19 Weeks

My wee tater tot is 19 weeks old young today. I remember when it was her first 19 weeks. The day I got to find out if it was blue or pink.
I drank so much water, I thought I was going to pee myself. I actually almost did on the bus ride to the clinic. When I got there and signed in I realized it was extremely busy. Not a free chair in the waiting room. Crap I just wanted to sit down and cross my legs and pray that I could hold it in. I paced in circles, I may not have the strongest kegels now. But I sure as shit did then, and they were working overtime. My bladder was so full my eyes were starting to water.
I glanced at my watch for the like the hundredth time. Crap, they were behind. I went to the desk and pleaded with the receptionist. “please” I blubbered “I really can hold it” she sighed handed me this cup and told me I could go. BUT to only fill the cup half full. Sure, sure I snatched the cup and beelined it to the washroom.
When your bladder is more than over full. It is extremely hard to stop the flow once you start it. Or so I found out anyway.
Back out to the waiting room I go. I knew there was a reason they call it that. Because I waited some more. Needless to say, I had to plead with a different receptionist to let me pee more.
Finally my turn. I laid down on the table as the technician got everything ready. I was ever so thankful for the warm jelly. Only can imagine what would have happened of it was cold.
When she started the scan, she kind of laughed at me. “your bladder is too full. You’re going to have to empty it a bit” So really I could have filled both those cups and been fine.
Back on the table. I had to crane my neck as she swooshed her little wand around my growing belly. She was pretty silent as she took the measurements and what not. Which scared me a little. Until she turned the monitor. There in the middle of the screen, was this little heart beating so fast. My heart was in my mouth, my hands hurt from gripping each other. She asked if there was anyone in the waiting room she could get for me. I said nope it’s just me. Would you like to know what it is?
I had been waiting for this question for 19 weeks. Fuck Yes I did. I already knew, but I wanted to hear it. It’s a girl she said pointing to as she said the hamburg lines. Tears were streaming down my face. It all seemed so real. To be able to see her rolling and kicking around in there.

20120123-223638.jpg
This was one of the pictures I got. It kind of creeped me out. But there she was staring back at me, and waving hello. Saying not too much longer mummy.

Back story before birth story..

I’ve decided that at some point I really need to write my birth story. Before all the finite details have disappeared into the cracks of my mind. First I should give you a bit of back story….

I’ve wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember. I knew that it was the one job that was made for me. Kids and animals always liked me more than the rest of the general public. I always was reading about pregnancy and birth, it fascinated me. Even in Jr High, my bio said that I was going to have twelve sets of twins. I was determined to have my own hockey team. Such lofty dreams I had in my teens.

At seventeen I had a bit of a set back that still haunts me to this day. I had an ectopic pregnancy. Being a fool hearty kid, I had no idea. I mean really I was seventeen, I just thought it was a really bad period. The pain was unreal, it got to the point that I thought I was going to die. I couldn’t sit or sand, I just curled into the fetal position and cried. I finally gave in and called my dad, and asked him to come take me to the hospital. It was there in the emergency room that the doctor, oh so nonchalantly said your pregnant. I was shocked, ok more than shocked. He then tried to explain to me that it wasn’t where is should be. And I would have to have surgery. What I heard was that they were going to give me an abortion, that I had no choice in.(don’t get me wrong. Everyone woman has the right to an abortion. I just couldn’t do it myself)  I don’t think I had ever cried so much in my life. My mind was all over the place. I was scared and stressed. I’d never had to have major surgery before, and I hated hospitals.

So I had the surgery, and was told after that I had almost died on the table. My blood pressure had disappeared, I think it was the fact that I was so scared. Maybe the fact that it was close to the point of bursting my tube and me hemorrhaging. Once I had come around the doctor, in his oh so wonderful bedside manner told me that I had a less than 50% chance of ever having a viable pregnancy. I would need to ovulate from the left side, as my right one is now one big scared defect. Along with my heart.

I was crushed, everything that I had wanted I was being told I might never have. It was the only job I ever wanted. From that point on I was very diligent with birth control. I was scared of having another one. Everyday it was still in the back of my mind. Would I never become a mother?

Now I don’t know if my birth story will be next.. And I’ll warn you now, it will be a long one. Well because it was haha…

 

Cord clamping

I did a lot of research on cord clamping before my daughter was born. I wanted to be as informed as possible. Most of the research was on lotus birth. I was in full agreement that why discard a part of her so quickly. This pouch of life was her buddy for 9 months. It fed her, comforted her, protected her, and gave her life.

So when she was born, we kept her tiny buddy attached. I ended up in the hospital for my birth. And this was not something that I was going to waver on. Since I had to on so many other things. My midwife had to fight for me on that one. They gave the we can’t do that speech. And we replied, we can and we are!. So needless to say we were the first people at the BC woman’s hospital to do a lotus birth. We didn’t doctor it with the herbs, it was just wrapped up in a sterile bag. And placed between her legs, and both of them were swaddled together.

I did only keep it attached for two days after her birth. It was tugging pretty good at her belly button, and making it inflamed. But the cord was so dry, I could have just cracked it off. We cut it pretty close, and by two days later the rest of it fell off. It was great that I never had to deal with the smell of rotting flesh. I remember that smell from my nieces and nephews, and was not looking forward to it. So that was another added benefit, it really does fall off quicker then having it cut right at birth. My placenta now sits in the freezer. I’m still undecided on what to do with it.

Oh I did find this neat article on waiting to cut the cord. And how it possibly prevents many health issues early on. Delayed cord clamping. If I’m ever-blessed to have another child, I will be doing a lotus birth again. I just hope more women can be informed about this and demand it.

Did you clamp right away?

My midwife experience

I knew from a very young age that if I was ever to have children. That I would want it witnessed by a midwife. I researched all the local midwives in my area, and settled on www.pomegranate-midwives.com. It is a decision that I will never forget. You are put with a team of three, mine was the red team. This consisted of Kat, Yarra, and Marijke

I still can not find words that can express my gratitude or admiration for these women. They are working in, as far as I’m concerned the noblest of professions. The job of baby catching!. From the very first meeting I was put at ease and made to feel like I was their only pregnant momma.

I’m coming up on my last appointment, and it’s almost breaking my heart. I’ve spent almost a year with these wonderful women. They have mentored me, helped me through some rough times. Gave me every resource that I could need or want. Held my hand, were a well needed shoulder for me to cry on. And the best gift of all, they handed me my daughter. They have kept me longer than most. Because they knew I’ve been a bit unstable. Which has meant the world to me. They made me feel like I wasn’t crazy, even when I’ve felt sometimes that I was.

I’m scared of not being able to call on them when I don’t know what to do. To hear that reassuring voice say you are doing fine, you can do this. Really just to see them. Because they have made me feel like family, and I consider them to be a part of my new family.

I’m forever grateful, and I will never ever forget any of them. And when Adelayde is older, she will hear the story of her birth. And the spectacular women who helped me bring her into this world.

This is my baby catcher, and not only is she holding my heart. She is a piece of my heart. I know thank you is not enough. But thank you for everything. I recommend to everyone and anyone to consider a midwife for your birth. It is something that will change your life, your heart, and your mind.

Post-partum

Everyone try’s to prepare you for how life will be, once your child is born. But as I found they don’t always prepare you for the drop in hormones. I try to be pretty well informed. So I did make sure I read up on baby blues.

I think that there is such a stigma involved in any kind of mental illnesses. That too many women don’t look for help. Or don’t even realize that what they are experiencing is post-partum depression. Or a version of PPD. Be it because they are embarrassed to admit that they are suffering. Or don’t know that what they are feeling is more then just a bad day. And this can happen up to a year after your baby is born.

I’m not going to lie, I’ve been battling with it. And yes I did, and am still trying to hide it. I’ve always been a very fiercely independent girl. Been doing it all on my own, for as long as I can remember. I knew motherhood was going to be hard. But when it’s just you, it is harder then imagined. You don’t have anyone to pass your child to when you need a break. Housework falls under the who cares category. And in my case, eating seems impossible. And it doesn’t help that I also suffer from S.A.D. And it is that time of year in Vancouver. Rain, rain, grey sky’s,and more rain. So getting out is not top of my list. But that is unfair to my daughter. So I try to get out every day even if it’s just around the block. Sometimes I cry, and for really no apparent reason. Other times I look at my daughter and I cry. But that is only because she fills my heart. Thank god that I don’t have feeling of hurting myself or her, but some do.

I want to let others know not to be ashamed, or afraid to ask for help. I was lucky enough for my midwife to catch it. She gave me some good resources www.postpartum.org The hotline number is 604-255-7999. This is manned by volunteers who they themselves have suffered through it. You can find professional help as well. If you are not into medication. Herbs can work as well. I myself take my three times daily dose of lemon balm.

And if anyone that is reading this has or is finding a ring of truth to this. How did you cope? Or you just need to talk to someone who won’t think you’re crazy. Let me know. Us mothers really are in this together.

Introducing Adelayde

Well I guess its time to introduce the reason for me starting this blog. My beautiful daughter Adelayde. It took me 40 weeks 5 days to cook this beauty up. And over 48 hours labor to literally launch her into this world. This photo was taken when she was two days old. She was my tiny little nugget, only 5lbs 6oz. It will be two months on Monday that she has become my walking heart. And I can’t imagine life without her.

Any man can be a father, but it takes something special to be a mother!

Birth photography

I was lucky enough to have a birth photographer present during my labor and delivery. This wasn’t something that had really crossed my mind. But my wonderful midwife (whom I’ll tell you about in another post) suggested it. She sent me details of this amazing woman, whom I’m pleased to call my friend Jozi.

She welcomed me into her home for a meeting to see if we meshed. The moment I walked into her home I felt at ease and relaxed. As we sipped tea she explained to me how she came about doing birth photography. And the process in which she would conduct herself. She promised me that she would be as inconspicuous as I wanted or needed her to be. And at anytime I could ask her to stop. I started to get excited to have a permanate record of the day my daughter took her first breath. She asked that I call her when I started my labor, at least when my contractions were somewhat regular. As she did like to get some pictures of that process as well.

When the time came Jozi was there, I think it was stupid o’clock in the morning. But she arrived coffee in hand and a smile on her face. I was thankful she brought not only her camera, but her sense of humor as well.

This is a blog she posted after the fact. And hell follow her too. She is pretty amazing! http://stoplookbreathe.wordpress.com/2011/09/14/warrior-woman/

Tiny steps big journey

It’s a fitting title, being a mother is a very hard rewarding job. But factor in being a first time mom, and single. And hard becomes a word in big bold letters. Each day I take tiny steps into this whole new world called mommyhood. This will be an account of what I have and will experience in my journey. Handy tidbits of knowledge, finding humor in the struggle, and to journal the life of myself and my daughter. And if I can find a way to help another, this makes it all the more worth while.