February 29, 2012

Big Pregnancy Decision: A Homebirth

oh. My. Goodness. Edu wants me to seriously look into a home birth! I’m so excited! He saw photos of the birthing center we were going to choose for the birth, and said it resembled a hotel (the rooms look exactly like a nice hotel room) and that it’d be better at home.
all information brought to you by Google.

·         In the 1950s, most births in the U.S. took place in hospitals. Cesareans, epidurals and heavy doses of pain meds were the norm.
·         This can (but not always) keep a woman from feeling and experiencing birth through their bodies, and the drugs have adverse effects on mom and baby.
·         A mother choosing homebirth must deeply desire to give birth at home. It can save money, but cost along is not sufficient motivation.
·         The most successful home birthers are highly committed and trust their  body’s natural ability to give birth. Devote time and energy to finding the right birth practitioner. Take care of yourself!
·         The prospect of being at home in familiar surrounding provides tremendous comfort and reassurance. Homebirth is safe with a skiller midwife.
·         Families choosing homebirth may be confronted by family members and friends who, conditioned by a society afraid of out-of-hospital births, challenge their decision, feeling it both unwise and unsafe. Showing a strong inner commitment is required to stand up for the right to birth as mom and dad choose. Showing them evidence is helpful.
·         Midwives assist homebirths.
·         A birth plan helps create the desired atmosphere. Special music, candles, individuals present, which room in the home will be the birthing room, what kind of support the mom desires, etc.
·         When labor begins, mom calls midwife
·         At homebirths, family and friends frequently join together to provide encouragement.
·         Midwife helps calm those who are present at birth. Tension in the room can slow down or stop a labor. The midwife handles this so mom and hubby can focus on the birthing process.
·         During labor the hubby and family nurtures the mom. The midwife watches for complication or signs of distress in either mom or baby. Throughout labor, the midwife asks permission to perform any procedure and explains to mom what she is doing and why
·         The birthing process is allowed to take its own course and set its own pace. The general philosophy is that any interventions (administering drugs or trying to hurry things along) cause more harm than good.
·         In the safety and security of her own home, mom can try more labor positions and locations. She can sit on a toilet or walk outside. She can eat or drink whatever she wants. She writes her own script.
·         Occasionally, complications occur during labor. The midwife is trained to recognize the early signs of complications and takes necessary action. Transporting to a hospital may be necessary. For smooth transition, some midwives have their pregnant moms pre-register at a nearby hospital.
·         The rate of cesareans is generally very low for midwives attending homebirths, compared to hospital births. Part of this reason is because most homebirths are kept low risk by good prenatal care. Midwives don’t hurry the birth, ironically speeding things up at times. The midwife and the mother build a personal relationship, this trust helps women let go and have their babies more easily.
When talking to my midwife about this, she gave me an awesome run-down of how things would go with a homebirth, step by step. It was so comforting to my mom and my husband, who were both a little nervous about the homebirth thing. Here’s what info I got:

·         All the same prenatal care is received for hospital or out-of-hospital births
·         Toward the end of pregnancy, I’d fill out out-of-hospital birth consent paperwork
o    Risks, etc, sign off it
o    Packet of supplies and where to purchase them
o    A list of things to have at home (old towels and such)
·         Call midwife with any contractions (just as we would if we were to have the baby at the birthing center or hospital)
·         One midwife will be at home during contractions, then upon pushing another will arrive to assist (another midwife or someone trained in birthing assist).
·         I would return to the center for a 2 and 4 week appt with midwives
·         Monitor baby, full newborn check upon birth, any concerns we’d go to a hospital
·         At 10 days – first pediatrician appt
·         The midwives call us day after to check on mom and baby
·         Waterbirth in standard tub isn’t do-able since baby has to be completely under water upon birth
·         Doppler checks baby’s heart throughout labor and pushing every 5 minutes or so
·         Emergencies? All depend: a very true emergency, ambulance would be called and we’d go to the nearest hospital. Non-emergency transfer in a car to hospital.
·         Vitamin K shot is done at the house

buckwheat soba noodles and cilantro, pepper, sesame dressing. oh delights to my belly!

February 28, 2012

Pregnancy Workout: the STAIRS

Tackling the 77 stairs at work. I think I should nickname this pregnancy as the 77 Stair Journey. It's all I do. That, and try to figure out baby's food aversions and cravings, which is a very difficult thing to resolve, seeing as how these foods change abouuut every 13 minutes. Dang baby. These stairs are always here, don't change at all, and keep my leg muscles in constant movement. Bonus? My heart rate goes up just a tad, so I'm getting in a wee-bit of cardiovascular training in as well. Hot mess! Oh, stairs. Oh, pregnancy.

I think the mini baby bump is for real. I keep trying to deny its true existence, convincing myself and others that, although it looks like a baby (ie: uterus growing under my belly button) it's really just the result of caloric increase and decreased activity. This is fact. I am sure of it. I'm a chubby buns and I'm just going to accept it. But now? It's always there: the bump. It does grow a bit when I need to use the restroom (TMI) which just so happens to be every 30 minutes or so (TMI x2) and it shrinks when I lie down for bed on my back and suck in (score! Automatic trim waist line!). Yet, when at work, whether I just ate a loaf of french bread or not, I has meself a belly. A belly that doesn't disappear when I suck in, doesn't seem like the result of too many carbs, and a belly that may in fact be a baby. Get excited!

My knees ache. Oh stairs. And I feel my breakfast, from an hour ago, wanting to greet me. Le sigh. Stair time has come to a pause. Wouldn't it be nice if the weather report wasn't calling for snow today, and I could spend the next 10 minutes walking outside before work? Now wouldn't that be oh, so, nice. Yes, yes it would.

2 brown rice blueberry muffins with nut butter, fig jam, apple and more almond butter. oh bfast joy. or was this dinner? hm...
 PS: no work outs at home yet this week, but depression (and, well, just feeling plain blue and weak) has not tried to take over my thoughts. Praise God! I think it's from diving into the Bible, really soaking up everything I read, and rubber cementing it to my brain cells. Hmm. My belly it sticking out. Maybe this dress was a bad idea. I feel like a bloated, 11.5-week pregnant woman, who shouldn't really have a bump yet, and therefore, is simply huge and needs to jump on a treadmill.


February 27, 2012

Week 11: Lime Baby

11 weeks. 
baby is the size of a lime!
Pregnancy is okay this morning. My big goal and prayer for the week was to make the 5:00am (ish) wake up time a priority. I have come to realize how very important it is to maintain that routine, as sleepy and lazy as I have become, in order to maintain my sanity. Although, with an unplanned wake up call last night around 1:00am that kept me up for almost a full hour that felt like five hours, I decided that 6:22am would be a lot more friendly. So, Monday, you didn't include that delicious workout in the livingroom, but that's okay. Because you also didn't include an awkward drive to work because miss preggo didn't feel depressed, pitiful or blue. What you did include, Monday, was a walk in the ice, frozen hands, phone journaling in 15 degrees Fahrenheit, and and ice pond. You also included a nice chat with me mum, a tasty, filling and nutrient-loaded breakfast wrap (sprouted tortilla, banana, almond butter, cinnamon, wheat germ, chia seeds, raisins and a microwave!) And 77 stairs, up and down and up and down some more. Workout baby workout!

the same as 7,000 times this month: tofu scramble, brussel sprouts, avocado n' tomato
my only Rock during this pregnancy that never lets me down and never changes: God's Word!

Last night, I did discover the sadness that is ye ol' inevitable nighttime nausea. It hits, without falt, each night anywhere from 7:15 to 8:00, gets better with a tooth brushin', and forces me to bed - whatajoy. Anyhow, I tried to attack it with a new strategy that I somply call: starvation (since my usual mug of kashi nuggets, rice milks n' frozen blueberries hasn't been too friendly to the tummy) and refused (almost) to feed myself (or my baby) for fear of feeling that nasty uncomfortable, queasiness that controls every part of my body. It was all going fine, until some freshly washed grapes tempted me, and since I was feeling light-headed, grumpy and lethargic, I figured a large serving of grapes would be gentle to me. And they was - thank You, Lord!! The only issue with grapes is that they sure as heck won't fill you up or satisfy your incredibly hungry baby - so very shortly you'll feel the hungry creep back into your evening, and once again you'll have to choose: starve or eat, risking full-blown nausea right before bed. I talked to Edu (okay, I whined like a baby) about what to do, and we quickly agreed that I should obviously EAT, even though nothing sounded good - except for maybe a brownie. So baby and I munched on an apple from the fridge, and I brought along a jar of unsalted cashews - which I had every intention of partaking in for some good ol' protein and yummy fat - but of course, after the wittle apple, I felt like poo. So off to bed I went. With a tummy ache. And zero hope for Monday evening.

Le sigh.

February 24, 2012

Really Hormones, Really?!

10 weeks and some days pregnant.
depression is back. I really wish I could simply focus on my Savior and be totally filled. All I want is to be genuinely happy, especially toward my mom in the morning, as we drive to work. She deserves so much better, and I treat her very poorly when I'm grumpy. I think four whole days have come and gone, four opportunities to get out of bed and do a workout before work. And I have ignored each one, out of pure laziness. Before this week, it seemed almost impossible to wake up before 6:15. I was exhausted, the energy had been sucked out of me from baby, and nausea made even a simple bicep curl with a 5lb weight a rough task. So I listened to everyone, I took things down a notch, I rested. And now I can't break the habit. I don't need the extra hour of lazy sleep anymore, I go to bed at a lovely time and feel great at 5am. Sometimes I just lie there and imagine my entire workout - whether it be a fun time in the living room in a sports bra and capris with my mini-tummy hanging out, doing yoga with a 30-something year old shirtless guy that has nicer hair than I do, or a 20-minute something or other on the carpetted floor right in front of our bed (do push ups! Then plank! Then lunges! Side lunges? Sure! More push ups!). But I struggle. Dang bed, dang comfy sheets, stupid soft, squishy pillow, darn dark, cozy room, blasted sleep-loving new self!

And because of this, foolishly, I have found myself depressed. And disrespectful to those I love most. All because I feel fat n' lazy, and I'm not used to it. I've really come to believe that if only I had an awesome baby bump to rock, and maaaybee I could eat one leafy green or one raw carrot without gaging, that all of these other symptoms would be easier to handle. If only. But that will come with time (or so I've heard) so I must be patient and embrace all these crazy changes. I must. I just must. "But I can't, I simply can't!" (Said with a British accent).

lentil burger on sprouted bun with pickle joy.
lentil meatballs and homemade chunky vegetable sauce with kale
At least there's food, right?

the end!

February 23, 2012

Pregnancy Ain't So Bad After All

Mt.Rainier from our bedroom window - gorgeous morning

Pregnancy has gotten better. Overnight. After many heated discussions on midwifery, birthing centers, OBGYNs and hospitals. After many insurance phone calls, after talking numbers, after tears and (a little) voice raising (okay, more than necessary). After nausea, migraines, going to bed early and waking up late. After not being able to cook, hating the smell of my kitchen sink, living off of whole wheat toast and Larabars. After not caring, giving in, eating a piece of my mom's homemade pizza with cheese, having a few bites of extra sharp cheddar cheese for the first time in over 2 years, inhaling a large slice of Costco cake at a 3-year-old's birthing party, gobbling up sweet potato chips in the breakroom at work because they're "healthy" and sneaking in a handful of slightly-cold french fries and the "crack sauce" they are paired with, out of a mini-to-go box in the backseat of my mom's truck after she had a lunch party with her lovely co-workers. After feeling depressed, queasy during a short weight-lifting session, attempting prenatal pilates, not being able to wake up in time for a good workout, feeling weak, getting thicker and losing muscle....

I feel good. God is my true source of peace and joy. My Savior has blessed Eduardo and I in ways we still cannot fathom. We made a baby. It is nothing short of a full-blown miracle. My Heavenly Father is always near, always holding my closely, incredibly powerful and divine, and He wants me to look to Him for happiness - not to my growing gut (which isn't a baby yet, it's mainly the increased amount of white bread and decreased amount of strength training) or to my a-whole-lot-less-than-perfect diet, or to the fatigue that had overwhelmed me in the first weeks of pregnancy. Because guess what? None of this will ever satisfy me! I will forever be empty, the good feelings will be temporary, and I will find myself to be a grumpy first-trimester complainer that no one wants to be around (and trust me, this is the exact definition of Nicole Carrillo from week 6 to week 11).

scrambled tofu, roasted brussel sprouts, sprouted tortillas, the works.
quinoa stir fry with cabbage and peppers!
straight up potato DELICIOUS!

February 22, 2012

Birthing Center? Hospital? Homebirth?

Comparing birthing center costs to hospital costs. In the end? They both take my insurance, I’m definitely more for the comfort and home-like environment of a birthing center, and we’d really only save a few hundred bucks at the birthing center instead of a hospital. We also looked at having a home birth, but haven’t decided yet. It kind of (really, really) scares hubby but that’s because it simply sounds crazy to birth at home since it’s so uncommon in the United States. We’re reading a lot about all the options we have and love that no matter where we choose to have our wee-baby, God is ultimately in control of the whole process. And we trust Him fully! 

a delicious fried rice with BROCCOLI! from a restaurant. I was so happy I was eating broccoli that I could care less about it being white rice, or the chicken-broth soup they served before the meal. Bliss in the little things, for sure!
More tortilla pizza tooodaaayy :)

February 21, 2012

Can't Get Out of BED!

I'm 10 weeks and 2 days pregnant. Last night I wrote about this "not getting any easier" and the lack of energy I had to wake up at my 5:00am alarm to do yoga. I also felt completely defeated by the late PM nausea that has been hitting me nightly, without fail, after my last bite of food. It's overwhelmingly powerful and frustrating. Especially how I react to it: irritated, angry, not wanting Edu anywhere near me. It makes me dislike everything, especially every scent in this entire house, including my loving spouse. I feel like a monster, really. But smells are so powerful when you're nauseated! Anyhow. I woke up to the 5:00am sound of Beethoven's Fur Elise and, surprisingly, was wide awake. I couldn't believe it. I tried to remember the previous night: did I go to bed early, giving me more than enough rest and energy to get up at my normal time? No, I went to bed after nine, which should make me sleepy. Should I go do a good hour of yoga? Yes, but I've become so accustomed to the new 6am wake-up time that I'd rather not move. Le sigh. Le guilt. I then proceeded to lie there until 5:45am - better than most days, and get a wee-15 minute workout in - right in my bedroom. Hoorah! Here's to Tuesday....we'll see what happens.


a new favorite: Ezekiel 4:9 sprouted tortilla pizza!
Garbanzo pancakes with nut butter, hemp seed, nanner, and toast of course

February 20, 2012

Week 10: Prune Baby

week 10
baby size of a prune!

week nine baby!
Week 10 commences…wait, wait, back track. Week nine had a lot of hope. After three weeks of constant nausea, 1 week of nauseating, debilitating migraines that lasted throughout the day, and a day off from work that re-vamped me for life (but the re-vamp died after a day or so) – I had this itty, bitty, glimpse of light. I woke up one morning before 5:30 (first time since Mexico!) and did a full hour of yoga, that day and the day after I felt achy muscles for the first time in forever! And it brought me a great smile. I had some delightful meals: crunchy whole wheat bun, toasted, mashed avocado, lentil (or pinto bean! Only once, but I didn’t have trouble with it – yay pinto beans again!) burger, mustard, unsweetened ketchup, tomato, grilled veggies and fries. I made quinoa and brown rice blueberry muffins. I did have to eat toast every morning because ,after a big bowl of steel cut oats on Monday, I wrestled with the second worse case of after-a-meal nausea that I’ve ever experienced. And thus? Half a roll of multi-grain saltines into my belly. Le sigh….baby wanted veggie sushi one day and bread. Mom purchased the 2 pack of huge whole wheat baguettes from Costco, we went to twon on one of them in the truck and then I proceeded to cucumber sushi…and a ROUGH veggie sushi with cream cheese (removed, although I enjoyed the little tastes of it left on the rice) with raw carrot (ick!) some greens (bleck..) and not enough rice (torture!). so.. never again. I did choose to bring soy back into my life. So good and SO PROTEIN for this, so the baby can grow happily. It has been good. Anyhow. Week 10 has made me sickly again, and 5:00am is for sleeping, only, not exercise. Oh Nicole, oh mommy-to-be, say goodbye to your muscles. Accept it. 

 and then the pregnant lady ate:
toast, mashed avocado, tomato: the only dinner I could handle one night.
the sad sushi from the story above!
lentil burger heaaaven!
my first homemade tamales! all I want is starch. and the pinto beans were just me being optimistic. wasn't able to eat them, unfortunately.
sprouted soy is better than just any soy, right? it was delicious.
scrambled tofu! paprika, chili powder, loooads of nutritional yeast. oh my goodness gracious.
sprouted corn tortilla, avocado, tofu scramble, tomato
toast, almond butter, coconut, frozen berries: the only dinner I could handle another night :)
my mid-morning protein booster!
we found unsweetened coconut icecream at PCC market here in town. it was delicious and rich and chocolate!
sprouted garbanzo blended into a wet-flour, added olive oil, sprinkle of salt, and water to make protein-rich pancakes. they were fantastic!

February 14, 2012

The Pregnancy Identity Crisis

Oh baby, where are you?
It's just so strange. It's as if I don't care about myself anymore. You'd think that, because I'm carrying a fragile life inside of me that I am supposed to take care of, I'd eat even better than I did before, and I'd exercise even more, and I'd be extremely joyous. I mean, I'm FINALLY pregnant! I've been hoping for this for so long. But I have been struggling. I don't love myself anymore. I can't stomach vegetables, my favorite dishes have become my least favorite. It's so strong that it makes me gag to even think about it. I dislike this new body- I'm always sick to my stomach, or battling migraines, or rejecting salads while I reach for a piece of cake. Who am I?!?! I don't recognize myself, I have no idea who I am anymore and I am struggling with it. I don't have any control over it. It changes every day. I've seemed to stop caring about myself or something. About what is put in my body, about health. Oh God, oh God, I am so weak.

And yet, I am blessed. Because I do not have to depend on my own strength, but on God's strength living in me. I know I can do this, it's just such a struggle.  

I miss running. I miss the beautiful feeling of going faster going farther than yesterday. I miss those delicious, filling, rich green monster smoothies. I miss how good they taste, how amazing my body feels afterwards. I miss being different at work - the only one who cares less about the junk food, and inspires people to eat fruit instead. I miss being the different one - who never goes out to eat, always cooks delicious meals, and feeds my hubby. I miss cooking for him, cooking for us, and loving it. I miss making him smile with new dishes, his same ol' favorite dishes. I miss him. I miss him. I miss feeling strong, alive, awake. I miss those incredible workouts in the gym. I miss pushing my body to grow stronger - doing things I was never able to do before. I miss growing. I miss loving my body. I hate it now. I miss a life of zero headaches, of a happy body working the way it should - on all plants and no garbage. On exercise. I miss it so much. I miss Green Lake with Edu. I miss surprising him with my time. I miss races. Racing with him - training Saturday mornings. I miss waking up before 5am to run at the high school track with him. I miss seeing him at every lap, being inspired and motivated. I miss growing with him. I miss being happy about life, excited about life, inspired by other people's lives. I miss talking to God and thanking Him. All I do now is ask Him to help me.

I miss it all so much.
Oh, hormones...

February 11, 2012

Pregnancy Break: Free Time

Friday, February 10th, was a glorious day. I was given a free day. Free from work, free from worry, free from a packed lunch, a rushed breakfast, a sleepy workout, my husband having to eat his same-ol' bowl of oats, and having to use the microwave for dinner, all alone. Everything tasted spectacular, all the day's activities were superb, and it was much more than any ideal. Pregnant? It's like I was human again! I'm liking these days of happy baby in my tummy!!

oat-loaded chia squares!

raw date brownies from mynewroots.com :)

Oh She Glows' frozen glo bites!
End. SO HAPPY today. Days off are delicious and magical.

February 10, 2012

Week 8.5: Raspberry Baby

Week 8 
baby is the size of a raspberry!

So…life didn’t get much easier since last post. I felt more nauseated, had more food aversions, felt more tired, less energetic, less able to work out. 3 straight weeks. Monday this week I woke up with a surprise from the baby-making-factory that is my body and had ZERO NAUSEA! I was very happy but also very cautious about celebrating because I didn’t know how long the beauty would last. After dinner, though, it was made known how long it would last: about half a day. I got my first debilitating head ache, which transformed into a full-on migraine, which lasted fooouuur daaaays. Today is Friday. I was given the day off. I ate waffles, I ran 3 miles, I painted. I ate lentil burgers and sweet potato fries, I cooked for spouse. I had zero migraine and only slight nausea. Praise God from whom all blessings flow, even the little ones!! Baby (or Caesar salad) did, however, give mommy a case of AM icky tummy. But we can’t have perfect days when we’re making babies, now can we? 2nd ultrasound appt on Monday – midwives meet & greet on Wednesday. So excited!!

the very wimpy, sad, carb drawer at work. It's called pregnancy and the first trimester, friends!

February 1, 2012

Pregnancy Challenges

Our first ultrasound!! itty, bitty, cute baby!!

Carrying a little one inside your lower abdomen is not the simplest of tasks. This has changed me in more ways than I had anticipated, and it has turned into much more than the sweet idea of rocking a baby bump. I longed for this moment in my life, my husband and I talked about it often and got excited (and nervous) just thinking about it. The early morning we found out we were expecting, we couldn't sleep. We both tossed and turned, he said he couldn't stop shaking, and our minds raced. I didn't have any symptoms except for the feeling of pure joy and disbelief, with a little bit of fatigue on the side. "Do you have any cravings? Do you feel nauseated or anything?" My mami-in-law asked me. Nothing. Told you: pure joy.

It wasn't until we prepared to fly back home that I started feeling different. Edu started to feel the first signs of influenza, which stuck with him for a whole week after we got back, and his twin brother caught a stomach virus at the same time. As I sat in the plane and watched my poor hubby shake, sweat and cough repeatedly, I couldn't avoid feeling incredibly anxious, sad, and sick myself. All I wanted to do was help him, take away his pain, and see my parents. I longed to give my parents the good news about our 6-week-old bebe in my tummy, but all I could see ahead was the 12 hours of travel between us. I cried uncontrollably the entire flight.

I'm about 7 or 8 weeks along now. I have been struggling with constant nausea for 3 weeks. I have been waking up at my regular "get up and SWEAT!!" hour (5:00am) but haven't been able to make it through more than a 15-20 minute workout. And I have yet to actually sweat. I'm exhausted, I absolutely love sleeping - it's the only time I don't feel sick to my stomach or sleepy (hah). But I know my body benefits from a little exercise, so I've been trying to do a little Pilates when I have the strength, and walking when I have/make time.

But I really don't feel like myself. I feel like a completely different person. I don't like any of the same foods that I always have, and all I can do is pray that our baby is receiving all that they need for a happy development. All I want is bread, since it sits nicely in my tummy and eases nausea.

Welcome to the pregnancy journal. It will get better, I will complain less, and there will posts full of pure joy, I just know it.