Friday, July 2, 2010

Formula = Failure? I dont think so...

Throughout my pregnancy, I was adamant that I wanted to breastfeed, that I was going to give it the biggest effort that I could muster.  I didn't want to formula feed again, because I felt with Gaby, that I missed out on something special, by not breastfeeding - plus I could do without the costs that formula feeding entails.

While I was in hospital, I really gave it my all - I was so determined to 'learn' how to breastfeed, if it was the last thing I did.  I saw the lactation consultant in the hospital, I spoke to the midwives for pointers & to see if they had any wisdom for me.  We were sometimes able to latch by ourselves, and sometimes Emersyn would have a decent feed, but the other half of the time we couldn't latch, and  both of us would end up in tears - until the midwife came & helped us to latch on.  I felt somewhat confident, on the morning we left, that  I could do it - that I could go home & breastfeed my baby. 

I managed two feeds, before the latching problem became too much for me.  Emersyn was feeding for 3 minutes at a time, and was constantly grizzly - I knew she wasn't getting enough, but hoped that somehow it'd all just mesh & we would be fine.  That didn't come to fruition however... Sunday night, I spent 5 hours crying, Emersyn spent 5 hours crying - while we tried to latch in different positions, I tried my best to stay relaxed, but it just wasn't working.... at midnight I bundled the kids up in the car & we drove to the nearest 24 hour supermarket to get bottles... and formula...

I cried while driving to the supermarket (perhaps not the safest time to drive), I cried while walking through the supermarket, I cried on the way home.... I bawled as I made up the first bottle of formula, and bawled even harder, as Emersyn suckled away ravenously on the bottle, making up for the feeds she had missed out on.  After her first bottle, Emersyn went straight to sleep - exhausted from hours of crying, and I hopped in bed - then cried as I went to sleep, because I felt like such a failure....  I'd made it clear to everyone that I was GOING to breastfeed, and that formula feeding wasn't an option, yet only 4-5 days after her birth, there I was - making up formula again.

The next day I confessed to my Mum, who was very supportive - of anyone she knew how badly I wanted to breastfeed, and how hard I had tried... I felt a little better when she told me that formula feeding didn't make me a failure, but at the same time, I knew that she was saying that because she was my Mum - and she's not the type of parent who would call her daughter a failure.  I had the midwife later that afternoon, and knew for sure that I would get a 'telling off' from her - but was amazed when she told me that formula feeding wasn't a sign of weakness, it wasn't a sign that I was a failure, or a bad parent, or that I gave up too easily - and that the most important thing was that Emersyn was being fed.  Full stop.  We spoke a little about my issues (which were the same I had with Gaby), and about how I was feeling about formula feeding - and she reassured me over and over, that it was okay, that YES, breast is best - but in reality it doesn't work for everyone.

In a text message to my Mum, I told her that since I had started formula feeding, I was happier, and Emersyn was happier - which led to Gaby being happier, and that was the main thing... and it formed my new parenting mantra...

... and at the end of the day, I do believe that is what is most important... I was so tense and nervous while breastfeeding, and anxious about breastfeeding, that it was preventing me from making the most of the early days of my daughters life - as had happened with Gaby, and I decided that I would sooner be able to take it all in, and have a relaxed, happy, calm atmosphere at home, than to have that anxiety, stress & tension, cause a horrible home environment.

Am I upset that I couldn't breastfeed?  Yes.
But am I happy, is Emersyn happy, is Gaby happy?  Yes....
and the latter is what is *the* most important thing to me.  So am I a failure?  No.  I don't think so.  I'm doing what *I* know is best for *my* family... my daughter still has somewhere warm to sleep, she gets lots of love & cuddles, she is regularly fed - and is thriving, so surely, as a parent - I am doing something right...

Monday, June 28, 2010

Ovaries doing there thing.. but nowhere for the egg to go!

I realised today that I am having (or about to have) my first post partum ovulation - my first thought was "well I don't need to worry - because I'm single there is no way I can get pregnant!", then it dawned on me... I HAD A TUBAL LIGATION - there really IS no way for me to get pregnant now (well, technically!).  I feel strange knowing that I won't be pregnant again, that that part of my life is over... never again will I get a BFP, or have a first glimpse of my baby, or find out the sex, or complain about pregnancy-related heartburn, or cry when I hear my baby cry for the first time.

I don't feel sad about it, I don't regret it - but it does feel weird.  Might sound strange, but I feel a little more relaxed, knowing that I technically shouldn't be able to get pregnant now.  I have had such bad luck with birth control in the past - that I never really felt safe with ANY of the forms of BC I used.  But this time, with all pathways to the uterus being cut, I feel pretty certain that there will be no more unplanned - or planned, pregnancies for me!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Life with a baby in the house

Life with a baby in the house has taken a little while to get used to!!!!  I didn't realise how settled into our own routine, Gaby & I were - and then Miss Emersyn came home and it allllll got tossed up in the air & mooshed around... that said, it only took a couple of days for me to get back into the newborn swing of things - feeding, changing nappies, keeping on top of housework, going to bed 2 hours earlier than normal at night to catch up on some sleep.  It's kind of like I never stopped!

The only difference has been adapting to life with a newborn & a 3 1/2yo....  For the most part, I think we are doing well, but I do feel that I'm somewhat 'neglecting' Gaby - not in the not feeding, not cleaning, not caring what she does sense, but in the affection sense.  It seems everyday I plan to make time *just* for Gaby, where we can do something together, and I can devote all my attention to her, but once the baby is in bed, there is washing to be folded, dishes to be done, jobs jobs and more jobs - and next thing I know it's time for Gaby to go to bed.  Gaby doesn't seem to be displaying signs of feeling left out, or feeling like she's not getting enough love, but *I* am aware of it.  I guess once Emersyn is a little older, my parents will be able to take her for an hour or two, and we can REALLY concentrate on having Mummy & Gaby time.

Gaby is adapting really well to having a little sister!  I doubt she could love her anymore than she does - as soon as Emery-Boo wakes up, Gaby is right by her side & doesn't leave until she's back in bed... she is always wanting to touch her, hold her, cuddle her, kiss her - it is so heartwarming, and makes all the dramas of the past 9 months, seem totally worth it.  Because I'm bottle feeding Emersyn now, Gaby is able to help out with that - and I think that has helped her feel 'important' - but has also helped her start to bond more with Emersyn.  I think that in a few weeks time, when Emersyn is taking more in, and actually staying awake for longer than it takes to give her a feed & change her nappy, the two of them will really start to interact.  I can't wait!

Emersyn's father was down for 6 days this week, so he could meet his little girl & spend some time with her... he was very much the doting father, and whenever he was holding her (which was most of the time), he couldn't take his eyes off her.  When he had to leave on Friday, he cried - which I thought was really sweet, and is a nice change from Gaby's father, who has never really seemed terribly fussed about spending time with her, or not.  At this point, he is going to try and get down every 6 weeks for a weekend - hopefully he is able to manage that, it will be beneficial for him, and for Emersyn... no matter how *I* feel about him, I still want him to be an active part of her life, and someone she knows that she can rely on.  On Friday Emersyn met her Nana, and she seemed very smitten as well!  It's nice to know that even though me & Jason aren't together, that his family can look past it, and be happy to see me, and excited about seeing Emersyn & spending time with her.  Her Nana lives down here, so hopefully she will be a somewhat regular feature in Emersyn's life.

Here are a few recent pictures of little miss Emmy

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The arrival of Emersyn Lily-May!

ednesday 16th June, at 7am I arrived at the hospital for my elective repeat cesarean. I was taken up to the birthing suite, where they monitored Emersyn's heartbeat for a couple of minutes, and the midwife who was looking after me did some paperwork. I met with the obstetrician who would be performing my cesarean, and soon after that the anaesthetist came in and introduced himself to me. He had to put my IV in, and that was a bit of a mission - he attempted once in my hand and it didn't work - and after he removed the canula (?), I had a big amount of blood come out of my hand, and land all over his pants & the floor. I hoped it wasn't a sign of things to come!

9.30am the obstetrician came and told me it was time! We walked down the corridor, to where the operating theatres were, and it was then that it dawned on me - I was having a baby - VERY soon! My sister was going in with me, and had to wait in the corridor, until they had put my spinal in - I gave her a big hug & in I went. As soon as I was in there, the tears came to my eyes, and I felt very overwhelmed - but in an excited way. The OR staff all introduced themselves, they seemed very relaxed and like nice people, so it helped to keep me somewhat calm.

When they put the spinal in, my midwife held my hands & talked to me - I guess to take my mind of the discomfort of the spinal. It didn't really hurt as such, but it wasn't something I'd want to do everyday! It felt like it took forever to get administered, but it was probably only a couple of minutes. Once it was in the anaesthetist told me I would start feeling warmth in my legs very soon - and almost immediately, on it came. It was such a weird feeling, as the anaesthetic did its job, feeling my legs one moment, and then next knowing they were there, but not being able to feel them.

They got me set up on the operating table, and then my sister came in - and it was time to begin!!!!! I was in a rather happy mood, and laughed with my sister, and my midwife, and chatted with one of the nurses. I could feel pressure on my stomach, and my abdomen moving around, but I had no idea what they were actually doing. It seemed to be taking a long time, and my midwife told me that I had a lot of adhesions in my abdomen, from my first cesarean, so it was taking a bit longer than normal, for them to get to the uterus.

Then the time come - my midwife said to my sister "if you want to take photos of the delivery, you can stand up now and get ready" - as soon as she said that, tears came to my eyes again, I couldn't believe my baby girl was going to be born in the very near future! Again I could feel pulling and tugging, and pressure - but had no real idea what was happening, then my midwife said "here she comes Em" - and the next thing I heard was the cutest little, almost meowing sound, I heard it again, and again - and then I heard an extremely loud, hearty newborn crying.

And the tears started flowing... I was lying on the OR table bawling my eyes out - almost more than Emersyn was!!!!!!! The midwife told my sister she could go over and take photos of them doing the initial post-birth check, and that she could trim the cord if she wanted to, I lay there continuing to cry, so anxious to see my baby, and so relieved she'd arrived. The anaesthetist told me I could move the curtain out of the way a little, and I would be able to see them doing the check. As soon as I did this, and had my first glimpse of my baby girl, a whole new set of tears came.

After her check was done, the midwife brought her over to me, for a kiss, and to have a look... I could barely see her, through the tears - but even with my blurry tear stained vision, I fell immediately in love with this little bundle, who was then being placed in my sisters arms, for a cuddle. Terri sat beside me, holding Emersyn, and I couldn't take my eyes off her... it was then that I noticed that Emersyn had hair!!! Not something most parents would get excited about, but Gaby had no hair until she was 18 months old, so it was quite the novelty for me!!!!

My midwife asked the surgeons if it was okay for me to have skin to skin, and they said it was fine, so my midwife placed Emersyn inside my gown, and I had my first cuddle - and first proper look, at my baby girl. I couldn't stop kissing her soft little cheek, it was an amazing moment... and one that I wish I had been able to have with Gaby, when I had her (the hospital didn't have a skin to skin policy for cesareans, back then).

Around 11.15, I was deemed stable enough to go to recovery. In recovery we continued with the skin to skin, and as the anaesthetic slowly wore off, I was able to take in more of the details of my beautiful daughter.... the fact she had the same lips as her big sister - and the same chubby cheeks.. her tiny little fingers, with the perfect little finger nails, her long eyelashes poking out from underneath her closed eyelids... It really was one of the most blissful, happy, amazing moments of my life.

12.40 we were taken up to the maternity ward - I was a little sad because 1pm-3pm were no visiting hours, so my parents & Gaby weren't able to come up until 3pm. It was lovely seeing Gaby with Emersyn - you could see that she fell in love with her immediately! We were discharged from hospital at midday on Sunday... it was great to finally get home, and to be able to get on with our life as a new little family.

Emersyn Lily-May Oakden
16 June 2010, 10.10am
8lb0oz, 21.7"
little sister to Gabrielle Jayda-Leigh

waiting for it all to begin

seconds old

skin to skin, in recovery

my little family is complete!

the proud big sister, having her first cuddle

asleep on Mummy's bed

ready to go home

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Two days to go!


I cannot believe I am at the point in my pregnancy, where Emersyn's arrival is close!!!  Two days and my baby girl will be here - hopefully this time in 48 hours she'll already be here, meaning I have less than two days to go!  Technically....

Today I have to go to the hospital, for my pre-admission appointment with the anaesthesiologist & hospital midwife - and I will be given the actual time for my cesarean!  The appointment apparently takes an hour, and it should by all rights, be my last appointment - while pregnant, at the hospital!  They will be giving me some forms to get bloods taken tomorrow, and then after that......... it's all go!  I just need to make it through tomorrow in one piece, and attempt to sleep tomorrow night (that may be a mission!).

Tomorrow my sister also arrives, so I will be picking her up at the airport, and then we are going for a pre-baby coffee at the mall!  Gaby doesn't know that Terri is coming up yet, so when it is time for pre-school pick up, I am going to just get my sister to go in - lol it will blow Gaby's mind to be picked up by her Aunty Terri!!!!!!!!

I'm trying to make the most of my last couple of days of pregnancy - trying to pay as much attention as I can to how it feels when Emersyn moves, how my body feels in general... the anticipation and excitement... the nerves... because I'm never going to experience any of this again!  As much as I am sad about that, I don't suddenly have the inclination to say "no, I don't want a tubal ligation anymore" - so I know that it is the right choice for me... but as I said - still sad.  I am feeling right now, as if my family will be complete, once Emersyn is safely in my arms - and to be honest, it feels great.  

I don't think I'll be taking anymore belly photos, so here is my last one, taken at 38w4d...
by rights, the next photo of Emersyn that I post - should be OF Emersyn, in the flesh - not hidden by all my flesh!

... and for good measure, a recent picture of my BIG girl!

Gaby is starting to get excited too - I think realising that it is only two days away - a concept she can actually grasp, has made it more real to her... I truly cannot wait for that moment when she first lays eyes on her little sister... nor for that moment when she kisses her for the first time.  And like a true emotional, pregnant woman - I am now crying, so shall sign off..........

Sunday, June 6, 2010

False alarm.. home & pregnant!

My contractions on Saturday, turned out to be fake labour.. or practise labour.. or my body getting half way there & thinking "na, can't be bothered doing this today".  I had all the signs of labour, however my cervix didn't dilate at all.  I knew it wouldn't - I'm sure my cervix doesn't KNOW how to dilate!!!!

The staff at the hospital, for the most part, were lovely - but I did have a couple of doctors on the Saturday, who made me feel stupid, and as if they thought I was pretending to be in so much pain.  At their 'worst', the contractions were 3 minutes apart and lasting for 90 seconds, and i have to say, if my writhing around in pain wasn't convincing to them, then it must take a LOT to convince them, that someone is in pain!   I felt as if they bullied me into getting a shot of pethadine - they assured me it would make me go to sleep, and I'd wake up without contractions... instead the peth didn't make me go to sleep, and the contractions only served to get worse!!

However by about 8pm that night, the contractions were settling down, still painful, but not as painful, so I was admitted onto the maternity ward for the night.  My contractions carried on, irregularly during the night, and when I woke up on Sunday morning, they began picking up... but only for a couple of hours.  By about midday, I was having one contraction an hour, and they weren't painful.  Eventually at 7pm I was allowed to go home!  The one great thing through all of my experience in hospital, was that Emersyn handled everything perfectly - she remained active, and her heartbeat was showing the variations it should, when it should... that helped me feel a lot less worried about the whole thing!

Was a crazy weekend, but I do have to admit that I'm glad I got to experience some form of labour & contractions...  I am 100% sure about my decision to have a repeat cesarean, but seeing as this is my last baby - it is nice to be able to say that I experienced a little bit of labour/contractions, something that 'normal' women go through.  If it wasn't for my epilepsy, perhaps now I would be a little more likely to try for a VBAC, but the risks of labouring with epilepsy, are too scary for me... even though I'm sure I'd be monitored well.

So now I'm home - Gaby has been at her Dad's since yesterday morning, and will be home in 2 hours, it's been nice to have a whole day to rest up, but I am really really missing my baby girl!  I got her father to ring me at the hospital yesterday, so I could talk to Gaby & ended up bawling my eyes out afterward.  She's going to get tonnes of cuddles tonight when she gets home, that's for sure!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, June 4, 2010

potential early labour - hospital here I come!

Woke up at 1am with wierd diarrhoea like pains, but managed to sleep on & off until 5.45am, when I woke up - still with the pains, but worse.  While I lay in bed worrying because Emersyn wasn't moving, I realised slowly, that these pains were coming somewhat regularly, and that whenever I had them, my whole uterus was hardening.  I decided to start timing them 'just incase' - and it didn't take long to notice a pattern!!!

I got out of bed after I'd had 4 contractions, 5 minutes apart - to see if the change of position would help, but it didn't.  I rang my midwife, who advised me to take some paracetamol & see what happened in an hour - or to ring her before the hour, if things got worse.  I then rang my parents & put them on potential-baby-arrival-warning.  The pains did get a bit worse, and started being closer together, so I rang the midwife, and she has asked me to meet her at the hospital at 9am.. which is RIGHT NOW.. but my Dad is taking his sweet time getting ready, so they still aren't here!!!!

The pains are still here, and still regular - I really have NO idea what is happening, it's not as bad as I imagined it would be, but then again, this is probably just EARLY labour, IF it is labour at all!  A lot of the pains I can feel in my back as well, and I have started having very loose bowel movements, so maybe it IS the big event!  If it does happen that I'm in labour, i will be having a repeat cesarean - as planned.  Because of my epilepsy, I have been advised against trying for a VBAC, but now that the time has (possibly) arrived, I think if it weren't for the epilepsy & risks associated, I would maybe try for a VBAC!!!!

My Mum scared the heck out of me, when she said that Emersyn could be here by lunch time... No way jose!!!!

I am presuming I am going to be sent home, but you never know :)  I will update when I can, dear blog... hopefully in a few days time, when I'm home from the hospital!!!!!!!!!!

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Full term!

Today, I am officially full term!!!!!!!!!!!

Emersyn now has my permission, to arrive whenever she feels she's ready - preferably not on a Monday or Tuesday, but if she's that way inclined, so be it!  A very weird thought to think that in 2 weeks time - at the latest - my long awaited baby girl, will FINALLY be here...  I am feeling very relaxed about everything, quite at peace really, just a little impatient!!!!!  I know deep down I'll be waiting until my cesarean date to meet Emersyn, but the thought that she could arrive at any stage now, is very exciting!

Gaby is on her first ever school trip today - preschool are taking her class, to the closest library - in a bus!  Gaby was so excited about it, before we left for preschool, and I have to admit, I was (am) VERY excited for her to!  Suddenly she is doing all these 'big kid' things, and it is making me realise that she's not my baby anymore... well, she'll always be my 'baby', but she's growing so fast...  It's amazing.. I feel priveleged to be able to observe her everyday... to be there when she learns something new, or makes a realisation about the way the world works.  It's the best part of being a Mummy!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

So much to say, no motivation to say it...

Sitting at the computer for more than 5 minutes, is suddenly a very unappealing activity for me.  The right side of my ribcage aches when I am sitting (thanks Emersyn!), and to be honest, my brain just is NOT working...

So this is the end of pregnancy.. discomfort, brain working at 1/4 power..  no motivation to do anything.  EXCEPT MEET MY BABY!  I got my cesarean date confirmed last week - Emersyn will be making her arrival on June 16th!  I am now 36w5d pregnant, so in two days time, I will be classed as full term - and in all reality, I am at the point that I just want to meet her.  I'm not of the attitude "I'm so over being pregnant" - because I'm not really - I feel quite good physically, minus the rib pain... I could probably handle another 6 or so weeks of this.... I'm just so ready to MEET Emersyn.. so ready to finally look at her, and cuddle her.  Knowing that she'll be here in 16 days time, is such a tease - 16 days, in reality - isn't that far away, but at the same time, it seems like SOOOOOOOO far away.

Gaby and I both appear to be coming down with our first official Winter 2010 colds - being sick isn't really the way I wanted to spend the last couple of weeks of my pregnancy!  I still have so much that I want to do around the house - get the tidying finished, cook a few meals to freeze, but being sick, all I really feel like doing is lying in bed, reading my book - or sitting on the couch, snuggling with my little snuggle bunny (aka Gaby).  I shouldn't complain though, we have both been so lucky with our health, and I think that as long as we stay nice and warm, and don't go out a lot - we should be okay.  

I had my final growth ultrasound, last Tuesday - it was great to see Emersyn again, and to hear that everything looks great.  The amniotic fluid level was fine, the flow through the umbilical cord was fine, organs looked fine - everything was just FINE...  She has been continuing to steadily grow, at the same rate - still in the 90th percentile for weight - as of Tuesday, weighing in at approximately 7lb2oz!!!!  I had a nice u/s tech, and she took time to show me cute things - the fact Emersyn has lots of fuzzy hair, her holding her foot in her hand, her little nose & lips... made me fall even more in love, and all the more impatient to see her up close & in person!!!!!!!

nose & lips... 
I think she'll have chubby cheeks like Gaby did!

profile view

I then saw the high risk ob for the LAST time on Thursday!  I discussed with her, my fears about Emersyn not moving enough - so she organised an NST & gave me a form to do daily kick counts on, and both of those have really helped my anxiety level.  The ob reassured me that the results from the ultrasound, indicated the Emersyn is doing well in there, and that I don't have any need for concern - she told me that she no longer worries I may have GD - because Emersyn is growing steadily, rather than having large leaps in weight.  I didn't mind the thought of having to do the GTT again, but it is definately nice to NOT have to worry about it, because I'm getting somewhat sick of going to & from various health clinics/hospitals every week... even though it is part & parcel of being pregnant, especially in a high risk situation.  

 36w3d belly...

My dear blog, I will try to update you more often - I know I have been neglecting you, but the days seem to go by so fast now, and any thought I have of "I must update my blog", seems to be forgotten within the space of a few minutes.  Quite dreadful really!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Hormones & news stories.. not a good mix

A couple of days ago, there was a fatal car crash, not far from where I live - on a road that I drive down usually at least once a week.  A young man (17) was driving down this particular road - after it had been raining, and he was 'drifting' - showing what a BIG man he was.  Well, this BIG MAN then lost control of his car, went up on the sidewalk - and killed a 4 year old boy and badly injured his 6 year old brother, before smashing through someones fence.  

I heard about the incident on the evening news, and as soon as I had heard it, burst into tears.  What an awful thing to happen to that family - losing one precious little guy, and having another in a serious condition... I kept imagining how it would feel, and all I could do was cling on to Gaby, and thank my lucky stars, that she was there with me - alive...  I also felt immense anger at this BIG MAN - a moments carelessness, stupidity, idiocy - whatever you want to call it, ruined a families life forever - and ended an innocent childs life.

Because the BIG MAN that was driving the car isn't 18, he probably won't even go to jail.  Not for any decent amount of time anyway.  I imagine he will have been strongly effected by the incident, and probably feels awful for what he caused, but at the end of the day, he's going to get a smack on the hand, and probably be allowed behind the wheel of a car again in a couple of years.... for ENDING A LIFE...  It just doesn't make sense.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Rambling reality

Today I got the infant carseat, from my parents house, and got it all set up in the car.

And I cried!

For some reason, seeing that little carseat, safely in the car - made me realise that in less than 5 weeks, I am going to be putting a little baby in it...  That baby Emersyn will no longer be in my belly - she will be 'REAL' - right there for me to cuddle & kiss, to snuggle with & talk to in a silly voice.  All those clothes which are tidily put away in the set of drawers, will be used.  The bassinet which has been in my room for months, will have someone sleeping in it.  

.. Emersyn is going to be here soon, and I am so excited... and I am so terrified...  I can't wait for my life to change...  I am scared that my life is going to change...  I cannot wait for Gaby to be a big sister...  I am not ready for Gaby to be a big sister...

It was never this confusing with Gaby... and I don't know why this time is different.  The confusion isn't a bad thing, and I'm in no way not looking forward, to Emersyn finally being here...  My mind is just slightly blown.....

Saturday, May 8, 2010

In-utero hiccups! See them here!

Emersyn had the hiccups & was moving around the womb at the same time...  Naturally, I HAD to video it!

The free gift that has kept on giving - for 45-ish years!

When we were young, my Nana had a small suitcase of wooden, coloured blocks - that we LOVED, I would go as far as to say they were our favourite of the myriad of toys, at Nanas house.  I remember playing with them when I was around 4 - and I remember watching my 'little' cousins playing with them when I was around 12.  There were rectangular blocks, square blocks, half circle blocks & rectangle blocks with an arch in the middle (obviously the half circle blocks, were cut out, leaving these arches)... they were all painted yellow, red & green... very basic, homemade - but still SO much fun.

A couple of years ago, my Nana & Step-Grandad, moved away from Oamaru, and all the children were invited to come & claim various pieces of furniture etc, which were going to be surplus to requirements, here in Christchurch (they moved from a large 2 storey house, to a small villa, at a retirement village).  My parents were awesome enough, as to claim these blocks for Gaby - and when I saw them for the first time, it was like a blast from the past - in a very pleasant, sentimental way!

Lately Gaby has started playing with these blocks all the time - she makes roads, she makes towers, she makes houses, she makes shops - anything that little imagination of hers desires.  We went and visited Nana on Friday - and I was amazed to find she had a whole bunch of the old toys we used to play with, in her wardrobe, for my young cousins to play with.  We got talking about the old toys, and how fun they were, how much we remember - and then I told Nana that Gaby had taken to playing with 'the blocks' - and Nana was amazed.

She then told me where they had come from...
Her & my Grandfather (who passed away, when Dad was 12) had been driving to [or from] Dunedin, and saw a red netting bag, on the side of the road - they pulled over to inspect the bag, and found the blocks inside.. obviously they'd fallen from a trailer, or something along those lines.  They picked the blocks up & took them home with them...  Dad & his 3 siblings played with them for years.  Me, my sister & our cousins played with them for years.. & now generation #3 has started playing with them - and I plan to ensure that generation #4 & onward also get the chance to play with them!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

4 weeks until.. 6 weeks until...

In 4 weeks time I will be considered full term.
In 6 weeks time,  I will be welcoming Emersyn Lily-May in to the world!

This pregnancy has gone so fast, and I am amazed that I'm already in the 'final countdown' stages!  Physically I'm getting a lot more uncomfortable, particularly my ribs - especially when sitting at the computer.  I'm finding it a lot harder to get myself dressed in the morning, and sometimes wish I could ask Gaby to help me.  Emotionally I think I'm doing good!  I've had a few freak outs lately, but I've been working really really hard, on trying to remain calm and rational, when it does happen - and it seems to work.

I'm enjoying my last few weeks, with it just being Gaby & I... trying to do a couple of really special things each week, so that Gaby realises that she is still just as important to me as ever - if not more so.  I am so anxious to find out what life will be like with two children, if it'll be easier than I expect - or harder... I'm guessing it's like the rest of parenting - a lot of awesome, mixed in with some not-so-awesome.  I think that of anything, I am the most excited at seeing Gaby with Emersyn, for the very first time.  Just thinking of that brings tears to my eyes.  I just can't wait to see the exact second where Gaby turns from only child - to big sister....  Ahhh, here come the tears again!

My cousins girlfriend found out a couple of weeks ago that she is pregnant, and I am so over the moon for both of them!  It wasn't planned, and it's been a bit of a rocky road for them, trying to decide what to do - but today S. told me officially, that I WILL be getting a 2nd cousin around Christmas time!  My cousin is going to be an awesome Daddy - he's worried that he isn't ready, but he's the type of guy you just need to look at, to know that he has what it takes.  And S - she is going to be a fabulous Mama!  She's excellent with Gaby, and told me she has already fallen madly in love with the little one growing inside of her.  It's going to be quite exciting, to welcome another baby into the world, so soon after Emersyn!  I really like the fact that Emersyn is going to have a little 'cousin' (3rd cousin), so close in age to her.  It'd be lovely if they could grow up, nice & close!

New beginnings... there is nothing better!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Next month, I shall be a mother of 2!

It is now May 1st, here in New Zealand - so I can officially say "next month, Emersyn will be here!".  How long have I waited to say those words?  It used to feel like this time would never roll around, but here it is... and looking back, the time has actually gone exceptionally fast!!!!!!  I am now 32 weeks pregnant, and it still feels - at times, as if I am counting down the days, until my gender ultrasound!

I had another growth ultrasound on Wednesday, and Emersyn is STILL measuring above the 90th percentile for her weight, and around the 80th for general body size.  The high risk ob said that the body measurements were all great, however she has an enormous head - but when I told her that Gaby had a huge head at birth (37.5cm/15in), she said it is quite possible that I just have babies, with big heads!  If Emersyn's weight is still above the 90th percentile, at the next growth scan, the high risk ob has said she'll send me for the GTT again.  I passed the GTT at 28w, easily - but she said that it (GD) can develop later than 28 weeks.  I don't mind having to do the test again, I'd sooner be safe than sorry... but I think I am just growing a naturally big baby!

I noticed Gaby had a little sore on her mouth, a few days ago - and presumed it was a coldsore... it didn't seem to bother her, but yesterday she started getting new sores, popping up every hour.  That naturally got my spidey/mummy senses tingling, so I took her into the pharmacy & the pharmacist said it looked like impetigo.  Having had that 10 years ago, I knew how unpleasant it was, if it was left untreated - so luckily got her in to the doctor later in the afternoon.  She's now had 4 doses of cream & antibiotics, and her mouth is looking a LOT better - definately less red, and the smaller sores have all but disappeared!

Bit weird to think that there are only another 6 weeks or so, of life being 'just me and Gaby'...  It's all a little bittersweet really....

Friday, April 23, 2010

Balance.. it's all about balance...

I have felt quite bad lately - I have been purchasing a lot of new clothes for Emersyn - albeit second hand clothing - but new clothing all the same... but I haven't been buying a heck of a lot for Gaby, I guess because she HAS clothes, and I'm not in the whole pre-baby "omg I am sooo unprepared" mindset, with her.  So this week, I made an effort to purchase a few items for Gaby - so that she wouldn't feel left out...

... and luckily it worked!  We usually go out on Thursday morning & pick up my various TradeMe (like EBay) auction wins, and Gaby spends time 'ooing and ahhhing' over all the baby clothes, but you can tell she feels a little sad that there is nothing for her.  This week I gave her a package & she looked at me in astonishment "Mummy - this isn't going to fit Emersyn!", so I told her "No Gaby - that's because it's for you!!!", and she yelled at the top of her lungs "THANK YOU SO MUCH MUMMY, YOU ARE THE BEST!!!!"... which of course is always nice to hear, and it makes it seem all the more worthwhile, when she shows so much appreciation.

I guess I get a bit carried away, shopping for Em - and Gaby is so good and doesn't say "but I want something too", so I tend to... well, not forget about her - but just put off buying something for her.  With Emersyn's arrival approaching (under 8 weeks to go!), I have realised that I need to start ensuring Gaby feels just as important as Emersyn, and that her needs aren't put to the side, while I have a little fit of 'must get prepared for baby'.  I have made the decision that for each item I purchase Emersyn - I am going to purchase one for Gaby... I think that is fair - it'll help Gab feel like she's still important, and just as special (because she most certainly is!!!), and probably get me into good habits for when Em actually is here!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Gaby Inquisition

Gaby has reached a new milestone - asking questions!  All of a sudden, I am being asked questions on a regular basis, which there isn't an obvious answer to - and I'm a little unsure how to handle it!

This morning, on the way to preschool, Gaby asked me "Mummy, who made outside??"...  We are not a religious family, so I didn't see it as a chance for a conversation about god, but I did want to answer her question, in a way that would make sense to her, and in a way that would get her attention and encourage her to think further about it.  I ended up talking to her about seeds - how they grow new plants/grass/trees/bushes/flowers/etc, and how they are spread around.. the role the wind plays, the role that birds play, etc etc.  I hoped that it would be a suitable explanation for her - and it seems that it was, because we spoke about it the whole way to preschool (15 minutes or so)!

I do want her to be naturally inquisitive, to feel she can ask questions - so that I can assist her learning, but I'm fast realising that I'm going to need to be armed with resources, for when she asks a question that isn't so easy to answer!!!  It would be easy to just say "I don't know hunny" - and leave it at that, but that isn't really making the most of the opportunity for learning, so I would prefer to be able to say "I don't know - lets have a look at a book/website that will teach us both about how/why/etc ___________ happens".  I see it as a way to encourage her learning, and independent thought - but also another form of activity that we can do together, and bond over.

After our little talk today about seeds, I am going to try and track down some seeds that will grow quickly, inside - so she can see for herself what happens, rather than just taking my word for it.  I have always been more of a visual learner, and it may well be that Gaby is too... and I want to do what I can to help out!

This is the first time I've felt like I'm dealing with a child, rather than just a 'little kid' or 'my 3 year old'.  She is asking mature questions, she is using mature thought... it's all a little scary & a little exciting, at the same time! 

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Really stressing now....

I had my booking appointment for my repeat cesarean, when I had my last ob appointment - at 28w1d.  The ob BOOKED the c/s date then & there, and told me I would get the date sent out to me in the post 'in the next week'.  It is now 11 days post appointment, and still I haven't received a thing in the post.  I wouldn't care so much, but my parents, sister & Jason NEED a date asap, so they can arrange time off work.

I rang the hospital, and ended up getting put through to the doctor I saw at my last appointment (who was not nice)... I asked her what was going on, and she informed me that I "may not get the appointment until 37 weeks"...... THAT is obsurd.  Firstly, why would she tell me I'd get the appointment "in the next week", if that isn't going to be the case.  And secondly, if I don't get the appointment, until 37 weeks - like she's suggesting, that means that my parents, sister & Jason WON'T be able to get time off, when they need it.

What that really means, is that unless the cesarean is on a Saturday or a Sunday
- I won't have anyone to care for Gaby during the day, while I'm in hospital
- I won't have anyone in the operating theatre with me, when I have my cesarean
- I won't have anyone to care for Gaby while I have the cesarean
- Jason won't be able to come down, because flights will be too expensive, so close to the time

???? I 'm trying not to stress out - I really am.  I know that I'm lucky to be given the date beforehand, BUT.... I don't see how I'm meant to have everything planned with only 2 weeks notice....

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Single Parenting... Alone...

I am a single parent - but I never really feel like I'm 'alone' as such, mainly because my parents are so close at hand, and have been such a great support to me, ever since I got pregnant with Gaby.

I realised last night now different it is going to be, when I bring Emersyn home from the hospital.  When I had Gaby - we were living at my parents, so although I was a 'single parent' I wasn't doing it alone - I was living with two other adults, who helped out where they could.  They never took over the role of parent, they never made decisions about Gaby, they never once told me what to do with her - but they were there with advice when I asked for it, they were there with supportive words when I was feeling stuck.. they were just *there*, in a sense 'overlooking' the whole thing.

Baby Gaby & Poppa, relaxing in front of the TV

Baby Gaby & Nan, having a post-work cuddle

With Emersyn, I AM going to be ALONE.  When I come home from the hospital, Mum isn't going to be there cooking dinner, Dad isn't going to be there being funny, Dad won't be there, getting up at 6.45am (for work) when I am up with Emersyn... Mum won't steal her away for hugs, and make it code for "go and have a little time to yourself".  I'm not going to have anyone overlooking me.. or Emersyn... I'm going to be flying solo. 

It's going to be so much different than it was with Gaby, there is just going to be me, to be in charge of every single aspect of our lives!  I am not worried about it, not scared, not wishing it was different - it will be lovely being alone with my girls, but it is going to be DIFFERENT.  My parents are only a ten minute drive away from my house, and I know that they'll still be just as supportive as they were, when I had Gaby... but they won't be RIGHT THERE, when I look left or right, or call out down the hallway.

I have been on my own with Gaby for close enough to 2 1/2 years, but it's going to be weird, being alone with Emersyn, right from the word go.  Of course I have the benefit of having already parented a newborn/infant - so I'm sure it won't be as hard as it was with Gaby, but it will be strange... in a way, it kind of feels as if I've taken off the training wheels... or I'm gong on my first solo flight....

Me & my girl
excited at the prospect of adding another princess to the household

Monday, April 5, 2010

Recipe Time - Salsa Bean Soup...

Something a little different than your usual soup.... nice & healthy.. and very tasty!

15oz Black Beans (rinsed)
8oz Salsa
1/2c Cilantro (chopped)
1/2tsp Chilli Powder
1tbsp Minced Garlic
2c Water
1tbsp Olive Oil

heat olive oil on medium high
add garlic, saute for 30 seconds
add water, salsa, beans & chilli powder
bring to boil, reduce heat
simmer for 2 minutes
take 3 cups of the mixture & blend until smooth, then return to the pot
simmer for another 10 minutes
add cilantro, remove from heat

My Cloth Stash Arrived!

Today my cloth nappies/diapers arrived, from PepeFergs - a glorious big red package, which I knew contained a whole lot of excitement for me!  I decided to use cloth nappies, back when I was trying to figure out how to save myself a few pennies... cloth nappies seemed like the ideal way to go, the only REAL cost is the start up cost, and for me - the startup cost has been under $200.00, for 15 pocket, OSFA nappies - and after that, all I really need to pay for, is the soap powder for washing, and some nappy liners.  

The company who I have been going through, are a local company, and I have nothing but positive feedback about them!  Katrina, who I was dealing with, has been so great to me - even offering to come into town & give me a demonstration, when Emersyn arrives!  This week I need to buy some suitable soap powder, so I can wash them & get them ready for little miss Emmy... probably doesn't NEED to be done this week, but it's so exciting, I just can't wait!

It's going to be interesting to see how much money it really does save me...

Monday, March 29, 2010

my teeny tiny blob is now 3lb1oz

I had my first of 2-3 growth ultrasounds yesterday... the high risk ob wants me to have them, due to the small possibility I have something wrong with my placenta (which caused the bleeding I've had throughout the pregnancy), and also due to the small risk of fetal abnormalities, from the anti-epilpetic medication that I'm on.  I don't mind needing the u/s - I would sooner know if something isn't looking good, than find out after she's born - or have something serious happen toward the end of my pregnancy.

Emersyn was looking fabulous!!!!  She now weighs approximately 3lb1oz, placenta, cervix & amniotic fluid were all looking really good.  I had a feeling everything WOULD be fine, but as usual (for me anyway), there was some pre-ultrasound anxiety & a little paranoia going on - but as soon as I saw her wiggling around on the screen, I knew everything was A-OK.

I see the high risk ob again on Thursday, and presume I'll find out when I will have my next ultrasound, but I'm picking it'll be at around 34 weeks.  My last appointment the ob said that if this one came back perfect, that we would skip the 32 weeks u/s & do one closer to 36 weeks.  Much as it would be lovely to see Emersyn again in 4 weeks, I don't mind if I have to wait until closer to 36 weeks.

It has been amazing to watch Emersyn grow, through my seemingly regular ultrasound.  My first was at 5w6d  & she was barely there.. a tiny little speck on the screen.  8w1d there was an obvious 'head end' and a 'tail end' - but no real definition.  12w1d she looked like a human!  A very obvious head, eyes, mouth, nose, legs, arms, fingers, toes.. a beautiful sight!  19w2d she had grown a lot since I last saw her, and we saw her kicking her little legs, punching with her arms - and got to see that she was a girl.  23w2d - even more growth, her face looked more clear, her movements more precise... amazing.  and then yesterday - 27w5d, we got to see her yawning, poking her tongue out - and kicking herself in the head.  She'd also doubled in weight since the last time I saw her!  It's special to be able to watch this little human developing....

& speaking of the little human, here is a profile picture, from yesterday's ultrasound

Emersyn Georgia-May, 27w5d, 3lb1oz approx

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sadly, last night our precious kitty cat - Fluffy, was killed by a hit & run driver.  A lady who lives over the road happened to be out for a walk and saw the whole thing happen, and got a friend of hers to alert me.  She died almost instantly, so didn't suffer too long.  I did think however that Gaby would suffer for a long time, and had no idea how to tell her.

I ended up just being honest - I told her that someone in a car had hit Fluffy when she was crossing the road, and that Fluffy was now dead - that she wasn't breathing, or moving, that she couldn't run around with Gaby anymore, that Gaby wouldn't be able to play with her, and that she'd be getting buried in the ground at Nan & Poppa's.  I waited for the tears...

No tears followed.  Instead she gave me these little gems....
- "Fluffy is naughty because she didn't look before she crossed the road, and that's what happens if you don't look!"
- "Wow!  Fluffy died really well!!!!!"
- [regarding Poppa digging a hole in his garden for Fluffy] "I want to have a hole too!!!!!!!"

.... she certainly knows how to make light of a sad situation!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Little trip away..

We spent Friday/Saturday at a glorious little place called 'Tikao Bay'... we were very secluded, and it was really lovely!  We went with Mum & Dad, and met [Great] Uncle Steve, his wife Linda, their daughter Tahna, and Steve's eldest daughter - Sharlene there.  it was the first time in a long while that we've spent a decent amount of time with Steve, Linda & Tahna, so it was really nice to have the opportunity to catch up with them!

Gaby had a blast, running around, exploring the area, playing down at the little beach (when the tide wasn't in, anyway) - and there was a huge shed there, which had an abandoned tractor in it, so Gaby had a tonne of fun playing on that!  We didn't do anything specific there - we sat & caught up, we went for little walks, and really just RELAXED, which I think is something we don't do enough of!  It was sad we were only there for 24 hours, but at the same time, it was nice to get home... although I'm sure we could have all handled another night there!

Here are a few photos from our 24 hours, they'll help give you an idea of how gorgeous our surroundings were - and how secluded we were...

Gaby & Nan checking out the scenery, when we first arrived

Gaby getting ready to test the water,
looking out toward Akaroa

Gaby, loving on Nan

Looking across the little beach
to one of the points, across the bay

Poppa, checking out the scenery

Sharlene fishing, 
looking down other end of the bay
(toward Akaroa)

 The sun starting to come up, 
on Saturday morning

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Super Proud Mama Moment!

For awhile I've been wondering if Gaby has been wetting her nappy during the night, simply because it's a nappy - and that is what you do.  It has always been a little dream of mine, to have Gaby out of nappies completely, by the time Emersyn is born - just to save that extra few $$$ a week.

So, night before last, I asked Gaby if she wanted to wear knickers, or nappies to bed - and she told me she wanted to wear knickers.  I talked to her about how if she wore knickers, it'd mean she'd have to get up and go to the toilet if she needed to during the night, and that if she wet her knickers, she'd get a wet bed as well.  She seemed pretty happy about wearing knickers, so I let her.  Tried to wake her up at 10.30 when I went to bed, so she could go to the toilet - but that child is impossible to wake up!  So I left her, and hoped for the best.  Some point between then and 2am she hopped in my bed with me, and at 2am we were both awake so I asked if she wanted to go to the toilet.  She did - so I took her, and she then asked for a nappy.  I put one on her, we went back to sleep - and when she woke in the morning, her nappy was wet.

Last night we did the same thing, discussed nappy vs knickers, I reminded her about having a wet bed etc, but she still seemed pretty confident about wearing knickers.  10.30 came and again I woke her up - but this time I made sure she woke up, carried her to the toilet, sat her on it.. and she proceeded to throw a huge tantrum.  She got back in bed with her knickers on & I figured I'd just take her when she woke up during the night.  She was in with me by then - and I kept waking up to check that she was still dry - I managed to lose about 50% of my normal sleep, because I was so worried about her wetting!  

But at 6.45am she woke up properly - as did I - and she was DRY!!!!!!!!!!  I was so proud of her (AM so proud of her), and gave her a big hug & kept telling her how great it was, how proud I was of her, that it was such a 'big girl' thing to do....  She then got up & went to the toilet & was on her merry way.....

I'm hoping that this is the beginning of some form of consistently being dry at night - it'd be so fabulous if it was!!!!!!  But it's not something I'm going to force.  If she decides tonight she wants to wear a nappy, that'll be fine..  If she decides she wants knickers, that'll be great!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Gaby's exciting news...

Yesterday I got a phone call from the administrator at Gaby's preschool, and it turns out that a place has opened up in the Flintstones part of the preschool - which is the LAST area of preschool, before they start school - and they would love Gaby to take the place!!!!!!!!

It's bittersweet.. when she started out, she was a Muppet Baby... then she went to the Pooh Bears... then she moved on to the other end of the preschool & became a Bananas In Pyjama's kid.... and now.. *gulp* they want her to move in with the big kids... she's getting so big, and old and... she really isn't my baby anymore!  Of course it's also very exciting, that the teachers feel she's ready to make the move, I didn't think she'd be moving there until she was closer to 4 - she's not even 3 1/2 yet!!!!!  

Like I said to my parents - the next step after she's been a Flintstone, is SCHOOL!!!!!!!!


Sunday, March 14, 2010

100 days to go!

Today I am 25w5d pregnant - and according to my ticker, have a mere 100 days to go, until Emersyn's due date!  I guess technically I only have 86-93 days to go, because I'll be having a c/s @ 38-39 weeks, but still... 100 days until my actual EDD is pretty cool!  

I am feeling good, a little more uncomfortable in bed at night, a little more uncomfortable when walking around, or standing around... but in general I feel rather good!  I presumed I'd have had sciatica by now - I had it from about 15w with Gaby, but so far, nothing!  My appetite is back, however I am finding it increasingly harder to be able to eat a decent sized meal... I often find myself eating about 1/4 of my meal, putting it in the microwave - and then going back a little later for more.. and I guess that's the way to do it about now!

As far as I know, Emersyn is doing well.  She is still active and kicking me - which is lovely, nothing nicer than feeling her kicking in there, to make me feel positive, and like this pregnancy is going to have a positive outcome. I know that a lot of people by this point, won't be expecting anything to go wrong, but with my anxiety, past losses - and I guess also through knowing various members who've had late losses & stillbirths, on JM, it does make me realise that things are never for sure.  All I can do is take it a day at a time, and that is what I'm trying to do.

I am however 110% that I don't want any further pregnancies, and that I will be getting a tubal ligation at the time I have my cesarean.  I don't feel that it is fair to put Gaby - and Emersyn, through 9 months of having a stressed out, anxious, terrified mother... 9 months is a long time in the life of a child, and I know I wouldn't feel right if I spent that time concentrating on something that *could* happen, rather than spending the time enjoying my two girls.  I need to talk to the obstetrician at the hospital when I go for my next high risk appt, as they are going to schedule my cesarean - and will be the ones who say yay or nay to my request for a tubal ligation.  My midwife seems to think they won't have any issues with it, being that I'm 26 & (will) have had 2 children by that time... and then adding in my history of (early) losses, my anxiety & depression... she thinks it won't be something they'll fight me about.

Can't believe that next week I'll officially be in the 3rd trimester!!!!!!  Seemed like a lifetime away, back when I found out in October... but the weeks seems to be speeding by, I'm sure the point will come where I will wish that time could slow down a little.  End of the day though, I can't wait for June, and to hear those first cries, from my baby girl.  

*cue the tears*

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Gaby & Lily - BFF's! (onto the next stage of development)

Gaby has her first official BFF! (Best Friend Forever).

There is a little girl at her preschool - Lily, and Gaby has been talking about her for a while now, and a couple of weeks ago said to me "Mum, Lily is my best friend!".  It was the first time I'd heard her mention 'best friend' or anything of the sort, and almost made me cry a little, because it means she's moving on to a whole other stage of her social & emotional development!

I took Gaby's profile book home from preschool last Wednesday, and in the back was a story about Gaby & Lily (they take photos of the kids & write stories explaining what they were doing)... In this story, Gaby & Lily were going to the beach, but first they had to go to the supermarket to buy bread, toothpaste and toilet paper, eventually they made it to the beach.  Was really really nice seeing the photos - it was like being given a glimpse into Gaby's life at preschool.  Her and Lily were both wearing the dress ups - shoes with a little heel, big floppy hats & dresses over their normal clothes... VERY cute.

It's so amazing to actually notice a change in Gaby's development.  Studying early childhood education for the 2 years I did, and then human development for a further year, I learnt a lot about the various theories of human development - it was something that really interested me, and I managed to keep it all in my information bank....  The biggest change in development I have noticed, is Gaby's play & choices are becoming more 'gender appropriate' - at preschool she is now crazy about Lily, rather than her boyfriend Kayne, rather than playing on the bikes, she plays in the family corner, plays with the dolls, dresses up... & I've noticed she's also very much into the "I was the Mummy and Kayne was the Daddy", whereas a few months ago, she would have been the Daddy & Kayne might have been the Mummy.  I guess now is an important time to try to not label various jobs, activities, roles as 'for girls' or 'for boys'....

Monday, March 8, 2010

Cool JM feature, that I had no idea about!

I rarely look at the right toolbar on JM, which contains links to various tools, articles etc... however when I saw one about fetal development month by month, I clicked on.... and then noticed a link entitled "Pregnancy Week by Week" - I am very interested in reading week-specific information, so this link seemed like a must-click-link to me!

It is awesome, very well set out and has a lot of interesting information, about how you may be feeling physically & emotionally each week, about various things you should be thinking about, or talking to your LMC about at that point of pregnancy

this is the link:
Pregnancy - Week by Week / JustMommies

I am now bookmarking this link & will use it as another way to countdown the final weeks of this pregnancy!

Friday, March 5, 2010

High risk ob update - a positive one!

I had an appointment with the high risk ob clinic, on Thursday.  I wasn't looking too forward to it, considering my last appointment there, was such a let down - and such a hassle, with the ob being a total schmuck. 

My appointment was for 2.20pm & around 2.30pm I was taken in - and the ob I saw was a different ob from last time!!!!!  She was lovely - very friendly, and spoke with me, rather than at me - she also spoke at my level, rather than muttering all these medical terms and acting like I wasn't even there.  She asked how I'd been, told me it's great that I've had no further bleeding, and that Emersyn's movements are stronger.. she then did my b/p etc, and all was well.  When it came time to listen to the heartbeat, we were listening for 5 minutes!  She kept picking up the h/b, but it was 'background' noise & she took her time finding the h/b in a position where it was the loudest sound - she then did a trace & her h/b was around 150bpm.  Absolutely perfect!

I expected I would be told I could leave after that, but then she started discussing my growth ultrasounds with me.  Growth ultrasounds?  I had no idea I was going to have growth ultrasounds - and told her so, she was very surprised the ob I saw last time hadn't thought it was important to do some growth u/s from 28w onward - didn't surprise me though.  She said that the bleeding I had, although it was related to the BV, it could also be related to an issue with the placenta, that wouldn't start becoming obvious until I was closer to my EDD, and also with my epilepsy medication, there is a small risk of fetal abnormalities, so she also wanted to monitor for that reason.  So from 28w onward, I will be having growth u/s every 4 weeks - at 28, 32 & 36 weeks.  She said that if the 28w u/s shows everything looks great, then they will probably skip the 32 weeks u/s, and do one closer to 36 weeks.  I don't mind either way though - I get to see Emersyn 2-3 more times before she is born!

So all in all, it was a great appointment :)  I go back in 4 weeks for my next appt (and will probably have my u/s a couple of days prior)....

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Kids say the darndest (most embarassing!) things

Gaby has always been very talkative - I have always been so proud of her language development, to be honest, it has blown me away.  However I learnt today, it does have its downside...

We were at our usual Friday visit to the mall with Nan (my Mum) - Gaby told me she wanted to go to the toilet.  The parents room was busy, so I just took her to the normal public toilets & stood at the door while she did her business...  All of a sudden she YELLS out to me:
"Mummy - I just did poos that was so big, it splashed my bottom and vagina!!!!"

... I heard a few giggles & a few gasps from the surrounding stalls - naturally the toilets were full, so probably around 15 people heard this little outburst....  Gaby came out looking very proud of herself, and then when a couple of ladies were pointing at her & laughing, she said to me "Mummy why are those ladies being nosy??"... I quickly washed her hands and we bolted out of there...  But I'm sure she left a lasting impression on every person in that public toilet!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

I'm sorry I don't live up to your standards...

warning:  I'm pregnant & hormonal, very emotional & having a bad day.....

Ever since I was a little kid, I knew that I was the failure of the family, the one who would disappoint everyone, would never amount to much in the eyes of everyone else...

& here I am today, 26 - and bawling my eyes out, because it has never been more clear to me, that my worries when I was a little girl, turned out to be 100% spot on.  The only people in my family who I feel do love me for me, and don't wish I was anything BUT myself, are my parents - and I guess that is a good thing, or pure luck...

Here is a list of the ways in which I am sub-par as a human being - in their eyes

  1. I'm 26, and have never been married - was briefly engaged - to a woman - so obviously that doesn't count - I must have just been 'going through a phase'
  2. I have two children, who have two different fathers & I'm in a relationship with neither.  Never mind that it is in my best interests, and my girls best interests, for me to not be in relationships with their fathers
  3. I'm obese - I will never be skinny, I will never be athletic and toned, and when I do lose weight, why congratulate me?  I'll obviously just put the weight on again.. support & encouragement isn't really that important!
  4. My longest relationship has been 15 months, and obviously I did things wrong, otherwise, why would he have broken up with me?  Surely the problem wasn't with him!  Must have been Emma
  5. I am living off the domestic purposes benefit, rather than working - who cares that it was a decision I made, because I felt it was best for *my* daughter, to have her mother with her as much as possible in the early years of her life - obviously it'd be better for her to only see her mother at nights, in the same way she only sees her father one day a week
  6. I don't have a huge career, I haven't finished a university degree, I guess the fact that I am happy working an average job, for average pay doesn't mean anything.  I should aspire to be a doctor, a lawyer, a nurse, a teacher... something exciting and interesting - definately a job I can't leave at work at the end of the day, something that I have to bring home with me, so my children get a little of my attention, but work gets more....
  7. I'm not a 100% straight, heterosexual woman!  Obviously I feel more attracted to women than men, just because I can't find a nice man to settle down with.. yes, that's got to be it!

I hate that I can't be loved because I am simply *me*...  My sister, my cousins - they all have their flaws, their dirty little secrets - but because they're living the life everyone thinks they should live, well - it doesn't matter!!!  Because I am happy being a Mum - and putting that before having a career, it doesn't mean that I don't have aspirations - I do, it also doesn't mean that I am unhappy with my life - because I am NOT. 

Everyday with Gaby is a fabulous day, even if I am feeling down, just looking at her makes me smile, hearing the words "I love you Mummy" makes everything great again, seeing her accomplish something new makes me feel wonderful about myself - reiterates that I am a good Mum, and that my daughter isn't missing out on anything, just because she doesn't have a 'normal' family (ie Mum/Dad living together).  Everytime Emersyn kicks me, I feel a huge surge of love, and can't help but smile - everytime I think about meeting her, tears come to my eyes, because I cannot wait for that day.  Being a Mum IS what makes me happy, it's what I feel I'm meant to be doing.  But why isn't that good enough for everyone else??

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Recipe - Crockpot Cola Chicken

This is a favourite with my family - it is SO easy to make, and is really healthy.  From memory, it is worth about 4 points on the Weight Watchers Points system (though that isn't counting the rice you have with it)...  I dare you to try it - you won't be disappointed!

Cola Chicken

1 whole chicken (approx 3lb), OR chicken pieces, OR, chicken breasts
1 cup (tomato) ketchup
1 large onion - thinly sliced (optional)
1 cup of cola

  • Wash & pat chicken dry
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Put chicken in crockpot, with onions on top
  • Add cola & ketchup
  • Cook on low for 6-8 hours

Best served with rice, or mashed potato
I prefer it with the chicken breasts

"week 22 - you may have noticed your centre of gravity has changed"

In one of my pregnancy books, for 22 weeks I read "you may have noticed your centre of gravity has changed", and I figured that yes mine had, but not substantially.

That was until today when I was taking an armload of stuff (ie crap) out to the garage to put in the rubbish bin - and managed to fall down the stairs!!!!  I don't know how I did it, but I think my foot may have slipped or something - and next thing I knew I was fall off the side of the steps, scraping my toes, feet, legs & hands on the way down.. I kind of dived along the ground, before rolling onto my side.  My first worry was that I'd hurt the baby, but I didn't hit my belly at all, and didn't really fall from a massive distance.  I got inside and admittedly was crying - a huge chunk of nail came off one of my big toes, and then a big chunk of skin off the side of my opposite little toe.. one of my feet has a big graze, as does the shin & knee of the opposite leg!

Gaby was a good little paramedic, she got me some toilet paper and the bandaids - but then she looked at me with a very serious look on her face & said to me...
"Mummy - that is why we don't wear jandles [thongs, flip-flops] isn't it"
that was admittedly very cute, and made me laugh - she sounded so very grown up!

I think from now on, I'm not going to carry any big loads of 'stuff' down the stairs, I will have to do it in little trips I think!!!  I'm just glad that none of my neighbours from the three surrounding units saw it happen - wasn't exactly my most graceful move!  I've not fallen down stairs in YEARS... but now with all this added weight in front, I'm obviously not as stable as I once was!

I have had a few movements since it happened, so am hoping that means that everything is okay in there... I will keep note of her movements for the next day though, incase there is an obvious decrease.. but I'm thinking that because I landed on my hands & knees, that everything should be okay..