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.

Lee and I spent a romantic Valentine’s Day morning at the hospital.  No, we didn’t come home with a baby, but we did get one last peek at the baby that has been growing… and growing … and growing… inside of me.

Today we learnt that BoB’s belly is still large and in charge, but he or she has sneaked in under the radar and has avoided removal by c-section or induction.  At least has avoided the induction for now.   Hanging around too long may still result in an eviction notice.   The magic number they were looking for was an estimated weight of 4kg or 8.8lbs.  BoB just made it at 3.8kg or 8.4lbs.

We also found out that in order to support this blossoming belly, BoB’s got some supermodel length legs.  I really don’t know what the femur length tells you, but the sonographer, midwife and consultant were all far more blown away by that measurement than the belly size.   Apparently BoB is so tall that we’ve been told to forget the 0-3 months clothes and go for the 3-6 months.  This is just after I was coming to terms with the fact that I wasn’t going to be able to squeeze my baby into “newborn” clothes.

The bad news is that we are no closer to knowing when BoB may appear and from what I can tell, this baby is quite comfy where he or she is.  However, the good news outweighs the bad news as our big little baby is healthy and that is the most important part.  But I could have told them that already.  After all, I am the one who feels the kicks and punches all day long.

Oooh and for the first time, I think BoB may have a chance of being a Roberta.  After being convinced that BoB was a BoB and thinking that the 4D scan verified it, today’s baby with its chubby cheeks looked more like a girl.  Then again it was a 2D scan and it was a brief peek.  Mind you, once again, BoB was chewing away.  I have no idea what is in there, but this child seem to eat anything he or she can get their hands on.

Maybe he/she does take after me in some way after all 🙂

Lee and I never really had a first date.  Not a “proper” out for dinner kind of get-to-know-each-other date.  Mind you, have we ever done anything in the normal way?  No.

But Lee pointed out this week that whether BoB arrives early or not, this was our last full weekend alone as a couple as next weekend he’d either be a father, or living with his Mother in Law.  I’d never even thought of it like that.  To be honest, a little panic set in because although I am aware that BoB is not staying inside forever, and I know that the due date is…well, 10 days away now… I keep telling myself we’ve got LOADS of time.   Apparently not.

So last night we decided to have Date Night.  We went to dinner (the 4th restaurant we tried as everywhere was packed) and then to the movies.   As the ultimate Last Weekend Alone Movie, we saw Juno; a film about a 16 year old girl who gets pregnant.

Now we had a great time all night and laughed a lot and I cried a little (at the movie), but one thing was for certain, there was no way that BoB was letting his or her presence go unknown.  During dinner it started out like a West End Show with some high octane dancing going on, and then Braxton Hicks kicked in.  Not ones I couldn’t handle, just ones that made me look awkward every now and then as I tried to mask the Wincing-In-Pain-Face with the Mmm-This-Tastes-Nice-Face.

We went up to the movie and at first all was well.  It was pretty empty and we were comfortable with our space. I knew if I needed to make a toilet break I could escape quickly so I could sit back and relax.  And then… and then the people came.  I have no idea where from, but with 5 minutes before the movie starting the theatre became packed. I had to take my feet off of the arm rest in front of me  (which proved a harmful move as my feet started to swell as I sat there…to the point where I felt like I was wearing the wrong feet.  Luckily I had changed my shoes just before we got into the car) and my speedy escape would now have to be a long drawn out Sorry – Excuse Me – Pardon Me stumble over popcorn and feet.

That’s okay, I would just sit back and watch the movie.  And for the first 15 minutes, that is what I did.  Then, BoB decided he or she wasn’t getting all of the attention and on came the Braxton Hicks.  The most painful and uncomfortable ones I’ve had so far.  I tried to tell myself to calm down and just focus on the movie, that I didn’t want to look like a fool as I stumbled out of the theatre being by far the most pregnant woman in there as this 20 foot 16 year old we were watching seemed to be doing a lot better with her pregnancy than I was.  So I shifted back and forth and up and down in my seat trying to find a position that would lessen the pain and allow my uterus to chill out a bit.

Of course, between squeezings of his or her house around their chubby belly, BoB wanted to dance!   At one point in the movie someone talks to the belly to see if they can feel movement, well I think BoB thought that they were talking to him/her because he/she was going crazy trying to respond.  It provided a brief moment of relief and humour to my suffering.

I kept wanting to run out, but I just knew this couldn’t be the real thing.  I couldn’t be going into labour whilst watching Juno.  Okay, if anyone was going to do it, it would be me, but karma wouldn’t let me suffer an embarrassing fate like that right?

Once the movie was over, Lee helped me waddle to the car, sat patiently whilst I suffered through another contraction and then urged me to check my phone as I was at that point convinced that I must have been going through sympathy labour for Sally.  But there were no messages, so we went on home where Lee ran a warm bath for me and BoB and I tried to figure out a way to actually make it through proper labour when the time comes.   I’ve still not managed to work anything out there.   I just keep telling myself that in actual labour the contractions will actually be doing something and not just practising.  Yeah yeah, practise makes perfect, but I’m tired of the practising.  Let’s either get the real deal under way or allow me to enjoy my last few days (or weeks) of this pregnancy.  PLEASE.

So, as you can tell by the fact that I am writing this, I lived through the night.   I sit here typing in mild discomfort rather than the crazy pain I was in last night.  We’re still trying to keep BoB in until my Mom arrives, and I’m sure this child isn’t going to come easily even then, so I will wince, whimper, moan and cry in frustration until she arrives to whip me into shape and continue to be grateful for having Lee here with me.  His excitement to meet BoB allows for extra patience during my suffering, which is coming in really handy.  Plus he tells me little tidbits about babies in their first days/weeks of life whilst I try and deal with things which takes my mind away from the pain if even for a moment.

Our Date Night might be over,  and it was a really good night, all in all, but what I’ve learnt from it is that we don’t actually need proper dates, because we just really enjoy being around each other whether we are in the kitchen folding laundry, trying to fall asleep at night, just driving in the car or sitting in silence reading magazines or on the computer.  And that, that means so much more than dinner and a movie.  That, is what is going to help get us through the changes to our life that are just around the corner.  And for that, I am grateful.

Now to de-cheese.  Here are some photos taken last night.  Please note that my maternity sweater can barely reach the bottom of my belly now.  There is some serious stretching going on, so BoB better not grow too much more!!

38w3 days in….and they say J-Lo is huge?!  Look again!

38w3d: Nothing but BoB

My sweater blends in with the dark wood of the dresser, so look carefully at where my thumb pokes out to see the true measure of this belly!

38w3d: Get In My Bellah

After seeing the behind shots of me lately, I’ve contemplated walking backward for the rest of this pregnancy!

Where'd BoB Go?

My detachable bump, or so it seems:

38w3d: it's strapped on!

A close up of BoB in his/her house:

38w3d: BoB's House

This week has been, so far, the most trying week of this journey to BoBdom.

I’ve barely been sick, though there was a brief return of The Vomits and a lot of nausea, but the stress levels have been through the roof thanks to incompetent medical professionals that I’ve had the misfortune of being around.

On Monday we had the Your Baby Is Too Big panic from the consultant, Tuesday was Immigration stress that came and went and Wednesday we got a final pre-in person peek at BoB to check how big this baby actually is.  At the scan the lady was really nice and showed us BoB from head to toe, missing out the “surprise” bits below.  It was established that BoB is a Fatty.  At the time we were not sure what that meant.  She wouldn’t tell us much more than “that is a Reasonably Large baby.. not something that causes medical concerns, but jut large” and “I wouldn’t waste too much money on Newborn size clothes, go straight for 0-3 months”.  She said that the midwife would explain more when we saw her that afternoon.

Only my midwife wasn’t there was she.  No, she decided to take a study day and I was left seeing the midwife that had sealed the no Milton Keynes deal the last time she stood in for our midwife.   This time around she was just as crappy.  Didn’t pay attention to the notes on the screen or in the book, told us things we did not ask about and didn’t answer what we did.  Made her mind up about the baby’s size without measuring me or looking at the scan results.  Even when she did, nothing was going to change her mind.  So I left there raging.

Knowing we were going to the hospital yesterday left us with some hope though.  I mean someone has to know what is going on right!?

So we headed off to Banbury to meet the midwife at The Horton.  Because we bring luck wherever we go, the original midwife who was meant to see us had hurt her back and couldn’t be there. BUT, at least she sent her apologies and a super nice midwife in her place.  We spent over an hour with the midwife and a student.  They went over the birth plan with us, pointing out what didn’t make sense or suggesting to add things that might help and even put a copy in my hospital notes.  We were given a private tour of the labour ward and the maternity ward, I was finally weighed, we listened to BoB and went over the ultrasound results.  She confirmed that BoB appears to have a nice pot-belly but that it was nothing to worry about. In fact she made us feel like we were lucky to be having a fatty and said that it is better than a skinny baby and because BoB’s head is dead on average size, it shouldn’t cause any troubles or any worries.

We left there walking on air. I am SO happy that BoB will be coming into the world surrounded by people that actually want to make sure that the birthing experience is as least traumatic as possible for the parents and baby.

One of the things that made me happiest was that I’ve only put on 22lbs.  That may be a lot for some women in pregnancy, but considering my tiny mother put on double that with the boys (I’m not sure about with me) and that I am naturally a fatty like BoB, I am over the moon!  Though I think it was the slimming black shirt and lightweight Crocs!

36+2: Blame it on the baby

It’s getting lower… and lower… thank goodness for maternity jeans with their belly support!

36+2: Sinking ship

BoB’s 36w2d Close Up

36+2: Close Up

MY FAVOURITE – From Behind!!

36+2: There's hope for me yet

There’s hope for my celebrity like transformation to pre-pregnancy size yet!  So long as everyone looks at me from behind!

Somewhere along the way in this pregnancy I’ve become somewhat proactive. It’s hard to notice between my struggle to stay awake and the fact that all of my energy is drained from my body within ten minutes of its arrival. But, when I am awake I do seem to get things done.

My desk at work looks as though no one sits there. All drawers are emptied of personal belongings, and I have even created How To manuals so that the people taking over my job know what they need to do and what they don’t need to do.

So with work under control I’ve decided to focus on my personal life, which at the moment is a slight bit more important. I’ve packed the bags and they are sat by the front door.. all they need is a lift into my car – or Lee’s. Yesterday I managed to book my much needed pregnancy massage and then I decided that I should check to see if the hospital had received the letter from my doctor and whether they needed anything else from me.

That’s when all hell broke loose. This is how it unfolded:

1: I call the hospital, ask if they’ve received the letter – in short: they’ve never heard of me. No method of searching could bring up my details. The Nice Lady said she’d investigate and call me back.

2: I receive a phone call from The Nice Lady who has checked all of the other baby/lady bit departments of the hospital to see if they’ve received the letter by accident – they’ve not heard of me either. She tells me to call my doctor’s office and have them fax a copy of the letter and she’ll start setting me up.

3: I call the doctor’s office and explain the situation – The Not So Nice Lady tells me to call the hospital and have them fax a request for a copy of the letter.

4: I call the hospital and speak to The Nice Lady and tell her what the doctor’s office has said. She’s already not impressed as she’s found out that I am 35+ weeks pregnant and cannot believe that they haven’t sorted this already. She asks me for the doctor’s number and said she was going to call them and sort this out.

5: I call my midwife to tell her that I am completely stressed and tell her everything that is going on. She says not to worry and that she’ll fax them herself when she gets to the office. I tell her that the letter is wrong and says that I need the antenatal care transfered as well, to which she says she’ll alter the letter so that it is correct.

6: I get a call from The Nice Lady who says that she now has the letter and I need to book in to see the consultant. I said that I was confused because I didn’t understand why because it was only the delivery that was going to happen there. She said that “the letter says…”, so I explained that the doctor screwed up the letter and that the midwife was going to correct it and re-send it. She told me to have the midwife call her and they’d sort it all out together.

7: I call the midwife to update her on the situation and she said she will call and not to worry.

8: I get a call from the midwife saying that it has all been sorted. I’m now on the system at the hospital I want, but that they’d be contacting me because I need to “book in” which basically means that everything out my current Green Notes needs to be transferred to a set of Blue Notes and put on their electronic system. So basically I will be carting around two copies of the same information,

9: I get a call from the midwife at the hospital and we arrange for me to go there next Thursday afternoon for this booking in.

I do not think that I stopped to breathe the entire time that this was going on. My phone was ringing off the hook and for a large part of it I was walking around a shopping mall with someone who doesn’t realise that 35 weeks + of baby in my belly does not make well for speed walking. When I got back to the office I was red faced and sweating. One of my coworkers came over and fanned me down.

Guess it is a good thing I used that energy burst to check on things. The pre-pregnant Kirsty would have just sat around wondering rather than actually getting anything done. Hooray for the positive side effects!

Now I just need to book in the leg waxing before Sally’s birthday lunch next Saturday and I will truly be able to chill. Well mostly. I’m now super scared about the Visa situation and hope that everything runs smoothly on Tuesday. Figners, toes, knees and whatever else.. crossed!!!!

Today we made our third IKEA outing in a week.  I’m starting to think that hearing us say all of the product names may turn BoB into a bilingual baby.  Infant Swedish is a hot thing these days.  BoB actually seems to like IKEA because he (or she) starts to wriggle every time we are there.  Not the mad baby in a mosh pit movements I get when I am trying to fall asleep, but nice little wriggles that seem to say “it’s nice here”.  Either that or he or (she) knows the smell of IKEA means soft serve ice cream cones!  And who wouldn’t get excited about 35 p cones of dairy goodness?! (or 65p if you opt for a sugar cone).  I know I do.  In fact I almost wish that I measured the window wrong again and we had to go back to IKEA tomorrow to exchange them.   I’ll have to think of something else.  The “this rug is small, maybe we should buy a second one” excuse didn’t go over too well, and even though the lamp shade doesn’t fit snuggly, apparently the bit we need to correct that is found at Homebase, which is a good store too, but it doesn’t have soft serve ice cream.

We’ve continued work on the nursery (my bum pain went away) and changed the door from left opening to right opening, only to realise that the light switch is on the left side of the door.  Now I’ve got to figure a way to work around that. BoB might be able to handle the dark, but I’m not certain that I won’t wipe out as I try and tip toe into a pitch black room.  We’ll think of something whether we put in a nightlight for me or try and fix a lamp somewhere in there that is easier to get to.  In the meantime we’ll be hanging up the blind and curtains, ordering the glider and then just chilling out awaiting BoB’s arrival (at least in regards to the nursery. I still have the same million other things to do!).

Speaking of BoB’s arrival, I am debating on whether I think this baby is coming early or late.  Deep inside I still think late, but I’ve been trying to convince myself that BoB will be early so when I am caught off guard I am semi-prepared.  If that doesn’t make sense to you, it’s alright… a lot of what I think would only make sense to me and a goldfish.   Right now Lee is guessing early – a girl – and bang on 8lbs.  I’m still going with boy even though Nicole Richie has thrown my by having a girl, and I am still going with at least 9lbs.  Three people at work are convinced I am housing a 6lb baby.  Does this look like the house of a 6 lb baby!?

BoB’s house at 34weeks 4 days:

(please mind the ashy elbows)

The Huckabee (or right) wing of the house…

The Right Wing

A close-up look at the Hillary (or left) Wing

The Hillary Wing

And finally the Alanis One Hand In The Pocket Wing

The left side 34w4d

There’s got to be more than 6 pounds of BoB in there!

This pregnancy has, at some point or another, resulted in me experiencing every emotion known to man.  I’ve been elated, depressed, excited, despondent, angry, wistful, grateful, crushed, etc.

For a while there I was actually afraid that I was going to be forever lost in the negative emotions as they seemed to take over.  Having never imagined having a baby without my Dad there beside me to tell me what I was doing wrong, it has been extremely difficult actually living that out.  When my Dad died, a huge part of my heart died.  With the help of my family (Lee is in line for sainthood) I fought hard to try and find the Kirsten I was before and managed to recover someone who pretty much resembled her.  Not quite the same person, but was as close as it appeared I’d get.

And then I got pregnant… and lost her again.

It is not that I didn’t want to be pregnant.  In fact, I’ve wanted it so badly for a long time.  It’s just that I never realised how hard it would be without my Daddy.  The grief flooded back and wholly consumed me.  Some days I was so upset at myself because no matter how hard I tried to force myself to be excited about the little dude growing in me, I just couldn’t do it.  I could see the bump growing, feel the baby kicking and yet there were times when I would look in the mirror and be shocked to see that I was pregnant.  It was definitely a scary feeling.

But for one of the very few times in my life, and much to the shock of my mother, I was proactive about it.  I knew that I didn’t want to experience such a wonderful time in my life in the way that I was.  You only get to have your first child once.  I know that seems obvious, but it took me a while to get there.  Sure, if Lee and I are lucky enough to give BoB a sister or brother, I’ll experience most of it all over again, but the “firsts” will be gone and we’ll have someone else who keeps us occupied all day, and we won’t have the opportunity to sit there for an hour and try and figure out how to make things work or what the best way is to make the bump dance.  So, I went to my GP and asked for help.  The first one I saw was crap. He told me some complete mumbo jumbo about climbing a mountain one step at a time.  I think my Mom gave him the heads up that I was coming.  I then went to see my midwife who agreed that it was a bunch of crap and referred me to the same drop in place that we send the offenders.  This was out of the question.

So one day I returned to the doctor’s office and actually got to meet the man who is my registered GP.  He actually listened to what I was saying, asked me some questions and said that he would do what he could to get me some proper help before the baby arrived.  I didn’t hold out much hope, but within two weeks I was actually getting the help and was so relieved!  It had taken over a month from the start of my crying until that point, but part of me knew that there was light at the end of the tunnel, even if I couldn’t see it then.

Fast forward just over a month and a half, and I’ve been officially discharged.  Not in the Britney Leaves Cedars-Sinai way, but because I am actually happy again.  Something happened to me when I was in Toronto and although I didn’t feel it then, and I definitely didn’t feel it on the flight back, but once we landed something tripped a switch.  I became more focused, more in control  and started to love every moment of this pregnancy thing.  Okay, not every moment, but does anyone really love Braxton Hicks and a baby’s head in your pelvis whilst you’re on all fours and vomiting?  I didn’t think so.

The main point is that somewhere on that trip, I realised that yes, this sucks not having my Dad around and I will most likely never fully recover the Kirsty I was when he was here, but I have to be strong for me, for Lee and for this baby who has no idea what he or she is in for having a mother like me.  I know that if my Dad was here, he’d love BoB almost as much as Lee and I do (he’d definitely love BoB more than he’d love me!), but since he can’t be here I need to love BoB for him.  A few weeks ago I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to love BoB as much as I should as a mother, never mind loving him or her for someone else.  Now though, with the due date rapidly approaching, I am only afraid that I might love BoB too much.

Some of you know that I wrote my Dad a birthday card this year and actually posted it.  In it I gave him shit like I usually would have, and also asked him for something … and I’m getting him/her very soon.  Now I wasn’t going to push my luck and ask for anything else and definitely didn’t ask my Dad for this GP, but if you could meet him you’d think my Dad handpicked him for me.  He’s so an Astaphan in disguise.  Not many doctor’s would crack a joke with their finger up your bum.  My Dad would though .. and so did my GP.

Anyway, this was meant to be a short post to say that I’m back on track, loving this pregnancy… every nauseous, dizzy, gutwrenching moment…and cannot wait to meet BoB.

Well I can wait… a little longer.  At least until the house is spotless.

As for BoB, we had the midwife today and BoB was all measured up: My belly is measuring 36 weeks and BoB’s engaged!  Our fast little mover!   Oh and apparently BoB has a “healthy bum”.  I am not really sure what that means, but the student midwife that was working with my midwife today was feeling all around my belly and then grabbed the bum and said “there’s a healthy bum”!.   Poor child, from what we’ve seen so far, all BoB has inherited from me are my feet and my backside.  No wonder he/she is getting ready to come out… apparently they think it is my turn to get the shit that I’ve been giving my parents for years.

He/she might be right, but at least I have a while until they can actually put it in words and tell me.

I was having a nice sleep (I think) last night and then I started to have a weird dream where I was being warned “watch out for the two o’clocks”.  I couldn’t figure out what a “two o’clock” was for the life of me.  All of a sudden I woke up and looked at the clock and it was 2.00am …and I was having massive stomach cramps.  It was like New Year’s Day all over again.  Except this time, Lee only woke up for the period between me leaving the bed and getting to the bedroom door.  He did not come to endure the feverish sweats, tears of pain, sounds of BoB doing cannonballs in my belly….

But I survived once again.   I just hope that’s it now until the end of this adventure.  *knock on wood* *cross my fingers, toes and whatever else will help me out here*.

On the upside, Lee returned the powerless electric steriliser today and got one that came with…. you guessed it – a plug!!  Hooray!  So now the plastic contraption that holds the bottles will do more than sit on the counter and hold the bottles.

As for me, the excitement of the steriliser was all I could take.  I’ve not been out of the bedroom much since.  Except to pee. And pee. And pee.  I never had this increased need for peeing at the beginning when everyone else would mention it as a symptom or side effect or however you’d like to class it.  BoB is now making up for it and I think he/she is either using my bladder as a pillow or as a support to do push ups against.  So long as the activity remains on the inside for now, I’ll take the urgent need to pee all day long.  I’m still not ready.   6 weeks and 1 day to go and I am trying to make use of them all.

So.. another photofest is on its way. Not just because I cannot get over how photoshopped my head on my body looks when I am wearing a turtleneck, but since BoB has started his/her decent, the change in my body completely boggles my mind.  In some ways I think I look less pregnant.  In some ways I am shocked that there is actually space between my boobs and my belly.  In a lot of ways, I think I look more like Santa or Jim Carrey in The Grinch with the sagging belly.  Just when I got used to having this mass sticking out in front of me, it decides to change and throw me off all over again.   Just when I get used to this, I may be thrown by BoB being on the outside instead of inside.  Either way, these photos tell me that I need highlights in a bad way!!!  That and I really do like the change pad, even though I swore I’d never buy one.

While I am admitting things…. after I posted the photos of the nursery progress, I realised that I forgot to add the bumpers to the crib!  Now though, we’ve got the sheet and dust ruffle washed and added and bumpers sort of there.  Though we are having technical difficulties with the aquarium and the bumper and haven’t worked that arrangement out properly yet.  Good thing BoB will be chilling in the moses basket for a while.  We have time for my Mom to come and figure things out!

PHOTO TIME!

The crib WITH bumpers:

With Bumpers

Lee gets down to business building a crib-side table…or monitor holder:

Bob Villa who?

And Tada! The Monitor no longer lives IN the crib!

The Nursery - not quite done

Surprise!  I’m not really pregnant….

33w6d: Front on

But I swear I felt something moving…

33w6d: Feeling a little BoB

Ahhh, there he (or she) is!

33w6d: from the side

Here is BoB house getting lower…

33w6d: On the way down

Hrm, perhaps not as small as I thought!

33w6d: Big BoB

And finally, BoB gets a hug.  Or the closest I can get at the moment!

33w6d: BoB cuddle

It is so hard to believe that at any time between now and a month and a half from now, I’ll be able to give BoB (or whatever his or her name will actually be) a hug in person!!!

I’m torn between pure excitement and sheer terror!

Okay, so they’re monkeys, but the important part is that they are there. That’s right, the room is painted, the cotbed and dresser all raring to go, alongside the Nappy Wrapper. Today was a day of far more ups than downs, though we have discovered that there is not room enough for a glider and a chest of drawers, so one has to go. Good thing we have such a massive chest of drawers in the spare room! BoB and I can still rock on glide on in peace. Though we do need to figure out shelving or some other form of storage. For now though we shall focus on the positive!!!

I am not sure how this will work, but I tried to capture the difference between white and Vanilla Mist. The left side is white and the right… well, is obviously Vanilla Mist.

Vanilla in the Mist

Once the tape came down and the floor was mostly cleared up, Lee got to work building BoB’s crib (cotbed). At this point in time he was trying to work out which way the drop rail fit on. He didn’t see the sticker that read “This side facing inward”.

Lee Reads Instructions!

Tada! All done! The man is a master furniture putter togetherer. And it looks GOOD. I must say. He did a great job picking out the paint, but I did just as great picking out the bedding and the crib. I almost want to have a nap on it. Well I do, I just don’t want to break it.

It's all ready!

Here’s a look at the crib and matching dresser! The dresser which was going to be more like a toy receptacle and shall now house sheets, blankets, toys, diapers, and some clothes.

Hogarth Collection

Lee’s favourite part of the room. Scratch that… Lee’s favourite part of the BoB Shopping so far!! The flat monkey!

Monkey!

I do like the monkey, however I am far more partial to his friend… the donkey:

Monkey and Donkey

And just in case BoB decides to spring out of his/her water chamber early, we are ready for the diaper changing! Well as long as he/she waits for the towelling mat to dry first. Dang things that aren’t allowed in dryers!

Nuclear Waste Station

Now to hang some shelves, get the blinds, figure out what curtains to get, the alternate storage, the glider and most importantly… the BoB!

Oh, and a light shade.

The first coat is up (on 98% of the wall – we (read: Lee) are going to build a box to house these pipes that are a pain to paint).  There were a few unexpected surprises; the paint starting to peel off of the wall … the absence of my usual painting stamina (considering I painted that room alone in one day the first time around)… and just the shock that the room still looks tiny even when it is white.  It looks better…brighter…but just as itty bitty.

We are letting this coat dry and then on to coat two!  As we haven’t purchased a final colour for the walls, it would appear that we will not have the room done by 2008.  On the bright side, we should have it done by the end of next weekend and all set to go (minus chest of drawers and glider…which have yet to be ordered).

Once that is done I can focus on my hospital bag which I still have difficulties imagining how I am going to fit everything into a small bag.  Don’t they know me?!  I take 8 pairs of shoes for a one week vacation.  How the hell am I supposed to fit all of my post birth stuff into one tiny carry on rolling suitcase!?!