Thursday, January 31, 2013

Birth Story

Felicia isn't even 3 weeks old and I feel like this written version of her birth story is missing a lot of the emotions that went on during the event. I decided that I had better get it down in writing asap, though, while the memories are fresh. I may add more details later, but for now, here is what I can put down in words:

On Friday, I was feeling very tired and uncomfortable. I was having what I thought were cramps and decided to take it easy at home. It was my second day of maternity leave. After talking to my Mom, I decided to tough it out and go grocery shopping. She explained that if this baby was to go past due, I would drive myself insane if I started cocooning at home the day before my due date.

Throughout the day, I noticed that I started losing what I was pretty sure was my mucus plug. After finishing the grocery shopping, I worked on things at home. I put Ponyo's Rock 'n Play Sleeper next to our bed, did some laundry, cleaned the kitchen (more than once), and did other general tidying.

By 9pm, I started having contractions, which again I thought were just pre-labor cramps and lower back pain. By the time The Bee got home from work a little after 10pm they were strong enough to make me want to lean on a counter to get through them as I washed dishes. We started timing things at 11pm and they seemed to be getting closer together. By 12:30am, they were 6-7 minutes apart. Shortly after, I had 3 contractions in a row that were 5 minutes apart. Then they started spacing themselves more...13, 14, 15 minutes apart. By 3am, I sent The Bee to bed and tried to rest on the couch while timing my contractions on my laptop.

The due date:
As of 8:30am Saturday morning, I was still having contractions but they were not timeable anymore. I called the 24 hour nurse line and they connected me with the doctor who was on call, Dr. B. She said that it was hard to tell what was going on but as long as Ponyo was moving 10 times an hour, once a day she was doing just fine. She was moving around a lot after every contraction, so I was no longer worried about her well being.

We went to my Mom's at 11am and The Bee got a haircut. Then we came home and took a 1.5 hour nap on the couch together. We were both exhausted from the night before, having been up all night with contractions/cramps. I was still having contractions/cramps every hour, though not consistently. I also started losing more and more of my mucus plug (very gross!).

That night, the contractions picked up again at 9pm. We started timing at around 11pm, just as we had the night before. We thought it was another false alarm. The Bee was working on his computer and I tried to rest on the couch between contractions. At 1:30am I felt a POP! and told The Bee that I thought my water broke! I went into the bathroom to check, and sure enough there was a lot of water! I put on a thick pad and changed into clean clothes while calling the 24-hour nurse line. The Bee gathered his toiletries to bring to the hospital.

The same doctor that I had talked to earlier in the weekend called me back. She asked where we were planning on delivering and when I told her, she said we couldn't go there...they were full! We had to go to the other hospital that she delivered at, which was further from our home. Thankfully, it was where I had my MRI and is in a neighboring city to where we both grew up. I told The Bee the change in plans and he got nervous, asking, "How do we get there?" I snapped at him, "Don't ask me! I am in labor!" He googled directions, we gathered the last of our bags, and we headed to the car.

It was 1 degree outside and The Bee realized he had forgotten to fill the gas tank on the way home from his haircut! So, we stopped at a gas station and he put in a few gallons. I was getting increasingly more uncomfortable and it was hard to breathe through contractions when confined to the passenger seat of the car.  We made it to the hospital around 2:10am.

The Bee offered to drop me off at the emergency room doors, but I didn't want to enter the hospital alone. Thankfully, we got a close parking spot and walked into the hospital together. I had to ask him to slow down because I was having contractions and was moving at the pace of a snail! When we entered, The Bee told the people at the ER desk that I was in labor. The security guards asked if we knew where to go. I said, "No, we weren't supposed to deliver here! Our hospital is full, though!" So, one of the guards said he would walk with us to the maternity ward. He started walking and I was trailing behind. He looked back and I apologized for walking so slowly! Then he got a worried look on his face and ran to get a wheel chair. So, he wheeled me the rest of the way to the elevator and to the room where we had to wait for a nurse to see if my water had actually broken and how dilated I was.

A nurse came in to get my driver's license and insurance card. I changed into a hospital gown. Then it felt like we waited FOREVER for a nurse to come in and see what was going on. I walked between contractions and knelt on a pillow I brought from home while leaning over a chair to get through contractions. When the nurse finally came in, she tested the fluid I was leaking and confirmed that it was amniotic fluid. She checked my cervix and I was already dilated to 7cm! I started crying at this point and thanked her for not telling me I had to go home when I felt like this! She laughed and said, "Oh, honey, you aren't going anywhere!" She asked what my birth plan was, Any drugs? An epidural? Did I want an IV port in case I changed my mind? I told her I wanted to avoid drugs if possible and did not want an IV port until it was absolutely necessary.

A few minutes later they wheeled my bed into a labor and delivery suite and I met the L&D nurse who would be working with me. She asked if I wanted a bath run and I said "Yes!" but by the time the tub was full, she checked my cervix again and I was dilated to 8cm...too far along to use the tub safely. Instead, I labored using a birthing ball. Sitting on the ball and rocking back and forth helped me get through the contractions. Every once in a while, I had to hop in the bed and she would check my cervix. Things were progressing well and The Bee held my hand through each contraction. He put a cool washcloth on my forehead and neck to keep me comfortable. He reassured me that I could do this, that I WAS DOING THIS!

My cervix was almost fully dilated, but was not thinning evenly. So, my L&D nurse had me try 3-4 contractions laying on each side with my top leg up in a brace. This was to help the sides of my cervix finish thinning with the help of different pressure. It helped a little, but wasn't doing the trick. At this point, I asked The Bee why we thought this was a good idea and started laughing like a crazy woman. I told him that this might be our only baby because I wasn't sure I could do this again (assuming we would ever be lucky enough to have a chance of even getting pregnant again). I asked the nurse when I would enter transition because I was getting nervous and wasn't sure I could handle much more because I was getting tired. She smiled and said, "You're in it! You have been for a while and you are almost ready to push, you are SO close!" She had me try a few contractions on all fours to help thin the front of my cervix. I started feeling like I had to push with my stronger contractions. She asked me to wait to push until there was no way that I could resist. I asked what would happen if I had to push and my cervix wasn't all the way ready. Would I hurt the baby in any way? She said that the baby would be fine, the reason you don't want to push before your cervix is ready is that early pushing can cause the cervix to swell, making it smaller again. It would reverse the progress I had already made.

After a few more contractions, the nurse and I made eye contact. I was very scared, because I HAD to push! She gave me a knowing look and told me that on the next contraction, she would hold back the front of my cervix and I should push. This would give Ponyo's head a chance to get past the part of my cervix that wasn't all the way thinned without the risk of swelling. We did it and it worked! The doctor was paged at that time. I pushed with about 4 contractions and the doctor arrived. It was about 5am at this point. I asked how long I would have to push. They told me that with first babies, it usually takes 1-3 hours. You'd better believe that I pushed with all my might with each contraction! The Bee held my hand and cheered me on the whole time. They told us she was crowning and asked if I wanted a mirror so I could see. I told them that it would probably make me nervous. A few pushes later, they told me that she had a ton of hair and asked if I wanted to feel the top of her head. I reached down and my eyes welled up when I felt her soft head of hair...the head and hair of my daughter! It seemed unreal! The doctor decided that I needed an episiotomy to minimize tearing. This part was the scariest for The Bee, he later told me. On the next push, her head was out. The Bee started crying and was amazed as he saw our little girl's head for the first time. Her shoulders were a challenge, but after several more pushes her shoulders cleared and then she just kind of slid out! It was 5:52am. I had actively pushed for about 45 minutes.

The doctor was holding her and asked The Bee if he wanted to cut the cord. He said, "Yes!" and did a good job despite being a little shaky from exhaustion and emotions. We heard the sweet sound of her first cry. They wiped her off quickly with a blanket and placed her on my chest. She looked around with wide eyes and I nursed her for the first time. My Mom arrived 5 minutes after she was born. I was still being stitched up!

I got to hold her for a few hours before they took her to weigh and measure. She was 8lbs on the dot and tall like her dad at 22.5in. Our amazing L&D nurse asked if I had taken birthing classes and I told her that we did a labor skills workshop. She said I have a very high pain tolerance and that it was hard to tell when I was having contractions most of the time given how relaxed I remained and the calm expression on my face. I started laughing and told her I was pretty nervous during a lot of it; I just kept reminding myself that each contraction had to end eventually and each contraction brought me closer to meeting our daughter! I also think I must have pretty bad menstrual cramps due to my endometriosis, which made me think that labor contractions weren't really all that painful in comparison.

After talking with the doctor, they told me that I was definitely in labor Friday night, all day Saturday, and then things really picked up when my water broke Sunday morning. They told me I did most of the work at home before I even got to the hospital and that is why I was 7cm upon being admitted. So, although it seems that I had a fast labor from 9pm Saturday night -5:52am Sunday, I was actually in labor for an additional 24 hours! Thank God that my water broke...with the way my contractions were going, we probably wouldn't have gone to the hospital in time without that very clear sign she was coming to meet us!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Baby Whisperer

The Bee went back to work last Thursday. Now that he has to wake up and be dressed and productive by a certain time in the morning, I have taken over night duty 100%. For the last 2 nights our silly girl decided not to sleep from about 11pm-4am AND she decided it would be a great idea to be fussy, too! Given the fact that The Bee has an exam for work tomorrow, Felicia and I spent the night in the living room so he could get some rest. By 4:30, she was asleep on my chest and didn't wake until 7 or so. At that point, I fed her and tried to put her in her Rock 'n Play Sleeper that she sleeps in next to my side of the bed. She would have none of that and I was so exhausted that I asked The Bee to walk with her before he got ready for work.

That man got her to fall asleep and I got 3 hours of rest IN BED. He is so good with her!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

These past 10 days

Things have been going well since Felicia made her debut. We were discharged from the hospital Tuesday afternoon and it seems crazy that we've already been home for a whole week! The Bee is still home with us as we've been dealing with some unexpected health issues. Nothing too serious...just a very cracked and raw nipple that has required me to pump on one side and do dropper feedings after nursing on my good side and a bladder infection that I finally got antibiotics for yesterday afternoon. We have a lactation consultant appointment at 1pm this afternoon and I am hopeful that I can pack away the pump for at least a few more weeks if we can get a good latch that doesn't cause anymore damage.

I am working on a birth story but am still processing some of what went down during my very fast, 100% natural (i.e. no pain meds at all) labor and delivery.

I am trying to catch up with all of you! I've been thinking of you gals a lot! Actually, at a henna get together about a year ago, some of the artists were saying that, "God always hears the prayers of a woman in labor" so I put in a few prayers for a couple of you (Erika and Laura, I hope 2013 is your year! Hope it doesn't freak you out that I was thinking of you during a few of those contractions!).

I'll leave you with this picture that The Bee took while we were snoozing Sunday evening before Felicia's waking hours (which are from 10pm-2am/3am, silly girl!).

Sunday, January 13, 2013


Felicia Rose

She was excited to meet us! Labor started at 9pm on her due date (1/12/13) and we were blessed to become a family of three at 5:52am this morning, 1/13/13. She was bigger than expected, weighing 8lbs even and measuring 22.5inches. 

More info to come after we rest and settle in. 

Thank you for all of the support and prayers you gave us along the way; I am so glad to call you friends!

Saturday, January 12, 2013


Last night, at about 9pm, I started having some lower back pain and cramping. By the time The Bee got home at 10:15, I was pretty sure they were some sort of contraction. Either very uncomfortable Braxton Hicks or the real deal that kicks off early labor. By 11pm we started timing them. The were almost exactly 9 minutes apart. By 12:30am, they were about 6-7 minutes apart. I had about 3 in a row that were 5 minutes apart and then they started to space themselves out a lot more...13, 14, 25 minutes apart. By 3am, I sent The Bee to bed (even though he tried to fight me on that) and I tried to rest on the couch and timed the contractions on my laptop using Contraction Master. I am sure this is TMI, but that is part of what these blogs are all about, right? In addition to the contractions, my body seemed to be, um, trying to clean itself out pretty thoroughly. I ran to the bathroom more times that I can count.

Now it is 8:30am and I am still having the contractions, but they don't seem to follow a rhythm anymore. I gave in and called the 24 hour nurse line and they connected me with the doctor who is on call. She said that it is hard to tell what is going on, but as long as Ponyo is moving 10 times within 60 minutes, once a day, she is doing just fine. Our little dancer pretty much moves every time a contraction ends (I don't think she likes being squished) so she must be doing alright. As for the bathroom breaks, she said it could be from the contractions or it could be a virus so I am to drink a lot of fluids and try to rest (ha! I think I got maybe 45 uninterrupted minutes of sleep last night!).

So, we'll see if anything comes of this. On today's agenda: Going to my Mom's to get The Bee a haircut (she is a hairdresser with an in-home shop and The Bee hasn't gotten his haircut since June! Only my silly man would wait until his baby's due date to schedule something like that). Then we were planning on going to see The Hobbit, but if I am running to the bathroom multiple times an hour, I think we'll need to change plans and stay home after the haircut.

I want to give a virtual hug to two I try to figure out what Ponyo is doing, two of our fellow bloggers are dealing with setbacks and could use some love. Laura at The Adventures of an Infertile Myrtle got a false positive after her second cycle with a new doctor. Jessah at Dreaming of Dimples just found out that her IVF cycle needs to be cancelled due to poor response to the drugs. Please keep these women in your thoughts and prayers!

Friday, January 11, 2013

OB lockdown

This morning I called my clinic because I have been having spotting since yesterday morning. I had a feeling it was from Wednesday's appointment and the lovely cervix check. Sure enough, the nurse said that is what it sounds like and it should resolve itself by tomorrow night.

While I had her on the phone, I asked about the flu situation at the hospital. She said that the OB ward is currently on strict lock down in regards to visitors. So, it looks like we won't get any visitors unless the flu somehow starts to simmer down (unlikely, since it usually peaks in February). Hopefully our moms can come. I am sort of glad that the hospital is saying no visitors, even though it makes me sad that we won't get to experience the hospital stay we imagined. This way, at least we know our family and friends aren't going to contract the flu while visiting the hospital because of us! I would feel terrible if anyone visited us and then got sick as a result.

So, it looks like it will be me, The Bee, and Ponyo those first few days.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Influenza :(

Thankfully, I am healthy. I got the vaccine early in the school year and, although it is not 100% effective, the medical community is saying that 92% of the flu cases they have seen are strains that are included in the current vaccine. I live in Minnesota and we currently have the highest national death count for flu victims this season. Twenty-seven in all. Of those, 23 have been in the last 12 days.

The hospital where Ponyo is supposed to be born was featured on the news tonight because they are maximum capacity due to flu patients. The hospital is so full that they have flu patients sharing rooms, which they normally don't do. I know the maternity ward is separate from the flu area, but I am also concerned about visitors. Hopefully our friends and family will be responsible and thoughtful enough to wait to meet Ponyo if they have any symptoms. I am sad that most of our nieces and nephews may need to wait to meet her...several hospitals in Minnesota are not currently allowing visitors who are under the age of five. Of our 4 nephews and 4 nieces, only 2 of them are over the age of five.

Also weighing on me is the fact that The Bee has not been vaccinated. I don't want him to 1. get sick or 2. get Ponyo sick. I am sure his immune system is compromised thanks to his lack of sleep and terrible diet (he has been eating out for lunch and dinner for the last 2 weeks or was the first day in 2 weeks that I had time to pack his lunch and he is still not home at 11:15pm, which means his company ordered dinner for any employees who are still there).


Oh, and to add to the has been raining all day, has turned to freezing rain as the night has gone on and is supposed to do the same for the next two days. On Ponyo's due date, it is supposed to rain until about 9am and then the temperature is supposed to drop to 12 degrees and everything will be covered in ice! Not ideal for driving to the hospital when in labor!

Thank God that I have tomorrow off of work. Hopefully I can get a lot accomplished and feel less stressed!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Update 39 weeks + 4 days

  • Ponyo's heart rate was 164 - she was being a wiggle worm per usual.
  • She is still head down...there is practically zero chance that she'll be able to flip into any other position at this point. She is too big and cramped!
  • I am 2.5 cm dilated and still 60-70% effaced. My doctor said that is good progress and if I continue to walk and spend time on my feet, she thinks labor could start on its own within the next week. She did have me keep my appointment for next Wednesday, just in case, though. And she told me to get a pedicure if I want try and help things along. She also told me to take naps because she can tell I haven't been sleeping well. So, lots of walking (grocery shopping), standing (preparing some freezer meals), and napping are on the agenda for tomorrow!
  • If Ponyo isn't seeming like she'll come on her own, the earliest we'd talk about inducing would be Friday, 01/18/13. 
In other news:
  • I am done teaching! I painted with my kindergartners today before heading to my appointment and now I won't be back to teach until next August! I'll still be doing school stuff, just from home or infrequently at school (i.e. attending some meetings, doing activities for the auction, helping my sub pack up the room in June!). I am so glad to be done, especially after learning that strep, head lice and influenza are moving through the school. We had 3 confirmed cases of influenza today and several more students were going in for testing. Scary stuff - apparently the vaccine is only 63% effective. Yesterday a 15-year-old girl from a suburb right outside of my city passed away from influenza. 
  • The Bee got home at 4:45am this morning. Ugh. I need that man to get more sleep. Not sure how he is supposed to help me and Ponyo at the hospital if he is so worn down! Plus, I just worry about his health in general. He is losing weight and looks so tired! 
  • We plan to go and see The Hobbit (that was The Bee's idea) on Saturday if Ponyo hasn't joined us yet. He found a theater right by the hospital, just in case...haha! 
Now I'm off to switch the laundry. On my way home from the appointment I stopped at Target for some odds and ends, including underpants for me and The Bee. My mom advised me to do a week's worth of new underwear for both of us and keep them in a separate drawer from all the others so if we find ourselves too tired/overwhelmed to do laundry, we'll at least have a week of clean underwear before we have to panic! I'll be stashing some of The Bee's undershirts and socks there, too!

Monday, January 7, 2013

2 days until leave!

I talked to my principal this morning and he was supportive of my decision to start leave on Thursday. I suppose it is 2 fewer days to pay both me and my sub. I had one of my 6th grade classes, both of my first grade classes, and both of my second grade classes for the last time today. I will see both of my kindergarten, third, fourth, fifth grade classes and one of my sixth grades one more time each. It seems unreal. My partner teacher was not at school and won't be back until Thursday at the earliest because his 4-month-old is in the hospital with RSV. So, I won't work with him again until August!

I am not sure if it is the pre-labor energy burst, the fact that I squeezed into my compression tights this morning (quite a feat at 39 weeks + 2 days, holy cow!), or that I have a definite end to my time at school before Ponyo's arrival, but I am feeling alright tonight. Tired, yes. Achy,  yes. But not nearly as tense or freaked out. My sub is set for this week and next and I am making progress on my maps. As long as Ponyo doesn't come within the next few days, I plan to grocery shop and tidy up at home on Thursday. I will also try to rest a bit, but I want to spend a decent amount of time on my feet as long as I am comfortable. We need to encourage her not to want to stay in my belly for TOO long! The Bee would still prefer that Ponyo waits until her due date, but we are both feeling so ready to meet her! Surprisingly, The Bee will get more sleep with a newborn than he has the past several months due to his work schedule! I am thankful that his employer gives 1 week paid paternity leave on top of any PTO he decides to use when Ponyo is brand new. That is better than my benefits, which only pays me for any time I have saved in sick leave!

So, tomorrow I paint 4 times, do paper mache twice, and work with charcoal and soft pastels once. Wednesday, I paint once and then my sub teaches solo as I head out for my doctor's appointment at 1pm...then I am finished teaching for the school year. I will still attend meetings and professional development opportunities starting in February, but I won't be a teacher until next September. Weird. I have crazy mixed emotions about it all...I have been told by many that my concern for my job and the guilt I feel for taking so much time off will melt away once Ponyo is here. My partner teacher's sub (who is also the mother of 2 of my students) came and talked to me today. When I told her it was a hard decision to make about staying home for the rest of the year, she told me that I won't regret it...she stayed home with her sons for 14 years! That made me feel more confident about taking 7 months!

Two days from now, on January 9th, is the anniversary of me finding out that I have endometriosis. Never in a million years would I have guessed that I would teaching my last day of school and starting maternity leave a year after that doctor's appointment!

We feel very, very lucky.

Extremely lucky.

And so thankful for this child.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

39 weeks + 1 day

Today we are driving an hour outside of the cities to visit my best friend, her husband, and new baby boy! He was born very early Friday morning after my friend was induced at 41 weeks + 1 day Thursday morning. As you may (or may not) recall, my best friend and her husband started trying to conceive about 3 months before The Bee and I did. We didn't talk much about our struggles in the very beginning because neither of us wanted to believe that there was actually something preventing us from successfully getting pregnant, even though we were both secretly worried. By the summer and fall of 2011, we talked A LOT about what we were going through. We both started seeing specialists and we started e-mailing each other happy thoughts everyday to help us get through the tough times (usually these thoughts were things that we were thankful for or just silly things that brightened our days). I am so excited to finally meet her little miracle baby! 

Yesterday I reached 39 weeks*. A co-worker of The Bee's, who has a 4-month-old, recently told him that the last month really, really sucks, so be prepared! That was about 4 weeks ago. I kind of laughed because I had been feeling pretty well still, but now I know what his co-worker meant! Ponyo is still moving a lot but there are fewer kicks and a lot more big stretches. Her space is becoming so limited. I am progressively becoming more uncomfortable. After not too many Braxton Hicks contractions Thursday and Friday (I am wondering if I was having them but was just too busy at work to really notice) I started having a ton again yesterday after The Bee and I got home from working in my classroom for a few hours. I am seriously considering talking to my principal tomorrow about starting my leave on Thursday.

That's cutting my teaching days short by 2 days of what I had planned. In reality, she could be born before then, but I think Wednesday is a perfect day to end on...I have school mass in the morning and then will teach one kindergarten class before my long term sub comes in and finishes the day solo so I can get to my doctor's appointment on time. That will have given us almost 5 full days in the art room together for her to ask questions and for me to give her any inside info on students and techniques that I use to keep things running smoothly. She is very competent, so I know she will be fine even if Ponyo decides to come tonight! My goal is Wednesday, though, because of the nice short day and because my sub has an appointment in the morning and can't come in until after the first class of the day. I feel like I am being sort of a weakling by considering starting leave before my due date, but it is hard to even make it to the bathroom easily at this point (I walk so slow and it is all the way on the other side of the school! I waddle there at the pace of a snail!) and I am not getting very much sleep lately. I am sorry for being a whiner...I am thankful for these aches and pains because I know the end result will be so worth it! I still ache, though, and I still don't like having to waddle across the school just to use the bathroom during the school day! Regarding the bathroom, I am so incredibly lucky that my sub started shadowing me last week because on Friday I was able to take a bathroom break during a class that I normally couldn't have trusted alone!

*39 week photo posted under pregnancy tab

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

38 weeks + 4 days

At my appointment today:

  • I weighed 142 lbs (How did I gain 3 lbs in one week?! Must have been all my recent couch time + the ridiculous amount of fudge and peppermint bark I consumed over Christmas break)
  • My blood pressure was good
  • My hemoglobin was 12.1
  • Ponyo's heart rate was 153
  • I was 1.5 cm dilated
  • I was 60-70% effaced
My doctor said I am making slow but steady progress and she wouldn't be surprised to see me at my regular appointment next Wednesday. She said that it is no wonder I am uncomfortable at this point, Ponyo's head is really low. That made me feel better because I have been trying to act like I feel fine...I mean I have wanted this for so long and I am not about to start complaining now! Truth is, pain is pain, discomfort is discomfort, crappy sleep is crappy sleep no matter if you vocalize it or not and no matter how much you want the end result of such ailments. I was glad to be validated so I don't feel like a wuss anymore!

In other news: 
  • My sub starts shadowing me tomorrow! I am nervous but also glad...the transition will (hopefully) be a smooth one for everybody. The number of students and teachers that found ridiculous reasons to come by the art room today to see if I was there/how I am doing was both heartwarming and hilarious. I only have 7 teaching days left before I start leave (unless Ponyo comes early).
  • I am missing The Bee tonight, and will continue to do so all week. His "busy season" officially started at work today. That means coming home midnight or later M-F and possibly Saturday, too. We are hoping Ponyo waits so that things aren't too stressful for him. His teams at work have set up back-ups for him so he can leave to be with me at a moment's notice, but without him there things will be a bit crazy until the first big deadline is met this Saturday. 
  • If you have a spare moment, hop on over to Megan's blog A journey through weightloss, dealing with PCOS, and life and leave her a nice comment. She and her husband conceived a little girl last April and after some monitoring this morning, she had a c-section scheduled for this afternoon due to blood pressure concerns. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Hospital bags

Seems like Ponyo is starting to get some ideas about wanting to meet us. Nothing telling us that labor is imminent, but things that are definitely signs that my body is preparing for her arrival. Frequent Braxton Hicks contractions, feeling her movements much lower than before, and possibly (sorry, this is gross) the loss of parts of my mucus plug over the last few days. So I thought I'd share what is in the hospital bags. I am getting very anxious (both in the excited way and the super nervous way) and want to make sure that leaving for the hospital is as smooth as possible.

We have 3 bags packed for the hospital. One (the smallest) is to come with us immediately as we check in and spend time in the delivery room. The other 2 can stay in the car until we move to the post delivery room. The highlighted things are items that I'll hopefully remember to pack on the way out the door (camera and makeup).

Small carry-on type bag (to come with us upon check-in at hospital):
Snacks for The Bee (and for me postpartum)
Book for The Bee
Book for me
Baby book (in case we can get the doctor to do the hand and foot prints at the hospital)
Juice boxes (apple)
Bendy straws
Knit maternity skirt for laboring
Knit robe for laboring (not full length)
Sports bra for laboring
2 pair grippy socks (for walking in delivery room/hallways)
Phone charger
Hard candy
Insurance cards

Suitcase (to be left in car until after delivery)
For Ponyo:
2 long sleeved onesies
1 going home outfit (layette with convertible gown/pant outfit, socks, hat, bib)
1 gown
1 pair of footed pants (to go with a onesie in case she is too big for her going home outfit)
2 burp cloths

For me:
2 pair underwear (a size bigger than I normally wear)
2 nursing tanks*
1 nursing bra
1 pair loose fitting sweatpants*
1 zippered hoodie*
1 boyfriend cardigan
1 pair maternity leggings
Toiletries (shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, brush)
TUCKS pads with witch hazel (my sister gave these to me and said to bring them, I'd rather not imagine why)
Breast pads
Heavy flow pads
Flip flops
1 pair grippy socks
1 pair normal socks*
1 button front nightgown
*these will be my going home outfit

Duffel bag for The Bee (to be left in car until after delivery):
1 blanket
1 travel pillow
2 undershirts
1 t-shirt
2 pairs boxer shorts
2 pairs socks
1 pair sweatpants
1 pair jeans
1 zippered hoodie
Toiletries (toothbrush, contact solution, etc)

To leave in the car until the day we get to go home:
1 car seat (obviously!)
2 car seat safe, fleece snowsuits for Ponyo (one from my Mom, and one from a family at my school. I think the one from my Mom may be too big, so I am bringing both)
1 minky blanket that matches the car seat canopy
1 empty duffel bag for any extra items we need to bring home (i.e. the extra diapers and the lovely mesh panties I have read so much about)

I also want to get some chocolates and fruit to bring for the hospital staff, but honestly I don't know if I'll remember to grab that on the way out the door!

Any other suggestions?

Megan, Scarlett, TheRedHead...what did you pack?