Week 35 ~ February 5 - 11, 2006
~ Getting Closer
Yay, happy birthday me! Groundhog's Day (Feb. 2) marked my 25th birthday, and I am still celebrating. Though Aaron doesn't quite agree with my logic, the way I see it, this is the last birthday that I get to be the demanding, obnoxious kid, and I intend to live it up! After Charlie's born, I'll settle into my role as a mommy and an adult, but I still have a month, and it's my birthday month at that! Besides, it's only fair that you get the whole week before your birthday, and the whole week after it to rub it into people's faces, and make them be extra nice to you. It's your birthday, it's only once a year! Woohoo, party! Not that I was able to really let loose all that much this year . . . As I am officially now a quarter of a century old. I thought briefly about celebrating with a rousing quarter-life crisis (you know - new car, new haircut, new boyfriend, etc.) but in the end I just had too much to do this week to fit it into the schedule! Plus, I don't know how thrilled Aaron would be at the idea of being replaced by some new hot young stud. And there's that whole tricky problem with me really kind of liking Aaron a lot, and not being sure I can live without him. Oh well, life's tough! In the end, I settled for just the new haircut (albeit a LOT of hair), and a nice dinner with friends and family, then continued on about my diaper-buying business. It's still my birthday week(s), though, which makes me the Princess for the duration of this entry. Hurmph.
I realized after the fact that I completely left out of last week's entry my birthing class's tour of the labour and delivery unit at our hospital. It was a GREAT tour, and Aaron and I are so pleased with everything we saw. Through the class, we are pre-registered so that when the time comes, there won't be any standing around, filling out paperwork. They have valet parking available so we can drop the car off and run. Once admitted, we'll be taken back to our labouring room, which is full of so many amenities that I would have never expected, I was bowled over. Each mommy-to-be has her own nurse that is just for her and the baby, and each nurse can be located and called no matter where they've gone in the building - no nurse hunting for us! There are jacuzzi tubs in the room for us to use as we like, as well as any number of other labouring tools such as the birthing balls to make it easier on the mom. Fold out chair beds for the dad, and ample room for additional family members. Ice chips and popsicles, too! I don't know how much of this is standard, but I was impressed.
After the baby is born, all sorts of cool 007 safety measures go into place. Aaron, Charlie and I all get banded with matching wristbands, so that only we are allowed to take the baby from the nursery. Be you the grandmother, a family friend, etc., you don't get that baby unless you're accompanied by someone with a matching bracelet. Charlie will also be tagged with an electronic monitor that will A.) Let them know exactly where he is in the building at all times, and B.) Automatically lock any exit door that he comes within ten feet of. You have to have a doctor or nurse's clearance code to get him out of there! Comforting, as I could hardly blame him for making a desperate escape attempt after having spent 9 months stuffed inside crazy me. There's also a silent alarm on the monitor that will alert the nursing station if there is any tampering. Woohoo, safety precautions! It's unfortunate that they need to be in place, but with all those Lifetime Original terror movies that have turned me into a paranoid wreck, it makes me feel safer in combating the creeps that want to get my baby!
With the safety measures in place, and once the baby and I are all cleaned up and taken care of, we're taken to our recovery room, where we'll stay for the rest of our time in the hospital. Again, super, super nice rooms. TVs, DVD players, stereo, the works. There's a full sized futon for Aaron to fold out and sleep on so he can stay with me the whole time. We have our own little crib on wheels that we can take strolling, and a glider chair for rockin'. We still have our very own nurse to attend to Charlie and I's every need. They'll take him to the nursery to let us sleep for as long as we need without interruption. They act as our bouncers, and will kick out any guests that we don't have the heart to tell to get lost ourselves. There is a massage therapist in the building that gives a complimentary massage to every mom, and we get warm fresh cookies every afternoon to help us unwind. I get three meals a day (plus dessert!) during my stay from the in-hospital bistro, delivered to my room whenever I want it. Also, there's a way that Aaron can buy vouchers ahead of time for meals, so that he can eat with me without having to go down and pay each time. Plus, from what I've heard, this bistro actually has decent food - no weird hospital meals on a set schedule here! I've been told that the steak and cheesecake are especially delicious, yum yum yum. The other cool thing is every day, once in the morning, and then again in the evening, they offer workshops for new moms to help with breastfeeding, post-partum, or any other problems you're experiencing in caring for your baby. It's cool!
Ok, ok, I'll stop raving about this now. I just feel very lucky that it's looking like our experience with the hospital will be every bit as comfortable and secure as our birthing classes have been. I've never in my life been to a hospital as a patient, so I'm understandably nervous. It was a relief to get to see everything beforehand, and get to meet the nurses - now we know how dedicated and helpful the staff is, and we can relax a little bit now in regards to our stay. I'm even kind of looking forward to it now - room service, our own personal attendant, luxury digs . . . it's like the vacation Aaron and I never got to take last year, ha ha!
Then this week we had our very last class, which was kind of sad. Amy (our instructor) has been so great, I almost wish we could just keep her with us for the rest of this next month! I definitely feel more prepared now for everything that's to come, and am looking forward to our class reunion in May. Two of the couples in class actually gave birth within the past week, so they weren't there for our last meeting, and I'm so jealous! Oh well, soon, soon . . .
We've decided to push our second, barbecue party/shower back to the 25th now, instead of the 18th. I feel a little nervous, because we're starting to get so close to being due, and I don't know how I'll hold up for another party after two more weeks of being pregnant, but you have to do what you have to do. I need a weekend off! We've had so much going on every weekend for awhile now, that I don't feel at all rested when I go back to work every Monday - I'm just completely beat! This weekend we have our First Six Months class on Saturday morning, so no sleeping in again. I'm exhausted, and the prospect of having to get invites addressed and sent out this week for a shower on the 18th was just the final straw. I asked my parents if they would mind us moving it back, as they're hosting it at their house, and as it turns out, that's more convenient for them too. Phew! Finally I'll be getting my much-needed break next weekend, and I intend to do nothing but sleep, sleep, sleep (and eat, be lazy, etc. - all in bed!) Aaaahhhhhhhhh.
Part of the reason I've been so tired lately is that I'm starting to nest a little bit more. I've gone nutso about the nursery, and when I'm not standing in the middle of it mentally planning out every detail (while making Aaron assemble dressers and bouncer chairs and cribs, etc.), I'm out shopping, buying all the things we still need. I have about five master lists of things we need to get, and things we need to do, in my purse or taped up in the nursery itself. Lists are my new best friend - I've never been so well organized in my life (if only I could fight off my sneaking suspicion that this organization of mine is just another manifestation of my complete and total madness)! Trouble is, with all the focus on the baby's room, the rest of the house has really suffered. I don't think it's been this gross since way back in the day, when we hadn't unpacked yet, and Aaron's Hamburger Helper boxes were all over the place. I'm lucky to have saint mom at hand, because she came over earlier this week, and the two of us spent a grueling four hours scrubbing the house from end to end. It's not perfect, but it's 1000 times better, and that's good enough for me. Now the trick is somehow convince Aaron, notorious for being somewhat of a mess, to help keep the place immaculate. Hopefully his need to keep the late-pregnancy nesting insanity in me at bay will be motivation enough.
One last little complaint I have about being this far along (besides the discomfort and exhaustion and the need to clean and make lists), is that I'm still getting BIGGER! Surely he can't have that much more growing to do! Surely I can't grow that much more! My enormous tummy-pocket pants don't even fit right anymore - they're too tight around my belly and cut me off in the middle! I'm starting to get paranoid that Charlie will be born with an elastic waistband imprint across his forehead!
Next Monday is another OB appointment, and they're going to do my physical exam to check my cervix, and to make sure Charlie's turned into position. I'm a little bit nervous because he so much favours the left side of my belly, and it seems to me that the only conceivable position he could be in is completely smashed up in a big lump against that one side. I suppose we'll find out soon enough. Maybe he's upside like he should be, just leaning to the left a little bit . . .
Aaron, who's been at every single appointment I've had since day one, has been excused from Monday's appointment. I figured I'd have mercy on him, and not make him sit through my entire female exam. It's one thing for him to be there when I'm in labour, and there's a baby coming out, but it's quite another when it's just me on the table in an office. He's going to miss out on some prime Stump Dr. Abbott 20 Questions, though. Monday's topics: boobs, episiotomies, and inducing labour, oh my!
And with boobs and episiotomies, I think I'll close this one out. One last thing . . . I realized this week that my entries somehow skipped week 33 . . . whoops! I apologize to anyone who might have been wondering what happened there - some sort of weird Bermuda triangle time warp perhaps. My pregnant weeks change over every Thursday, so as of yesterday (the 9th), I'm at 36, even though this entry is titled, and most of it is regarding week 35. It gets confusing, because I usually post around the beginning of the week, and then end up just a little bit off time-wise. Don't blame me; blame that pesky Dr. Abbott for changing my dates around! However, I'm at 36 weeks as I close out this one, and that sounds good to me - Charlie's almost here!