The pregnancy

My journey into motherhood

Friday, March 23, 2007

4 Weeks Post Partum

Its been an incredible month with our new little family. With many ups and some downs, I feel like things are settling and we are all getting into a new groove. Here is the story of little Jonas. This is the end of my pregnancy blog.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Questions Answered

This is just a quick response to the questions I have had about the bleeding after Jonas was born.

When I began to bleed alot moments after Jonas was born, the midwives were ready with a shot of oxytocin which they injected into my thigh - I couldn't feel it at all - we were still laughing and looking at our little Jonas. The oxytocin is a hormone that helps the uterus contract quickly (among other things)- our bodies release it, but they just gave me more to help in the contracting department. Once the uterus begins to contract, the bleeding slows and stops and the placenta is delivered. I was given a second shot of oxytocin as I was still bleeding quite abit. I was feeling fine at this point, but the midwives wanted to be cautious, so they gave me an IV with oxytocin at which time they decided it would be best for me to be at the hospital for observation. It all happened very fast and by the time I got to the hospital the bleeding had slowed and I was stable - and still in happy La La land with Jordan and Jonas.

We spent the night at the hospital, which was comfy and easy. The nurses helped with latch on. The next day we went home and although I was quite pale looking with dark circles under my eyes, I felt really good. I am not sure but I think I was running on adrenalin for several days after the birth - I just felt so good. I also took alot of iron supplements and ate alot of kale and spinach and meat. I am not a big meat eater, but my body really craved it then.

I felt completely confident throughout the birth and with the midwives and even when I was bleeding, I was never worried. We have such great healthcare in Canada and I am just glad that when emergencies do arise, we have nurses and doctors who are well trained and able to perform at high levels in the rare situation when things don't progress smoothly. Our midwives are also highly trained with many years of intense schooling behind them.

I hope that answers some of your questions out there!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

The Birth Story

Its been hard to find the time to get away and update this blog, so for all of my friends and family out there, this is our birth story. And for you, sweet Jonas, this is the story of your physical arrival into our world, making us a family!

After being in denial for a little while, maybe an hour, I decided to play it safe and call work to let them know I wouldn't be in that day - that maybe I was in labour, but not sure. During this entire time I went from being a little sore sitting at the computer to bending over into childs pose with each contraction. After getting off the phone I got really excited and giddy and walked around, ok, ok, what should I do? I guess pack some clothes and go to town??? Maybe wait for Jordan to come home and then head over??? I was just too excited, so between phone calls to my mom and sister and Janet, I decided to throw some stuff together, do some dishes and drive over on the 2pm ferry from our island over to Campbell River, which is where we were planning a home birth. Of course, of all the days for Jordan to work in the forest, it was the day I was to go into labour - so, I just kinda laughed at it all and left him a note and caught the ferry. Luckily I could relax through the contractions on the 10 minute ferry ride.

Janet left work and picked me up and I settled myself into the room I had chosen to labour in. At this point I wasn't able to talk through my contractions, which, from the start at 10AM were about 3 minutes apart and 20 seconds long. Very consistent. I put a heating pad on my lower back and pelvis/sacrum area and drank tea while relaxing in childs pose. All of the discomfort was in the back area; nothing up front! Not at all what I had thought true labour would be like. Chatted with my mom and sister on the phone and stopped to breath through each contraction. Janet kept on trying to contact Jordan. I called the midwives at this point to let them know and they thought that my body would probably wait until Jordan came to me before I went into further labour. They said that they would stop by after work that evening.

Jordan finally got home and I spoke with him on the phone - he was so excited, yelling into the phone, getting ready - he was probably as giddy as I was earlier on in the day when I realized I was in labour.

By the time Jordan arrived around 5:30 my contractions were getting a little longer, but still around 3 minutes apart. We chatted and we settled in - still totally comfortable. The midwives arrived around 7pm and my first internal exam showed that I was indeed thinning and approx 3 cm dilated. They left and said they would call again in a few hours to find out our progress. At this point I was beginning to feel like I wanted to be alone with Jordan. Up until that point I was feeling very social and had been hanging out with Jerry, Janet, Case and Linda. I began to feel like I needed to go within myself further - not only during the contractions, as I had been doing. I was still bending over into childs pose for each contraction because there was definitely alot of discomfort.

We decided at that point to try out the big tub - it was in our plan to use it alot and perhaps to give birth in it. It didn't work. I needed to stay in a bent over position for each contraction and I wasn't able to emmerse myself fully into the water like this. At this point I began to realize that many of the things I had planned for this birth wouldn't be used - I am glad I was prepared though. Also, none of the massage techniques we had practiced were useful yet - in fact, I didn't want to be touched at all!

Jordan was wonderful and did all he could to make me comfortable - gave me water, gatorade, timed contractions, adjusted heat pad and pillows. At this point he said that I was getting 75 second contractions every 3 minutes and so we decided it was time for him to call the midwives...meanwhile, I had totally retreated into my body and just let everything happen. My body and baby completely took over and my mind was left to visualize and help the process along. There was pain, but it was a powerful pain that reminded me that I would soon be meeting our little Guido.

The midwives came, and after my second internal exam, I was 7 cm dilated and my bag of waters was pushed tight against my cervix. There was alot of pressure at this point and from this point on, I am prety sure I was so focused that my eyes were shut throughout most of the rest of the labour. I know I was making alot of noise at this point. Powerful woman warrior noise - noise I had never made before.

My eyes were open, however, when my waters finally broke all over the bathroom floor. Alot of pressure was taken away at that point and I felt good and relaxed, but then I must have dilated right to 9.5 cms becaause all of the sudden I heard the midwives exclaim that my sounds had changed and they knew I was getting to that pushing stage. I was beggining to feel the urge to push. They checked me one final time and there I was 9.5cms dilated with a little flap of cervix in the way. Candice said that she could help get it out of the way if I could endure some sharp pain for a few moments, so I agreed. She pushed the flap down and got me to push hard, push until the head was over the cervix.

And there I was, pushing, holding tightly onto Jordan's hands and then having him massage my thighs. Sheila suggested we head to the bathroom and try a squat. I squated with the help of Jordan, while he sat on the toilet! It felt good. I later found out I was almost sleeping between pushes! And then within the hour, out came Jonas and into the arms of his laughing parents. I will never forget that moment! We were lauging! It was wonderful! He was pink and his eyes were open and just calmly, contentedly staring right at us! He was so calm!

Jonas Davin

Feb 22, 2007, 2:47pm

6lbs 14oz, 20.5 IN

It couldn't have been better, the whole event was powerful - nothing will ever compare to it.

Afterwards we had to go to the hospital because of my excessive bleeding - a precaution. In the end I was fine - but had lost a litre of blood. Jonas was totally healthy and Jordan was as always my totally supportive and loving partner.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Jonas Davin Has Arrived!

We officially met little Jonas about 14 hours after that last blog entry. A really exciting and powerful event that I will write about later. For now I will say that we are a happy new family and he is beautiful and healthy and it feels like he has been with us alot longer than 4 days. He is so familiar already. He was born easily at 6lbs 14 ounces, peaceful and alert and looking at us with such intensity as we laughed and looked into his clear content eyes.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

my mom and me

I just had a bath while first talking to my sister and then my mom. Just chatting, but still sore, only rhythmically now! When I got out I finally timed myself - 3 minutes and then 15 - 20 secs of contraction. Enough to make me stop and relax for a few secs. Called work, was totally unsure - is this real or not, maybe I should just go in and work, maybe its not real yet, maybe just a prelabour/early labour thing. Its hard to know! But it might be hard to be with the kids during those few seconds of contraction. So I guess I will not go in today. I am a little giddy and thinking, ok, what should I do? Pack up and then relax? Or just relax?? Haha, and Jordan is at work today! Of all the days to be at work! My first real contractions...I think? He has been laid off for abit now, but his dad needed him today and they are out in the forest!!!!! I am abit shakey and excited and giddy and in a really happy mood....we'll see!!!

Jordan and his dad
Week 39

Jordan and his mom

me and my dad

Still waiting on the little one to send off some hormonal messages to my body to let me know he's on his way! I had my first internal exam yesterday and the midwife confirmed that he is now at 0 in the pelvic area, meaning fully engaged! I can feel alot of pressure in the pelvic area and my lower back; sometimes sore sometimes not. For the first time in my pregnancy I am craving certain foods....steak, fruit and lots of carbs. This has been going on for about three weeks but its more intense now.
I am abit sore of sitting, so I will write again later.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Week 38

Its been an interesting week. Both Monday and Tuesday I woke at 5AM to stronger contractions where I just got into childs pose and relaxed with some deep breathing until I was able to fall asleep again. Wednesday there was alot of cervical pressure and alot of achiness in my lower back and pelvis with alot of 'braxton hicks'. It was the most uncomfortable yet. Today I was really tired, so I napped alot before I went to work at 2pm. I didn't have any of the sensations I had yesterday. My mom thinks it is prelabour and I agree, the time is near.

My midwife also thought that the baby has dropped another cm, so I am for sure -1 or even 0. She also mentioned that sometimes its good at this point to think about anything that may stall my labour, such as fear or anything going on mentally. I can't say there is any fear, but there are always things that come to mind, like my imaginary list of 'to do's' before baby is born. I am almost complete but there are still a few things, which I have convinced myself could wait until after baby is born. It would be wonderful, if I am truly in a 'prelabour' state, that by the time I am in 'offical' labour, I have effaced and dilated 3 or 4 cms... That could be what is happening now...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Belly Casting Party!

Last weekend Janet hosted a small and intimate belly casting party - which included Lisa, Jill and Linda. We casted (which has to be done really quickly as it dries in minutes), snacked and chatted about all things womanly. OOooh and I was also treated to a nice massage by Linda.

Jill and Lisa sculpting - I couldn't feel a thing, except for the little one kicking against the inside of the hard cast

Hard to believe that the next time I see Lisa I will be a mum! This is truly a very different time in our lives compared to our early twenties when we both lived in Victoria, schooling, dancing at the clubs every weekend....downhill mnt biking at the dump and highlands on bikes that costed more than our cars! haha.

Thanks for the party everyone - now its up to the little one to decide when he is ready to come out and meet us.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Week 37

It's official! We've made it to 'full term'! The midwives came over to Janet and Case's house yesterday to check out our birthing space and check in with us. All is well and we are feeling very prepared and excited to welcome little Guido into the world. I have no regular contractions yet, just stronger Braxton Hicks and achiness in my back/pelvis region. Definitely swollen hands and face and ankles, but nothing at all to complain about. Without any internal exams yet, the midwivse guess through palpating outside around my pelvis how far the head has descended. Yesterday they guessed at -1 according to the pelvic station chart below.

In the evenings after work I can feel the head putting pressure on my cervix which although a little sore, I get very excited! It's slowly happening!

2 more weeks left of work. I decided to work as long as possible so that I would remain busy until the end. We are prepared, the house is ready and there is not much else to do but I am glad to be at work each day. Other than that I have plenty of time for rest, relaxation and exercise. My last day of work is actually a full day and will include taking kids to the climbing gym and making pizzas...if I have not gone into labour by then, I am sure this will set it off!!!!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Throughout this pregnancy my highlights have always been my midwife visits each month. Now that we are on a weekly visit basis and B Day is coming so quickly, I look forward to these visits more than ever. Jordan has come for several visits, my little 8 year old nephew, Cameron was with me when we heard the heartbeat for the first time and then my parents came for the 35 week visit. In such a casual and comfortable environment, I have never felt rushed. I love to hear the heartbeat, test my own urine, make my own decisions and discuss all the wonderful things going on in my body. I am so amazed and I love my body more than I could have ever thought. Baby conceiving, growing and birthing is to me, the most obvious proof of the inherent mind/body/spiritual connection. From before conception I visualised this journey and called out for this little one to join us. I have shared my body with him for 9 months; I have eaten and exercised in ways I felt were the best for both of us.

We have talked to you and communicated with you throughout all these months and you have always communicated back! You are so active and healthy and I love to feel you move. I love your little feet. I love your little fingers that are always tickling around my pelvis. You have been head down and pointed into my pelvis for so long now. The midwives said you have been very determined-not all babies position themselves into the correct position so early. You do alot of turning still. One morning you will be facing left, hours later you will be facing right. Sometimes you are facing out. I have been working with you on that one - and when I visualise and then get into the cat pose, you always turn around again.

My midwife appointment last week reaffirmed my own feelings that the baby is on his way soon. They said...just hold on 9 more days and you are in the clear for your homebirth. So that has been my focus through all my 'ripe' signs which include:
*more pressure during contractions
*backache/pms cramping
*aching pelvis
*head lowering into pelvis
*weight gain may have leveled off (26lbs)
*slightly higher blood pressure (but still low - I am always low)
*breast swelling...again
*a small amount of 'bloody show' last night.... I think....

So, we have 2 more days and then its up to the little one as to when he wants to make his grand appearance.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

dad and I

mom and dad

Week 36

9 months! I have made it but am abit sore now. haha. If I were to go into labour now, I would be able to give birth at Campbell River Hospital, which is our local hospital. After next Thurs I am in the clear for a home birth!

Time has gone by quickly, in a way. My parents came from the Kootenays for a quick visit;
luckily the weather held out and we went for some walks and did some baby shopping

my mom and I

It was nice to visit with them before I have the baby. Next time may not be such a relaxing visit...and I got to show off my big bump!!!

Since they left a week ago, I have been getting irritable with lack of activity and being tired. I also have this cold that has been hanging over me for the past week. I NEVER get sick! I thought it had gone and then wham it kicked me in the butt again on Friday - I woke up with a sore throat again. Luckily I didn't have to work that day! I am grumpy, but Jordan doesn't think so - but I know I am bitter and tired and sore and I don't feel very positive today. So I will just wallow in my grumpiness for today... don't feel sorry for me, I want to be sour at the moment.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Week 34

The beginning of this pregnancy found us always looking at the growth of babies at each week. Hands, fingers, bone growth, brain development etc... Now nearing the end, as baby development is less intense I find myself looking at other landmarks along the pregnancy. Some of the things that crossed my mind were survival rates if born at 25 weeks, 30 weeks etc. Now that we are nearing the countdown, (well, almost), I am excited for week 36 to roll around because that means I would be able to have the baby at the Campbell River Hospital which is only a 9 minute ferry ride away. Any earlier and I would be flown away to Victoria, Nanaimo or Vancouver! Once we reach 37 weeks, I will be considered full term and will be able to have a home birth as planned. Our midwife is not legally allowed to do homebirth on our little Gulf Island; our plan is to have the baby at Janet' and Case's house (Jordan's mom and partner) in Campbell River.

I am feeling prepared and ready to give birth. 9 months is a good amount of time to prepare. To contemplate, to grow and learn about babies - its enough time to explore parental options as well as personal education and career options. Of course you can never fully plan anything - you need to go with and adapt to whatever comes your way, but its good to figure some things out, its good to visualize what it is you want and therefor strive for it. I don't care that I may come across as 'over the top', but I have thought about such 'basic' things as to co sleep or not, crib or not, vaccines or not or some, to buy or not, cloth or plastic diapers, communication, attachment, socialisation, intelligence - all baby stuff really. I have grown fascinated with these things. Did I ever think I would be like this 5 years ago? Babies and all?? No way.

But I do know that I am the type of person who will get interested in something and then fully immerse myself into it until I am full satiated. That's why I have sometimes felt that journalism would be such a fulfilling career - to immerse oneself and learn all you can on a subject and then write about it. That's the dream though and I am sure in reality the job wouldn't always be quite so adventurous (like the poor reporters who have to write/report on the progress of the BC Stadium roof coming up....ugh).

Offspring is a lifelong adventure. I look at our parents and they are not only still parenting( in a different way of course), they are also grandparenting!

So in these months of growing a baby, I have also been loading my mind and senses with new things. Its been really enriching. I am how I have always been, a thinker, never an extremist. I like to hear all sides and let things sink in. I make my own decisions and I am always confident in them because I have taken the time to think them through. Regardless of any ones opinion. Jordan is very similar and I think when it will come to parenting, we will have a good time together.

I haven't mentioned anything about our prenatal classes on this blog yet. Many months ago we began to look into different types of classes and we decided on Hypnobirthing. The name really conjures up all sorts of funny images and I don't know if I like the name (that could be my preconceived ideas of what hypnotherapy is). We are nearing the end of our 8 weeks of classes - once a week in Courtenay - we are the only ones from 'up island' who have taken the course. Our instructor is also pregnant and the other couple we took the class with were about 6 weeks ahead of us. It was a really good learning experience and I felt that it was even more interesting because the other father to be was a young doctor whom we had some great discussions with (and his wife as well).

Basically Hypnobirthing included attending several classes with Jordan where we learned a variety of exercises, from relaxation and breathing to visualization techniques. We also received a few CD's to listen to at home. It doesn't sound so different from other prenatal classes out there - except for the homework. The idea is to learn to get yourself into a deep state of relaxation where you are totally receptive to new information. Your partner feeds you information on pain and fear release if necessary. The idea is to have drugs in labour - but drugs that the body naturally produces. If you are filled with fear during labour, other natural drugs will be released that actually make you more tense and open to discomfort. Knowing as much about your body and the process of birthing should really eradicate any fears - after all, birthing is supposed to be a natural process like any other bodily function.

I know it is still winter, but after a walk along Rebecca Spit last weekend, I got into the mood to do some gardening. It turned out that many Quadra Islanders had the same urge as me that weekend! The season of rebirth will soon be arriving...

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Week 33

I can now see a pattern throughout this pregnancy; every three or four weeks I spend several days totally exhausted. Last week was really intense, I could barely drag myself out of bed at 12:30/1:00 every afternoon in order to get ready for work. Once I was at work I was fine, but then 4 or 5 hours later when I returned home I was totally exhausted again. The worst thing was being so tired at that point and not being able to sleep. I was tired, but my legs were so I would lay awake in bed trying to read and finally sleep after 2am. It was really hard, but I slept when I could and Jordan was totally supportive in my sleeping whenever possible.

After a restful weekend, this week has been totally back to normal. My energy level is great and I am even falling asleep by 1 or 2am!! I am much happier this week because I am getting things done - I have this to do list before baby arrives and I really want to get it all done so that I can just take the time after birth to focus on our new family.

I am really excited and am looking forward to giving birth to our little one. Its gonna be quite exciting for all three of us! And of course for our whole entire family!

My appetite is still very strong and Jordan has been cooking all of our dinners, which have been really healthy. I am lucky because after I come home from work I can just put my legs up and visit with him and then eat. Its all done! He has also been very intuitive with my needs and I feel so loved and cared for right now. It takes two in more than one way to make and grow a baby. Then it probably takes a whole village to raise it! I know for sure from experience that the first part of the above is true. Perhaps that is why I have had such an 'easy' pregnancy. Actually its probably a number of things, including genetics.

My mother is the eldest in her family. Same as me. My parents were actually pregnant with me at their wedding, just like we were! Both marriages had nothing to do with being pregnant - just lucky presents! I was in a posterior position until right before I was born, so my mother had a long and mildly painful back labour. My baby is sideways posterior and I am not sure what the official name for that is. I have begun doing some of the exercises that may help turn him before he becomes too engaged!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Week 31

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2007!! Jordan and I stayed on the island for this years winter festivities. Had a Christmas Eve party with family; ate some venison stew - fresh venison care of Jerry and his new crossbow, veggies, breads and baked yummy goods. Charades and crokinole (sp?) and lots of laughter.

Nick and Case playing crokinole Christmas Eve

Valerye and Casey Christmas Eve

It was nice to just see everyone and slow down and enjoy each others company - which is something I had been missing over the past while.
At 5:40AM Case and Janet made sure we were all up - it was fun even though I was abit tired. Devyn was the only kid this year (which is what makes early morning raising more fun at Christmas) she was super excited to see what Santa brought for her (and as it turned out, for everyone else as well). I went back to bed after a couple of hours while everyone else stayed up.

Our tree; Devyn doing art Christmas Eve

Janet and Case Christmas Morning, 6AM!!!!
Had a traditional and delicious Jill pancake breakfast later on and opened some more gifts - at which point the sun had come up, enticing us for a walk along Rebecca Spit. Went home and had a luxury bath with Jordan with our new salts and soaps and then headed to Campbell River to Janet (and now Case's) house for more festival cheer - turkey yum yum.

Breakfast and presents at Jerry and Jill's house

After Christmas we went down to Victoria to visit family and friends. Bower stayed at Chico's house and spent a few days with the guys surfing the west coast. I was feeling really good and happy to be spending some days making the rounds and doing city things. Spent New Years with Natalie, her family, Casey and our new nephew Taagen. It had been a few months since I had seen him - now that he is about 9 months he is much more mobile and animated. When I would visit with him he gave me this wild smile and laughed and it felt that he was giving me these sly looks with the intention of saying...I know whats growing in your belly and I can't wait to meet my new cousin who will be only 11 months younger than me and wow are we ever gonna have some great advetures together....thats what I felt when we were together...
Auntie Valerye, 8 months, Taagen, 9 months, Victoria

Uncle Jordan and Devyn

Monday, December 18, 2006

Week 29

It's been awhile since the last entry and all I can say is time is moving by so quickly.

Over the past couple of weeks British Columbia's southern west coast has been slammed with some really unusual weather - hurricane force wind storms and snow. Because we are not equipped for this type of weather, many people are stuck at home when the snow piles up too high-basically waiting for the snow to melt. The toughest thing for most people is the loss of electricity and missing work - and of course any damage to their homes/vehicles etc from falling trees and branches.
Jordan removing a small tree blocking our driveway as we race to the ferry...

Jordan and I are both hoping that everything weather wise returns to normal and that we can get back to regular work.

I discussed my B. Hicks with my midwife and she felt that I had done the right thing on those few days that they were unusual, close together and accompanied by the cramping and low backache. I had just taken it easy, put my feet up and used a heating pad for most of the day. She said that sometimes when the head is already down and there is pressure on the cervix, it may become stimulated enough to start contractions. We don't want that now, do we? Too early! When I told my sister about that, she reminded me that all three of her children arrived early - 2 weeks, 3 weeks and then 2 months early!

As far as the B.Hicks; many women never even notice them until the last few weeks of pregnancy, but some women who are more sensitive to their body may feel them much sooner. Throughout the entire pregnancy, a woman will have the Braxton Hicks every 20 minutes! It is just the body's way of becoming stronger and preparing itself for birthing at the end. Our bodies are so amazing!

My belly growth has been, overall, slow but consistent. The baby is still incredibly active, especially as we lay down at night to sleep. The movements are so big that my breath is sometimes taken away or I will gasp in surprise. It feels like I have either an octopus inside me or just a pair of big strong legs. We are able to feel the legs and back now (i grab at them sometimes) and the hands feel like little tickles and flutters down around my pubic bone.

Now, in my seventh month, I have many of the physical symptoms of pregnancy. Shortness of breath, acid reflux, restless leg at night, calf cramping and great fluctuations in energy levels - from speedy nesting and cleaning urges to totally drained. Also, some of that long ago 16 year old rollercoster of emotional ups and downs has revisited - this time, however, with the maturity of a 30 year old, I know how to handle this state of hormonal flux. I let those tears come and the emotions surge, with no expectations. I don't analyze or hold onto them; I let them go without a second thought. I don't dump the garbage on anyone and especially not myself. In a society so afraid to age, so afraid to slow down and celebrate the aging self, it all seems kind of crazy to me. All those tears of a teenage girl, the speediness of the early twenties; it was all necessary, but nothing I would want to relive again! A deep rooted confidence has grown from my earlier experiences, less is more has become more meaningful - instead of a million friends and a load of socialising, I put greater energy into the few that I really connect with on a deeper level. This realisation came when I made decisions about who to invite to our wedding. I did so much reevaluation of friendships from the past and I ended up only inviting my dearest friends of forever and then the ones of more recent. How will I look back when I am 40, 50, 60? I hope that I can still look back as fondly as I do now, yet with more confidence and more growth and living behind me, always celebrating the aging process. When I am older I can see myself laughing out and yelling 'HOT FLASH' for everyone to hear, like my mother in law, or groaning and complaining of a sore back or ear hairs, like my dad, so that when I visit I give him massages and trim his hair...

Speaking of celebrating aging, among my many odd thoughts and incessant daydreaming in this final trimester, an odd concern came to my mind from who knows where and what. I am planning on having only one child, yet that 'plan' has flip flopped many times throughout this pregnancy for both Jordan and I. My thought the other day was - well, if I have only one child, that may not give me many grandchildren and it would be nice to have grandchildren one day! Ohh, the pregnant mind is a marvelous and complex phenomena.

'They say' you are forever changed when you have a baby. I say that being pregnant has temporarily (hopefully) altered my mind. I have never been so self absorbed, never daydreamed so much; I haven't even read any fiction novels in months. Just baby books. When I would always listen to CBC radio docs and then talk about them with Jordan, I just zone out and only on occasion have I followed any of the stories. Poor Jordan yet good Jordan for being so loving and patient. That's just one example. I guess when you are sharing your body with someone (baby) other than yourself, you are self absorbed - just as in the act of sex - but this is full time.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Snowed in!

It's been really nice around here lately. The snow has been a real treat and I hope we get more of it later on this winter. For now, the temperature is going up and its all melting away - good thing since we have missed the last few days of work.

But its been worth those days off!

Bower enjoyed the snow as well.

Braxton Hicks

As the snow melted away today, we got the Westfalia ready to sell. It was about the only active thing I did besides walking over to my inlaws house and then later helping Jordan clean the kitchen. Over the past couple of days my B.Hicks have been more frequent. I know it is just practice labour but today it got to the point where every time I went up or down the stairs my belly tightened to the point where I wondered how my baby wasn't going to be strangled. I would then lay down and within a few minutes of relaxation the belly would loosen up. I also felt really out of breath going up and down the stairs and my lower back was quite achy as was my sternum/solar plexus area. The heat pad cured the backache, but it was all abit tiring. I also went to the bathroom alot more than usual. Maybe thats from all the Mandarin "Christmas" oranges I have been eating. Who knows.

I left a message with my midwife about what went on today. Am I supposed to get off my feet with B.Hicks when they bother me or should I ignore them? I didn't think I would be calling Gaelyn so early in my pregnancy, but I couldn't find an answer to these questions in any of my books.

Rumour Has It...

that Chara is probably pregnant and if pregnant probably conceived right around when we did last Spring. Jill is quite positive that we will have another baby arriving a couple months after ours!!!

Now does that look like a baby hump?

And is she eating like a pregnant mum horse?

Monday, November 27, 2006

Week 26

Our intuition was right and we are having a boy afterall! Last week I had my ultrasound with CR Obstetrition Dr. Kruger where I discovered the male parts and also where the little guy is positioned. He is head down facing out and he probably won't move too much from that position. It was a wonderful little appointment and the doctor said that baby and mom look great!

As far as movement, there is still alot of activity going on. He is always on the go! I can touch and massage his legs and knees and he doesn't pull back as much anymore. He must sleep alot at night, because his movements are intense in the evenings and then for another hour after I go to bed and then when I wake up in the morning he is at it again. He is moving as I type.

Since even before conception I have thought alot about this baby, and since I have been pregnant I have spent consistently alot of time bonding, actually both Jordan and I have spent alot of time together, bonding with the little one. Something tells me that your children choose you and from the beginning there is always a sharing of emotions between mother and child (beginning in utero). Its just how I feel. The past couple of weeks have been quite stressful for many reasons and also I think I have abit of those hormonal fluctuations happening. Thrughout this time of dealing with a sick dog, putting him down, deciding to sell our VW van and on and on, I have not stopped myself from getting upset or emotional - I have let myself go and just communicate to baby why I feel this way and that its only temporary. I am hoping that he understands in some strange way, because I know that he feels all that I feel.

Everyday is a new day and I happily ended my week with snow in the forecast. Saturday it started to snow! I had a great weekend. Had some family over for dinner. Went to see the Banff Mountain film festival showings in both Campbell River and on Quadra Island. It was great! I go every year and have always enjoyed seeing all the films, all the adventure and culture from around the world. I am so excited to take our little one on some great adventures in the future!

It continued to snow and on Sunday morning Jordan and I skied to Heriot Bay, had some tea and then walked home. The road crew had cleared the roads by then and the skiing wouldn't have been as nice!

We have about a foot of snow at the moment and I don't think it will melt for the next week. I have heard that Victoria got 2 feet! Everything seems to go crazy on the coast when we get these big dumps-no one is prepared like they are in the interior. I slid all over the place in the VW today, stalled it, fixed it and then got stuck at the Childrens Centre! Made it home in the end.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Week 25

I am now close to the end of my second trimester. This is my first pregnancy and it has been such a wonderful experience; I have learned so much more about my self and my body. Jordan has learned alot about my body and his self. We have become even closer, which I didn't know was possible.

Previously, I had no real physical complaints, only fatigue, constant bathroom trips and an aversion to any meat/fish. At this point there have been a few minor things that have come up such as muscle cramps in my calves in the mornings and some emotional shifts.

Its almost like the emotional PMS I used to get, but it has been ongoing since early November. I am wondering, however, could it be the pregnancy or could it be the constant rain? Some of these feelings include anxiousness, grumpiness, impatience and sometimes even boredom! I have never been the type of person who is ever bored...but sometimes in my freetime I am feeling bored. Outside of working and household stuff, I am feeling bored. Its too ugly outside to go for a hike. Its too stormy to head up to the Mnts, I don't feel like working on any projects around the house. I am nervously waiting for some outcomes and responses on the documentary I am producing. I just feel kind of out of sorts... I am bummed at having no prenatal yoga classes to attend - I stopped going to my regular classes this past week. I still do some birth stretches and some yoga at home, but its just not the same as a class!

I hate to be so negative, but this is how I have been feeling these past two weeks. For the first time in 8 years and since I have been living on the coast, I have begun to miss the snowy winters of the West Kootenays, where my family live. I miss Christmas there as well. Maybe next year all three of us will head up there and celebrate with them!

Now over to all that is good now. The little one is active and moving around alot. Less random kicks and more smooth movements. I have alot of fun watching when the baby does full flips. We are growing quickly now! Jordan and I are enjoying this time together; our freedom and everything else we know will be forever changed when the little one arrives. We also spend alot of time fantasizing about what life will be like after the birth. Will our baby think we are weirdos? How long will it sleep with us? Who will it look like? Fantasizing is alot of fun at the moment.

I am also really looking forward to our move to Victoria at the end of the summer. Vic is such a fun little city and there will be a ton of great stuff to do with the little one. Jordan will be back in full time school and my job will be to hold the fort down (or up?). I will be a stay at home mom or as some people say S.A.H.M.

For a year anyway.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Our other children

We have slowly been acquiring baby stuff and moving them into the nursery. For some reason, our pets seem to be really interested in the space. Bower, our dog, has decided that this is her new sleeping area and I will now always find her napping next to the crib. We also have two cats - Black and Grey (brothers), who are basically wild cats who sometimes decide to come home to visit. The other day I discovered Grey sleeping inside the bassinette which has been put inside the crib. I have seen him a few more times in there since then. What is it about this room that is drawing our animals?

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Week 23

This picture was taken with our new digital camera! Tonight Jordan gave me my bday present a little early (Nov 7 is the big day). I had really wanted one knowing that we will probably be taking zillions of pics with the new baby. They will all just be snapshots and developing is so expensive - digital seemed like the perfect way to go. I will also probably take a million belly shots because I am just loving my body so much right now and I think that it looks so special! Aside from the kicking, I can now feel body parts moving around as well as flipping. I still can't identify the body parts, but there is definitely alot of exercise going on in there. Sometimes I will go for a day or two and the movements are less and it seems as if the baby is sleeping more - those are the times when I am more tired as well. But the last few days it seems as if the baby has been active for much of the day and into the evening! Must be getting strong!

Tonight we had a dual birthday dinner at Janet's house - another woman - Linda was also there and celebrating her birthday. She is a massage therapist who has furthered her education into learning about energy balancing and pregnancy. Her partner was at dinner as was Case and Jordan. Really nice night and we must have sat around the dinner table for 3 hours! I fully SAVOURED a small glass of Southern Auz wine - a Shiraz/Sauvignon and it was soooo nice! It took hours to finnish, but I enjoyed it so thoroughly! Being pregnant, I never drink alcohol, just a special occassion - but I really enjoyed taking the time to enjoy this small amount of high quality wine. It made me think how nice it would be to do a wine tasting tour in some country like Australia or France or sensual!!!! IS that romantic or what?

Linda and Janet

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Week 22

Week 22

I am now feeling more energized and less tired. It feels like I (baby) just had a huge growth spurt and just overnight my belly is finally noticeable. I am taking a yoga class which has also done wonders for my energy levels. Every day that I do yoga is that much better; I am happier and much more energized.

Now that I am no longer with that 'bloated belly' look and the bump has actually formed, it has all moved higher and I am able to wear my normal pants in total comfort. They will probably fit just fine until the baby drops at the end of the nine months. BUT, now that my belly is sticking out, my shirts are riding up. Lucky for anyone pregnant during these times of fashion, though, as you can go to just about any trendy store and buy long shirts that come down below the butt. Perfect! Anytime I am browsing through these stores and the salesgirl asks if she can help, I always say, I love these new fashions! They are perfect maternity wear! Sometimes I get a strange look, but its kind of funny anyway.

After the Halloween party at the children's centre (my current employment) I went home and relaxed with Jordan. It was really fun being with all the kids and their excitement and costumes; all the parents had been going all day with festive activities and were geared up with snacks and warm gear to trick or treat, stop at fire hall for hot chocolates and finally check out the games and haunted house and finally fireworks at the community centre. Phew...I figured, this year I am gonna relax because I know that after this year, I will probably be one of those frazzled parents running around with their kid on Halloween. Don't get me wrong, I am totally excited to be one of those parents - really, but for now I am gonna rest and enjoy the quiet life...

Actually, I have been very conscious of my freedom and I have been really taking advantage of my time to myself and privately with Jordan. I will be 30 in a few days and I am so excited for all that the coming years have to offer. My 20's were all about me, growth, freedom, and tons of sponeneity. Things have now moved forward within me and my life is taking on a new shape. It has not been sudden change - just a slow evolvement for the past couple of years which is now taking a more obvious shape. Now I have a clearer vision for my future, I know what I want and I know how I will get there. I am already there, really, in mind, but it will in time translate into life and all that surrounds me. It already has in many ways; being with my life partner and getting married, building our house and being pregnant. These are all very new things but they have brought such fullfillment and they are the natural step forward in my life. I could no longer be fullfilled with all that consumed me earlier in my 20's, they just don't have the appeal.

Now I am excited to give birth - like the actual event! I am excited to start a new family and to be back in school in the next few years. Jordan is starting up again this Sept to finnish his Enviro Degree at Royal Roads in Victoria. I will be heading back to school a year or two after him. Our little one will only be about 6 months when we leave Quadra Island and return to Victoria; our plan is to return once more of our schooling is completed. In the meantime we will use our Quadra house as a vacation rental.

But for now I am going to enjoy all the activity in my belly, the silence and then head to work. Four more months until our new arrival!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Week 20 cont...

Ultrasound of our
baby at 19 Wks!!!

Here is the active little one. In one shot it is waving at us and the other one looks as if something is floating between its legs...umbilical cord maybe??

Although there was nothing going on in my belly Friday night, Jordan put his big warm hand over my bump and within a few moments I felt a commotion and sure enough the little one became active and gave a few big kicks (or high fives??) into his hand. The two finally made some serious contact!

Fairly busy weekend with charity auction for the Quadra Childrens' Centre and then spent Sunday in CR with inlawts - Jordan helped Case (his mother, Janet's, partner) put in some house windows while us ladies went to a baby shower party/exhibit put on by local businesses. Gained some info, got some free goodies and saw lots of pregant women - 3 out of about 20 were carrying twins! Then browsed around at some of the baby stores. There is just so much 'stuff' out there to buy for baby, half of which don't even really seem to be that useful for very long. So far, we have been given a ton of stuff and haven't really spent a cent - well except for the bassinette I bought at the recent Quadra - Philippines Connection garage sale. Also, I am sure that once the little one is born, there will be many gifts, there are 3 sets of grandparents afterall (lucky baby!). Not to mention 6 1st cousins, an auntie and 3 uncles and lots of extended family. 2 of the cousins will be only 11 months old when baby is born! Theres a whole lot of people out there who are excited for our March arrival.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Week 20

Met with my midwife, Gaelyn, this week. All results from the ultrasound appeared normal and I am a B+ blood type. I have a slightly above average amount of amniotic fluid, but I am told that its still perfectly normal. Gaelyn said that all growth with our baby has been like clockwork and that its development is the same as every baby out there that is normal and healthy. From this point on, no two babies are the same. For instance, although the fundal height of my baby is as it should be, 20 cms (the measurement from pubic bone to top of uterus), the top rests at my ribcage rather than navel like alot of babies. I do have a rather short trunk...but I am still in awe as to how high it is. Also, the belly is sticking out more and I have finally gained weight. The kicking and rolling and whatever else is going on inside the belly is as strong as ever. Last night I laid on my bed for a few minutes after work and stared at my belly and all of the sudden it was as if there was some kind of party down there, I could actually see my belly rippling and protruding. It was amazing. Then I realized I had just sucked on three toffee candies and I am sure it was a sugar rush to 'Guido'. Jordan missed the party as he was in the shower. Next time.

My weight gain, I am sure, was helped along with two turkey dinners for Thanksgiving. First one at my father in laws (Jerry) house. Huge scrumptius turkey and tons of food with enough room for his wife's (Jill) fresh pumpkin pie (one piece for me, one for Guido). It was a wonderful feast in the mid afternoon autumn sunlight with lots of family to celebrate with. Afterwards the guys checked out Jerry's new crossbow and did some target practice. The deer have been all over our gardens this summer and eaten nearly everything they can get to!
Dinner number two was at my mother in laws house (Janet) where we enjoyed more turkey with all the delicious dishes and some pumpkin pie and, of course, the infamous cheesecake 101 bites yum yum yum. Am I a totally spoiled pregnant lady or what? Oh, and we are still eating turkey!

Today I am not quite as tired as I had been for the past couple of weeks. Although I haven't been to the gym or done any yoga in a week, I am still going on alot of walks. This incredible stretch of sunshine will be gone for the weekend, and I think that the rains are just around the corner. Jill and I took the dogs to the spit this morning and it felt really nice to be in the cool crisp sunshine. The walk goes so quickly when you talk the entire time - I could have walked for hours! It was nice.

Everytime I visit Gaelyn, I borrow several books from the clinic library. I will list a couple of them on here soon which I thought were really good. I was disappointed in one though. I grabbed Naomi Wolfe's 'Misconception', thinking that it would be stimulating like her other books, including 'The Beauty Myth'. It was stimulating, but not in the way I had anticipated. ALthough I have not read it from cover to cover, I started at the beginning and then read quickly through a few chapters. I found it very negative and almost pathetic. She sounded like such a victim in (so far) what I have read through her prenancy and the women she interviewed. All these women with terrible experiences and c-sections etc... No real empowerment. I could not relate to this book in the least, its totally foreign. I have felt completely knowledgable and in control of all decisions within this pregnancy. Information is everywhere and it comes from many directions. Its up to me, my baby and Jordan. Ultimately me and baby, but Jordan plays a very big role in the decdision making.

Our bodies were made to have babies. We just need to make sure our bodies are properly tuned up and taken care of. We have such power within our bodies. When something abnormal occurs, or there is a serious emergency, the doctors and specialists are needed. These people aren't needed for a natural function. I know there is pain but I also know that our minds are strong enough to counter that pain and deal with it. Its so simple, its all about being in touch with all aspects of your self.

Maybe I will look through the book a little more, but I don't think I will be able to relate as I did as an adolescent to Wolfe's book, 'The Beauty Myth'. Which was such a different time in my life when I felt so intensely the growing pains of my adult emergence.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Week 19

We had our first ultrasound on Thurs at Campbell River General. Wow! The baby was so much higher than I ever thought! When the technician started pushing her wand up around my ribs, we could see the head. I was totally surprised. How could it be that high up already and how could it be that big when I had barely looked pregnant two weeks ago? My belly is growing so quickly now and its finally feeling more real now. Really real! The entire area from my pubic bone to my rib cage is sticking out and things already feel really tight! My poor organs, stomach and intestines have fled towards my back and its now all baby up front.

Another new strange feeling is that I get sooo full so easily now. It feels like I have barely eaten enough to properly fill me up and around that point I feel like I have eaten for hours! A small amount of food really stuffs me up good. This means that I am eating more frequently with smaller portion sizes and anytime I forget and eat too much, I suffer!

My next midwife appointment is on Tuesday, so we should have the results of the ultrasound at that point. I wonder if Gaelyn will be surprised at the growth of the baby since my last visit? Or maybe this kind of quick growth is typical amongst first time moms?

Jordan is anxious to feel the little one's kicks, especially now since I feel them so much and so frequently. I think its just a matter of days when he will be able to finally feel movement with his own hands. We have had alot of fun in this pregnancy together - Jordan is so involved with everything and its so nice to be able to share everything with each other as time goes on. He has so much interest in every aspect of pregnancy - he brought up the topic of the perineum the other day and how he read that its not always so good to cut it and that in most water births, the perineum never tears because of how elastic it becomes from the bathwater. At this point, as long as the baby and I are strong and healthy, we will be having a home birth. Maybe some of it will include laboring in water, it would be very soothing and I love baths...

It's Thanksgiving weekend and I am glad to have some days to relax. I have felt tired the last few days and I think I am battling a cold. I am really stuffed up and abit achy all over. I'm sure it'll pass quickly.

Monday, October 02, 2006


An extra surprise for our July 15, 2006 wedding....

6 wks pregnant!!!

Feeling little **"Guido"** moving around more than ever. Jordan can't wait to feel the movements himself. I imagine that within the next couple of weeks he will be able to put his hand over my belly and feel the little one in action! Speaking of belly, my uterus has grown and moved up so quickly over the past two weeks; its almost at my belly button. Exciting times!

Spent a nice weekend relaxing, going for walks and enjoying these beautiful autumn days. It seems that since I became pregnant, I always want to walk along Rebecca Spit, which is an incredibly scenic walk. I go at least once during the week alone and then on the weekend with Jordan. I feel such goodness and closeness towards the life inside me and at the same time I am totally immersed in nature...the ocean, the mnts, the trees. Its almost as if the mix brings me to this really spiritual place, a place of total awareness, inside and out. When Jordan and I go, its the same way, just with alot of talking. We talk about the present, our future, our baby and our dreams. I am feeling so great in this pregnancy, its amazing...probably alot of crazy hormones.

These same hormones have made me feel alittle loopy at times as well. Absentmindedness and forgetful and then the newer states of total hyperness. The hyperness has added an element of such silliness recently. Jordan and I go crazy at times like we are children, running around, play fighting, laughing and just being rediclous! I am wondering what the little one is thinking as he hears his parents laughing and shreiking and all the crazy movements...
But then there are times when I am so tired! So far its been a whole array of emotions and moods, but all of it good.

**for some reason, since we found out about the pregnancy, we always call the little one Guido...don't know why, but its kind of funny and we figure its better than "it"**

Friday, September 29, 2006

Week 18

I have noticed a return of some of the fatigue I had in the earliest part of my pregnancy. So far it is not even comparable, but I can feel myselft slowing down again. It might be a result of my new job working with children. Currently I am a supervisor at a non profit childcare facility; the age group under my care is ages 6-11. The job is quite enjoyable and incredibly fullfilling; I couldn't imagine any other more appropriate work during my pregnancy! I love children and up until now, stealing my nephew and nieces for the summers and having them to myself has been enough, but now I want more!!! That probably helped us get pregnant so quickly last spring.

One subject that I have spent a great deal of time reading about and researching has been childhood vaccinations. I am very aware of both sides of the issue. I think that I understand and support both sides. I believe that vaccinations have always had their time and place and I think that they are vital in many parts of the world. I have noticed that some of the children at the centre are vaccinated and some are not...I want to ask the parents about their decisions and why they were made. For those who have taken responsibiliy for their family's healthcare, what are your ideas and what lead you to your choices?

I have gone both ways with deciding what vaccinations, if any, I will have given to my baby. At this point I can't see any real reason to vaccinate until the baby is older and we resume our travels to developing countries. Although statistically extremely low, I am aware that the possibility of side affects exists yet I also know that if certain diseases are caught, there may not be medication for a cure.

Jordan and I have discussed this issue quite abit and have not come to any permanent decisions yet. We feel that these are important decisions to make and we need to be truly knowledgable. We need to continue looking at all aspects of the vaccination spectrum.