Pregnancy and Childbirth Survey

Haven’t done one of these in a looong time! Hello 2008!

-What do you remember about finding out you were pregnant? With F, being shocked at how soon after we’d “pulled the goalie” that I got pregnant (3 weeks), and saying “oh my gawwdd” back and forth to one another in amazement. With J, being shocked to find out that I was pregnant with the surviving twin of a miscarriage! I was halfway done the pregnancy by then. 

– Who was the most excited to hear you were expecting? Pat’s mom!

– Did you find out the sex in utero? didn’t find out either

– Gender reveal party? no.
– Did you feel nauseous? Very early during each pregnancy. With F, we had a sailboat and took it out quite often. With prego nausea, it was almost unbearable. With J, I was working at a Greek restaurant, and the smell of the roasted lamb turned my stomach like nothing else in life.

– Any notable cravings? F, scrambled eggs and ketchup, J,bread and butter
– Heartburn? only once in a while with each.
– Swelling? Noticed in my face, mostly toward the end. 
– Mood swings? Probably since my husband could tell when I was pregnant before I did on both occasions, I reckon my demeanor was a tad off. Throughout (with each) I cried easily. I remember trying to watch The Revenant and had to turn it off after 20 minutes because of my uncontrollable sobbing.

– Did you read any books or take any classes? No classes, but I read books.Lots of birth stories from Ina May Gaskin’s books. I read Ingrid Bauer’s Diaper Free: The Gentle Wisdom of Natural Infant Hygiene two times during pregnancy with F, and one more time during pregnancy with J.  There was also a period where I obsessively watched YouTube videos of women giving birth unassisted. This counts as study?

– What were you doing when your water broke? Eating the best cheesecake I’ve ever made.

– Born how close to due date? F, 2 days early. J, 1 week early

– Midwife or doctor? Midwife Rhonda was front and center both times!
– Epidural? F, no. J, no
– Cesarean?  F, no. J, no
– Strategy for coping with labour? Amanda Bee gave me advice about controlling my breath by counting, which totally worked. The wisdom of the people who wrote their stories in Ina May Gaskin’s books helped me a lot too. “Make your monkey do it”, and “Sphincter Law” come to mind. Knowing that my body was strong enough to cope if my mind was strong. Keeping the mindset that nothing is wrong, Im not injured, I can do it, I can open. Relaxing and opening was a major concept. I was literally lolling my tongue out of my mouth saying “oooopen, oooopen” in the final moments before J came out. Every uterus-haver should know that they have the power to consciously control their cervix during child labour. 

– Hours in labour: F, 8. J, less than 1

– How long was transition (pushing)? F,15 minutes? J, 5 minutes?

– Induced? F, no. J, castor oil smoothie
– Weight: each were close to 8lbs
– Sex of baby: F, boy. J, girl 

– Place of birth: F, home. J, maternity ward 

– What do you remember about the first time you saw your baby? F. Let’s get that cord unwrapped from around your neck!  J, I can’t believe it’s over already

– Something that was never the same afterwards: We hardly ever watch any violent entertainment. The baby can feel it!!  

– How old is your baby now? F, 6 years. J, 22 months

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