So, our rainbow baby has arrived, and she’s now almost 3 months old, but better late than never to record the birth story 🙂 From the beginning my envisaged birth was a water birth at home with just my husband and eldest daughter present. I awoke at 4am on the morning of her birth with a knowing feeling that it would be the day. Once again, it was a weekend, so Mr P was at home. We went about our day. Miss E was rather tired, so she went for a nap and we stayed home from church. I lay in bed most of the morning. Around 10:30 am I got the odd surge but they averaged about 2-3 an hour from then. At 11:30 am, I came downstairs to tell Mr P it was time to fill the pool as we would be having the baby that day. He was rather dubious due to the fact I was extremely calm and didn’t seem to be in labour, but he did as instructed. By lunchtime I decided it was the right time to call my reflexologist for a treatment. She arrived around 1:45pm and gave me a treatment. Things were still very chilled out at this point. She left again about 3pm saying to go lie down and rest and she felt by 10pm the baby would be here. After she left, I told Mr P that I didn’t think it was going to take that long and I thought by 7pm baby would be here and Miss E would still be up. I went to lie down as I felt quite tired. Through this time Mr P and Miss E had gone to the shops for something we were out of, sorted our dinner which was cooking and smelling delicious and picked blackberries from the garden. By 4pm, I couldn’t lie down anymore as my body was telling me to stay upright, so I paced around the upstairs listening to some music, swaying back and forth while Miss E and Mr P played in the garden. Mr P came in around 4:40pm to get the rest of dinner ready. I told him I was heading to the shower for some heat therapy as my back was a little painful then. By now the surges had been coming quickly for an hour, so I knew we had hit active labour stage, but everything was still very calm. I came downstairs at 5pm in time for dinner, and Miss E had hurt herself, so I gave her a cuddle. When I set her down again and stood up, I had one very sharp intense pain, and I said to Mr P that it was time for me to get in the pool and to bring me dinner after he and Miss E were finished. So while they ate, I breathed in my essential oils and listened to my music. He brought me my dinner and I was so looking forward to eating that lamb curry, but as soon as I had the plate in my hand the intensity of the contractions increased and they came one on top of another, so i never got to eat more than 3 bites, as every time I tried to eat a mouthful, I’d have to hand everything back to Mr P so I could sway in the water. I gave up in the end and asked him to start the cd again, get more oils in my burner, and also to remain by the pool. Miss E was also there. About 6pm, I had 5 intense surges that made me cry a little and think I couldn’t do anymore without relying on some gas and air and only one person could get me that; and my dreams of my unassisted birth seemed to be slipping away, so, feeling rather defeated, I asked Mr P to call for the midwife. I now know those 5 surges and little cry was my transition phase. While Mr P was on the phone I knew the baby was coming and would be born as I had always envisaged. At 6:16pm, surrounded by the love of her closest family and born into an environment of peace, calm, safety, and familiarity, Miss K entered the world easily weighing a healthy 10 lb 1, and I delivered her and lifted her from the water myself. Nothing can describe the feeling of birthing your child alone and being the first to lay hands on them. It was the most natural experience and just as nature intended. I also gave my firstborn the gift I so wanted to bestow upon her; the gift of seeing firsthand that birth is a natural and normal occurrence, not a medical procedure, and when you focus on the right things, surges are not painful, your body relaxes and births can be an enjoyable and empowering experience. I have thoroughly enjoyed both my births, and I am so thankful to God to have been in much better health this time round and to have learned so much from both births. Hopefully, I can put what I have learned to good use in future. I praise God for the safe arrival of Miss K to our family, and for the wonderful gifts she will bring to our family as she grows and reveals more of who she is.
One thing I am learning and becoming all too aware of as my daughter grows is that motherhood is messy. It’s messy in a literal, physical sense where there are always sticky hand prints around, or toys in the wrong places, or mud trekked in through the house via the soles of little shoes. I am ok with that side of messy. Yeah, I have to clean up the same thing a gazillion times, but still, I can cope with that.
There’s the other side of motherhood that’s messy though and not so easily cleaned up-the emotional side. Ever get those days when everyone just falls apart? Voices rise, tears fall, harsh words come gushing out, doors slam. The mess is nasty, and hard to sort through. It puts cracks in relationships, builds barriers and everything is stressful.
We have had so many of these messy days lately. Developmental changes have brought new challenges for both of us as we try and figure out how to live harmoniously with each other, with our needs and our personalities. Miss E has been fashioned by God’s good hand into a very independent and strong character. All the qualities that are such a difficulty for me right now as her mother, will, one day, stand her in good stead as she ventures off into the world alone. But it’s getting from here to that point that is proving difficult. It’s a fine balancing act and a skilled dance as we figure this whole thing out together, and often we get it all wrong. We fail to understand each other. We fail to communicate with each other in loving ways. We fail to choose loving reactions. Yesterday was one such messy day.
On these messy days, I am thankful for two gifts: GRACE. Grace to try again. Grace to start anew. Grace to change. Rich, abundant grace. Where would we be without it? NATURE. Our happy place. A therapy for the soul. A place we can go together to ease the stresses and rediscover our way on this journey. There is colour therapy given via the flowers and the greenery, music therapy from bird song, the wind, water passing by, raindrops falling. There is peace, time to reflect, time to reconnect. Grace and nature: our balm to soothe away the strife. How do you cope with the messy days of parenting? How do you reconnect with your child?
I am a good bit over the halfway mark now in this pregnancy (if baby decides to come when it has been estimated to arrive). Baby is doing well and growing as expected. The vomiting has mostly stopped now hurrah! I am so thankful, as it means that, this time, unlike with Miss E, I am able to feel excited about the baby inside instead of just wishing away the days until I could be done and feel well again.
I am also thankful that this time around we are able to get osteopathic treatment for my SPD so I can avoid ending up in various braces and walk without the support of crutches. It has made such a difference to my life especially with needing to care for Miss E and ensure that she can still get to see her friends weekly.
My latest issue is the fact that I am not sleeping well at all which is affecting my SVT some days. I either can’t get to sleep due to baby having a party in my womb, my legs being agitated, my brain buzzing, heartburn etc, or I get woken up by something and then I cannot get back to sleep. Exhaustion makes you do weird things like put items in cupboards that should be in the fridge or leave the oven on for hours after you have eaten what you had in there, and I have now officially banned myself from cooking rice until this baby is born as in the last week, I have burned it twice due to being so tired I’ve forgotten it’s even cooking, argh! Oh the joys of the pregnancy journey 🙂
I really cannot believe how fast this pregnancy and year are flying by. How did we get to April already?!?! I have so much to cram into a very short space of time, like ensuring I take Miss E on a few special days out just the two of us now I am feeling somewhat better, getting our house on the market in the next 2 weeks and sold ASAP so we can get moving before baby arrives, and there are a few things I want to make for baby as well. Time, please slow down for just a little while!
Happy New Year, even though it is already 16 days old 🙂 Every new year brings its own set of changes, joys, and challenges. This year our big change is that our family is due to expand. We found out in November that we are expecting a summer rainbow baby! We are thrilled and delighted and Miss E seems very excited about the arrival of “our baby”. So far things with the baby seem well, but, as with Miss E ,I am finding this pregnancy a challenge and taxing on my health. Thankfully this time around I have the help of a homeopath on board which I didn’t have for Miss E, and through the Candida treatment, I have been able to, for the most part, say good bye to the awful Hyperemesis and leave being sick in the first trimester. Makes me wish I’d known I had Candida troubles a long time ago as my pregnancy with Miss E may have been very different. I am, however, still having problems with my heart this time which is rather concerning.
Part way through my pregnancy with Miss E I developed Supraventricular Tachycardia or SVT causing black outs and difficulty breathing and many trips to hospital. They were unsure then whether or not I had always had an irregular heartbeat and the stress of the pregnancy had just exasperated it or whether it was because of the repeated violent vomiting due to the hyperemesis. In any case, they were adamant it would return to normal once Miss E was born, and despite us asking for a referral to a cardiologist more than 6 weeks after she was born because it was still horrendous they said it’d be fine. It never ever went back to “normal” but it became bearable. Now, however, as this pregnancy progresses it is getting worse again with each week that goes by. I have been blessed this time with a midwife who is also a cardiology nurse and has dealt with mothers with SVT in pregnancy so that helps to allay my fears that this time when it gets really bad I have someone who has more understanding! last time when I went to the GP initially about it because I was so concerned, I was told it was a UTI and prescribed antibiotics?!!?!
Anyway, I am hoping that I am blessed with good health for the remaining months of this pregnancy so I can enjoy the last little while of it being just Miss E and me before we welcome this new little one into our lives.
Recently, I have been doing a lot of soul searching, a lot of praying. There have been some areas of our relationship that could be better, areas of your behaviour that seem to have been getting progressively worse, and I had no answers as to how to fix them. There is only one thing to do in such situations and that is to pray for wisdom and understanding. I realised in these times, that my behaviour and feelings have a huge effect on you. I learned that I should first look inward to see if there is anything I need to change before expecting you to change or thinking the issues we are facing are in anyway separated from me. And as I looked inward I saw a lot of stuff that needed to be cleansed from my life, dealt with and shipped out of there. I saw a woman who was filled with resentment for the terrible pregnancy and the fact it so impeded me from bonding with you, resentment for the ill health for months after that stopped me from doing much more than feeding you and caring for your basic needs again hindering bonding, resentment for the fact that just when it looked like your daddy and me were getting a break from all the stress we had gone through from the start of our marriage and could look at reconnecting the pregnancy came and took that away.
I love you with all my heart, I truly do. There was, however, this huge wall to break down. Now that I have faced the problem and am tackling it, our days are much smoother, and that crazy behaviour you have always displayed that drove me near insanity? It’s pretty much gone 🙂 Amazing, huh? I am so so sorry it has taken me 15 months to sort myself out in the inner self. I am sorry this resentment has lived in there further blocking us from having a free and open relationship. I am sorry you have missed out on so much due to the fact I have been so ill. I am sorry that we did not get to connect while you were on the inside. I will never understand why things were how they were, but I cannot change the past. All I can do is ensure the present and future are beautiful as possible. I can leave that past hurt, frustration and resentment behind, walking through the door that leads us into a more loving, gentler way of being together.
Please forgive me for my shortcomings as a woman and as your mother. Please forgive me for the frustration I threw your way due to the fact I had not taken a long hard look inside my own heart and soul. Please forgive me.
I love you, little one. I am thankful for the gift of you in my life. I am thankful for the changes your presence has caused. I am thankful for your love for me. I am thankful for the lessons you teach me, and I will strive all my days to be a better mother for you.
All my love and sincere apologies,
We cannot train our babies not to need us. Whether it’s the middle of the day or the middle of the night, their needs are real and valid, including the simple need for human touch. A ‘trained’ baby may give up on his needs being met, but the need is still there, just not the trust.
This week started really well. Monday was bank holiday and I got 8 loads of laundry washed, dried and sorted. That makes me one happy person! I hate having laundry hanging round the house drying, so fantastic days like Monday are great. Plus, nothing beats the smell of laundry that has been hung out to dry in the fresh air…bliss! We also went car hunting as one of our cars has died.
In the afternoon we had some fun in the sun at home. More on that another day, but here’s a little photo.
Yesterday (as it’s now after 3am on Wednesday) was a good day too. We were up, breakfasted and washed and dressed by 7:30am. In an hour and 15 minutes, I had vacuumed, mopped and cleaned the bathroom (the joys of my routine to keep me focused as, before, this could have taken all day). Miss E went down for a nap again at 9am. I finished up our Abel & Cole order for the week and did a bit of crocheting in the sunshine. Miss E woke up at near 11am and we got ready to take the dogs for a walk. They enjoyed that immensely and were so well behaved. Usually, we have issues of them pulling quite a bit in excitement. Once home, Miss E had a snack and I prepared the sauce for the homemade pasta we were going to have later in the day. Mr P had made the dough the night before, so I just had to run it through the machine. I then set up an invitation to play outside. We were supposed to do arty things and I was just going to set up some paper and crayons etc inside, but as the weather was so nice, we went outside to do “art”. After she was done with that we read some stories outside too.
invitation to whisk up some soapy bubbles and do some mark making with water
concentrating so hard on her mark making, bless her
After our lovely time in the sunshine, we came in and I made our pasta while Miss E took gerbil food out of its bag to place on the shelf above, which of course ended up all over my nicely vacuumed and mopped kitchen floor. Thank goodness for two dogs who clear up pretty much all food stuff! Miss E then had free play inside til it was her bathtime and bedtime. So it all went pretty well, until about 3pm when I started to get the worst headache. Since Friday I have had a sore chest which developed into the starts of a cough by Sunday and yesterday morning I woke up with a pretty bad chest and a cold as well. That has now developed into the flu. Poor Mr P had to go up into the loft to get the desk fan down as I was sweating away in bed. I have since got up as I can hardly breathe lying down. So I am sat aching and sweating and feeling generally miserable on the couch while blogging at 3:30am….that’s a first! Miss E is also having some very unsettled sleep I can hear, so it looks like Wednesday is set to be a very low key day!