Whew - I'm still here folks, and all is going well!! Sorry about the blogging break - things were a bit hectic around here, which means I have lots to report.
Let's see....where to start? How about with our prenatal classes? I know, woo woo prenatal classes, how enthralling right? Seriously though, for those of us that are birthing a child within the next couple of months, it's actually VERY enthralling. And for those that are hoping to birth that child in the comfort of their own home (without pain medication) it's even MORE enthralling!! We decided to take a class with the childbearing society because of their focus on natural childbirth, and so far, we are really happy with our choice. We've been to 3 classes and we already feel much more confident about our ability to handle childbirth. Now let's hope the next few classes that focus on childcare instill confidence in our ability to look after our little girl once she arrives. Because I hear, contrary to popular belief, that looking after a newborn is actually more terrifying than giving birth to said newborn - heh.
And with that in mind, let's talk about doulas! For those that are wondering, a doula is an individual who provides non-medical support to a woman and her family during labour and childbirth, and sometimes during the postpartum period too. In order to achieve our hope of having a natural homebirth, we've decided to hire a doula to help support both Patrick and I during the beautiful (but likely long and difficult) process of giving birth to our little girl.
So a couple weeks ago, I met with one of the highly recommended doulas from Acumamas. I soon discovered why these ladies are so highly recommended. From the moment we first started chatting, I knew I'd feel safe and comfortable having this woman with us while going through the birthing process. And with that, we hired ourselves a birthing doula! She's also licenced to perform acupuncture, which means acupuncture treatments are part of her doula services. I'm not normally one to follow alternative medicine, but I must admit, the statistics that point towards the benefits of acupuncture and preparing a woman in late pregnancy for labour are quite compelling. And it certainly won't cause any harm - so I figure - why not!
We also plan on hiring a post partum doula (for at least a couple weeks after little girl arrives), since we don't have a lot of family and friends here to help with the baby during those crazy first few months. A post partum doula is kind of like a nurse, and a nanny, and a lactation consultant, and a light housekeeper all rolled up in one terrific package! If we need help with the basics of newborn care, she can show us what we need to know. If we need a couple hours of rest, she'll look after the baby while we do so. If we need someone to run a load of laundry or two or ten, she'll do so. If I need help establishing breastfeeding, she'll have all sorts of pointers and tips. And if we just need to know that the crazyness we are experiencing is a normal part of newborn life, she'll be able to reassure us of that too - haha. Pretty awesome right? I thought so too! We've got someone in mind and are hoping to meet up with her sometime this week or next.
Hmmm....what else? Oh yes, we revamped our bedroom last weekend (including a new coat of paint) just in time to have our maternity photos taken on Saturday. Yup, that's right, we redid the entire bedroom one weekend before the actual photo shoot. Nothing like a deadline to get my arse in gear (we've been meaning to paint the bedroom for close to a year now - hah). We also made a lovely padded headboard (something else I've been meaning to do for YEARS) and decked out the bed in new linens. We went with a nice warm grey for the walls, and kitted out the rest of the room with purple, white and dark grey decor. I love it! You'll get to see how it looks once we get our photos from the photographers!
Which brings me to our awesome photo shoot with Gracci and Rico! The morning started out with a make up session with Ai Nagasawa. Ai was super sweet, and easy to chat with as she did my make up. I didn't take any photo inspiration of what I wanted - just told her to make it natural looking - and I was super happy with the results! I felt absolutely gorgeous, which as some of you know, can be difficult to achieve when 31 weeks pregnant - hah. Then Gracci and Rico arrived (and brought our little girl the sweetest pair of teeny tiny shoes - how crazy thoughtful is that!!) and we started the shoot with some "lifestyle" photos in our own home. Saturday was actually one of the few sunny (albeit cold) days we've had in a while, so after we finished up at home, we made our way to the olympic village for magic hour. Normally I'm not a huge fan of being in front of the camera, but when I'm all dolled up, and when I know the caliber of photos the photographers are capable of, I don't seem to mind so much - haha. I had a ton of fun and can not WAIT to see the photos. Hopefully, we should have them before Christmas - yay yay yay!!
And now for the weekly (or not so weekly) check in:
Week: 31 (3/4 of the way there!)
Weight Gain: I haven't stepped on a scale in some time now - but I do know I'm well over 20lbs gained at this point. And although the number on the scale is kind of crazy to see, it doesn't really bother me. In fact, I was saying to some gals at work the other day, that this is the least self conscious I've felt about my body in years! I'm not constantly trying to pull in my gut, or worried about muffin top. In fact, I tend to wear more form fitting tops just to SHOW OFF the belly - haha. It's really quite liberating!
Feeling: The heartburn and indigestion have set in for good it seems. I suppose I did well making it this far without much issue in that regard, but it really takes the fun out of eating when the first thing you think is...hmmm I wonder if this will come back to haunt me at 3am!
Maternity Clothes: The weather has cooled off considerably, and I found myself wearing the same 5 tops week in and week out, which meant they were getting washed alot, and thus, very worn looking. So I finally went out and splurged on some new winter items! Picked up some sweaters and long sleeved tops, as well as a couple pair of skinny jeans to wear with my new boots. I'm pretty much all kitted out now :) My only problem at this point is taking the dog for a walk in the rain. I refuse to buy maternity rain gear for such a short period of time! So far I've been able to wear my non maternity rain paints below the belly, but that's not going to last much longer. And I wear my rain jacket unzipped with a fleece underneath which helsp to keep most of the water out. I think I might have to get a cheap poncho soon though. Lovely.
Cravings: Still none. How boring. Maybe I'll add a couple more things here instead. How about a report on the belly button (still an inny) and stretchmarks (still managing to avoid these) over the next weeks!
Milestones: How about being close enough to the end to be taking prenatal classes? Oh and we took a fantastic infant and child CPR class too! Aren't we the overly prepared parents :)
Movement: More and more movement these days. And it's not just kicks now...I can actually feel her move her hands and legs across my belly. Just the other morning we played the "I poke you and you poke me back" game. So cute!! And for some reason, she loves going hog wild the minute I get into bed and rest on my left side. Funny girl.
Weekly Wisdom: Enjoy the lazy moments whenever possible (and boy did we enjoy being lazy on sunday after a few hectic weeks).
Random Name Ideas: We are really hoping that the name we have chosen fits our little girl when she arrives, because we don't have much of a list other than that - haha.
And a terrible photo - just cuz I love you all that much:
Prepared but Hectic Mama!