Sunday, April 26, 2009

New territory

This second pregnancy has brought a lot of "firsts":
  • First time being pregnant for more than 38 weeks. I'm now 39.1 weeks from LMP.
  • First time I've started wondering, although not impatiently yet, I wonder when this baby will be born? I wonder when I will go into labor?
  • First time seeing a midwife in a formal relationship, which I have found enjoyable especially for the social and emotional aspects of prenatal care. The routine clinical stuff is just a side note that I do myself on a weekly basis anyway (blood pressure, fundal height, heart tones, weight) because I love keeping track of these changes. I also really appreciate having access to lab work and referrals when needed, such as when I got superficial clots in my varicose veins.
  • First time I've had to really slow down physically toward the end of pregnancy. There is no way I could go for a brisk 2-3 mile walk right now, like I was doing daily with my dog right until Zari was born. If I try to pull that off now, I get constant contractions and pelvic pressure, and my belly feels like it's going to explode.
  • First time getting stretch marks. This week a few of them appeared on my lower belly. Last time I had a few prick marks on each hip, as if I had been stabbed by a giant fork. But now I have the real deal.
And now, I am in the middle of another first of sorts. I'm trying to figure out if I am, or will be soon, going into labor! I've been feeling crampy on and off for the past two weeks, like I'm getting my period. Yesterday, that morphed into those all-too-familiar sensations of labor: contractions coordinated with a sharp, intense menstrual-cramp-like feeling. The kind that you need to move your hips through. I've had these sporadically for the past 24 hours. I can't say how long they are, or how close together they are, since I am trying my darnedest to be in denial for as long as possible.

I just kept on doing my usual activities yesterday, with occasional time-outs to swivel my hips. We went morel mushroom hunting on some friend's land and found 10 big ones! I can't tell you how excited we were. There's nothing on earth like the taste of morels. We cooked them up for dinner in a simple cream sauce over linguine. I also did quite a bit of gardening. Over the past few days I've planted or transplanted: 10 Eutin rose bushes around our brick patio, 5 raspberry, 5 blackberry, 10 asparagus, 25 strawberry, leeks, shallots, parsnips, and potatoes. Once we finish building wire mesh cages over our raised bed gardens (to keep squirrels, rabbits, and other wildlife out), I have a lot more seeds and seedlings to plant.

Then at midnight last night, I started seeing bloody show and having labor diarrhea--both of which signaled the start of my labor with Zari. I stayed up until 1 am, since I wanted to have things in order in case labor really kicked into gear. The contractions, if I can call them that, were intense enough that I almost didn't go to bed, but still sporadic enough that it seemed a bit silly to give them so much attention. So I went to bed and slept on and off all night, waking up through the contractions and wishing I were upright and moving when they came, but not enough to actually get out of bed! I feel well-rested considering I was having fairly intense contractions all night. I knew this already, but it is SO much more painful to be lying still during a contraction! Movement makes it a million times better. I listened to the Hypnobabies "easy first stage" track the last half of the night, and it really helped me sleep between the contractions.

I'm up now--obviously!--now that it's light out, checking email and rocking through the contractions on my birth ball. Still, I don't know if I can mentally call this labor yet. With Zari, it demanded my full attention pretty much as soon as it started, and 10 hours later I had a baby. I suppose I can just hang out in denial until my body starts pushing, right?

So now I'm trying to figure out if I should go to church and risk some strange looks if I start rocking back and forth. Or do I stay home and putter around? I just don't feel that overwhelming sense of concentration and focus that I had with Zari's labor.

24 comments:

  1. Of course, the Lord is with you everywhere, but it might be nice to go and have a special prayer for you and baby :) Going to church this morning would help you stay in your state of "denial" a bit longer, too.

    Something I did in early labor that helped (NOT that you're in labor...no...) was to kneel on the floor in front of my birth ball and drape my arms and chest over it and rock back and forth during a contraction. Aaahh. So nice :)

    I'm so happy for you Rixa!

    Stand and Deliver, my friend :)

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  2. So excited for you! Look forward to your updates. Isn't it neat how each labor is different (well, sometimes it's neat)? It does sound like you are in labor. In early labor, I tend to do a lot of walking/swaying.

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  3. Bloody show is a good sign. I would probably not go to church. second babies come quicker than 1st babies. Sound like you are doing well. But having the baby in the car would sort of suck.

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  4. How exciting! Especially with the bloody show and diarrhea, I wouldn't stray too far from home today. Sending you positive labor vibes! Er...for when you are in REAL labor..because you're probably just in prodromal labor now...

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  5. It is always nice to take the sacrament. I have back problems, especially while I am pregnant, and even when I know I can't sit through the full three hours, I try to go and take the sacrament. But I only live five minutes from the church. :) If you live a ways away that is a different matter entirely. Like someone else said, having a baby come quickly and not being at home would stink.

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  6. oh yes rixa, stand and deliver and just centre and move through whatever comes your way. im so thrilled for you. xxx

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  7. I'm excited for you!!!

    (and also a little jealous b/c Ive been having exactly what you describe off and on for 4.5 weeks now. and sometimes it gets pretty darn intense and feels exactly like labour but it fizzles several hours later back into just plain uncomfortable. prodromal!!!)

    looking fwd to updates!

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  8. i cant quit checking your blog! i can not wait!
    jessica

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  9. i'll be thinking of you!

    t not k

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  10. I'm excited for you. I look forward to hearing about little one #2. Good luck

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  11. Wow, exciting! Sounds like early labor to me. I would stay home, but it's your call. I am hoping for some exciting updates soon!

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  12. Wow, Congrats Rixa! It sounds like you're almost there! I've been reading your blog for a while now and was looking forward to hearing about your birth while I waited to have mine. Except that my little girl was too anxious to get here (apparently 36 weeks and 1 day was enough "cooking" for her), and she arrived at home on Thursday morning after 4 hours and 20 minutes of labor! I delivered her with the help of a midwife here in Iowa City that I believe you know very well. It was fabulous, and I hope your experience is too (and I can't wait to read about it)!!!

    Jenn

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  13. Either way (if you're not in labor now, you will be sometime in the next two --three?-- weeks) we'll be thinking of you and praying for everything to go as well as last time.

    Excited to read about it, too!

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  14. I was hoping you would wait- or I should say baby would wait- for my birthday- Our prayers are with you- and - you will know whether you should go to church or not- excitement in this Freeze household- Gramma (soon for the 18th time) Freeze

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  15. Very exciting, Rixa. Sounds like labor. can't wait to hear. Just lighting a candle over here for you and new baby! Lots of birth love and wishes from the L's...

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  16. How exciting! Good luck! My 2nd baby was a total wild card, so you really never know, huh? Can't wait to hear more!

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  17. Happy birthing Rixa... Can't wait to hear your story.
    XxL

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  18. Not that you're in labor, but exciting to hear you might be :-) Good luck and can't wait to hear your story!

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  19. Sending warm thoughts for a lovely birth - can't wait to hear how it unfolds.

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  20. I love reading your blog and just wanted to say hooray for you! Enjoy the birth, Rixa. - sending some positive energy your way!

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  21. Not to be discouraging or anything... But with both of my pregnancies I did this for the whole last month, the cramping, early stage ctx, the swaying, rocking and all. :P I am a classic "putterer". Thank you, Dr Bradley.

    But for you, I hope it's the read deal!

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  22. oh this is exciting! i've been checking back here often to see if that baby had arrived yet. my thoughts are with you today and hopefully we'll be seeing a big announcement soon!

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  23. Very exciting news, Rixa! I'm thinking of you. Happy birthing!

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  24. I went to church when I was in labor with my third, but I didn't know I really was in labor yet so I'm not sure if it counts. The funny looks would have been entertaining for you, though. :)

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