I wrote a ‘pregnancy journal’ blog post at 33 weeks but a few things changed in the last 6 weeks of having baby on board so I thought I would write an updated post!
My doctor took me off work about a month before my due date, due to rising blood pressure and swelling. I literally couldn’t fit my feet into any closed toe/closed heel shoes, which is a requirement at my place of work. All I could wear were Birkenstocks and once the weather cooled off my options were even more limited. My Hunter rubber boots were too tight on my calf! So crazy. Plus, my job is one that requires me to be on my feet all day, which only worsened the issue. Once off work, I was able to relax a bit more, nest, and focus on my health and well-being, while preparing for baby. We got the majority of things crossed off our ‘To Do Before Baby Arrives List,’ which also helped reduce some of the stress.
I really made an effort to slow down and enjoy my final weeks with baby inside of me. It is such a special and short period in our lives. I wanted to make memories and document what will likely be my last pregnancy. I never wanted to look back and wish I had been more present in my pregnancy. One of the highlights was spending a day at the spa (courtesy of my husband), getting pampered with a facial, massage, and pedicure. Ahhh bliss.
If you read my pregnancy journal blog post, you might remember that we had some scares early on in the pregnancy, related to being ‘high risk’ for something being wrong with baby. Once we had further testing which showed everything looked fine, I had put the worry out of my mind. I couldn’t spend my whole pregnancy worrying. We continued to go for ultrasounds about every 2 weeks, and everything was progressing as expected. I felt at ease. Then suddenly in the last 2 weeks of my pregnancy, I started worrying again. I’m not sure exactly why. I had a few bad dreams and then it was on my mind. I was ready to meet baby in the flesh and felt that would finally put my worries to rest!
I started to overthink everything and realized I had spent so much time preparing our home for baby- getting the nursery ready and buying baby clothes and products, I had not been focusing on the labour and delivery of baby. Garrett and I had taken a prenatal class during our pregnancy with Bella, and even though that was only 2.5 years ago, somehow I had forgotten everything I had learned (stages of labour, pain management, coping strategies). It was too late to sign up for a full blown prenatal class, so I contacted my friend Jodi The Mama Coach.
Jodi and I work together at the hospital; she is a Registered Nurse, lactation counsellor, and sleep consultant. She offers a variety of services, from sleep coaching, to breastfeeding support, prenatal classes, and infant CPR classes. We had Jodi come into our home for an evening prenatal refresher course. She was super flexible and able to work around our schedules. Jodi and I chatted beforehand to discuss what topics we were wanting to focus on and what areas we already felt comfortable with. This way, Jodi was able to tailor the class specific to our needs. She also offers group rates, which I think would be a fun option to do with another expectant couple. We covered stages of labour, hospital procedures, pain management, coping strategies, and infant CPR. After our class was over, I felt much more prepared for what was to come and able to relax a bit more (my husband likes to say I don’t know how to relax though ;).
Due to pre-eclampsia in my previous pregnancy, I was ordered to monitor my blood pressure throughout my pregnancy this time. It was always on the higher end, but not to the point of requiring medication. At 37 weeks, I felt a bit off- had a headache and a nose bleed, so I took my blood pressure and it was alarmingly high. I contacted my doctor, who told me to go to the hospital. I had to stay overnight to be monitored, but my blood pressure came back down to a normal range on it’s own. Due to my fluctuating blood pressure, my doctor said I would be induced at 39 weeks if I didn’t go into labour before that. This made me extremely nervous because induction of a previous c-section can be risky.
So once 39 weeks approached, I was trying all the things to induce labour (bouncing all the ball, spicy food, pineapple, evening primrose oil, raspberry leaf tea, and the commonly suggested method ;). I really wanted to go into labour naturally, rather than be induced, as I knew I would have a better chance at a successful VBAC that way.
Once 39 weeks arrived, my blood pressure was pretty much the same as it had been, so my doctor agreed to allow me to go a few more days before being induced, provided I go for a urinalysis to check for protein in my urine, which would indicate pre-eclampsia. When those results came back positive, we made a plan for an induction the next day- Tuesday September 25th (my due date was September 27th).
Even though I had 9 months to mentally prepare for this baby, once I knew he was arriving the next day, I suddenly got super nervous! Was I ready? Would everything go ok? So many thoughts were racing through my head.
I’ll be posting my full birth story in the next week, so stay tuned to find out all the details of baby’s delivery! It’s a good one :)
Thanks for reading!