Sunday, December 28, 2008

Harper. 5 and a bit weeks.

Merry Christmas!!

Harper is still lovely, but incredibly AWAKE during daylight hours. Today, for example, she's been bright eyed and bushy tailed since about 5.30am! She's only had about an hour or two's sleep MAX during this time, poor little monkey.

It's incredbly hot here today and we have no air con, so no doubt that's added to things. She settles like a champion when wrapped but I just couldn't do it to her today :( Here's hoping tomorrow is much cooler - but I'm looking at rental properties as I type this!

Harper started smiling a few days ago, such a lovely Xmas present! She doesn't smile very much, usually when she's just woken up and they are so cute! I forgot how lovely gummy smiles can be!

Still feeding every 3 or 4 hours but it's not too bad. She's finally taking the reflux formula which is making her sleep a bit better.

I'm going to try and have her weighed this week!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Harper. 4 and a bit weeks.

Harper is doing really well. She's got the night time sorted, and will generally wake once or twice for a feed then goes straight back to sleep with minimal fuss - just the way I like it! Daytime is a different story, she's very alert theses days and will have a period during the day where she's awake for anywhere from 3-7 hours.

As much as I hate swaddling, it really works for her, the most important thing for me is to recognise her tired signs, as soon as she's over-tired, the next few hours are a write off!

No idea how big she is now, she's still fitting in her 0000 rompers but about to burst out of her 000 wondersuits. Should probably have her weighed again, but we're having lots of wet and dirty nappies so everything is going well I suppose.

We'll be off to the dr's soon, hopefully before Xmas, because I heard a clunk when I lifted her legs to change her nappy the other day, so I really think it would be a great idea to get it checked out ASAP, especially as Xmas is now 3 days away, I don't want to go over the Xmas/New Year period without having it looked at.

What else...

Isla is still being a wonderful big sister. We had a few issues with her doing wee's in her undies, we think as a reaction to Harper, but we've had no accidents since Friday and we've been using lots of positive reinforcement, seems to be doing the trick!

Isla and Harper went to their first birthday party for a gorgeous little girl called Eva on Saturday. Unfortunately, Isla didn't want to join in any of the party goings-on and chose to play on the climbing equipment for 2.5hours instead *roll eyes* and Harper just fed practically the whole time, but had a wonderful 5 hour sleep when we got home!

I can't believe my lovely little person has been with us for more than a month now, I can't remember what it was like before she arrived. I love her so much, she's such a beautiful little friend.

Here's my most favourite photo of Harper, and the 2nd shot was taken about 3 seconds after the first LOL and finally, some little toes, Harper's skin on her feet just peels all the time though :( I'll have to moisturise the little chicken first next time!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Harper. 3 weeks.

Harper is a little more unsettled these days, I'm thinking it may be reflux, she seems to cry her little eyes out when she's flat on her back, so she's been on her side a fair bit with a safety roll thing to stop her rolling around. Today has been particularly stressful, I am sitting here typing this wearing the Baby Bjorn so she can sleep upright - if only I'd thought of it hours ago, may have saved my eardrums! I'm most definitely buying a Peanut Shell now!

The little lady already has tears! Has had them for about a week or so, and it breaks my heart when she has wind pain and cries those little tears.

Harper is having bigger feeds now, yesterday she took 180mls which was massive, but generally she's having 120mls every 3-4 hours. She's stopped snacking too which is nice :)

What else...We bought her pram yesterday with a buddy board for Isla - and Isla thinks it's the best thing ever! She insisted on going for a 'ride' at the inlaws place last night when we dropped over - hopefully with this, shopping won't be the nightmare that I've been anticipating!

Nothing much else to report. No new photos - will take some with the family tomorrow.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Harper. 2 and a bit weeks.

Well, she’s still lovely!

We’re all slowly adjusting to having Harper here and starting to work out what her different cries actually mean - although generally she doesn’t cry much, only when her bottles are taking too long, or when having her nappy changed.

We had the health nurse come to visit on Tuesday of this week. Harper is doing really well, she’s put on the weight she lost after birth, and weighed in at 3650grams so 10g heavier than her birth weight. She’s 51.5cms long, so now we’re not sure how long she was when she was born, they measured her at 53cms so who knows!

The nurse did point out what her funny looking bum is - a “sacral dimple”. She said that it can be linked to Spina Bifida, but not to panic because Harper doesn’t have that, and also, there’s no hair coming out of it, and it’s complete. She said that when we visit Isla’s paediatrician next time to mention it, they may want to do an ultrasound on it to make sure everything is okay. She also said that with the hip problems on Ian’s side of the family to see whether the paed would like Harper’s hips x-rayed/ultrasound as a precaution. At the moment, they don’t have any click, but the paed at the hospital, as well as the health nurse both said that it can develop later, so we’ll be sure to get that checked out.

She loves being on her tummy up on my chest and often drifts off to sleep like that, and as much as I said there was no way I was going to rock/cuddle another baby to sleep after well over a year of having to cuddle Isla to sleep - I just love having Harper so close to me, and I love knowing that she loves to be close too.

I’ve been trying to sleep when she sleeps, but our bed is quite low to the ground and I swear it feels like my scar is ripping open when I try to get up from it, so I’ve been camped out on the lounge as much as possible, although the nights when Ian stays up with her, I have to go to bed because we have nowhere for Ian to sit otherwise…I think I’ll go to the GP tomorrow or Monday and have the wound checked out, I’m still too chicken to look at it and have a feeling it may be getting a bit gross given that I now have some completely feral stomach overhang which I never had after Isla’s birth.

Isla is still being wonderful with Harper. If she cries, Isla will either cover her ears or will come to us and say, “I think we have a problem here!” LOL The only problem, for lack of a better word, that we’re having with Isla at the moment is that she is really quite loud. Ian and I have different opinions on the matter - Ian thinks Isla needs to be quiet and should be more mindful of the fact that Harper is sleeping/feeding/what-have-you. I, on the other hand, think that Harper should just get used to Isla and the array of noises she makes, after all, most of the noise that comes from Isla is when she walks and considering she has an unusual gait because of her CP, expecting her to walk quietly seems crazy to me. One thing I do know is, I don’t want to have to have a completely quiet house in order to get Harper to sleep. So far, I’ve kept the tv at the same level etc to get her used to the noise, which is what we did with Isla too, and she managed to sleep through any noise.

I haven’t taken many more photos…but here are some that my Mum and sister have taken…

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Harper. The first week and a bit.

Harper is a lovely baby. She loves her sleep, which is wonderful, because so do I!

Harper is a snacker, so only takes about 60ish mls before falling asleep, then will sleep for an hour and a half before wanting another 60mls. We've been working on keeping her awake, or at least waking her up when she first nods off and getting her to take more.

She hasn't been weighed since we've been home, I think I'm meant to take her to the Baby Health Clinic sometime this week, although I really don't want to. I remember seeing them when Isla was a newborn, and I expressed my concerns to them about Isla's legs always being stiff, and the nurse told me that it was a "sign that she wants to walk" and that she'll walk early - when in fact, it was her Cerebral Palsy, which could have been picked up a LOT earlier had the nurse not dismissed my concerns. Maybe I'll just take her to the GP instead?

Harper doesn't like to be wrapped, she loves sleeping with her arms raised above her head, but I wrapped her up again yesterday when she wouldn't settle and she had a really, really good sleep, so we continued it last night and this morning too and she seems a but more settled.

Hmm, I have no new photos, these are from a few days ago, I will endeavour to take more today :)

Isla is a really wonderful big sister and has adjusted really well to Harper coming home (thankfully). She's scared of her pooey nappies though, but apart from that hasn't complained at all. The 2nd day we were home together she asked to have a sleep over at my Mum's place though!

She officially has middle names now, Miss Harper Joni Kate :)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Meet Harper.

So, we’re home. Well we were, Ian has already packed up Isla and Harper and has taken them to visit his parents – he’s such a proud Dad. So, I should be relaxing on the lounge, but I just wanted to come in here and jot everything down before I am completely rushed off my feet!

I’d really like to thank everyone for their well wishes, texts, emails etc, it’s meant a lot to me to feel so supported through the pregnancy and birth of Harper. Thursday was both the most wonderful and terrifying experience in my entire life all rolled into one moment.

The birth

My sister and I arrived at the hospital at 7am while Ian took Isla to kindy for the day. We went up to the Birthing Unit and sat in the triage room until theatre called for me. A little while after 8 Ian arrived, and I was sitting on the bed absolutely crapping myself, I was so scared. Just as I said to Ian and Kate, “I don’t think having a baby was a good idea” the midwife came in to say theatre were ready.

I was told I’d get the spinal in the anaesthetic bay but they wanted to do it in theatre – and even though this was my 4th operation, I’d always been too scared to open my eyes inside the operating room. It wasn’t as bad as I thought, although I did have to try really hard not to think about what all the equipment is for. I had to sit on the edge of the table with my feet hanging over, while another anaesthetist held onto my shoulders. They washed my back down with something absolutely freezing, then they gave me the local. It took a long time to do the spinal though, the anaesthetist was training someone on how to insert it, and kept saying things like "No! No! Don't bend it! No not like that!" Far out! So, it took a few attempts to get everything positioned right, and once it was in I couldn’t believe how bizarre it felt - at first it went down my bum and legs, they felt all warm, fuzzy and heavy.

Once that happened, they got me to lay down and they put the sheet up and tested me to see how well the spinal was working. They rubbed an ice-cube on my forehead then on my stomach to see whether I could feel the cold or just the sensation. After a few goes, I couldn't feel the cold from the boobs down.

Kate was then let in, armed with her iPod to distract me, as soon as she came in I started shaking uncontrollably. Kate put the earplugs in and I didn’t even know that they’d started, I thought they were still getting everything set up. I could feel a bit of pressing on my tummy, and I just assumed they were feeling the position of the baby, so I was surprised that when the first song finished and I heard Kate saying, “she’s almost here!”. I felt a big push on my tummy, then I felt a lot lighter, then I heard her little screams!

One of the theatre staff took my camera and took some photo’s of her arrival, but she flicked the setting to video camera, so I have some pretty gory footage of the inside of me, but the audio is good, all I can hear is Harper crying, Kate crying and me crying and asking “is she okay?”, "Is it a girl" and "She's really big!". The moment I laid eyes on her, the iPod played “Beautiful Girl” by INXS although technically, she was born while I listened to Fall Out Boy!

Kate was able to trim the cord and took lots of photos for me. The baby was all wrapped up and I was able to give her a few kisses and strokes on the forehead before she went off to be weighed and measured. I wished she had stayed in there with me a little longer. I also wish I was able to move my right arm to be able to see her properly.

After she was taken, Kate was supposed to go with her, but she refused and stayed with me for the rest of the operation, and I'm so glad that she did. One of the theatre staff was insisting that she leave, but we'd already asked someone else who said it was okay, so Ian waited in the nursery with her. I was still shaking uncontrollably and when I could sense that they had a tray on my tummy that they were putting their clamps etc into I started to feel really sick, but one quick injection and I was okay. The worst part of it all was I had the worst case of dry mouth of my entire life, I couldn't swallow anything and it was making me feel awful!

It wasn't long until everything was finished and I went to recovery for what was meant to be 30 minutes. They had to get me off the operating table (obviously!) and they had to roll me from one side to the other and I was convinced that I was going to fall on the floor, I kept pleading with them, "Please don't let me fall!". So, off to recovery, I couldn’t stop shaking, so I stayed there for over 2 hours. It was really awful, all I wanted was to see Ian and the baby, but I had to stay until the shakes had gone. They loaded me up with heated blankets (I think I had 5 in the end) and made me do deep breathing exercises, but nothing worked. All my obs were normal, so after about 2 hours I was allowed to go but I still had the shakes when I got to my room. I had to wait about 20 minutes before the nurse went to find Ian and Harper, then I was allowed to have all the cuddles I could!

Harper Joni Kate

Born at 9.34am

Weight: 8lb

Length: 53cm

HC: 36cms

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

39 weeks.

Starting to freak out slightly!

I don't remember if I posted an update after my last Resident appointment on Friday (38+3wks) so I'll give you a rundown on that.

:: Appointment was for 9.15. I got there at 9, i left just after 12. Thank god Isla was a good girl.

I saw the same idiotic Dr as last time. She checked the swelling in my feet but said it was okay, they only worry if you can leave an indentation in your legs/feet which I can of an evening. She said as long as the swelling goes away when I put my feet up then not to worry about it, and it will continue (probably get worse) until little sister gets here. Have only put on 550g since last week, although I really should weigh myself after I go to the toilet and not before!!

I told her that I tried to book into the anaesthetic clinic last week but I didn't have the right forms, so she gave me the forms for my GP to fill in and told me to see the ladies at the desk and they'll book me in. I go and see the ladies, the woman takes one look at the forms the Dr just gave me and said, "you have to go back and get these filled out by the doctor before I can book you in, you don't even have a booking date for the c-section". So, I told her that I was booked for the 20th and she said to get the Dr to write it in.

So, after waiting over an hour to see the Dr, I then had to go back and wait to see her again (it was now 11.15) she filled in the forms, then said that she couldn't fill them in because she's a resident, I had to have a registrar or LMO to sign/fill them in. BLOODY HELL. I got moved to another clinic room to wait for another Dr to come in and fill out all the forms. In the meantime, Jane, the nice midwife saw me in the corridor looking less than impressed, so she called the theatre rooms and double checked my booking for Thursday - and it's all in there - 8am.
The next Dr came and filled in the forms, she was the Dr who booked me in again for the 20th anyway, as soon as she saw my name she knew all about what had happened, although still couldn't explain why I'd been taken off in the first place.
I'm booked in to the Pre-admission Anaesthetic Review Clinic for Tuesday the 18th at 2.30pm. I have no idea how long it takes or what's involved, but we'll find out on Tuesday.

The Dr asked whether I wanted a General, Epidural or Spinal, and I said Spinal. She thinks that will be the best option, even though I really have no idea, I just prefer 2 injections (a local, then the spinal) to having the epidural catheter inserted. Someone remind me to speak to the anaesthetist about that ::

So that was a massive pain in the arse. I went to the GP on Monday to have the forms filled out, but after sitting for nearly 2 hours in their waiting room, I couldn't be bothered going to the hospital to hand in the forms and took them with me yesterday when I had the anaesthetic clinic.
Pre-Admission Clinic: Was really good. Kate came with me, bless her cotton socks, I'd be lost without her! We had a lengthy wait again, but at least they warned us about it this time. We got there around 2.30 for the appointment and left after 5 - again! The anaesthetist was SO lovely, I am so bummed that she's not working TOMORROW (OMG tomorrow!) but she assured me that the man who will be there with me is lovely too!

I am allowed to take in an iPod - Yippee! The more distractions the better! She agreed that a spinal is the way to go, but did warn me about a) shaking b) nausea and vomiting and c) headaches. She also said that once you've decided to go for a spinal you are completely awake, they can't give me any of those magical drugs that take you away to la-la land because they'll affect the baby - but if I feel like I'm not coping I can have a General at any stage (unless of course there is only about 5 minutes left). She said that I'll have the spinal put in in the anaesthetic bay not in the theatre which is a MASSIVE relief to me, even though this will be my fourth surgery I've never seen the inside of an operating room, so the prospect of having to sit on an operating table while they did the spinal has been something I have been dreading. Unfortunately, she doesn't think that Kate will be able to be with me while that's being inserted, but fingers crossed I'll be a.o.k.
She said that the Dr's are really quite fast at c-sections at this hospital and it would probably be all over and done with in about 30-45 minutes. Wow. She said that once the baby is out, she'll be wrapped up and given to me for cuddles, then while I'm being stitched etc she'll go to the birthing unit to be weighed and cleaned up properly and given the vitamin K shot etc. They said Kate will go with her to have all that done and I'll meet them back in the BU after I've spent about 30 minutes in recovery - BUT, Ian will be waiting out in the waiting room while we're in theatre, so hopefully he'll go with the baby to get weighed etc and Kate can stay with me for a while longer, I think the longer I'm left on my own, the more likely I am to freak out. We'll see anyway.
As we were leaving the pre-admission clinic, I thought I probably should hand in my admission papers, given that the actual birth would be less than 48 hours away. Imagine our surprise when I hand the forms to the lady at the desk and she tells me that there are "lots of pages missing". GAH! I explained that the Dr's in the antenatal clinc filled some forms out, ripped them out and told me to get the rest filled in by the GP. The lady told me to take the forms to the antenatal clinic because they needed them not her, and they were closed! I may never have this baby!

Isla is getting super excited about her baby sister arriving. We told her that she'll be here on Thursday but she doesn't really get what Thursday is unless we say today is Thursday, so she'll be off to kindy first thing in the morning and Ian will collect her in the afternoon and bring her in to meet her little sister! I can't wait for that moment, I get all teary just thinking about it. Isla keeps telling me how much she loves her baby sister already, I just hope the love continues when we come home.

I'm sad that I'll be in hospital away from Isla for so long, somewhere between 3-5 days. I want to stay as long as possible so that I have the help of the midwives etc, I don't want to over-do anything by coming home early, I just hope I can cope being away from Isla for so long - even though she'll spend lots of time visiting, it just wont be the same :(
I have really no clothes for this little girl if she's less than a 000! Isla's 00000's absolutely swam on her when she was born, although she was 5 weeks early, so that makes sense. I have a box in the garage of her little stuff but I can't find it anywhere and haven't really been bothered going to the shops to buy little things for her, so Ian may be forced to go clothes shopping - I shudder to think what he'll come home with, although I really should just tell him wondersuits, how wrong can he go??
Starting to crap myself, I was awake from 5am this morning thinking, "this time tomorrow..." Cross your fingers that I get some rest tonight (doubtful after I fell asleep for 3 hours this afternoon) and I can relax and enjoy this experience...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

38 weeks.

I am REALLY feeling it now. Last night it was well after 3am by the time I got to sleep. Swollen feet, sore back and awfully painful (but irregular) Braxton Hicks had me on the lounge watching bloody infomercials for hours on end, and now, I want the Windsor Pilates Circle thing and Pro-active!!

I tried to be organised this morning and put on a load of washing as soon as I woke up, it's still sitting in the washing machine some 5 hours later, and the clothes I hung out on Sunday are still on the line too. I really do have good intentions on getting it all done, it's just the following though that I struggle with LOL.

Isla has been really good, I am really very lucky that she's been so sweet and lovely and not a complete and utter feral. ian goes on holidays at the end of this week, with the baby scheduled to come on the 20th, although I will be calling the hospital tonight just to confirm and see if someone can give me a straight answer on the anaesthesia clinic/pre-admission clinic and paperwork. I just want to have everything sorted out ASAP so I can relax a little.

I've spent the morning searching on various childbirth things, not sure why, I've made up my mind, but I'm just so curious to know more, but I don't want to know too much! It's so hard to be one of those people who freaks out at the mere mention of anything medical, yet being faced with being awake for a major surgery - I'm trying to find a balance between knowing enough and knowing too much. Easier said than done.

I have lots of questions to ask, but I don't know if a) I'll get the chance to actually ask them (will I go into labour before my appointments?) and b) whether anyone will be able to answer them for me, or will it simply be a case of passing the buck a-la last Friday's appointment.

Things I want to know:

:: Can I have music/ipod in with me so I don't hear all that surgical stuff?

:: Can the baby stay with me (along with my husband) in recovery?

:: Can the baby have all the health checks/weighing etc done with me there rather than while I'm in recovery?

:: What's the difference between a spinal block and an epidural, and which one would be best for me?

:: What sort of pain relief will I be offered after the birth?

:: What happens if I have a MAJOR freak out in the theatre? - a very real possibility!

:: Can someone PLEASE look at my wobbly tummy and ensure that I don't have some feral skin apron after the birth - something I am very worried about.

That's all I can think of for now, I know my lovely sister Kate (who will be accompanying me for the birth) has some questions too, I should really call her and see what they are so I can ask on her behalf.

Just before I go to lay on the lounge for the umpteenth time today, I want to say a very, very BIG thank-you to my wonderful girls for all their support and understanding of my decision for an elective c-section. You girls are my rock!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Registrar Visit.

The Dr I saw was terrible, it seemed like she had absolutely no idea what she was doing, which was a bit un-nerving. She pumped up my BP thing 3 times, then seemed to make up the actual BP that she wrote on my card. So once we'd finished there, Kate and I went to the medical centre that has an automated one and it was pretty close to what she'd written on my card.
I tested positive to Strep B, so it's a good thing I'm having a c-section. She said it doesn't mean I have it, I could just be a carrier, but it can be passed on to the baby through a vaginal delivery, so c-section it is.
BUT there was nothing written in my notes about a c-section on the 20th, and I saw the note where my c-section was canned for the 19th. It said, "No c-section booked for 19th therefore c-section not needed". Pretty interesting. I told her I was booked in for a c-section on the 20th and that they said that I would have to go to an anaesthesia clinic the week before-hand. She said that they usually make the bookings at the same time, so they should have told me when I had to go to the clinic, just to ask the midwives at the front desk - she really had no clue what was going on.
So, I asked the midwife out the front and she asked me for my admission papers - which I don't have. She said that I need to have the admission papers and have them signed by a GP and returned before I could go to the anaesthesia clinic or the pre-admission clinic. I told her I don't have them, and she told me to ask them for them at next weeks weekly visit, which is on next Friday - talk about cutting it fine. The Dr said that the anaesthesia clinic would probably be on the 18th! Bloody hell.
I think I might just call them in tears next week and ask someone to sort it all out for me - no one seems willing to help me get everything organised at all - it's very stressful.

A trip to the hospital.

I woke up on Tuesday morning with some pretty feral looking bright green discharge in my undies. Charming.

In a panic (anything green has to be bad - right?) I called Ian and asked him to come home from work and take me to the hospital. I then called the Birthing Unit and explained to them the green stuff, they told me to "pop on a pad and come on in!". She said it could be meconium in my amniotic fluid (insert freak out here) or it could be some sort of infection. Best to go in and be checked out for certain.

So, Mum came over to mind Isla and Ian and I went off to the Birthing Unit. Turns out what I consider to be green (we're talking the colour of green cordial here) isn't what they consider to be green, so there was no need to worry at all. Phew!

They put me on the CTG for a while, which brought back lots of memories from being in hospital with Isla, I would spend half an hour two or three times a day strapped to a CTG checking out my little munchkin. Thankfully the trace was fine, one very happy baby in there :)

The Dr, who was SO lovely, wanted to do a speculum (ugh!) but couldn't. I just couldn't relax enough for it to happen, so after a few attempts, he said not to worry, that he couldn't see any obvious amniotic fluid leaking, and that he thinks it could just be an infection. Midwife did the swab for Strep B and I was allowed to go home.

BUT, the Dr made a comment before we left, "I see you canceled your c-section on the 19th" and asked if I had decided on a VBAC. I couldn't believe it! I told them that I had definitely NOT canceled and that I will be having the c-section as planned, thank-you-very-much. I was so upset, it had taken quite a lot for me to a) reach the decision of having the c-section, and b) being at peace with it, so the fact I'd been taken off the list (after being on it for 3 weeks, I might add!) really pissed me off!

The midwife ducked out to check the list, and surprise!! They'd completely booked out my day!! And the days either side of it! I asked what was going to happen, they said that they'd have to either "see if they can fit me in or bump someone from the list". Honestly. The midwife said to call her back the next day and see what she could work out for me in the meantime, or I could wait until Friday and discuss it with the Registrar.

I called on Wednesday, and they said that I was booked in for the 20th - a Thursday, which is significant because they only do elective c-sections on Wednesdays and Fridays. They said to be at the hospital at 7am, I'm first on the list and barring any emergencies, I will be in theatre at 8am.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

37 weeks.

37 weeks!!!!

A baby is considered full-term if born any time after 37 weeks!


There are no midwife appointments this week, so I will be seeing a Registrar on Friday morning with Kate. I'll be informing them of my decision to go with an elective c-section.

It's something I've thought long and hard about and I'm glad to say that so far, the people I've told have been supportive. I composed an email to send to family & friends about my reasons etc, I'll post it at the end here too.

My feet swell every day. Saturday I had to ask my Mum to go to the shops and buy me some new slippers because I couldn't get my feet into any shoes! My lovely inlaws are also going to put some Xmas presents on layby for me today because it's all too hard for me to get to the shops these days (particularly with Isla in tow) so I only have 1 person to buy for now (and the IL's too, but I think I know exactly what I'm getting them). Feels good to know Xmas is sorted!

It's 9.39am and I've already been up for 5 hours and I'd really like to go back to bed, but Isla has only been awake for about an hour or so, so the chances of her going back to sleep are non-existant!

Anyway, this is my lengthy email:

I've made up my mind what I'm planning on doing with the birth of this baby. I'm just letting you know so that we're all on the same page.

I've decided to go ahead and have the elective c-section. There's a few reasons why I'm choosing to have this, and I'll share them with you so that you can understand and hopefully support my decision.

The main reason I was originally swayed by a c-section was because of Isla's special needs. I am particularly terrified of something/anything going wrong with a natural delivery, specifically, foetal distress, the cord being wrapped around the baby's neck etc. For me, the choice to have a c-section was set in stone last night when I found this piece of information, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine in December 2004. It's the results of 46000 women attempting a VBAC (vaginal birth after caesarean section)

Among infants whose mothers chose this "trial of labour," the frequency of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) - another serious complication-was increased. While only 12 cases of HIE occurred with "trial of labour" cases, there were no cases among women who had elected to have a repeat caesarean delivery. Seven of 12 cases of HIE, including two neonatal deaths, followed uterine rupture. Maternal morbidity, endometritis and blood transfusion were all more likely among women who chose VBAC than among those who chose repeat caesarean delivery”

HIE = newborn brain injury due to lack of oxygen

The specific risk is 1 in 2000, which I know is a slight risk, but given that I already have a child that has HIE (specifically Periventricular Leukomalacia) the risk is just too great for me to willingly take just so I can have a particular kind of birth. Part of me is sad that I won’t be able to experience a “natural” birth, but I have to put the well-being of the baby before my needs. I know that if there’s a 1 in 2000 chance that something will go wrong, then there’s a 1999 in 2000 chance that everything will be fine but still, I am confident in my choice. I also know that any birth resulting in a healthy baby is successful and that’s what my focus will be.

I spoke about this with the Dr at the High Risk Clinic, and she is happy to support my choice and while Bankstown Hospital actually has the lowest c-section rate of any hospital in NSW, she said, it’s not up to her to single-handedly lower the Country's c-section rate, so if I want one, I can have one. I know that the Birthing Unit is co-located with the operating theatres (I studied the floor map on Tuesday night) it is literally across the corridor, but, what if something goes wrong and all the theatres are booked? I would never be able to forgive myself. The Dr did say that they could get me into theatre within 5 minutes and have the baby out within 1 minute - assuming that there’s a free theatre. I also know that if the brain becomes compromised if it is starved of oxygen for more than 11 minutes.

There are also other limitations surrounding attempting a VBAC that have influenced my decision.

:: I would need to go into spontaneous labour by 41+3wks otherwise I’d have to have a c/s.

:: I would have to make very specific progress in labour, ie I would have to dilate 1cm per hour, they aren’t keen on giving syntocin to help speed things up, so failure to progress would mean a c/s.

:: If there’s staining in the amniotic fluid , I will be taken for a c/s straight away.

:: If there’s any sign of foetal distress, I will have a c/s straight away.

So, that’s where we are at. Should I go into labour on my own, I need to ring the birthing unit and tell them I’m scheduled and they’ll ask me to come in and I’ll be slotted into that day’s Caesars. I am hoping that I will be able to have the c-section before going in to labour as I will have enough recovering to do from the surgery, but we'll wait and see what happens.

I am hoping to have either a epidural or spinal block, but I will discuss that with the Anaesthetist at the clinic in the coming weeks. Kate will be coming with me for the c-section because Ian doesn't feel he'll be able to cope inside the operating theatre, and I respect his decision. He will spend time one-on-one with the baby when I am in recovery.

A few people said to me the other day “you’re mad for having a c-section” and you may feel that way too, but I ask that nobody judge my decision, because it ultimately is my decision, which I have made based on a lot of research. If you feel the same as the people above, I ask that you do not bring it up with me, I’m not interested in being converted to the natural birth camp or being judged, I would prefer to have the support of family and friends.

I also ask that you are patient with us after the birth, in terms of visiting us and us visiting other people. We’ll contact you when we’re ready for visitors as we want to spend some family time together when the baby arrives, so we can all adjust to our new arrival, Isla particularly. Similarly, with visiting people so they can meet the baby, we would like to take our time to settle in to home life, especially as I will be in hospital for 5 days.


Al & Ian

Monday, October 27, 2008

36 weeks.

Cankles - check!

Belly button gone - check!

Exhausted - check!

Insomnia - check!

Feeling pretty average at the moment, the last two days I've needed to have Nana-naps to see me through to the afternoon! Tummy has been feeling really tight and sore, and the baby movements are hurting me!

Still up in the air about how I will birth this baby. I am leaning towards the c-section, although I kind of think, if things happen before then, I'll just go with the flow and see what happens. Midwife appointment tomorrow night, then I go weekly from then on, which is a bit exciting, so I'll have a chat with her and see what she thinks is the best thing to do.

Last night was awful, I couldn't get comfortable no matter what I tried. Ian ended up sitting on the lounge with me around 2am rubbing my back while I sat and cried. I feel awful for being upset at being uncomfortable because I know there are so many people who would give anything to be in my position, but bloody hell, it's hard!

I wonder if it's psychological, I haven't been "this" pregnant before, so I wonder if it's just my mind overplaying everything, you know, like I know the baby would be okay if she were born now, just like Isla was, while I know every day inside is better, part of me feels like I'd like her out right now!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

35 weeks.

Sleep - what is it again?? I've been finding it harder and harder to actually get any sleep lately, last night in particular - although that was Isla's constant waking/needing to go to the toilet - more than anything else. It seems I can sleep well for perhaps 2 hours, anything more than that is met with constant tossing and turning, hip pain, reflux, Isla, Ian snoring, Ian's alarm, the dog howling...the list is never ending.

Feeling titanic at the moment. Lots of trips to the toilet, nothing really fitting me clothes-wise except for dresses and leggings.

Have half-heartedly packed a hospital bag - it currently consists of maternity pads and toilet paper - oh and all the clothes I'm taking in for the baby, and a couple of wraps - but that's it. Should pull my finger out, but I am way.too.tired.

Looked at my ticker. It says 35wks, 35days to go!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Braxton Hicks or...???

Wow, 3 posts in a week!

Yesterday I had the most awful (what I assume were) BH's.

They started around 4pm while I was shopping and lasted until 10.30pm last night. They didn't ease off or go away during that time, and the pain was not only in my tummy but around my back as well.

Having a shower made no difference.

Since waking up this morning, I've been feeling 'weird' but I can't explain how. Like sick, but not sick if that makes sense? I've had the BH's off and on this morning (nothing regular though)

A little concerned because the OB told me on Tuesday that the baby is engaged already, and that they're not sure what a normal pregnancy is for me, I had pre-term labour from about 31-32wks with Isla.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

High Risk Appointment.

So I was quietly crapping myself about this appointment, last time I didn't find the OB particularly friendly and I was scheduled to see her again yesterday.

I posted this on a forum about my mindset leading up to the birth of this baby...

"I've spoken to the OB at my High Risk Clinic about my fear/apprehension regarding the birth of this baby but she essentially brushed me aside, saying "all mother's have fear associated with the birth of their child".

The OB wants me to try for a VBAC and I am the first to admit that I would dearly love to experience a vaginal birth, but I am literally terrified of the whole thought of something going wrong . Specifically, I'm terrified of the baby being born with the cord wrapped around it's neck, or going into distress and not breathing when it's born. It keeps me awake at night.

Isla was born 5wks early via c-section because I lost too much blood during my pregnancy which caused PVL (Periventricular Leukomalacia) which means she has brain damage caused from the lack of oxygen to her brain while I was bleeding.

The idea of having a c-section doesn't phase me, although I'd rather not have a) major abdominal surgery and b) the longer recovery associated with it, particularly having Isla to look after - the whole no lifting etc would be practically impossible. And, I should add, that I know that having a c-section doesn't guarantee a healthy baby etc.

I've tried talking it over with my mother, who seems to think that I only want to have a c-section because I'm afraid of the pain or labour and birth which is completely untrue.

Is it wrong to even contemplate having a c-section just to ease my fears?"

So for the past 10ish weeks since my last High Risk appointment, I've found myself swaying between desperately wanting a VBAC and COMPLETELY freaking out about something going wrong and wanting a c-section. So here's a run down of what happened at my appointment yesterday.

BP = 120/70 perfect - hooray!
Baby is engaged - OB says head is locked in there and the only way she'll move now is out! OMG
Excess fluid not an issue - ultrasound yesterday showed that baby was touching the placenta and walls of the uterus, so not completely suspended in fluid. Fundal height only 2cms ahead, so measuring 36wks.
Since being weighed at 7wks pregnant, I've only gained 3.5kgs - although I did lose 5kgs between weeks 7-12 so about 7ish kg gain. Very happy! Should have roughly gained 12kgs by this stage.
Then OB asked if I've thought about the birth and asked whether I'd made a decision as to what I want to do. I was ready for the whole VBAC push but she sat and listened to everything I had to say and was very supportive of what I want and need from her and the hospital.

My questions to her:

ME: "I keep swaying between wanting a VBAC and wanting a c-section, purely because I am scared of something happening to the baby during the birth, what would you suggest for someone like me who already has a child with special needs?"

OB: "Ultimately it's up to you, if you feel more comfortable with having an elective C-Section then I am happy for you to have that. You will find that if you want to attempt a VBAC you will have a lot of support from the Midwives. We will do everything we can for you, whatever you decide. 2/3 of women who attempt a VBAC are successful, but 1/3 require another c-section for a number of reasons. Of that 1/3, 1/300 will have something go wrong, like uterine rupture".

ME: "If I decide to try for a VBAC, will there be limitations to it?"

OB: "Yes, most importantly you must be making progress with your labour, ideally, 1cm per hour. If your labour slows, I would consider using syntocin, but I would prefer not to. You may end up needing a c-section if labour does not progress. If there is meconium in the waters when they're broken, then we'll do a c-section. If there is any sign of foetal distress, we'll do a c-section"

ME: "Will I be strapped to the CTG the whole time and have to stay in bed?"

OB: "The baby will be monitored continuously, but we can allow you to walk around and still be monitored"

ME: "I have heard that some hospitals don't allow you to have certain types of pain relief, like an epidural, for a VBAC because you wouldn't be aware of the pain of uterine rupture, is this true?"

OB: "That's very outdated information. You can have any sort of pain relief that you would like. Waiting for pain as an indicator of uterine rupture can often be too late".

ME: "If I do decide that I would prefer to have a c-section, how many weeks would I be when I'm delivered?"

OB: "39 weeks or as close to it as we can get. There are specific days for c-sections, Wednesdays and Friday" and she picked up the phone and booked me in. She also said, "we can easily delete you off the list if you don't want a c-section".

ME: "If I attempt a VBAC, how far away from the theatres am I if something goes wrong?"

OB: "Practically across the corridor. The hospital was set up so that we're closely located to the theatres. If something were to go wrong, we'd be able to have you there very quickly, and just hope that there's a theatre available, or that all the operations in progress are more than 1/2 way through so we wouldn't have to wait very long".

ME: "If I decide I want to attempt a VBAC, and go into labour on my own, then have a complete mental breakdown or freak out, can I have a c-section?!"

OB: "Yes, you can change your mind at any time, but you need to be aware that just because you ask for a c-section, doesn't mean we'll be able to whisk you in for one straight away, provided there's no signs of distress etc, you'll have to wait until a spot is available"

She explained that I will have a pre-admission appointment with the anaesthetic team and there'll be some sort of tour where I'd get to see where everything happens to prepare me. She also explained what will go on on the day of the c-section - that they'll insert the anaesthesia, put in the catheter, get the baby out within 1-5 minutes of starting the op. I'll be the first to have contact with the baby before she's taken away by the midwives to be checked and rugged up. Hubby (or in my case, sister) will be allowed to hold the baby while I'm being stitched up, which will take from 15-30 minutes. Baby will go to the ward with hubby while I'm being stitched up and will be weighed/measured/injected etc (although I am going to ask that they wait for me to come back into the ward before they do this, or if it can be done in the theatre). I'll spend about 30 minutes in recovery then I'll be allowed up on to the ward.

So I've walked away from the appointment yesterday with new-found confidence in my OB and the protocol of the hospital. I'm really happy that she's supporting and respecting my decisions. I still have no idea which way it will go, but I'm going to attempt to keep an open mind and try to research as much as I can about both labour and vaginal births as well as c-sections. OB agreed with me that any hang-ups I have going in to the birth aren't ideal and could hinder progress.

Monday, October 13, 2008

34 weeks.

I've taken to sleeping on the lounge, it seems to be the only way I can get comfortable with all the hip pain that I'm getting of a night time. I remember having it with Isla too, but not this bad.

Reflux is back, not too badly so far, touch wood. Hoping it stays this mild or buggers off for good!

It's a bit daunting to think that I'm 34weeks already, I start to panic, thinking I only made it to 35+2 with Isla, so it's weird to think that last time I was at this point I was 9 days away from being a Mummy!

Ian and I have finally decided on a name, and it appears everyone hates it - although I suspect they'll like the middle names (and will probably suggest that I swap the names around). It saddens me a little to know that everyone has turned their nose up at it, but then again, it's our baby, so we should call her what we want and stuff what everyone else thinks. I'll just have to be ready once she's in our arms and named that when people say, "oh I don't like that name" and say, "well I don't like the names of your children either" lol

Hating this heat at the moment, last time I was in the air conditioned comfort of a hospital bed, so I never really had to experience humidity and heat while pregnant. It's no fun at all! Although I'd rather be hot and bothered than on bed rest and bleeding profusely!

High Risk appointment is tomorrow. I need to spend today reading up on some questions and things to ask the OB considering it will be the last time I see her. She's very keen for a VBAC but I'm so undecided, I just don't want to risk anything happening to the baby, considering I've already one child with a disability, if anything were to happen, I'd never be able to forgive myself.

We'll see what happens anyway.

Friday, October 10, 2008

33 weeks.

4 sleeps until the High Risk appointment. I have a feeling I'll be sitting in the hospital waiting for hours to see the VMO only to be told they're all in theatre and the appointments will be cancelled. It happened when I was pregnant with Isla, and hasn't happened to me yet, so given this is my last high risk appointment, I'm bracing myself for it.

I've had a bit of a crap-tacular week, I've been feeling really emotional, particularly last weekend and yesterday, I'll put it down to pregnancy hormones and an inability to stand up for myself. Oh, and I'll add sleep deprivation to the list of possible culprits. Still only managing a few hours, still telling myself it's all going to prepare me for those early morning feeds when the little one arrives, but it doesn't really make it much easier to deal with!

Here's a belly pic from yesterday 33+3wks. Yes, I know, I am titanic.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

32 weeks.

Very little to report this week.

Not feeling as gigantic as before, I guess 5 days of gastro has some benefits! Sleeping is trouble, I can usually only manage 3 hours of solid sleep before waking up and just not being able to doze off again - I suppose I should really view this as practice for a newborn.

All pink items have been washed, I've borrowed 2 bags from my Mum to use in the hospital.

Short and sweet this week!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

31 weeks.

Gastro. Enough said really. Both Ian and I were struck down with it. Isla managed to escape it - thankfully.

I had another ultrasound yesterday, all went well, although I was terrified of throwing up everywhere, luckily I was at home when the sickness struck!

Baby is doing well, 3 days ahead of dates, but the sonographer says that anything within 7 days either side is considered normal. Heartbeat was 110 on first check, but he checked again as it was a little low and it was up to 126bpm. Head is down (still) and baby weighs approximately 1.8kgs already - which is 4lbs. I had an ultrasound at the same stage with Isla's pregnancy and she was 4lb 4oz, so right on with her sister.

I have some excess amniotic fluid, not sure what units it's measured in, but apparently the normal range is 11-12 and I have 20. He said it's not really a problem until it gets to about 26 (units) and that they'll just keep and eye on my fundal height at each antenatal appointment. I guess it explains why I feel so massive!

In other news, my placenta has moved 11.5cms away from the cervix, so I am able to try for a vaginal birth - although I am having mixed emotions about it all. Will have to do some research and discuss it with the OB at the High Risk appointment in a few weeks time. Apparently the OB and I are going to nut out a birth plan at that appointment so we'll see what happens.

Looks like I can remove the tags from the pink clohtes I've bought, the sonographer yesterday said he really doesn't like telling people that they're having girls without seeing the presence of labia and a uterus, and he was so lovely, he spent a lot of time checking to see those very things, and he did!! So, another pinky :) She's awfully cute!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Baby clothes.

Is there anything cuter in the world? Okay, perhaps the baby that actually wears them, but still, I love baby clothes SO much.

I picked up a layby full of cuddly newborn bits and pieces today, and made a trek to the supermarket to find some lovely eco-friendly washing powder to wash everything ready to be packed into the hospital bag - how sad am I!?!

I've gone through the bits and pieces that I have and have picked the most gender neutral stuff to wash first, I'll see what the ultrasound tech says on Monday at my scan, I don't want to pack everything pink just in case! I might just wash a few things and pack them separately for Ian/Mum/whoever to bring in should the baby still be a wee pinky :)

Nothing much to buy clothes-wise now, just socks and some more wondersuits for sleeping, oh and a few more singlets. Still have to go through Isla's baby clothes to see what I can re-use out of there too.

Very exciting!

I have absolutely nothing for me in the hospital though, I have one nighty that I love but I'm reluctant to take because I don't particularly want it covered in blood/vomit/iodine/what-have-you... I do have plenty of socks though, and slippers, so the situation isn't completely hopeless just yet.

I'm thinking about hiring one of those bassinette thingys that they have at the hospital, you know, the plastic baby tub thingy on wheels that the newborns sleep in. It'd save us putting up the cot when there's really no room for it anyway, and they're on wheels so I could move bub wherever is most quiet, cool etc. And, it doubles as a bath, which we don't have right now either. Must make that call tomorrow.

It's all becomming more real now.

Midwife check up last night went well, although she was super fast. I would have been there for about 5 minutes max. Good news is that my BP is back to normal, perfect in fact. Only one + protein now, which I've had all the way through. Baby is head down now, which explains why my belly has completely changed shape over the past week. No idea about my fundal height, she didn't measure it, but heartbeat is perfect :)

Monday, September 15, 2008

30 weeks.

How exciting, 30 weeks. 10 to go - possibly only 8 if I have a c-section!

Both Isla and I were sick last night with some feral gastro type bug. I've only managed cruskits today, although she seems fine which is a relief. Hopefully it'll be completely out of our system by tomorrow, Isla will be put into plasters up to her knees for 3 weeks :(

Midwife called last week, the urine sample came back all clear which is a relief. I didn't cancel the doubled up appointments I had, and considering the week I've had with the flu and gastro, I'm pretty keen to visit her tomorrow night and have a chat and hear the baby's beautiful heart beat again.

Only 1 week left until the ultrasound. Can't wait.

Am wondering at what stage I should have a hospital bag packed, considering Isla was 5 weeks early and I was already in hospital at this stage of my pregnancy with her, I never had the opportunity to pack anything (although people brought in practically everything I owned, because on my day of discharge, it took 3 trips to the car just to load all my crap!). Also wondering what stage to install the new carseat, when to wash all the baby clothes I have ready and waiting... I suppose I should also find where I (read: Ian) put the cot bolts when we moved last time, and buy a new cot mattress. Gah, and here I thought I was organised!

Hopefully the hospital will give me some sort of list of what to pack too. I have a feeling they may do cloth nappies there, there was a snappi on the newborn bed in the BU - will check that out tomorrow. We bought our first pack of newborn nappies on the weekend - it's starting to feel real!

Have been wondering how we'll cope with a new addition, last time we had no support from family, friends etc and Ian had just started a new job, and we moved when Isla was about 8 weeks old (and this is the plan again this time too). Fingers crossed it will be smoother sailing this time.

Here's a belly shot from Thursday, the only one I've really taken (okay, I admit, the only one I haven't deleted!)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

29 weeks.

Fact. Heartburn is the devil. Coupled with the fact that I really only want to drink juice right now, it's a terrible combination.

Still haven't heard back from the hospital about my urine test, I suppose no news really is good news?? I should just call them, I have 2 appointments scheduled that need changing, I'm just not sure whether I call the BU or the MWC? One way to find out I suppose.

Baby is moving a LOT more now, and I'm having really frequent Braxton Hicks too, some are actually quite painful :(

We had a good Father's Day, Isla wanted to go to the Park and play on the swings, so that's what we did. Have some photo's - will post them on her website:

Thursday, September 4, 2008

28 weeks.

Only 12 to go! Hello 3rd trimester!

GCT was on Thursday, wasn't as bad as I remembered it being, although this time the drink was carbonated and cold, so that's a plus! Get the results today.

Midwife appointment tonight, I think this time to talk abut everything all the emotion etc that I have. The other night I lay in bed crying because I am already confronted by how different this baby will be from Isla. It will be so strange to have a baby that doesn't have stiff legs or that can sit properly etc etc. I'm not sure how I'll deal with it - will it make me feel differently towards it - or towards Isla for that matter? :(

Massive hip pain again. Seems to be more on my right hand side although it doesn't matter how I lay because it throbs all night long.

Will update again after tonight's appointment.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Update from appointment.

Appointment itself went well - it was with the same midwife again. This time only one labouring woman which freaked me a little but not too much. Fundal height 29cms[1cm ahead] and baby in breech position but lots of time to turn.

++ Protein in my urine and slightly elevated blood pressure saw me take a urine sample to the hospital today. Results will come back on Friday - midwife will call me - nt sure what will happen. She's checking fr Pre-Eclampsia - although she didn't say it.

Have booked in my scan which was meant t be at 34 weeks but I'll be a smidge over 31 weeks which the lady at the desk said was fine. September 22nd at 11am. Can't wait to see the baby again - and double check it's still a girl!!

Have to go back to the High Risk Clinic in October to review my ultrasound and make a birth plan! How exiting!

Will update again on Friday after I speak to the midwife.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

27 weeks.

I didn't go to my GCT test last week, that little beauty will happen tomorrow. Again, still not looking forward to it, but alas it needs to be done.

Finding it increasingly hard to sleep of a night time, I'm up til around 2.30-3.00am every night before Ian's alarm wakes me up at 4.45am :( Can't put my finger on why, I guess it's just one of those great pregnancy things!

Experiencing bouts of reflux too. I had forgotten how nasty is was, I had it with Isla too, but not this early in the pregnancy (If you can call 27 weeks early).

Still no name decision or discussion taking place. Ian's decided he will probably puke/pass out during an actual delivery (regardless of whether it be vaginal or c-section) so I figure if he's not there I'll just name the baby and introduce them afterwards ;).

Massive kicks now, my whole stomach is jumping about most of the time. Isla felt "baby sister" "bump" her yesterday and she didn't quite know how to take it!

Next midwife appointment on Tuesday night, again in the Birthing Unit. Not sure if Ian will join me this time, I suspect he'll offer to stay home with Isla and I'll go alone. Fingers crossed I don't pass out - I could feel myself getting all woosey last appoinment when I was looking at the little crib with the heat lamp and all the suction equipment etc. My mind just races a hundred miles an hour and I start to feel all the colour drain from my face, then things spin a little...quite sad really! Luckily Kate was able to distract me last time, hopefully I'll be okay!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

26 weeks.

Going for GTT test on Thursday.

Busy, busy, busy around here these days. Isla's doing well, check for her updates on her blog

Big success with her on the toilet which is exciting. She was toilet trained earlier in the year, but then slipped back into nappies, much to our dismay. The other day I asked her to get a clean nappy and she looked in the packet and said, "there won't be enough left for baby sister" and has been in undies since :)

Nothing new to report. Will update soon.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Antenatal appointment.

My sister Kate came with me to my antenatal appointment last night, we spent the day together at the movies for my birthday, so we just headed to the hospital after that, although the traffic was horrendous and it took an hour and a half to get there, so we were half an hour late. Very quiet in the BU though (thankfully) Kate was disappointed in that, she wanted to hear screaming women, who knows why!

The midwife, Jane, was lovely. All my previous antenatal appointments have taken no more than 15 minutes maximum, but this one took 50 minutes! Mainly because she was happy to sit around and chat with us for the majority of the time.

Good news is, baby is doing perfectly! Last night was the first time I'd heard her heartbeat, and it was lovely and strong *wub*. Fundal height is measuring exactly 25cms which equals 25 weeks :D And, best of all, there are no scales in the birthing unit, so the exact number in cubic tonnes that I've gained lately remains unknown! Yippee!

Bad news, blood pressure is a little high, but nothing to worry about at this stage. SPD - check! Eugh. Can't get in through the hospital physiotherapists because they're completely booked out so it looks like private physio it is.

Next appointment is in the birthing unit again in 3 weeks time.

Monday, August 11, 2008

25 weeks.

Lots of Braxton Hicks now, glad I know what they are now, they were starting to freak me out a little. Feel completely different to when I was pregnant with Isla though.

Having absolutely feral pelvic pain, suspect it may be SPD, will have it checked out at tomorrow's antenatal appointment. Started on Thursday after I dropped Isla at kindy, hurt to walk/lift legs/get dressed etc. Took Isla shopping for new shoes to go with her new Orthotics and felt like my pelvis was separating when she asked me to carry her. Come Friday, I could barely walk at all without a lot of pain :(

Sunday morning (from about 2am onwards) I couldn't sleep because the pain was so bad. Luckily the Olympics have been keeping me company.

Will update again tomorrow after my appointment. Hopefully they don't have scales up in the birthing unit, not looking forward to the digits that will appear!

The size of a house.

literally. I am massive.

I took a belly shot yesterday and immediately deleted it off my camera, I was completely shocked by the sheer size of my baby belly :o.

I wonder what my fundal height is? I assume it'll be measured next week at my appointment, but holy hell, I look full term already :(

Monday, August 4, 2008

24 weeks.

Hello Braxton Hicks! I completely forgot what those pesky little buggers felt like, and had been wondering why my tummy kept getting tight. Silly me!

Feeling utterly titanic in size and quite tired. I'm managing to sleep right through the night lately *touch wood* with no toilet breaks which has been nice, especially since it's been so damn cold lately.

Have my first tiger stripes for this pregnancy too :( I thought I'd last a little longer before they reared their ugly head, but alas, I am not so lucky.

Went to the hairdressers on Thursday while Isla was at pre-school, my hair was absolutely feral and needed some long awaited TLC. Found a fabulous hairdresser, albeit an expensive one, who fixed the crap jobs I'd had done previously, but she's 30wks pregnant :( Here's hoping she's not on maternity leave for too long!

One week until midwife appointment. Found original yellow card. Camera charger arrived an hour ago and is getting a work-out as we speak.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Reliving the past...Part III The birth

Wheeled into the anaesthetic bay, hooked up to some weird white bag of fluid in a net. Local anasthetic shot in the arm/inside elbow joint for mother of all canula's to be inserted for morphine afterwards.

Ian sat with me while they prepared the theatre. I could hear them with all the clamps and things clanging about, bear in mind I am scared as all hell, Ian says, "sounds like a kitchen in there". Feel like I'm going to vomit at the thought.

Someone comes in and says that they're ready for me, I start to cry and say goodbye to Ian. He looks absolutely terrified and quite hilarious in his scrubs and hat. I tell the theatre staff that I am keeping my eyes closed because I am too scared to see medical equipment/operating table etc. They all laugh. I hate them all.

I'm asked to move over onto the "skinny bed" ie the operating table. It's cold. As soon as I lay down, they were sticking those heart monitor things to my chest, the BP cuff is wrapped around my arm and I'm asked to lay my arms on the arm boards where one of my arms is tied down.

The anaesthetist did tell me before hand that I once the mask was on I'd feel a lot of pressure in my throat, it'd feel like I had a golf ball stuck in there, he'd said. He was right. When the mask was first put on I couldn't sense any form of gas coming out of it and I was convinced he was suffocating me!! I pulled the mask off and said, "there's nothing coming out", and he told me there was and put the mask back on. I can remember the golf ball feeling so well, I kept grabbing my throat to make it stop, then I heard them say, "Okay she's out, let's get on with it" FARK! I was desperately trying to say, "I'm awake" and that was the last thing I remember.

I woke up in recovery around 5.20pm in so.much.pain. Nurse asks me how I'm feeling, I sob "It hurts so much!" and she says "oh, you're not hooked up to your pain relief" and connects the morphine to my canula. Fat lot of good it does, it just seems to make me itchy. Nurse comes back and I ask her if I had a girl. She says "yes", does my obs and goes again while I go back ot sleep. We repeat this at least another 3 times. Just before I'm transferred back to the ward, they realise I'm still on the theatre sheet (which is covered in blood and god knows what else) and they ask me to roll off it. You have got to be kidding me I think. It hurts so bad, I can't even explain!

Back on the ward, Ian is holding Isla, I am on oxygen and have hideous after-birth contractions, surgery pain and double vision, as well as the itchy and slight nausea from the morphine, I feel dreadful. I can't hold Isla because I am not well enough. Initially, I am scared to look at her, I can't explain why.

I wont go into the whole visitors thing again.

The next day, I am able to hold Isla in the morning, around 11am. The nurses looked after her overnight so I could rest. I give her a bottle and can't quite figure out how to hold her properly. Around 2pm I'm moved from my home of the past few weeks in the ante-natal ward to the post-natal ward. Room-mate askes staff to leave me there so she can help me look after Isla, and so she doesn't get a feral roomie. They insist I have to go.

Luckily, I get a private room, which I am in for about 5 minutes before visitors arrive. It takes 2 ward staff 2 trips each to move all the stuff I'd accumulated in my old room to the new one. My half sister and my nephew arrive, followed by my Dad. About half an hour after they leave my Nan arrives and my Mum - this is a big thing for my Mum, she is terribly afraid of hospitals and had tried to visit me once before Isla was born but couldn't stop crying or shaking, she only lasted about a minute.

Nurse comes in and says it's time to take out the catheter, so Mum and Nan leave. With the catheter out, I'm now free to get up out of bed and walk around. A few hours later a midwife came to help me with Isla and to help me out of bed and into the bathroom for a shower and to use the toilet while Ian gives Isla a bottle. I am certain my stomach is ripping apart as I get out of bed. Try to go to the bathroom, and I can't go. Midwife says to keep trying, and I do, I really need to pee, but I can't. After about 30 minutes of trying she suggests I shower as the running water may help me go. No such luck.

Over the course of the next few hours, I found myself sitting on the loo for long stretches of time, but not being able to pee. It hurt! At one point, a clot came out, I called the nurse and she didn't know what it was, it wasn't blood-like, more jelly like. Possibly a piece of placenta, they're not sure. It sits on the nurses desk and is passed around in the hope someone will know what it is. Hideous stink that was coming from me now disappears too. According to Ian, it was the worst thing he's ever smelt (which is particularly unnerving considering he used to work for a mortuary transfer business and picked up dead bodies for a living). The 'thing' is sent to pathology for identification.

All through that night I still couldn't pee. Around 3am it becomes unbearable. I can't stand up, I am in way too much pain to walk to the bathroom. I call a nurse and ask for a bedpan, I explain it hurts too bad, begrudgingly, she brings me one - and I still can't go. 6am my body starts convulsing from the pain and pressure in my bladder. I should point out that all the while, the nurses were telling me to drink more water. I'd had about 3 litres at this point.

I call a nurse, who gives me 2 bottles of water and ural sachets to drink, and I do. She gets the portable ultrasound machine and puts it on me, and says, "there's only 100mLs in your bladder!" HA! She finally gets sick of me complaining and says she'll have to put in a catheter, I think this was more of a threat than an offer, but I insist she does it. She gives me an injection first then puts it in, and hey presto! out comes 2 litres of pee immediately. She had to empty the bag straight away. I can't explain the relief I felt at that moment!

Am released on the Tuesday to come home (Isla was born on the Thursday).

Reliving the past...Part II

I remember it coming close to Christmas day and I wanted to go home. Christmas Eve I had a big breakdown, I yelled and cried at an idiotic Dr and a lovely midwife because I wanted to go home. I'd been in that hospital for 3 weeks and I was completely jack of it. Everyone else was busy making plans on how they'd celebrate and the hospital refused me a day pass to even go home for a few hours, even my room-mate was allowed to go home and drink champagne. Ian visited first thing in the morning with presents (He's shocking at picking presents, he brought me a giant teddy bear and "Guess Who" which would have been great presents if I were 6 years old). My Nan, Aunt, Uncle & cousins visited for about 15 minutes then everyone left. It wasn't even lunch time yet. That day was really, really sad. All the midwives I was accustomed to seeing were rostered off and the ward was full of temps. I was alone in my room with shitful Xmas day tv, and all I could hear outside were visitors for the other patients and crying babies.

So there were lots of APH's happening left right and centre. I can't remember exactly when and how far apart they were anymore. I'd seen a few different OB's while I was in that hospital, the one I was assigned to, said that they'd aim for 36-37wks before delivering, another OB, Jennifer, said that I'd have to make it to 38 weeks, and another Raymound, said there is no reason that I couldn't make it to 40 weeks! Although Jennifer told me all the OBs were on holidays and there wouldn't be any elective c-sections until around the 10th of January. Holy hell. Luckily, I guess, with the frequency of bleeding that I had, they decided after Christmas that I would be delivered with my "next significant bleed". This was sited on my notes.

New Years Eve. There was the most hideous midwife working this shift, along with one totally brilliant one. Room-mate and I were asleep by about 9.30pm, nothing much to celebrate when you're stuck in hospital while everyone else is off partying. Ian called at Midnight. Hideous midwife had champagne and waltzed into our room with the bottle saying things like "what a shame you can't have any". Bitch. I remember a patient in another room had an emergency and you could hear the brilliant midwife calling the hideous one, who was just leisurely walking the hallways, not to be hurried. The brilliant midwife was screaming at her to hurry and had pressed the alarm button for the OB to attend. I bled around 3am. I remember laying in bed terrified to press the nurses buzzer because I wasn't at all ready for an emergency c-section, nor was I ready to deal with an idiotic midwife, but after a few minutes I buzzed.

She came into my room and said, "Yes, what is it this time". "I'm bleeding", I say as I wait for her to page the OB to get me ready with canulas, strap me to the CTG and prep me for surgery - the canulas and CTG monitoring are procedure during an episode of bleeding. Instead, she didn't call for a Dr, nor did she put me on the CTG, instead she retreived a doppler from her pocket, put it on my tummy for 20 seconds and said, "The baby is fine" and left. I should add, the doppler was hers from home and not approved for her to use on the ward. I was left alone until 8am when I had my next round of observations.

One Dr, "Raymond" would see me every few days when he did rounds, and in an utterly bizarre run of coincidences, every time he visited me, I would haemorrhage within 12 hours, despite him not laying a finger on me. He was the Dr to visit me on New Years Day. He joked that seeing as though I always bled after seeing him, he was tempted not to visit me that morning, but said it was all okay because if I was to bleed I'd be delivered anyway. So, I said to him, "I bled last night" and he looked as though I'd hit him in the head with a hammer, there was NOTHING written in my notes about my bleeding. I should have been delivered. He was furious and stormed out of the room to see what had happened.

I didn't hear anymore of it though, but dreaded that woman being on shift in the future. (I still think to this day I should write to the NUM and report it, fat lot of good it would do, but it may help me personally).

I was visited during the week by my OB who said that I'd been put on the theatre list for Friday, 7.1.06, I was first on the list, so if there were no emergencies, I'd be going in at 1pm. Scary and exciting all at once to know that I would be a Mum on Friday. I rang Ian to tell him, told Mum and Nan. Repeated my wishes for absolutely no visitors that day, it was to be our family time, no if's or but's.

What's in a name?

So it appears that everyone has a comment on potential baby names. Ugh. Perhaps it's better to keep completely quiet about the names we're considering until our little bundle arrives, surely it would be harder to say "I hate the name" or "that's awful" when the child has already been delivered and named? ALthough, thinking back, so many people told us they really disliked Isla as a name when she was born. Everyone is keen to offer up suggestions too, but always suiting their naming styles, not ours.

These are some girls names I *love* but will most probably never use :(

* Savannah (probably too American?? I've loved this name since pregnant with Isla, a lady I roomed with had a 2 yr old called Savannah) * Saskia * Matilda (too popular) *Ariadne *Adelaide *Olive *Sibylla *Sophia (too popular) *Francesca (sounds bad with surname) *Audrey *Hermoine (don't want any association with Harry Potter) *Claudia *Annika *Lola (Ian thinks it rhymes too much with Isla and it's my favourite name) *Evangeline (Evie) *Ashton (Ian doesn't think it's androgynous at all, thinks it's soley a boys name) *Maggie (I don't even know why but I love it) *Georgia (My half sister'd daughter has this name, although I have never met her)

Ian's list: *Alexandria *Hope *Harmony *something starting with K...I can't remember them now, will have to find his list, no doubt he's forgotten all of them!

It's all too hard. If this baby was a boy, he'd already be named (in fact, I'd had his name ready since 2006!) Madden William Cole. Sigh. I love, love, LOVE the name Madden. Too masculine for a girl though. Perhaps a middle name? Something Madden Kate F---. Hmm.

Names I loved when pregnant with Isla. *Ava (although was told by SIL I couldn't use it as she had dibbs on it) *Eloise *Paige *Ella *Eliza *Isobel *Olivia *Isla (of course) *Sophia *London. Ian and I still really like London, although I struggle with the idea of "place names". All the other names (except Isla) are way too popular now or I'm just over them.

I'm going to keep this list bumped any time that a "helpful" suggestion is made, here's what's been suggested to me so far:

Gillian, Amelia, Rose, Sophie (surprisingly, as it was my sister who suggested it only 6 weeks after telling me I couldn't have it because she has dibbs on it), Harriet, Lucinda, Isobel, Anna, Lucille, Makayla, Juliet...I'm sure there are more, I just can't think of them now!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

23 weeks.

Nothing much to report this week so far.

Lower back is HURTING!! Dr explained it's from all the hormones released in pregnancy making ligaments etc relax a bit. Told me to contact the antenatal clinic and book in to see one of their physiotherapists, although the wait list is quite long, so I may just have a hunt around for a private physio, in the meantime, heat packs and panadol.

I am officially on maternity leave until May of next year - see above-mentioned back pain and standing on my feet for hours on end is making it worse. Found a lovely GP who gave me a certificate to bring forward my leave from September to last Thursday. Funnily enough, he spent the last 12 months doing an internship at the hospital I'll be having the baby at, so has told me to tell them in the antenatal clinic that "Raj says hi!". Too funny.

We took advantage of me not working and slipped away to this place near Sussex Inlet over the weekend for Christmas in July. It was really nice, just us girls, Ian stayed at home and played World of Warcraft til his eyes bled. Weird to think that when Christmas does come around we'll have two little girls in the house! How exciting!

Have been a complete domestic goddess today, been grocery shopping, done 4 loads of washing, made up beds, kitchen spotless, meals for the week sorted, fridge cleaned out. All to do now is change the doona cover and pillowcases.

New camera charger arriving within the next 10 days (but who's counting) so I'll have some belly shots and maybe some pics of little Isla, who yesterday decided her new baby sister's name will be "rina" as in ballerina! She's too cute someitmes!.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Reliving the past...Part I

Okay, here we go.

I'm going to write down what I remember about my Daughter's birth, which admittedly, isn't a lot. However, I think it will be good for me to be able to write it all out again now, and it may shed new light on things I'd overlooked in the past, or even help me with the questions to ask my midwives when I see them next.

Where to begin... The hardest part about documenting her birth, is that I was hospitalised 4 times (for a total of 49 days) from 22 weeks (although obviously, not continuously).

22 weeks (which is where I am now, eep!) I woke up one morning before hubby went to work. Felt something warm drip "down there". Didn't think too much of it though, it was only a tiny amount, so I stayed in bed for another 20ish minutes before it got the better of me and I went to the loo to check.

Sit on loo, notice two dark spots on my undies (they were black so I couldn't see what colour the spots were) only to wipe and be faced with blood. Bright red blood. I remembered I had to call the Birthing Unit straight away, and I also needed to call Ian who was starting a contract position that day. I don't remember who I called first.

Ian arrived home at the speed of light, and the trip to the hospital was made in record time. We went into the delivery room, I had to show the midwife my pad (I remember at the time being absolutely mortified by this proposition, but some how by the end of my pregnancy it became second nature - welcome to pregnancy & childbirth, leave your dignity at the door!). Midwife confirmed it was darkish in colour which indicated an older bleed, I'd have to stay in hospital overnight, which in turn, turned out to be 3 days.

Ordered to have no sex at all, and nothing to "stimulate the cervix". Great. No heavy lifting, no vaccuming etc etc.

Next bleed I was 28 weeks (I think, it's getting hard to remember) at a sporting event. I should never have left the house that day though, I had this hideous feeling all day that I was going to bleed or that I was already bleeding, and thus spent a massive amount of that day in the bathroom "just checking". This one was very scary indeed. A trip in an ambulance, whisked into the ED then the birthing unit, jeans covered in blood whipped off the minute the ambo drivers left the room. Lots of people buzzing around, drips, bloods taken, canula's inserted, first round of steroid injections given - OUCH! Bleeding stopped after around 12 hours, then transferred to the ward, but not before idiotic male midwife thought my waters had broken and then failed to find baby's heart beat, instead he found mine and scared the hell out of me by calling in other people, who reassured me it was my pulse rate that was being picked up on the CTG and within seconds, someone much more competant managed to find a very happy and content baby heart beat. The following day I was given an ultrasound. Placenta still very low, still completely covering the os. Baby has massive feet, and measures a week behind. Dates pushed back by 1 week, so 27 weeks. 3 days in hospital.

1.5 days after discharge and I'm back at the birthing unit at 1.30am with more bleeding. Not a great deal like last time, but bleeding none-the-less. Dr's are unhappy to see me, midwives are getting used to me by this point. 2 canula's inserted incase I need to deliver. Talk about sending me to St George or RPA should things turn pear-shaped. See my favourite midwife who see's my name on the patient board and asks to be assigned to me, bless her. Bleeding dwindles away to practically nothing, and due to the ward being full, I'm shown to the "Good Room" within the BU. It has a corner spa (although not for you!), double bed and tv - none of the other rooms have the luxury of a tv, which means you hear nothing but the moaning and screaming of labouring and birthing women, not the easiest environment to 'relax' in. Plus this room is hidden at the end of the corridor, and around a corner, far away from the chaos. 4 days in hospital, advised to go to another nearby(ish) hospital should I bleed again before 34 weeks because this hospital isn't equipped for a preterm delivery any earlier than 34wks. Great.

10 days from last admission, wake up to go to the loo (such is a pregnant woman's perogative) and, you guessed it, blood. Speed of light drive to next hospital. Get lost in carpark, can't find the enquiries desk, can't find the lifts, can't find the birthing unit. Finally find the bloody place after running the corridors and announce to the staff behind the desk "I'm 29 weeks and I have Placenta Praevia Grade IV and I'm bleeding". None of them blinks an eye. After about 2 or 3 minutes a midwife comes up to me and shows me to a birthing unit, highly unimpressed that I've disturbed her from whatever it was she was doing. Gives me a gown to put on, tells me to give her a urine sample, get changed and get on the bed, she'll be back later to check on me. Thankfully I wasn't bleeding to death at this stage otherwise I would have been quite pissed.

Dr comes to visit me, and tells me I shouldn't be there because I am not in the residential zone for that hospital. I show him my yellow card where the Registrar had written for me to report here should I bleed. Dr is cranky as all hell and starts world war III with other hospital for sending me there when I am not their "problem".

Eventually shown to a room on the maternity ward. A four bed room. 2 women labouring opposite me, one with a newborn next to me, and a bathroom down the corridor. Lovely. Dr comes to see me and asks how long I stay in my old hospital with each bout of bleeding. I tell her that their policy is 48hrs once the bleeding stops. She says I can go home after 24 hours, "this is excellent", I think.

24 hours comes and goes, in the mean time I've been moved to the opposite side of the maternity ward, to the antenatal wing, right next door to the feto-natal unit (where they do all kinds of weird things with unborn babies, like blood transfusions etc). Dr visits again, I have to stay another 24 hours. I am pissed off, but what can I do about it? I lay in bed and wait for the hours to pass before I go home.

The next day arrives and I'm greeted with the wonderful news that I will not be going home today, I will in fact be staying here until I reach 34 weeks or deliver the baby, whichever happens first. And, should I make it to 34 weeks, I have the choice of staying at this hospital or transferring back to my original hospital until the baby is born. Next time I go home, I'll have a newborn. I am only 30 weeks. Feeling really pissed off at this stage!.

Somewhere between here and 35.2wks I have another 7 bleeds. One of them I remember so vividly. It was a Saturday and I'd decided that I should have a Nana nap around midday. A male nurse comes to do my obs but see's that I'm asleep so leaves me to get some rest, what a doll. He comes back as I wake up and asks if he can take my blood pressure, sure no problem. I offer my arm to him but he insists I sit up with my feet dangling over the edge of the bed to get a more accurate reading. As I sit up I feel a warm gush and jump up out of bed declaring "Oh my God, I think I've pissed myself" (charming as ever!) and head off to the toilet, bp arm wrap thing dangling off my arm. Get to the bathroom door and notice legs are covered in blood, there's a trail of blood from my bed to where I'm standing and a big bloody patch on my sheets. Fark!

Male nurse panics, I get back into bed as he presses the alarm button. About a billion people rush into the room, and before I know it I'm strapped to the CTG machine while the male nurse preps me for surgery. He takes off all my nail polish and tapes down my rings ready for the big event. Quizzes me on what I've eaten lately (umm, a packet of twisties!) and I sign consent forms for an emergency c-section.

A doctor, who I think may have been Russian going by her accent, with an apalling bedside manner, enters the room and sees that I am having regular contractions which are going off the charts. She kindly offers me pain relief, "you would like some pethidine?" but I refuse, it's not hurting. With all the blood mopped up, and all the evidence thrown into the linen hamper, she declares that the bleed itself was not significant, that I don't need to go to surgery, stating the blood loss was only 50mLs and leaves. Male nurse shakes his head in disbelief, saying, "that was way more than 50mLs". Ian's Scooby Doo boxer shorts have seen better days.

That was the scariest of all my bleeds. Given I was due in February, and it was December when I was admitted, it was a foregone conclusion that I would be fortunate enough to spend both Christmas and New Years Eve in hospital. Not a fun time to be on complete bedrest I can assure you.

I spoke too soon!

Turns out Ian could feel the baby kick! Last night in fact, only a few short hours after posting here. He was a little freaked out by it though, he didn't feel our daughter kick until the day she was born, so the thought of a really little person inside of me was a bit too freaky for him to handle.

Sore tummy from constant coughing, hips still sore, lower back hurting now too.

3 weeks until next appointment at the hospital. Looking forward to it actually, I'll be 25 weeks so no doubt I'll be sent to the clinic for that hideous Glucose test (although not looking forward to that part). The first one I had with my daughter came back high at 8.5 (I think) so I had to re-do it, lucky me. It turned out to be okay though, fingers crossed the same applies this time 'round.

Have been thinking perhaps I should write down what I remember from my daughters birth, and how I felt. Maybe it will help me move on more from the not-so-wonderful experience?

Monday, July 21, 2008

22 weeks.

And I have the flu. I feel awful. Woe is me.

Nothing much to report. Baby girl is kicking very strongly now, Ian still can't feel it though, but I'm sure it won't be long until he can.

Ian's bday today. Happy 27th Hubby.

Picked up daughter from Mother's place today and received another name suggestion "Harriet". Bah!

Monday, July 14, 2008

21 weeks.

Only a day between updates, but who cares, right?

Hips are farking sore. Getting minimal sleep. Baby moving a lot of an evening time, and right down low. Having really vivid dreams again, 3 pretty awful one's in succession over the course of last night. The last one, my daughter almost drowned, woke me in such a panic, I thought my heart was going to beat right out of my chest :(.

Feeling really tired this week, not sure why, I've not done anything extra to warrant said tiredness. Went to visit a work colleague today who promptly told me I look dreadful "look at those dark circles under your eyes!". Hmph.

I read through the NSW Dept of Health issued "Having a baby" or whatever it's called, but I still wanted to hear more, particularly about birth.Started reading "Up The Duff" by Kaz Cooke last week and really enjoying it, one particularly funny part made me snort:
"Marg's getting on in her pregnancy now. She just rang to say she was in the shoe shop and a woman told her she had good posture. Marg, completely vague, swollen and stuffed full of pregnancy info, meant to tell the shop assistant that's because when she walks, she 'leads with her sternum', the breastbone. Unfortunately what she actually said was she 'leads with her perineum', which is the area between the vagina and the anus"... Hahahahaha

Can't find my damn antenatal yellow card anywhere. Not inclined to tell the hospital, considering it was only replaced last visit because I'd lost my original one. Hoping it's at work.

Mum has been emailing me with potential names for the baby. "Amelia Kate Rose" was her last effort. That's after she's suggested: Lucinda, Eugenie, Molly, Georgia, Gillian... Our original plan was to have "Evelyn Kate" as the middle names, Evelyn being my Mum's middle name and Kate being my sister's name (well, she's a Katherine technically, but goes by Kate). The day we found out we were having another girl, Mum said don't use Evelyn after her because she's never liked it and never uses it. Back to the drawing board on that one

Sunday, July 13, 2008

20 weeks.

okay, almost 21 weeks [in 2.5hrs] but it slipped my mind to post here this week.

This week I'm not feeling too bad really, apart from Thursday night when I left work early because my stomach felt so tight I couldn't even stand properly. Not Braxton Hicks, just a constant tight that wrapped around the top of my stomach and lasted about 4ish hours. Must remember to ask Midwife about this.

Having difficulty sleeping, last night was particularly bad. I seem to be able to lay only on my sides (I've never been able to sleep on my back, which proved very troublesome after my c-section) but can only last about 20 mins on each side before being woken by pain in my hips. Not sure how to remedy this, will have to try some more pillows or wrapped up towels and see how we go. It's exhausting!

Finally put some things on layby and bought some clothes for this little lady. A few rompers, bodysuits and the like, a couple of wraps and we get the car seat either this week or next. Toying with the idea of a bassinette for this one, we never had one last time, our little one was indeed very little (only 2.5kgs born) and spent the first 4 or 5 weeks sleeping in her pram because the cot just seemed far too big for her.

So, we're getting there with finding a name for this little person, 2 potential names start with "L" and one starts with "H". No doubt everyone will hate them all but meh, you can't please everyone. Ian insists that it isn't important that we decided a name now, "these things can't be rushed" he claims. Men.

All talk on the subject has been banned until further notice as we're both getting the shits, him with the fact that I want to pick something now, and me with the fact he won't commit.

Our little girl is very pleased with getting a new little sister, and even said to me tonight "Mummy I wish I had someone to play with" so I asked, "Who would you like to play with?" "My little sister" she replied. Melted me completely.

She also commented as a protective big sister yesterday, on our way to meet up with my Mum for lunch, Ian put his hand on my tummy and she said "Daddy, that's not Mummy's tummy, that's my little sister!". Aww.

I still have another 4 ish weeks until my next appointment - in the Birthing Unit. I'm preparing myself now for the howling, swearing and screaming that I'll undoubtedly be greeted with. It's really quite intimidating being in your 2nd trimester and hearing ladies in full blown labour. I remember when I was first hospitalised with my last pregnancy, I was 22 weeks, and I can vividly recall the screams and moans and groans that I first heard almost 4 years ago. Scared the living daylights out of me to be honest. At that time, I remember thinking, "thank god I'm having a c-section!". The following 3 times I was admitted to BU's it didn't bother me so much. This time round though, with the emphasis being placed on a possible VBAC, I think I'll be more terrified than ever!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The blog is now pink!

So you know what that means!

Yep, we're having another little Princess! Measuring spot on for her dates which is great news, my other little one was always behind, thus always changing my due date! But here we are 19 weeks and 1 day pregnant with another little girl :)

The scan went well. They were running late and I was worried I was going to wet my pants in the waiting room, luckily a kind-hearted receptionist let me go to the loo before I was called in, or it would have been a mop and bucket job.

10 fingers, 10 toes and all the appropriate bits in between. The other good news is that my placenta isn't being a prick like last time, so I can breathe a little easier now. Although the ultrasound tech said yesterday that the placenta "looked good", I went through the results and films today with a VMO at the Hospital.

Technically, the placenta is low-lying, but not to the extent that it was in my first pregnancy. According to the High Risk Dr I saw today, low-lying means anything less than 5cms away from the os (cervix) and this one is 4.2cms away, so I will be getting re-scanned at 34 weeks to see whether it has moved etc.

Now here's the exciting news, she asked me what model of care I wanted, and I was absolutely gobsmacked that I was allowed to choose, and why can I choose?? Because I am no longer deemed High Risk!!!! Yippee!!! I have chosen to see the midwives in the evening clinic so hopefully that will rule out waiting for 2 hours like I did today.

One more piece of very exciting news, is that this Dr, who's name I can't think of at all, is encouraging me to try a VBAC! How fabulous is that! Of course, I will be encouraged assuming that all the stars align (well, no PP, no pre-E, no breech position etc). She will let me go 10 days over to go into spontaneous labour, otherwise another c-section is on the cards because she doesn't like to do inductions. BUT, she's also happy for me to have another c-section if I choose, she's leaving it up to me and I feel great knowing that I have some sort of control over things (to some extent anyway).

So, that's it for now, I will scan some pics of the new little girl tomorrow.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

So, ultrasound is tomorrow morning. 11.30am. Shitting myself.

Feeling uneasy about the whole placenta praevia likelihood. When I saw the FS before conceiving this little treasure, he told me that my risk was only 2% - not too shabby, or so I thought, until he pointed out that I only had a 1% chance with my daughter's pregnancy, and managed to wind up with it.

I have had different midwives tell me though, that PPIV babies are miracle babies. Basically, they implant at the last possible time before becoming a miscarriage, so the ones that 'make it' are meant to be.

Preparing myself for the prospect of getting sick on the ultrasound bed...Freaking at how I'll react to the news of PP. *Sigh*

Sunday, June 22, 2008

18 weeks.

Sad. Weepy. Sluggish in body and mind.

Since my visit to the Hospital last week, I've found myself overly emotional and anxious. I think a lot of it has to do with being back at that hospital. The hospital where I should have delivered my daughter. The hospital that told me not to go back should I have another bleed. The hospital with the mean midwife who wasn't interested in me or my baby.

I've burst into tears a lot today. Nothing to trigger it. Same with last night. Ever thoughtful and caring husband's words of wisdom "Well, you wanted to be pregnant". Jackass.

There are things I need to work through, I admit that much. It's only sinking in now exactly how stressful my pregnancy with my daughter was and how adamant it has made me to not allow the same circumstances to arise again (the part where my placenta embedded I could not control, obviously, nor the APH's, or the need for a c-section, the list goes on).

AND? PTSD? Possibly? Having a horrific pregnancy, a c-section, premature baby, then learning that my beautiful daughter has a life-long, incurable disabilty. It could be on the cards.

Stay tuned.

On the brighter side though, baby kicked me really hard last night that it actually made me jump!

1 week til Ultrasound. I've changed the background layout to blue, I'm certain this one's a boy.