, (and was the same gyne that had told us we were pregnant at the start of all this) was fussing with needles in my arm – I was severely dehydrated so they had a rough time of it. The contraction pain was too strong for me to remember what happened with the needles and blood work from this point.

My new midwifes and nurses were talking about putting a foetal scalp on baby’s head, and wanting to check dilatation again. By this point all I could do was shake in shock on my left side and scream at the painful parts when they happened.

7:20am Because I was in so much pain, they decided to check me for dilatation again.

Much to all of our surprise, when they forced me onto my back again and opened my legs to check, they yelled out that I was crowning! (approx. 7:23.00)

One member of staff went out of the room and alerted the ward that my baby was coming! Rachel, who was on her way out, came running back in, dressed in her casual clothes and handbag in disbelief. Around this point, hubby decided to get the REAL camera out.

I stupidly asked “how dilated is that?” in absolute shock. I think at this point I said “Shit, really?” (I didn’t swear at any other time in front of anyone other than hubby (which was just a whole load of “fuck fuck fuck this hurts” while convulsing in the bed)

7:24.22am I knew I wanted to avoid tearing, so I requested that they tell me when to push and when to pant, but the stupid woman said “push slowly” which I didn’t understand at all. I asked “how?” in confusion, and she just kept telling me to push, which I thought was odd since I wasn’t even contracting at this time, but I gave one push anyway and within 22 seconds of his head crowning he was fully out! ?! He came out so fast that I’d barely registered it, and hubby-tographer was only able to capture 3 pictures of him being born, and one of my push! It just felt like a large slippery mass emerging – similar to a squid. I didn’t really have much time to process that, or anything else.

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Some obnoxious nurse yelled out “it’s a boy” despite it saying in my birth plan saying I wanted to see it for myself.

They put him straight up on my chest, and loosely placed a towel over him, and put on a blue and white beanie (which was made by volunteers) and Hubby was asked if he wanted to cut the cord, which he did. (And he kept some of it!!)

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About 5 mins later hubby pushed the big red emergency button on request from Lynn (around 7.30.) He said “It’s about to get very crowded in here.” And then heaps of people came in and were rushing around.

My belly got pushed on really hard, and this to me hurt more than the giving birth part!!! I asked them to stop, but they refused, saying it was too important. Apparently because the birth had been so quick, I was bleeding a lot, and I had a major tear down my perineum and in 2 parts of the anus…. They said its 3rd Degree, which from what I gather is the 2nd worst kind of tear. Shortly after this people stabbed my left thigh with some injections.

I bled a load on the bed and they had to stop me from bleeding and it hurt A LOT when they pushed on my belly – even more than the giving birth part.

They took the baby away and it sounded serious, almost like I could’ve died. soon after I was told that I had lost 800ml of blood, and they found it hard to stop, so they gave me an oxytocin drip to help the uterus shrink (contract) and to stop the bleeding.
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The baby was having some repertory issues unbeknownst to me, so nurses called in the paediatrician (Mark,) whom checked baby, including; oxygen levels, pulse, respiratory rate, testical descent and temperature. He wasn’t overly concerned, so he guided hubby through first nappy application and swaddling – he said he was a natural, after being surprised that Liam was our first born.

Hubby passed me my baby, which had not sunk in yet, so I hadn’t recognised what I was holding! Hubby says it seemed like I hadn’t registered that I had actually given birth, was now a mum, and that this was MY son.
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8:00am I was told to try to breastfeed the baby so he didn’t cry whilst hubby held him for my (3-hour) surgery and recovery! I tried in the left but he just wanted to lick it and wouldn’t latch. Eventually we got him going on the right side AND MAN IT HURT!!!!!! I’m not sure if he actually got anything out, but it felt like he had crocodile’s teeth or something!!! They put a catheter in my urethra which REALLY FUCKING HURTS! (In hindsight I don’t think he was latched properly, as nursing g staff hadn’t helped me latch him, and the angle was completely wrong!  – he was laid on top of me face down, whilst I was laying down.)

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My waters have broken!

We arrived home around 12.30am, and I had a piece of my chocolate birthday cake with a cup of chocolate milk as a night cap around 1am…

 2:00am I was about to fill up my drink bottle at the kitchen sink when I felt a trickle down my leg, which quickly turned into the realisation that I was uncontrollably wetting myself!
My hubby analysed the mess. There was about half a cup to a cup there, (Plus more in my maternity pad, undies, and later, in the toilet.) The fluid was sticky, with a clear / light brown-pinkish tinge, and it smelt like something totally different from urine, normal cervical juices, and cum. It wasn’t pungent or potent. So we firmly believe that this is the point at which my waters broke.
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2:10am When I went to have a shower, there were a few tiny flecks of blood, and the pad had a pink tinge on 1 edge. My contractions began at this time, but they were so very mild!

2:30am I needed to poo, so at first I wasn’t sure if the slight pain in my abdomen was poo-related or the onset of contractions, but upon wiping there was definitely blood in the region, so that confirmed it was the waters breaking. We checked, and there was no hint of Meconium in the fluid, so the baby wasn’t in danger.

2:50am Then I began timing my contractions – they were about 30 seconds long each, and hadn’t got a rhythm yet, varying from 5-10 mins apart, but they were pretty mild, and are still reminiscent of poo pain cramps after a long constipation.

I was contemplating bed time, (thinking it’d make the onset of labour more manageable, and go by quicker,) as hubby was cleaning the car and sorting out the hospital bag for when “It’s time,” but I soon realised about 10 mins later that my contractions were rather close together, despite being very mild. (every 5 mins)

3.37am I rang the assessment clinic because the contractions seemed too close together to ignore, and they said I should come in for a check-up, but that I’d most likely be sent home within 20 min or so. The phone call lasted all of 2 minutes

4:00am On the way over in the car the contractions were every 5-10 mins lasting around 30 seconds each.

 

The Waiting Game

1:00pm Hoping to fill the void, I had told my family to come visit, but by the time my immediate family were able to enter the ward after being locked out (because staff failed to open the ward to the public at the start of their visiting hours), all the nurses had come back and wanted to chat to me, so I only got to chat to them for around 5 mins before the continence nurse wanted to have a 45 min chat (which she said was only going to take 15 mins) and that used up most of the time that my family wanted to visit me, so in the end I only got to see them for about 30 mins overall. I was left alone for 3 hours after that, and I’d been told I could see the baby hours ago and I hadn’t, so I cried.

I was annoyed that no-one was taking care of me and my needs, or adhering to my birth plan, and that I was left to fend for myself for 3 hours without warning. The nurses kept contradicting each other, and the tv didn’t work because you have to use a credit card, even though its free to air, so I was bored out of my mind, and all the stuff I wanted in my bag I couldn’t reach, like my book. The internet here is infuriatingly slow and dodgy by the way! I can’t even get on Facebook or youtube! (So I finally posted this MUCH later.)

Maternaty shoot

I didn’t feel the baby kick all day.

We’d spent the day sleeping in, before going to my parents’ house around 4pm to see what the issue was with the car, as it keeps grinding on start-up and deceleration. I picked up their 13kg dog for a quick cuddle, before heading to the local oval for a half-hearted maternity shoot.

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We had a nice Chinese dinner around 7, to celebrate my Auntie’s birthday, then hubby and I had a long talk with my brother about life in general as we watched the night view of Largs Bay beach from the carpark – I remember us joking that the baby would be so overdue as I hadn’t had any Braxton Hicks or felt that the baby was engaged. We dropped off my brother, and said goodnight. We headed home for bed just after midnight, when we realised how late it was getting.

37 Week Update

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So now I’m officially “full term!”
That’s a bit of a scary notion!

We haven’t done a whole lot this week. I’ve been feeling much more tired than I have been lately, so it’s been good to have more time at home, rather than teaching. I’ve mostly been napping, sleeping in, and watching videos on youtube with my husband. I watched lots of people doing the “whisper challenge,” I watched various birth announcements and sibling announcement videos, and I found a really funny music video parody channel called “Bart Barker.” Yesterday we spent a few hours watching various “Draw My Life” vlogs on youtube, which was great! It was so interesting that most people who knew what they wanted out of life had faced some terrible struggle, and those that hadn’t faced a struggle didn’t seem to have a life plan!

My antenatal class friend added me on fb and we’ve been messaging about our pregnancy progress every few days, which has been nice.

Aside from lazing around, I’ve been doing a LOT of admin for next year – mainly sorting out lesson plans from this term, and trying to compile booklets for next year into “beginner,” “intermediate,” and “advanced.” There’s still a lot of content I need to write, but it should be quite impressive when finished. The more I do to it though the more I want to rework it and add more stuff 😛 I also need to find the time to update the policies, contracts, and website sometime soon.

My Rant

My auntie, her bf, and my nana have come over a fair few times this week – usually unannounced, and usually when we are in the middle of eating, or just about to go out shopping or something – It’s kind of annoying how they don’t tend to phone ahead, (even though they came to give me maternity clothes, apricots, and to try and fix the car – it keeps rattling really loudly, and I think we need a new one next year.)

When my dad came over about 2 weeks ago the first thing he said was “Gee, your house is messy isn’t it!” Well this was JUST after the baby shower, when only 1 person stayed to help us clean up, and I had severe sciatica an hubby was working most of the week. We had even spent several hours the day beforehand doung general tidying, so it was pretty rude for him to say that.

Worries

I’m getting worried that when bubs comes various friends and family will just turn up unannounced when I’m sleeping, changing, or feeding, etc. I’ve decided that at least for the first week or two, I’d like it to be just michael and myself adjusting, without having loads of people coming to visit, etc etc. I’ve read stories where people come over and totally intrude, overstay their welcome, pick up the baby when they’re trying to sleep, or when mum needs to rest, and try to meddle in the parenting style of the parents, etc.

My Body

After last week’s appointment, and finding out that my iron levels were slightly low I’ve been taking a daily iron tablet just to be on the safe side. I’m meant to do another blood test to double check it, as well as my thyroid function.

The sciatica has eased off a lot this week, so it’s been easier to move around and walk – sadly though it’s been crazy weather! It was boiling hot yesterday, then today it bucketed down all day, which sucks, because I was hoping to do a maternity photoshoot before I was full term. Hopefully we can squeeze one in by next week. We did attempt some in-home silhouette shots, but hubby was unhappy with his haircut (that I gave him,) and my back was too close to the flash causing it to be way too overexposed, so it makes the pics harder to edit. We may redo these too at some point.

I’m finding it harder and harder to sleep now, and I’m only getting blocks of 2-4 hours sleep at a time now. I usually wake up from heartburn, bubs kicking me hard, needing to roll over, needing to pee, or if I’m thirsty.

On Tuesday bubs was kicking a lot, and hubby swears he could feel a foot on my right side. I felt and there was a definite lump there, but I couldn’t determine what it was exactly. He deduced it must have been a foot because a hand wouldn’t be that long, a knee or elbow wouldn’t be that protruding, and his head is meant to be down. His movements are definitely a lot stronger and more painful! There doesn’t seem to be a pattern to his movements, sometimes he’s awake during the night, sometimes during the day – It’s all a bit odd. I think he kicked my ribs really hard a few days ago.

Today he was kicking quite frequently, so we filmed it again, and will upload the best of the best shortly.

My heartburn has really stepped up a notch this week – sometimes I get heartburn again before I’ve even finished the quick-eze, or within minutes of finishing it. Despite searching frequently this month, I’ve been unsuccessful in replenishing my “berry burst” quick-eze stash. I guess they’re just THAT popular.

This week I’ve been craving chocolate milk, iced coffee, fruit, and pizza the most. We made tacos on Tuesday but they were way too spicy so I only ate 1, and i cried cos my avocado wasn’t ripe yet so I couldn’t eat it. on Wednesday I got all excited cos I found a cooked supermarket chicken for only $5 but when I got home it was actually kebabs 🙁 I ate some of them anyway but they were so bland, and so not what I wanted.

On Thursday when I woke up (the first time) to pee, it really really hurt to stand up. I think the baby was in a weird position. I had to lean over to walk. The pain was so unbearable I went back to bed after, even though it was 8am,  and laid on my right side for a few hours until bubs moved again. I was pretty tired for most of the day, so despite getting a fair whack of sleep at night, I had a nap in between my students. I was peeing about every 2 hours pretty much all day.

I was so tired yesterday (friday) that I ended up sleeping about half the day away, and eating mostly junk. 🙁

I didn’t get a good night’s sleep last night, so again I had about an hours nap today and was still tired. For brekky hubby made bacon and eggs. I LOVE BACON SO MUCH RIGHT NOW!!! I think it’s my fave meat. I was so lazy that for lunch ate the foodstock (butter chicken) that I’d made and froze for when the baby comes 🙁

On Monday (in just 2 days time) I’ll be 25! I can’t believe I’ll be quarter of a century already!! It’s strange not having / making plans for such a big birthday – usually birthdays are SUCH a big deal for me! All we’ve planned is that we’ll be collecting an AWESOME cake from the cheesecake shop around 11am. We may go to Cafe Bongiorno’s and have a calzone or something for lunch or dinner, since I got a $20 birthday gift voucher for my birthday (though this can be used for a whole month.) Hubby surprised me on Friday and got me some solid gold earrings as an early present, and they are AWESOME!!!!!!! I’ve been wanting gold earrings for quite a few months now. One set are smallish hoops with simple silver patterns on them, and the other are solid gold sleepers. I think one pair is meant to be for Christmas. This is probably the most he’s ever spent on gifts for me. It’s nice to feel appreciated and loved. 🙂

Hubby Nesting

Hubby has been a bit anal with the housecleaning this week. for the last 3 days he’s been scrubbing walls and showers, mopping, etc etc etc… It’s a bit odd. he claims he’s finally hit ‘nesting mode.’ – I’m just grateful for his help, and am glad that there’s less to do now.

He ordered the baby a Dr. Seuss book collection which finally arrived this week. He read me his favourite – “Green Eggs and Ham.”

He’s also been hugging me more than usual this week, and wanting to be close – maybe he’s realising theres a limited time before 2 become 3. It’s difficult to be all cuddly now though, with bubs kicking me so much, having back pain, feeling as big as a mountain, and with it being summer now.

Baby Plans

We’ve printed up 2 copies of the birth plan and added a bit more to the hospital bag – such as a flannel, heat pack, breath mints, towels, and 2 baby swaddles that we got this week. (We got 7 swaddles for only $40 for the lot!) – Some of them retail for $50 alone!!!

Below is a pic of the swaddle types we got;

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We got Ambulance cover this week!

We’ve been debating what we’re going to call the baby if it turns out to be a girl. My husband LOVES the name “Emily”, but it’s sooooooo common, and thats the name of one of his long-term ex girlfriends, which just doesn’t gel with me, so now we’re thinking of using what would’ve been the middle name – “Claire,” which means “bright,” but we are having a hard time finding a suitable middle name for “Claire.”

My antenatal classes are over now, and I didn’t have an antenatal appointment this week, but I did see an anaesthetist on Wednesday, and he was very pro me getting an epidural. He assured me that the process was usually quite safe, and that it’s almost routine for people of my size. He also mentioned that my haemoglobin seemed low…

My weight this week was 164.2, my blood was 81/?.

On Thursday I decided to start making and freezing meals for later, as a backup if we get rundown and need to do a quick reheat, so I froze the leftover tacos, and made extra butter chicken to freeze. I was going to make spag bol too, but we ran out of veggies for the mix.

I had another physio appointment for my sciatica yesterday and the magic woman pressurised the right spots 🙂 I had my last piano lesson of the year, and my piano teacher gave us a Winnie The Pooh mobile, 2 rattles, and a brand new bright starts toy chain thing to hang off a bouncer or pram.

We got a TONNE of ex baby stuff from one of hubby’s church / tech friends today, that we spent most of the evening sorting out and photographing. There’s at least 100 books alone, and even though I was very scrupulous we ended up with quite a few toys and clothes as well. We had to go through and re-sort the nursery, because there’s just so much stuff in there now!! I’ll upload pics of this haul sometime next week.

My Dream

During my nap on Wednesday I had my first dream (that I remember) about being pregnant and having a baby. Its a bit hazy now, but basically I went into labour and went to the hospital. They told us all these rules and regulations.

Next thing I remember is hubby walking me down the main road near our place holding the baby, and having 2 hospital staff chasing us down, saying we hadn’t been cleared to go home yet, and that it was illegal to hold the baby without it being in a carrier. I remember feeling strange that I couldnt remember any of the birth, that it all flew by so fast, and that I hadn’t actually seen the baby yet!

Hubby’s mum was over when we got home to help, and she was showing me pics of some baby being born, which was a girl, so I was all confused. (I think it was some other woman’s baby from the hospital on the same day.)

I remember that our baby’s name started with a J or something, even though his name isn’t going to start with a J… and that he was so big that he fit size 00 – so I was annoyed about all the 000 stuff we had, and wondered what to do with it all.

BIRTH PLAN (so far)

Jessica Townsend’s

BIRTH PLAN

Dec/Jan 2014/2015

 

During labour and delivery I’d like:

Husband to with me at all times

To have have 1 midwife for the entire labour process if possible.

To use a tv or my laptop for entertainment and social media  if desired.

Dim lighting (especially for the actual birth.)

Ability to eat and drink when desired.

Ability for myself or husband to take pictures and film the birth and labour process.

Ability to listen to calming / meditative music if desired – most likely via laptop or phone.

Ability to take a shower / bath if desired.

To be informed of any procedures about to happen before they occur.

Husband has permission to massage me etc, and help me shower / bathe / change clothes, etc.

Ablity to wear my own clothes if I want.

Ablity to use various methods for labouring and birthing, such as squatting, kneeling, side-laying, moving around, a large gym ball / large bath / shower / walk around / birthing chair or stool where desired.

To be told when to ‘pant’ and when to push, to avoid tearing.

To be encouraged to give birth on my knees, unless an epidural was given.

Medical wishes

Always ask me and my husband for permission before performing any procedure.

It’s ok to monitor the baby if needed, though I’d like to be able to walk around  – especially in the early stages of labour. I’d prefer no internal foetal monitoring unless necessary, though a clip on the baby’s head is ok if needed.

I’d rather not be sent home if I’m 2 cm or more dilated.

Pitocin can be administered for birth of the placenta only if needed.

Gas and air is my preferred method of paid relief, and Epidural if I feel I need it, (which I probably will.)

Blood transfusion is ok if needed. I’m A positive and husband is 0 negative.

C section is ok if needed. – Insertion of a catheter is ok after the area has been numbed.

We are very against the use of forceps, and would much rather a ventouse to be used, or a c-section rather than the use of forceps.

No Pethidine or Morphine is to be administered, unless specifically requested by myself.

If the baby is breech, a C-section will be heavily considered.

If a C-section is to go ahead, I would like:

-To stay conscious  – My partner remain with me the entire time  -My hands left free so I can touch my baby  –My Partner holds baby after birth  –baby held to my face after birth  –breastfeed in the recovery room  –get extra help with breastfeeding   -use an epidural as the form of anesthesia

After the birth

Umbilical cord to be cut by husband.

Baby comes to me as soon as possible for breastfeeding after birth – Skin to Skin, though I’d like the baby to be wiped down with a towel first if covered in meconium.

I’d like to determine the gender of the baby for myself, and not to be told by nursing staff.

I’d like help with breastfeeding and looking after the baby after it’s born.

I’d like to be able to stay in hospital for a minimum of 48 hours after the birth, or at least 4 days if a caesarean is done.

I’d like to be able to rest after the birth for several hours before visitors are allowed in.

Visitors are not to use flash photography to photograph baby directly.

I’d like to be listed for the mother carer programme, and to have midwife callouts.

I would like to feed my baby:

-ONLY with my breast milk   -On baby’s demand   -With the help of a midwife or lactation consultant

Baby is NOT to be given a dummy or to be formula bottle-fed whilst in hospital, unless absolutely necessary – I’d much rather express my breast milk to be fed to baby should it need special care away from me.

I would like my Baby to be with me:

*AT ALL TIMES and sleep in my room.

I would like my partner:

*To have unlimited visiting time and stay with me over night.

If my baby is unwell, I would like:

-My partner and I to accompany him to the NICU or another facility.

-To breastfeed or provide pumped Breast milk   -To hold him as much as possible

 

36 Week Update

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So the physiotherapy was a success, the lady was really nice, and explained all about Sciatica, and confirmed that I do indeed have it. She got me to lay on my right side (fully clothed) and she applied pressure to several spots in my left bum cheek (which is apparently where the source of the pain is) and after about 15 mins of applying pressure to several sore spots, I could walk more easily, and with less pain. She gave me a few exercises to do to try and relieve the pressure, and she told me to carry around a tennis ball to sit on (and apply pressure to the sorest areas) when in pain. She said to draw an imaginary “x” over the sore bum cheek and to apply pressure over the cross point until the pain becomes less than a 3/10. I’m booked in for a repeat session on the 12th.

She said when I get cramps in my legs, or pins and needles, to stand against a wall and push – I think.

She suspects that I’ll get sciatica in the right leg – which  I definately have on and off this week. On wednesday it eased off a bit and I was able to walk with less of a limp on Wed and Thurs, but Friday and today were tough on the right leg. I’m still avoiding stairs. Sciatica in the left leg has waned this week.

On Tuesday we had a lot of time to ourselves, so we decided to clean up the house a bit and put up the tree. My auntie and her boyfriend came around to help, and to give me an early birthday present of stretchy waisted crop pants that actually fit, and a matching striped shirt with buttons for feeding in. (She got these from Autograph.) Her boyfriend fixed a few faults in our car also. We threw a late lunch / early dinner bbq for them as a thanks, complete with that french cheesecake, left over berries, and chocolate. This year we’re going with blue and silver decorations for the tree, given that we’re having a boy, and I’m sick of gold, but we don’t yet have much blue, so I hope to go shopping for some more blue things.

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We’ve decided to have christmas at my Auntie’s rental place this year, because I won’t have the energy (or the money) to host this year, and it’s too risky to be hosting such an event so close to the due date. their rental place is much larger than their usual place, so I lent them our christmas hosting supplies, such as table cloths, crockery, and left over chrissy napkins and placemats from last year. I also chucked in our old wreath and a few decorations, since their stuff is in storage after their actual house got flooded in February, and is being totally renovated.

My sleeping patterns have been all over the place this week – so much so that I slept right through my last antenatal class on tuesday! I was so angry when I realized I’d missed it. I asked a lady who went to it, and she said it was really good, and that it covered topics such as post-natal depression, and how to take care of baby in the first month, etc.

Wednesday was a stressful day, I had a concert at one of my schools and it didn’t go well at all. The organisation was not really there from technical staff, and some of my kids didn’t even get to perform, or their performances were cut short abruptly by technical faults, etc. Despite the days’ business and the fact that I’d hardly eaten, the dinner that Hubby made wasn’t appealing to me at all, (but usually I would’ve liked it), and I hardly touched it. (It was steak, oven baked chips, gravy, and salad.) To try to relax after such a stressful day, I swam in the pool for about an hour before we went hunting for local christmas lights.

I had another MASSIVE sleep in on Thurs, where I went to bed around 1am Wednesday night, and didn’t get up till around 1pm on Thursday! (Well, besides the usual early morning wake up call from my bladder.)

It’s been really refreshing not to be working so much! I’m so glad that my 3 main schools are done for the year now – no more stress with concerts and such.

That being said though, I’ve had an emotional rollercoaster this week. There haven’t been many days where I haven’t cried over something small.

I have realised that I’m not really going to get much of a break, as there’s still loads of teaching and photography admin for us to do this month, plus my birthday and christmas, plus last minute shopping and organising for the baby, then having the baby, and then I’m meant to return to work part-time in late January! It was a scary realization that I’ll be full term by my birthday (in 1-2 weeks time!)

On Thursday we did a hospital tour, and we saw the preemie ward, and 3 areas for birthing. I suspect I’ll be in the high-risk area. There were really comfy looking chairs in most of the rooms, though the beds didn’t look too comfy. The low-risk room had a private balcony and a double bed! They said they don’t use stirrups and said that they did supply birthing stools and balls, etc.

Below: A picture (from someone else’s blog) of a birth suite in the hospital I’ll be birthing in – the Lyell McEwin. (I doubt I’ll get a double bed though, as I’ll be considered high risk due to my weight, and the double beds were in the low-risk areas.)

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We went late-night shopping at target in Elizabeth after the hospital tour, and I got 3 packs of large undies, 3 maternity nighties that I can breastfeed in, and 1 maternity bra that clips down for breastfeeding. I was going to get a few nursing tops and some more nursing bras, but there was barely anything that fit me. We also looked in Big W earlier this week to no avail.

I’ve had some tiny white flakes on my right nipple on and off over the past week or two now, and on thursday night I think I had the start of actual milk production. Before I went to bed my nipples had some white flakes and goo on them, and they smelt a bit rank. The right nipple had more than the left. When I woke I had a shower and haven’t noticed anything there since.

On Friday I hadn’t had much sleep, as we were up thursday night watching “Charlottes Web” and “Babe.” I had another antenatal appointment around 11am. The doctor was a little uncaring and hard to understand. She was inconsiderate with my sciatica and did not raise the bed, so it hurt when I got up after the baby-heart-check. (It was 140bpm, as usual. She said my blood pressure was actually slightly low. We really need to start keeping tabs on my blood pressure – I never remember. This time it was something over 70!?!?! Babys heart rate was 140. They estimated that the baby would be three and a half kilos at birth; (7.7 pounds.) I’ve lost half a kilo this week, and now weighed in at 163.5kg. They asked me to do a vaginal swab for something, which I did, and they’re wanting me to come back in 2 weeks, and then weekly from then on. I found out that a baby is typically born around 40 weeks, and is usually induced at 40 weeks and 10 days.

After this appointment and some light shopping, (I bought pancakes, pizza, iron supplement tablets, lens cleaner, and chocolate Nesquick), I fell asleep for about 5 hours, and then cleaned up the house in dribs and drabs.

This week I took some footage of the baby moving, so I’ll edit that and upload it sometime soon. I’m thinking of doing a maternity shoot over the next week.

I also researched feeding chairs an swaddles, and we went through the hospital bag again. I filmed a vlog about what’s in my hospital bags, which will hopefully be up sometime next week.

Here’s the money that my husband and I have raised lately 🙂

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1 WEEK UNTIL I’M CONSIDERED FULL TERM!