Tag Archives: week 32

Let It Snow!

9 Dec

It is snowing – finally! Well, “light flurries” according to the weather network. What an abnormal weather we are enjoying this year! A week ago it was still +10C. This will be a story to share with our baby boy.

I always hear the story of the snowy winter my mom was pregnant with me – one night so much snow fell, that my dad with three neighbours cooperated to dig out one of their cars and carpool to work (cars were covered with snow up to their roofs).

And when my sister was pregnant with her second one, there was an unusually warm fall – even in November she would still occasionally lounge outside in the backyard.

So the year I am pregnant, we’ve enjoyed an unusually warm fall, too. But I am ready for some snow now – it’s xmas time! We already bought the tree (not decorated yet) and the music is on. I even already had my corporate xmas party. Snow is the missing element!

While I was typing this, it stopped snowing. But at least it did snow, even if a bit, even if for a short little while. Having a winter due date, I am excited for the winter to come. Maybe for the first time ever 😉

What’s on the Inside of the Belly Button?

8 Dec

All of a sudden, I had to find out today: what’s on the other side of a belly button? After viewing it for years as just a scar from where the umbilical cord used to be, I thought: well, while I was still a fetus – that cord must have lead somewhere? So it must have been attached to something on the inside?

I researched the subject RIGHT AWAY. I was too intrigued to find out – and sort of shocked that not only I have never known anything about it – I have never even thought to wonder about it!

Apparently, there are two arteries and one vein in the umbilical cord. The vein supplies the fetus with oxygenated, nutrient-rich blood from the placenta and then the fetal heart pumps “deoxygenated, nutrient-depleted” blood through the umbilical arteries back to the placenta.

Within the fetus, the umbilical vein continues towards the liver, where it splits into two. One of these vein branches joins a vein which carries blood into the liver. The second vein branch allows the majority of the incoming blood to bypass the liver and flow towards the heart. After the birth and cutting of the cord, the veins close up and degenerate into the round ligament of the liver.

The two umbilical arteries branch from the main pelvic arteries and pass on either side of the bladder. Part of each umbilical artery closes up  and degenerates into some other ligaments (didn’t quite understand), while the remaining sections are retained as part of the circulatory system.

Huh. So that explains why my lady parts respond to the stimulation of my belly button – they are connected!

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:

FOR 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)

FOR HUBBY:

  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?

FOR BABY:

  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)

Prenatal Class #6 – Breastfeeding

6 Dec

We had the 6th, and final, prenatal class today – it was devoted to the topic of breastfeeding.

We went through all the benefits of breastfeeding (immune system, comfort, quicker weight loss…), watched some videos… Most of the class was not helpful – I already read all this.

What was helpful is her telling us why our mothers and older siblings had so much problem with breastfeeding: because back then babies were taken away for 4 hours right after birth and were brought back every 4 hours. Babies were often given formula and water – from bottles.And the way moms were instructed to breastfeed… they used to squeeze the nipple in what was a called a cigarette hold! I bet it hurt. I bet the baby couldn’t squeeze much milk. And – goodness! –  “cigarette hold” is just wrong on so many levels…

What was also helpful is her giving us a very good comparison: it might seem like baby is not getting enough nutrition those first few days when all you have is colostrum – but actually colostrum is very, very reach – like concentrated frozen juice. The concentrated frozen juice is so sweet that you simply can’t have too much of it – same with colostrum. So in the first day it’s okay if you get only 1 wet diaper (well, not you… the baby). Then there should be 2 on the second day, 3 on the third, and so on until day 7 – but pooping should be at least a daily occasion.

I do suspect this might have been the reason my mom and sis had ‘insufficient milk supply’ – their breasts simply weren’t stimulated for milk production because they were not let to breastfeed on demand.

Using real-sized baby dolls and experimenting with some breastfeeding positions was also helpful – before I only read about these positions, but having a “baby” in your hands is different, much more helpful.

Other than that it was okay at best. Oh, and the argument that breastfeeding is “cheap”? Puh-lease. Breast milk is NOT free – you have to eat much more to have enough calories to produce milk. We do pay for that extra food that turns into extra calories that turn into milk. Jussaying.

OB Appointment #5

5 Dec

Had my OB appointment today. It turns out the secretary was wrong and my glucose test was a bit off. Not by too much – the OB thinks it probably is due to the fact that I didn’t fast (far from it… I took the test in the afternoon, having had breakfast and lunch) – and it’s off by just a bit. Regardless, she wants me to repeat the test – will do on Wednesday.

I’m on to biweekly meetings now – will see her on the 19th again. Feels weird to finally be there. Feels like home stretch.

She confirmed that baby is head down. And that he measures 1-2 weeks ahead. Actually, this was the first time anyone cared to measure my belly with a measuring tape. I don’t know what the numbers were (didn’t ask), but she “has a feeling he’s gonna be a big one”. Her suggestion? If he’s meant to be big, he will be – but I can lower my carbs intake to prevent him from getting even bigger. Apparently, carbs are the primary baby growth promoter. Other than sweets, I am not eating much carbs – so I guess I’ll have to cut my sweets intake 😦

Blood pressure is “nice and low”.

My weight gain seems to be normal to her (I was 61 kg pre-pregnancy; I am about 74 kg now).

For my leg cramps (have I mentioned I am getting leg cramps? lovely stuff that wakes you up in the middle of the night) she suggested magnesium supplements.

She said that low labour activity (both my mom and my sis had problems… my sis didn’t have contractions even after oxytocin! and my mom’s contractions weren’t strong enough) is not necessarily hereditary. She said often if your body knows the baby is too big to go through your pelvis, the contractions won’t come. And most babies in my family are big. Did I ever mention I was 9.7 pounds?..

The low milk supply, on the other hand, is hereditary (both my mom and my sis didn’t have enough). But there isn’t much I can do to prevent this from happening – just be ready that I might need to use formula in addition to breastfeeding.

All in all, everything seems to be fine. Tomorrow is our last prenatal class – and we’ll submit our pre-admission form to the hospital. It’s getting close. Precisely 2 months to go (I am due on Feb. 5).

31 Weeks

4 Dec

31 weeks today. So what is happening?

Don’t panic if you feel your baby moving less frequently now. She’s got less room to move in your uterus and can’t do the back-flips and somersaults you’re both used to

Hmm. This is NOT about my baby. He was so active today I wouldn’t have been surprised to wake up to a bruised belly. He was running, pedaling, punching, stretching… Pretty much all night long, it felt. It took me quite some time to fall asleep in the evening. I was awake for a whole hour after I went to pee at 5 am, being shaken to the core by my not-so-little baby boy.

Result? I woke up at 10 am. Which is waaay too late. And now I have a headache ;(

Anyway… 31 weeks. It’s a lot. I realize that I feel like I’ve been pregnant for a long, long time. As in, remember that trip to Chicago in July? Oh yeah, my first flight with the little one. Remember we went camping in June? Oh yeah, I had lots of fun with the progesterone suppositories. Remember the Cuba vacation? The trip to New Jersey? Watching that Chess musical? Corporate outing at Blue Mountain? Yes, yes, and yes – and I was pregnant at all of these occasions. Seven months is a looong time.

It’s a long journey. Long enough to get used to the idea of becoming a parent. Long enough to come to terms with the idea of going through pains of labour. Long enough to relax about the whole non-sleeping issue about to enter my life. Long enough to not feel creeped out by the idea of another human being visibly moving inside my belly. Long enough to read about pregnancy, breast-feeding, labour. To research baby gear. To have a baby shower. To slow down. To smile when your hubby calls you “mommy”.

What’s left to do in the 2 months that still remain? Prepare the nursery (paint the walls, buy and hang the curtains, add some shelves in the closet, buy the crib). Prepare all the stuff for the baby (wash and fold the 0-3 months clothes, wash the little bath tub, have the changing table ready, set the bed). Pack the L&D bag. Stop working (Jan. 17th will be my last day – a month and a half to go!). And pack as much sleep as possible.

I gained 26-27 pounds already. Is it too much for 7 months? I guess. I dunno. Not much I can do about it. I am going to see my OB tomorrow – so we’ll find out.

31 weeks – I feel like I can see the finish line already. Although I know that 9 weeks is plenty. Yawn. I am sleepy yet again.