well, by way of introduction, i'm katherine and dh is michael. we both turned 30 earlier this summer (i'm 26 days older, a fact he rarely lets me forget ). we have one son, judah, who is 21 months. he's not super verbal yet, so it's hard to know how much he understand, though we talk about the baby a lot. he isn't going to know what hit him when we actually keep the baby
i really can't believe it's already 36 weeks. in some respects, this pregnancy has really flown by. we want our children to be close in age, and michael really wanted me to get pregnant about four months after judah was born. fortunately, i was breastfeeding and my body didn't allow for that possibility but, i started running again just over a year ago and was finally able to lose all the baby weight from judah, so i decided i was ready to have another.
after a couple months of poor timing (michael was out of town when i ovulated, etc), we got pregnant again, much quicker than with judah. the funny thing is that i ran a marathon (26.2 miles) when i was about three weeks along, but didn't have a clue obviously. all of my friends were completely amazed, but it was something i'd trained months for, and really, how many women have signs or symptoms when they're only three weeks?
we found out i was pregnant a few days before christmas, so we were able to tell all our family in person, which was really fun (we didn't get to do that with judah). my family was astonished, but my sister-in-law made up for their shock when she cried tears of joy. it was fun to be with them all while i was still feeling really great.
overall, this pregnancy has been really easy. i had some minor m/s for about six weeks, but nothing horrific, mostly just feeling "car sick" for most of the day. i've been really tired, but attribute that to chasing a toddler (and, an escape mechanism for cleaning... ) other than that, it's been easy-breezy.
we're planning to birth at a free-standing birth center about 15 minutes from our home, the same place judah was born. its staffed by two CNMs and a handful of clinical staff/birth attendants and i'm really glad we have this option again. judah's birth was so amazing, and the care the staff gave so great, that we feel blessed to be in this situation again. though i'm really intrigued by homebirths, at this point in our lives, i can't imagine giving birth at our home (we live in a two bedroom apartment) and this old victorian home is in some ways much more comfortable -- and spacious and i won't be tripping over any of judah's trucks
i stumbled back into pregnancy.org and this forum when i began to realize that i needed to remember the positive aspects of NCB over the potential pain (i was beginning to feel really anxious). y'all have encouraged me as you've told your stories and supported each other. i'm thankful to have such strong ladies to walk with me in this birth! so, thanks!
What a great intro!!! Welcome to your lodge!! I can't wait to meet your LO and read your birth story experience!!!!
Welcome to your lodge! Sounds like you have an amazing birthing center.
Was Judah born near his EDD or did he decide to make a late arrival?
i actually had a pretty standard, by-the-books labor, it just wasn't as long as the average first-time mom. here's his birth story, though it's kind of long (i tried to edit it down for y'all):
Sunday, October 21, Michael and I were watching the Ken Burns WWII special on PBS. As I laid on the love seat, I realized that every ten minutes or so, my tummy was tightening, like my bicep would when I make a fist. It would get really hard for about 45 seconds. I paid attention to the clock for about an hour and then told Michael about my discovery. [I hadn't had ANY bh contractions until this point.] We timed them for another hour as we watch the documentary and then proceeded to pack all of our bags for the birth center (which we had yet to do). We finally made it to bed around 1am. I slept really well.
On Monday when I woke up around 7:30, I was still feeling these “tightenings” every ten minutes or so. By the next day, since things weren’t progressing super quickly (or even at all necessarily), Michael went to class. I had my weekly appointment with midwife CB and was planning to pick Michael up from campus. During the morning, I noticed that the “discomfort” that went with the tightenings was starting to be more noticeable than the tightening itself. I don’t get bad period cramps, and these early contractions were by now more painful than menstrual cramps. I had three contractions on the way to meet Michael, a 15-20 minute drive.
Our appointment went great. For the first time, I had actually made progress, which really encouraged me even though I know it doesn’t mean much. I was 2 cm dilated and 80% effaced. As I was 40w 6d, mw CB offered to sweep my membranes and get things moving. At this point, I was pretty sure I was going to start active labor that day (though I didn’t say that because I was afraid of being wrong) and we declined. We were still content, we said, to wait it out and see what happened.
Michael and I left our appointment, sold his car, went to the grocery and headed home. I took a bath, we both took naps, and when I woke up around 4:30, I was definitely approaching active labor. I began to realize that these contractions were about five minutes apart and 30 second long. And, they were really uncomfortable. By dinner time, the contractions were 3-5 minutes and 40-50 seconds.
Around 6pm, I called CB. She told me to take a hot bath, continue timing the contractions and call her in 45 minutes. Even relaxing in the bath, I could tell my contractions were lengthening. Michael sat on the floor and timed them for me. We called CB, who thought it’d be good to check me, and we agreed to meet at the birth center at 8pm. Everything felt so surreal. I could hardly believe that we were actually approaching the birth of our son!
As Michael scurried to get everything together, I rocked on the birth ball. The contractions were requiring a lot of focus during them, but I was talkative and able to help him between them. I had several contractions on the way to the birth center and one big one as we were walking up the steps. CB watched from the doorway and I remember her saying, “Well, that’s a good sign!” We went upstairs where she checked me – 4cms and 100% effaced! Active labor for sure.
I labored I in the tub for awhile, maybe an hour. Michael sat on the floor and talked to me. I was really surprised at how easily I could engage between contractions. I really expected to be much more “in the zone” throughout the entire labor.
After awhile in the tub, I decided I wanted to get out. It wasn’t yet 10pm. CB checked me again – 6cm. By 11pm, I was 7cm and my bag of waters was bulging. CB felt it would be a good idea to go ahead and break my water. Michael and I agreed. I remember the gush and thinking it wasn’t as much as I’d expected. They encouraged me to walk around the room a few times. I made it twice when I decided I needed to squat more. I hated squatting, but knew my body needed to do it.
Around this point, I was no longer able to “synthesize” what was happening between contractions. I quickly felt the urge to push which CB and B encouraged me to do -- ultimately, I pushed for about 1.5 hours.
The rest happened so fast. He started to crown and they showed me a mirror, though at that point I really didn’t care about what was happening, I was just ready to be done. From crowning to being on my chest was about five minutes. Before I knew it, I had a whimpering baby boy on my chest. It was 12:46am.
Lovely birth story! That is great that you were able to do so well with your first baby.
Ah, welcome! I'm sorry I'm so late in the game here. Your last birth sounds like a dream, let's just hope #2 isn't too much faster