Things I wish I had done differently during this pregnancy and birth:
1. I wish I had done my bellycasting sooner. I had everything on hand and had planned on doing the bellycast some time during the 38th week. Well, that obviously did not happen!
2. Ditto on taking artistic pregnancy pictures. I have weekly pictures of my growing belly, but nothing more aesthetic.
3. Next time, I will be more pro-active in treating my perineum and vaginal area after the birth. I had some pretty serious swelling and pain, and I realize now I should have started ice packs and warm herbal baths right away. I didn’t do any of these things until the fourth day after the birth.
4. Made sure our camera was on the right setting (5 megapixels). It was on a very low resolution when Eric snapped the picture of me and Zari immediately after she was born. I am sad because it is too grainy for anything but a very small print. I don’t suppose there’s a magic way to remedy this...anyone?
Things I am very glad I did:
1. Read Jack Newman’s Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers about 2 times from cover to cover, and watched several video clips on his website. I firmly believe that educating myself before the birth enabled breastfeeding go without a hitch. Knowing exactly what a good latch looks and feels like, and how to get it right, made all the difference.
2. Bought a fetoscope. Eric and I enjoyed listening to the baby’s heart beat, and when I had occasional “hmmmm, I haven’t felt the baby move in a while” moments, I could reassure myself that the baby was fine. The best $13 I ever spent. I didn’t use it all during labor though, nor was I planning to. The thought crossed my mind once, but as the intensity mounted, I didn’t think of it again.
3. Had a 12-day "babymoon" before I allowed any visitors (my mom) to come. It was a magical time, with just me, Eric, and the new baby. We spent most of the time upstairs in our master suite. Eric brought the laptop up, and we ate our meals on my sewing table. Church members supplied most of our dinners during that time, so Eric only had minimal cooking duties. Then, right when I was starting to feel a little stir-crazy, my mom arrived. It was perfect.