40 weeks, what?!

I can not BELIEVE I’m 40 weeks this Monday! How crazy! I feel like this pregnancy just flew on by! It had to be just yesterday that I found out I was pregnant again?? Wasn’t it just last week that I found out we were having another girl?? Come on, only a few days since I switched to my midwife?!?!?

That is literally how fast this pregnancy has felt. haha Now I’m just sitting here waiting for labor to start. :p Every twinge gets me all antsy and news of friends going into labor is making me feel nuts! haha

Come on little one! Mommy wants to meet you!

Had another appointment yesterday and everything is still looking great and got myself adjusted by the chiropractor to help relieve some of my end of pregnancy woes (haha My poor back).

Patience is a virtue right? I need some sent my way 😉

keep-calm-were-waiting-a-baby-1

38 weeks and counting….

So last week I decided that I was really over FB. Everything was getting on my  nerves and I knew that it would just get worse as the days went by and I got closer and closer to d-day. So I made my last post and have happily just sat on the sidelines since then. I just have to say that I enjoy just lurking, commenting here and there on other people’s posts, watching out for my friend’s to go into labor and writing to my mommy groups way more than posting to my own wall. No idea why, but I just feel calmer doing that. Not to mention everyone who needs to get a hold of me knows I’ll answer a pm or text message really promptly, so it hasn’t effected my social life at all. lol

Now to what I’m sure everyone is really interested in: me being 38 weeks and 3 days today. I’m getting down to the end and I just can’t wait! 2 of my friends have had their babies this week and I couldn’t be happier for them but its also making me really impatient! LOL
I just keep telling myself that she ISN’T coming early, so I can’t even get that into my mind and she WILL be late, so I can’t get to excited yet. I have a minimum of 2 more weeks to go! I wouldn’t be surprised if she didn’t show up till I was 42 weeks. She has the stubborn genes for it  and I’m willing to wait it out till she is ready. 😉

Had my 38 week appointment with my midwife today and River sounds amazing, is sitting in a good position (Yay for no longer being OP!), my weight gain is awesome and my sugar levels are perfect. Everything looks wonderful. I couldn’t be happier to hear that.
Now we quite literally just have to wait her out. lol Matt thinks she will either be a few days early or her 40th week and I think she is going to be really late. :p We shall see who is right!

I literally feel jittery with excitement to get my healing home birth and to see my beautiful new daughter’s face.

Come on baby girl, we are ready for you! ❤

Tiger strips and baby weight

I’ve fallen into this trap before where I give birth, (thinking back on Elenore) and than I think after a short month that I should be back to pre-pregnancy body and be  back to what I was before. How wrong I was!

tiger-stripes

Than you look around and see all these mothers who literally drop all this weight after birth and you feel inadequate. Aren’t you supposed to do the same thing? You are working your butt off and can’t seem to get the weight off or even if you do get the weight off your tummy forever looks like a tiger slashed you with its claws. What is a girl to do??

Have you ever thought to just throw out the scale, stand in front of our husband’s and see how much they love us and how beautiful we are to them even with the baby weight and stretch marks? Or better yet, look in the mirror and see how great you look. Is all the fat gone? No. But do you feel better and look better in the mirror? Yes? Than take that and hold it to your heart! We don’t all have to look like super models or run way models. Some of us are always going to have a small tummy after giving birth (dang you stretched ab muscles!) or will never again be able to wear a bikini because of our tiger scratches, but you know what? We are still beautiful because we carried our beautiful children (child) for 9 months and gave them life! How miraculous and beautiful is that??

God made us to carry children and we should be proud of that AND what our bodies now look like after we bring them into this world.

I, myself, struggle with this and am just now accepting my stretch marks (which are now being joined by some more because of my current pregnancy) and my beautiful daughter was born over 2 years ago. I’m hoping this time that I can come to the point where I am proud of my stretch marks and can show my beautiful daughters that its OK to never be super model thin, or have a “perfect” body.I remember as a teen struggling with  my body and all the girls around me were also struggling to be “perfect”. We all had something that we hated about ourselves and I can remember a specific photo shoot for my Water polo team when a good portion of us had the photographer photograph us with our legs hidden by the pool because “we hated our legs”. I was one of them. I than was shocked when Matt (my boyfriend and future husband) took one look at the photo (which I was nervous to give him because I thought I looked horrible) and told me how gorgeous I was and than showed the picture off to everyone he could show at school. I was mortified! Than he proceeded to tell me that one of his favorite teachers saw the photo and commented that “she has a body you can bounce a quarter off of!” and how proud he was of that. I was dumbfounded. All I could see was what was “wrong” with me in the picture and not what I see now which is that I was super healthy, super fit and gorgeous. Oh how I wish I could head back in time and tell that young girl that she didn’t need to hide anything from the photographer or be embarrassed at games and wear a towel so that my legs didn’t show. I was beautiful and didn’t need to be ashamed.

We just need to be OK with the bodies God gave us and to live as healthy as we can and take care of these bodies. I personally want to show my girls that they are beautiful; no matter what (even after 25+ pounds of  baby weight and stretch marks galore!), and that when they do find their future husbands that they will love them no matter what they look like either. They are beautiful and have beautiful souls and our physical bodies have nothing to do with it and the right men will see that.

Women we need to show our young girls all of this and the only way to do that is to show with our actions and words. Do you constantly talk about the current “diet” you are on? Are you always worried about what much the scale is saying? Do you take a compliment that your husband gives you and say “but….” in front of your daughters? Do you despise your stretch marks and remark on them in the ear shot of your girls??

We need to stop it. We need to learn how to love ourselves as we are and to show our young girls that they are  beautiful no matter what.  We need to just show them that we need to stay healthy (whether healthy is 134 lbs for one daughter and 150 for another) and to be active but not to take it to the extreme and not to focus on the scale. Or better yet, never even have a scale in your home!

And don’t forget about dad’s part in this. Its not all the mom’s job.  Daddy is the first man that will tell her that she is beautiful. The first man that she will look to for approval in her outfits as she comes out of her room all dressed up for an occasion. He is the first person that  her little heart will turn to to know if she is beautiful. I know the most heart bursting emotions were always when my daddy called me beautiful or when he would just nod his approval over my outfit and I just knew that he thought I looked pretty. Dad is very important to a young girl. I know that my husband tries very hard to let Elle know that she is beautiful. She may not understand yet, but when she is a teen it will make  her heart and spirit glow. Same with our little River.

How different would our teenage years be if we weren’t constantly worried about our weight, our looks, or how we appeared? I want that for my daughters. I hope you want that for them as well and we try our best to help them through the hardest years of their lives confident and independent young women ready to take on the world.

 

Home Birth Q &A

So since yesterday’s post I have seen many of the same questions being asked over and over again and I figured I should just write them down so if you are curious, you can check it out 🙂

1. How does a midwife watch the baby’s heart rate  if she doesn’t have a fetal monitor?– Midwives bring along with them Doppler’s, and stethoscopes that are meant to listen to the baby’s heart beat externally. Since I am a VBAC they will be listening at the beginning of the contraction and at the end of the contraction to see how our little one is handling the contractions. If I was not a VBAC they would check intermittently and try to check after a set amount of time or if they feel they need to check for some unknown reason. Midwives are very educated on how to detect a baby in distress.

2. What if something goes wrong?

– Again Midwives are very educated in birth and know how to handle the majority of situations. If it’s something they can’t handle they would immediately send me to the hospital for the care that they couldn’t provide.  A very small number of their laboring women actually need to be sent to the hospital.

3. If something went wrong, how far from the hospital are you?

– We are actually in the optimal range for something like this. Less than 5 minutes from the nearest OB and NICU.

4. Doesn’t the idea of giving birth at home make you nervous?

-Actually no. I have been researching home births and water births since way before I got pregnant with our angel  baby and before we got pregnant with River. Through my research I discovered that Midwives in Birthing Centers and Home birth situations have the lowest fetal and maternal deaths and the least amount of emergency outcomes than even hospitals. I’m actually safer at home than in a hospital surrounded by nurses and doctors.  Don’t get me wrong, Obs are amazing, but there is no reason why a healthy pregnant mother needs an OB at her side during a natural birth. They are over kill for the majority of us 😉 When they are needed though, I’m very thankful we have them.

5. So what is your home birth going to look like: if all goes as planned?

-I envision my home dimly lit, Enya playing on the radio, my husband, my midwife and her assistant all there to support me through the labor and encouraging me through each contraction. I see me walking, laying in  my birthing tub, squatting and just doing what comes natural to me in the moment. I see my midwife checking the baby’s heart beat periodically and trying her best to not be intrusive and mess up the rhythm I’ve figured out. I see me telling them when I’m ready to push and giving birth to our newest princess in a perfectly calm, warm and gentle birthing tub with all of them standing by my side. I see being able to instantly bond with  my child and be the first to even touch her.

Everything about it says calm and peace to me. And that is the complete opposite of what Elenore came into the world with. If all goes as I want, River will be born into a loving environment. Just like God intended.

6. Where is Elenore in all of this?

– One of our wonderful friends has already told us that she would take our daughter when I go into labor so that I can concentrate without having to worry about my 2 year old. We have truly wonderful friends.  And if I go into labor at night I might just let Elenore sleep through it and than leave when she wakes up. All comes down to when River wants to make her debut.

If you  have anymore questions about Home birth in general, I’m very willing to answer them. Only respectful inquires please. I’m not going to debate with you, but I will have a conversation with curious minds 🙂

Much love,
Mama Berry

We’re gonna take the plunge!

I debated even writing this since I know that I’m going to have people telling me that I’m nuts, but after some thought I figured, why not? I’ve been completely open with you guys up to this point, why not now?

So here it is: after a discussion with  my OB last week,  I came out of the experience feeling discouraged, scared, and completely let down. From the moment I knew I was pregnant she had been encouraging me and telling me that she would do everything in her  power to get me my VBAC and my 100% natural birth.  I was over joyed, I had found an amazing OB who was going to support me with my birth plan! I knew this was something that was rare, and I told everyone I knew that she was amazing and that she fully supported natural birth. She had even said to me that “she trusted women’s bodies to know what to do” and that was music to my ears.

Than it was like she flipped  a switch last week and wasn’t the same doctor. I went into the appointment anticipating to have the my birth plan discussed, have my questions answered and to come out feeling OK with my hospital birth. (Since the hospital birth has been a compromise with my husband from day one) Everything was going great until I started asking for specific percentages, and her specific ideas as to how my birth journey was going to go. It was like I was seeing a completely different OB. She suddenly wasn’t optimistic about my birth plan anymore and kept referring to her experience that was women who had previous c-sections couldn’t give  birth vaginally. When I asked her how many VBACs she had even seen she said only 3 and “only 1 made it, but she had had a vaginal birth before so….” I was shocked.  She didn’t even believe that I could make it and she was supposed to be a “VBAC supportive provider”?  That’s when she really started throwing wrenches into my birth plan:  I couldn’t walk past 6 cm or 5 cm if  my water had already broken, I was required to than lay down and have an internal monitor put on for the duration of my labor, (I.E break my water and screw a device into my child’s head), I couldn’t at that point use the labor tub or the shower, I was required to have an IV placed, (no option for Hep lock) and if “I didn’t progress” she was rushing me to c-section. No waiting, no chance to stand up and attempt to kick start my labor again, nothing.  I was to be prepped for surgery and that was it.

At this point she was really getting annoyed that I didn’t look as optimistic and that I was continuing to ask questions. That woman couldn’t get out of the room fast enough. I was utterly stunned. What happened to the OB that I had  been having great conversations with for the last 27 weeks of my pregnancy?!

I went home and just cried. It felt like she had pulled the rug out from under my feet. Matt wasn’t as stunned, apparently he had guessed she wasn’t what I thought she was and was just letting me figure it out on my own. I would have appreciated an heads up! haha He just held me and said we would figure something out.

That began the most frustrating, head ache inducing, intense round of deep conversations we have had in a long time. I felt like we were talking circles around each other: he wanted to stick with the Hospital birth and just go in ready to fight for what we wanted and to wait as long as possible at home so that I had a chance to labor naturally for as long as possible before they put the monitors on me and made me lay down. Sounds reasonable enough, but I had completely given up on the idea of having any kind of natural labor and delivery if we went to the hospital and had our OB calling the shots. I poured out all my fears, sorrows, disappointments and just lack of faith in the hospital. I didn’t trust the OB anymore and I really didn’t trust the nursing staff to let me do what I needed to do without a fight and a hostile environment unfolding in my hospital room.  Matt was just as dumbfounded. We were at a cross roads: we both knew what the other wanted and were both not willing to fold.

We slept on it Thursday night, brought it up again Friday night, got no where, slept on it again, mildly brought it up Saturday night, got a tiny bit of progress and than we made it to Sunday night and we decided to just sit down and talk till we had a solution. This talking in circles was getting exhausting.

I had been talking to other VBAC women, my mother and my Child birthing instructor and  had come to the conclusion that our only option was to get a midwife and have the home birth that I had been wanting from day one. I didn’t see any other solution that would not guarantee me a c-section at the end of a frustrating labor experience. I could tell I hadn’t shocked him, he had guessed that is where my thoughts had been going. His only concern was cost,  Midwives are not cheap. He informed me that he would have been perfectly fine with a home birth if our insurance had even covered a tiny bit of the cost. I didn’t think this was something he was willing to bend on and I was getting really hopeless. He than surprised me and told me he would look at our finances and see if it was even a possibility. I couldn’t believe it. He was at least looking!

After a long, agonizing 30 minutes on my part, I threw the idea of not eating out anymore and using that money for payments towards the midwife. That got me a reaction: he was all for it! Suddenly it was like he had a huge burden off his shoulders and we both could breathe.

We went to bed that night excited for the birth of River Lee, calm and utterly content in our decisions. We were doing it! We were going to have an all natural water/home birth with a midwife at our side.

I couldn’t be more a peace with our decision and for the first time since I talked to our OB last week I feel the fear, and tension leaving my body. I am getting what I wanted in the first place: a calm, 100% natural water birth in the comfort of our own home.

Yes, I do believe we have made the jump into the true realm of “hippie”. haha

Labor is just around the bend….

I can’t believe that I’m in the 3rd trimester! Time really flies by when you have a toddler to care for. haha

So today I was thinking about all the different things I have learned this pregnancy and the things I learned before I even got pregnant and thought, I should probably write them all down! So here is all the things I found absolutely fascinating and have stuck in my head for my upcoming labor and delivery 🙂

1. Red Raspberry Tea- Did you know that Red Raspberry tea drunk all throughout your pregnancy and 2-3 cups a day in your third trimester actually tones your uterus and can aid in labor? Wow! I love that! Reading posts from women who have drank the tea have all had wonderful labors, some even boasting that they had 4 hour labors! Now that is something I can jump on board with. haha (No desire to have another 18 hour labor ending in a “no progress” label and c-section)

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/red-raspberry-leaf-tea-benefits.html

2. Dates- Did you know that dates eaten the last trimester promotes a easier, faster, and more efficient labor? Yep! They recommend 6 dates a day for the last 4-6 weeks of your pregnancy for optimal benefits.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21280989

3. Evening Prime rose Oil- Evening Prime rose oil taken orally at the beginning of pregnancy can help break down scar tissue from previous interventions and c-sections. Also, when taken at the end of pregnancy (Orally or vaginally) its believed to soften the cervix and start labor.

http://www.pregnanthealth.com/evening-primrose-oil/

4.  Spinning babies are techniques that help get a baby into optimal positioning for labor and delivery. They even can get a breech baby head down! I’ve been doing some of the moves for a few weeks now and River is most definitely head down now. haha

http://spinningbabies.com/

5. Pushing on your back is a big NO, NO! When you push in the normal hospital pushing position (on back, legs up) you are actually making it harder for the baby to descend into the birth canal and out.  They are forced down and than up again from the angle of your tail bone. This makes pushing harder on mommy and baby and can lead to a vacuum or forceps assist.  Optimal pushing position is in the birth squat. This position allows gravity to help the baby descend, keeps the baby’s head in the optimal descent position, and makes the angle of birthing straight down; aiding in mother’s pushing as well.

https://i0.wp.com/www.childbirthcare.com/mod/userpage/images/partner%20yoga-couple%20in%20squat.jpg

http://pregnancy.about.com/cs/laborbasics/a/squatting.htm

6. Keep moving during labor! Laying still in a bed and not allowing your body to move about between contractions can actually be detrimental to the labor process. Moving and doing what feels natural for you to do while laboring is the bed thing you can do to make sure you succeed and make it to the pushing phase. I know this is the reason why I stalled, I was laying in a bed and strapped to a monitor and IV so my body wasn’t able to progress naturally. I remember feeling the urge to move but was to scared to remove the monitor and get up. Not this time!

http://www.transitiontoparenthood.com/ttp/parented/pain/positions.htm

7. Drink lots of coconut water and/or another kind of electrolyte boosting and hydrating fluid while laboring. Your body will thank you for it!

8. Squat, squat, squat! Squatting now while pregnant will help you when you need to squat during labor. Prep those legs! 😉

9. Pelvic tilts- These are amazing. Not only do they prep your body for labor, but they relieve lower back ache! I literally was taught how to do them and within 3 reps I was back pain free! Lasted all night and when it sprouted up again I just did them again, and Poof! They were gone again 🙂 Yay for pain relief!

http://www.livestrong.com/article/262134-pelvic-tilt-exercises-during-pregnancy/

10.  A good Chiropractor could mean the difference between a long and painful labor or a fast and relatively pain free labor. I’m making sure I get a session in before February, that’s for sure!

 

And many more that I’m sure I’m forgetting right this moment. :p

River’s pregnancy really has been a learning experience for me and I can’t wait to tackle labor head on! Here’s to the last 12 weeks! Can’t wait to see you River ❤

The things I love about Pregnancy

There are so many posts out there with women complaining about pregnancy. And I seriously get it, I have easy pregnancies compared to most women and other women have a legitimate reason to be unhappy. I don’t get morning sickness so bad that I can’t keep anything down, and I really don’t have GH, so I can’t relate to those poor women. But there are some things I think we all can relate to when it comes to the GOOD about pregnancy. Here are a few that I personally love:

*Maternity clothes: they are literally like pj’s! Have any of you EVER been uncomfortable in  maternity pants? I mean seriously, there is always the last few weeks of pregnancy where nothing feels good, but those pants are super nice.

*The feeling of your baby moving within you. Yes, when they are super big and are literally  making your stomach move like there is an alien inside, it can sometimes be really weird. But otherwise, the feeling of your baby moving within is the biggest blessing and the most amazing feeling out there. I love feeling my little girl kick, it makes my heart happy.

* For those women with small breasts: the sudden increase in size. You suddenly go from a A cup to a C cup or even beyond that! Your suddenly getting attention that you normally didn’t and if you have a boyfriend or husband, they are SUPER happy about the change. LOL

* Amazingly soft hair. Now not all of us preggo ladies get this, but I did with Elenore. (not with River…) I was amazed with the softness, fullness and just overall amazing hair that I had while pregnant. My hair was great!

*The joy of looking at your baby and hearing its heartbeat for the first time on the ultrasound screen. You can’t imagine how much you instantly love that little blip on the screen. It may look like an alien or as my husband called River, “a star ship enterprise”, but you know what it is and you instantly fall in love with that little person inside of you. Than they let you hear the heartbeat. Words cannot describe the feelings you have when you hear that little and fast heartbeat. Everything becomes SO real to you than. You have a little person growing inside of you.

* Finding out the gender and the extreme joy of being able to call that little person inside of you by name. Each time with my children, I instantly wanted to cry when they told me what they were. I, myself, was blessed with two little girls and loved saying “Hello Elenore” and “Hello River”. My poor husband did cry and than instantly said “what am I going to do with TWO girls?!?!”

*The first cry from your child. The moment when you first hear and set eyes on your tiny bundle of joy. Nothing can describe what you feel when you meet them in person for the first time. Equal parts extreme joy, love and fear. You have to care for this little one now!

 

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