Tick tock…

June 2, 2008

I was going to say something about counting the days, now that I’m down to less than a week before my due date. Then I realized that due dates don’t mean much and the less I think about it, the better off I’ll be. I really, really don’t want to be overdue, but I was with Jenny and it doesn’t seem like this kid is making any effort to move out yet, so I may very well go past my due date. I made it through Jenny’s birthday without giving birth, so one goal has been accomplished. Not that I would have minded having the baby a few days before her birthday, but I was a little afraid that I would have it on her birthday and then my poor kids would have to share a birthday forever. I never have thought that was very fair – it’s similar in my mind to kids born on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. It becomes very hard to celebrate one without the other and people often end up combining the two to save time and/or money. I know, Jenny’s birthday will be quite close to the baby’s, but at least it won’t be on the same day.

My goal right now is to also make it through today without going into labour, since my sister-in-law’s baby shower is tonight. However, after it’s over, I’m starting in on the self-induction stuff big time. The baby is head down and I think pretty low, I’m full term and healthy – there’s no reason that I can see not to try to get things going myself. Number one on the list of things to try – nipple stimulation. (I bet that phrase will get me some unintentional links from search engines.) I have never used this method in past pregnancies, but a friend of mine said that the one OBGYN we have in town recommended it to her, so I figure it’s a safe bet. It can bring on really strong contractions, so women are supposed to be careful, but I’m not too worried. It will either work or it won’t. The What to Expect book has a brief blurb in it that says women who started doing it at 39 weeks were much less likely to go past their due dates. That’s enough motivation for me. There are lots of other things I can try, but I’ve done most of them and none of them have worked for me in the past. I do want to try to go walking a bit more often as I know it’s good for me, but I’m not expecting that to push me into labour. And castor oil – something one of my friends swears by and has used, I believe, in all four of her pregnancies – is just way too gross for me. Not only do I hate the thought of swallowing oil, but the effects of it are just not what I want to start labour with. Yeah, let’s spend hours on the toilet emptying out our insides while having strong contractions. Um, no thanks.

Meanwhile, the ribs still hurt, but I’m getting used to it. They are making sleep a bit more difficult, as I think I wake up a bit every time I roll onto my left side. Of course, at this point, I’m waking up nearly every two hours to pee anyway, so what difference does it make? I still hurt pretty bad when I sneeze, but I think the cold is going away, so it’s not happening all that often now. I haven’t iced them in a few days and I stopped taking Tylenol, so things must be better.

Yesterday was a huge day, but somehow we got through it and didn’t feel totally awful at the end of it. Church in the morning, lunch on the way home, a short nap for the kids, I made a cake and then we had Jenny’s party. We quickly cleaned up after everyone left and ran over to Mike’s company barbeque, where at least we were fed and I didn’t have to be on my feet much at all. Most people are pretty sympathetic to hugely pregnant women, and the hostess actually recruited one of her daughters to keep the kids entertained for some of the time. I expected that we might be there for some time, but by twenty after six, things were wrapped up and the kids were acting pretty grumpy, so we decided to go to a communion service at church. Friends of ours were doing childcare, so I at least was assured that bringing the kids wouldn’t be a bad idea. They got to play with their friends (who were at the birthday party, too) and we got to sit in one place for awhile. After that, Mike’s parents were going to McDonald’s, and while we do not buy things or eat things there as a rule, they do have a nice play area, so we headed over after getting drinks for ourselves elsewhere. The kids got to play some more and by the time we got home at nearly nine o’clock, they were quite obviously in need of sleep. Jenny just had to play with her new toys first, but after fifteen minutes, we got them to bed. I then had some cleaning up to do and Mike took the time to remove all the junk from our room and put it back in the laundry room (that was how he cleaned it up so that people could come from the backyard into the house…our room was full of laundry room mess). I put in some laundry, made Mike a lunch and then read and slept until Mike came to bed. I got a foot massage out of him before we went to sleep, which was a nice treat. It must have been the shoes I was wearing, but my right foot hurt so bad I was walking funny before bed.

Anyway, today is my day “off”. So far, I have folded laundry and cleaned up a few things in the kitchen, but I’m not planning to be terribly productive, just because I wore myself out so badly yesterday. I have movies and books from the library and the kids have new toys and a clean room to play in, so they’re likely to stay entertained pretty easily today. Tomorrow, when I feel like going into labour would be nice, I can start back on things around the house, with hope that cleaning might get things going for me.

My big triumph of the day yesterday was the cake I made for Jenny. It was a boxed cake mix (I had to compromise somewhere) but with homemade filling and icing. I did a layer of raspberry puree with some sugar and cornstarch to thicken it and a layer of whipped cream in the middle of two layers of chocolate cake. I iced it with pink butter cream frosting and decorated with candy. I have made Jenny’s cakes in the past few years, but this one is definitely my favourite so far. I did some piping on it and really enjoyed that part – it may be something I do more often.  Here’s a picture (yes, I’m showing off :)):

 

Jenny\'s pink candy cake

Lickety Split

March 2, 2008

As in…this has to be quick, but I didn’t want to miss another week.  If I can manage it, I am determined to stay weekly on this until the birth of this child (which at this point feels light years away…whatever a light year feels like). 

I am doing better this week, but there is still an underlying feeling of disappointment with the world around me and my situation.  I have talked to my parents and my siblings in the last week, which is great, and things don’t seem quite so difficult with my in-laws in some ways, but things still feel uneasy.  I think I will have to fight depression for the rest of this pregnancy and more than likely every other one I ever go through.  It’s not a surprise to me, but it is still a burden that I would rather not bear. 

On a much lighter (well, in one way, anyway) note, I have been baking this week and enjoying it thoroughly.  I made brownies on Wednesday, chocolate chip cookies on Thursday and raspberry oatmeal bars on Friday.  I also took on a new venture and made my own butter on Friday.  It’s much easier than it sounds (just put heavy cream and salt in the blender and blend until it separates) and it tastes so nice.  I think it will be something I do often.  If it worked out cheaper to always buy cream and do it at home, I probably would, but I think in the end, it isn’t cheaper than buying my butter.  At least with butter, the ingredient list is rather short.  Cream, salt, and sometimes colouring (although it’s easy to get butter without the salt or colouring).  Margarine on the other hand…well, don’t get me started there.  I won’t ever quit. 

As for pregnancy, I’m feeling particularly pregnant this week, like things started happening again in there and the baby is growing (go figure).  I’m wrapping up week twenty-five already and that at least tells me that I’m getting there.  That and the fact that this kid won’t let me forget it (internally or externally).  It’s not keeping me up yet, but I am finally at the point of getting up more than once in the night to use the bathroom.  The only way I can avoid that is to stop drinking around supper time.  The trouble with that (and my sister-in-law says she’s the same way) is that I get very thirsty before bed.  I feel like gulping down glass after glass of water and then having more from the water bottle on my bedside table.  So it’s kind of my fault and not just the baby’s that I have to get up so much.  It’s not so bad, though, because half the time I have to get up anyway to take Jenny to the bathroom. 

I can happily report that it’s been more than a month that my daughter has been out of diapers completely.  She had been day trained for months, but we were reluctant to quit at night because she wasn’t waking up dry very often.  Finally, after getting past two and a half, we decided it was past time and we tried it for a week.  We’ve had our fair share of wet beds and midnight wakings, but it’s worth it.  For one thing, we now only have to diaper Elias, which means we’re going through diapers very slowly.  I did cloth on him for a few months, but then I got pregnant and went back to disposable most of the time.  I think my goal is to go cloth on the baby almost 100% of the time.  My in-laws really wouldn’t want to deal with cloth, though, so for times that the baby is with them or another babysitter, we’ll probably do disposable.  We’re getting our tax refund (a nice big one) in a few weeks, and I’m planning to get a good supply of one-size diapers from Mother-ease.  I really like the quality and the package deals are pretty reasonable – plus I’ll get free shipping if my order is big enough (and it will be).  The great thing about cloth diapering a newborn is that you can put the dirty ones straight into the wash without rinsing them out.  Breastmilk poop (mmm) is water soluble, so it doesn’t need pre-rinsing.  Yes, I know disposables are more convenient in many ways, but I just can’t excuse the number I end up throwing away, especially with new babies.  It’s kind of gross when you think about it.  What I can’t wait to try are the flushable diapers…I guess they would cost more in the long run, but for traveling or for babysitters, at least I would know that the diaper is going to decompose very quickly compared to disposables and be just as easy as getting rid of a disposable, rather than having to store a cloth diaper.

I said this would be quick, but I’m approaching nine hundred words at this point.  It is 10:30 on a Saturday night, which means I have to get up in the morning and I still have laundry to fold and dishes to do before I go to bed.  It would also benefit me greatly to get the kids clothes ready for church and make sure I have all the right stuff in the diaper bag.  Planning ahead can do a lot for me – I just don’t do it much.

I broke nine hundred.  Guess it’s time to go.  See you next week.