35 Weeks

I am now 35+1 weeks pregnant. I’m not really sure where the time has gone, it’s whizzing past, and I could quite possibly have my baby as in little as 2 weeks. This terrifies me more than a little bit!

I had my 34 week midwife appointment last week and all was well. I had bloods taken for thyroxine levels and full blood count (they like to check your iron levels towards the end if you are having a home birth). My midwife is booked in to come and see my on July 10th to deliver my homebirth pack, and I will get a call next week from Water Baby Birthing Pool Hire to confirm delivery of my chosen pool.

I’m taking Raspberry Leaf tablets in earnest and have started taking one Oil of Evening Primrose tablet in the morning, which I will increase at 37 weeks.

So how am I feeling at 35 weeks?

Huge (I think the words hubby used were along the lines of “freaking enormous”). Uncomfortable. Fed up of heartburn. Tired. I keep getting cramp when I’m in bed, and I’ve come down with a horrible cough, that along with loo trips in the middle of the night mean I’m not sleeping much.

Jake is getting excited. He’s telling the teachers what we are having and what name we are toying with. I say toying with. I mean name that Neil and Jake have chosen and that I’m not completely sold on yet.

I have my final growth scan next week, and all being well I should be completely discharged from the consultant which will be fantastic.

So it’s all go at the moment.

I shall leave you with a bump picture taken on Thursday (34+3) on our 8th Wedding Anniversary.

Image

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Home birth – 3rd Time Lucky?

I’ve always wanted a home birth. It was planned with Jake. We had the appointment for the midwife to come and deliver the magic box at 37 weeks, but I had a bleed at 35, and so the doctors decided that they didn’t want me to go overdue just in case my placenta was failing, and I was to be induced. With Zack, I didn’t even get as far as suggesting it. My consultant (I was consultant led due to having my thyroid removed) needed convincing about me using the Birth Centre instead of the Delivery Suite, but when I had *that* scare, even Birth Centre was off, and Delivery Suite it was.

I know now, after spending a LOT of time researching things, that actually, I could have still had a home birth if I wanted to. They aren’t allowed to say no, but it would be against medical advice, and a Supervisor of Midwives would come and explain the risks to you.

Ultimately, they have a duty of care to attend you. The Nursing and Midwifery Council says ‘Should a conflict arise between service provision and a woman’s choice for place of birth, a midwife has a duty of care to attend her… Withdrawal of a home birth service is no less significant to women than withdrawal of services for a hospital birth.’

And so, this time, pregnancy number 3, and once again I have brought up the subject of home birth. I never started this pregnancy wanting a home birth particularly. To be completely honest, I thought it was beyond the realms of possibility being consultant led. But then she said she would discharge me back to midwife led care at 36 weeks providing my second growth scan was fine, and I had no reason to believe it wouldn’t be, seeing as Zack’s birth weight was a healthy 7lb 4oz. So I started the research, and then I chatted to Neil, and I we decided that we would give it a go this time, so I joined some home birth groups on Facebook, and I reserved a birthing pool. I’ve chatted to my midwife, who is fully on board, although she suggests the the SOM will still want to talk to me about risks as I’m not *normal* due to my thyroid issue, but doesn’t see it as being a problem.

I should stress the point here – I AM NOT ANTI HOSPITAL BIRTH. I’ve had two healthy babies delivered in hospital, with two very different labours, and I am grateful for that. I am however, pro home birth.

Yes, I know there are *risks*. But don’t we take risks every day? Every time we cross the road, we risk getting run over. Every time we get in the car, we risk having a crash. We go to a shopping centre, we risk a bomb going off, etc etc blah blah. But you  know what? Most of the time, we are okay. If I need to transfer to hospital for any reason, we are literally a five minute drive away. It would be quicker to get Neil to put me in the car and drive there than to wait for an ambulance.

I have carefully thought about it, weighed up the pros and cons and decided that this time, home birth is the better option for me, for my family, and it’s going to take a lot for me to be convinced otherwise.

 

The One With the Growth Scan

Now that I am in the last trimester, the appointments are being stepped up a notch. I had my GTT at 28 weeks, and thankfully, if not unsurprisingly the results were fine. I’ve had to have one in all my pregnancies due to the fact my mum has Type II Diabetes. It’s a simple enough test to do, just very boring as it involves lots of sitting around on uncomfortable chairs.

I have really been struggling the last few weeks. The tiredness has reached a whole new level, and I found myself needing a quick power nap even after a task as simple as doing the school run. Not really ideal as I still have Zack to look after. I wasn’t sure if it was just third tri lethargy or if my thyroxine dose needed increasing. Luckily I had an appointment with my consultant and for a growth scan last week.

With Jake, I didn’t need growth scans as I was “healthy” and had no medical ailments. Then with Zack, because I’d had my thyroid removed, I had growth scans every four weeks from 20 weeks. This time I’m only having two growth scans, one at 30, and one at 36 weeks. I’m not sure if this is because everything was fine with Zack, or if it’s because I’m at a different hospital with a different consultant, either way, less is more as far as I’m concerned because I’m planning on a homebirth this time.

Neil couldn’t come with me to the hospital last week as he’s manic at work, so my mother-in-law came with me as moral support. I’m sure I would have been fine on my own, but I always like someone with me to talk things over with afterwards.

First up was the scan. They had to check the placenta this time around as as the last scan it was low lying. Thankfully this time, the placenta had moved out of the way, which I was really pleased about, as I don’t want anything to stand in the way of the home birth.

We had a 4D scan at 27 weeks and that showed that baby was head down. Now, baby is lying oblique. I’m not too worried about this just yet, I have another scan at 36 weeks, and am fairly certain s/he will have moved again by then, but just in case, I’ve had a look at Spinning Babies to find some exercises that might help.

As regards growth. Well, baby is bang on target, and estimated weight is currently 1627g (approx 3lb 9oz) and is measuring just below the 50th centile. Although, I know growth scans are to be taken with a pinch of salt. According to previous growth scans, Zack was going to be 9lb + whereas in reality, he was 7lb 4oz!

growth chart growth scan

Then it was through to the consultant. Blood pressure etc was all fine. I explained how tired I had been feeling, so they repeated my thyroid function blood test. I assumed that I would need my dose increasing, so agreed to call my GP in a few days for the results. I didn’t get that far as the consultant called me on Friday and said that she’d looked at my results and thought I was taking too much so has in fact reduced my dose. After a quick nose on Dr Google, I found that the symptoms of too much thyroxine are very similar to the symptoms of not enough, so I’m hoping to start feeling better in the next week or so.

I have a midwife appointment this week, then won’t be seen until 34 weeks, at which point I will be on fortnightly checks.

It’s all starting to get a bit real!

29+4

So, somehow I have gone past 29 weeks and am into my third trimester. We have a girls name decided, and we are yet to decide on a boys name, Neil and Jake vs me, it would seem!

This pregnancy feels different to my pregnancies with Jake and Zack. With Jake and Zack, I was elated, excited. This time, I’m waiting for those feelings to kick in.

It’s not that I’m not happy. It’s just that I’m not quite where I was. And I feel awful about it.

It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster.

We weren’t planning a third, so it was a bit of a shock. Then I was convinced I was going to have another chemical pregnancy, as I’d had before Jake and before Zack. I was sure that was just how my body works. I had early blood tests which showed my HCG levels had more that doubled in a 48 hour period, and we had a scan at around 7 weeks that showed a strong heartbeat.

At 10 weeks, I had a small bleed and some cramping, so had another scan which showed that everything was still fine. The 12 week scan went absolutely fine. We then announced our pregnancy, and had some negative reaction. Heaven forbid we have a third child!

We chose to have a private gender scan at 16 weeks and found out what we were having, but at 20 weeks, found out we were having something else. So we had started to bond with what we thought we were having, and then had to bond with the other.

When I was 23 weeks, my Dad got rushed into hospital with heart trouble, and got a diagnosis of Unstable Angina and spent a few days in CCU. When I was 24 weeks, Dad went back into hospital, spent some more time in CCU and had an angioplasty. When I was 25 weeks, Dad went back into hospital and spent yet more time in CCU.

Also, when I was 25 weeks, Mum failed her memory test at the GP and is being referred to the hospital, and will have some more tests done. I strongly suspect she will end up with some kind of dementia diagnosis.

To add to that, we have been going through some social worker assessments, not for us, but for my brother with learning difficulties to try and get him some extra support, as the support he was getting has now gone away due to lack of funding. Thank you Mr Cameron. The first assessment said he wasn’t eligible, and was factually incorrect, so we put a complaint in, and had to start the process again. We’ve just been through the second assessment, and are waiting for the outcome, although I feel it will be a lot more positive than the last one. It helped that this social worker was older than 12.

So with all of this going on, I’ve not had much of a chance to get ready for this baby. And I think that’s what I need to do. Once the baby clothes come out, the cot gets assembled, my growths scans are ok, I think I will start to feel excited about meeting the new member of our family. I know that once s/he is in my arms, I will fall completely in love.

 

 

Under Pressure

When I was pregnant with Zack, before we had our gender scan, I was hoping for a girl. I thought one of each would be lovely.

It’s not that I was disappointed when I found out he was a boy, disappointed isn’t the right word, I’m not sure what is. To be truthful, I was just grateful to be carrying a healthy baby after all of the health crap I’d been through.

This time round, I can honestly say I don’t mind what we have. I have two utterly gorgeous (albeit sometimes frustrating) boys, so why would I be upset if I had another one?

If we have another boy, it means that bedroom sharing in the future won’t be as much of an issue, as the two that get on best share, as opposed to having to share just because. It means we pretty much have everything we need.

If we have a girl, it means I get to go shopping for girly things, which I will be equally as happy with. As long as they are healthy, I don’t mind.

I wish I could say everyone felt the same as me. Certain people have made it abundantly clear that a boy would be a disappointment and a girl is necessary to fulfil their pretty dress buying needs.

Jake has requested a little sister, that he doesn’t want another brother.

I feel under an immense amount of pressure to produce a female, and I don’t like it.

I can’t choose. In fact, the gender selection isn’t even anything to do with me, that’s all down to Neil.

So I’ve made a decision.

And that decision is, we are keeping it a surprise. That’s not to say we aren’t finding out, it just means that if we do, as far as possible we won’t be revealing what we are having until s/he is here.

And I know some people with disagree with that. Will say that we are being awkward, maybe even selfish.

I don’t care.

I can’t win.

If I say it’s a boy, I will get comments such as “Oh, that’s a shame” “A girl would have been nice” “Are you disappointed?” Cue people being defriended and blocked.

If I say it’s a girl I will get “Oh how lovely, I bet you are so pleased it’s not another boy.”

Would anyone dare say to me when I’m holding a baby in my arms: “Yeah he’s ok I suppose, shame he’s not a girl though.” NO! Of course not.

So I ask of you: Don’t try and pressure me or trick me into telling you. It will only lead to me getting annoyed and us falling out.

If we change our minds and choose to find out and/or reveal, then we shall, but the decision shall remain ours and I won’t be bullied into anything else.

The Mummy Tag – Meme

I was tagged by Jaime at The Oliver’s Madhouse to answer some mummy questions.

Here are my answers:

1. Are you a Stay at Home Mum, or a Working Mum?

A bit of both. I was made redundant whilst on maternity leave with Jake, although I wasn’t planning on going back there anyway, I hated it. I started an access to higher education course when Jake was a few months old, but unfortunately I had to pull out as I got my cancer diagnosis, so all my energy needed to go on fighting it.

Then we had Zack. When he was one, I started temping, and then got a part time job at a dental practice, which I have been at for 6 months now. It works well for us. I work mornings with Wednesdays off, so I am always around for the school pickup.

2. Would you have it any other way?
No, I don’t think so. When the kiddies are at school full time, I would probably consider full time work again, or 4 days a week or something.

3. Do you co-sleep?
No, is the short answer. When Jake was younger, he used to love snuggles in bed, in fact he still does now. On a weekend he often comes into bed with us for morning cuddles. Zack, on the other hand, hates it!

4. What is your one must-have item for your baby?
An isofix carseat! Makes life so much easier than having to strap them in with a seatbelt.

5. How many kids do you plan on having?
Well. I planned on having two, but life had other ideas and I am now 15 weeks pregnant with number 3.

6. Date night? How many nights per month?
What’s that?

We don’t really have “Date Nights” as such. Although my inlaws have babysat for us a couple of times recently whilst we’ve been out for friends birthdays, and our friend is babysitting for us on Saturday night so we can go out for a belated Valentine’s meal. We keep saying we should see if once a month we could arrange a babysitter for date night, just haven’t got round to it.

7. Your child’s favourite show?
Currently, both boys love Octonauts.

8. Name one thing you bought before you had your baby and never ended up using?
The only thing we can think of is the pram attachment of the travel system. We’d generally clip the car seat into it.

9. Your child’s favourite food?
This is where the boys differ most. Jake is very fussy, and refuses to let a fruit or vegetable past his lips unless it’s in smoothie mode! His favourite dinner is “special pasta” (pasta & red pesto). Zack loves fruit, would quite happily sit munching grapes or strawberries.

10. How many cars does your family have?
Two. We have a VW Passat estate that hubby uses (although it used to be mine when we owned the Land Rover), and I have a Ford Fiesta. For a while we downsized to one car, when I was commuting to work on the train every day, we couldn’t justify having two. In hindsight, we wish we kept both cars as my insurance is now through the roof as we didn’t realise I would lose all my no claims bonus, so have had to start from scratch.

11. Weight gain before pregnancy, during and after and now?
My weight is something I have struggled with since Jake was born. I was lovely and slim before I fell pregnant with him, then I put on baby weight, then  before I had chance to lose it I got ill, so gained my cancer weight, and I’ve struggled ever since.

12. Dream holiday with your kids?
I think it would have to be Disneyland. Isn’t that where everyone would take their kids?

13. Dream holiday without your kids?
Well, this is difficult. I love hot sunny holidays, lying with a cocktail by the pool, reading my chick lit. Neil, not so much. I would love to go to New Zealand. I think that’s somewhere we’d both be happy going.

14. How has your life changed since your baby has been born?
Life is very different. I keep thinking about the Michael McIntyre sketch where it’s so much more difficult to leave the house when you have kids. It’s so true. We can’t do the things we used to do, go out to dinner just because we fancy it, go out to visit people on a school night, or go on a nice holiday.

But would we change it if we could? No.

15. Finish the sentence: ‘It makes my heart melt to see … ‘
Jake and Zack holding hands, or hugging each other.

16. Where do you shop for your kids?
Tesco, Asda, Primark, Marks and Spencer, Mothercare. Anywhere that has what I need for the right price really.

17. Favourite makeup and skincare products?
Boots no. 7 for make up, Body Shop for skincare

18. Huggies or Pampers?
Hated Huggies with Jake, they would always leak. With Zack I loved the Huggies newborn nappies. But generally we are Pampers or Tesco people.

19. Have you always wanted kids?
Yes. We always knew we’d have kids, just wanted a few years of just us first. Married in 2006, baby in 2009, so I think that worked quite well.

20. Best part about being a mum?
Seeing them develop their own personalities and sense of humour, squidgy cuddles.

 

Test, Try and Buy at The Baby Show

The Baby Show is back offering a shopping haven for new parents and parents-to-be at the NEC Birmingham from 18th-20th May 2012. Forget the hassle of the high street, The Baby Show takes out the stress and confusion of shopping for your baby by housing the UK’s biggest baby brands all under one roof, so you can compare and try products before you buy! With over 250 must-have brands including Fisher-Price, Mamas & Papas, Mothercare, Marks & Spencer, Britax, tommee tippee and new companies Mammae, Poco Nido, Kinderroom and Curaprox, there will be brilliant buys for all! The UK’s leading parenting experts will also be on hand to offer advice on sleep, breastfeeding and first aid.

Tickets are available in advance for £12.00 or two for £20.00, to book tickets visit www.thebabyshow.co.uk.

The Baby Show in association with Prima Baby and sponsored by Fisher-Price is an exciting event filled with the latest and greatest products in food & feeding, pushchairs, nappies & wipes, toys, clothing, furniture, car seats and carriers, from major brands.

Parents who come to The Baby Show will also find substantial offers and savings that cannot be found elsewhere.

Melanie Hall, Show Manager states: “The Baby Show is the destination for expectant and new parents. It is a fantastic day out; offering first class information, a chance to talk to like-minded mums and see the UK’s best baby brands all in one place. Our aim is for each parent to come away feeling happy, informed and confident in what they have chosen.

Fisher-Price
Fisher-Price will have the best available toys on display, ensuring that parents and parents-to-be will find something that’s ideal for little ones at every age.

Prima Baby
Prima Baby at stand N15 are giving visitors a free goody bag when two issues of Prima Baby magazines are purchased for just £2 (RRP £2.80 per magazine).

Face of the Show
The show sees the welcome return of the hugely popular Face of The Baby Show which offers parents the chance to enter their baby in the competition to find the face of The Baby Show and have the chance to be part of the 2013 marketing campaign. Hosted by Bumpkins (formally Sonam studios) each child will be photographed, capturing the very best images to be entered into the competition. What’s more, all parents will be given a free copy of the photograph of their child to take home from the photo experts at Bumpkins.

Me Time
For those looking for a relaxing and tranquil day out knowing your little one is cared for, the Fisher-Price crèche provides the perfect place and the safest hands in which to leave your children, where they can enjoy the latest toys for free and be supervised by fully trained and professional carers. The show is geared to making visitors lives easier and offers a home delivery service as well as the Emma’s Diary FREE shopping drop-off and collect by car service. There’s also the Emma’s Diary Mums meeting point, a fabulous arena to meet other new and expectant mums for a well-earned cuppa! The Pregnacare Juice bar will be serving fresh juices and smoothies across all three days to quench those shopping thirsts and give visitors a chance for a refreshing break. Superdrug are also at The Baby Show, be sure to stop by the Beauty Booth and take advantage of some great show discounts.

Free at the café!
Plum Baby’s under 1’s Cafe, will be serving little ones a sample of free baby food from 9.30am -5.00pm every day, as well as offering exclusive show offers on the Plum range.

The main stage
Not only a shopper’s dream, but The Baby Show is an event filled with expert advice from information including talks on breastfeeding by Clare Byam-Cook, sleep with Jo Tantum and first aid talks from The British Red Cross.

New Brands
New brands showcasing at the event this time include:-

Partners Labour of Love – A brand new app to assist pregnant women in the build up to birth

My Beauty Bundle – Perfect gift for pregnant women or new mums

BabyDam – Has changed bath time for good

SnuggleBundl – Innovative approach to lifting your baby

Laboraide by Opro – A product to assist in pain-free birth

Baby Mum-Mum – Food snack for babies, big American brand – new to the UK this year

Waterbaby – New bottled water containing Folic Acid for a healthy pregnancy – new to the market this year

The Baby Show at Birmingham NEC takes place between 18th–20th May 2012. Tickets are available in advance for just £12 each from www.thebabyshow.co.uk

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I love going to The Baby Show. I really enjoy wondering around and seeing all the different gadgets. Last year we bought Jake a swim jacket, and this year I am on the hunt for a new swaddle blanket for Zack.

I  have one pair of tickets to giveaway to a lucky reader.

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is to leave me a comment telling me what you would like to buy from The Baby Show.

For extra entries, you can do the following (one extra entry for each done):

For one extra entry, tweet the following: I want to win a pair of tickets to The Baby Show with @rozzibee http://bit.ly/KPRdWV 

For one more extra entry, go over to my facebook page and “like” it.

Leave me a comment if you have done either or both of these.

All entries must be received before 10pm on Sunday 13th May. Winner will be selected at random and contacted by me. UK entries only.

The winner, as chosen by random.org is Katrina Langley