Thursday, January 29, 2009

Baby Lew FAQ's

As I sit at home enjoying my 3rd week of pre-baby maternity leave I've had a lot of time to relax, prepare, and enjoy the end of this exciting period of my life. I've loved being pregnant for the last 9 months, and I'm excited to do it again someday- but not too soon!

I thought I'd take a few minutes to answer some of the questions we're asked most often about the pregnancy/birth of our firstborn.

Q: Are you in labor yet?
A: Nope. Not yet.

Q: Do you have any signs of labor yet?
A: My doctor hasn't "checked" me yet, so I'm not sure about the whole dialation/effacement thing yet. I do know that I've been experiencing Braxton Hicks (or as Tom likes to call them, Meyers-Briggs) contractions quite a bit lately. These painless contractions are getting my body all ready for labor. I've been feeling a bit more uncomfortable in the last 2 days, so I'll take that as a positive sign. I've also been napping quite a bit during the daytime after bouts of baking and organizing.

Q: When is Baby Lew actually due?
A: That depends on who you ask. Throughout the course of the pregnancy, we've been given several "official" due dates. These dates include Jan. 23, Jan. 25, Sometime in the last week of Jan., Feb. 2, Feb 5, and Feb. 15. This can be especially confusing for people who thought there was a specific date on which this baby is/was supposed to arrive. Based on our doctor's best guess, use of his little wheel/calculator, ultrasounds, and our own calculations, we expect him sometime in the next week.
We chose Feb. 5 to be our "official" date because it's sort of in the middle of all those dates, and yet is far enough out that we won't feel like he's really late if it's still a week after that. Please pray that this child does not adopt the Honduran laid back approach to time until after he is born.

Q: Does your doctor know what he's doing?
A: I hope so. :) Actually, he's a very experienced baby deliverer- over 3,000 here in La Ceiba! He's pretty laid back about me needing to come in often, but we're scheduled to visit again on Feb. 2. Hopefully we'll have some news then.

Q: How big is this baby?
A: According to, he's about the size of a small watermelon. I would argue for a medium watermelon.

Q: How are you going to get to the hospital?
A: On Tom's bike. He's installed a big basket on the front. It's only a quick 3 mile ride to the hospital. No- really, we'll probably take a taxi if it's between 5am-1am, as there are plenty all around town. If it's the middle of the night, we've got 3 different good friends that are happy to come and get us!

Q: Will you post news on your blog right away?
A: Our intention is to be able to share the good news as soon as we can. We'll be taking our laptop and our cell-phone modem to the hospital. We should be able to post pics and news as soon as we've got some. (Who am I kidding- Tom will be posting pics and news. I will not be blogging at that point)

Q: Do you know about all the "tricks" to make yourself go into labor?
A: As an avid internet junkie these days, I am well aware of all the "tricks" involved. I'm not too interested in eating/drinking any weird concoctions, but I've been taking walks a few times a day. I've been following the advice of my favorite pregnant-lady bulletin board. The ladies on this discussion board are full of ideas about the best ways to make a 39 week pregnant lady go into labor. I'd like to be confident that this little guy will come quickly as soon as he's ready.

Q: Are you scared about how much it's going to hurt?
A: Thanks to Discovery Health, I've seen a number of births and c-sections on tv lately. I think it's a pretty decent dose of reality. I'm bracing myself for whatever comes, but I don't really want to hear anyone else's story about how much it hurt until after the baby is here. Thanks!

Q: Do you actually have a real name picked out?
A: Tom and I are about 93% sure of a name. We'll tell you all once we see the little guy and know for sure. I hope that everyone likes it as much as we do. If you don't like it, please just pretend you do for my sanity's sake. I've heard that new mothers can be pretty emotional.

So that's what I've got. These are the most frequently asked questions, but please comment if you have other questions. I'd be happy to answer! Also, proceeds of bonsai tree sales until the due date will go to support hospital bills. Buy a bonsai today!


Live Simply Love Strongly said...

Pregnancy and birth are such exciting times! I laughed when I read the part about dilation because I always thought that was a joke anyways, so misleading. You can walk around dilated several centimeters for WEEKS, or not be dilated at all and go into labor that night. Every body is different. Everyone told me the pain was going to be unbareable and I wouldn't be able to do it naturally, and that was just not true. Your labor has to do with your body, your comfort level, your relaxation techiniques, etc. The more you stress, the worse it is. The more relaxed, the easier it is. Someone else's experience will be very different from your own, so do what's right for you. My favorite relaxation technique was imagining I was blowing the pain out during each contraction. I was able to labor a long time at home and that helped to be comfortable and doing whatever I wanted. Have you ever heard of 4:1:1? Wait until the contractions are 4 minutes apart, lasting a minute, for 1 hour. Then you are ready to get down to business. Even if you are planning for an epidural, if you put it early on, and lay flat on a bed, it's not real conducive to laboring, and you could end up with more interventions than you would have wished. Anyway, hope that helps. Your body is designed to birth a baby! Hope everything goes well for you all!

my name is Amanda said...

Myers-Briggs! Hahahaha... Whether ENFJ or ISTP, or any other variation, I bet the child of Tom and Karine is going to be a neat little guy. Sounds like you are very informed, Karine, and taking all of this in stride. You have my wishes for as lovely a labor as possible. I personally find everything about being pregnant terrifying, so it's nice to read you've enjoyed the experience!

Laurie said...

Another name came to mind: Maynard. As in John Maynard Keenes. We need another great economist for our times. As nickname, he could be called "May" or "Nard" which are great nicknames for a boy, don't you think?

Honduras Sprout said...

That's a great name, Laurie - lol.

LSLS is right. The more you relax, the easier it will be.

My question is: K, you seem to be read up and watched up on prepared is Tom? I was really worried about this because my husband read nothing and watched nothing. He had to learn to time contractions on the fly in the hospital. But he dealt with things really well regardless.

You can do it! I am so looking forward to hearing of baby Lew's arrival.

Karine and Tom said...

Live Simply Love Strongly- thanks for your words of good advice. I keep telling myself that I am designed to do this, so it should all go smoothly!

Laurie- Thanks for the name suggestion. We'll put that one on the list. :)

Honduras Sprout- you bring up a good point. Our friends gave Tom this really great book called The Birth Partner. I've read a few sections of it and found it to be very informative and full of great techniques. Tom's current plan is to bring it to the hospital and read it while I'm in labor. I keep trying to slip it in his backpack in the mornings before school, but he hasn't had the chance to read it there yet. Perhaps some Sunday reading on the porch will be in order tomorrow!