What I am packing in my hospital bag

With my second child due in a couple of months, I decided to review all the fun labor and delivery info available out there – most recently Pinterest. There are lots of different posts about “what to pack” and some of them seem a bit much, to me. People and hospitals are different, so to each her own, but this is what worked for us last time, and what I will be packing this time. I would take a tour of your labor and delivery unit and ask questions. Sometimes you have a shared room, sometimes they are small, sometimes you have a shower or a bath, sometimes you don’t. Also, sometimes your recovery room doesn’t have a lot of extra room and some hospitals don’t allow husbands to stay the night. We stayed at our hospital one night – other hospitals require two. If you have a c-section, you will probably stay 3 days. All these factors may effect your packing list.

packing list

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He’s Here! Birth Story

I haven’t been on the computer much these last few weeks because our handsome little man has been keeping me busy! Gabriel Joseph was born on May 12th, at 5:22am. We named him after Marc’s father, Joseph Gabriel (which we planned even before we knew we were having a boy) and it just so happens, they share the same birthday as well! Gabriel also decided to make his appearance the day before mother’s day (the day before I was due), so it was an extra special weekend.

Dad holding his son for the first time

Gabriel is currently asleep, snuggled onto my chest; the perfect spot to give lots of baby kisses. We are absolutely in love with him and think he is the sweetest thing ever. He is quite alert, even in the beginning, but he has been quite kind in the sleep department at night. In fact, there has only been 2 sleep-deprived nights, and that was a result of food I ate that didn’t sit well with him (broccoli the first time and Chinese food the second time). He sleeps 2.5-4 hour stretches at night, and usually goes to sleep easily after being changed and fed. We feel truly blessed!

Now onto our birth story, which is not sugar coated, may be a little TMI for some, but it’s the honest truth (click the “more” link under the picture to continue reading)

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37… or 36 Weeks Along. EDD and Induction Rant

Sunday I supposedly hit the 37 week mark in my pregnancy. Although, when I count from ovulation, I am about a week behind. So really, I am closer to 36 weeks than 37.

Does a week off really matter? I guess only if the little Mr. decides he wants to be in there for 42 weeks (well, technically it would be only 40, since the first two weeks you aren’t even pregnant…). Most midwives and doctors alike don’t want you going past 42 weeks, so if they say I am 42 weeks, but I know I am only 41 weeks, it could be a problem. But we can cross that bridge if we get to it.

I’m feeling brave. Here’s the latest pregnancy picture:

Have you ever done internet research on due dates? It’s pretty crazy. Maddening really. There is really no accurate way to estimate due dates – even with a scan. Even searching “how to estimate due dates’ can get a bit confusing! I know exactly when I ovulated and when the egg implanted (thanks to Natural Family Planning/Fertility Awareness Method), yet the doctors have my estimated (key word there) due date about a week off.

You are considered full term at 37 weeks – 42 weeks (God forbid you go over!), yet two of those weeks you are technically not even pregnant. This logic states that you ovulated about two weeks after you started your period; something I do NOT do, and can vary with many other women.

For those who have absolutely no clue when they got pregnant (often due to hormonal issues; PCOS, Menopause, etc.), they have to depend measuring correctly via sonogram or ultrasound. Did you know that ultrasounds can be 2 pounds off? There is a big difference between a 5 pound baby and a 7 pound one (about 4-5 weeks gestation, sometimes).

So if your doctor estimates your due date 2-3 weeks ahead of schedule, come 42 weeks they want that baby out (even if there is no sign of distress from mother or baby), and you can be induced and deliver a baby that is really only 39 weeks. And not all babies at 39 weeks are ready to be born (hence why you probably haven’t gone into labor yet).

It just amazes me (and annoys me) how much information there is out there about why you shouldn’t induce in almost all cases, yet we live in a time where (according to the CDC) about 20% of labors are induced (another study, placed the rate at closer to 40%). I’m not just blaming the doctors either – mothers play a big part in it as well.

I guess this rant/babble goes along the same lines of why I get so confused when pregnant women make no attempt to educate themselves about anything regarding the health of themselves and their baby during pregnancy. There is so much information out there so readily available, why not take advantage of it? Even 5 minutes on Google and you could learn a few things.

I’m not saying there is no reason to induce, sometimes there is. I’m not getting on a high horse and saying that all women, everywhere, should have a natural, unmedicated birth. I’m saying that no matter what decision we make, it should at least be a somewhat educated one. And if you have internet, there should be no excuse.

It is also very easy to get biased information. If you are searching around on a certain topic, make sure you look at both sides and check your sources. It is very easy to find the information you want to see by how you word the search terms.

Anyways *gets off soap box*

I’m in no hurry for this little guy to make his appearance just yet. It may be uncomfortably warm, painful to roll over in bed, and unpleasant to have feet jammed up in my ribs, but we need to get moved and settled into our new house (which would close already if the selling bank would submit a from). I think my thighs are growing exponentially and it’s getting quite difficult to bend over, but I would rather not have to bring a baby home to a house full of unpacked boxes! We can revisit these feelings if we ever get settled into the new home.