Thursday, October 29, 2009

Holding the Baby

It's amazing how natural it feels to hold your baby. Before I got pregnant I had only seen babies, rarely had I ever held them. I dealt mostly in three year olds at my preschool. Once I got pregnant, people kept handing their babies off to me "for practice". Not strangers, cousins who had recently had children.
Holding their babies felt strange and awkward. I was afraid I would drop them, and they seemed to be all limbs. Practice doesn't do a thing.
Holding my baby is like holding a part of me. She's warm and soft, and she curls into me naturally. It's amazing how different it is. It was instant after birth.
It didn't work that way with my husband. He was terrified of holding her, he was afraid she would break, or he would drop her. Now he's great at it, but that's one unique thing about being a mommy I guess. Your baby feels like you.

One thing I find funny is when people are visiting and you ask if they want to hold the baby (ok, I never ask because I hog the baby, if my husband asks) and they say something along the lines of "oh... I don't know, I've not held.. continue excuse here" and I say "Ok, if you're not comfortable holding the baby I'd actually prefer you didn't, so thank you for being upfront about it." They're expression is funny. I think the response they were looking for was for me to talk them into holding the baby.
It's like my friend who always tells her techie friends that she doesn't want an iphone because she doesn't want to be that connected. The next part of the "script" is for the iphone owner to tell her how great it is and show her how convenient it is and for her to keep protesting that she doesn't "need" email. When she talks to me about how she doesn't need an iphone, I agree with her that since she doesn't use all that stuff it would pretty much be pointless for her to have it, but as a business owner it worked great for me. Conversation dead.
I'm so mean

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


I'm a little surprised at the WIC program. Technically my husband and I qualify because the bills are mostly paid by his scholarships, grants, and loans. Nothing that technically counts as income. I make a little every month, and that is enough for us to purchase food and gas, and pay our little tiny bills. I tossed and turned about applying for WIC because it's not as though we are in desperate need... but my job is commission based, and could end at any moment... so maybe I should apply just in case.
Turned out not to be an issue. While I was in the hospital a WIC representative talked the whole thing over with me and signed me up. I qualified for the breast feeding exclusive part, and received my vouchers. I was a little excited. I had no intention of using the vouchers unless I needed them, but some months it was hard to get by, and having some extra food would take the pressure off.
Now, I have a lot of opinions about public assistance programs. I agree that they need to be there, I hate people who take advantage of them, and I hate people who treat others who need the programs like crap. My mom was on wic, welfare, food stamps, social security and every other type of government assistance, when my father died. She used the time to go back to school and get her nursing degree. Now she makes 90 grand a year travel nursing and has more than paid back the programs that helped her out. We feel no shame over this.
Still I have always felt there should be more giving back to help offset the costs. The wic office needs to be staffed yes? I would be more than willing to come in every month and work a few shifts to make up for the fact that they are giving me food. Same deal with unemployment, and medicare, and all of that. People on public assistance working public service jobs. Not full time, not even weekly, a shift a month per service. Who will watch the kids? We could open public daycares and staff those with qualified individuals. (Hey, some people who are down and out are certified to teach. I am, I just want work all those hours right now, I want to be home with my three week old. My cousin is, had full availability and it took her a year to find a teaching position)
Having actually looked at the WIC program, I kind of have to laugh at the people who complain about their taxes supporting these women. Wic shaved $25 off my weekly grocery bill. It's nothing to sneeze at, and I'm extremely grateful, but really? People are out there pitching full scale "I didn't choose to have a baby so why should I pay for yours" fits over what amounts to

1 loaf of bread
$10 fruits and veggies
6 gallons of milk
1 box of cereal
2 cans of beans
1 jar of peanut butter
1 box of eggs
1 pack of cheese
2 bottles of juice
1 can of tuna

I'm sure larger families get more but I'm a family of three. Seriously people, relax

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Baby in utero versus "real" baby

Here goes,
There's a big difference between the baby being inside my body and outside my body. Well duh, but seriously it's difficult to reconcile that this is the same baby. She "acts" different. Remember how I said babies have a personality in utero? Well I was wrong. I thought the baby who was in my tummy was hyper, and had an attitude. Loud noises equaled an angry baby, stuff like that.
Nope, my child is an angel. She sleeps and rarely moves in any way that could be considered hyper. Ive seriously got the most serene and peaceful baby that ever existed.
I love my child more than anything in the world. But it's strange, I feel like I spent nine months getting to know my baby, and when she was born she was completely different than inexpected.
So if I ever hear a naive mother talking about how they know their baby already while their pregnant, I'll smile, because at least in my experience, getting to know your baby doesn't happen until after you have the baby.
I love my baby so much, she's absolutely perfect

Monday, October 26, 2009

Birthdays and visitors oh my!

So Friday came and went. I got my hair done (will post pictures later) got a massage (heaven, exept my breasts hurt when I laid on them) manicure and pedicure, and got my eyebrows waxed. I got a gift card from my mom so I can go shopping for a new jacket, and I'm considering a new purse.
My mil and bil came to visit this weekend and while that made it possible for my husband and I to go to outback and then see the vampires assistent (cute, but doesn't hold a candle to the books) it also made things complex for a few reasons
1) they don't celebrait birthdays or holidays, given that it was my birthday and our house was decorated for Halloween it was a little ackward. We all handled it well by not talking about it at all
2) Bil brought his wheelchair instead of crutches. We told him our place wasn't handicap accessable, so we had a whole weekend of him not being able to fit through the doorways to the guest room or bathroom which equaled him hopping around which looked painful and dangerous. Also our furniture got scratched to pieces where he forced his way through, our carpets not wheel chair friendly, and he knocked over my husbands speakers. I don't mind at all, but you could tell he was embarressed and I felt bad for him.
He was great with Bella though and we are so happy he was able to come. I haven't seen him so happy in a while
3) mil doesn't like our apartment :( she kept mentioning things that are wrong with it. It's not bad! I mean it's cramped sure and yeah they need to do a lot of repairs after the flood the other week but those will be done this week. The knats will go away once the leaks are fixed. I get that it's not ideal but really when is it ever polite to comment on someones homes flaws?
4) company always throws routine

Other than that it was a fantastic visit and a great birthday. Dh got me a wedding band to replace the one I lost, and mil got to see her grandbaby and even cooked dinner! I got to be lazy and I got to hang out with my bil who is doing really well now! Overall a good weekend and a great birthday

Friday, October 23, 2009

Happy birthday me!

Happy birthday to me!

I'm off for a great spa day, and then when mil gets here it's dinner and a movie for me and my husband. :)

I have to confess I'm nervous about leaving Bella.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

So they say...

They say a newborn baby can be placed on its mother stomach, inch its way (all by itself) to the mothers left breast, latch on, and eat immediately after birth. Let me just say not my baby.
I love my baby, but she can barely find my nipple when it's shoved in her mouth, much less if she's not placed at the perfect angle right in front of it.
She's so cute when she's frustrated though. I'll get all set to breast feed, and then I'll put her where she needs to be, she'll latch on to the white part of my breast right above my nipple (a huge accomplishment as my nipples and dark part of my breast are HUGE now) I'll detach her, and try again, she'll let out this frustrated wail, at which point my breasts will squirt her in the face, and she'll get this eureka look on her face, and go all zombie baby on my boobs.
Seriously, it looks like horror movie zombie attacks, only super cute because its my darling. Incidentally nothing frightens me more than zombies, but this is funny not frightening.
Seriously though, why did my breasts get all huge, and dark, and my nipples get even bigger if it doesn't even help my baby find the nipple? I joke about it but I'm actually kind of worried about her vision...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Busy Busy

I know I need to be taking it easy, but unfortunately company is coming again tommorow, and I have a very big day ahead of me. Bella has an appointment at 10:00 am, then we have to go to Atlanta for the swine flue vaccine at noon, then we go home, then my husband goes to class, I need to clean the house and decorate for halloween, and then we need to do laundry.
Friday isn't looking any better, but in a much better way. It's my birthday :). We have a morning meeting that couldn't get rescheduled at 8:00 am, and then we are all going to go to a birthday breakfast. Go home and feed the baby, take a nap, go to lunch (haven't decided where yet) then off to the spa for a relaxing massage and hair appointment. Then its home to feed the baby. Then its time for a manicure and pedicure , feed the baby, then leave the baby with my mother in law, and go out to dinner and to a movie. My husband has a present for me, and my mom sent me a gift card to a clothing place, so I'm very excited.
*deep breath* it's not exactly taking it easy though.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pre pregnancy Weight

So today I decided to weigh myself. I look a lot better, not more huge tummy, and I'm not swollen up like a chipmunk anymore. Hooray, I lost 22 pounds! I'm back to my pre pregnancy weight!
I'm actually kind of disappointed. I was sort of hoping to be lower than my pre pregnancy weight :(. I know it's stupid, and frankly its a huge deal that I'm already back down to what I am. Also I'm breast feeding, so I know I'll lose more, but I had thought about weighing myself all day and just kept imagining the number lower and lower.
I want to lose about eighty pounds. Huge goal! I know, and all the books say not to even start trying to lose weight until about three months after the baby is born. It makes sense, I'm not getting that much sleep, and my body still needs calories to feed the baby. I'm losing weight rapidly (baby was five pounds, water was 2 pounds, uterus was 2 pounds, placenta was 2 pounds, and extra blood was 4 pounds, going with the lowest number for these I'm still ahead 7 pounds, which is about 2 pounds a week since starting to breast feed) but I feel so motivated right now. Maybe I should start making careful choices food wise and see how that goes. Nothing dangerous for the baby, but good for the baby. I won't cut back on the milk or juice or anything like that, just maybe less oreos.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Taking it easy

So apparently I've been doing to much. My body is sending very clear stop and rest signals, in the form of lots and lots of bleeding and cramping, and general feeling bad. When I called the health line about it they said it was my bodies way of telling me to stay off my feet, and do less. Makes sense I guess, two weeks ago I was pregnant, then gave birth. The next day I was up running around getting my house clean, shopping for baby stuff, and being a hospitable hostess. I felt fine though!
It's hard doing less. I don't actually do that much. I wake up, nurse the baby, take a shower, eat, nurse the baby, do work (all on the computer so it doesn't count as physical activity) feed the baby, take a nap, eat, feed the baby, clean the house, eat dinner, and take cat naps the rest of the night.
So cleaning the house has to go, since work can't, and feeding the baby can't. Instead of cleaning I now nap. It's hard not cleaning though, because my husband tries, but just doesn't get it done like I would. He's fine with dishes sitting in the sink instead of in the dishwasher (I wouldn't care that much except in an apartment that equals bugs) or not taking out the trash as soon as the bag gets full so we aren't pushing trash down in an effort to close the lid, or doing laundry before we actually run out of clothes.
What I need to let go of is that he does do everything though. He makes me dinner and lunch if he's home, and eventually when no more dishes fit in the sink he'll empty the dishwasher and fill it back up, he does the laundry every week, and he does take out the trash eventually. I need to relax, and get over it. I should be better soon, rushing my recovery won't do anyone any favors.

Friday, October 16, 2009

I love facebook

I love my family. Even though they haven't seen my baby yet (which is completely fine with me, I love them, I want them to meet my daughter, but company is so disruptive to my newborns schedule) they are keeping up with her every move on facebook. Yes I am one of those annoying moms who post photographs daily of their children. Mwahhah! I refuse to feel bad about it considering how many friends I have that post daily pictures of themselves either modeling or drinking with their friends every day. Nothing wrong with it, just don't complain about my million pictures if you don't want me to complain about yours.
Actually no one has complained, (but I'm ready if they ever do!) everyone comments about how cute my little angel is, and then they send me presents. :) Every item I've mentioned on facebook I've received in the mail within a few business days. Wipe warmer, bottle warmer, clothes in newborn sizes, (we had a few newborn clothes, but mostly we got 3 and six month outfits because we weren't sure what size she would be when she was born, size wise she's preemie, newborn outfits are huge on her, but I feel like actually buying preemie clothes would be a waste since she's already back to her birthweight, and next week will likely be newborn size) a swaddler, and hopefully *fingers crossed* a sling here soon.
I'm not posting in hopes of getting items, I'm asking if anyone knows of a good brand to get, and then bam, it shows up in the mail. Love it.
It's making my husband worried though, his family is throwing me a shower whenever I go visit them in Alabama, (they couldn't come to my shower, and felt bad, even though I completely understand not driving four hours to attend a shower and was not offended at all, they are insisting I drive my newborn child down there to visit them so they can throw me a shower. On the one hand that's super sweet, on the other hand umm... four hours is awhile for me as well. But we reached a good compromise, I'm going to go when I'm ready, and when Bella is ready. We don't know when that's going to be, but most likely in late November or early December)
anyway they aren't rolling in money (who is?) and most of these items I keep mentioning on face book are low ticket items, given that I post with intent to buy, and I don't have a lot of money. He's concerned that all the affordable gifts are being bought, and while he's grateful they are being bought he's worried.
Honestly we can do without presents at all. The baby got everything it needed at my first shower, now we're just getting novelty items, like diaper genies (courtesy of my husbands cousin) or wipe warmers, bottle warmers, and more clothes. I'm running out of items to even think of buying. Hopefully I'll come up with a few more by Christmas, so that I can buy my baby an awesome first Christmas gift.
My brother is visiting tommorow, and then next week my mother-in-law is visiting for a week, so lot's of company is coming through. But after that it is just me, my husband, and the baby until Thanksgiving :)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Swine Flue

So my husband comes home today talking about how people in his pharmacy class are out with swine flue, and he was nervous because so many people were coughing today. That's great. He took a shower, and is nervous about being around the baby, but it's not like it's avoidable. We're both getting the vaccine next week, so that's good, but I'm so nervous it's going to be too late. What happens to a newborn with swine flue?
Furthermore why were people who were coughing going to school? Because of pressure. Students are told to stay home when sick, but then told if they miss more than two days they'll fail, and make ups are impossible. It's not just pharmacy school either, when I went to high school we had a kid show up with TB because his AP Lit teacher told him if he missed any more days she'd fail him! So then the whole school had to be tested.
Not a year later we had a kid come to school with pneumonia because he absolutely couldn't miss a test, he collapsed after the exam and had to be hospitalized. His parents thought he was home, but he drove himself to school while they were at work.
It's not just schools, people go to school deathly ill because they don't want to be fired. It really bothers me to see a waitress, or teacher sniffling, sure it may be allergies, but more likely than not they can't afford to be sick.
And people wonder why this stuff spreads so fast. Yet another argument for homeschooling Bella, not that I need more reasons.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Time Management

It's sort of difficult to plan your day in two hour increments. Bella has her times when she's awake for an hour or so, generally between her 4:00 am, and 6:00 am feeding, and then she has her typical two hour naps, like from 6:00 am to 8:00, and from 8:00- 10:00, and then she has her random long stretches, like from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. And it's hard to figure out what to do with my time.
When she's awake I want to spend time with her. I look at her, play with her, dangle toys in front of her face, dress her in cute outfits, that sort of thing. Mostly though we just stare at each other. She doesn't like to be put down while she's awake, and since it only lasts longer than ten minutes while she's not feeding twice a day, I'm loath to put her down.
I try to nap during her two four hour naps during the day, but then that leaves me doing things like cleaning, and work, and blogging at night. I can clean at night without a problem, but the computer is in the bedroom so working or blogging while my husband is trying to sleep is out of the question. I'm seriously considering moving the computer to the babies room, since I spend most of the night in there with her, but how ridiculous would that look?
It's already odd that our baby has a tv, cd player, dvd, and ipod touch, but we had those in our guest bedroom earlier, moving them out just because we had a baby wouldn't make a lot of sense.
Plus I've been told not to get attached to any one schedule, because she's going to change it soon. So what to do?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Breast Feeding Basics

I think I may finally be getting the hang of this breast feeding thing! I've been doing it for one week and one day, and Bella and I are settling into a routine, and my nipples are toughening up. I haven't really had to deal with engorgement. Sure my breasts get sore and full feeling when Bella sleeps through a feeding, but nothing like the books described. I'm either a super lucky woman, or those books exaggerate to the nth. degree. Most likely its a combination of me being lucky, and me being young, and not having to work.
I about quit two nights ago when Bella just kept feeding until she was due for her next feeding, and she was still hungry! I was out of milk, and thank goodness I had pumped some earlier for my husband to take her away from me and feed her. She of course settled right down.
Since then I haven't had time to pump, I've been trying to get back into the swing of things. My house is clean, my work is done, I eat and sleep on a regular basis, and the baby eats and sleeps on a regular basis, but that doesn't leave me a spare second to pump milk for the baby.
That upsets my husband, I can tell. He loves giving her one feeding a day, heck he'd do all the feedings if I'd let him. I'm nervous though because I wanted to have a reserve in the fridge and so far that's not happening.
The biggest difference in breast feeding was getting the position right. I thought I was doing exactly what the lactation nurse told me, but I was reading a baby book the other night and it pointed out the baby needs to be tummy to tummy with you. *head bang* well there you go. I was cradling the baby not putting it tummy to tummy. Wow the difference that makes!
Hopefully I'll be as enthusiastic about this tommorow as I have been yesterday and today!

Monday, October 12, 2009

I don't like company

Ok, maybe I'm the most possessive new mommy ever, but I really just want to be home spending time with my baby with my husband. Actually considering that I didn't even want guests at our wedding, I'd say this is most likely just a personality trait. Its not that I don't like people, I love people. I consider myself fairly social. It's just that I'd rather not worry about people when I'm cherishing a special event.
That said, my husbands cousin came to visit this weekend. She brought a diaper genie, and promised to help with house work and cooking. Thing is I don't need help. The house was clean, the cooking pre-done, so all she actually did was hold my baby, and make me feel rude when I napped or went back to the room to feed. She's super nice, and she was trying to be helpful, so it wasn't her fault, its just that I would have rather waited a few weeks before having company.
My husband felt the same way once she was here and felt bad about it, so instead of studying he spent to the entire time in the living room with her being social. Which again meant I was nursing without him talking to me and playing with the baby with me.
She's left now, but his mother is planning on visiting for a week sometime soon. A week! I love my mil, but I just want to be with the baby and be alone, but I can't deny her the opportunity to see her grandchild either. My brother is visiting next weekend, but only for a few hours, so I'm not very concerned about that. But in the meantime I feel like a selfish ogre. No company please, just me and my little family.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Life with baby

Being home with the baby is so strange. When I was in the hospital, I couldn't wait to get home, even though all the books told me to take my time and stay as long as I could, because I would be longing for those catered meals soon. I knew that, but I also know my insurance policy makes me pay 20% of the bill, and I'd rather have a lower one, and I also know that my food is better, and that I like being home. I knew my husband would take care of me once he got to feeling better.
I'm still a little annoyed at the husband for being sick when we got home, even though he couldn't help it. It helps that he's as embarrassed as I am annoyed. I just gave birth and am walking around cleaning the house, and he's knocked out by a tummy ache? Ah well, at least he acknowledges that's stupid.
Anyway, being home with the baby is strange. It makes her existence more real to me, because she's in my space, not this unfamiliar place where strangers will come and whisk her away in the middle of the night to do lab work. Yesterday and today I pretty much just sat around staring at the baby, and it was great. I feel no need to do anything else.
On the one hand I know I should be cleaning, and cooking, and working, but on the other I should take a break, I mean if not now when? I made a point to get ahead on work so I could take time off once I had the baby, so why don't I take advantage of that? Instead I'm about to get off the computer, clean the house top to bottom because my husbands cousin is coming to visit, and then get to work. Something is wrong with me, because I just can't stop.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The ride home

Tuesday we were allowed to leave the hospital after the pediatrician looked at the baby, the doctor looked at me, and the photographer came by to take pictures of the baby. Our friends from Atlanta came to visit while we were waiting for the photographer, and then my darling little girl posed for her first modeling gig. She looked fantastic, and we had a good time.
After that came the scary part, checking out of the hospital. We packed everything up, I got ready to go home, my husband loaded up the car, and went by the cashiers office to settle up. The nurse came by with final instructions and a whole bunch of hospital papers and adorable souvenirs, and then it was time for them to wheel me out to the car, and check the babies car seat.
I think my husband drove twenty-miles under the speed limit the whole hour and a half home. It was nerve wracking. I think I died a little inside every time a car merged, but eventually we made it. We took our little girl into her home and introduced her to her nursery. My husband brought everything in from the car, and I settled in on the couch with the baby prepared for some pampering.
Except all the stress and lack of sleep and fast food caught up with my husband now that he could finally relax, and he spent the rest of the night sick to his stomach, and sleepy.
Ah well, welcome home

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

After Birth

I was given time with the baby right after birth to bond and try to feed. She did a good job with latching and for awhile my husband and I just stared at her. Then it was off to the after delivery room, and the baby was taken to the nursery to be seen by her pediatrician.
I fell asleep promptly, and when I awoke I had a wonderful daughter laying in a bassinet by my bed. We had fun counting all her fingers and toes and talking to her, and I took the time to take stock of the damage done to my body.
My arms, legs, and back were very sore. This puzzled me for some reason (pregnancy stupidity?) and my husband pointed out I'd been exercising those muscles for about two hours straight pushing. Mystery solved, I moved on to my breasts, which didn't feel any different yet, but leaked fluid just about anytime I moved. Now for the scary part... down there. I opted not to look and see the damage, but considering that every time I went to the restroom there was enough blood to provide for three over the top slaughter films, I imagined it was pretty bad.
I'd read in the books that the first time you poop after delivery is a majorly frightening event. Thankfully I had to potty pretty soon after delivery while I was still pretty much out of it. I suffered a moments apprehension but otherwise it was all very uneventful and not painful at all.
Body accounted for, I took a shower, brushed my teeth, and fixed my hair enough to become presentable, and then spent the rest of the day lying in bed with my baby, making small talk with my in-laws.
I know I'm a terrible person, I love my mil, and my little bil, but I really just wanted it to be me and my husband for awhile. My little bil was bored and sleepy and kept complaining about it. (My heart goes out to you kid, really, whine about being tired and having nothing to do one more time, we can see how far I can throw an iv needle) my mil of course wanted to hold the baby and talk. All I wanted to do was hold the baby and stare at it. She was really considerate though, always asked before holding the baby, so she mostly got her during my naps.
Feedings were a minor issue here because they would leave the room, and my husband would feel obligated to go with them and continue small talk in the cafeteria. I wanted him with me. It wasn't an issue for long though, they left that night, after giving us our baby gift. A cute bassinet for home.
The whole staff was nice, but getting your bp checked every hour, and having doctors and nurses come by to either take the baby or check on you gets tedious fast. It's like there is a schedule, and I don't know it, so it frustrates me even more. I could plan to say eat when the baby was gone as opposed to eating while holding the baby because I didn't want to let her go.
I was visited by a lactation consultant from the hospital and from a kaiser consultant, so that was very handy. Bella had done a little damage to my right nipple with incorrect latching, but we were now able to fix the problem and nursing was no longer a painful event.
I think at this point I was still in shock that I had a baby, when she was in the room she was all I could look at, when she was gone, it was like she hadn't existed yet? Not in a bad way, and with no negative feelings, but it felt like a dream, not reality. I was still waiting on reality to kick in.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Labor and Delivery

We got ready as fast as we could, it felt very surreal. The bags were already in the car. We just had to grab our phone chargers, deoderant, and tooth brushes and we were good to go. My husband took a quick shower and I debated the wisdom of changing out of my pajamas with leaking water, while calling the doctor.
In the car I sat on a towel in my comfy pajamas as we drove the hour and a half to the hospital. We talked for the first half the trip between calling family
members about how excited we were, and how very nervous we were about becoming parents.
I wasn't in pain. The contractions were growing less comfortable but it wasn't the screaming agony I was familiar with via the television.
Everyone I spoke to advised me to grab food and eat before I got to the hospital because they wouldn't give me anything once I arrived. We debated stopping for food but I really wasn't hungry, we had eaten a very late breakfast and i wasn't keen on waiting any longer to get to the hospital.
My husband kept bragging about how well I was handling the labor and I kept reminding him it wasn't to the bad part yet and he kept telling me it didn't matter he was still so proud.
We got to the hospital, filled out paper work, and checked into my room. I should note that unlike in the completely empty, zombie movie esque ER at 5:00 am, it took 45 minutes to get me in a room, whereas at this very busy metropolitan hospital in the middle of the day it took all of five minutes. Not that I'm bitter or anything.
My midwife and nurse came to introduce themselves, I can't remember the midwives name to save my life but my nurse was named Amy, and they were both amazing. They checked me and said I was at one centimeter and they could touch the babies head. The fact that they could touch the babies head completely blew my mind. It was 1:30, my midwife told me she was getting off at 7:00, so she was just going to watch and see how things progressed since I most likely wouldn't be having a baby on her watch.
They hooked me to a heartrate machine for the baby and a contraction monitor for me and checked in every so often.
For awhile it was really uneventful, we called family members, watched television, and talked. It's so weird, all this hurry to get to the hospital and once we were there it was kind of boring. At 4:00 my contractions started picking up in intensity and they gave me some pain relievers and a hot pad because i was experiencing back labor.
I got a new set of nurses (Lilly) and a new midwife whose name I can't recall at 7:00, and they saw I had made pretty much no progress even though I was in pain. It wasn't terrible pain though, still much better than I had expected.
They had to give me pennicilinn because I was group strep b positive and amniotic fluid to help boost the babies heart rate because hers kept dipping.
Finally they decided to give me cervitex or something to soften the cervex, that would take 12 hours and then they would put me on pitocin, and give me an epidural. They did the cervix thing,
Then gave me a pain reliever cocktail, and ambien to help me sleep.
Since it was getting late they told me I could eat dinner, then rest until morning. My husband got me mcdonalds, of which I ate two bites before deciding I was to sleepy and uncomfortable to eat and went to sleep.
I lost complete track of time after the ambien, I know each contraction woke me and felt like there was no pain killers working at all. I asked the nurse (new one, way too out of it to remember her name) if that was normal since whatever they has given me was supposed to be stronger than the first stuff they'd given me, and she said my doctor would be in soon to check me out.
When the doctor arrived I was in agony feeling a very strong urge to push, surprise surprise i was fully dialated and baby was ready to come out!
I don't actually remember getting the epidural. I think the ambien had me too drowsy to pay attention. I know I got it though, because for awhile the pain stopped. I could feel the need to push, and that was a very uncomfortable pressure, but it wasn't pain. Don't believe them when they say you don't feel anything with an epidural though, that urge to push is weird. It's not pain, but its unbelievably uncomfortable, and agonizing in its own way. It's not like television labor though, I didn't scream or cry, I just kind of wanted it to be over.
Pushing takes getting used to, you have to wrap your arms behind your knees and kind of bend while bearing down like you're going to the bathroom. My husband and a nice nurse held my legs for me and i pushed for 2 hours. It was hard, I could feel her head the entire time and aparently she was right there for about two hours but kept going in and out. They were concerned because her heart rate kept slowing and speeding up so they cut me a little. I don't remember it but my husband said I cried out when they did. I was just about ready to give up. I was so tired and it was so hard, I think I said something to that effect before trying just one last time and out came her head.
It's funny I remember my husbands reaction, he was so excited he kept saying oh my god! In a really excited voice as the rest of her body slid out. That's what it feels like, after the head it just kind of slides out.
There was a whole team of baby nurses on the other side of the room who whisked her away and gave her the eye droppers and everything she needed before handing her back to me.
I looked at her, my beautiful baby girl, and was just in awe. Everyone says they have the most beautiful baby ever, but I really do. She has a full head of hair, beautiful clear skin, and the most alert variable colored eyes (they shift colors right now) I've ever seen.
At 5:03 am Bella was born weighing 5 pounds 14 ounces and 19.5 inches long. Welcome to the world baby girl.

Sunday, October 4, 2009


It all started on Saturday night when my husband and I couldn't sleep. It had been a great day. One of those one in a million lazy days. He had been studying all day for his test and had finally baby proofed the closet, and I hadn't really done anything at all. The house was clean, my homework was done, and all was right with the world.
Except we couldn't sleep, but we were in a great mood, we talked all night about silly and random things. We tried to remember eighties theme songs and television commercials. We sang the theme to Ducktales, Growing Pains, Full House, and Sanford and Son, and we laughed and laughed.
Finally we drifted off around 2:30 am.
I woke up around 4:00 in complete agony. I had a severe pain on the lower left side of my back that radiated up the entire left side of my back. I felt like I was being stabbed and set on fire at the same time. It was terrifying and excruciating. Weeping in agony I limped to the rest room in hopes that maybe going to the bathroom would fix things.
It didn't make it worse but it didn't help either. I crawled back to the bed holding back tears. I knew I should call kaiser. Instead I laid down hoping that would help. When it didn't I started to cry and woke up my husband to let him know something was terribly wrong and we needed to go now.
We got ready. My baby is the only reason I had the strength to get dressed and walk to the car. I kept trying to feel the baby move but either she was being still or the pain was to intense to feel through.
We chose the closest hospital instead of our delivery center, I just couldn't make it very far. We arrived at the hospital and spent 45 minutes filling out paperwork before they even looked at me medically. The receptionist was super sweet, but all I wanted was my baby hooked up to a moniter. Sensing my worry she told me not to worry it was most likely labor or a bladder infection.
I tried explaining that it wasn't a contraction an peeing didn't hurt so it was unlikely anything to do with my bladder or kidneys, will you please please check on the baby! At 5:00 am I finally heard that blessed little heart beat. They checked my cervix, closed up tight, noted I was experiencing contractions but wasn't feeling them because of the back pain, and ruled out a ui infection, a kidney stone, and labor.
I was feeling better by now. The pain was coming and going intermittently as opposed to being constant like it had been, and the pain level was down from a 10 to a 3. They decided the baby must have laid on a nerve or the kidney may have been jabbed by my uterus expanding and flattened some sort of tube making fluid back up.
They advised me to tell my doctor soon (I had an appointment booked for Monday morning) and my husband and I got discharge at 10:30.
We ate breakfast, went home and curled up in bed talking about how relieved we were everything was ok. I decided I was going to have the baby Monday. I lived too far from the hospital to play this game. Last night had terrified me, and I wasn't letting that happen again. We were lucky the baby was, because waiting forty-five minutes in the ER was just insane. What if my placent ok a had detached or something or the baby was in danger and needed to be taken out right then! No, I was getting induced, so help them if they said no. I drifted off at 11:00 still thinking of ways to talk my doctor into an induction.
I slept fitfully, I was feeling mild contractions now, you know those Braxton hix things? And it was putting a lot of pressure on my pelvis. That coupled with the backpain promised a long day of poor sleep. 11:30 I was semi conscious debating on whether or not I really needed to get up and pee when I felt a little pee escape.
The matter decided I hopped up ready to go to the bathroom and noticed water trickling down my leg. It wasn't acting like pee! It's hard to describe, it wasn't exactly coming from the right place, and I couldn't control the flow.
"Oh no way!" I exclaimed, startled, excited, and annoyed at once.
My poor husband jerked awake and asked me what was wrong.
"My water just broke!"

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Today I had many occasions to think long and hard about disciplining my future daughter. My day began when I awoke to hear a child screaming and crying at my door step. My husband and I walked to the door and looked out the peephole to see a two year old banging on the door to his apartment crying "mommy please let me in."
I was stunned. This is an apartment complex. Locking your child out of your home in your locked backyard where you can watch them through the window is one thing, and even that's questionable, beyond questionable as young as two, it's plain wrong. But to lock your child out of your apartment? There are three other people who live on this floor, any one of them could snatch that kid in a heart beat. Heck, I was less than two feet away standing at my door! Also, stairwell! Right there. Kid could have fallen down it and broken his neck.
About the time I was seriously trying to figure out what to do (do I mind my own business, do I call the police, do I step outside with the kid until his parents let him in, do I knock on their door?) the kids dad stepped out of the house and asked if his son was ready to behave, swatted him on the bottom, and pushed him inside.
I couldn't help but think I didn't really have any viable options. I couldn't talk to the parents, they speak spanish (I'm assuming he asked if the kid was ready to behave by tone, and response) I don't know them and couldn't even begin to open a dialogue, and what to say? I feel uncomfortable with your child screaming outside my door?
I couldn't wait outside with the kid, that could be misconstrued as something else, and I don't want to teach this kid that when mom and dad are mean run to strangers. I mean I wouldn't do anything to him, but someone else could.
And I couldn't call the police. For all I knew they were watching through their peephole the entire time, it seemed an extreme and stupid punishment to me, but criminal? On the other hand I couldn't walk away and mind my own business because my god, what if something had happened to that kid?
I think I may mention it to the landlord on Monday, not in a whistle blowing child abuse way, because like I said, for all I know he was watching the entire time, and it was fine, but just to give them a heads up over what is surely a liability for the management company. Unattended children in the common areas, also loud unattended children in the common areas. I can't hear the other apartments at all, but this kid woke me up because he was right outside my door. That's not really considerate of the neighbors either. Then if they see it as child endangerment, balls in their court, not mine. I don't know, I feel very conflicted about this.

One thing I don't feel conflicted about is these recent news stories about strangers spanking, or slapping other peoples children. Alright, we've all been there, small child is screaming bloody murder and pitching a fit in the aisles while the mom calmly shops for that perfect apple with no bruises, taking her sweet time. We've maybe all even thought "I'd like to slap that woman," or "that child needs a spanking." But no one actually does it! It's assault! You can't just choose to discipline someone else's kid, that is completely overstepping.

What's more, these people were in stores, grocery stores, and goodwill. What the heck do you expect? I hate going to walmart, who can blame the kid for crying about being there. In the rare instance I've actually grown annoyed enough at children's behavior in public, its been when they were in places they shouldn't be. (Midnight screenings of Terminator: Judgement Day for example, cool movie, not so awesome for the three year old girl who keeps screaming in terror and coughing and sneezing, and whining that she wants to go home. Only in that case I wanted to beat the parent brainless, and rescue the poor child) Or really fancy restaurants running around without a parent, taking food off my plate. Yes, I considered slapping the child's hand, but I didn't! I got my waiters attention, and got a new plate, and walked the child back to its mother with a to go box of the plate it touched and a bill. (What? The kid had been crawling on the floor and chewing on its hand, I don't want to eat that. Something I'm sure I'll get over as a mom, but I really shouldn't have to get over as a random stranger. And no, the mom didn't pay me for the meal, and I didn't demand that she did, restaurant didn't charge me any extra for replacing the food, but I got my message across with no rude discussions, and a gracious smile, as opposed to slapping the child or screaming at the mom.)

Anyway, my point is, you can't slap, spank, or really even touch someone else's kid. It's not appropriate. These people deserve jail time. I don't know what I'm going to do when my child has a melt down in public. I can tell you now that I won't be taking my child to any movies rated more than PG for the first twelve years of her life, and I'll save everything above applebees price range for my date night with my husband (kids don't appreciate it anyway) but yeah, I may be at the mall or grocery store with my kid, and if she pitches a full out fit, I will handle it whichever way works best. I don't know yet if that's spanking, yelling, leaving, or ignoring, I think it varies with every child. But God help me if you so much as lay a finger on my daughter I will end your miserable existence.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Day of Stress

Tuesday, my husband and I stayed overnight with friends in Atlanta, in preperation for a very busy day of errands. I'd been nervous about Wednesday for awhile because I've had so much trouble sleeping, I wasn't sure how I'd be able to cope a full day without cat naps. I preperation I woke early on Tuesday morning, after a very fitfull night of attempted sleep, and refused to nap all day, so I'd be sleepy Tuesday night.

I had a busy day on Tuesday anyway, no time to nap. I had to clean the house, pack our bags, take the car to get the tires changed, aligned, rotated, and balanced, and drive with my husband to Atlanta.

Visiting my friends was great! They are also pregnant, but they aren't due until February. They just found out their baby is a girl, and are in the midst of decorating their nursery in a Dr. Seuss theme. I brought all my pregnancy books (I've finished them all, and really don't want to re-read the labor parts) and now have extra space on my bookshelf. We talked about being pregnant, and our plans for our babies, and just got caught up in general.

Then it was bedtime. I was pleasently surprised to find that I was actually tired. So I promptly dropped off to sleep while my husband watched youtube on his phone in our very nice guest room. Between 10:00 and 12:30 my husband woke me up every two minutes to let me know I was snoring... loudly. I switched positions, moved the pillows, blew my nose, and everything I could think of to stop, but once I dropped back to sleep, the snoring would start again without fail. I asked him to stop waking me up, since he was awake watching tv anyway, and it wasn't helping, so he switched to bed kicks every time I snored to loudly. Around 11:00 I not so nicely asked him to stop kicking the bed, and stop waking me up. I couldn't help that I was snoring, when he gains 20 pounds in his chest and abdomin, deals with facial, hand and feet swelling, can only sleep on his side, and suffers from prenatal rhinititis, he'll understand.

He tried to sleep, until about 12:30, when he woke me again and asked me to please stop snoring, he couldn't sleep. Then I snapped. I have been pregnant with his child for nine months, I haven't slept through the night in three months, I cannot help that I am snoring, but he can deal with one sleepless night if I can deal with it every night. He pointed out that he doesn't sleep much either because he has class early every morning and studies until midnight every night. I pointed out he was in control of that, and that was why every other night I went to the living room and read instead of tossing and turning and selfishly keeping him up at night when I couldn't sleep. Because he did have somewhere to be. Tommorow would be busy for both of us, so it stood to reason that it was equally important for us to sleep, so stop waking me up. He kept whining that it wasn't fair, I was keeping him up, ect. I finally stormed off to the bathroom and read in there for awhile, since I couldn't really go anywhere else in the house. I had to get away from him, I was to angry.

When I went back to bed, he was already asleep. I tried to sleep, but was way to wired and angry to do it, so I bought Frostbitten, by Kelley Armstrong, and resolved to read that until I was sleepy. Dwelling on the situation would only make me angrier and would make it harder to sleep. So I read, the book was great, I finished at about 5:00 am, and still wasn't feeling sleepy when I finished. So I lay there, listening to my husband snore (yep) and getting annoyed that we had to wake up at 7:00. At 6:30 I finally felt sleepy, and burst into tears at the unfairness of that.

My crying woke him up, and he pretty much felt like scum. His pregnant wife had stayed up all night because of his selfishness, and was now crying because she was so tired, but had to wake up in half an hour. He felt bad enough to take me out to breakfast, and then we drove to court.

Court went well, it was over very quickly, then we went to the doctors office, where they again teased me with talk of induction, but said I was doing well enough to send home today. *Sigh* Though they did comment that I looked pale and sleepy, and should try to get more rest. I basked in the look on my husbands face, and we went out to lunch, and then went to pick up some pottery from a fellow shop owner and friend. We talked to her for awhile, just about business, and employees, and mutual people we knew.

Then it was time to go home. We drove home, and upon arrival I went straight to bed, and slept from 3:00 to 10:00 am. Today I am a happy camper, because I'm very well rested, and my husband still feels like a jerk, so is still trying to make everything up to me. All is well with the world.
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