Jen' Pregnancy Diary: Week 8

Our little peanut 

Our little peanut 

So our early scan was amazing. As I mentioned in my previous post,  I had decided for my own piece of mind to get an early scan privately at Merrion Fetal Health Clinic. We saw our little peanut with a perfect fluttering heartbeat. My husband was thrilled that a) there was just one baby and b) there was a normal heartbeat. He feels like he can relax and enjoy everything now. 

I skipped out of the office and in a way it feels more real now. (I have been having all the clear pregnancy signs but there is something so special about seeing that little baby on the screen :) 

After much debate and many many phone calls, I have found my care givers. I can attend the Community Midwives Antenatal Clinic in the Rotunda, but for my birth, it will be whatever midwife is on duty. I am happy to go ahead with this as all the evidence shows that women have better outcomes under midwifery led care. In order to attend the Community Midwives in the Rotunda, I must book as a public patient. I attend the antenatal clinic for my first appointment and from there on out, I can receive my care in the community. 

I am not overly thrilled about the public waiting times but hopefully, it will be just for the one appointment. I also have to wait for this first appointment to request semi private postnatal care (as my health insurance covers semi-private completely even though I have chosen not to go semi for antenatal care)

My first appointment will be at 14 weeks. This will include a scan, blood test, urine screening and meeting a consultant (whoever is on duty) The hospital has told me to expect this appointment to take around an hour and a half. If you are unsure what your first visit will include you can call your care provider and ask. Don’t be afraid to bother them, this is your special time and they are happy to help. 

This week I was hit with a tummy bug (or at least I think it was a bug) I spent a full 24 hours unable to hold anything down. It was not pleasant but my husband took care of me and kept everything going with the boys and the house. Again the wonderful DoulaCare team stepped up to ensure our clients were covered. 

Some care advice for tummy bugs during pregnancy are: 

Tips for managing Tummy Bugs.png

 

I had to go out and buy some bigger clothes. I have not put on any weight on the scales but my clothes were uncomfortable as my boobs are bigger and my tummy is bloated. I am living in leggings and baggy tops right now but I’m comfortable at least!

I am excited to be at the point where I have a bump :) 

Until next time...Jen x

Week 8: What is Happening With Your Baby

 

Your baby is approximately the size of a raspberry this week. 

Your baby is approximately the size of a raspberry this week. 

  • Your baby is the size of a raspberry this week
  • Your baby is growing their eyes and ears. 
  • Your baby's tail is nearly gone

 

 

 

 

Week 8: What Might Be Happening With Your Body

  • You may notice your bra has gotten a lot tighter. Your breasts are growing, getting bigger and heavier and may be sore. Your milk producing lobules in your breasts are expanding to get your body ready for breastfeeding. You will probably go up a cup or two by the time your pregnancy is ended (so you will definitely need some new bra's).
  • Yes - you did just fall asleep at your desk and wake up with drool over you!! Fatigue is setting in and you may want to just nap ALL THE TIME!
  • You may still have nausea and morning sickness (why do they call it 'MORNING' sickness! This can strike at any time!) Have a look at our previous blog post for tips on how to manage this. 
  • Pregnancy cramps - if they are severe, or you are in any way worried do contact your GP or midwife, but just to reassure you that for many women this is totally normal at this stage of pregnancy as your uterus expands. 

 

Pregnancy Tip: 

Trying to get an extra nap in during the day can really help with fatigue levels. Even just lying down on the coach for a rest can be useful (as naps may be out of the question especially if there are other children already!). 

 

 

Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 7

So I have hit week 7 (I think) I have had to ditch my underwire bras completely as the pain was too much. My boobs have gone up 2 cup sizes already so who knows where they will stop! I am now in the only 34e non-underwire bra I could find in Dunnes during a quick dash between postpartum clients. It’s not pretty but it is way more comfortable. 

The tiredness has hit me too. I literally feel like I could put my head down on a table and be gone in 1.3 seconds. I sometimes wonder if I could sleep standing up. I have had to pull back on work a little and I am so lucky to have an amazing team of doulas who can step in to cover. In DoulaCare we all work together and there is constant back-up for our clients. I always tell doulas (and the clients we work with) that self-care is so vital. It is so important for a doula to must look after themselves before caring for others. So it is definitely time I actually take my own advice. For now, I am limiting myself to 2 night-shifts a week and ensuring I have at least one full day off to be with my family.

I have decided to go for an early scan so I am attending the Merrion Fetal Health Clinic on Wednesday and I will have a better idea of dates then. Right now I think our baby is due around the 30th March. For my body that means closer to mid-April as I carried both my previous babies ‘over’. Seth was 40+8 after a painful sweep. Leon was 40+14 after an induction of ARM. Who knows how long they would have stayed in there if left to their own devices LOL!

Pic: CCO Creative Commons

Pic: CCO Creative Commons

There are studies out there that suggest too many ultrasounds are bad for a developing baby, but considering most women only have 2 or 3 scans during pregnancy I have decided to go ahead for my own peace of mind. It is something to consider if you decide to look into early scans. My friend Helen has joked about me having triplets for the past year, and I do feel the universe may feel I could cope as I specialise in supporting families of multiples and premature babies. I, however, am not so sure so I am going in the hope of giving myself peace of mind that there is one little peanut in there! 

I am excited to let you know how the scan goes. Hopefully, there is a strong little heartbeat and a happy baby in there. Paul is coming with me, which is lovely as I think seeing the baby makes it more real for partners. 

Until next time...Jen x

Week 7: What is happening with your Baby

On Week 7 your baby is the size of a blueberry! 

On Week 7 your baby is the size of a blueberry! 

  • Your baby is still an embryo and is about the size of a blueberry this week. 
  • The limb buds are developing and look like tiny arms and legs   
  • Webbed hands and feet are emerging from these limb buds
  • Your baby has a small tail (an extension of their tailbone) which will disappear in a few weeks. 
  • Your baby may be already sucking their thumb.

 

Week 7: What might be happening to your body

  • You may be experiencing morning sickness (see my post from last week for some tips on how to manage if you are very nauseous) 
  • You may have food cravings and/or aversions 
  • You may need to pee a lot more even though baby is still tiny - your kidneys are working a lot harder due to increased blood volume in your body. 
  • Breakouts of acne
  • Cramping and/or bleeding -  it is fairly common for women to feel cramping, and some women will also get some spotting (especially after sex). Do always check in with your GP or midwife if you have any worries about this (always better to be safe than sorry), but it can also be good to know it can be normal. 
  • Your breasts may have grown in size (up to a cup size bigger). 
  • You may have no symptoms at all at this stage of pregnancy. 

Pregnancy Tip

  • It can help to start your research to choose your care provider at this stage of your pregnancy. Don't just rely on the recommendations of friends and family as their needs could be hugely different from yours. Figure out what you your hopes and expectations are for your birth and talk to a number of different people before deciding on the best path for you. 

 

 

 

 

Big News - Jen has an announcement!

I’m Jen :) Mam to two fun loving boys (Seth is 10 and Leon is 6) Wife to my hubby Paul, living in North Dublin. I am a Birth & Postpartum Doula, amongst other things, and I am co-owner of a national Doula agency DoulaCare Ireland www.doulacare.ie Follow my story as I learn what it’s like to be pregnant again! Juggling a crazy work life around my family.

* * * * * * * * 

Jen is expecting. Baby No 3 is on the way

Jen is expecting. Baby No 3 is on the way

So here I am, pregnant after 6 years and learning it all again! I am a doula, and so through my work I am surrounded by pregnant women constantly. I answer their questions and we have discussions around many topics. But now that I too am pregnant it all changes. I am no longer the professional, I am simply a mother scrambling to do best for her growing baby. 

It’s crazy really. I’ve done this twice before. It is truly amazing how much you forget and how ‘baby brain’ takes over. I am finding myself googling things like “is it safe to eat honey while pregnant?” 

Yes, I actually had to check that as I remembered my babies couldn’t have honey until 12 months. I was almost sure honey was ok in pregnancy.....but the seed of doubt was there and sure it only takes a few seconds to check and have peace of mind. Where would we be without the internet?

...now that I too am pregnant it all changes. I am no longer the professional, I am simply a mother scrambling to do best for her growing baby. 

Things have changed a lot since my first was born (he will be 11 when this baby makes an appearance). I remember sitting up on the PC searching for information. Yes the PC, no laptops or smart phones back then! Oh no ;) I found a chat room called Rollercoaster and without even knowing it, I found my tribe. I could speak to other women about my pregnancy and we could offer peer support. It was wonderful and refreshing. As I was only 19, I found everywhere in the ‘real world’ people gave me the sort of “ah bless her she hasn’t a clue” look whenever I would ask about breastfeeding or co-sleeping. I found my instincts toward these strong, even though I knew nobody who did either. 

Pregnancy Test.jpg

Through parenting trial and error with my first two, I realised that for me personally breastfeeding, cosleeping (in a safe way) and responding to my baby's needs was the type of parent I wanted to be. My first son got a little of everything, pressure from around me to “put him down, not hold him all the time”, “get him out of the bed” or “give him a bottle he is starving” meant I doubted my instincts and had some rough times attempting “pick up, put down” methods and topping up with bottles. We found our rhythm eventually (and hopefully I haven’t scarred him for life!). 

By the time my second guy had come along, I had much more confidence and so he was exclusively breastfed.  We did erect the cot, but it remained an ornament to drape dirty clothes over. My husband was pretty supportive in everything I chose and really was happiest with whatever option gave him the most sleep. 

Now that you have some background on me you can follow my weekly updates. Ask questions and share your own stories and please do feel free to share with friends. 

Jen x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first blog post

Birthday party

"Birthday party" redirects here. For other uses, see Birthday party (disambiguation).

A birthday cake with lit novelty candles

Children at a birthday party. A birthday party is a celebration of the anniversary of the birth of the person who is being honored. The tradition started in the mid-nineteenth century but did not become popular until the mid-twentieth century.[1] Birthday parties are now a feature of many cultures.

In Western cultures, birthday parties include a number of common rituals. The guests may be asked to bring a gift for the honored person. Party locations are often decorated with colorful decorations, such as balloons and streamers. A birthday cake is usually served with lit candles that are to be blown out after a "birthday wish" has been made. The person being honored will be given the first piece of cake. While the birthday cake is being brought to the table, the song "Happy Birthday to You" or some other birthday song is sung by the guests.

At parties for children, time is often taken for the "gift opening" wherein the individual whose birthday is celebrated opens each of the gifts brought. It is also common at children's parties for the host to give parting gifts to the attendees in the form of "goodie bags". Children and even adults sometimes wear colorful cone-shaped party hats.

Birthday parties are often larger and more extravagant if they celebrate someone who has reached what is regarded in the culture as a milestone age, such as transition from childhood to adulthood. Examples of traditional coming of age celebrations include the North American sweet sixteen party and the Latin American quinceañera.