Tag Archives: Planning birth

Braxton Hicks? Dropping?

29 Dec

Less than 40 days to go! 38, in fact. Woah!

I wonder what does it feel when the baby drops? I tried googling this question, but all I could find was forum threads and blog posts. The know-it-all websites like baby center and such are all mysteriously quiet on the subject.

The reason I am wondering is that I have more pressure down below – partially at the front of my belly (especially keen when I stand up after having been seated for a while) and in the rectal area. I am waddling even more and feel much more discomfort in the hip area.

I cannot tell whether the belly looks any lower, though. It doesn’t seem so. But the pressure has definitely increased!

I am 34.5 weeks – so this feels a bit premature (we were told dropping happens 2-4 weeks prior to labour in first time mothers). However, I got a big baby… might he already be ready to get out??

I also think that I am, in fact getting the BH contractions. I thought I am not, but yesterday I placed a hand on my belly and thought: what on earth is THAT?! – so big the hard part of the baby seemed (his bum is much, much smaller). But then I started palpating the belly, trying to investigate what’s going on there and realized the whole uterus was rock-hard. Just as they described it in the prenatal classes. I simply didn’t feel any tightening or anything else of the sort.

Was this a BH contraction? I don’t know. Probably yes – why else would my whole belly go rock-hard? So my uterus has started its training for the Big Day.

That, plus the baby being head down for a while now… who knows when the kid might decide to arrive!

Hmmm. I should go look at myself in the mirror more thoroughly, trying to decide whether the dropping has occurred. Too bad I don’t take weekly belly pics – the last pic I have is 4 weeks old. Cannot credibly compare…

34 Weeks – and Merry Christmas

26 Dec

34 weeks today.

Life is getting harder. Well, heavier. Getting up from the couch is hard, I have to push myself with my arms – or use my hubby’s help. Getting up from bed is even harder. Rolling onto another side is often easier with standing up on all fours then with actual rolling through lying on the back for a second. Getting up the stairs is a chore. Eating leaves me most of the time with an overstuffed feeling – especially on days like today.

Oh yes – Merry Christmas, by the way 😉

Got a very nice xmas present from a friend today – a templated baby’s first year book. It has pages like “the first time you walked was…” or “the first time you ate solids…” – and empty spaces for photos. Very cute.

My hubby got me (among other gifts) a small knitting kit to knit baby booties. Although the instructions turned out to be far more complicated than expected (he assumed it was a beginner’s set – and I haven’t held knitting needles since I was about 13 or so).

Funny. Our baby isn’t even born yet, but he\s already – sort of – getting presents 😉

How fun the next xmas is going to be! He’ll be quite big by the time. Definitely crawling – maybe even walking! Just imagine!

I roasted a chicken today for the first in my life! Not turkey – since there were only 4 meat-eaters among us. I stuffed it with apples and sewed it tightly closed using my curved needle – the one I used to re-upholster the glider 😉 It turned out quite good. I am proud of myself.

I got briefly scared today. Baby was doing some weird twitching and then abruptly went very still. I got this fear that he died in there – I don’t know why. And I massaged my belly, and pressed on his little bum, and tried to find his feet and press – but he remained quiet. I was having an internal fight: to freak out and go to the hospital immediately – or to be rational and stay put. The baby started moving again and all is well. I have no idea why I freaked out all of a sudden…

My mom thinks that I will go in labour earlier than I am supposed to – because of the size of the baby. Well, many people seem to think that. But I haven’t heard of anyone going in labour early because of the size issues. Only having c-sections because of the size issues.


Yesterday was a big laundry day. I washed all baby clothes, towels, bed sheets, etc. I also sorted all the other clothes that we got as gifts or hand-me-downs for older ages and labeled the boxes and put them away. Got my baby cooshie changer today (my friend bought it for me – the store was around the corner from where she lives).

Need to wash hand-me-down toys (most of them cannot be machine-washed, so I’ll have o spend some time wiping them with soap and water). I also need to finally make the decision and choose and order fabrics for the nursery curtains. The crib should arrive in early January.

We are getting closer and closer and closer.

Getting Closer to the “We Are Ready!”

23 Dec

Today was a tiresome day. Big grocery shopping – I am having friends over on the 25th. And big baby-related shopping. Hubby is freaking out that there are so many things to be done, so even though there is no real need to buy these things right now, I decided to provide him some relief.

5 hours later – I am home.

Grocery store was a ZOO. Insanity.

And then I went shopping for nursing pads, high-waist cotton panties, buttoned shirts, baby mittens, hypoallergenic laundry detergent, etc.

There are a few items we still need to buy – like a baby video monitor. They’re all ridiculously expensive in Canada (about 40% above the US prices!) and we cannot decide which one to buy. We bought one when we were in states – and we returned it the very next day. The batteries didn’t hold the charge – and all the reviewers online were complaining about the same thing.

I still need to decide which fabrics to order for the nursery curtains – which I will be sewing myself.

I need to do the big laundry and to pack the L&D bag. And then the remaining things will be small ones.

50 Days to Go – Yikes!

17 Dec

Yikes! Only 50 days! *looking at the long to-do and to-buy lists*

I am starting to worry. Not about the pains of labour, though. Two things worry me the most: will the baby be healthy? Will he be okay? Won’t he have any mental or physical illnesses?

Another thing that worries me – to a much lesser extent – is after-labour pains, discomforts, etc.

Somehow the labour itself still doesn’t quite captivate my attention, imagination and fears. I see it as “well, there will be a very painful day, but it’ll be just one day, I can live through that”.

While the past-labour bloody discharge, the burning of peeing, the pains of stitches (perineal or c-section), the engorgement, etc. – that’s what worries me. Will I be strong or will I break down into hysterics and tears and self-pitying?

Pre-labour worries me less, but there are questions. Like whether I should start placing a waterproof pad in bed – just in case my water breaks down in the middle of the night? I want to protect the mattress 😉

I also wonder if no Braxton-Hicks means anything? Aren’t they supposed to “train” your uterus for the real labour? And why doesn’t my uterus exercise? Is it a sign that I won’t go in labour just like my sis – who didn’t have contractions even after the administration of oxytocin?

In short, I am starting to worry as it gets closer…

Packing the L&D Bag

7 Dec

At the prenatal classes, they told us our bags should be packed my 32 weeks – which we will reach on Sunday. I did some research, asked around, and here’s the list of what it looks like I should be bringing with me:


  1. insurance cards (government/private)
  2. tooth brush
  3. toothpaste
  4. hair brush
  5. deodorant
  6. laptop?
  7. book
  8. crocs (or other rubber shoes… easier to clean, if needed!)
  9. warm socks (epidural might cause severe feelings of being cold)
  10. nursing bra
  11. huge pads
  12. nursing bra pads
  13. some liquid snacks like yogurt
  14. nipple cream
  15. night gown/pj’s? Not sure, they say the one that hospital provides is good enough
  16. breast pump?
  17. I assume I won’t need change clothes… I can go home wearing the same ones?
  18. phone
  19. disposable panties? or cotton panties with a high waist In case of c-section)
  20. hair band (you feel sooo hot while in labour)
  21. lip balm (the intense breathing cracks your lips)
  22. eye patch and ear plugs (hoping for a bit of a snooze while the epidural is in)
  23. squeeze bottle (a stream of warm water eases off the pain of peeing)


  1. some snacks
  2. book
  3. tooth brush
  4. toothpaste
  5. photocamera
  6. spare batteries!!!
  7. spare memory card!!!
  8. slippers
  9. extra clothes
  10. cash
  11. blanket and pillow?


  1. car seat
  2. diapers (15?)
  3. wet wipes
  4. bum cream
  5. 2-3 receiving blankets
  6. 3 changes of clothes
  7. winter thingy for outings
  8. warm hat
  9. indoors hat
  10. mitts?
  11. pacifier? (they said it’s bad if you plan to breastfeed)
  12. bottle? (ditto)

30 Weeks (Yesterday)

28 Nov

I was away for a few days visiting some relatives – so didn’t post the 30-week post on time! Nevertheless.

I am 30 weeks! Feels like a milestone. Three quarters of the way there. 10 weeks to go. Time is running out!

I was slightly worried about flying at this stage – especially on those tiny propeller airplanes. I don’t think I have ever flied on such a plane. It’s noisy. On the way there baby really did not appreciate all the goings on. he moved and kicked and just generally protested. We were sitting tight next to the turbine, it was really loud. On the way back, he was fine – just his usual active self 😉 But I’d rather feel him being active – and know he’s doing fine.

Got a bit freaked out by a slight lower back pain after we landed – after all, they say it might be a labour sign. But all is well.

While traveling, I started feeling really drained and exhausted – although we didn’t do much. Stayed at our relatives’ place, ate some Turkey, talked, played with their kids… But I felt like taking a nap all the time! I guess this is what trimester numero three is all about?

And from what I am hearing, it will only go down the hill from there. It will get much worse before the baby learns to sleep through the night. Oh well.

I also had an ugly dream where I wake up and discover my legs covered in ugly varicose veins that looked like warms. You know, the kind they dig from the ground for fishing. Yuck. I was relieved to wake up and find my legs fairly normal. there are a couple of spider-veins spots, but that’s about it. For now.

Got more hand-me-down baby stuff from our relatives. Yay!

We also bought a video monitor by Safety 1st – and it was ATROCIOUS. We returned it. The sound and image were good, bu the parent device had defective batteries. The very moment I unplugged the batteries (having charged them for the prescribed 12 hours), it just switched off. I went online and discovered that EVERYONE was complaining about the batteries. What’s the point of the wireless monitor if it is not, in fact, wireless? So we’ll have to do more research and find something else.

Anyway. Before this post gets too long-winded, I’m gonna end it. 30 weeks – yay!

Prenatal Class #5 – Tour

22 Nov

Today was our fifth prenatal class – first we saw a video of a c-section (which was really not as good as the one I saw on baby centre… it was filmed way too far from the epicentre and staff were blocking the view all the time, couldn’t really see anything.

And then we had a tour of the facilities. I heard they’re opening a new wing, but the grand opening has been pushed back – I won’t be able to hold the baby for that long… And the old facilities are just okay. Dark, low-ceiling corridors. Tiny birthing room with flowery wallpaper. REALLY tiny. Shared bathroom – with no shower/tub.Did you know they don’t actually wash babies? Just wipe them with towels. And overall, bathing babies is unnecessary – wiping under-diaper area as pretty much sufficient.

Afterbirth rooms are a bit bigger – and they have a lovely view of Lake Ontario. Again, shared bathroom and no shower. The bassinet is a see-through plastic crate. That’s nice – I will be able to look at the baby next to me as the baby sleeps 😉

But you know what? I bet while I will be in labour, I won’t pay much attention to wallflowers. And I bet after giving birth, I will have my eyes only for my son.

What is really good is that all the staff seemed really nice and smiley and friendly. that’s more important than rooms!

Note to self: bring some “homey” stuff like a cheerful throw and a robe. And a magic bag – to heat the aching lower back up until they administer the epidural.

Anyway, seeing the rooms made the idea of having to go through labour more real. It still feels vague with over 2 months to go, but the reality of this event is starting to hit me. I am focusing on the moment when they will place my baby boy on my chest. I winder – am I going to cry?..

Upholstering the Chair, Day Two – and More Baby Stuff

21 Nov

Bought a curved needle today. The upholstering is moving along much easier now! I actually felt really cool and in the know when I walked into a fabric store and inquired whether they have curved needles and was immediately lead to where they were.

The fabric is pastel green with some green-blue-orange snails and turtles. So I am thinking turtles and snails are going to be the nursery theme. I now have grandiose plans of MAKING snail and turtle toys. We’ll see about that 😉

Anyway, I am enjoying my upholstery project – I feel satisfied and accomplished. I am taking step-by-step pictures – which I will share when I’m done, whenever that happens 😉 I will be pretty busy for the next 2 weeks – but I definitely am going to finish this!

On another bright note, hubby spoke to his colleague. The colleague inquired whether we have all the stuff we need for the baby’s arrival. he said – well, only car seat and crib among the big items. And just like that, out of nowhere, she offered to give away her car seat!

We got so much hand-me-downs – and gifts – that crib + mattress is going to be the ONLY big item we’ll purchase. Which releases funds to enjoy decorating the nursery! Yay!

Anyway. I am in a happy mood today. Even though I woke up at 5:30 today and couldn’t fall back asleep. Baby calisthenics didn’t help, either 😉 Off to bed!

Baby Stuff

19 Nov

This is the pile of presents and hand-me-downs in the baby shower aftermath. It’s all sitting in the living room since at some point we will be painting the nursery and this will be in the way there, then.

There aren’t many things that we still need to get. Crib. Carseat. A bit more sheets for the crib. I also wanna buy the walky-talky-mit-camera to keep an eye on my little one.

And that’s it, I think.

The hand-me-down clothes will have to be washed. By the way, do I have to use a special detergent? And do I have to wash baby clothes separately from ours?

I am actually itching to start redoing the nursery. But first I need to buy some fabric to redrape the gliding chair and to make curtains…

Prenatal Class #4

16 Nov

We had another prenatal class yesterday – this one focused on labour with intervention, ranging from epidural, to induction, to c-section.

I have to say, it was disturbing.

Epidural looks scary. As opposed to the natural labour we watched on a tape last week, here the woman had an IV drip, all sorts of monitors, and even a catheter (ew) – and she was strapped to the bed as she couldn’t walk any longer. And the epidural itself didn’t look like picnic either – the needle and all. To be fair, the instructor told us that compared to contractions you’re experiencing, epidural is really piece of cake. So it shouldn’t be all that frightening when we get there.

The c-section, on the opposite, sounded quite good. Sounds like it all happens in a pretty jovial atmosphere, it’s not harsh lights of an open heart surgery – although it still holds all the risks of a major surgery. Did you know the c-section lasts an hour, but the baby is born within the first 7 minutes? It’s the stitching back that takes really long. And in case of a c-section, they usually give the baby to the dad for the skin-to-skin contact that is so important. And c-section babies have more mucous after they’re born (naturally delivered babies get most of mucous squeezed out of them as they pass through the birth canal).

Induction, apparently, while speeding up the process – makes it more painful. Or, actually, no one really knows – they say that maybe it’s just that with normal labour the build-up of pain is more gradual – while with induction it’s like – BAM! – and you’re in hard-core active labout contractions.

I spoke to my sister about this class today and got concerned. I knew that her first baby was a c-section, but never thought to ask what went wrong there (I was 12 when my nephew was born, see). It turns out her water broke, but she never got contractions. Even after induction. So after 12 hours they had to perform the c-section.

And my mom had problems with both of us with insufficient labour activity – she did deliver us both vaginally, but vacuums and forceps needed to be used. her contractions weren’t powerful enough, either.

I wonder if this is genetic? Something to discuss with my OB next time I see her. My PCOS already muddled my brain enough for it to not even consider sending ovulation signals to my body – what if it fails when it is time to onset contractions? It won’t be the end of the world – but I have to be prepared that I might need intervention. And that my recovery will be longer than average.

Lots of things to consider…