It begins, but we’re not there yet

So I want to keep track of all of this in order to keep my foggy mind from losing the details as time goes by. Thursday night, Jarell and I had just gone to bed when I started having regular Braxton-Hicks type contractions. By regular, I mean they were coming every 7-8 minutes pretty steadily. Fast forward an hour and I checked in with my midwife who told me to take a warm bath, drink some water, and see what happened. Done and done, I finally got out of the tub because I was having some discomfort. Went to bed and tried to sleep, but the contractions went to bed and tried to sleep but the contractions went from feeling like Braxton-Hicks, to being a little painful, with particular discomfort in my lower back. Now I know the baby is not posterior- she was ROT at the time so why I was having back labor is beyond me, but fortunately my honey is a saint and he curled up with his skin against mine for warmth and rubbed my back every time a contraction hit. After an hour of this we gave up and I called my friend and doula to give her a heads up that something was going on. She lives about half an hour away so she decided to head our way after some indecision since things were not following normal proceedings. She’d had some labor experience like this herself however so she wanted to come out just in case. When she got here, the contractions pretty much quit except when we were walking (figures, right?) so after a couple hours we decided she should go on to work and I would call her if things changed. I rested for awhile but eventually I was feeling too nauseous to sit still and Jarell and I took a drive around to just get some air. After our drive we took a walk around our yard which brought on contractions that were almost back to back- 5 steps, pause for contraction, 5 steps, pause- you get the picture. We headed inside after a lap around the yard because they were getting to be really intense- not painful- just intense. Inside, I laid down, and had a bunch more contractions that I had to breath and moan my way through and they were stacked together in groups of 2 and 3, really close together and very erratic. Jarell decided a call to my midwife was in order so he checked in with her. She was a good ways away, but since I could still talk through them she wasn’t too worried. She headed back, cancelled appointments and I went back to trying to rest after calling my doula who also headed our direction again.

The crazy wacko contractions kept up until, you guessed it, people started arriving, at which point they tapered off again. My doula and I killed some time by watching an old Cary Grant movie (I was a Male War Bride) til my midwife arrived. When she got there, she wanted to do a cervical check, saying things just weren’t progressing like normal labor and I was all for finding out what the heck was going on since even a first time mom like myself could tell something was screwy here. Check done, we discovered I was only *maybe* 1 cm dilated and 50% effaced with the baby fully engaged- no baby coming anytime soon at that point. Since this was the case, we sent my midwife and doula on home and I was told to eat, drink plenty of fluids, and get some rest. Jarell and I went out for a nice meal and then came back home where we both passed out on the couches in our living room. I had a few more strong contractions when I awakened periodically, but beyond that I was dead to the world for about 12 hours. Today we took a short road trip to see some museums and enjoy a little time together as a couple which was a wonderful way to spend our day. I’ve had more contractions throughout the day and they are definitely not the usual Braxton-Hicks style contractions, but nothing steady or measurable. I’m sure they’re slowly doing their work, but for now labor isn’t exactly imminent. Hopefully little one decides to join us soon- Jarell doesn’t want me going anywhere alone- which leaves me a bit stuck, but grateful he’s so concerned.

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39 almost 40 weeks

My post for 38 weeks is still sitting in the draft folder and there it shall probably remain. Why? Because I don’t like posting things once they’re no longer relevant and it no longer is since I only have 3 days til my due date. And because there is a good chance I’m already in early labor. There is of course the chance that it is more of my body just adjusting, but my midwife thinks it might be soon. I’m so excited, but don’t want to tell anyone I know because I’m fighting to avoid that watched pot feeling. So if you read this and you actually know me, please don’t say anything to anyone else and please for the love of all that is holy, don’t ask me if I’ve ‘had that baby yet’ or any other variation of that sentence. If you do, my response will be based on how I’m feeling at the moment, and I can’t promise it will be polite.

That disclaimer done, I’m really over the moon about the whole finally getting to meet our daughter thing and so is Jarell. That wonderful man is sticking close to home, but today the waiting proved too much so he’s working at the shop since we could use some income (no paternity leave for the self-employed) this week for the usual basics. I’ve been trying to get the nursery (formerly the craft room) cleaned out the rest of the way so we can move the furniture out of our second living room and get some clothing organization going. Its hard to feel motivated to get it done since she’ll be sleeping in our room, but between the two of us we finally made some headway the last couple of days.

To sum up the pregnancy at this point, here’s where things stand right now (so I can remember them for next time around)

Weight gain: as of my last weigh in, I had gained a total of 3 pounds for this pregnancy- I lost a lot early on when I was so sick and was slow to gain anything back.

Appetite: Finally back in full force- I have been eating everything in sight and that reminds me- I’m hungry again! I’m back on a spicy foods kick and we ate at a local Thai restaurant 4 times last week.

Food aversions: I still don’t like eggs much, although if they have enough “stuff” in them I’m okay. My favorite egg dish right now is an Italian omelet from a little diner in a nearby town- it tastes like pizza and is sooooo good!

Sleep: I’m still getting some. The little one tends to sleep when I do which is wonderful. I’m having more and more hip and pelvic pain tho and that makes for some sleepless hours toward the end of the night.

Clothes: Still wearing most of my pre-pregnancy stuff with the occasional pair of maternity jeans (I own 2 pairs) or skirt (own 1). Mostly I’m taking a hair tie and looping it through my button hole on my jeans, but that isn’t necessary for all of them. I’m definitely going to need new clothes post pregnancy, but its because I’m going to need smaller- so weird, right?

TMI: You can totally skip this part- go ahead if you like. Milk (or actually colostrum) is coming in now and I can hand express a bit which is helping to alleviate my probably unfounded fears that I won’t be able to breastfeed. I’m also at a point where the leukorrhea is picking up which, along with the stronger contractions I’ve been having and some other changes in my body, points to impending labor being close.

All in all, I think we’re as ready as we’ll ever be so the little one is welcome to make her debut any time she chooses. I’m not trying to rush things, but I’m thinking positive thoughts and trying to stay relaxed and calm. And now, I’m hungry, as I mentioned above, so I’m going to go find something to make for dinner.

New family additions of the four-legged variety

Liza Minelli (because honestly she looks like a drag queen and she also looks like Liza Minelli)

Honey

Doesn’t have a name yet

Casper the friendly goat.

On top of these four who came home with us yesterday, there are three more who haven’t adjusted enough for me to get pictures who came home with us today.

Whole lotta shakin’ goin’ on

Lots and lots happening in our household lately. I took some time and took pictures of baby things that either I or someone else has made for the little one

This lovely blanket was knitted by my cousin who has her own little one on the way just a few weeks after ours is due to arrive.

The jacket and hat were made by her mother

This blanket was made by my aunt- it is beautiful and so intricate

These next two were made by Jarell’s great-aunt. This little one will be her great great niece- how awesome is that?

I love the granny squares

Here’s the changing table all set up for the homebirth with blankets, towels, clothes, diapers, and a whole bunch more.

Close-up of a few of the newborn diapers I’ve made

One of the fleece skirty soakers complete with owl applique

Hand cut applique of the ninja turtle, Donatello because he was always my favorite

More diapers in one-size

And a few more soakers.

I’m excited to see all of this coming together at long last!