Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Pregnancy Update! 32 weeks

I have to say, that I have been feeling better, for nearly 10 days now. WHOOP WHOOP!  (not every day, but I'll take what I can get)  I started taking zantac AND alfalfa tablets, and its has curbed the painful heartburn that has been making me nauseous and keeping me from sleeping.  (It was also messing up my back because I couldn't lay down flat!)  Baby also feels lower, which has to help not squish my stomach, therefore helping heartburn too.  I really don't care whats helping, I'm just glad something is, and I'm not messing it up!
I have gained about 20lbs this pregnancy, which is awesome.  At this point with my first pregnancy I had gained 45-50 lbs.  Everyone tells me I look fabulous, even if I don't feel it.  Of course I'm still dealing with those crazy people that say I look like I'm due tomorrow.  (see picture below)

I feel like we have most everything read for the baby.  Clothes, diapers, room is ready, hospital bag is kind of packed.  We still need burp cloths, a name, we need to install the infant car seat, and you know, gestate for at least another 6 weeks.  
Am I ready for the birth?  I think so?  We have a birth photographer this time, which I am very excited about.  I plan on laboring in the same clothes I did last time, and I have been reading Birthing From Within again to prepare.  
Is it a boy or girl?  I woke up the other day with the mindset that its a boy.  I don't know where that came from, but obviously it can go either way.  Every once in a while it drives me crazy that I don't know, and also that most of my gender "neutral" clothes are boyish, because what else do you buy?!?  I'm still riding on the fact that everyone who has waited to find out says its AH-MAZING.  We'll see.  We'll see.  (I can't imagine baby coming out, and me saying "meh" about the gender, so they might be right)  
Since I only feel decent some of the time, my house is a disaster.  So if anyone wants to come watch kids, clean, mow our lawn, we will not say no.  

Words Hurt

There are some words that bother me to hear when people describe their births.  The first is: "unsuccessful"  I read all the time when someone's birth ends in a repeat cesarean that they had an "unsuccessful VBAC"
Stop and think of all that word implies.

failedineffectivefruitless, profitless, unproductiveabortive
"an unsuccessful attempt"

Its a word we need to use less when describing the birth of our children.  I didn't have an unsuccessful vaginal birth, I had a cesarean birth.

The word "unsuccessful" does not describe the BIRTH of anything.  Birth its self is the emergence of a baby or other young from its mother, the start of life as a physically separate being.  It took me a long time to describe my cesarean as a cesarean birth, don't beat yourself up if you are not there yet either.

The same goes for describing a birth as "successful"  You can have a successful vaginal birth, along with a successful cesarean birth. Success with birth is not defined by a baby exiting your vagina without medication. There are so many components to birth.  So many ways to be proud, to succeed, and to be empowered.

Another word I hate:

A lot of times, when the topic of how you birthed your babies comes up, I'll mention my first was a cesarean. The person I'm talking to will quickly respond "oh, I had all mine natural."

Ugh.  Again, words hurt.

When I think natural, I think organic, untouched.  I do not think of most of the vaginal births you see on tv.  Women with epidurals, synthetic hormones, nurses screaming at them to push while lying flat on their backs.  The definition of "natural" is "existing in or caused by nature; not made or caused by humankind." 

Epidurals are a great tool and option to have.  But they are still an intervention, and not without risk.  They tend to lead to more interventions.  Pitocin is a great tool to have as well.  It is definitely over used, but it does come in handy. 

People are so quick to tell you that cesareans are common and "easy", so how are they more unnatural than the birth I just described?  31.3% of women give birth via cesarean.

I wish that instead of trying to define births, by declaring them "natural or unnatural" or "successful and unsuccessful" that we just support each other in birth.  That we support choices, that we all strive for informed consent, that we help women achieve the empowered birth they deserve instead of tearing women down for making a choice that isn't our #1 choice.  I am also not saying that you need to feel the way I do about these words, just that you know the implications of the words that you use.