Archive for January, 2009

22 Weeks Pregnant

Now that the holidays are over, time has definitely seemed to slow down with regards to my pregnancy. I am looking forward to birthing this child and think about it daily. I am hoping for a “painfree” birth this time around. I have been reading about HypnoBirthing and am not quite sure that’s the avenue I want to pursue, but some form of deep relaxation and perhaps meditation will be required. I don’t want to set my standard so high that I am disappointed if I should feel pain, but I am learning just how powerful the mind is, and what it can achieve.

I read recently in “Trick or Treatment” by Simon Singh and Edzard Ernst, MD, that the placebo effect is much more than someone misrepresenting how one feels when they believe they received a particular remedy or treatment. People often actually do get better–in a testable way–even if they have only received the placebo because the belief that something was done to relieve their suffering is powerfule enough to actually relieve their suffering. And so it can go with childbirth. If I really believe I can achieve a painfree birth, I may actually be able to achieve it.

I watched a program tonight that I saw a few times when I was pregnant with Daniel. It shows a handful of women who have chosen to birth either at home or in a birth center. As I watched each child be born, I wept and contracted. It was as if my mind, my emotions, or some force was triggering the contractions. But I also contract when I’m playing Tetris, so I suppose I shouldn’t read into it too much!

I will start drinking an infusion of red raspberry leaf in a few weeks to help strengthen and tone my uterus and pelvic floor for labor. I did drink the infusion when I was pregnant with Daniel and had a particularly efficient labor. Correlation does not neccessarily denote causation, but red raspberry leaf is full of vitamins and minerals (Vitamin C, Calcium, in particular), so even if it does no good for my muscle tone, I will still benefit.

Daniel threw a particularly nasty fit a couple nights ago when we were putting him to bed. I have never seen him so out of control. Earlier that day he threw a milder fit about taking a nap (he never actually slept). It seems that on the days he doesn’t nap, bed time is particularly difficult, but it’s never been so dramatic. Today, even after my laying with him for over an hour (trying to sleep myself), he refused to nap, so we were nervous about how bedtime would go. We were relieved that, although Daniel did express some frustrations at bedtime, they were relatively mild and he settled down very quickly.

I’ve been pretty patient regarding Daniel’s tantrums–which are thankfully few and far between–but I’m nervous about how I’ll be able to handle them when baby comes–especially if they result in waking baby or cause baby to be agitated or upset, too. I am hoping that all the patience I have learned from parenting Daniel will spill over into parenting two children. I may get a trial run pretty soon. I may be watching a friend’s baby girl for a couple days/week from February to April. I can earn a bit of extra money and better prepare myself for the tasks associated with parenting two children.

Sleep has been one of the biggest troubles for me–not just in this pregnancy, but in life. It’s not that I have trouble sleeping, I generally sleep well. But I have trouble deciding to go to bed–even when I am exhausted. I learned while I was still in college, that the feeling that I had something else to do (such as school work, house keeping, working) took over my subconscious mind while I was doing anything relaxing or restful (such as reading for pleasure, watching TV, or trying to get myself to bed), and I was unable to fully enjoy the activity. I think that is the feeling that neat-freaks talk about when they say they just can’t stand to be in a messy or cluttered environment. The problem for me is that while I feel that discomfort and discord, it’s not strong enough to motivate me to tidy up. It’s just strong enough for me to feel like I ought not be able to relax.

I have high hopes that before baby is born, I’ll be able to keep our home tidy (it’s MUCH tidier now than when Daniel was born), and that will do wonders for my ability to relax and feel like I accomplished whe I needed to in each day. Please, friends and family, feel free to ask about my progress and help keep me accountable. And if you want to stop by to help me get things in order, I’ll be sure to bake a fresh loaf of bread for you (I finally found a winning recipe…mmmmmm).

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21 Weeks Pregnant

At our ultrasound last week we discovered that we are likely having another boy. I say likely because baby wasn’t terribly interested in showing us the mechanics between his legs. The doctor (who I am actually coming to like) was pretty sure he saw boy parts, but didn’t rule out the possibility of a girl.

Still, we’re proceeding as though this one will be a boy and have finally had the name discussion. I had been pretty concerned about picking a boy’s name because we couldn’t decide how to proceed with using the family names we had been discussing since we first started talking about children years ago. It started to get complicated when both of us had a name to contribute. We didn’t want to pick just one of them–or more accurately, Dan was willing to drop his pick (Merrill–after his grandfather), but I would never have contributed my pick (Charles–after my great-grandfather, and, I found out a few days ago, Dan’s great-grandfather as well!) if he had not said he wanted to use Merrill. Family names have never really been that important to me. Long story short: Dan didn’t want to use 2 middle names, I didn’t want to use Merrill or Charles as a first name, I didn’t want to use Charles if we didn’t use Merrill, so we decided not to use either name.

We did come up with a boy’s name that we both really love: Reid. I read it, or heard it or something, and offered it as a suggestion, and Dan, with great surprise, said he’d been thinking of the possibility of using that name for the last couple weeks. It was the first name I offered (since we sat down to have the most recent discussion), and it was the one that stuck. Daniel his having a difficult time understanding that Reid is not read. Every time I’ve tried to tell him we are going to name the baby Reid, he tells me he is going to read to the baby.

And Daniel insists that we ought to call the baby Atu Beet–the way he used to say Uncle Dave when he was first learning to talk. Daniel had been telling us the baby was going to be a sister, so when we told him the baby was actually going to be a brother, we told him it would be just like Daddy and Uncle Dave. Someone in our family (may have even been me… but it’s been repeated so many times now, I can’t remember the originator) asked Daniel if we should call the baby Atu Beet, and he cracked up and said yes. And now he insists that we ought to call the baby Atu Beet. And we’re certainly not helping matters by laughing and repeating the story so often.

Also at our ultrasound, it was discovered that baby’s placenta is located toward the front of my uterus, which explains why I’ve felt less movement than I expected. The placenta is acting as a barrier to my ability to feel some of the kicks. I’ve really only been able to feel baby kicking below the waistline of my pants due to baby’s placental punching bag, so I haven’t been able to let others try to feel it yet–even though it’s possible to feel baby from the outside. Daniel and Dan have both finally been able to feel baby, though, and that’s what really matters.

We are finally going to throw Daniel his No More Milks party in the next couple of weeks. He’s been completely weaned since before Christmas. He still talks about Mama’s milk, but he hasn’t cried for it for awhile now. I’ve just told him I don’t have milk anymore. He seems comforted enough if I let him touch them–but has never had issue with my telling him not to touch them (in public, say).

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