Sunday, July 30, 2006

My brain is mush. Can't think of title.

Wow, I really can’t believe it’s been almost two weeks since I last posted. Where does the time go?? Everything here is chugging along, status quo. Phred seems to be getting bigger by the day, along with my belly! Still breech though. I’ve been doing some of the position exercises, just started seeing a chiro certified in the Webster technique, and have an acupuncture appointment next week. I’ll also have another u/s at my 36 week appointment to check exactly how Phred is positioned, for a possible ECV the following week, if nothing else has worked in the meantime.

The other things I’ve been occupying my time with include making myself a couple of skirts, since I really can’t stand any of my pants any more, my baby shower (last weekend), and doing lots of research about delivery, delivery interventions, c-sections and the like.

I wrote previously about how I read about the Bradley method for natural delivery, and how it seemed like a really good approach to me. I’m too late for the full series of 12 classes, but did find an instructor (thanks for the suggestion, Erin!) who is willing to meet with us privately to hopefully give us some tips and help with practice that we won’t necessarily get from reading the book and going through the exercises on our own. We have been doing some practicing, I’m learning how to RELAX! Also doing stretching and squatting and Kegels…

The above paragraphs were the first part of a post I started at the chiro on Thursday, that has now turned into two full, single spaced pages in Word, so I decided that rather than making you sit through all my ruminations at once (and wonder how I'm doing), I'd break it up into pieces so that I don't end up with a three or four page monstrosity!

Monday, July 17, 2006

I happened to be near an Old Navy this weekend, so I thought I’d go in and see what they had in the way of maternity clothes – any skirts, or long-ish shorts that I could actually wear to work? Of course it turned out that the particular store I went into didn’t have a maternity section at all, but I did happen to walk by one rack of “low-rise” skirts that I thought might fit. In yet another example of the cussedness of the universe, all they had in most of the colors that I would consider wearing were XXS and S. I could just tell by looking at those there was no way I was getting them over my much more ample ass. I did finally find a L, so went into the changing room to try it on. Quite a shock when I looked at my belly – all of a sudden, I’d acquired the beginnings of stretch marks! I was really hoping that I would avoid those. My genetics suggest that I might – neither my mom nor my sister got any. But there they were, in plain light pink. Oh well, nothing I could do about it. Que sera, sera.

I had to laugh at myself when I had M look at my belly later and he didn’t see anything. They weren’t stretch marks, idiot, it was just from the dress I was wearing being scrunched against my belly by the seat belt. He.

Anyway, some other things on my mind… I read on bbycenter that the Bradley method of natural childbirth allows women to deliver drug free 90% of the time! That is really a pretty amazing statistic, so I decided to get a couple of books out of the library and see what I think. Unfortunately, the method is taught over the course of 12 weekly sessions, so I’m a bit late for that. But I did read through the entire book on Friday night, and it sounds well worth trying. Now I just have to get M to buy into it (it requires full participation from your coach, which includes nightly practice sessions). I was hoping he’d read the book over the weekend after I’d said that I wanted him to, but that didn’t happen. I hate to nag, but I might have to! Does anyone out there have experience with this method? I’d love to hear what you thought of it.

Phred is still clearly breech, and although it does seem that breech vag. deliveries are possible, the medical establishment tends to want to do C-sections if the baby stays that way. So I’ve also been looking into methods for turning Phred over. There are a couple of positions that are suggested for encouraging this at home – one where you basically lie on your back at a –45 degree angle, your feet up on a couch, bum supported by pillows, and upper torso on the floor. The second is kneeling on the ground as if you’re going to crawl, but then putting your chest onto the ground, again getting your bum higher than your chest. Some other things include acupuncture, moxybustion (performed by an acupuncturist, burning certain herbs very close to particular spots near your baby toe – the heat is supposed to do something to encourage the baby to turn), or “external cephalic version (ECV)”, where your doctor uses her hands to turn the baby. Anyone tried any of these methods? At the moment I’m trying the two positions, although you’re supposed to do it more often during the day than I can manage, what with working. I thought I would ask my doctor about doing ECV at my next appointment, and perhaps make another appointment with my acu as well.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Things you learn and don't learn in hospital classes

We had the two childbirth related classes we're taking last Saturday, breastfeeding and Infant safety and CPR. I actually got more out of each of them than I was expecting, which was really nice.

One thing that we were told in the bf class, which I'd also read in the LLL book, was that you're not supposed to put soap on your nipples. So I decided that I would try and implement that over the last few days.

Day 1: Washed myself with my usual routine - using my puffy with D0ve bath wash, started with my left arm, then shoulder. Then skipped my chest which usually comes next, and moved over to my right arm. Of course, crossing my soapy left arm over my chest promptly got soap everywhere. After my right arm, then my left upper back, which got soap everywhere on my front that wasn't already soapy. So, scratch that attempt.

Day 2: More involved process - wash left arm / shoulder, and rinse. Rinsing of course sent soap down my front... wash right arm and rinse. More soap. Upper chest - more coursing of soap. Then, M and I usually shower together to save on time and water - while we were switching positions, I happened to rub against his arm - yet MORE soap.

Is anyone actually able to accomplish this???

Then, I had lunch with a friend the other day, and we were discussing her labor experience. She asked if I'd heard / read that one could poop during labor. I said that I had. She then said that there's another part that NO-ONE mentions - not the books, not the childbirth classes, nothing. And proceeded to tell me her story:

When she got to the pushing phase of labor, her sister and husband were in the delivery room with her. Each of them was supporting one of her legs. The first time the nurse told her to push, she pushed very gently, and let go a really loud fart. Since she wasn't expecting that (although it makes perfect sense that it would happen), she had to close her eyes and try really really hard not to laugh. After she was almost in control, she opened one eye to look at her sister, who by her facial expression was in exactly the same boat. After a few seconds, the nurse said "don't worry about it, it's going to happen, but go ahead and get your laughing out of the way", at which point all three of them totally lost it.

I'm really glad that she mentioned it to me, because I am such a giggler - I think it won't affect me as much now that I know it might happen, rather than taking me by surprise.

In Phred news, still having contractions, but still not nearly as much as before the magnesium. I asked at my appointment yesterday about exercising... still no, but I should get the all clear to do a bit after 34 weeks. I'm now measuring a little big for 32weeks, but doc wasn't worried. Although she did mention my weight for the first time at this appointment, after I gained 7 lbs since the last one! I think it's a lot of water though, as my ankles are starting to swell, and my fingers too. Total gain of 23lbs so far (including that 7!), so I really don't think that's so bad.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Bits and pieces

Interesting article from yesterday's Boston Globe - early results are very promising for using Omega-3 oils in IV feeding of infants instead of Omega-6, for avoiding liver problems.

Pregnancy notes:

My contractions have calmed down quite a bit - every now and again I'll get a bout of them, but they're never closer together than 10 minutes anymore, and for the most part they're an hour + apart. 42 weeks, here I come!

I think that all the drugs are finally out of my system completely - I haven't had to get up in the middle of the night to use the loo in a few days now. An uninterrupted night's sleep is highly welcome. Although I know I shouldn't get used to it.

I noticed sitting down today that my belly button is starting to stick out just a tiny bit. Up to this point it's gotten flatter and flatter. Now there's a tiny piece in the middle that's puffing out. It feels funny when I push on it!

I'm also getting a bit of the linea nigra. It's faint, but noticeable. I assume it'll keep getting darker over the coming weeks / months?

My hair is finally feeling a bit thicker - at least less of it is coming out in the shower. For a girl used to very fine, straight hair, it's nice to have a little more of it. Although I know that goes away after the baby is born.

And I'm willing to bet my clearer complexion will disappear in short order too!