Hospital Bag – Pregnancy Blog Post!

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So, this post is sort of in honour of one of my best friends who is expecting her first baby next month! Yay!

One of the wonderful things about friends and sisters having had babies before you is that they give really good honest advice!  Having said that,  my friend waited until after I’d told her the details (and mean ALL the details) of childbirth before telling me she was pregnant…so she literally knows everything to expect now.

The other day we went through the absolute must-haves for a hospital bag and how to pack.  When I went into hospital, I was not properly prepared and I had stuff being collected from home each day!  I would definitely do it differently second time around.

So, I thought I’d share some of my tips on the blogosphere and help you pack your bags too!

First of all one bag for everything is a bad idea!  Rummaging through the one bag and pulling out things for you, and then things for baby, and then more things for you, gets messy!  Baby should have one bag and you should have another.

For baby, don’t feel like you’re packing too much.  I thought I was too, but Noel had to keep bringing things in to me!  Your own hospital will probably have their own list of what you should bring for baby, it’s better to have too much than too little!

For you:

1.  Lots of changes of clothes:  nighties are a must, choose night dresses over pjs!  Lots of cheap/disposable underoos!  You’ll probably be able to have showers and it will be nice to freshen up and change your clothes.  Don’t forget your going home clothes will probably be maternity wear too, so don’t pack your pre-pregnancy skinny jeans!

2.  Shower Shoes/Flip Flops: I found that the heat of the shower was massively therapeutic during contractions and lovely and refreshing after baby is born too.  Don’t assume you will be the only one using the shower though,  for your own comfort bring some flip flops with you!

3. Spray Bottle:  If you have an episiotomy or you tear, use salt and water in a spray bottle.  This was the single most effective technique for me during my recovery.  Keep a separate towel for this area too and just pat dry.

4.  Shower & Hygiene:  Essentials are shower wash, toothbrush & toothpaste, moisturiser and some lip balm!  Forget hair washing, shaving and make up…it’ll probably be the last thing on your mind!  Keep lanolin cream beside your bed and use it often, even if you don’t need to, your better off safe than sorry!

5.  Light Night Gown and Slippers:  The hospital will be warm, so nothing too heavy.  I brought an oversized cotton one with me, and I would have hated not having it with me – walking the halls/ showertime/ breastfeeding – very useful!

6.  Pillow:  You might feel silly carrying a pillow in with you, but bringing little comforts from home will really help you to relax and feel comfortable in the hospital.

7.  Snacks: This may only apply to breastfeeding mamas, but you will get hungry … a lot!!  It may not be a convenient time to ask for tea and toast (2am) so single serving packets of brown bread, crackers or biscuits and a flask of tea is a great idea!  Best not to be too naughty with your snacks as you’ll be feeding baby too, i.e. don’t live on chocolate and redbull!

8.  Entertainment: This is one that I didn’t plan beforehand.  I thought I’d be entertained by my baby, and I’d nap while he napped and it would all just be so wonderful….  But I didn’t sleep until I was home and babies sleep a lot!  I kept busy filling in the rest of my pregnancy journal and starting Devin’s baby record book.  Think magazines, books, phone, tablet … whatever, just keep yourself amused!

Follow these little tips you’ll be well prepared…Happy packing!

Below:  The receipt from my labour inducing curry that I mentioned in my last post!

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D xoxo

Signs of Labour – My Pregnancy Story Part III

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I was suffering from Braxton Hick’s in the final stages of pregnancy (they’re sort of practice contractions) and had been admitted to the labour ward during an antenatal class in week 36!  I was so sure he wasn’t coming, but the (very lovely) midwives insisted!  I eventually had to beg to be discharged, I had to call work that I wouldn’t be back in that day and I wasn’t able to miss the next day too!

So as you can imagine by week 37 I was so ready to meet my baby and I felt like I was going to pop any second!  But I finished up in work that week and nothing, and nothing the next week either!  Until this point I had thought he would either be early or on time, the thought of being him being overdue just never occurred to me!

My EDD came around, 10th of October and nothing happened.  I went to see my sister and my baby nephew with Noel.  We talked about all the different ways to help induce labour, and how I’d tried pretty much everything!  On our way home that evening, I decided I wanted Indian food.  (Try eating a hot curry).  So we  stopped into an Indian restaurant and picked up what turned out to be one of the yummiest meals I’ve ever had!  We ate it in our living room and then I lay down on my mattress (which had become a permanent fixture in the room as sitting was so uncomfortable!) We played Xbox for a while and then around 9pm I had to stop, I couldn’t concetrate at all.  I was getting terrible crampy pains that I thought was indigestion of some sort!  Noel was convinced it was the labour beginning but I was sure it wasn’t.

After much convincing from Noel I started using a contractions App, the pains were coming and going but they weren’t regular.  I still wasn’t convinced!

It was getting late so I pretty much forced Noel to go to bed as he was in work the next morning.  We went in to bed together,  but after 10 minutes of lying down I had to get up again.  Poor Noel was sound asleep, so  I went out to the living room and heated up my microwave heat pack and got out the TENS machine and continued using the App.  I tried to watch some TV and by 3am I was on all fours and in a lot of pain!

I went into Noel and turned on the light, I told him we had to go to the hospital!  We got in the car, we needed to get petrol, we needed an ATM too.  There were no petrol stations open, when he found a petrol station they wouldn’t give him change for the parking meter, and we seemed to hit every red light along the way!  It was truly comical, like something in a movie.

When we got to the hospital and I was examined I was only 1cm dilated!   1cm!  They offered me pain relief, but I didn’t take anything at that point it was definitely tolerable and I could only imagine how much worse it was going to get!

I walked the corridors with Noel (walking helps baby come) and he talked me through every contraction.  I’m getting teary eyed as I type this because he was just so amazing, he held me telling me to keep my eyes open, to focus on him and breathe through it.  It was around 10am when I finally gave in and took the pethedine.  I’m glad I did, it relaxes you and helps you to cope with the pain.  I tried not to talk because I felt as high as a kite!  It wore off pretty quickly and I didn’t take it again.  After that I had a show, and I started to feel shaky.

It was around 12 noon when I had another examination, during the examination my waters broke.  And I cried!  Noel helped me change my clothes, he told me not to look at the bed where I had been lying (so I wouldn’t get a fright) and then he and a nurse helped me to the labour ward.

I was still only 1cm at this point and the pain was much worse.  After the waters had gone the contractions were a lot more intense.   The gas and air was not working for me, it was upsetting me because my head wasn’t clear and I was finding it difficult to know what was going on.  At about 2pm, I asked for the epidural.  They had hoped that I would relax and dilate but it still wasn’t happening and baby was distressed.  There was a trace attached to his head and his heart beat kept stopping.  We had two midwives and a doctor in with us.  Eventually they administered oxytocin to help get me to dilate.  I went from 1 to 10cm in 40 minutes.  But baby was much more distressed now.  I had no idea what was going on, they got Noel to remove my nail polish to prepare for an emergency c section.  I kept pushing and suddenly they were telling me to stop pushing and pant.

Seeing Devin come out was, for both of us, one of the scariest moments ever.  He wasn’t moving, he was blue and he was completely limp.  They took him away to work on him in the corner of the room and Noel just held onto me.  I kept asking what was happening, I could see the worry in Noel’s face. Then, suddenly we could hear his cry, it was the only sound in the world we wanted to hear at the moment!  They brought him over to us and left the room, our little family was finally together.  Our lives were changed forever, in such a wonderful way!

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You can read part I of this post here

And Part II here !!

My Pregnancy Story Part II

My pregnancy was a wonderful experience. Don’t get me wrong now, I had morning sickness throughout, and at 37 weeks I was saying “come out already”, but as a whole, I loved it!  It’s not easy though, and I had actually forgotten that until I was reading through my pregnancy journal last night!
First Trimester

Excerpt from Week 8: “I’m sick, then hungry, sick, then hungry…then sick..oh and I’m tired ALL THE TIME” (LOL! Wow). “Noel looks after me so well, he makes me tea and toast and drives me to work.”

Yes, driving myself made me car sick.  I actually forgot about this, but it’s true – I had to carry sick bags!  As for the tea and toast – I had a mad aversion to dairy – if I saw it, I’d be sick!  So, I could drink tea with milk but only if someone else poured the milk! RIDICULOUS

Cravings: “It’s not so much what I’m craving, as much as what’s not making me throw up!!” I went through phases where I could only eat one thing as it had been tried and tested and didn’t result in the ole barf-a-rooneys!  I was extremely lucky too – McDonalds, Pizza and basically anything bad for you made me so sick!  (Not anymore though!! Ha ha ha!)

 

Second Trimester:

This is the time when you get to see your baby on a scan for the first time, and in most cases find out the sex of the baby.
Excerpt from Week 21: “How did I feel when I saw the scan? Amazing. My heart was beating so fast!  We saw every perfect bit of you.  We found out you were a boy…that made no difference except that we could call you “him”. I love you.

Around this time I also did some major nesting.  I started cleaning the apartment from top to toe.  I was kind of ridiculous actually telling myself “he could touch that when he’s crawling” – incidentally he’s three months old now and we’re moving, so crawling in this apartment was definitely not something to worry about!

I was FULL of energy and I loved the smell of cleaning products – sounds dangerous but I can assure you it wasn’t!  However my major craving began at this time too – sponges.  Yes, you read correctly.  Not just any sponge though, the type with the rough exfoliating bit.  I chewed them but I didn’t eat them, but the two texture feel was a necessity.

I was sick throughout the pregnancy and my second trimester saw the puke in the car incident, my amazing sister saved the day though.  She and her hubby own a car detailing business (very high end and no way could I afford them) but they sent a crew out to me at work to clean up my mess!

Third Trimester:

During week 28 I was an absolute emotional wreck!  Noel was taken into hospital with a ruptured appendix.  I remember looking at him and genuinely thinking he looked like he was dying, that sounds dramatic but the only appendix stories I’ve ever heard have been disastrous!  He was fine in the end though!

Excerpt from Week 28:  “you’re moving so so much…I think you know something is wrong”

He sort of suddenly started moving a lot when Noel was in the hospital!  It was actually weirdly comforting, it made me feel like I wasn’t alone – incredible baby bonding that week.

Around week 34 is when the real restlessness began! I was standing on chairs cleaning cupboards, taking down curtains, washing windows etc. I was still working too – which my doctor suggested/implied I shouldn’t have been as I’m on my feet all day in work!  There was no way I was stopping early – I’d go crazy at home waiting for him! 
 Labour (the short and sweet edit):Labour began while I was playing Call of Duty!  (Note have not played since having him – no time for that!! ) I wasn’t really sure what it was but it was sore enough to stop playing Xbox!  6 hours later I decided I should go to hospital.  Noel drove me in and 12 hours later I had my gorgeous baby boy!If anyone actually wants to hear the labour story I can write a post about it, but I think it’s one of those things people don’t like hearing about!

If there’s anything you’d like to share please comment below!

 

Read Part I of this post here

and Part III here

Miracle Baby – My Pregnancy Story

When I was younger I was diagnosed with a tumour. When it was diagnosed, I thought it was great as I had long been suffering from headaches and other symptoms including major hormone imbalances that mirrored signs of depression.  What I didn’t know, until I was sat with my consultant on my second or third visit, was that infertility was also a side effect of the tumour.

Now, I was in no way ready for children, in fact I would go as far as saying I never thought about having kids before that. But when you’re told that you cannot have children, suddenly everything changes.  I sat in my car and cried and cried – I felt like a failure! Choosing not to have children, and not being ABLE to have children are two entirely different things!

Life went on and I learned to accept my fate.  Before I met Noel it was pretty easy, as I hadn’t met anyone I had any desire to have a baby with!  But when I met Noel I knew he was different.  We got engaged in Vegas, we travelled to the other side of the world together, we were faced with a lot of tough situations and we didn’t break.

When we spoke about our future and the possibility of children it was more of a fantasy than anything else.  The way people talk about winning the lotto!

So when we actually got pregnant it was a complete shock!  The most amazingly wonderful shock of my life! I peed on several sticks and each time we were giddy over it, bu we didn’t really believe it until the doctor confirmed it for us.

“How did you get pregnant?” She had said.  (The usual way incase you wondered) “It’s a little miracle baby”

We were over the moon.  And so, we began planning for our next big adventure together!

Read Part II of this post here

and Part III here