Sunday, July 31, 2011

Thoughts from Clint - Baby Classes!!


Holy smokes, we went to our first “birthing class” last Sunday.  It’s the one with “the video”.  If you do not know what “the video” is, you have not been to a proper birthing class.

It was a good experience, I am glad we did it – and I am glad Melissa is my wife, because there is no way I could have sat through that class and not laughed a lot.  Imagine a classroom with 15 pregnant women and their ‘partners’, all walking in with their 2 pillows as requested in the confirmation email.  Some of the women having 'birthing binders' complete with their 'birth plans' - a little too intense for me.

The walls were filled with several intimidating diagrams and photos of things that should not be photographed.  And then on the front table is this giant knit-stocking cap with something inside of it – here is a photo of one I found on the internet…


 The instructor squeezed it (mimicking a uterus) and of course, a baby starting popping out.  So here came the baby doll, complete with umbilical cord and yes, after a bit more squeezing, out came the placenta.  Holy smokes – that was a revelation!
It was all typical stuff, I guess – but then they had us doing breathing and relaxation exercises.  I guess I am just too goofy for that to work.  Fortunately, Melissa has a great sense of humor.   We all got mats, and took the pillows we brought and spread out across the floor.  The instructor turned off the lights and turned up the Yanni music.  We first learned a lower back massage technique, my wife, of course, does not like massages…  Highlight though were the ‘pelvic tilts’.  Basically you get on all fours and arch your back – they suggested you do this 3 times per day, 20 reps each.  As Yanni inspired us, Melissa got to tilt #3 looked at me and said, “This is stupid, I am getting an epidural.”  Awesome.

We also went to a breastfeeding class – pretty amazing stuff.  It is truly remarkable how this all works and how the mother’s body can provide exactly what the baby needs.  Nothing really funny in class except for when we walked in, we saw this:

You’ll notice that there are 12 baby dolls and to keep it PC, there are 2 different races represented.  In our class, there were 11 white couples and 1 African-American, and 7 white dolls and 5 black dolls.  They sent us to a break and told us to grab a doll on our way back in.  Let’s just say we were white couple #7 – not an important deal, but of course we giggled a little bit as the other couples walked in and didn't have a choice...

That’s about it – we’ve had a great time pulling the nursery together – it’s just about ready.  Just need to settle on a name and wait out 7 more weeks and it’s baby time!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Week 32

Pregnancy Highlights for the Week

How Far Along: 32 weeks



Fruit/Veggie: A large jicama - 16.7 inches long head to toe and weighs almost 3.75 pounds.

Baby changes:  You're gaining about a pound a week and roughly half of that goes right to your baby. In fact, she'll gain a third to half of her birth weight during the next 7 weeks as she fattens up for survival outside the womb. She now has toenails, fingernails, and real hair (or at least respectable peach fuzz). Her skin is becoming soft and smooth as she plumps up in preparation for birth.
Best Moment this Week: Our first shower!  Kathy and Ashley threw a fantastic shower on Saturday.  We got a lot of great things and cute clothes - we are definitely very lucky to have such supportive family and friends!

Gender: Sweet baby girl! Still working on a name, but I think we are really close.

Movement: She's still active, hasn't run out of space yet.  I try really hard to guess if I'm being kicked or punched, and which way she is positioned, but I have no idea.

Food Cravings: Still the same, nothing too exciting.

What I Miss: Running, wine, being able to keep up when I walk with people, clothes fitting.  I've started outgrowing some of my early maternity shirts...that can't be a good sign :)

Sleep: About the same.

What I am looking forward to: We have another pretty unplanned weekend coming up, so hopefully we will get some more work done on the nursery and rest of the house.  August is going to be really busy so I will definitely enjoy having a weekend that isn't too crazy. 

Symptoms: Pretty good, starting to get a little more uncomfortable by the end of each day.  The heartburn has started to kick in some days, and I'm back to being pretty tired most of the time.  But all things considered, I really can't complain. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Week 31

Pregnancy Highlights for the Week

How Far Along: 31 weeks



Fruit/Veggie: 4 naval oranges - 16 inches long head to toe and weighs almost 3.3 pounds.

Baby changes: Baby is heading into a growth spurt. She can turn her head from side to side, and her arms, legs, and body are beginning to plump out as needed fat accumulates underneath her skin. She's probably moving a lot, too, so you may have trouble sleeping because your baby's kicks and somersaults keep you up. Take comfort: All this moving is a sign that your baby is active and healthy.

Best Moment this Week: We had a pretty low-key week, but did some work on the nursery.

Gender: Sweet baby girl! Still working on a name.

Movement: She's still active, hasn't run out of space yet.

Food Cravings: Still the same, nothing too exciting.

What I Miss: Running, wine, being able to keep up when I walk with people, clothes fitting.

Sleep: About the same.

What I am looking forward to: Our first baby shower is this weekend!  Can't wait to see everyone there.

Symptoms: Pretty good, starting to get a little more uncomfortable by the end of each day.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Week 30

Pregnancy Highlights for the Week


How Far Along: 30 weeks



Fruit/Veggie: A head of cabbage - 15.7 inches long head to toe and weighs almost 3 pounds.

Baby changes: A pint and a half of amniotic fluid surrounds her, but that volume will decrease as she gets bigger and takes up more room in your uterus. Her eyesight continues to develop, though it's not very keen; even after she's born, she'll keep her eyes closed for a good part of the day. When she does open them, she'll respond to changes in light but will have 20/400 vision — which means she can only make out objects a few inches from her face. (Normal adult vision is 20/20.)

As baby's skin smoothes out, her brain just keeps getting more wrinkled. All those grooves and indentations increase surface area, meaning more room for that oh-so-essential brain tissue. She's also adding some brawn -- her grip is now strong enough to grasp a finger.

Best Moment this Week: I spent the weekend with most of the women in Clint's mom's family - ages 27 to 82.  It's always a fun time, and although I'm a little slower than normal I think I kept up pretty well.  We also had an appointment last week - everything looks good and is right on track. 

Gender: Sweet baby girl! Still working on a name.

Movement: She's still moving around a lot, the nurse had to chase her a little with the machine they use to pick up the heartbeat last week.

Food Cravings: Still the same, nothing too exciting.

What I Miss: Running, wine, being able to keep up when I walk with people, clothes fitting.

Sleep: About the same.

What I am looking forward to: Not much going on this week, which is a good thing.

Symptoms: Same as before, just getting a little more slow and tired.  But really, I feel good and think that I've had a great pregnancy so far!