Friday, February 21, 2014

I am looking forward to.....

Baby Wearing

I fell in love with baby wearing while traveling overseas. Every culture had unique and beautiful ways to carry their children. It transformed my pre-existing vision of motherhood.  I purchased a beautiful hand woven cloth in Guatemala called a tzute, which I now use as a rebozo during births, and a few kanga in Tanzania, Africa.

When I became pregnant, a few short months after returning home from circumnavigating the globe, I started researching baby wearing in north America. I quickly purchased a few different carriers, namely the Beco, the Baby Hawk and the Mya Wrap. I used and LOVED all of them. Unfortunately the Beco carrier was accidently left on the top of a mountain in Prince George so I will be looking for a replacement for that one.  I recently discovered a great resource in my community called the Mid-Island Babywearers who have an incredible lending library of carriers for new moms to try and rent for a small fee.

Amelia and I at the top of a mountain in Norway.

In the field behind my parents house.

On the rope swing at Esperanza.

With the Mya Wrap in the Chilcotin

Having another home birth

I know notion of a home birth seems absurd to most people, but I can assure that it is pretty great! I had my eldest at home surrounding by two midwives, a birth doula and my mom and sister. When I became pregnant with my second child I longed to have a similar birthing environment, but our family had been posted to a remote community in the Chilcotin where midwifery was not available. Needless to say, my only option was to have a traditional doctor and deliver in a hospital. And I did, although my doctor left tire marks in the parking lot in an attempt to deliver my baby. Typically pregnant women stay at hotel in town when they are close to their due date, especially when they live 115km from the closest hospital, as was the case with our family. I wasn't keen on that idea and waited until the last possible moment before telling my hubby it was "time to go". When we arrived in town we connected with our birth doula, killed some time at Starbucks, did some grocery shopping and then headed to the park. We had only been there about fifteen minutes when I looked at my doula and told her we needed to go the hospital. She seemed quite surprised, and reminded me that I didn't want to go too early. Something instinctual told me I needed someplace warm and safe. Walking around at a park in the snow no longer seemed appealing. Ten minutes later we were greeted in the labor and deliver ward by a lone nurse with a clipboard. She  asked me to give her a pee sample and handed me a hospital gown so that she could preform a cervical check. My contractions were so stacked up against each other at this point that I couldn't answer any of her questions let alone undress myself. I ignored the pee cup and leaned on the windowsill while waiting for a break between contractions to undress. Seconds later I felt my water break with a gigantic gush and my body immediately starting pushing. It was the most powerful, involuntary thing I have ever experienced in my life. All I could say through gritted teeth was "I'm pushing"! Remember that hospital gown? Yeah, it was still laying on the bed, and I was still wearing my jeans and running shoes. The nurse holding the clipboard froze for a few second and then started hollering for backup. The room filled with nurses and all I remember is that I started trying to peel off my pants while the nurses shuffled me over to the delivery bed. I only remember pushing twice before I held my daughter in my arms. It was pretty intense, and it makes me laugh when I think out it. I wish that I had video footage, because it would have been riot to watch.

Hopefully, if all goes well and I am able to deliver this baby at home it will look something more like this. ( A link to my first home birth) 

Sweet baby Claire at a week old.


Some babies nurse heartily within minutes of being born, while others, take weeks to properly latch. So far, my children have most certainly fallen into the second category. I struggle and weep and grind my teeth. My nipples crack and bleed and my children howl pitifully. I spend hours hand expressing milk which my husband usually spoon feeds the baby while I catch a few winks of sleep.....  Now you are asking yourself, why is she looking forward to breastfeeding again?????? Well, because once baby and I figure it out, (it is a teamwork thing by the way), it is AWESOME!   All the nutritional benefits aside, there is nothing that compares to having a sweet little face nuzzled up against your skin the quiet of the night. I get all clucky get thinking about it.

Paternity Leave

Yes, my hubby will be taking paternity leave this time around and I am giddy at the thought of it. It might seem excessive, but I am really looking forward to having quality time as a family, not to mention help with our older children. When Amelia was born, Nathaniel returned to work after only thee days. Four months later, he moved to Regina for six months.  Amelia was nine months old when he returned. When our second child arrived, Nathaniel was only able to stay home for  two days  and had to work insane hours in the weeks and months following. One of the "perks" of working in small community. Now that we live in a city with a large detachment, he is able to take paternity leave without any problems. Hurray!!!!

Baby/Mom Groups

When Amelia was small I enjoyed taking her to Mother Goose, breastfeeding drop-in groups and other mom/babe functions. Living in an isolated community made such activities impossible, although we enjoyed attending the Strongstart program that was available once at week at the local school. I am looking forward to participating in all those groups again, especially since my eldest will be in kindergarten and my hubby will be home to take care of our soon to be middle child.


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A new kind of marathon

I went for a run today. It was tough!
 As I slogged along, the "pregnancy weight" I have acquired over the past fourteen weeks, cursed me.
I didn't feel much like the marathon finisher I was a few short months ago, more like a pregnant women who just emerged from the haze of the first trimester.
Oh the joys of being "with child".
I  laugh at myself when I remember how I swore that this pregnancy was going to be my healthiest yet. So far it has been anything but. I am still eating green beans and boiled eggs for breakfast and I just polished off  a plate piled with quinoa, chicken, raw veggies and yam at dinner this evening.... but I would eat chips ALL DAY LONG if I could.... and pickles. Eating makes me happy, especially since my exhaustion has deprived me of exercising. Didn't I commute to work on my road bike until I was five months pregnant with Amelia? I am certain that I ran  
and did boot camp right up until the day I gave birth to Claire. 
Seriously, this pregnancy feels different. I am empathizing women that waddle, that don't want to move, that want to sleep ALL DAY.
 I miss the burn of a good workout. I miss feeling capable. I miss having my bras fit.

I want to eat even when I am full. Has that ever happened to you before?
It's like that feeling you get after eating a full  thanksgiving dinner but you still want a hefty slice of pumpkin cheesecake. You are bursting and yet you want to eat more. It's terrible!

Thankfully, I don't have any desire for fast food or even sweets for that matter. I want savory dishes.... fish tacos, pad Thai, my husband's kale and sausage spaghetti sauce, toasted sandwiches filled with avocado, bacon, cheese, and a fried eggs.
I am hungry now.
Thankfully, I have a membership at an amazing women's gym in town and I love their butt kicking classes. Now that I am in my second trimester I think I will have the energy to start going again. I signed up at the gym before I was pregnant because I knew that I would need someplace to go once the weather turned. I didn't expect my body to turn on me as well.
So, although my run was tough, it felt good to be outside in the sun,
listening to all the music that carried me through marathon training earlier this year. I am involved in a different kind of marathon now. I am no longer putting in three plus hour runs or doing hill repeats, but I am working towards something.
A child is being knitted together  in the darkness of my womb. I am creating fingernails and hair follicles, organs and complex brain matter. It's crazy! I have done this twice before, and yet it still amazes me.
Not only am I creating another child, I am creating a person who will not only fill my heart with love, but also impact the world in powerful ways. My heavenly father, the one that created me, has entrusted me with another eternal life. It is mind blowing, sobering, and inspiring. It makes the sleepless nights, frequent urination, childbirth and earth shattering post partum period worthwhile.
Hopefully I have what it takes to raise three children. *Huge sigh*
My heart is that they will be compassionate, curious, loving, servant-hearted, creative and love Jesus with all their hearts.
Oh ..... and that I will survive with my sanity intact.