Giving birth can make you exhausted so it’s not surprising that women sigh with relief after it’s all over. Here are my top 5 favourite things after giving birth.
- The Baby. Obviously, this is number 1. Seeing the face of your little one and counting all the toes and fingers and giving kisses. Seeing my children’s faces for the first time was simply unforgettable.
- Showering. OMG! This is easily my second favourite. I cannot tell you how good it felt to finally have a shower. You feel so sticky and sweaty and to have that hot water wash it all away is just spectacular. After 32 hours labour and a C-section with the Rainbow, it was almost 3 days before I could shower. I was afraid that after my shower he wouldn’t be able to recognize me. “You’re not my mom. My mom smells like sweat, blood and local anaesthetic.”
- Eating. With epidurals and chances of caesarean, more often than not, the only thing you can eat while in labour is ice chips and we all know how filling they are. After my C-section, I made hubby to a food run. It had been 2 days of no food and I was HUNGRY! And let’s be honest, hospital food isn’t that great.
- Laying on your Back. I’m a back sleeper. I have my pillow under my neck and one under my knees and I have to say sleeping on my side was one of my least favourite things about being pregnant. Too bad now I barely sleep because I have an infant who has his days and nights mixed up.
- Sleeping in your own bed. I was so happy to finally get home and crash into my bed. After soaking my hospital beds with amniotic fluid, blood and sweat, I just wanted my nice clean sheets, with my nice fluffy pillows in a room that didn’t smell like a sterile hospital.
“The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray.” – Robert Burns
Turns out that this will be the Rainbow’s mantra from here on out. As of last Thursday, we had gone forward and booked a C-section for this upcoming week, but low and behold, the Rainbow had plans of his own. I don’t know if he thought me saying “It’s time to get this over with” were mere idle threats, but maybe after booking the c-section, he realized I meant business. Early on the weekend, I went into natural labour. Hubby and I found care for the Princess and made our way into the hospital. We were checked and monitored but as we were only in the early stages, we were sent home to ride out the contractions until they were 5 minutes apart. So we got back home and waddled until the pain was just to much for me. We tried the bathtub and eventually I just laid in bed and laboured until we hit the 5 minute mark. I originally wanted a VBAC and since I went into labour naturally the on-call doctor agreed to let me trial labour.
It was loooonnggg. After 32 hours and lots and lots of drugs, I finally made it to 10 cm and got to push. It was not easy. For some odd reason, this labour made me vomit every time I moved so having to make myself hunch over my belly only made this worse, not to mention apparently me and epidurals don’t mix since I still felt some. However, after 20 minutes, Rainbow’s heartbeat began to give out and the doctor informed us that he wouldn’t last if we continued. Up until that point, he had tolerated the labour well, and while I vomited, had my blood pressure drop, and had tachycardia, I had managed quite well too. But within 5 minutes, we were being wheeled into the OR. And to be honest, thank god. As I had mentioned in a previous post, Uterine Rupture can happen with VBAC’s and when the doctor cut me open, it turns out I was well on my way to one. After 32 hours of labour, my uterus had thinned out so much that the doctor merely touched it with his finger and it tore. Also, because Rainbow was so big, a bit of damage was done to my bladder causing a lot of blood to fill my insides. Needless to say, if I had continued on with natural labour, both him and I may not be here today. The C-section was longer than usual to repair all the damage, but both Rainbow and I are doing much better and are being very well taken care of.
Born only 4 minutes after Father’s Day, we welcomed our 8 lbs 8 oz little boy into this world. Hubby, Princess and myself couldn’t be happier. He is a wonderful eater, great sleeper and all around cute! Him and I have spent many hours cuddling and at the hospital where we delivered him, they have a service where they provide professional photos on the day of their birth. The shoots themselves and the discs are all provided the day of so there is no waiting. Hubby and I had no intention of getting professional photos done this early, but hey, who can beat same day service?
So it looks as though our Rainbow will be finally making his appearance soon. Originally we had intended to deliver him via VBAC however life doesn’t always go the way you plan. At 37 weeks, my doctor ordered an additional ultrasound as I was measuring 2 weeks ahead of schedule and he wanted to ensure that the baby was in the correct position and determine his weight. Well, boy oh boy, he is big!
At 37 weeks gestation, our Rainbow was estimated to weigh 9 lbs. already and was in the 90th percentile for babies of his gestational age. My doctor has been very supportive in our decision to attempt a VBAC, but after the last 2 check ups, things have changed. Turns out that our Rainbow is so big that he is unable to drop into my pelvis thus not engaging and triggering labour. Our doctor said that if we truly wanted to do a VBAC, he would let us go to 41 weeks, but he warned me that it would likely be a long, hard and complicated birth that may end up in a C-Section anyways. He also said that since our boy hadn’t dropped yet, it wasn’t exactly a good indication of things to come. So after much deliberation, we have booked a C-Section for next week.
I was hopeful that we would get to have a natural birth, but I also do not want any complications causing undue harm to myself or our baby boy. We have been through so much just to conceive him that putting myself and him in a situation that could cause complications, uterine rupture or him getting stuck and then having to make emergency decisions in the throe of things seems unnecessary and not in our best interests. I’m not overly ecstatic about the idea of a C-Section, but with all things considering, it’s the very best option. Thankfully Hubby will be taking 2 weeks off of work to stay home and help me with our Rainbow and Princess as well as letting me recover. Also, by mere coincidence, Rainbow will be born on his due date. Now how often does that happen?
Yesterday, I had thought that it was ‘time’. I have been feeling pretty craptacular lately and while laying in bed I felt a gush and then contractions. I called the hospital and they told me to come in. Within an hour I was in the oh so flattering gown and hooked up to the monitors. The doctor came in to inform me I was having mild contractions but that it was false labour. I stayed home today to get some rest and my contractions were on and off but never increasing in intensity. So I looked online and here are just a few signs that you are having false labour and not real labour.
- Contractions are unpredictable. They vary in length, intensity and come at irregular intervals.
- Position of Pain. With false labour, the pain is often located in your lower abdomen.
- Changes in Position. With false labour, the contractions may subside by changing position or activity.
- Lack of Other Symptoms. False labour lacks other symptoms such as bloody show or a broken water.
- Walking. Unlike real labour, walking has no effect on false labour.
For most people, they either look like one parent or the other. The Princess is her Daddy’s mini look-a-like. And after today’s 3-D ultrasound, our Rainbow is too. Not too long ago, I had a dream where the Rainbow was big, had dark brown hair and looked like me and for a while I thought that maybe it was a premonition of what was to come. But when I saw his handsome face come on the screen, I burst out laughing because it was startling how much he looked like his Dad and sister.
As a kid and even now I joke that I have reject genes. I’m short like my Dad, blind like my Mother, and my Dad’s wicked awful knees. And so after today, I made the joke of saying “I now know it’s true that I have reject genes. Even in utero, my kids are like “No Thanks.” LOL But it’s not all bad, my children are both beautiful.
“Eat up, you’re eating for two now.” We’ve all heard it, you have to eat more when you’re pregnant and weight gain is in the forefront of every woman’s mind. With the Princess, I gained a whopping 40 pounds, most of it to my face, feet and back side. I exploded. My friends giggled when we’d go out for dinner and I would shout at them “I can only waddle so fast,” while trying to beat the clock at the cross walk. With our Rainbow, I’ve only gained 6 pounds. Drastic difference from 40. I’ve been to the doctor numerous times and constantly asked if something was wrong. He assured me that our Baby Boy is big and strong and healthy and weight gain in pregnancy is all relative.
I’ve had lots of people ask me if I am eating enough, even eating at all and have had them constantly stuff food in front of me trying to get me to eat. I eat. I don’t stop myself from eating when I’m hungry, I eat what I’m supposed to. I eat healthier though. Instead of consuming bagels and cream cheese for breakfast, I eat a smoothie and a piece of multigrain toast with peanut butter. And for cravings, I’ve been downing ice water like it’s no one’s business. While with the Princess, I gave into every single craving I had, and there were many.
According to most doctors, the general rule is if you are underweight, you should gain somewhere between 28 to 40 lbs., 25-35 lbs. if you are average weight, and 15-20 lbs. if you are overweight. My doctor also said that women who are severely overweight shouldn’t gain any weight at all. So never mind all that stuff about eating twice as much when pregnant, instead eat twice as healthy.
It happens every night at 8:30. Boredom kicks in. And then comes the cravings. I have been really good at pushing them away and not giving in. But they are persistent. I’m craving ice cream. Delicious ice cream. I try and distract myself from thinking about it.
I do the dishes. Hmm, the bowls are clean, what better way to dirty them than with ice cream.
I fold and refold the Rainbow’s clothing. I organize and reorganize his drawers. Then I see the bib with an ice cream cone on it.
I could always go for a walk. And then again Baskin Robbins is only a 5 minute walk from our home.
I read a book. What would make reading this book better? Eating ice cream.
I watch TV show. And of course I watch the Food Network and what’s on? Ice cream.
Hubby and I have a conversation and without fail it always turns into a game of Rock Paper Scissors as to who is doing the ice cream run.
Even as we speak, I am writing a post and what is it about…ICE CREAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am now 32 weeks pregnant now and the birth planning has begun. From day one, I knew I wanted to attempt a VBAC. I had an emergency C-section with the Princess and I would be lying if I said it was an enjoyable experience. A botched epidural lead to an improper block which caused me to feel the doctors cut me open and ultimately being put under. It took hours to come out of the anaesthesia and I wasn’t able to hold my baby until she was over 5 hours old.
When I became pregnant with the Princess, I perhaps foolishly assumed that I would deliver naturally, no drugs and tough it out like many of the women in my family. My sister, who is a nurse, warned me not to become so rigid in my birth plans in case something were to happen and things didn’t turn out the way I planned. Those prophetic words still hang with me today. Needless to say, I was devastated by having a C-section. That isn’t to say that I’m not grateful for the Princess being born safely. It upset me that I had to stay in the hospital for 4 days, that I gave in and had an epidural, that I didn’t deliver my baby the way “nature intended.” I felt like a failure. And it’s not that anyone else made me feel that way, it was a pressure and expectation I put on myself. Somehow I had convinced myself that I was in control, that I would labour and deliver my baby.
Now that we near our due date, I am finding myself having those expectations again. And I am fully aware that my ability to deliver naturally is only 50/50. Not really great odds. Perhaps it is out of fear of another botched C-section (despite going to a different doctor and hospital) and the fact that this pregnancy has been a relative breeze compared to my pregnancy with the Princess that gives me the unrealistic hope that this time, this time I’ll do it. With a VBAC however, there is a chance of uterine rupture and often doctors will suggest an epidural in case a C-section is necessary. Also, if I have to be induced, like I was with the Princess, a C-section will be the only option. I can say with certainty I really really do not want a C-section. I’ve already spoken with my doctor and I have made it quite clear that if I do have to, I want to be out. He is aware of what happened last time and seems to be in agreement. At the same time, I have to weigh the possibility of uterine rupture (which is rare) and the consequences of that. My doctor seems confident that I am a good candidate for a VBAC and I may get my wish. I am trying my best not to get my hopes up and just take things as they come, but things are easier said than done.
Everyone says that you get less Zz’s while pregnant but the dreams you do have are much more vivid when pregnant. Many believe that the additional hormones are to blame for the heavier dream load and the constant tossing and turning makes you interrupt the REM cycle therefore remembering more dreams in sometimes more vivid details. I have been having my fair share of bizarre dreams and here are just a few.
- Very early on I had a dream that I gave birth early to a baby boy (psychic maybe?) and he was deformed but my Dad was cuddling him nonetheless. Apparently these dreams represent an anxiety about the babies health. It is likely since early on we were worried we would lose it, my subconscious was going into worry overdrive.
- This one was truly weird but I dreamt that Hubby and I were camping on a beach and the entire campsite was being attacked by Bigfoot. We tried to trap it with a dummy made out of carrot (???) but it ended up just throwing carrot sticks at us. Then somehow the Bigfoot pushed a woman into the water where she was circled by sharks. Dream decipherers believe that dreams of being attacked by animals, albeit fictitious animals, represents a fear of vulnerability. Or I ate too many Tums before bed.
- Lately I’ve been dreaming about loved ones that have passed on. My Nan, Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles, and last night dreamt of my family dog I had as a kid, have been a mainstay in my dreams. Some may not believe this, but I like to believe that people we love will visit us in our dreams to let us know things will be ok. However, dreams of relatives who have passed away may be the subconscious’ way of connecting the old and new generations. But it usually leaves me reaching for tissues when I wake up. Hormones and sad memories equal a whole box of Kleenex used and in the trash.
- I have also had very vivid dreams about certain people in popular culture. I had a dream I was on tour with the Jonas Brother’s, whose music I have never listened to and then the other night I had a very realistic dream about Snooki. Somehow the cast of Jersey Shore (a show I don’t watch) and I were visiting my sister who was building a house. I then turned to Snooki and said “It is a sad thing that future generations will look back and realize you would be considered an influential person during that time.” It’s even more sad when you wake up and realize that is true.
What crazy dreams did you have when you were expecting?