Archive for November, 2010

Welcome to the World Miss “C”!

November 29, 2010

*This post contains details of labor and birth.

On Saturday morning, I woke up and didn’t think “today is the day”. I made breakfast and started a load of laundry and was getting things in order for the week ahead. When I went to the bathroom, I noticed my mucus plug was starting to come out and there was even a slight tinge of blood in it. This is a sign that the cervix is ripening but this is a process that can happen over days or even weeks. I called the mom to be and let her know we’re getting close and I thought she’d be here early in the week. I took the kids grocery shopping around 11 am to stock up the fridge and starting having contractions (they felt like painful pressure on my cervix). I had a couple at the store and still didn’t think much of it. When we got home, I made lunch for the kids and did another load of laundry. The contractions kept up though I wasn’t timing them because I couldn’t REALLY be in labor.

I made “just in case” arrangements with one of my friends to be on standby for the weekend to help with the kids since my grandma wasn’t arriving until Monday. I finished packing my hospital bag and sterilized the breast pump accessories. The contractions kept coming and were getting more painful. I sent a text to mom to be at 1:45 pm saying, “This could be the first of many false alarms but I’m having lots of painful pressure/contractions! I’m lying down and going to time them for a bit .” I got a big glass of ice water, laid down on my left side on the couch and within ten minutes had another. Because of my history of fast labors, I thought I should check in with the doctor. I called her on her cell, let her know what was happening and she said to go in and the hospital would her call if she was needed. I called my friend and asked her to come over so I could go in to get checked and called the parents to be just after 2 pm. They were doing the finishing touches on the nursery and said they’d be right over. Mom, dad, grandma and grandpa to be of baby girl picked me up and we headed to the hospital, which is only five minutes away. The contractions kept coming but I was able to talk through them and still wasn’t convinced this was really it.

We checked into labor and delivery at 2:40 pm and I let them know my history of fast labors. The nurse asked if I was this relaxed during my other two, which I was. They got us into a room right away; I put on a gown and left a urine sample. The nurse came right in and hooked me up to the monitors and checked my cervix to see if I’d been progressing. By the expression on her face, I knew I was far along and was in shock. Active labor begins at 4cm and 10 cm is fully dilated. It was now 3:00 pm and I was already at 8 cm. The contractions were minutes apart and very strong. They called my doctor right away and got busy preparing for the delivery. They put in an IV and I sent a couple quick text messages. Mom, dad and grandma to be were all in the room this entire time and were busy sending updates as well and making sure I was taken care of. Our doctor arrived at 3:20 and checked me again and I was complete at 10 cm. She was very relaxed and telling stories and I said, “Are you going to change?” She had me push with the next contraction then got herself ready for the delivery. The bed got broken down, mom to be put on a gown and the doctor asked her if she wanted to help deliver. She said “Sure!”, put on a gown and booties and was next to the doctor for the delivery. Dad and Grandma to be stayed up by my right side and kept me cooled off with a damp washcloth. I was incredibly hot and the ice chips and cold towel felt wonderful. I breathed slowly through the pain and kept reminding myself that the pain would be over soon and the harder I worked the quicker it would be. Within 5 contractions and some cord untangling, baby girl was born right into the arms of her mother at 3:47 pm. Dad cut the cord and she was wrapped and cleaned in her mom’s arms where she happily remained for the next hour.

The placenta was delivered and I finally felt relief. Seeing the immediate love and adoration for the newest addition to their family was incredible to witness. I couldn’t have dreamt of a better delivery experience- the team of nurses and our doctor were amazing. Having the parents and grandma there to welcome their daughter and granddaughter into the world and see her take her first breaths was a moment I will never forget.

Happy Birthday “C”! She was born Saturday, November 27, 2010 at 3:47 p.m. At exactly 38 weeks gestation, she weighed in at 7 pounds, 5 ounces and is 20 inches long.

Miss “C” is here!

November 28, 2010

Miss “C” arrived yesterday at exactly 38 weeks. It was a fast, easy delivery. She weighed in at 7 lbs 5 oz and is 20 inches long. Everyone is doing well and she is a beautiful, mellow little girl. A more detailed birth story coming soon!

Giving Thanks

November 26, 2010

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving, spent with the family of this baby baking away (the baby was baking, not me – I got to relax all day!). They are an amazing family and I feel blessed to have gotten to know them so much better over this past year and felt like we were with family over this holiday. I am also thankful for my family, many of whom we’ll get to see over the next month and all of our friends who have been so supportive throughout this experience. It’s hard to believe I’m going to not be pregnant very soon!

Our appointment on Wednesday went well. Weight and blood pressure were fine and I had just a little protein in my urine. My feet are still fluctuating with the swelling but no headaches, blurred vision or other indicators of pre-eclampsia. Our ob starts checking for dilation at thirty eight weeks, which we hit tomorrow. So at our appointment on Wednesday we’ll see if these contractions are producing any signs of impending labor. We asked our doctor her guess as to when she thought the baby would arrive and she said twelve days. That puts us on December 6th, my daughters’ birthday.

My soon to be five year old has wanted a hamster for months now and after a lot of consideration, I gave in. We took regular trips to the pet store, checking them out, figuring out what we’d need and getting tips on picking out the right one. The pet store we decided on had just put out weaned teddy bear hamsters last week so she ended up with an early birthday present. I let her unwrap the cage on Wednesday morning (she freaked out and was beyond excited) and we got it all ready with bedding and water then we went out to pick up her new baby “Teddy”. She wants to hold him all the time and has been very good about cleaning up after him, feeding him and can’t wait to get home when we are out to play with little Teddy.

Any guesses as to when baby girl will arrive? Let’s guess weight and length too. Here’s mine, please leave a guess in the comments!

DOB-   December 8th, 10:10 pm

Weight-   8 lbs 6 oz

Length-  20 inches

Full Term!

November 21, 2010

Baby girl is now fully developed and considered full term as of yesterday. Anywhere between 37 and 42 weeks is full term, prior is premature and past 42 weeks (which I couldn’t imagine) is post-term. Our due date is only 20 days away but we all seem to think she might be a little early. She’s been measuring ahead in size and I’ve seemed to drop a little. It’s so exciting to have no idea when labor will come on but at the same time it makes planning things like my daughter’s birthday a challenge. For all I know, they could end up with the same birthday! Thankfully I will have family in town over her birthday weekend and it will be special no matter what we end up doing.

I’m trying to figure out my water retention mystery. I drink water all day long and don’t urinate as frequently as you’d think with how much fluid I consume. Then I get up about three times during the night with a full bladder. These last couple nights when I wake, I’ve had strong Braxton Hicks contractions, which makes the bathroom trips even more undesirable. I’ve weighed myself before bed and in the morning several nights in a row and it’s been a consistent 5 pound loss from night to morning, which is then replaced again the next day when the water cycle repeats. My feet are still a little swollen and they go up and down as well. Other than that I’m feeling great and can handle a couple more weeks of toting this little girl around.

 

The Last Hurrah!

November 18, 2010

With the okay from our doctor and the parents to be (since it’s a little farther than our contract’s allowable travel and quite an adventure in itself), I took my kids to Disneyland on Sunday with a friend and her daughter. I had a ticket from volunteering for Give a Day, Get a Day that expires December 15th and I didn’t want to pass up going. The day was way easier than I anticipated it to be and we managed to get in nine rides (I skipped two of them), visited Toon Town and saw the magical lighting of the castle and snow display right before we left. She had the MouseWait app on her iPhone, and is a pass holder (aka Disneyland expert) allowing us to get the most out of our day. This was my first time going as an adult during the holidays when it is all decked out, so I enjoyed all of the little details and didn’t miss going on the “big rides” at all. The kids were wonderfully behaved and had “the best day ever”! Since my daughter’s birthday is a few weeks away, we got her a Happy Birthday pin from the ticket window and made it her special day. I haven’t figured out what I’m going to do for her actual birthday yet, since it’s only five days before our due date. I’ve already let the baby know she can come before or after, as long as I’m not in the hospital on her birthday, it’ll all be good.

Monday we were back to school and work and by the end of the day I was exhausted! My feet swelled up again, I’m sure hugely in part from the low heels I wore and have not been the same since. I got a pedicure yesterday, which felt amazing and bought a pair of stretchy flats to get me though these next few weeks when filp flops won’t do. We had our 36 week check up today. Blood pressure and weight were good. Baby’s heart beat was strong and I’m measuring 37 weeks (the same as last week, so perhaps she’s dropped). I had a little protein in my urine but not enough to worry the doctor, and without any other negative symptoms it seems to be okay. She did the Group B Strep test as well, and hopefully that will come back negative so I can avoid antibiotics during labor, especially since mine tend to be so quick. This coming Saturday, baby girl will be considered full term, then the waiting begins! It’s time to pack my bag, get the house in order, the kid’s back up care lined up (if great grandma doesn’t make it in time) and then wait and wonder when her birthday will come.

Pop! Goes the Belly

November 10, 2010

We are 35 weeks, 4 days and my belly is measuring 37.5 weeks. Mom and dad of this little girl were at our check up today and we got another quick peek at her via ultrasound. I can’t imagine what this experience is like for them, but from my view, I couldn’t ask for a better surrogacy experience. They are so involved yet not imposing in any way. I’ve read of intended parents cleaning out and restocking the surrogate’s pantry and fridge or throwing away Teflon pans. They have trusted me to carry their baby and I’m honored to do so and enjoy the time spent with them.

I am not yet unbearably uncomfortable; just getting up from lying down or sitting on the floor (it happens a lot when you have a two year old) are challenging. I don’t want to talk about my weight, but will, since it will be fun to see how quickly it goes back down. I’ve gained the 35 pounds I typically gain during pregnancy and don’t want to gain much more! I feel like I’m eating regular portion sizes (not for two), I eat healthy (other than the occasional treat) and am always on the go with my little ones. At least we know the baby is nice and healthy and her share of the weight will be gone at delivery. She’s estimated to weigh around six and a half pounds now and growing right on track. The Braxton Hicks contractions are picking up and I can no longer comfortably cross my legs when sitting down. Tomorrow, the 30 days till our due date countdown begins! I’m not ready yet, but will be soon.

34 Weeks

 

Fat Feet!

November 5, 2010

It was in the eighties today. We had virtually no summer this year, just lots of fog and now the weather is gorgeous. My feet however, are not enjoying this. I don’t remember swelling with my previous pregnancies, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. That’s one of the benefits of journaling this pregnancy experience, I’ll be able to look back and see that I had cankles (where the calf and ankle become one) at 34 weeks along. Other than having hobbit feet, I’m feeling fine. The baby’s activity is the same, very mellow throughout the day and then she does her water aerobics after dinner and into the late evening. I just put together an info sheet about my children’s schedules for while I’m in the hospital and have my hospital checklist ready to go. We’re only a month away!


This was last night, before the swelling. From this perspective, my feet look small.


The most glorious sunset.