I’ve had so much to blog about lately and through procrastination and fear of jinxing myself, I went silent instead.

Remember that post I wrote where I was complaining?  Oh, not specific enough?  The one where I moaned about the real estate process in England?  Yeah, that one!  Well it is finally coming to an end.  The house is properly sold with no means of backing out now and we have a closing date.

And we have plane tickets.

One thing I made sure not to mention was the fact that we are not just moving house, but moving country.   Not knowing who reads the blog (and by the comments, it would appear to be 4 of you), I didn’t want anyone who shouldn’t have known to find out before Lee was ready.

Do you know how hard it was for me to not say anything about this?! Not say a peep when the house has been for sale since LAST YEAR April?!  Not mention the short notice viewings, the crazy reasons that people had for not buying it, the fact that we ended up going through three real estate agents before one knew what they were doing?  To not talk about having to circle the block with two hungry toddlers in a stroller 7 or 8 times because the people wouldn’t leave the house? To not talk about yelling at real estate agents while I was in the middle of  a parking lot because they had us leave the house for a viewing, delayed it for over an hour and then never phoned to tell us that they were rescheduling it?!

I’ve had to internalise (read: take it out on Lee only) my fears and anxieties and totally logical flip outs about this huge move.   Our whole life is being packed up and sent on the slow boat to Canada.  No jobs waiting on the other side.  No house (though we will have a roof over our heads thanks to my lovely family) to call our own.  There is a shitload of unknowns for someone who now panics at the thought.

Yeah that’s right; the girl who met a boy on the Internet and left her life in Canada behind is now saying she is afraid of the unknown.  The one who took a Greyhound bus to Kalamazoo, Michigan with her friend and stayed in the middle of bumfuck nowhere with a drunken ex-cop with very little furniture, too many guns and no door on his bathroom is now saying she is scared of not knowing what lies ahead.  The same person who went camping in the mountains in West Virginia with a bunch of people she’d never met and no cell phone reception or much clue as to where she was .. yeah, that’s me.

And then along came the midgets and I don’t want them to be able to start a blog and say “oh the times we had, living in our mini-van and eating pork’n’beans heated via the cigarette lighter,  where swinging from the Holy Shit Handles was our only source of entertainment”.  (note: Get mini-van with dvd player)  Though for a couple of nights at least that would be fun right?  Just like a ‘studio apartment’ version of driving cross country in a Winnebago and who doesn’t want to do that?!

So anyway, my muzzle is off. I can say what I feel like when I feel like it once again and it feels great!!

Plus, getting back to blogging provides endless opportunities to put the packing, cleaning, throwing, selling, and dealing with life on hold.  Just what I need.  Or not.  But just what I’ll do anyway.  Because let’s face it, I’d much rather sit here and ramble on to you guys about nothing than figure out why EBay keeps kicking me out when all I want to do is list a fricking Baby GAP sweater!!

 

For one week three weeks I have given a lot of thought as to how I would update this page. Would I just post a photo and the brief details? Would I post a gruesomely detailed birth story? Would I just redirect this page to one that no longer makes reference to “BoB”?

I’m still nowhere close to making a decision, so I thought I’d combine a few. Alas, with Lee at work I cannot do any redirects because.. I just don’t know how to.

The important thing, is that the waiting is over.

I will now attempt to tell the story in photos. Please be aware that there are some highly unattractive photos of myself, my baby and my food in the hospital. We’ve left out the breastfeeding photos to ensure that you do at some point want to return to check on the progress of the Baby Formerly Known As BoB.

*clears throat*

Around 1.00am GMT on 27th February 2008, Lee and I were rudely awaken from our much needed sleep by some serious vibrations and rumbles. I thought he was having a seizure (no basis for this other than that I had no idea what was going on) until I realised I could hear the deck shaking, and he thought that I was violently shaking him (perhaps there is some basis for that thought, however that is not the point) until he realised my hands were not on him. At that point he jumped out of bed and ran downstairs to answer the door. Perhaps he though King Kong was making a special delivery .. we were not all together sure of the rationale behind his moves/thoughts at that point. After ensuring that no one was trying to break in, get our attention and that the house was still standing, we were wide awake and discussing the possibilities of what it could be.

So instead of sleeping, we watched the news, surfed the net for any news, and basically wasted our last chance for a couple of hours of sleep as we settled back in after 2am and just after 3am I woke up and said “I’m just going to pee, I’ll be back”.

Famous. Last. Words.

I rolled over and realised that this was no normal pee. Whatever it was that was pressing on my bladder wasn’t something that a good old Kegel exercise could hold back. I sprinted for the toilet yelling “I think my water is about to break”. Call me Miss Cleo because before I hit the toilet seat I proved myself right.

Now.. there is something that they don’t show in movies or people forget to tell you when they are recounting their birth horror story… when your water breaks, it doesn’t just do it in one go.. it keeps on and on and on and on.

But I digress. As I sat startled on the toilet wondering a) when the baby would be here b) if we’d make it to the hospital and c) if I was in any way prepared for what was about to happen, Lee called the hospital to update them on the situation. As I was 8 days overdue and the water had broken “spontaneously” they wanted me to come in when the contractions started just to be monitored. They suggested to come in around 9am (or when we felt we should).

9am? They wanted me to go in rush hour? Had they no idea what the ride was like on the day I went for the sweep and that super slow truck was in front of us on the winding country roads?! Crazy fools!

I started getting contractions and Lee and I headed off around 6am… please note the look of complete “happy” on my face as we took the last pregnant photo before leaving for the hospital. Also note the sarcasm in what I write.

In labour 27.2.08

We got to the hospital at 6.45am and met a super nice midwife and I started to relax (in between doing relaxation techniques through the contractions)… until she went off duty and The Midwife From Hell arrived on the scene. I couldn’t have had worse luck. Well I could have, if I was at Milton Keynes General Hospital. Luckily she wanted to spend time with me as much as I wanted to spend time with her. She sent me upstairs to the maternity ward to wait for the contractions to regulate (they were coming in clusters and then stopping).

So upstairs we went and I was so excited at the prospect of having a bed so I could sleep. However, my body was not comfortable in any position. Any position that wasn’t on a toilet, that is. While we were upstairs I had another water breaking experience and unfortunately Lee was in the parking lot on the phone to my mom and I was on the wrong side of the bed to call the midwife. So I waited for someone to come out of the toilet across the hall and asked them to get someone. After we changed out of the soaked clothes and into my “delivery” outfit they decided to start monitoring me again. The contractions were still coming in clusters but they were coming fast and hard when they were coming.

Eleven and half hours in I finally decided to ask if there was anything I could take to help with the pain, and I was given two paracetamol (or Tylenol). I may as well have been given two sugar pills. Actually I wish I had. After a while on the machine they decided that I needed to go back to delivery suite and rolled me back downstairs. When we got there, they told me that I was going to Delivery Room 3. We stopped outside of the door and it was a nice room. Not the pool room I was so hoping for, but it was nice. And then the voice of The Midwife From Hell was heard and it said “I’ve changed my mind, take her to Room 5”.

Of course Room 5 was the oldest and smallest of the delivery rooms, but after so many hours in I was getting excited that it would soon be over.

At least I thought it would.

The nice midwife from upstairs told TMFH that all I’d been given were two paracetamol and that it was not adequate and she left. Then TMFH said “I’ll be back” and she left too. I never saw her again.

In came Zena. I thought she was whatever England’s versions of Candy Stripers are. She looked like she was 18 and was very soft spoken. She explained that as my water had broken so long ago I now had “options”. I could wait it out a bit longer to see what happens naturally or I could be hooked up to the Syntocin to speed things along. And then she mentioned the dreaded word “epidural”.

Before going into the hospital I had prepared a lengthy and detailed birth plan. On that birth plan it states that I did not really want an epidural and only to remind me of the option at the last possible moment.

Well, at that moment she mentioned it to me, it did feel like the last possible moment and I’d heard nothing but horror stories on how harsh the contractions were with The Drip and I wasn’t sure I could survive on the now ancient paracetamol that hadn’t worked when I first took it, never mind at this stage. So when she said “I’ll give you time to think about the options”, I looked at Lee and he looked at me, nothing much was said verbally but we both knew… there was no option! Speed it up and take away the pain!!!

Well. All I can say is that I love epidurals. I love love love love love the person that invented them. Yes, I am a wimp. I don’t care who knows it! But if you were in pain for that long and hadn’t even been offered the Gas and Air, the first thing offered would be most welcome. And I was a whole new person with that little tube in my back.

I looked like the back end of a donkey, but I felt like a million dollars.

Not looking hot

As you can see, my “delivery” outfit was taken away and replaced with a “hospital use only” printed gown. Not in the most flattering colours.

Things actually start to get hazy from here because I’d now been awake way too long without a proper sleep. My Mom and Randy arrived.. to find out that I was nowhere close. Lee and my Mom were taking shifts hanging outside with Randy as I was only allowed to cheerleaders, but eventually the very nice Zena allowed him in and then the three of them took shifts sharing the two chairs by the bed. We watched Masterchef Goes Large and found out that my Mom smells like Zena’s mom and then at 9pm Zena went home…and I was still in labour.

In came Ally and Tammy. Tammy being Zena’s sister. We found that out because my Mom also smells like Tammy’s mom. Things actually livened up at this point. For everyone but me. I was struggling to stay conscious and even when I heard them talking and laughing about me and knew that they were taking unflattering photos, I couldn’t really muster up the energy to tell anyone off.

Time ticked on and things started to happen. It looked like I’d make the 4am deadline (Randy had to take a cab back to the hotel to catch another one to get to the airport to get back to St.Kitts to then be on Calleigh Watch). It didn’t feel like it, but they kept telling me that things were happening. At 1am it was announced that I was 10cm dilated finally.. but we were not going to push for another hour to let the contractions do the work themselves. And then, the contractions stopped. Through the entire labour the only time they could regulate the contractions were when they kept their eye on the IV.

Anyway, at 2am I was told to push. At 2am I was so tired that I couldn’t really be bothered. Even with the maxi pad soaked in cold water on my neck, my Mom and Lee fanning me with barf bowls and Ally pouring water on my face. I was EXHAUSTED. My mom whispered some words of encouragement in my ear and I had something to focus on. It helped a bit, but no one realised the size of The Tiny Human that I was attempting to push out.

After nearly an hour and a quarter of begrudgingly pushing, the bed was lowered, I could no longer see what was going on and then Ally reach up inside and the next thing I knew I could feel a massive emptiness inside.. like a cork being removed from a bottle of champagne. A MASSIVE cork.

I could see this really dark purple being at the bottom of the bed, but was still struggling to wake up and struggling to accept that I had indeed just given birth to this Not So Tiny Human.

So Lee announced “he was born at 3.13am”. That was the first I’d heard of whether it was a boy or girl. I said “oh so it IS a boy?” to which Lee replied “actually, I’m not sure”. So my mom and Lee looked over and I heard my Mom say “yep, he’s a boy!”

He wasn’t pretty whilst we waited for him to pink up. In fact, I kept looking at him and thinking of ET… Lee thought of Gollum from Lord of the Rings. But, he was here, he was healthy and he was ours.

minutes old

Minutes old again

And how could you not love this baby who looked you straight in the eye as if to let you know that “it’s all going to be okay, I’m here now”.

They took him away to be weighed and for Randy to get a chance to see him whilst I was being “repaired” and when they came back I could have passed out all over again when they told us that he weighed 9lbs 10oz!!

I knew he wasn’t small… but I also didn’t think that he was 2 months old!

lounging

My Mom and Randy left at 4am to catch that cab and to get Randy to the airport on time and Lee and I went up to my …PRIVATE ROOM… aww yeah! Lee looked rather refreshed holding his son…

Lee and Noah

And I looked… like I’d just spent minutes shy of 24 hours in labour….

mommy and noah

Within in minutes of getting set up in the room, the two boys in my life decided that they were exhausted and went to sleep. Noah on my left….

Sleepy Noah

And Lee to my right…

Sleepy Lee

Lee then went home to get changed, pick up a few things and try and rest before returning that afternoon.

And I… I ate sausage hotpot with creamed potatoes and cauliflower whilst I tried to digest that this little dude to my left was mine. Not just for an hour or two, but for the rest of our lives.

Hospital Food

All I can say is, that as scary as it is to realise the responsibility before me, it was a much nicer revelation than what the sausage hotpot actually was and tasted like.

..or at least nursery.

And okay, not a whole “new” one, but an almost complete one which has required furniture moving and a little more of the DIY from Lee (with nothing but loving guidance and annoying questions from me).

All that remains to be done, is for three frames to be put up on the wall over the crib (cotbed).

It is getting so close!! If I weren’t scared £$&%less I’d be over excited!!

No matter how real this is becoming, it is hard to believe that within a few weeks or less there will actually be a little baby in this house who will be soothed in the new glider, wear the diapers (nappies) in the basket on the dresser and actually still be there in the morning when we wake up.  The reality is almost overwhelming.  Actually, scratch the almost. It IS overwhelming.

Anyway, before I’m overcome with hormone driven emotional craziness, here are the photos!

The new arrangement of furniture (yes we are going to clear off the window sill!)

Final Destination

The Very Comfy – and Sponge Cleanable – Glider

Rock-a-bye Baby

BoB’s Artwork – thanks to Lee, My Momma and some people online (my contributions are in the set that aren’t up!)

Caribbean Breeze

And no nursery of my child, boy or girl, could be complete without these….

Canucks VS Leafs

Yes, that is a towel rack that we’ve turned into a “wall-less wardrobe”. It is a heck of a lot cheaper and fits in the room!!

After a massive effort this weekend, the nursery is almost complete.  The only things left to do are hang the frames and a shelf and get the glider.  Other than that, it is ready for BoB to move on in.

It has not been easy, and I take my hat off to Lee for persevering as this weekend has thrown as many curveballs as it could at us (more specifically..at Lee).

In order to change the door of the nursery from left opening to right opening, Lee had to chisel, plane, sand and refrain from kicking the door.  It would appear that like most things in our house, the previous owner did a quick and easy job to try and make things look okay.  I guess I cannot blame him for the sloping floors, but I will anyway.  The door took a long time, drained a lot of patience and is finally closing the way we want it to. Yay Lee!   I did undo a few screws, use the cheese grater thing a bit and try my hand at the chisel, but when it comes down to it… it was Lee!

Here he is hard at work on the pesky door!

Lee gets chiseled

Lee goes plane

The door was not the only accomplishment.  BoB’s light is no longer a naked bulb as Lee fitted the lampshade adaptors and the economically priced lampshade is on and looking good.  It’s actually white despite what it looks like in the photo that will be posted below!  (edit: Lee’s just called me in to see the New Improved BoB’s Room and I took the opportunity to take a photo of the lampshade looking white)

And the barenaked window is now home to blinds, a curtain rail and a curtain.  We were going to to with two curtains, but the blinds block out a lot of light and the one curtain covers the entire window when you pull it across.    I’ve kept the other one in case we change our minds, but at the moment we are LOVING BoB’s room, so I might just have one extra curtain for no reason at all.

Once again, 95% of the work was completed by Lee.  I project managed by saying how high to put the curtain rail, how much of the pole to cut off and I even hemmed the curtain which was 1.2 metres longer to start with.  Alright alright, I cheated and used the melty plastic insta-hem thing that came with it, but it involved using an iron which anyone that knows me well will be aware that I am not well versed in doing.  That was the first time this year that I actually used an iron… equalling the amount of times I used it all of last year!

So now, we are going to take a well deserved rest and this evening I shall rope Lee in to helping me pack my hospital bag and repack BoB’s hospital bag.   I’ve already completed my birth plan, complete with side comments like I’d make in person and now we just have to get the rest of the house ready, get my legs waxed and await the arrival!

It’s getting close and I am getting excited.  Scared senseless, but even more excited.

Time to plant my backside on the sofa. Or on the floor near it as not to anger my right bum cheek any further!

The New and Improved And Almost Finished Nursery  ….

Check out how well the blinds match the crib! Yay IKEA!

All Dressed Windows

See, it really is white…

Lampshade

The other direction, with BoB’s fancy laundry basket (Homebase – for all of your wicker basket needs!)

The Other Way

And one tired and relieved Daddy to Be, ready for a nap on the sofa!

Sleepy Lee

My Mom always tells me that I may take the bumpiest or most indirect route to get where I am going, but that I always get there in the end.   Most of the time I try and keep that in mind when things start going astray and I am always careful not to be too optimistic when things start going well.

Okay, not always, but most of the time.

This time isn’t one of them.

I was SO proud of the fact that my couple of hours in the hospital had kicked our asses into gear and that we were making headway on the nursery.  Okay, so the dresser we want is out of stock. No biggie.. we either wait or order a different one.  That bump in the road I had actually anticipated.   Having dashed our plans of a night at a Malmaison hotel (we love them!) and a lovely dinner somewhere after realising that we can barely fit into a bed other than our massive one, my inability to do long car journeys well, we were both working New Year’s Eve and then my hospital trip, we had settled on the idea of staying in and eating ourselves silly… with bouts of finishing off the nursery.  At least the white paint part until we settle and buy the other colour(s).

As we prepared to get things underway, Lee decided to blurt out “I am going for a wee and then I will give you the bad news!”.  Typical man.  After gentle prodding he explained that where some of the paint had started to peel off of the wall before, he noticed there was a little more looking like it wanted to peel.  So I went to take care of it…and in less than half an hour the beautifully white wall looked like this:

Happy New Year

Another view

last look

That little patch of white on the right side of the wall… that is what peeled off last night that we’d already painted over.

So once again my mother was right.  I swear one day I will listen to everything she says.  For now though, I am going to drown my sorrows in mini beef wellingtons, prawn wontons, mini melting chocolate cakes, lemon cheesecake, vol au vents and some good old Canadian Dry.

Happy New Year!!

Let’s hope yours is slightly less labouring.

or at least a bright glow in the nursery.  The only downside is that the upstairs of the house smells like paint, though that may be what aided our sleep last night.

The Before:

The nursery before

Yes, I know that any talent that can produce art like that should be displayed somewhere open to the public for mass consumption, but I am a bit shy about my paintbrush skills!

The During:

Lee gets stuck in
Lee takes the task seriously as always.

30.12.07: Us in the nursery

No SARS here!

The After (at least until we get another colour up there):

BoB gives it the once over

BoB has a nose around the “new” room.

Lee is thrilled to be done for the night!

He cannot believe that it is all over!  But I could. I was absolutely shattered and I’ve discovered that although BoB is quiet when I am active, the slowing down of any activity leads to his/her consumption of whatever adrenaline I had remaining and the Womb Raving begins.  I won’t be shocked if this kid comes out with a toned body from all of the dancing he/she is doing in there!

After the painting we settled into our pyjamas and got on the sofa for The Big Fat Quiz of the Year, during which I believe BoB had a growth spurt.  At least that is what I am telling myself after seeing the latest photos.

32w5d: Hoodies aren't just for Christmas

My Mom was right once again… I am only going to get bigger before the end.  Hopefully it will slow down with 7 weeks and 1 day left.

32w5d: BoB takes over..

32w5d: All about BoB

My belly button even seems to be making a last ditch effort at becoming an outtie.  Lee even saw the bottom of it for the first time yesterday.  However, this morning it has returned to “normal”.  That’s normal for you… not me and my much loved cavernous tummy button.

And on that note, I need to get ready for work. Yay Me. 🙁