Sunday, April 28, 2013

Welcome


Welcome! Oh boy (literally) what a difference a year makes! 7 months ago my husband and I found out we were expecting our first baby, 20 weeks after that we found out... "It's a boy"! I cannot tell you how much the pending arrival of our first baby has opened our eyes to so many things. We've been on a journey of discovery these past 7 months and we continue to learn and experience new things everyday. We've made some drastic decisions and some major changes in the way we live our lives. We invite you to follow us on this journey, as I'm sure it will not only be interesting, but comical too!


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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Still processing...



It was not what we had planned, but Henry's birth could not have been more rewarding. We are learning everyday that we are not in charge... our birth story is a perfect example of that. Henry has humbled us and we feel so blessed to hold him in our arms. Our hearts could not possibly stretch any bigger... we are overflowing. We have always believed that patience and time brings us things greater than we could ever imagine. Our family saying has always been "Time has told me, you're a rare, rare find". Henry was 3 weeks overdue... I'd say that's very fitting.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

It came and went...


It's emotional when you see your due date come and go without out any sign of baby's arrival. You wait months to get to this day, only to find out it was just a guess. I see now why people in the natural birth world call it a "guess day" not "due date". I like "guess day" better... less pressure. But, regardless of what you call it... when you finally make it to that day... you can't imagine waiting any longer. We are just so excited to meet our baby boy. I've been playing around with natural induction methods... one: because they are totally safe and harmless to baby and two: I'm just so darn excited! Luckily, since we are having a home birth, we are on no ones time clock other than Henry's. It's very freeing... to let my body do what it wants, when it wants to. Of course baby can't stay in there forever... and being too far overdue will require me to seek medical attention. But, that is far from today and far from our minds. Until then, we are going to take this time to enjoy the anticipation and the excitement.

I'm so thankful for my friends and family... the ones that have been spoiling me with bake goods (Krissy Bailey), the ones that have kept me company during these long days and even the ones that have given me my space.  I've met so many amazing women during my pregnancy...  that have built me up and given me strength to see that I am capable of accomplishing my ultimate goal. I can honestly say I do not feel nervous... I feel anxious, ready to be in the thick of things... looking inward and seeing myself getting through this. I truly feel that as each contraction passes... it will give me more and more confidence to push forward. I keep telling myself  "the only way out of this is through it". Of course the excitement of seeing my baby for the first time will keep me focused too. I could not be happier with our home birth decision. I've built a team around me that I feel totally safe with and nurtured by. I can't wait to share my birth story with you. Stay tuned....

Sunday, July 3, 2011

To Henry....

Patiently waiting for your arrival...

video

Love,
Mommy & Daddy

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Yes, I'm that person...

You know those totally cliche pregnancy symptoms, like weird cravings, peeing, farting and those nasty hormone rages? Yes that's me! I told myself I wasn't going to be that person and without any warning here I am. I guess my first wake up call was when I showed up to a mexican fiesta girls night with a huge birthday cake in hand. I thought "Who doesn't love birthday cake?". Well little did I know, I was portraying pregnancy at it's finest. Not only did no one want birthday cake at a mexican fiesta, but I was the only one who had a piece. In fact, when it was time to leave... I was told to take the cake home with me, because frankly no one felt like eating cake. So there I was, birthday cake in hand and my tail between my legs (but secretly happy because I had this huge sheet cake all to myself). I had just realized then and there, that I'm totally turning into that person I tried so hard to avoid. Cravings can be so embarrassing!

Then we have those lovely hormone rages that my hubby has become all too familiar with. He burped the other night after drinking a soda and I almost divorced him right then and there. Thankfully, I come down from my hormone high, but it usually results in a little damage control on my part. Now we have a new rule in the house, no more pointing out when I turn into a monster, just grin and nod... oh yeah, and don't forget to tell me how beautiful I look. He actually agreed to the new rule and that's why I love him so much. I've got the best husband ever... oh yeah, must I remind you of the nightly foot rubs and the cute little conversations he has with my belly. He loves talking to our baby in this really deep Barry White voice. {I gotta give a little shout-out to my mother-in-law here for raising 3 boys. 3 very perfect, smart and sensitive boys that make the best husbands ever. (Luckily, I managed to legally snag one for myself, there are still 2 more on the market) I don't know what she did, but she did it right.}

So after my realization that no matter how hard I try to hide it, it's inevitable... I'm your stereotypical pregnant women. I have late night cravings, I tell my husband I want a divorce just about every other week, I pee all the time, I get winded just talking, I fart... yup, I fart and I constantly spill food on my belly (I call it my built in crumb catcher). The list goes on and on....

I'm embracing this whole process now... so much so, that I think my husband is starting to worry. He's busted me twice now, licking the inside of food wrappers. I'll be damned if one morsel of food is left behind. I'm wearing this pregnancy badge loud and proud... there's no turning back now.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Our Home Birth Decision


Go ahead, insert criticism {here}... Or better yet, let me give you a few moments to stop laughing and compose yourself. Ready? Okay... Don't worry we've heard it all. Our decision to have our first baby at home has been met with a lot of worry and criticism from our family and friends. We totally understand the worry and well, the criticism, that just comes with the territory. My favorite comments thus far are from those who've experienced the pain of labor.... comments like "Just wait till those contractions start getting stronger, you'll be begging to go to the hospital" or "Don't kid yourself, get the drugs". It's almost a rookie vs. veteran war out there and since we all know I'm a rookie when it comes to birthing a baby, people automatically assume I'm crazy for making such a bold decision. It's sad, I would assume more women would be encouraging me, but as I'm learning, birth can be a touchy subject with other women, especially if their experience was less than stellar. I respect all women and their choices surrounding birth... it's their business, their bodies and overall their experience. Who am I to say what choices are right and wrong. All I can do is make a plan for myself and my baby and hope that people will respect me in the same way I do them.

What brought us to this decision: I owe a lot of my new found knowledge to a very dear friend who came over to my house one day and woke me up from my 1st trimester stupor. I was so overwhelmed with being pregnant and sick that the last thing I wanted to focus on was how I was going to birth this baby. I figured I would just go to the hospital. I really hadn't put much thought into other options. I didn't even know there were other options. She shared her birth story with me and I was hooked from there. It wasn't a painful, dramatic, emergency-like birth story. You know the ones, we've all heard them. (Unfortunately, we hear about them all too often.) Her story was so positive. Shortly after our talk, I came to the conclusion that I wanted to have this baby naturally. I was determined to read and watch everything I possibly could to prepare my mind, body and soul to have this baby without any medical intervention. I switched from an OB to a local midwife. I wanted to work with someone who viewed birth as a natural process not a medical one. I was content, but I still didn't feel like I was going to get the unmedicated birth I wanted. A few months later Dave and I enrolled ourselves into an all natural birth class. This is also where we met our Doula. After speaking with her about some concerns I had with my current midwife, she asked if I had ever considered a home birth. A birth at home? Yeah, that sounded scary to me, but after talking to her she alleviated almost all of my fears. When Dave and I returned home that evening, we realized that in order to do this our way we had to take the birth of our baby out of the hospital and into a place we found most comfortable... HOME. (My Defense: Yes, it's possible to have a natural childbirth in a hospital, but it's rare. It requires a lot of advocacy on your part, a Midwife or an OB that works under the midwifery model of care and an extensive birth plan and well, way too much energy that neither of us felt like exerting. I highly reccommend the documentaries "The Business of Being Born", "Orgasmic Birth" or "Pregnant in America".) Our decision was inevitable, we couldn't deny how passionately we felt about all aspects of our birth being natural and so the choice was made.

Where we are today: Today we are working with a home birth midwife that we adore. The quality of care I get from her far surpasses that I've gotten from any doctor thus far. She's sympathetic, encouraging, nurturing and she gives the best hugs! She's certified and knowledgeable in all aspects of birth. She truly believes a women's body is meant to birth a baby. She's just there to assist in the process. We love how she always encourages Dave to play an active roll in my pregnancy and she will only schedule evening appointments with us to ensure Dave is present. We love her already and couldn't be more pleased and comfortable with our decision.

My Body: Both Dave and I want to make sure my body is in the best condition possible to facilitate an easier labor. You wouldn't show up to a Marathon without months of training, would you? Well, neither are we! I've had to make some major changes in my diet, high in good fats and protein, green veggies and fresh fruit. I'm taking lots of vitamins and herbal teas to get my uterus in the strongest condition possible. It's been tough, as I'm not the type to watch what I eat... but this isn't about just me anymore. We've been trying to eat as local as possible and switched to drinking milk straight from the farm and thanks to my family we have access to fresh eggs... not the store bought kind. (That's a whole other blog post in itself). Don't get me wrong... I still indulge. We all remember that dill pickle chip incident and well I hate to admit it but I've graduated from one ice cream cone before bed, to two ice cream cones! I gotta have a little fun here. Today marks the first day of no chairs. I'm now sitting on a birth ball only, this allows my uterus to get into the best position possible. Posture has a lot to do with your labor outcome. I'm also seeing a chiropractor to get my whole body aligned, especially my pelvis. We don't want little Henry getting caught up on a titled pelvis... which is very common. We've even gotten rid of our cable... which doesn't seem like it has anything to do with labor, but not having access to my favorite shows has allowed both of us to spend more time reading and talking. It's given us time to prepare in ways we may not have otherwise. I'm not perfect, I'm still learning (hence the blog title "Little Owl Mama")... just simply a mother making her very first decision and willing to share it with the world.

Healthy Mom / Healthy Baby: Above all we want the outcome of a healthy mom and a healthy baby. Our goal is to accomplish this in the comfort of our own home. But, we also realize that emergencies happen and for that, thank god we have hospitals and doctors. If something arises and there is a need for a hospital transport, our midwife is knowledgeable enough to make that judgement call and we fully trust her to do so. Until then, we will continue to encourage each other and do whatever is necessary to prepare my body for our ultimate goal. A happy, blissful, peaceful birth at home, not only for us but for our baby.


Dave and I learn something new everyday and applying these new principles to our lives is not something that happens overnight, we're better today then we were yesterday and so on and so forth we will continue to live. Won't you join us on our journey?

Some of my favorite quotes:
"Midwives see birth as a miracle and only mess with it if there's a problem; doctors see birth as a problem and if they don't mess with it, it's a miracle!" - Barbara Harper in Gentle Birth Choices


"Treating normal labors as though they were complicated can become a self-fulfilling prophecy." - Rooks


"Women's strongest feelings [in terms of their birthings], positive and negative, focus on the way they were treated by their caregivers." - Annie Kennedy & Penny Simkin

Photo Credit: christine [cbszeto] at Flickr