Our little one is between 4 and 5 months of age. He is now moving up to solids with squash, carrots, and green beans already being a hit. We do give him some oatmeal and rice cereal, which is also pretty popular, but he does love his vegetables. We plan to introduce fruit a little later on, once he gets a little more used to his vegetables and fortified cereals. I know sweet potatoes are like candy to babies so we plan to introduce it really late.
This is where I am having a problem. How do you introduce solids so he can still get his normal amount of formula? Do you feed him his formula first and then wait an hour to do solids? Do you do a little less formula and then try to add more solids? I know formula is still his man staple of food and that solids are more of an introduction right now, but how do you get him to eat his solids. My son seems to do better later on in the day, but he should be able to do some Oatmeal in the morning.
Anyone out there have any advice? How did you handle this situation? What are your current schedules if you have a child this age? First time parent just needing some help.
First off. I want to apologize to all my followers who are reading these entries. It was brought to my attention last night that Take 4 was hard to read.
I decided this morning to go back and check all of the Poop and Pajama entries and I did find them to be something that wasn’t representative of myself. I have since gone back and re-edited each of them. If you had any trouble getting through those entries feel free to re-visit them. When I write these journal entries for myself I write in a stream of conscious way. I basically just split out what’s in my head onto the page. That can be difficult for anyone other than myself to understand. I hope the entries from here on out get better. They aren’t meant to be polished as steel, but they should be readable. Again, I apologize for sloppy editing on my part.
December 15, 2012
You can tell how much he misses his mom when she is home on the weekends. That is tough on me to witness, but me staying home is what works for us. I’m much better at being home with my son doing the stay at home thing. My wife is better at going to work. She needs that day-to-day structure where I’m much better without it. I don’t know why that is. It just is.
Last night we took our son to Target for the first time. Of course he slept through the whole experience, but at least we ventured out with him. About the only going out we’ve done so far is to church and the church Christmas party. I guess being first time parents we are just scared of doing it. How do you change a diaper in public? How do you keep him calm? There are a lot of how dos that scare the crap out of you when you venture out the first couple of times. We will get better at it.
I guess that’s about it.
December 16, 2012
This morning, with a bang, my parental instincts were called into question. My son sometimes wakes up early and rolls around for a bit before settling and going back to sleep. When I went to check on him he was doing just that. I thought I shouldn’t pick him up because he may settle back to sleep, but for some reason I decided against my instincts. I think it was the way he was moving around. It looked different from what I have seen before. I guess I thought it might be a diaper issue. I couldn’t stand thinking he might be laying there in a wet or dirty diaper so I picked him up. He woke up, of course, and it took me over an hour to get him to go back to sleep. It took two trips upstairs to get formula and several attempts with the binky before he finally crashed out over my shoulder. I put him down to sleep and he woke up on his own about an hour past his normal wake time in the morning.
Was it worth it? For the peace of mind, sure, but there are times when it might be best just to let him wake up naturally. If something is bothering him he will certainly let you know.
I thought of another tip this morning as I was changing him. When you put a diaper on him make sure the edges are pulled out around the openings of the legs. You can do this on him or if he is kicking too hard do it before you put it on. Just lay the diaper out and open it flat. Then work the edges as it lays open. Then you can hook it over him and cover him up. It should go right into place then. Another thing you can do if you have a boy is to place a wash cloth over his area so he doesn’t pee on you.
Well, mid afternoon has arrived. I tell you what. I give my mom and women everywhere who have stayed home to raise their kids, full respect. I bow to you because this is one tough job. Taking care of not only your kid, but the house, dishes, clothes, and dinner as well. Today I managed to clean the kitchen, vacuum, dust, do several loads of laundry, dishes, and take care of my son. I tell you that at 3:15 P.M. I am wiped. Women who stay home I truly respect your job. I still have the bathrooms and the down stairs to clean, which will be on Monday. I also have to cut up the potatoes and get dinner ready while all I want to do is sit here and stare at the wall.
Anyway, that’s not me bragging about what I’ve done today. It’s just me wanting to let you know how tough it is staying at home when the roles are reversed. This morning was probably the toughest I have had all week. Around 8:30 A.M. my son decided to have a blow out (which is, he crapped so much it blew out of his diaper) which we knew was going to happen. He didn’t go at all yesterday (which is actually not a concern if you can believe it) so we knew today was going to be the day, and let me tell you, it was. While I was feeding him I kept smelling something.
I put him down on the changing pad in order to check his diaper. The poop had managed to exit out via one side of it and it was all over his left leg. When I removed the diaper I also found the poop migrating northward covering not only his back region, but his front region as well. The clean up was going to be tough, but then it hit me. My stomach decided now was the time my bowels needed to make their exit (trying not to be too graphic). Here I was all alone with a baby covered in green poop and I had to go so bad it about doubled me over. I cleaned him as fast as I could. I slapped a diaper on him, and tossed the changing pad as well as the footy pajamas into a pile, both of which had poop on them. I grabbed my son, tossed a blanket around him because all he had on now was a diaper, and I placed him in front of the bathroom door on a boppy (a thing that looks like a cushion horse shoe with a cover on it). I could now watch him while I did my thing.
When I thought I was done (not sure I was, but I had my son to think about). I decided to do something I had never done before. That’s right. Give him a bath. This also involved a lot of tactful maneuvering. You can’t just leave him alone and go and draw a bath. You have to put him somewhere safe while you get his bath tub ready. So I put him in the crib, ran the water, filled the tub, stripped him down, and with nerves not made of steel I bathed my son. I even did his hair. I was so proud of myself. My son seemed so happy after wards. Of course I still had to wash the crib sheets, the blanket that was around him, and everything else he had come in contact with when he was unclean. All in all it took me sometime to get it done, but I did it. I even called my wife to tell her because I just felt so good with myself. Since then it has been pretty easy-going. He’s napped and fed well. The diapers so far have remained yellow.
By the way, here’s a tip if you are a new dad. When you get your kid up in the morning you should go ahead and check their diaper if they will let you do it. Sometimes they are screaming and kicking so bad you can’t do anything, but feed them right away. If you can change the diaper though this will help you not to get peed on. I’m not saying you won’t get peed on if you change the diaper, but it will increase your chances of staying dry.
Well, I had my first judgment call today. It came in the afternoon. I had no one to watch my boy when I ran so I had to make a decision. What to do? I don’t know if this is a good or bad thing, but I decided to put my son in his car seat so I could hit the treadmill for about fifteen minutes. This required going out into the garage to do it so I bundled him up and went out to get some exercise. It was in the low fifties outside so I opened the garage door for him and I to get some air. He seemed happy and content as I ran so I think it was okay to do this. Something about it doesn’t feel right, like I’m putting myself over him. If I would have left him in the house crying then I think it would have been an issue or if I had just ignored him and did my thing – then we have problems. I’m pretty sure this one is okay. My boy got some fresh air (which he needs, would have been the same if I took him for a walk) and I got in some exercise. It must have worked because I put him down for his nap and he dropped off pretty quick. Before I took him out to the garage for some fresh air he was wide awake.
That was the big thing for this day. Everything else was pretty much according to plan. Now onto Day 5.
Is something like that okay? Find a safe place for him and watch him while you run on the treadmill or is it putting my needs over his?
Well, so continues my journey. I thought I would post the next couple of entries in my stay at home dad journal.
December 11, 2012
I Finally got a run in today. It wasn’t a great run, but it was a run. I’ll take what I can get. Since my son was born that has been one of the hardest things to do. I have had time to write, to read, to even watch some movies by myself and with my wife, but anything that involves leaving the house has been difficult.
Anyway, how was the day? Again, deceptively smooth. He slept at all of his naps, ate efficiently, and had great play time with me. The diapers weren’t too bad, no major blow outs, a couple of heavy ones, but nothing I couldn’t handle. Having fun with it so far.
December 12, 2012
The monitor woke me up with his noises. It is getting close to 6 A.M. so it should be another hour before he wakes up, at least. Since he’s been sleeping through the night we can usually expect him to wake up between 7 and 7:30 A.M. I have heard that baby’s don’t officially stick to sleeping through the night until after 6 months of age. That’s why he has been so uneven with it. He will go for a week sleeping through the night and then start waking up early again. Then back to sleeping through the night. He’s a baby. It’s what they do. We also think he might be teething early so that could be affecting his sleep as well.
My wife has already left for work and my boy has had two incidents.
The first incident was a wet diaper that leaked out of his diaper and onto me. So that meant not only a change of clothes for him, but a change of clothes for me – all the way down to the boxer shorts.
The second incident was when the poopy diaper hit and it required another change of clothes for him because he had pooped upwards. That’s when he poops into his diaper and instead of just going there and staying it decides to move northward. Those kinds of bowel movements usually go pretty far up his back.
The day concludes and my son has gone to bed wearing his fourth pair of footy pajamas. He had another big blowout sometime this evening while my wife was changing him. Other than that, the day went pretty well. He had a couple of fussy periods, but nothing a good bottle of formula can’t cure.
So that was the next couple of days. I hope you have enjoyed this journey so far. What do you think? Would you want to hear some more? I might start posting my entries from here on out. If I have the time. A lot on my plate as a stay at home dad.
I’ve been working on a book about being a stay at home dad. It is a journey of what it is like to be a stay at home dad for the first full year doing this wonderful and challenging job. Why chronicle just a year? Not sure, it just seemed like a good well-rounded way to do this. I might make this a series of books and just chronicle each year until he goes to school for the first time. I’m honestly not sure just yet what I want to do, but I have enjoyed chronicling my journey. It’s a nice way to have a place to release the thoughts in your head.
I thought I would post up the first entry in this book in order to gauge the interest in it. Would you be willing to read this? Would you want to read this? Does it grab your attention? That sort of thing. I’m purely a fiction writer (mostly horror based) so writing something like this is really out of my comfort zone.
Well, I’ll shut up now. I hope you enjoy it and please let me know what you think. If you want more I can easily start posting excerpts from it.
This first entry starts on the very first day my wife went back to work.
December 10, 2012
Sometime in the 3 to 4 A.M. range, I was woken up by a call for the binky. We’ve learned from others that sometimes when your baby wakes up in the morning he isn’t hungry, he just wants something to suck on. This didn’t start happening until he got closer to 3 months old and after he had started sleeping through the night. When he was younger he did need to be fed when he woke up because of his age, but now it seems he could go either way. When I get up at 3 A.M. I first check his diaper and then try the binky. I stay with him for a while to make sure it works and that he isn’t rejecting it. If he is rejecting it then by all means, I feed him. He is hungry.
My first full day of being a stay at home dad is in the books. Monday Night Football is on and I am finding it hard to sleep for some reason. My creative juices are just flowing.
How was the day? Deceptively smooth. My boy went down for all of his naps rather easily except for the one around lunch. I’m not sure why he was crying so much for that one. No major diaper issues or vomit, no pee on the walls. I managed to get the dishes done, dinner cooked, and most of my laundry done. My wife and I still do our own laundry which is the way we did it before we got married. Tomorrow is another day so onto Day 2. Let’s hope it’s just as smooth.
My son is 8 weeks old today – 2 months on the seventeenth of November.
I just can’t believe how quick he has grown, how quick he is changing, and so many other little things. It is just amazing to watch him grow. He’s already outgrown some of his clothes and he is moving up into the number 2 diapers. Growing so fast.
I have been wondering if any parents reading this have kids that were as babies, so fascinated with lights and fans. My son could lay on his back for hours and just stare at this one light. He can go from being really excited to calm in an instant once he is on the changing pad staring at the light, and it doesn’t even have to be on. I have even found him trying to talk to it. Not sure what he is saying, but it is awfully cute to witness.
In other news, TV related:
Has anyone caught an episode of See Dad Run? It is such a great family show. I can’t believe after all these years Scott Baio still has it.
Here’s an episode to watch:
My wife and I started out just recording the show weekly and then we decided just to record the whole season. We really hate to miss it.
Another show catching my eye that has some family issues going on with it this season is The Walking Dead. Granted, this is by no means family oriented and it shouldn’t be. I am surprised that they allow some of the violence they allow. It’s cable, I know, but it isn’t HBO or Showtime.
Anyway, this year they have introduced a baby into one of the groups and it is going to be interesting to see how they handle this child from week to week. My wife and I found it funny that they gave this newborn (less than a week old) a gigantic bottle of formula. Kids that age have tiny tummies so they don’t require as much to eat at one time until later on in life. It’s funny to me how they get so many things right on this show, but skip over a few obvious little things. Maybe a lot of parents don’t watch this show so the writers don’t think about minor things like this.
In baby news:
I honestly don’t know how to talk about baby wipes, but I have a little knowledge on some brands that have worked for me, as a dad, and I thought I would pass it along.
Wipes that don’t work -Pampers. They are very dry and they don’t absorb anything. You spend most of the time cleaning and re-cleaning because of them. If you get them at baby showers use them, but don’t buy any on your own.
Wipes that somewhat work – Parent’s Choice. They come in their own little containers which is very nice, but it is hard to start them when you open a new pack. Word to the wise, pull out a couple of wipes before you open the diaper and set them to the side for use once the diaper is off. They work well for clean-up, but it is a pain to work with the container.
Wipes that work the best so far – Huggies. Not only do they make great diapers, but wipes as well. I would highly recommend these. Very absorbent and you don’t need as many for clean up.
For dad’s about to have babies. A good way to wipe is to clean off the outside area. Then clean off the genital area (if you have a son, haven’t changed a girl yet). Then clean inside the butt. That should do it.
F.Y.I. : It is up to you to determine how many wipes to use. 2-3 is the number for me.
What a week and those three words believe me are an understatement.
I have had so many things running through my head since the birth of my son on Monday morning that I just want to write some of them down.
Let’s get started.
First off: sleep.
I honestly had no idea how bad it was going to be. I thought I could handle it since I don’t sleep that much, but I am here to tell you this, I was mistaken. The lack of sleep as I write this at 3:20 A.M. is something you just don’t know anything about until you have a newborn to take care. Feedings every two to three hours, crying and soothing, working off of his schedule, and diaper changes. It all adds up to sleeping no more than a few hours in spurts. Wednesday night my wife and I managed to get in a couple of good solid hours of sleep. I’m talking uninterrupted didn’t wake up until it was time to feed him sleep. We were staying at the local hospital birthing center and they have a nursery there. When we needed just a bit of shut-eye we would send him on down there so we could sleep. We didn’t do it that often because we couldn’t stand having him out of the room with us, but we were about to come home so we wanted to get all the sleep we could get while we had the help. I can’t believe how quick you fall into a coma when you do get to put your head down. It is also hard to wake up as well because your body just wants to stay in dream land. When you do finally get up you find yourself just nodding off at random times and your body just tries to shut down any chance it can. You also start hallucinating and seeing things that aren’t there. I even sat up the first night after I swaddled him while my wife slept and just watched him to make sure he was okay. I just couldn’t sleep while he slept. This has gotten better over the last few days, but even now as he rests in his pack and play I keep checking on him. I know he is fine and safe, but I just have to keep making sure.
Second: changing diapers.
So far so good for me. My wife had a c-section so she is recovering from that which means I have to take over on diaper patrol until she heals. It is just so much easier on her if I help out with this part of it. Right now it hasn’t been too bad, but once he starts feeding regularly the diapers are going to become a real challenge. I am glad I have the chance now to get used to it before he really challenges me.
Who knew it was like this? Who knew it was this frustrating to watch? It should be easy, right, wrong. It is supply and demand so starting out you have to work him into a feeding schedule. This will tell the body how much milk to produce. The more he feeds, the more he gets. Sounds simple enough, but let me tell you, as a man, this is hard to watch my wife go through. She just has so many little things she has to do in order to get him to latch on. I’m not going into TMI territory here because I am sure all mothers have to go through this who breast feed. Not only is it hard for her to go through, but my son as well. He is hungry and trying to get his meal, but there just isn’t that much there. He’s crying and she’s trying, but it just doesn’t work instantly. It takes time. They actually have lactation consultants that help you learn how to breast feed. It is just that complicated and difficult a task to learn. Of all the things I have seen so far breast-feeding has to be the most frustrating one of all. I just don’t like seeing my wife and son struggle in such a way.
When we were at the birthing center my son was swaddled with blankets, binding him tight like he was in the womb. It was always perfect when they brought him to us and it looked simple enough to do. You see, I had to break this swaddle in order to change his diaper. That meant I had to re-swaddle him myself and I learned quickly that I stink at swaddling. I was always worried the blankets yes there were two of them would come loose and cause him harm.
I can’t tell you how much we have been blessed with my parents and my wife’s parents being able to help us out in a moments notice. It really does take the pressure off when you just need a nap, a shower, or a bite to eat. Our Douala birthing coach has also been in our corner and her advice is greatly appreciated. I also have to give a shout out to Wake Med Cary’s Birthing Center – awesome place to give birth. They were great in their care, time, and attention.
I know some of this above may make it sound like becoming a parent is a chore to go through, but it really isn’t. Just to see him and to have him in my life makes it all worth it. I can’t tell you how I felt when I heard his first cry in the delivery room or I saw him for the first time. It is just something I will never forget and tonight as I approach what day is this? the end of this great week I know I wouldn’t change a thing. I am hooked on being a dad and I am looking forward to the challenges each day of his life brings.
Well folks the big day is almost upon us. If all goes according to plan the c-section should be on Monday morning. I can’t believe all of our planning and prepping has come down to this. I can’t believe we are so close to welcoming our son into the world. I can’t believe so many things right now. Just keep us in your hearts and prayers as we move on to this next phase of our life. It will be challenging and it will be fun. I honestly can’t wait to get started on it.
Here are some pictures of the nursery and all the stuff we have received. A special thank you goes out to all those who have helped us along the way, either through gifts, support or both. It is appreciated.
By the way. I put together a lot of stuff and this turned out to be the hardest piece of all. I can’t believe what it took to get it assembled.
Your Baby (replace the she for he)
One uncomfortable complaint of late pregnancy is frequent hiccups. No, not you, your baby. Because there is no air around your baby, when she practices breathing, it can cause amniotic fluid to get into her windpipe, resulting in those regularly spaced thumps that make you think you’re carrying a jumping bean in your belly. Other news this week:
The lanugo (an exotic word for soft, downy hair) that used to cover your baby’s body has mostly disappeared, but you may find a bit leftover on the shoulders, forehead and neck. Don’t freak and think you’ve given birth to a monkey: It’ll fall out soon.
The color of baby’s skin is changing from a red-pink hue to a white or blue-pink color (even in babes with dark skin). These changes are due to the amount of fat your little pudger is putting on. The circumference of your baby’s head and abdomen are about the same size now (though you may not be able to tell if your baby’s born with the common cone-shaped head!).
The placenta is lending your Mini antibodies that’ll keep him strong and healthy after birth. That said, it’s still a good idea to invest in that mega-size bottle of hand sanitizer.
At this point your little critter is about 19 to 20 inches long and weights about 7 pounds. That’s just around the size of a large rabbit. What’s up Doc?
Well today (Saturday) we have the fourth and last baby shower before the baby is born. We have been talking about a possible C-Section and yesterday (Friday) we found out that it was necessary. The baby is measuring very large and he is currently sideways so that made our decision with getting the C-Section a lot easier. We really had no choice. It wasn’t a want to or not want to, but a have to. We scheduled it for Monday the 17th of September.
Keep mom to be and baby to be in your hearts and prayers as we move on to this very important date – which I know is one of the biggest of my lifetime and mom to be’s lifetime.
That’s it for the week.
Your baby’s intestines have accumulated a considerable amount of meconium (the code name for black, tar-like baby poop), which is usually eliminated shortly after birth and gives you your first experience with the 100-wipe diaper change. Here’s what else is up:
Your baby might just scratch herself in the womb as the fingernails have grown over the fingertips now. Resist painting them hot pink when she arrives.
Baby’s lungs continue to mature and her brain and nerve function are working better every day. The latter two will continue to mature until Junior is a teenager, at which point she’ll know it all (or at least she’ll think she does).
Your baby weighs about 6½ pounds and is around 19 or 20 inches long—as long as a duffle bag (in case you needed an excuse to go shopping for a new bag for your labor gear).
The weeks keep rolling on towards the birth and it seems like each week is starting to get tougher. We were cruising right along until about Week 34 to Week 35 and then it all just seemed to change overnight.
This week we went to the doctor twice – once for another growth ultra sound and then just a routine check up. Both turned out great – baby to be and mom to be are both healthy.
Mom to be is now working from home and keeping her feet up while she battles swelling. Epsom salt baths, elevation, and walking to get out the stiffness seem to be helping. I don’t think there is much that can be done about the swelling. It is a part of it.
Any mothers reading this that can offer help or advice – please leave us some information on what helped you get through your later stages of pregnancy.
On another side of things – not baby related, but happening this week. We decided to do some remodeling on our kitchen, purely by accident.
We’ve had a leaky faucet for a while and the only way to fix the leak was to turn the handle to the left. This was eventually going to catch up with us and on Wednesday it did. The handle broke on the faucet and we were forced to use pliers to turn the water on and off. I went out and bought a new faucet that evening and then waited till Thursday to install it. I called in my father in law who is really good at installing this stuff. I’m not a great handy man, but I am getting better at it.
Anyway. Thursday arrived and me and my father in law went to work on the faucet. We did all we were supposed to do in order for it to lift right off so we could install the new one. For some reason it was hung up. After some careful searching we found the culprit.
There was a nut holding the faucet to the sink that was impossible to get to because it looked like this nut was screwed in before the sink was installed. So we undid the bolts holding the sink in place and pulled the whole sink out of the counter. We unscrewed the nut, replaced the faucet, and put the sink back in its hole. Done, easy enough – right!
We decided to go ahead and put in a new sink because this one we currently had was old and well used and we wanted a deeper sink for the kitchen. My father in law ran down to Lowe’s to find us a new sink.
Okay, so new sink, put the faucet on, fix everything in place – done, right? Wrong again.
From this point forward it just went downhill. The pipes didn’t fit back in place because the drainage areas on the sink were further back than they were in the old sink. The sink was also deeper so that caused issues. The water lines were to short to reach the new sink. The list just went on.
When Thursday ended we had our sink in, but nothing was hooked up. We got water from the bathroom and drank bottled water until Friday.
On Friday my father in law came back and he took out all the old plumbing under the sink and re built it himself so it would fit the new sink. New water lines were put in place which were longer and we now have everything back to the way it was. I want to give a special thinks to my father in law for taking the time to do this. He really impressed me with all he knows about home repair. I would have been lost without him.
It is funny that this year it seems like I have gotten a crash course in what it takes to be a parent and a dad from both sets of parents – mine and my wife’s. Knowledge that will help me become a well-rounded father.
Here’s a video to give you an idea of what our house looked like before and after the kitchen sink remodel.
Okay, Week 37.
Huge news this week: You’re carrying a full-term baby! If you were to go into labor today, all systems would be a go. Woohoo! Even though you can’t wait for the little bambino to quite literally rear his head, keep in mind that your bun benefits from every day in the oven. Other ticker-tape-worthy developments:
Baby’s growth slows down dramatically this week, which is great news for your birth canal. His bones are still soft and pliable and will solidify after he’s born. More great news for your birth canal.
So if he’s all cooked and ready to go, what the heck is he still doing in there?! He’s busy practicing for “life on the outside,” working on his breathing, sucking, sleeping, gazing and peeing abilities. The only thing he can’t practice yet is his ability to scream at the top of his lungs when he’s hungry—but he’ll do plenty of that in a few weeks.
At this point babies vary in size, but the average length is between 19 and 20 inches and most babies weigh approximately 6 pounds. About the size of an average largemouth bass caught in Minnesota by your cousin Earl.
Long week – two words put together never meant so much.
First off. We started off the week one car short. I had to take mom to be to work each morning while we waited to get her car fixed. By Friday the car should be fixed (I am writing this as of Thursday).
Then when we went to the doctor for mom to be’s checkup we were told on Tuesday that we needed to come back by Thursday in order to get a growth ultra-sound. Mom to be was retaining a lot of water so they wanted to make sure baby to be was okay. So from Tuesday till Thursday we were in a holding pattern and waiting to see why she was retaining so much water. The mid-wife also put mom to be on bed rest for a couple of days to see if that would help. It did and after our second checkup we learned that everything was pretty much okay, for now. Baby to be is a big one – they weighed him at about seven and a half pounds (of course ultra-sounds are not always accurate, he could be this weight or smaller). That’s at 35 weeks which I am finding out (being a man we don’t know these things) is big for a baby at this stage in the pregnancy. Another check up next week, and another day of bed rest for mom to be on Friday.
Tonight (Thursday) we are scheduled for a tour of the hospital so we can get a feel for everything we may need the day of the birth. That should help a lot.
Then on Saturday and Sunday we have what they are calling intensive child-birth classes. Saturday goes from 9-4 and Sunday 9-1.
That’s it so far. We are hoping and praying all goes well for the rest of the pregnancy.
As of writing the information above I have since been to the Birthing Center and the first day of the intensive child-birth classes.
First off, the birthing center is super nice. The rooms are almost like hotel rooms with beds that can be contorted to fit any kind of pregnancy position, just so mom to be can deliver as comfortable as possible. They have all the amenities there as well, including a birthing ball, birthing tub, a refrigerator in the room for cold snacks, and various other things that will help with the before and after birthing process.
The first day of intensive child-birth classes went off exceptionally well with a lot of useful information for dad and mom to be. We thought we were well versed, but we learned even more stuff on Saturday. On Sunday we will be there for a shorter period. So the day won’t be so tough. Mom to be is currently resting as I write this after Saturday’s session.
I’ve included two things this week from the 3D pregnancy website. The first is what mom to be’s body is going through – Your Body and the second is all about baby to be – Your Baby. I thought this might give you a little more insight into what is going on with mom and baby to be.
As Patrick Swayze put it, “Nobody puts baby in a corner!” Doubly true for your little tenant. Your baby has pretty much taken over your entire torso by now. Over the past few months, he’s squished and mushed all of your organs out of the way. Any day now, he’ll make a final move and shove your heart up and to the left to make more room for himself. (See, he’s got your heart in his hands already.)
Before all this pregnancy stuff, your uterus was a small ball the size of your fist and was tucked neatly away behind your pelvis. Today your uterus is the size of a small watermelon and reaches all the way up to your ribs.
At this point in your pregnancy all the blood has gone to your belly … literally. Nearly 1/6 of your body’s total blood volume is chugging around in the vessels in your uterus. So that’s why you feel so lightheaded all the time!
Starting this week you’ll visit your OB or midwife weekly. Every time you go you’ll probably beg her to tell you when she thinks your babe is coming. Unfortunately, her guess is about as good as yours. Even if you’re dilated, there’s no telling exactly when baby will make his appearance (unless you have a scheduled C-section, of course.)
This week the final touches are being added to your mini-masterpiece and most of his development is going to packing on the pounds. While baby’s movements may be becoming less jerky, he may do his final somersault in the womb soon—to put himself into the head-down position for birth. Other fascinating facts:
Your little Karate Kid can’t quite pack the punch he used to due to the limited space inside the womb these days. You’re likely to feel more wiggles, stretches and rolls than kicks and jabs. The extra layer of fat your baby is adding will create those cute dimples on your baby’s elbows and knees. His liver has begun processing his waste products, so you know which organ to thank when he has his first blowout up the back of his onesie.
Baby’s nails are growing so long they may curl over the tips of his tiny fingers and toes before he sees a pair of clippers. He’ll be in serious need of a mani-pedi once he’s born (as will you).
Your baby is now about 5½ pounds and over 18 inches long—about the size of one of those price-club sheet cakes.
Having a baby prematurely is frightening, no doubt. But here’s a reason to relax: Due to the impressive advancements of medical technology, if your baby is born this week, she’d have a 9 out of 10 chance of survival, which is seriously great news. Other awesome developments:
Baby’s brain can now control her breathing and body temperature. She can also cough, and her sucking abilities have been perfected. Look out, boobs!
Your Mini’s skin is looking less wrinkled as she packs on the pounds. She’s starting to look more like a Pampers model and less like a Depends model. She’s now beefing up on the energizing and insulating white fat she’ll be born with (unfortunately, white fat is not energizing and insulating for adults!).
And speaking of energy, your little Energizer Bunny is on fire these days. You’re sure to feel your share of kicks, punches and elbows, especially when you’re lying down. You might want to start keeping a kick chart to monitor your baby’s movements, and also to later show your 13-year-old child what you endured for him or her. Ask your doctor how to count kicks and how often you should do it.
This week your baby is a little over 15 inches long—about the length of a loaf of bread—and weighs about 3 pounds, as much as a Macbook Air laptop.
There’s not a lot going on this week with mom and baby. We have crossed into the third trimester so all we need to do now is keep both of them healthy. This is really the growing and showing stage. Everything is supposed to increase over the weeks up until the birth.
I have started to learn a lot more about what goes into a delivery. It isn’t as simple as the movies and TV shows make it out to be. There are a lot of things to decide on, not only for the mother, but for the father as well.
We did get away for a small Babymoon this week to Ocean Isle Beach, N.C. It was a nice chance to get away from the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life. A nice way for me and mom to be to have a few days just to reconnect. The trip was fun, a bit noisier than we would have liked, but overall it was nice to get back to the ocean. Technically this is our first of two Babymoons before the baby arrives. The second one will be a trip to the mountains in August.
Director Abby Epstein’s controversial documentary takes a hard look at America’s maternity care system, juxtaposing hospital deliveries against the growing popularity of at-home, natural childbirths that some expectant parents are opting for. Former talk show host Ricki Lake was inspired to produce this compelling exposé after a dissatisfying birthing experience with her first child left her with many unanswered questions.
via Netflix: The Business of Being Born
I was shocked when I watched this with my wife. I had no idea the world of birthing a child could be so complicated. I had no idea there was so much stuff going on behind the scenes that may or may not be necessary. From a guy’s point of view or the uneducated eye – here’s the way it goes:
Woman goes into hospital.
Doctor does what he or she can to deliver the baby.
That’s what TV shows and movies have taught us through the years. The woman is flat on her back and the doctor is giving her whatever they deem necessary at the time of the delivery.
After watching this movie a lot of that thought process has changed. I had no idea (or didn’t want to believe) that doctors could be so cold to a woman in labor. That they would worry more about getting home than they would be about getting the woman to have a healthy baby. Aren’t doctors supposed to take care of us? We have to trust them because they usually know what’s right or am I misguided in thinking this.
The topics explored here are topics that all women should have the option of knowing about. It is like there is this secret under layer to pregnancy that the hospitals and insurance companies have enough money to keep quiet. It’s disgusting to see money take over in such a way.
This was a solid documentary that everyone should see whether you are pregnant, not pregnant, thinking of being pregnant, or you are just someone who needs an eye opener. Is the mid wife way the best? It seems to be working throughout the world, but not here in America. Watch this movie and then decide for yourself.
We have started talking about birth plans and how does she want to deliver? What mom to be is found is that a natural birth is actually the better way to go. The epidural way has a lot more side effects and issues with it that the movies and all those TV shows don’t tell you about. People are always screaming for the juice and they get it so easily when it comes to fiction, but in real life its a lot more complicated. There are a lot more issues that can come out of it. Decisions, decisions, decisions. None of them are easy to make, but they have to be made.
Other than that all is well for mom to be and baby to be. He’s been kicking and punching and doing whatever it is he can inside of her. Pretty cool stuff.
Deep breath! Air sacks are developing in your baby’s lungs, which means it just might be possible for your baby to take a breath at the end of this week. The air sacks (technically called alveoli) will continue to grow for the next nine years. The membrane that keeps the alveoli separate from the blood vessels is now thin enough to allow for that oxygen–carbon dioxide exchange we call breathing. Other highlights this week:
The retina completes the development of its normal layers this week—all the better to see you with. Well not you, per se, because her eyes are still sealed shut and it’s really dark in there, but your baby’s eyes are now fully developed.
Brainwaves for the auditory and visual systems are detectable in baby’s noggin this week. That means baby’s brain is registering things like sound and light. She can’t understand what any of it means yet, but she’s on track to comprehend an entire episode of Blue’s Clues in no time!
As hearing continues to develop, your baby will start to recognize your voice. One hint that your karaoke rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody” is not the best would be when the baby starts banging on your gut. Your bambino will also start to recognize your partner’s voice. He may feel silly talking to your stomach, but assure him that somebody other than you is definitely listening. Research has shown that newborns actually recognize familiar sounds after birth. Proof that your baby has been paying attention all along.
Break out the sparkling apple juice—baby has now completed two-thirds of her stay in Hotel Womb. Your baby is about 1 2/3 pounds and is 14 inches long head-to-heel, or about the length of a burp cloth (otherwise known as your primary wardrobe accessory for the next several months).
Get ready for pat-a-cake! Baby’s hands are now fully developed and he spends most of his awake time groping around in the darkness of your uterus. Brain and nerve endings are developed enough now so that your baby can feel the sensation of touch. That doesn’t mean he can feel it when his father pokes your stomach, however, so tell him to knock it off. Other highlights include:Your baby’s arms and legs have grown to almost the proportions they will be at birth, which is still sort of short. So don’t be alarmed when your newborn’s arms barely clear his waist. Baby’s nostrils, which have been plugged up until now, clear out (like he’s taken a super-dose of Sudafed) and he can practice breathing through the nose. The structures of your baby’s spine are now made up of 150 joints, 33 rings and some 1,000 ligaments. Can you believe you’re growing something that complicated inside of you?
The capillaries, the teeniest blood vessels, are now forming in your baby’s body, giving his formerly translucent skin a pink glow. The blood vessels in the lungs also develop this week. You’ll see how well that worked out when your baby gives those lungs a workout while you’re on line at the bank in a few months.
Your baby weighs about a pound and a half and is about 13½ inches long—roughly the length of one of those recorders you played in elementary school music class. Who’s up for a round of “Hot Cross Buns?”
There hasn’t been a lot going on this week. Mom to be is settling in to the pregnancy and the baby is growing and moving. I’m not sure if he is in there doing little acrobatic tricks or kicking or what, but he’s active. I have actually been able to sit and put my hands on her belly and feel him move that way. He gets so active sometimes that you can even see her skin move. Crazy stuff to witness and certainly something I will always remember about this pregnancy. You just don’t see stuff like that every day.
Happy Mother’s Day to all mother’s reading this post. Here’s a little poem I wrote to help celebrate the day.
How to describe a mom?
it may be too hard to do,
without leaving out,
too many things,
that are true.
For a mom is a blessing,
a true gift from God,
her patience and virtue,
you could never prod?
We are up to Week 21 on this side of the screen. That is just over half way. I can’t believe it.
There hasn’t been a lot to comment on this week when it comes to mom to be and baby. The biggest thing has to be the movement. Mom to be is starting feel the baby moving around a lot more inside. It seems like humus of all things is a big catalyst to get him moving. We found out pizza does it as well. That’s my boy. Not even out of the womb and he already loves pizza.
All in all things are getting back to a sense of normal around here. I think now it is time for growing and showing with the occasional doctor’s check up to make sure everything is okay.
Chances are good you’re feeling someone performing a round-off back handspring in your uterus by now. Is there any other feeling this cool? Other highlights this week:
By now your baby looks like a mini-version of what she’ll look like when she’s born. All her facial features are formed and hair is growing on her head. She’s even acting like a baby and will occasionally suck her thumb or yawn. Aww …
Baby’s heartbeat is getting stronger and can be heard using a good old-fashioned stethoscope. Ask for a listen at your next prenatal visit! By 21 weeks, fetal bone marrow starts making blood cells—previously done by the liver and spleen. This may not sound that exciting, but it’s good news.
The amniotic fluid that has been cushioning your little bean now serves another purpose: Your baby uses it to “practice” chowing down. Yes, it sounds gross (as many aspects of pregnancy do), but it’s an important step for your baby toward being able to chow down in the real world. Your baby has been swallowing amniotic fluid for a while now, but now the intestines are finally developed enough that she’s absorbing small amounts of sugars from it. And let’s face it, being able to effectively digest sugar is important at every stage of life.
Your baby now weighs between 10 and 11 ounces and is approximately 7 inches long—the size of a delicious, cold, frothy bottle of root beer. Float anyone?
It appears things are starting to get better for mom to be. The headaches are starting to be less and less and a lot of the stuff that goes along with the early parts of the pregnancy are starting to pass.
Sure, there are a few moments that come out of the blue. Friday night after playing two games of Life she got a headache that was about to rip out of her brain. It seems like that if she monitors her sleep and doesn’t push it too hard she is fine, but if she pushes it like Friday night the headache attacks.
All in all things are going pretty well. I think she is now getting to the point where it is going to be more about the growing and showing than anything else. We will see.
Your baby is already mugging for the camera as she practices all sorts of facial expressions, such as squinting, yawning and grimacing, which will come in handy when you introduce her to pureed spinach. Check out what else is happening in utero:
You’re just getting comfortable with being a new mom, but you’re actually on the road to being a grandma. If your baby is a girl, her uterus is fully developed and the ovaries already hold primitive egg cells. Did that just make you feel a thousand years old, or what?
Your baby’s skin is still translucent and wrinkly, not unlike an old man’s, but more fat will soon accumulate under the dermas to plump her out. If you could peer inside right now, you’d be able to see all of her veins under her skin. And speaking of veins, your baby’s heart now pumps about 25 quarts of blood per day, and she hasn’t even seen Orlando Bloom yet! Also, her eyes are now locked and loaded at their final destination, facing forward rather than to the sides. (Whew!)
This is the week women get an amniocentesis, if their doc recommends it. In addition to supplying doctors with a boatload of info about the baby’s health, amnios are also more than 99 percent accurate in determining what version of baby you’ll be having. So if you want to know and you’re getting an amnio, now’s a great time to find out for sure.
Your baby weighs about 3 ounces this week and measures between 4 and 5 inches, about the length of your mascara.
If you don’t remember the game of Life, here you go.
Where will your choices take you?
You made it through high school, so now what’s next? Go to college or start a career -it’s your choice. Think the family life is for you? Take that path and see how many kids you’ll have! Will you venture down the risky road where fortunes can be won… and lost? Do whatever it takes to retire in style with the most wealth at the end of the game.
Spin the wheel of fate and take a drive along the twisting roads families have enjoyed for more than 50 years! Do good deeds as you go through the game to earn Life Tiles and more money down the road!
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