SylkeWeb – Sylke’s mutterings to herself on an island not so far away

Archive for the 'Pregnancy' Category


Quinces, chillies and eating in general

I've been busy, I made quince jelly! I love that stuff as it is not as sweet as jam or even marmelade. Unfortunately I've got only about three and a half jars… One of them made me laugh as it set so quickly that the jelly got stuck to the lid:

Wonderful quince jelly

We've finally also cut off all the red chillies which now will have to be dried. Here you can see Yannick's chubby fingers holding one for the camera:

Chillies from our garden

The varieties are called 'Ring of fire' and 'Cherry bomb'. Have a guess which one is which. I am wondering whether the few remaining green chillies will also manage to become red or whether I should rather cut them off as well. Any advice?

As I've already mentioned on facebook, Yannick surprised me by suddenly wanting olives on bread. He must have overheard a conversation with my of my friends who is a vegan. I dug out some tapenade (with sundried tomatoes) and ever since that's what Yannick is having at least once a day, usually for breakfast. Until recently he actually wouldn't touch olives at all. Weird world.

Yesterday he surprised me again. At lunch time I was preparing rice with chicken breast in tomato sauce with peas. He usually has the meat and not much else nowadays. Yesterday he said he didn't want chicken and ate copious amounts of rice with tomato sauce and peas! He hadn't touched peas in months! After a while he also had a little chicken but this behaviour was definitely quite different! I wonder is he turning vegetarian? Maybe so, as he keeps asking me what is animal and what is plant: 'are courgettes animals?' 'Now, sweetie, what do you think, you've seen them grow in the garden!'

Giving birth – the big cover up

I've been thinking about this ever since Yannick was born, that somehow half of the giving birth story is never told to the mums to be. Yes, we all know that giving birth can be a VERY painful experience (not always apparently, check out this astounding article), but does anybody really point out to an expecting woman that there are quite a few risks for their health after birth as well when going through giving birth and that the weeks afterwards won't be easy as the body has to heal? Somehow it always stops at the point of pelvic exercises and giving birth, and then when baby is there you are supposed to feel only love for the little one and everything else will be hunkydorey, and you'll forget anyways.

Yeah, right.

OK, I knew about a few things that could happen, like the ripping business and post-natal depression. I knew that contractions would be painful, but at the same time I also knew they would be over at some point and they weren't as bad anyways (in my personal experience). Even giving birth was bearable with gas and air. But I didn't really expect some other stuff. I won't go into any details but if you want to know what could happen take a look at this page. I so wished I had read that beforehand.

The first week I felt like shit, everything hurt, the body didn't work as it should, muscles were weak and the bloody carpal tunnel syndrome still persists to this day. At the same time I had to look after Yannick who was constantly hungry and not sleeping well. This combination really knocked me out. It doesn't help the bonding process either. If somebody would have told me that the first weeks are so very tough (beyond the fact that I had to look after the little one), things would have been better. I can cope better with problems when I set my mind up for them beforehand.

What I felt was pure anger. Anger at how everybody downplays this period of healing and disorientation.

Some weeks on, of course, things have become easier. I wouldn't exchange my little boy for anything in the world and the first horrible weeks after birth are starting to fade away. So, yes, the painful days fade away, but they were there.

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Still waiting

Just a quick update: Baby and I are now five days overdue. Everybody here is impatiently waiting. The little bugger just doesn't want to move. Not surprising really, considering how lazy mum and dad are…!

Register to be notified

Some of you might have noticed that I added a 'log in / register' function a little while ago (in the sidebar to the right). This didn't really serve any purpose so far, I was just playing with WordPress to see how this works. Now with the upcoming birth I was thinking that I could actually use this for those people who would like to get an email notification when baby is born. I already have a list of addresses that I compiled myself, but there might be more people or different addresses to be used. So if you want to make sure you get a mail from Frank in your favourite email account as soon as possible after the event – and I am sure that's before any post will be on this blog – please take a minute and register yourself as a user with a valid email address on this site. Thank you!

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Categories: Pregnancy, Site related   
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Waiting for D-day

OK, it's about another week until the expected due date (20 April). In theory I could go into proper labour any time now during the coming days, but it could also happen a week or two after the date. If it doesn't happen within a week after the date I am sure they will induce me as the medical profession doesn't like a pregnancy to go over 42 weeks. The risks for the child are getting too big.

So far the baby is doing fine, it's still growing and I feel a bit crowded. The baby's heart rate is perfect and it moves enough inside me to still make me cry out by surprise sometimes, especially if it hits something that hurts. Sometimes it stretches so much that it's bum sticks out at the left side and a foot seems to stick out at the right. I like that.

I started experiencing so called Braxton Hicks contractions now, they are like exercises of the womb and move the baby down into the right position. They don't really hurt, all that happens is that my belly goes all tight. However, I do wonder what they feel like for the baby as there will most likely be less space for it during those episodes.

Please don't keep asking about what's going on – you and I will find out soon enough. I've even started to go into hiding on Yahoo as I don't have any real news until it's happening. Once the baby is here I'll do my best to publish something short here and Frank will send out a mail to a mailing list that I've prepared.

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On the last leg

So we are in the last weeks of pregnancy. Things are getting cumbersome.

I'm seriously running out of clothes I can wear when sitting down – even the maternity trousers are starting to cut in below the belly and baby doesn't like that. It starts kicking when that happens. So, feeling a bit frustrated by being fat AND getting beaten up, yesterday I raided Frank's wardrobe and found a pair of combats that are nice and wide! Yippeah!!!

Never mind style at this stage, comfort is most important.

  Frank's combats

And if you are interested you can watch this 10MB movie of my belly with hiccups. There isn't much to see really but I still wanted to record baby movements at least once. Since all other movements can't be caught (the moment you get the camera out they stop), the hiccups were the obvious solution.

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I hate breakfast!

Today I need to rant.

I don't know why but ever since I entered the third trimester of this pregnancy my mornings have become a major chore – that is when I eat something sugary. OK, I do know then, at least partly…

I've been having these daily bouts of feeling partly nauseated and really weak because of a rapid fall in blood pressure happening about 10 minutes to half an hour after breakfast.

During my first trimester I had got into the habit of having something sweet for breakfast. Normally I don't like having anything before noon (apart from some cold milk) and then I'd have savoury food for lunch. Being pregnant I noticed I was a lot more hungry and needed something to eat on a regular schedule, including the mornings. The only way I could get myself to eat something before my normal time was to eat something easy, like cake or cereal. It worked – for a while.

Ever since I am in the UK (shortly after commencing the third trimester), this seems the worst thing I can do. If I have anything sweet (even toast with jam) as a first meal, I can forget about the following one or two hours. I invariably find myself lying on my side on the sofa feeling very sorry for myself. Should I dare to get up and walk around I am incredibly short of breath and feel like fainting. When I am lying down I suffer of major heartburn. Catch 22. I can't win. Trying to outrun this (thinking maybe physical action would help with the blood pressure problem), the other day we went to a supermarket straight after breakfast and all I was doing was huffing and puffing, holding myself on the shopping trolley.

I found out that it doesn't really matter when I am having breakfast. I can be at 7am, just after driving Frank to work or picking him up, or it can be after my second sleeping session at 10 or 11am. Or just after a full night of sleep (on Frank's days off). The nausea bouts would even happen after delaying breakfast to 1pm (simply because I dreaded feeling bad so much).

As different timing didn't help I started experimenting with what I eat. I found that if I eat bread with savoury things I am mostly fine. Having a glass of water first also seems to be a good thing. With savoury food I can drink milk with no problem at all (most people seem to think that it's the milk). But if I should dare to have something sweet or just a glass of fruit juice too early in the day I am down again.

So, I am not only struggling with the fact that I have to eat at times when I don't want to eat, but also have to eat things that I am not keen on. Which means I have to THINK and be SENSIBLE in the mornings. Anybody who knows me also knows that I am not a morning person in the first place and that I am slow on picking up things then. *sigh* In that sense: I can't wait for this pregnancy to be over!!!

Preparation time

Only four to five weeks to go and I am very unhappy. We don't have a nursery!

We have four rooms upstairs, all pretty small to start off with. One is the master bedroom, one Frank's computer room, another one a guest room, and the last one is just a storage room for all of those things that we couldn't get into the garage or the attic. And even if we had enough space, we couldn't decorate any of the rooms as we don't own this house. So, the crib will have to go into our bedroom until we have moved into a new house – later this year hopefully.

Nevertheless, we need to prepare for the baby. Therefore Frank and I have invested in a brand new travel system. Yes, that's what it's called. A three-wheel pushchair with attachable baby seat that can also be used in the car. Should be as sturdy as a jeep.

  Hilde modelling the travel system.
Baby clothes.  

My sister has sent me a huge package with second hand baby clothes, a baby björn, and a breast-feeding pillow. The last item is already greatly appreciated, as it is filled with beans and gives me excellent support when sitting on our 'sofa'. I also bought some second hand baby clothes (and also some new ones) and we should now have everything that we need during the first weeks. I spent a lot of time washing all the baby clothes and when folding them afterwards I invariably have to think of doll clothes. It's so weird.

The crib.  

We got the crib from Nicola and Stanley who moved back to South Africa in December and I have tried to make it look half way cozy. I would like the baby to sleep in a sleeping bag type of thing, so we shouldn't need too many blankets. The crib bale actually came with a mini quilt, which is absolutely useless as you are not supposed to use those with children under twelve months. It even says so on the label.

Categories: On an island not so far away, Pregnancy   
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