I am five minutes into being clean--no spit up, pee or poop. I am trying not to nap during Eleanor's naps because I feel like there is just so much to do that I can't get to during the day. Plus, we are sleeping in very late, so I really am getting plenty of sleep. Just wanted to stop in and share somethings I am loving right now.
1. I am brewing a cup of coffee and mixing it with some of this for an afternoon pick-me-up to help me get through the rest of the day. There is a McDonalds so close, and I was stopping by there a couple times a week to get their Hazelnut Iced Coffee. That habit had to stop. Money wise not a smart decision; this is so much cheaper!
It is like a straight-jacket for the babe. She almost always goes right to sleep. It is a must have!
3. Free Lactation Consultant services at the local hospital and feeling so supported by other mommies. No judgment here! For info click here.
4. I finally ordered my Doterra Essential Oils. I feel like I am getting more and more crunchy as time goes by. Natural birth, cloth diapers, essential oils. By product of Denton, I suppose. I am not an expert with these at all, but I have had them highly recommended by two friends. Check them out here if you are curious. I will keep you updated on my journey with those once I get them. Excited!
5. Taking on more responsibility at home. My husband takes such good, good care of me. He always has, but now that I am home for the time-being, until the end of maternity leave and then for good after this school year, I want to take some of the load off of his shoulders. Two things that I am really proud of my progress with is laundry and dishwasher. Before baby, laundry consisted of washing a bunch of loads throughout the week, but never folding them and putting them away. I have been doing laundry almost every other day so that the amounts are more manageable. With the dishwasher, I have been trying to make sure that it is either dirty or empty. We were the worst about collecting dishes in the sink to "soak." Can I get an "AMEN"?
For most of my life I probably have had this irrational fear of child-birth. And with good reason, every tv show or movie portrays it as a woman screaming her head off for hours on end with no break until this ginormous needle gets plunged into your spine. For someone who strongly dislikes needles, the thought of all of that was a bit too much for me to handle. Plus it doesn't help that a lot of people who have given birth feel like it is their rite of passage to scare the crap out of future first time mommies. " Well, I had to go through it and now that I am on the other side, I am going to tell everyone how horrible the process was."
First, I had to combat my fear.
This acronym was like an epiphany for me. It helped me with my needle fear. I think for the longest time I thought that the nurses stuck the entire length of the needle into my arm, like they do on tv when someone runs up from behind and stabs a syringe in someone's neck to sedate them or like an epi pen.
So, in regard to childbirth, education of what really was happening was key. At first, I just wanted to be blissfully in the dark, but as my pregnancy progressed, the more I knew, the more confident I felt in my abilities to birth.
My doula gave me the book Prepared Childbirth-The Family Way. It is really informative even if you are not planning to birth all-naturally. One of the biggest things that stuck out to me from that book was another acronym.
For me, realizing that each contraction was my body opening up more and more for my daughter's arrival really helped me embrace the contraction instead of gritting my teeth and fighting through it. I remember several contractions that I would say "open" in a low moan to remind myself that that is what I was doing.
The "A" and the "N" go together for me. Knowing that I would experience pain and knowing that it was normal helped me not panic and think that something was going wrong.
I clung to the truth of "I"! Even when my contractions were at their worst, I knew there was a break coming soon. Instead of looking at labor as a whole, I looked at each contraction. I just have to make it through this contraction, and then I get a break.
In addition to this book, I also watched several birth videos. My husband and I watched the Business of Being Born as homework for our birthing class. Even though our hands were in front of our faces for some of the video, we both admitted that it wasn't as bad as we had thought. We also watched some clips in our classes. Although I was probably stunned at first, I am glad I watched because I knew what was going to happen. In labor, I could feel when the end was near, I didn't need someone to tell me they could see her head. I knew what to expect, and that helped me.
As far as actual pain-coping strategies, I moaned through each contraction. My goal was to keep my moan as low as possible. Once I started getting high pitched or screaming, I knew I was not in control of the contraction, and I would refocus and try to make my moan even lower.
Lots of love to all, regardless of how you choose to birth,