Friday, October 9, 2009

4 Years, 1 Month, and 17 days...


After 4 years, 1 month and 17 days of trying, I'm thrilled to announce that I'm expecting our third child in March. We are, of course, planning a midwife-assisted homebirth.


Positive Pregnancy Test


So, why did I wait so long to share the news?


Well, at first I didn't know I was pregnant. I'd had pneumonia the entire month of June, preceded by the flu, so the last thing I was expecting after all this time was a positive pregnancy test. I also have extremely irregular cycles, ranging from 25-62 days, so I literally can never count on when I'm officially "late" from month to month. And after many, many negative tests in the past, I avoid testing all all cost unless I truly think that I could indeed be pregnant.


I also wanted to be cautiously optimistic until I was certain that things were developing normally. I didn't want to share the news, only to have to un-share at a later date. We've always been late sharers - not until about 12-14 weeks with both of our other children.


This is also why we also didn't tell our children until about 8 weeks, when my morning sickness became too severe to write off as the flu.


For those who are interested, here's a short recap of the past 4 months:

Wake Up
~ An Hour Later ~
Vomit
~ An Hour Later ~
Vomit
~ An Hour Later ~
Vomit
~ An Hour Later ~
Vomit

...you get the picture.


The first 3 months were a nonstop blur of vomiting, broken capillaries in my face and constant nausea when I wasn't vomiting. It made me very thankful that my other children are older so that it didn't scare them and I was still able to care for them. My husband was the greatest help, taking over meals, handling most of the housework, etc so that I could take care of myself.


I've rarely been sick in all the years we've been married, so this was quite a new experience for us. I couldn't have gotten through it so smoothly without him.


Despite this rough start, I'm still thrilled to be expecting and it has been worth every moment with my head in a bucket to date. It just gets better from here on out and I'm continually excited for each new development that transpires.


Things that Are Different from My Previous Pregnancies


I thought it might be useful to compare and contrast my previous pregnancies, so here's a run-down of the most significant differences to date.


  • Severe Morning Sickness
    • I was not sick a day with my first and only had mild morning sickness with my second. This time around, I wasn't able to keep much of anything down for the first 12 weeks and even passed out on occasion (not a great experience). It started to ease off after about 13 weeks and now it's down to daily nausea, but no vomiting. I still have to be careful about what I eat, drink and smell, but it's completely manageable at this point.
  • Fainting
    • I never came close to passing out before, and was utterly shocked to wake up on the floor when it happened.
  • Braxton-Hicks
    • While I typically start to experience Braxton-Hicks around 16 weeks, this time they were noticeable starting at 14 weeks.
  • Fetal Movement
    • With my first, I felt fetal movement around 14 weeks and by 17 weeks, my husband could watch her moving inside my abdomen. With my second, I had an anterior placenta, so although I felt fetal movement around the same time, they didn't increase in strength until about 17 weeks, and weren't visible until around 18 weeks.

      This time, I first felt fetal movement around 13.5 weeks, but at this time it's still mainly little pokes and prods. I did start feeling more whole-body type movements just yesterday. This makes me suspect another anterior placenta.


Progress Toward Homebirth


The first challenge we faced was finding a midwife. We live in an extremely rural area where there are few options for OBs, let alone midwives. Due to my history of extremely rapid labors, distance was also a factor in selecting a midwife who actually has a chance of reaching us in time.


The first midwife I contacted was unable to accept due to a scheduled vacation right when I was due, with clients both before and after. I know how difficult it can be to get away and completely understand that you can't be everything to everyone all the time; sometimes, you have to say no.


Thus, I was down to a single option - if she couldn't take me, then I would have to search for an underground CPM (my state has a very hostile climate toward homebirth, with or without a CNM in attendance) within range who could attend me.


Luckily, she was willing to accept me. My next appointment is this evening, which I'm eagerly anticipating. At my last appointment, she had two clients who she thought might both have their babies that night, so I'm anxious to see what transpired.


I intend to make regular updates on our progress and preparation toward our homebirth, which will be filmed and shared on GivingBirthNaturally.com, so check back often for updates.


I'm not really showing much yet, but I'll post a picture of my belly-to-date soon.

22 comments:

Kangaroo said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Catherine said...

Thank you so much~

Kelli said...

Congratulations - you must be so excited after such a long wait!

Elyse said...

Congratulations!

Cindy said...

My best to you and your family!

Anonymous said...

Great news. Thanks for sharing!

Beatrice said...

Wow, you're feeling movement already? I was always 20+ weeks before I could feel anything. I always wished it was sooner...

Hope you stay feeling better.

Anonymous said...

With the severe morning sickness this time, could it be twins?

Catherine said...

That's an excellent question~

My husband is a fraternal twin, his twin has twins, my uncle has twins and so forth...so the thought had definitely crossed my mind.


Due to the family history of multiples, and because I'd had very light spotting while I had pneumonia (which could have been implantation bleeding, just spotting, or an actual abnormally-light period due to dehydration) and that I'd had chest x-rays without anyone even asking if I could be pregnant, nor ruling it out (I'd been sick for a month, lost 15 pounds, and was so weak it didn't even cross my mind as a possibility), and the fact that my positive pregnancy test was extremely dark (the positive line appeared after only 10 seconds and is visibly much darker than the control line), I thought in this instance the benefits of an early ultrasound would outweigh the risks, especially to know whether the baby had been exposed to the radiation from the x-rays.


So, at 8 weeks, 3 days, I had an early abdominal ultrasound that showed a single sac and baby. I had not been pregnant at the time of the x-rays, which was a huge relief.


It turns out that I was only 4 weeks, 4 days when I took that test. With my other children, the positive line was extremely faint at that stage, so my best guess is that my HCG levels are just higher with this pregnancy than before.


My husband jokes that it's my age, since it's been 5 years since I was last pregnant. But I'm far from "advanced maternal age" in any case, so I choose to ignore him on that one;-)

Joy said...

Just found your website after looking for ways to naturally induce labor. Congrats on your little miracle!!!

I agree with others- wondering if you're having twins?! That is some severe morning sickness right there! My capillaries in my face break when I vomit, too, and it can look quite scary sometimes. So I know what you mean!

And this is my third pregnancy (due in a week!). I have to attest to the fetal movement. I felt it really early this time 13-14 weeks. I have partial anterior placenta and had full anterior placentas in my two previous full term pregnancies.

Ahhh... I'm long-winded tonight, sorry. Anyway, congrats again!!!

Carolyn Spranger said...

i just came across your website.. congrats. I'm due march 7th with my second.
I love hearing about differences in pregnancies... i felt my son kick at about 14 weeks and everyone told me i was crazy.. by 17 weeks i could feel them on the outside and he was active all day and night. this one i felt at 13 weeks but much different, more mild jabs. at 18 weeks i felt it on the outside but this baby isn't very active yet so i only feel the kicks when i'm really trying.

i look forward to following your website.. i'm planning a water birth if all goes the way i'm hoping. i hear you on the midwife thing, home births are shunned around here and midwifes are hard to come by. although i just moved so i be missing info!

Betsy B. Honest said...

Congratulations! I'm in the final stretch of my third pregnancy and I've enjoyed it, knowing it's my last. I've hit the bloating stage though, which always makes it a wee less glam. I hope you take lots of naps!

DjSiXtRiP said...

Congrats! I'm 19 weeks and 5 days today and I still have the morning sickness as well. I haven't threw up in about 2 weeks because I've been able to get to my Zofran in time hehe. Anyway, I am very interested in giving birth naturally. I know it sounds crazy but I'm more terrified of the epidural than of giving birth!

Jaspenelle said...

How exciting for you and finding a midwife able to accept you too!

I just found your main site looking up lightening. I'm just a couple weeks away from giving birth to my second (midwived homebirth!)

I hope all progresses fantastically for you. I had horrid morning sickness with my first but once that went away the rest of my pregnancy was fantastic.

Clara said...

I think waiting to share is a good idea. I've known people to share right away and as you mentioned, have to unshare later. Congratulatiosn!

Bobby said...

Congratulations. It is not easy deciding on having a baby other than in a hospital. I wish you luck on your mid-wife assisted home birth. This is an exiting time and having your baby at home can be such a different experience than giving birth in the non-personal setting of a hospital. I hope it is a smooth birthing process and turns out to be as special as it sounds.

Clara said...

Seems more women are opting for the completely natural unassisted approach. I think it's a backlash the the clinical approach of the hospitals.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your pregnancy! I realize that you won't deliver in time for our contest but I invite you to share your previous birth stories with us. We've had some discussion lately about natural birth so I hope you'll share your stories with our members. http://community.parents.com/content/Pregnancy_birth_stories/journal/8555768/Enter-the-American-Baby-Birth-Stories-Contest

Bobby said...

Thank you for sharing your observations about how different pregnancies can be. I had a friend tell me if she had her fourth child first, she would have stopped at one. However, I don't believe her. Good luck with the newest member of your family.

Mark said...

Nice, Hearty congratulations. After 4 years of trying you have really succeed in your attempt. Me and wife are trying to have a bay for the last 2 years but still we are not lucky enough

Anonymous said...

Do you think you had HG with this birth? I too am due Mar of 2010, live in rural area and had a hard time finding a midwife to take us!! Our first was a homebirth in FL. Anyway, I had HG with both pregnancies (Hyperemesis Gravidarum) and it is really horrific. Characterized by serious weight loss and constant vomiting and nausea. I took Zofran for it both times, but this pregnancy, I really should have been in the hospital for dehydration in retrospect.

Anonymous said...

Rather nice place you've got here. Thanx for it. I like such topics and anything that is connected to them. I definitely want to read more on that blog soon.

Truly yours



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