August 31, 2012

Week 37: Winter Melon Baby

Week 37
Baby is the size of a winter melon! (?)
Average size n' length: 18.9-20.9 inches & 6.2-9.2 lbs (per the

Baby and I have been feeling pretty good recently! Yes, we are tired, but the great end to last week was a few good workouts in the morning, and now I believe we deserve 5....days off. I went for a walk yesterday with my dad and definitely felt like a true pregnant woman as I waddled my way along the side walk by his side. I'm sure it didn't even last 25 minutes but ohh the pain that hit once we stopped moving! I felt like contractions were taking over every minute, thousands of pins and needles poking my lower abdomen/cervix area. I truly thought that our innocent walk had gone and induced labor on this mama and her babe. Once I arrived at work and took a seat, the pain didn't go away. Instead it made me feel like labor was indeed greeting us all, since the sharp pains came every few minutes and made me grab my gut. The fun stopped shortly after an hour or so went by, and we moved on with our busy work day.

Come on, baby! I am definitely wondering if all that uterine/cervical excitement brought me to another centimeter or two of dilation, though. That would be so exciting! I really am starting to get super stoked about labor to start. I love how it could happen any minute now, but at the same time I could easily find myself very pregnant at the last weeks of September. This mystery of baby's actual birthday is a bit fun, I must say. I just hope the day doesn't come where I am completely sick of being pregnant, only wanting to hold my back and my belly and grump around, making people around me wish they weren't around me, ya know? Let's be joyful, pregnant self, let's enjoy every second! Even the seconds past my due date, if that happens.

Gestational age: 37 weeks
Measuring at: 38 weeks
head down, back on my right, feet kicking to my left \
Heart beat: 150
Active playtime: morning and night, and during the day when I'm hungry or as I just start eating a tasy meal.

Midwife appointment this week went very well. It was such an awesome time for papa-to-be, gma-to-be, and mommy-to-be! Our midwife talked about what is done to prevent tearing of the perineum during birth, we went over my Strep B test results, spoke of pregnancies from 40 weeks and on (overdue babes), and how long they allow mama to labor after the water breaks before induction. She also asked me if she had drawn on my belly yet, meaning - she feels for baby's positioning and draws them on my belly accordingly. It was so amazing! She asked where I felt most of the kicks (my left side) and I told her where I thought the back was since it's always flat and hard to my right, and she felt baby in head-down position. When hubby, mama of mine, and I saw the baby we all started glowing! Edu even looked like he was close to crying, same with my mumsy. Such a special image to capture before we meet the baby!

Prevent tearing: a study recently came out that spoke of new ideas on this. In their practice at Midwife Seattle they are very kean to warm towel compress during pushing, as well as water to soften the perineum. They don't do massage of the area because it is found to cause more irritation than soothing or softening. Also, when it comes to pushing out that baby, the squat position or even a lying down on your side, one-legged squat, cause baby to slide out faster (hey, gravity!) which can lead to tearing. So we'll talk more about other positions we can try when baby is ready to greet the world with their cute head + body. It's funny because Edu and I are reading the "Stage two of labor. Pushing" section of the Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way and they support squating 100% since your pervic area is opened to its max in that position. I agree, and can see how much easier baby Carrillo would come out in a good squat, but also understand how gravity and a giant baby coming out of the small space, that is my lower parts, would be a torn up mess. Hello water birth? We'll see!

Strep B test results: negative! Praise the Lord! Cindie (my midwife) says some 30% of pregnant woman are Step B positive, which is very high, but it's normal since we have lots going on down there. Hello bacteria and loads of extra discharge (TMI? Maybe....)! All they would do at a home birth, in the case of a positive test result, is have an IV in mama's hand during labor and birth. The IV feeds the body with baby-safe antibiotics and prevents them from having the icky strep passed onto them. Cindie said she was very happy I didn't test positive, and so are we!

I then brought up the question of: when would I be induced? What if my water breaks and no baby in 24 hours (I hear most pros want baby out withing 24 hours because of risk of infection or..... dry baby....)? What if my due date comes and a week goes by, how about 2 weeks? What if a crazy more than 2 weeks wants to go by and baby Carrillo doesn't really want to leave his/her comfy, dark home inside me yet? Cindie said that they have steps they take after water breaks to make sure baby and mom are doing fine. If a day or two goes by they won't quickly induce unless they see the need. I believe she mentioned that they've let 3 days pass and both mom n' baby were risk-free and looking good, so they had no need for induction - and baby was beautiful! The same goes for over-due babies. Tests and steps will take place to check on how baby and mami are doing, and if all looks, sounds, and smells (?) well, they'll just take it day by day. She said they delivered a very healthy, 43 week and 3 day baby one time!

Signs of labor:
Dilation: 2cm
Head at: -1 station
Crazy: midwife can feel baby's head!
Water breakage: no, sir.
Mucus plug: zero signs
Contractions: Braxton Hicks-like, somewhat often during the day (woohoo!)
Estimated due date: mid September!

So, after that 2cm dilation discovery, we were told not to expect a 42 week long labor, since this baby seems very ready to escape - and we are very, very ready to meet them!

the eats:
  • veg pizza covered in homemade tomato sauce and nutritional yeast
  • quinoa waffles with nut butter, fig jam and the works
  • curry lentil soup with quinoa
  • lentil black rice burger patties n sweet tater fries
  • 5 minute tortilla pizza with tofu n' more deliciousness!

August 24, 2012

Week 36: Honeydew Baby!

Week 36
Baby is the size of a honeydew!
averaging: 17-19 inches, 4-6 lbs
For God alone my soul waits in silence,
from Him comes my salvation.
He only is my Rock and my Salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
Psalm 62:1-2

oh week 36! How have you already greeted us, how is time moving so quickly? To know we only have 3 more days this week, it's pure crazy-beans! So this week has been a wee-bit uncomfortable at times. The constant headaches from my childhood have decided to return to my life at full throttle. It's starting to feel strange to not have a headache since they've been so consistent this week and I'm simply used to feeling their discomfort. I praise GOD through it all, though, because the frequent pain really brings my thoughts and prayers to Him more often. And being in communication with Jesus throughout a challenging workday is a huge blessing that always strengthens my weary self (physically, mentally, spiritually, you name it).
Check out the growth on that baby! I had an appointment with my lovely midwife on Monday to celebrate 36 weeks! We chose to celebrate with Strep B tests and talk of "when to page us now that you're so close to giving birth" scenarios. She reminded us of the to-buy list she had given us for all that one needs at your typical homebirth (bulk wash clothes, items for baby that most expecting-parents already have like diapers and baby clothes, frequently stumbled upon household items like q-tips and ibuprofen, extra towels and sheets, sanitary pads, etc). We are told to have everything ready by week 37 since baby is full term at that time, and that it thiiiis Monday so we've got to start gathering the goods! The appointment was short and sweet, and we'll now see the midwife on a weekly basis until baby's arrival. Sweet!

Baby's position: head down, back to my right side, feet to my left.
Baby's size: right at 36 weeks, not measuring big or small.
Baby's heart: 120
Baby's playtime: 7:30am & 9:00pm

Eduardo and I have been reading about a Bradley birth (see: Husband Coached Birth and/or Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way) and we're now on the labor section of the book. It's turning out to be so fascinating! We read about the emotional signposts of labor and their important role in telling mommy-to-be and family when baby might make an appearance (along with dilation, and how far apart contractions are). It's super exciting, and I sound craaazy when I say this but I'm kinda stoked about this how labor thing. I know I have no idea how intense the contractions are going to be - but I do feel like the Bradley book has equiped this mama and her hubby with loads of birthing tools. It's all mental, it requires deep relaxation and concentration, it's extreme!

Another fascinating handful of thoughts from the midwife is that birth is very much like participating in an endurance sport. There's training involved in the form of a mental training, preparing yourself mentally for what is ahead since training physically isn't as easy. You have to fuel right before, during and after the event, just like Edu has his special breakfast pre-marathon, his sports drinks and water during the race, and his awesome meal post run. And when you think you can't "push" yourself any further, you must, and you do, and you feel amazing once you hit the finish line! There are, in fact, some physical preparations I've been taking part in. I've been trying to keep up with my kegals to strengthen ye ol' pelvic floor and make all down there much stronger for birth, as well as getting down to squatting position each morning and evening while I brush my teeth, and some other stretches for miss perineum's sake! But I don't think that, even if I had been able to run much more consistently throughout this pregnancy, running or weight lifting would have helped me for birth at all. I do think they would make the jump back onto fitness wagon post-baby an easier transition - but hey! It's not too late to get back into that habit, either.

Speaking of fitness and such: I was able to get myself out of bed yesterday and today just 15 minutes early, walk down to the garage, and do a little strength training! I did a handful of moves with a 10lb kettle bell (squats, lunges, biceps and triceps curls, other weird things that make me feel strong and don't make my baby hurt inside utero) and stretched a little afterward. It's not necessarily to bulk up and look like a hot pregnant woman, it's more for a surge of good-feeling endorphins and a better way to wake myself up before taking on the day. I also have been struggling with headaches these past two weeks and am hoping that by working out (even a little) in the AM will jump-start my day and prevent those icky headaches. Also, I've been walking almost daily during my lunch breaks Monday through Friday. Weekends I'm still sticking with the hubby he tackles his long-distance runs at Green Lake while I take a leisurely walk. So much joy!

Here's what baby and mommy have been eating lately:
a) pinto bean brown rice pizza (Brendan Brazier's recipe)
Ezekiel bun, avocado, sprouted tofu cooked with nutritional yeast and paprika, bell pepper for crunch, roasted sweet potato and russet fries!
c) seaweed salad with avocado and cucumber sushi with a fantastic friend! I ate this twice, then another veg roll, and some edamame joy!
d) oat/quinoa waffles with almond butter, peach, banana, nut butter.

Happy almost 37 weeks!!

August 21, 2012

Baby Shower Joys!

I have to admit, I was very nervous for baby's first shower. The main reason I stopped inviting people to birthday parties of mine was simply because I'm not 100% comfortable surrounded by awesome friends who are celebrating me, my life, my age, or gifting me with things I don't deserve, or really need. What if I can't entertain them? What if they are bored? What if they only show up because they don't want to hurt my feelings and deny the invite? What if they really think I smell but force their sorry bodies to drive to my house? These are the thoughts of an insecure teenager, I tell you. But apparently they followed me well into my 20s, because those are the same type of thoughts that run through my mind when thinking of showing up for my own baby's shower.

But not just one baby shower. This blessed baby Carrillo was showered five times by incredibly loving, kind, giving, serving people in his/her mama's (and papa's) life. It's been a very humbling experience, full of joy. As I arrived for the first shower back in June, I truly felt like I was attending someone else's baby shower. It was a surreal experience as I tried to come to grips with the fact that the newborn onesie in my hands is for our future baby, but got easier each time. And to receive gifts that are for someone else? It's amazing! I know it sounds weird, but honestly hubby and I aren't in need of any gifts - this new life that we're waiting for is the one in need. Of at least one diaper. Of a bed. Of a place to sit while we drive. And goodness me, they have received more than they need. I'm pondering the idea of sending a box off to someone else's baby in need (or baby to be). And thanking GOD for the blessings He pours into our lives. The people we know, the friendships we have made, the family He has given us. We're so undeserving, and He is so full of Grace.

Here are itty-bitty recaps of each shower in photo form. Bring on the laughs, the games, the food, the hugs, and the baby clothes!

 family + friends shower!

 co-workers and friends shower!

church family + friends shower!

hubby's work friends + family shower!

Friends Outdoor Baby Shower!

Praise the Lord, my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
Praise the Lord, my soul,
and forget not all his benefits—
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
Psalm 103:1-5