Well Rounded Birth Prep

Well Rounded Birth Prep

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Belly shot: 8 weeks along

This photo was taken at 7 weeks 6 days along with New Baby, right after the James Taylor concert hubby and I went to. (We bought the tickets with my Well Rounded Birth Prep teaching money from Jan. & Feb.! Thanks to you, my clients!)

Pregnancy #6, live baby #5.

Before I got the positive pregnancy test at 4 weeks 4 days along, I already had to unbutton my jeans when sitting down. I've lost 3 pounds from nausea, but still have to unbutton my jeans when sitting. I've already worn my Bella Band over unbuttoned jeans a few times.

My body gets one whiff of hCG and says, "We totally know what to do with this! Let's GOOOOOO!"

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

...and my best friend is pregnant, too!

Trebor on left, me on right, w/ our 4th babies. Nov 2010.
You might remember my best friend Trebor's Sutler's birth story from her previous baby. She had a peaceful home waterbirth with midwives, on Christmas day a few years ago, which was her second VBA2C (vaginal birth after 2 cesareans). Here is her birth story and what led up to it. Her story was featured in several local newspapers.
Trebor and her husband Rob have a lot in common with me and my husband, Rick. We each have four children close to the same ages, lost one to miscarriage, homeschool our kids, similar lifestyle choices (try to eat healthy, teach our kids manners, etc.), homebirth, baby-led weaning, and more. Trebor and Rob decided a few months ago to try for Baby #5. Rick and I cheered them on but did not plan on joining that club.

Then I found out I was pregnant. That was supposed to be Trebor, not me! At that point, Rick doubled up his efforts to root for Trebor to get pregnant ASAP so that he and I wouldn't be the only ones in this boat. About two weeks after I got my positive pregnancy test, Trebor got hers. Wow. Our due dates are only two weeks apart!

We share the same homebirth midwives and now we're in a race to the finish. Who will get our primary midwife (maybe we both can)? What will the weather be (due late December or early January and we both live up a steep hill)? Surely we won't go into labor at the same time. I was counting on having her as my doula and birth photographer. If all goes as planned, we'll still be able to doula each others' births, but one of us will have to attend the other's birth with a newborn in a Moby Wrap and hope that he or she sleeps a lot.

My husband had a different idea. He thought that it actually *would* be a good idea for me and Trebor to go into labor at the same time so that we can get it over all at once, share a birth tub, moo together, then catch each others' babies. Then the men could go watch TV while we women do all that birth stuff. Haha Rick. Um, no thanks.

At any rate, a true best friend will walk with you through any journey in life, and I'm looking forward to sharing this crazy ride with Trebor. It will make for some awesome maternity photos!

Monday, May 9, 2011

I'm pregnant (yes, AGAIN!).

Wednesday, April 20, 2011, I was on day 32 waiting for my cycle. This wasn't unusual for me, since my cycles vary from 26 to 34 days. Rick and I were going on a 3-day-2-night mini-trip without the kids; Rick had a work conference he had to attend and I was tagging along, figuring that I could shop and relax while he was in meetings. (This was a first, literally. We rarely have a babysitter even for one evening. We had never taken a trip without the kids.) We were leaving that evening, so I took the test early that morning, just so I could get a negative result and have it off my mind. I really did NOT anticipate seeing two lines. Just to be sure, I took the second test, which was a different brand, and figured that the odds of two false-positives were nearly nil.

So, I'm pregnant again. This is my 6th pregnancy (5th live baby); my oldest child is 8 (but will be 9 by the time baby comes). I'm due late December 2011 or early January 2012. This should be interesting.

I've put off posting it publicly for a number of reasons. I've had several time-sensitive, time-intensive, stressful issues that I've had to deal with. I'm homeschooling my four kids. I have been teaching private birth classes. My hubby usually works late. And I was just recovering from 2 bouts of strep within a month.

But mostly, I'm not prepared (still) to deal with any criticism. It's nobody's business how many children we have. We're not on public assistance, so nobody can complain that my kids are a tax drain (they're not). I wasn't particularly worried about what my blog readers would say, since many/most of you are birth advocates, birth junkies, and/or birth professionals, and you will probably be happy and excited for me. Maybe you'll follow me on this journey. It's mostly acquaintances or complete strangers who make snide comments.

We believe that every child is a blessing and a gift from God. Even so, this was a bit of a surprise and I'm left feeling a bit unprepared to start alllll over again when things were just starting to get a little bit easier. My (former) youngest is 2 years old and can entertain herself somewhat. My kids can play independently and even make themselves a sandwich (and put all the ingredients away). All 4 of my kids can dress themselves (the oldest two help dress the 2-year-old) and even get themselves buckled into all their car seats in the van. I realize that these things will make life easier when the new baby comes. My children have always been big helpers for whoever the new baby was at a time, and they'll be even more helpful this time around. I'll figure it out, because people do.

Here's a list of stuff not to say to me, at the risk of me snapping at you. Don't push me or you might be on the receiving end of a pregnancy-hormone-laced response.

  • "Don't you know what causes that yet?" 
What I might reply: "Why yes, yes I do. In fact, I teach classes on it; would you like for me to draw you a helpful diagram?" 
What I'm thinking: "Do I look THAT dumb to you? Seriously??? No, I really DON'T know what causes that, because I'm an IDIOT. What do YOU think??? Do you really think you're the first smart-aleck to come up with that one, anyway?"

  • "You know there's a way to stop that, right?" 
What I might reply: "To each their own. I'm glad that your decision worked for you." 
What I'm thinking: "How rude! I don't tell others what to do with their bodies or whether they should or should not be using contraception or have surgery. What right do they think they have to tell me what to do!"

  • "Oh you poor thing. I don't know how you're going to do all that with 5 small children. You sure are going to have your hands full!" 
What I might reply: "I'd rather have my hands full than empty. We're really blessed. We love our kids."
What I'm thinking: "Some days I'm discouraged and intimidated and I don't know how I'll manage this, although I'm trusting God to give me grace to handle it the way He would have me to. However, I don't need any Eeyores hanging around telling me how awful it's going to be. The baby is coming whether you like it or not, so how about offering me encouragement or help or SHUTTING UP?"

  • "Are you trying to have enough to have your own baseball team?"
What I might reply: "Haha. Maybe. I hadn't really thought of that."
What I'm thinking: "Another genius who thinks he's original."

  • "How are you going to pay for college for that many children?"
What I might reply: "I'm an only child, yet somehow nobody managed to set aside money for my college. I was told from a very young age that I would earn an academic scholarship. I knew that I needed to work toward that goal, and I did it. Scholarships are a great possibility."
What I'm thinking: "College degrees have been devalued to the point that they might or might not be the best option for my children when the time comes. They may want to work in a trade or apprentice. Who knows?  Besides, what business is it of yours? How are YOU going to pay for college for YOUR children?"

  • "Are you sure there's only one baby in there???"
What I might reply: "I'm measuring on target for one baby. I'll see baby at the 20 week ultrasound. This is my 6th pregnancy in 9 years, so my body responds to pregnancy hormones and I 'show' very early."
What I'm thinking: "I'm sorry that you think I look like a COW. As if I weren't insecure enough about my belly without your help bringing me down. Try a little sensitivity."

  • "Are they all yours?"

What I might reply: "Yes, they are. We have good kids."
What I'm thinking: "No, they're *not* all mine, I just thought it would be a good idea to babysit a bunch of kids and drag them all over town instead of staying home for the few hours I'd be babysitting."

  • "Wow, better you than me!"

What I might reply: "I agree!"
What I'm thinking: "She set herself up for that one."

That's just the list for starters. I'm sure I'll think of others later. I've heard them ever since my 4th pregnancy (with Evan, the baby we lost in 2007) so this will make the third pregnancy where I have felt that I have to defend myself. Also, I know I'll feel better once I round into the second trimester and the risk of miscarriage drops substantially. Wondering whether this baby will make it has made defending myself doubly hard.

In spite of all that, I don't want anyone or anything to steal my joy. There's a baby inside of me!