Thursday, January 31, 2013

Baby III Week 39: Puffer Fish

39 Weeks

Just a quick update because I don't want to cut into my nap time, which is what my world has been revolving around this week.

Baby is definitely growing. There's feet and fists all over the place, it kinda freaks Eric out. I think it's super cool until baby decides to stretch out all his or her limbs. That's pretty uncomfortable.

Obviously, I'm kinda growing too. I'm glad I haven't had any huge weight jumps, but I hoped to stop at 40 pounds. I'm somewhere between 41 and 42 pounds gained right now.

My glucose levels have been perfect all week. I did have a bit of a scare last night when my hands and feet started swelling fairly suddenly. After doing a pretty fantastic job of keeping relaxed and hydrated all week I had an upsetting day which will cause glucose levels to rise (part of the fight or flight response) and can cause swelling. This morning my hands and feet were ok but my face was kinda puffy. Basically, you can't upset me right now or I'll blow up like a puffer fish. I've been trying to drink tons of water today and already took 2 little naps and it's only 2pm.

I'm about due for another.

No this is not a moldy pumpkin. It's a glass one because turns out, pumpkins are hard to find in January. Next week is supposed to be a Jack Fruit... I have no clue what that is or where to find one. We think baby is somewhere around 8lbs. It's probably like 9 though...

Monday, January 28, 2013

Baby III Week 38: Lie & Say Your Water Broke

38 Weeks

So if you don't count the trip to Labor & Delivery, this week was another fairly laid back, uneventful week.

But we kinda do have to count the L&D trip.

And there's a great peeing in public story here too.

On Thursday I again woke up feeling like I had the world's worst stomach flu. It has happened on and off all month starting a couple days after Christmas. I usually end up laying on the bathroom floor, too scared to stray more than a step from the toilet. It only lasts a couple hours though, then I'm fine. Well on Thursday it didn't stop after a couple hours, or thee, or four. And this time I had all the stomach upset plus pain and pressure in my back, which made me a little nervous. I talked to my midwife and a nurse at the clinic and both urged me to go to L&D. I very reluctantly called my daycare parents and sent our kids to my mom's and we headed to Natividad. (after I showered, washed my hair, shaved my legs, dried and curled my hair, put on make up, PACKED, had Eric put the car seat in the car, and took one last belly pic... just in case)

The whole time Eric and I just kept saying "we better not be having a baby."

We got to the hospital and I felt really awkward. I don't do pain and suffering well, I can be pretty calm and happy even in a lot of discomfort. Flash back to the Dominican nurse telling me I could probably go home and I likely was in early labor when I was actually working very hard, nearly completely dilated with a strong urge to push. I'm just not good at expressing my discomfort unless it's really unbearable. So we are explaining to the nurse why we came in and I feel like I have to justify it because I clearly don't look like I'm in labor or in pain. I feel silly trying to explain my pretty miserable symptoms but still being able to do it with a smile. The nurses were all really nice though. I changed into a gown and got hooked up to the monitors to check that baby was ok and that I was not in fact in some weird stealth labor.

I really couldn't capture how big the room is, or how bright. I somehow caught it in a dark moment. Anyhow, I'm a fan. I totally think one day women will be able to lug their birth tubs into these rooms. Hey, I can dream for our community!

No signs of labor, good news... we still needed to take maternity/family pictures in two days! I did... again... feel stupid needing a monitor to tell me if I was in labor or not... but it was good to just cover all the bases.

I didn't have to wait long for the on-call OB and like the nurses he was super nice. He did a quick ultrasound to check my fluid levels, something I was concerned about, and to check on baby. My fluid was 17cm, completely normal! Great news! He asked about my symptoms and said it sounds like when I first experienced them in December I likely had a stomach flu then and the good bacteria in my digestive system never re-established itself. That explained why if I ate anything a little challenging for my body, like dairy, I got really sick. He said to take some probiotics, even what is in yogurt is fine. He asked if I wanted him to do a cervical check and I kinda did... just to see what was going on. He found a nurse to be in the room and he said I was about 70% effaced and completely closed. I know most women nearing the end of their pregnancy would love to hear they were already dilated, and I know this means nothing, I could be closed today and in labor tomorrow... but it was just a little reassuring that I would hopefully make it through the weekend.

On Saturday we took our maternity pics. It was just me, Eric, the kids, and a tripod, no photographer. We went to Point Lobos and while it was challenging trying to wrangle kids with no help, we were pretty successful! Here's a few faves:

Pictures were the last thing on my list of things that absolutely had to happen before baby arrives, so I could relax a little. Eric is still a little nervous about having a new baby around and for most of the last 2 weeks he's barely wanted to give me a side hug let alone anything that might get labor going. You'd think 9 months would be adequate notice. He's getting over it now though.

Baby is feeling much bigger. I can feel him or her in my ribs and down in my hips. Unlike with Milo and Ash, this baby's movements can be really uncomfortable, sometimes painful. Baby has not dropped, but feels very heavy.

Many pregnant women worry about their water breaking in public. I never have really, but I can't imagine it would be embarrassing. I mean, it means you are having a baby, it's exciting! No one would react to a woman's water breaking with "ew" or looking down on her. Likely reactions would be sheer panic, because everyone knows babies are born after a woman's water suddenly breaks without warning, woman screams, blames father, and baby torpedos out of her vagina (at least that's what's on tv) or a rush to action... because... you know the whole torpedo thing.

The truth is, only 10% (or something like that) of women's labors start with their water breaking. I don't know if any studies have been done on this, but I'm sure there are many more pregnant women who pee when they sneeze... or cough...

Sunday, Grocery Outlet, chewing gum, choked on own spit, coughed, peed. Awesome.

I was stunned, and of course it suddenly feels like everyone is looking at you. What to do? I had a full cart of groceries and I just needed to make it through the checkout and to the car and I was good. There was no reason to go to the bathroom, damage was done. I could abandon my car and bolt out... but then I'd have to do the whole trip over. Mothers will understand.

I'm super pregnant, if anyone notices, I'm going to lie and say "oh my gosh... I think my water broke!"

Instant sympathy.

So, like a pro I went through checkout, normal small talk about the giant belly, and I walked at a normal pace to the car. Pretty sure there is a mommy merit badge for this. The things we give up for our children, like control over basic bodily functions.

I did kegels the whole way home.

I'm up to 40 pounds. I decided to do some bare belly pics this week since I hadn't... even if I'm super white.

Baby is supposed to be a pumpkin... I couldn't find a pumpkin... we'll be a pumpkin next week. We settled on a small watermelon. I'm not really listening to the average size estimates now, no way baby is under 7lbs and 20in right now.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Baby III Week 37: If You Build It

37 Weeks

As a reverse to "If you build it, they will come," I'm hoping that if I prepare nothing, the baby can't come. Not that I'm not anxious to meet this little baby! I am! But I am enjoying being pregnant right now. I'm not looking forward to the jelly belly that I will have to wage war against in the coming months (years). We still need to take our maternity pictures! Eric is still working on our kitchen remodel. And... I like sleep. I got 14 hours one night... just because who knows when that will ever happen again. Likely another 2 years.

So, what have I done?

I washed 6 outfits.
I took out the suitcase.

That's it.

And this is what is happening with the suitcase currently:

I DID perfect my birth plan. I needed to cut it way down from what I originally put together for OB interviewing purposes (jump back to week 23 for that birth plan), and I did... by a page.

New birth plan... that's all I'm doing to prepare for baby this week... maybe I'll do better next week.

Gentry Family Birth Plan

– Eric Gentry         
Mother – Cori Lynn Gentry       
Due Date – February 7, 2012
Midwife – Jill Petenbrink- Dieme CPM, LM              

Obstetrician – Dr. Chandler

Thank you for allowing us to summarize our wishes for the birth of our third child. We are experienced in birthing naturally, we believe this is the safest method for the mother and child. Thank you for helping us in achieving our goals.

Mother’s allergies – Vicodin and latex

Labor Wishes in Stage 1

·         IV Fluids – We do not want to routine IV fluids.

·         Hep-Lock – We understand having a hep-lock in place is standard procedure and that hemorrhage or dehydration can complicate getting vein access in an emergency. We have successfully labored without a hep-lock in place and we prefer to not have one.

·         Continuous Fetal Monitoring – We prefer intermittent over continuous fetal monitoring.

·         Vaginal Exams – We prefer vaginal exams to be used minimally. If membranes have spontaneously ruptured, we may not consent to any vaginal exams.

·         Artificial Rupture of Membranes – We do not consent to AROM. If membranes remain intact in the 2nd stage we ask they remain so until the birth of baby’s head at which time the membrane can be removed.

·         Food and Liquids by Mouth The mother will eat and drink as she feels necessary throughout labor.

·         Pain Management – Please do not offer any form of epidural or narcotic pain relief during labor. Mother may accept pain relief if suturing is necessary postpartum.

·         Residents & Students – We welcome residents & students to see a natural birth in progress as long as they do not cause any unnecessary noise or distraction. Please inform us of who is a student, especially if they play any role in the birth.

·         Photography & Video – As long as is it does not interfere with the birth and there are no emergencies, we would like to have a close friend present to video tape and photograph the birth.

Labor Wishes in Stage 2

·         Pushing Positions – The mother would like to push in whatever position is most comfortable to her at the time. She prefers upright positions.

·         Mother Directed Pushing – The mother will push with urges.  The mother would like to be reminded to touch the baby’s head at crowing.

·         Episiotomy – We do not consent to an episiotomy. If a vacuum delivery is necessary we ask it’s done without an episiotomy.

·         Delivery – If the delivery is uncomplicated, the mother or father may like to assist in catching the baby. We greatly appreciated this offer by the birth attendant in our previous hospital delivery. We do not know the sex of the baby and would like to announce it ourselves.

Labor Wishes in Stage 3

·         Immediately Following Birth – We want our baby placed on the mother’s chest for skin to skin contact, even before the umbilical cord is cut.

·         The Umbilical Cord – Please do not clamp the cord until it has stopped pulsing.

·         Breastfeeding – The mother wishes to nurse her baby immediately.

·         The Placenta –We plan to have our placenta encapsulated, we have made arrangements for it to be taken within 3 hours of delivery.

Newborn Care

·         Rooming – We would like a private room. If our baby does need to be taken away for any reason, one or both of us would like to accompany him or her. We want our hospital stay to be as short as possible.

·         Eye Ointment – We would like eye ointment to not be applied until the end of the first hour after birth. We want erythromycin to be used, not silver nitrate.

·         Bottles & Pacifiers Please do not offer any bottles to the baby without parents' notification of a medical need. No pacifiers or artificial nipples please.

·         First Bath – We do not want our baby bathed.

·         Circumcision – If we have a son we will not be circumcising him.

Thank you for taking the time to help us achieve a natural childbirth for our third baby!

This is an extra page I attached:

In The Case of an Emergency Cesarean Section
Gentry Family Birth Plan

Our goal is to birth our third child naturally, but we understand that sometimes emergencies happen and if any of these allowances are possible, we would like them considered. Thank you.

Mother’s allergies and special needs – Vicodin and latex.

Wishes In Case of Cesarean

·         Any monitors with volumes that can be turned down, please do so.

·         Mother would like IV placed in left hand or arm by an anesthesiologist. Mom has small veins and a fear of blood and needles.

·         Mother would like warm blankets during surgery.

·         The father will take pictures and may want to video tape (capture first cry) once the baby is out.

·         Mother would like her arms free during surgery.

·         Please lower the curtain/lift baby so the father and mother may discover the sex together.

·         If baby is doing well, please bring to mother for skin to skin immediately. If this is not possible for mother but baby is doing well, bring to father for skin to skin.

·         If baby needs to go to the NICU, the father will go with baby.

·         We will plan to vaginally birth our next baby, please reinforce the mother’s uterus.

·         We will be taking our placenta, please do not discard.

·         Please discuss all medications with the mother before administering them.

Thank you for taking the extra time to consider our wishes during what may be a scary time for us!

I'm up 39lbs. I'd say I hope to get to share a 38 week post, but since I'm nearly a week late on this one and 38 weeks is tomorrow.... I'm pretty sure that won't be a problem.

Famous last words right?

So... baby is supposed to be a winter melon... whatever that is, according to The Bump and according to What To Expect it is swiss chard. We are going to go with romaine which is not that far off from chard right? 19in and 6 1/2lbs...


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Baby III Week 36: Not Even A Simmer... I Swear

36 Weeks

This week is scaring me. I don't even want to tell you about it because I'm sure I will become a watched pot.

Oh... gross stuff ahead.

I don't feel like this baby is coming soon. My blood sugar has been great, so I don't think I have an induction coming around the corner. I don't feel huge. Baby doesn't feel super low. I'm sleeping fine (except I'm STILL rolling onto my back in my sleep - hate that). I'm not tired. I'm not over it and I don't feel ready to pop.


There's the contractions... and some are pretty pinchy.

 And the mucus... lots of it...

 The lower abdominal pressure...

 Lower back pressure...

 And that feeling that something is going to drop from between my legs if I'm not careful.

 And that thing when your body decides it needs to totally clean out pre-game, accompanied by lots of fun cramping...

Did I mention mucus?

 So... noo big deal... just a lot of stuff that heavily resembles my pre-labor symptoms... that usually lasts about a day. I've made it 3 now... I'm sure it means nothing.

 Everyone go about your business... nothing to see.


 There better not be.

 Belly compare this week? I think yes!

36 weeks pregnant with Milo.

36 weeks pregnant with Ash

36 weeks pregnant with Baby III
I think I'm bigger.

So I grabbed a spaghetti squash for this week. Baby is about 18 1/2 inches long and  5 3/4  pounds.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Baby III Week 35: Hydramnios. It's Not a Comic Book Villain.

35 Weeks

The last few weeks seem to be getting gradually easier. Perhaps I've just convinced myself that this is easier than a newborn that may or may not sleep. I guess I don't mind peeing a few dozen times a night and holding my breath when I put on shoes. Over all I'm not all that uncomfortable, and other than a few high numbers when I caught a virus at the beginning of the week, my blood sugar has been right on. Baby has been leaving my ribs and lungs alone and I'm not out of breath all the time. Though he or she does seem to enjoy punching my hip socket, I could do this for a while longer. Sign me up for a few more weeks.

I had an appointment with my widwife this week. At 35 weeks and 3 days I measured 40 weeks. Baby, however, feels about average sized, I just have a lot of fluid. We didn't do an ultrasound so I'm not sure if we can officially confirm, but it's possible that I have hydramnios again... or excess amniotic fluid. It is associated with gestational diabetes and can cause potential complications like prolapsed umbilical cord (when the umbilical cord drops into the birth canal where it can be pinched, cutting off oxygen from the baby,  placental abruption (when the placenta separates from the uterine wall before it should, causing hemorrhage, and due to the uterus being over stretched and exhausted, postpartum hemorrhage, which I've experienced twice now. Knowing that I already have so much fluid makes me a little nervous, but I'm hoping that my levels even out. I was up exactly 40lbs when I had my appointment, a shocking jump, but slowly over the week I slipped back to 37lbs gained, so perhaps my OB appointment tomorrow will reveal a bit of a fluid drop.

I've had a few comments about whether I'm over this pregnancy... and I'm really not right now. I'm feeling good, maybe a little too good. I don't feel like baby could be here any time, or even this month, so I haven't prepared a thing for him or her. I'm daring myself to go into labor early.

Lots of ligament pain in the belly area, but over all feeling good!

Baby is a coconut this week. This was the biggest one I could find but I don't this it's quite big enough. Baby should be around 5 1/4 lbs and a little over 18 inches. I'm sure mine is probably bigger though.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Baby III Week 34: Birth Butterflies

34 Weeks

Now every week that I do this whole fruit thing... I have to think "omg... I have to give birth to something bigger than that."

I'm still super excited about the birth though. My appointments with Dr. Chandler have been great and I meet another OB in the practice next week. A local mom and new birth photographer, Anna (I posted her HBAC story here), is photographing the birth. Everything is all lined up, except we haven't done a maternity shoot yet and I totally haven't planned anything for one. And I haven't purchased or set up anything for the baby... ok so nothing is really lined up. I'm just excited!

I'm up 36 pounds this week, but I really don't feel big. I decided to measure my belly,  hips and thighs to see exactly where I'm gaining, though I have no idea what is normal. My belly is 50 inches this week, so up 16 inches. Not much gained every where else, almost 3 inches on my hips and 1.5 in on my thighs, still smaller than after I delivered Milo or Ash. I was just curious how much weight that I had put on over the pregnancy was fat. I feel pretty good this week and baby seems to be happy too. I think we have finally settled head down, he or she isn't flipping all the time like before.

Remind me to at least put on mascara before taking any more pictures.

Baby is a butternut squash this week, about 5 pounds and 18 inches.