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Susan's Pregnancy Journal

Week 33 ~ February 17, 2004
~ Positive Birth Stories

Back to the midwife this week for a fairly uneventful appointment. I haven't gained any weight in the last two weeks, which isn't surprising as I have absolutely no appetite these days. We talked a bit about how little I am eating and she wasn't too concerned, just reminding me of the importance of keeping my protein intake up while pregnant. I've made more of an effort to do so this week. My diet had been getting progressively worse as my appetite disappeared. Making a meal for myself just seemed like far too much work when I was only going to be able to eat a tiny fraction of it. Pretzels, on the other hand, require very little effort. I stocked up on healthier foods at the store this week, though, in the hopes that I'll eat more yogurt and sandwiches and less buttered toast and crackers.

We also talked more about my contractions. I had a few during the appointment and she was able to feel my uterus during them. She agreed that they were Braxton Hicks and nothing to be too worried over. She pointed out that if I were 37 weeks along, I'd be expecting to have lots of contractions. As it is, I'm measuring at 37 weeks so it's not too surprising that I'd be experiencing similar symptoms.

I go back in two weeks, at which point she'd like me to have yet another ultrasound to monitor growth and fluid levels. After that, she wants me to come in weekly, which really makes it seem like we're entering the final stretch! I've started preparing more for the baby's arrival, but I need to work on labor preparation as well. I read Julie's birth story this week, and I am so deeply envious of her beautiful homebirth! When I got pregnant, I didn't want a homebirth; I thought I'd be more comfortable in a birth center. As it turned out, due to insurance concerns, a hospital birth is my only option. But now I find myself thinking very longingly of laboring and birthing at home with a midwife. I especially wish to recover at home, as I found it impossible to rest or relax in the hospital after giving birth to Susy J. But instead of wishing for what I can't have, I need to concentrate on how to have the best possible experience in a hospital. I found a lot of wonderful advice in this message board archive, and I am committing it all to memory! It helps that I have so much faith in and trust for my midwife; I truly believe that if she recommends an intervention or even a c-section, it will be because we have tried everything else and it is absolutely necessary, not because I'm failing to follow some textbook pattern of labor.

A woman I know had her baby in the middle of the night last night. It sounds like she had a lovely natural labor, lasting less than two hours from start to finish, with only 35 minutes spent at the hospital before the baby appeared. A mutual friend was her doula, and this same friend is going to be my doula or possibly Susy's support person. I'm envious of Hannah already holding her newborn (a little girl named Simone Isadora) but yet I'm content to remain pregnant a little longer. I'm beginning to remember how difficult the first few weeks were with the constant nursing and the hormonal upheaval. The thought of adding in an active preschooler this time does overwhelm me at times. Sam is so easy to care for right now! I'm torn between an overpowering urge to meet him and a deep hesitation to disturb our easy pattern of days. But looking at a photo of Simone sent to me by my friend definitely tips the scales in favor of meeting Sam as soon as he is ready!

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