Friday, December 31, 2010

not in labor yet

It is 3:30 in the morning. I've been having that pregnancy induced insomnia for maybe a week now and finally gave up on trying to go back to sleep immediately. I've been up for close to two hours now. I'm going to knit a few rows on a hat I'm working on then try again to go back to sleep. Unlike with first baby, my girls will need me tomorrow.

This waiting game is not easy. I keep having all these indicators that baby is coming SOON but no real active labor has happened yet. Lots of contractions. Lots of mood swings. Insomnia. Wanting to retreat to that safe, private place to labor from. I get my hopes up, then everything fizzles out and I get disappointed and discouraged. It's a bit of a roller coaster. I know baby has to be born and I'm trying to release my fears that it will be in a way that I don't want - like being induced or having to have a c-section. I'm working on staying in the moment and allowing the process to be what it will be and trusting that my body will do exactly what it needs to do and that it will be, in retrospect, at the exact right time.

I guess this is nature's way of making you really WANT to be in labor. Come on baby! Your Daddy will still be home next week but has to go back to work the week after. It would be so nice to have him home for the first week of your life!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

39 weeks

We've made it past Christmas (which was overall good) and my focus has shifted from getting ready for Christmas and then surviving, I mean enjoying, the chaos of Christmas to thinking about when labor is going to start and when will the baby be born. I love Christmas, don't get my wrong, but there is a certain amount of stress that goes along with it - disappointed hopes, let down after all the excitement and build up, too much weird food, overstimulated kids.

Yesterday I had quite a few relatively strong contractions but they completely fizzled out into nothing. So frustrating! It was nice to have the distraction of Christmas so as to not obsess about when I will go into labor (is this contraction the beginning?) and when the baby will be born. Did I do the right amount of activity today? Did I eat right? Did I rest enough? You know, trying to control a situation that is completely out of your control. I've had a New Agey type (a man, too, who has an adopted son but none of his own) tell me that I can just manifest when the baby will be born. At the time, I just nodded and said sure while in my head I was thinking, "Ha! You give it a try!" Thinking about that more, as I wish I could have some control over when I go into labor, I come back to isn't it true that you can only manifest for yourself and not for anybody else? And if you believe in astrology and that the baby picks it's birth time, you can't manifest the baby's birth time to satisfy your need to know when the show is going to happen? I think there must be something to the baby choosing his birth time, reflecting my belief that there is more to the world than just the material. And the mother must wait. The mother's emotions play a role, too, it is a joint and collaborative effort, but there is only so much you can do before you drive yourself crazy wondering if maybe something you did was the wrong thing and that is why you haven't gone into labor yet.

Patience and tolerating discomfort with the best interests of your children at heart is one of the earliest lessons of motherhood. Waiting, wondering whether this next contraction will be the one that gets the ball rolling, trying your best to balance out your day to help create the best scenario for the birth of your baby while at the same time trying to be a good parent to your older children - that is my current challenge.

Waiting, wondering, waiting some more, and some more, and some more...

Friday, December 17, 2010

Officially full term

I am officially full term today, according to the day of my last period. I can't tell you how good it feels to be full term (well, besides the discomforts of being hugely pregnant). Of course, it's still that the baby will be born any time in the next four weeks. But that background anxiety is gone and won't return unless I go past my due date (January 7 according to the hospital) which then will bring up anxiety about being induced. But we're not going to think about that for now... I can tell my body is changing and preparing - more open, more relaxin. I feel like I've dilated some more and that my cervix is changing position. There's more pressure in my pelvis. Contractions are getting stronger, though definitely not active labor yet. I assumed that I would have five minute contractions at this point since I did with both of the girls. But they've been more of a comfortable fifteen to twenty minutes apart.

The nesting urge is going strong down to wanting to scrub all my floors and clean out all my closets. We'll see what I end up having the energy for.

I'm almost done sewing up some fleecy items for baby boy - some hats, sleepy sacks, kimono style sweaters. I have a little tiny sweater on the knitting needles.

I'm also really glad Christmas is coming so soon. The distraction from being pregnant - having something else to think about and focus on - is very welcome. We're getting our tree today. I'm done shopping but have a lot of wrapping to do. I alternate between feeling like I haven't done enough shopping and feeling like I've way over done it - trying to find that happy medium. I'm pretty sure everybody will be happy come Christmas morning.

I've told baby boy that being born on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day is not really an option. The week after would be perfect. We'll see if he listens...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

36 weeks

Yesterday, the date was circled on my calendar with the words "the magic day." I've been waiting since April to get to that day. For a long time, it had seemed impossibly far away but now it has come and gone. Now I just have a little background anxiety, not wanting to go into labor until I'm 37 week which won't be until the 17th according to the date my mid-wife has on record and so according to the hospital. Somebody told me that any baby born before that "magic day" at the hospital I'll be delivering at has to go to the NICU regardless of how they're doing. (I'm pretty sure that's true, but I haven't been told that officially by my mid-wife or anything. Maybe I should ask to be sure. Then if it's not true, I could let go of that piece of anxiety.) I'd really really really like to have a healthy baby that does not go to the NICU. So when I have a couple hours of five to ten minute contractions, that date looms in the back of my mind and I have a hard time relaxing and trusting my body to do the right thing. Baby boy is still transverse so chances of me going into active labor are pretty slim with no head engaged.

I've been up a lot at night and try to do my hypnobirthing techniques during that time. The words trust and receive and faith and allow are the ones that keep coming up as I work on releasing fear and anxiety. As much as I believe in hypnobirthing and that it is possible to create your own birth experience, there's a part of me that also believes that there are things outside of our control and that what we think will be perfect may not actually be what is perfect. If we always knew what was best for us, then we'd be omniscient and I'm not omniscient though I wish I were at times. So I'm working on setting the intention but not being attached to outcome.

Here's my intention. I would go into active labor in the evening after the girls are in bed which means we can leave before our care provider gets here (the boys will be home)and I don't have to worry about coordinating my departure with the arrival of somebody who can watch the girls. The roads are passable which makes it easy for all people involved to be able to get to where they need to be. I'm able to stay in my hypnobirthing space, everything goes smoothly, and before I know it, I'm holding a baby boy in my arms. I had a kind of vision of a bridge and a being of light bringing baby boy across the bridge and placing him in my arms. Then Eric can stay the night with me. The girls will wake up in the morning and have a new baby brother. Eric can go pick the girls and boys up and they can come visit me and the baby while I'm resting at the hospital.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

gemma and oona

The girls decided to have a pajama day today and wanted some pictures. Then I meant to post the other picture of them holding hands while watching a movie a couple weeks ago. I threw it in because it was just too cute.

my belly

at 35 weeks. plus pictures with a sweater my twin sister made for me. she calls it a twin hug for mama of 3+2. it will fit better, i think, after baby is born...