Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 32

This week brought sickness to my house. Paul and the kids were all very sick with flu. Leon (our youngest) was so drained he couldn’t walk! We had to carry him to the toilet. This from a child you normally cannot keep still for 5 minutes was very worrying. They all lay around on the sofa or in their beds, watching movies and snoozing. I miraculously avoided it completely! I’m wondering if the flu vaccine protected me or if I was just lucky as I am taking lots of vitamins and supplements. 

I took the opportunity to start sorting out and washing baby clothes. I donated huge amounts to charity, but was delighted there were lots I could use from the boys. I did keep a mix of blues, yellows, greens etc in newborn sizes and there was a good bit of white too. It was so lovely to see all the little babygrows and vests drying around the house. I was very emotional remembering the boys in certain outfits and really began to get excited about this little girls arrival. The tiny socks and booties always get me right in the heart strings :) 

This week I met up with two past clients for breakfast. One was a mum of twins who I worked closely with throughout their pregnancy and for the first few months of their boys' lives. It was wonderful to catch up and see how well the boys were doing. I even got to cuddle them both and we held one sleeping baby each as we chatted and ate. It was great! When leaving my client gave me such a beautiful gift and the two of us fought back tears when saying goodbye. The bond we have is so lovely and I look forward to meeting up again soon. 

I also met another client and her husband later in the week who has a special place in my heart. I worked with them throughout pregnancy (they attended my Cuidiu antenatal course) and for the first few months of their daughter's life. Their baby was gravely ill when born and they had to travel to another country for specialist treatment. It was a rollercoaster of emotions for them and I walked that journey beside them, offering support every step of the way. When they returned I worked with them for a number of months, watching their beautiful daughter grow stronger and helping them both deal with the trauma they had lived. They are writing a blog to share their experience for World Doula Week so watch this space! 

With DoulaCare Ireland Doula  Emer McGlade  and  Gail Tully  from Spinning Babies 

With DoulaCare Ireland Doula Emer McGlade and Gail Tully from Spinning Babies 

Over the weekend I attended the Spinning Babies Workshop, in the Glenroyal Hotel. It was full of like minded birth professionals (mostly midwives and Doulas, with one chiropractor) and lots of friends and familiar faces to catch up with.

It was a fantastic day and I gained lots of useful information from it. I was however extremely sore sitting for the day and so left early (as I had my friends 40th that evening to attend). I could barely drive the 35 minutes home and hobbled into the house. I lay down for a while and Paul ran me a bath to try to help the pain. I relaxed into the warm water and listening to my GentleBirth tracks. The pain wouldn’t let up so unfortunately I had to miss the night with my friends. I felt awful but there was no way I could make it. 

I had a GP check up and she said it sounds like a mix of round ligament pain and SPD (or pelvic gurdle pain) She recommended a physiotherapist in Sutton Cross that specilises in the area. I called and booked in. Looking forward to the support. I will let you know how that goes. In the meantime I ordered a pregnancy support band to take some of the pressure off my ligaments. It is giving me great relief and I am getting longer into the day before the pain makes me lie down. (photos/video from facebook) 

Next week myself and Paul have a night away planned for our babymoon! So I am very excited about that. 

Until next time....Jen x 

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Week 32: What Is Happening To Your Baby

  • Your baby is the size of a Papaya this week
  • Your baby will gain put to half of her birth week in these last few weeks 
  • There is much less room to move inside you anymore
  • Your baby now has fingernails, toenails and some will have hair on their head
  • Most of your baby's bones have now hardened. The exception to this is the skull which will have soft spots (fontanelles) to help make the birth of your baby that bit easier. The fontanelles make sure the baby's head can fit through the birth canal easier.
  • Your baby is doing lots of practise to prepare for life outside of you. They are kicking, sucking, swallowing and breathing trying to refine the skills they will be needing in a few weeks when they are born. 

 

Week 32: What Might Be Happening To your Body

  • Your blood volume has increased by up to 50 % since you got pregnant - this can mean a drop in Iron for some women and you may have to take Iron supplements if it drops too low. 
  • You may feel less co-ordinated as your growing uterus shifts your sense of gravity and can make you clumsy, change your posture and put strain on your lower back. 
  • Your nipples and areola might darken - why we are not fully sure. 
  • You may notice increased vaginal discharge. This serves the purpose of preventing infection 
  • If you have an 'innie' belly button, you may find it is now an 'outie' with the increased size of your belly. Don't worry - this will usually revert back to what is normal for you after the birth of the baby. 

Week 32: Pregnancy Tip 

If you have pets such as a dog or a cat , you need to begin preparing them for the arrival of your new baby. As they are probably used to being the centre of attention, it can be a huge stress for them when you bring home baby and have no time for them anymore. Pets like dogs or cats are already very connected to us and so they will have sensed that something is different. They do need to be prepared for the changes to come though and this is best done before baby arrives. We will have a blog post coming soon on this topic - so keep an eye on the blog. 

Top Tips on Writing Birth Preferences

Writing your birth preferences is important to do for a number of reasons:  
1. It gives you time and space to think about what you want for your birth
2. It opens communication between you and your birth support team
3. It helps you to familiarise yourself with hospital policies
4. You have time to compare policies with national guidelines, international guidelines and evidence based research.
5. It gives you a tool to remain in control and make informed decisions
 

Key points when writing your birth preferences

Woman taking notes.jpg

Keep your language open and positive. You have a chance to create the atmosphere you wish to birth in. Positivity is key and opens on a good relationship with your team.

Know your chosen hospitals policies. Each hospital has different policies around key factors in labour and birth. You are free to question these and even change hospital if you feel better suited to a different standard of care.

Know the HSE (national) and international guidelines / best practice / evidence. This is key. If you know what the evidence says then you can make an unbiased informed decision, rather than being swept along with a phrase such as “that’s the way we have always done it here”

Keep it to 10 points, or less. Anything more will negate the things that are important to you.

Don’t bother putting things in that are already policy in your chosen hospital (ie drinking water during labour) Again if you are familiar with your hospitals policies then you can avoid this.

Think about the atmosphere you want to birth in. Would you like the lights dimmed, music playing, limit the number of people in the room etc Or are you happy to have lights on, student midwives and doctors in the room etc?

Be firm on the points that are non negotiable for you once all is OK with baby (i.e. if you absolutely do not want an episotomy and would rather have a natural tear if it came to it). Some decisions need to be made in a split second and having discussions around the really important issues before hand are vital.

Create birth preferences for a Caesarean Birth preferences as well. This is a good idea for all the same reasons that are mentioned here. You can have the discussions, make informed decisions and then ‘park it’ to one side. You have your just in case covered, remaining in control. Then you can shift your focus back to the birth you visualise. It can be on the next page so your focus is not necessarily on this outcome if you are not planning to have an elective Caesarean, but it does mean that if things don't turn out as you had hoped you have something written up to help you create a dialogue with staff. 

Create your birth preferences with your birth partner. This is important as they will be your advocate for the day. Being aware of what you want and why will help them be a better advocate for you. 

Bring multiple copies so you have them for shift changes. Make sure your partner is aware they need to ask the team caring for you to read through them and discuss them with you both. 

Finally knowledge is power as they say - but trust in the process is also important. All the above are important and give you the knowledge to discover what you want for your birth. It gets the discussion out of the way before labour begins, as during labour it's important to park the conscious brain as much as you can. You body and your baby know what to do, they are an awesome team, made to work together. Let your advocate voice your preferences and allow yourself to go with your labour journey.

Here at Doulacare Ireland we will always helps our clients draw up their birth preferences after meeting with their birth doula for an antenatal visit. We listen to what is important for our clients and offer information on evidence based care that will enable them to be aware of what they might want to include in a birth preference sheet. We would always encourage clients to have some birth preferences to facilitate improved communication between clients and staff. 

Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 24

So this week I had a full week of postpartum clients and scheduled phone calls to follow up on. I love that I am feeling better in myself and can still be out supporting families. We have a great mix of clients at the moment (with different backgrounds, ages of children and personalities) So no two days are the same and I really enjoy chatting away with each client, catching up on their news and supporting them with the help they need to make life with a new baby that bit less stressful. 

Picture of the Queue in the Rotunda that circulated on social media around the same week I attended

Picture of the Queue in the Rotunda that circulated on social media around the same week I attended

I had my 24 week check up in the Rotunda public clinic, where I was due to speak with their community midwife team to see if they will accept me. I arrived to an unbelievable queue. Not only was the waiting room to check in full but there was a queue of pregnant women standing all down the hall as far as the clinic waiting room. There was at least 40 women ahead of me.... just to check in!! I really was shocked as some of the women were heavily pregnant and struggling to stand in a stuffy corridor. (It was freezing outside so most of us were bundled up too which didn’t help ;) 

Eventually I made my way to the check-in desk and I was told to take a number and I would be called by consultant. I explained I was due to speak with the team and so she told me to find a midwife at the nurses station to chat to. I did find a midwife and I was told very bluntly that there was no appointment for me to plead my case as there was no point. As Leon was 4.53kg they would not accept me. I then asked about the NBAC clinic and I was told their cut off point was 4kg. I was so stunned by this attitude. I questioned why, in a healthy pregnancy I could not have antenatal care in the community, because one of my babies was over their criteria?? She simply said it was out of their scope of practice, which is absurd. All they do is check my pee, my blood pressure and measure my bump. Surely they could do that and if they were concerned about anything I would happily go to the hospital. There was no talking to them. I did ask why I had to wait until 24 weeks to find this out, as when I spoke with the community midwife team, when choosing which hospital to book, they didn’t seem to have a problem at all. Again very unhelpful, I received an 'it is what it is' type answer. 

I was bitterly disappointed. I wasn’t sure if I was going to cry or boil over with rage, not just for me but for all the other pregnant women using this hospital. Women do so much better with midwifery led care and it is such a shame that a previous “big baby” can put a woman who has a healthy baby and pregnancy in every way into high risk for her antenatal care. I sat another hour and a half waiting to be called, fuming over the system and how women are treated. 

When the consultant called me I went in, still bubbling under the surface. He seemed to think that because the baby is a girl she will be smaller and there is no way she will be 10lbs (surely this is not evidence based at all but interesting to hear a total conflict of their reasoning for not allowing me the care I requested) I spoke with him about my options and he did a similar thing explaining ‘hospital policy’ and so forth.  He did say I had a 90% chance of vaginal birth as I laboured well with both boys and reached the second stage with Leon before a caesarean was required. He reassured me that there would be no pressure on me for a caesarean birth and hopefully everything should go as planned. 

I felt a bit better about this at least, but as I have seen time and time again with doula clients – everything is grand until 38 weeks arrive and then the discussions begin about caesarean, risk with VBAC, big baby and so on. We will just have to wait and see what happens. He said he would like to see me again in 4 weeks so I queued again for 15 minutes and asked for an appointment. The lady was so unhelpful. I was asking about times that I could work childcare and she said I would just get the next available slot.

I decided there was no way on Earth I would do that queue every appointment, so I walked over to the semi-private clinic to see would they take me on. The receptionist there was so lovely. She couldn’t have been more accommodating. Booked me in for a date and time that suited me and cancelled my public appointments. She even moved my GTT to the semi private clinic so I could "relax there, as the rooms are much quieter" -  I wanted to hug her! 

So I left feeling deflated but glad to have the public system behind me. I will think about my options over Christmas. I may make a few phone calls to the Coombe and see what is available there. 

Santa Visit.jpg

After a crazy week it was wonderful to get out for the weekend. Paul and I took the kids to Causey Farm Santa Experience. It was really amazing, they made it such a special experience and the kids loved it.  We left feeling very festive and even got a take away as a treat on the way home. We all snuggled up after to watch a movie and I for one so needed this day to just switch off and remember what is important. 

The kids went to Butlers chocolate factory with my mam and her partner on Sunday, which they loved. They came home delighted with their chocolate santas. While they were at that I did a mad dash to Blanchardstown shopping centre to get some Christmas shopping done. My tummy has been a bit sick the last few days so I had to keep stopping for breaks but I got the bulk of it done. 

Baby is moving around lots and you can now see my tummy moving with her. Paul gets a little freaked out by this which I find hilarious - he thinks it’s like an alien LOL. He likes to know she’s moving and doing well but doesn’t want to see it!

Until next time... Jen x

 

Week 24: What Is Happening To Your Baby

Your baby is the size of a cantaloupe melon this week 

Your baby is the size of a cantaloupe melon this week 

  • Your baby is really starting to put on weight and fill out this week and they are about the size of a cantaloupe now. 
  • Their lungs are developing branches in the respiratory tract as well as cells that produce surfactant, a substance that will help his air sacs inflate once they are born and start breathing in air. 
  • Your baby's skin is becoming much pinker and less see-through as they develop.
  • Your baby's brain is also growing rapidly now and will continue to develop at a enormous rate over the next few weeks

Week 24: What Might Be Happening To Your Body

  • If there are any concerns about Gestational Diabetes you will usually have your Glucost Tolerance Test around this week. You can read more about it in our blog post here
  • You may have lots of backache now as your muscles are having to work harder to carry the extra weight. You could try getting some body work done with a physio or osteo, or treat yourself to a nice massage (just make sure the therapist is trained in pregnancy massage and can accommodate you). 
  • Dry eyes can be a symptom some women suffer from in pregnancy. This can be accompanied by irritation and a feeling of grittiness. Talk to your optician about how you can make this less uncomfortable 
  • Some women will suffer from Piles/Haemhorrhoids during their pregnancy - they can be the result of becoming constipated and increasing the amount of fibre and fluids in your diet can help. It can also help to avoid sitting for long periods of time. Talk to your GP if they are severe as you may need some medication to help relieve the pain. 

Week 24: Pregnancy Tip

There is a huge amount of breastfeeding support around Ireland - find out where you can access support before baby arrives 

There is a huge amount of breastfeeding support around Ireland - find out where you can access support before baby arrives 

Are you hoping to breastfeed? If yes start looking around for a good breastfeeding class you can attend. You may find your hospital run these but they can book up fast, and it's really helpful to take a class before baby arrives. It's also useful to find out where your supports are and get in touch with them beforehand as well - this way you will know who to contact if you should need some extra support after. Friends of Breastfeeding offer a Buddy system, whereby a trained Mum will come out and support you in the early days of breastfeeding. It's such a great idea and completely free - so definitely worth booking. Cuidiu have regular breastfeeding support groups around Ireland as well as trained breastfeeding counsellors who are available by phone to provide support and a listening ear. (Both Mary and Jen are Cuidiu Breastfeeding Counsellors). La Leche League also run support groups around Ireland have their Leaders are available to offer breastfeeding support as well. So do make contact and if you can at all once you are on maternity leave, pop into your local group and say hi. Pregnant women are always more than welcome along and it's nice to meet other Mums who are breastfeeding before your baby arrives. 

Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 23

This week was a good week. Bren (my father-in-law) is recovering well after his surgery. He is resting and just waiting to hear results. This week my belly has really ‘popped’ and I feel great having a propper bump. I am feeling much better in myself overall. I am much more tired with this pregnancy than with the boys but I am 10 years older than when I had Seth so of course that makes a huge difference to my body! I rarely get sick now and the nausea is mostly a thing of the past. I do feel sick when I am really tired and still have to be careful what I eat. I tried a cup of tea this week, hoping above hope I could manage it again as I really miss my cups of tea....but alas no. I managed 2 sips and felt sick so had to stop. It didn’t even taste nice! This is another new experience for me. With Leon I went off tea for the first trimester but as I entered the second I could enjoy it again. 

I started with another new DoulaCare Ireland client this week who has booked one of our 100 hour postpartum packages. It’s lovely to work with the really small newborns and helping to make that time really special for the family. I am part of a team of 3 doulas who will offer them the care, information and support to truly saviour this experience. 

Getting organised for business meetings concerning DoulaCare Ireland 

Getting organised for business meetings concerning DoulaCare Ireland 

I also had an important meeting on Wednesday to grow the business end of DoulaCare Ireland. I am really enjoying the mix of work, putting on my business clothes and heels for meetings and yet still being able to offer hands on support to new families doing what I love. Myself and Mary are planning our CPD day for January too – which is really exciting! We will have a packed day chock full of information including skill sharing - with 12 doulas on our team we have an amazing group of women with a huge amount of knowledge and skills to share with all of us.  We also have a wonderful photographer - Brid O Donovan, coming to do professional shots of our team members. We will keep you all informed as plans expand. 

I did one night shift to help out one of our clients who was let down by a nanny agency. All our Postpartum Doulas were booked up so I stepped in to make sure our clients get the best of care at all times. I have to say I struggled to get through the night and it did knock me for a day or two after. I am glad I took the decision to stop nights a while ago and mind myself and baba more. 

Next week I have a check up to plead my case for community midwives or NBAC clinic! Hopefully it all goes well... wish me luck ;) 

I will fill you all in next week. Until next time....Jen x

Week 23: What Is Happening To Your Baby

Your baby is the size of a Papaya this week 

Your baby is the size of a Papaya this week 

  • Your baby is the size of a Papaya this week 
  • Your baby will be gaining a huge amount of weight over the next few weeks (they will double their body weight over this time period). 
  • Your baby's bone marrow is making blood cells this week (up until now the liver and spleen were doing this). 
  • Your baby is becoming increasingly active now and loud noises may make them jump (not because of fear - it's more of a reflex right now). Their ears have developed so well they can now hear noises such as a dog barking or a loud car horn beeping.
  • Their improved hearing means they can also hear your voice really clearly, as well as your heartbeat. Don't forget to chat or sing to them and get them used to the sound of your voice. 

Week 23: What Might Be Happening To Your Body

  • You may find you have swollen or bleeding gums. Increased blood flow during pregnancy can make your gums more likely to swell or bleed. It's usually normal and nothing to worry about - but like always if you are concerned do check in with your dentist (and use a softer toothbrush). 
  • You may find your iron levels are low so you might have to try and get extra iron - either from increasing the iron in your diet, or from taking an iron supplement. This will stop you from getting anaemia (which happens when your body doesn't get enough of the iron it needs to produce your red blood cells, it can leave you weak, dizzy and short of breath - so if you do feel any of these symptoms contact your GP). 

Week 23: Pregnancy Tip

Are you reading any Pregnancy or Birth books. Our top recommendations are:

The Irish Better Birth Book  - one of the few books that cover the practicalities of birth in Ireland 

The Irish Better Birth Book - one of the few books that cover the practicalities of birth in Ireland 

 

The Irish Better Birth Book by Midwife and GentleBirth founder Tracy Donegan. It's very easy to read and full of useful information about birth in Ireland. Most of the birth books we would recommend have a US or UK focus so it's great there is a book that focuses on the Irish system and the options women have in this country.  Highly recommended by us here in DoulaCare Ireland and we can guarantee you will  have lots to think about after reading it, and have a huge amount of information that will help you prepare for your birth in a positive way and make informed decisions regarding the care you choose. 

 

  

The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin is a great read for both you and whoever is going to be supporting you on the day of your birth. It is a fantastic resource. (It is actually the main textbook for the DONA doula training that Mary helps Tracy Donegan co- teach in Ireland every year.) There's useful tips about how to support you during each phase of your labour, and pictures of positions that you can take that can help with birth, as well as information about interventions that might be suggested and the pro's and con's of each of them. 

The Birth Partner  - Penny Simkin  

The Birth Partner - Penny Simkin  

The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding is THE book to read if you are hoping to breastfeed your baby. There is so much information in here - you really won't need to read another breastfeeding book. 

Ina May's Guide To Childbirth. This is such a lovely book. There is a wealth of birth stories at the start and one of the things I love about it is how varied they are. They are written by women who came to The Farm (the childbirth centre that Ina May established) to have their birth, and no two are the same. I think for any Mum having a baby they show how different birth can be for everyone. The book is also a childbirth education book and contains lots of useful information that you can use to help draw up your birth preferences when you are ready. 

Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 13

Well this week I was back doing the job I love. I was working with 3 different families and then on Sunday I spoke at the Baby Wearing Ireland, Wear a Hug Fair. It was a great day and I was honoured to speak as part of their expert panel. There were lots of people to catch up with too. Over all it was a fantastic day full of chatting with new or expecting parents and catching up with old friends. 

With the other women on the expert panel at the Wear A Fair - BabyWearing Consultant Olwen Row from  Born To Be Carried  and Lactation Consultant Mairead Murphy from  Better Breastfeeding . It was so lovely to catch up with them. 

With the other women on the expert panel at the Wear A Fair - BabyWearing Consultant Olwen Row from Born To Be Carried and Lactation Consultant Mairead Murphy from Better Breastfeeding. It was so lovely to catch up with them. 

I have been feeling pretty rough this week. My sickness seems to be getting worse again. Perhaps it is the shock of being back at work (LOL!).  I am lucky to have many friends in the maternity field so I made a few calls and spoke with some HCPs about the sickness. One new drug that seems to be up and coming in Cariban. It is for severe morning/all day sickness and has been used in Australia and USA for many years. It is still new here so I plan to speak with the hospital staff next week at my booking appointment. 

I have taken to driving with a big plastic bowl beside me in the car. I have had a few hairy moments where I could feel I was about to get sick but was in 3 lane traffic with no where to pull in – so the bowl has saved me a few times! 

On Friday I nearly rang my husband to collect me  when I was half way home as I wasn’t sure I could drive any more. After 20 minutes of driving I had stopped 4 times to get sick. I managed to pull myself together and get home. I literally crawled into bed and conked out for 2 hours!

I have decided to pull back a bit on my work load. I absolutely love what I do and I am so lucky to have amazing clients who make me excited to go to work every day. However, I spend my working day minding everyone else and ensuring they are ok. It is time I do the same for myself and baba. So next week I will be working my last night shift for probably a year or two! I can’t believe it. It does seem surreal. 

I managed this week to pop all my pre-pregnancy clothes into black bags and up into the attic. I am firmly out of them now. I am in leggings next size up and some baggy tops from Pennys. I also have a few items I bought that are maternity. To my frustration Paul couldn’t find my bag of maternity clothes from Seth & Leon so I may have to buy some more as I go along. 

Anyway....Until next time... Jen x

 

Week 13: What Is Happening To Your Baby: 

Photo by  Ernest Porzi  on  Unsplash

Photo by Ernest Porzi on Unsplash

  • Your baby is the size of a lemon
  • They may be able to suck their thumb from this week
  • Tiny fingerprints are forming on your baby's fingers
  • The part of your baby's brain responsible for solving problems and memory is starting to form this week 
  • If you are having a boy his testicles are now formed and his penis is growing
  • If you are having a girl, her ovaries are now developed (and contain all her millions of eggs). 

 

 

 

 

Week 13: What Might Be Happening With Your Body:

  • Woo hoo!!! You have made it through the first trimester.
  • You may be noticing an increase in vaginal discharge which will increase throughout your pregnancy due to the increase in the levels of oestrogen in the body. It is there to protect your birth canal from infection. 
  • Your clothes will be definitely getting too tight now. 
  • You might find your energy levels and appetite increasing.
  • You might find your sex drive increased. 

 

Pregnancy Tip: 

You may still be suffering from nausea and vomiting at this stage of your pregnancy. It may just be lingering for a bit longer than the first trimester. For some women it can last a few weeks into the second trimester. There is a chance, however - especially if the nausea and vomiting are still very severe at this point - that you may have a condition called hyperememsis. This is a complication of pregnancy that involves severe nausea, vomiting, weight loss and dehydration. If you suspect you might have this,  it can help to talk to others for support. There is a fantastic group on Facebook here. If you think you may be vomiting excessively do talk to your GP and Healthcare Provider and see if they can provide anything to help. 

     

    Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 11

    Well I have been flat out this week with work. Doulacare Ireland is growing from strength to strength and I am loving every second of working with our amazing team. We did a fantastic Google Hangouts call for the team and shared knowledge and skills. I am also working with some lovely families and I am reminded daily why I love my job so much. 

    Seth has been really sweet this week and is regularly making suggestions for names for the new baby. Some are a bit crazy from video games and movies but some I really like too. 

    The sickness has been bad this week but I am super busy and I know that often makes things worse. I have been reminded to mind myself in it all. If you don’t mind yourself you can’t mind anyone else!

    Two evenings this week I experienced stitch like pains in my side. They were pretty horrible but went away quickly and I didn’t have any other concerns. It was most likely round ligament pain. At this stage with my uterus growing it can be common to feel cramping and pain in the lower abdomen and back 

    Our family are getting excited for our first sun holiday in nearly 5 years. The kids are thrilled and I know myself and Paul are really looking forward to unwinding and spending time as a family. 

    I am working 6 days this week so plan to do all the packing on Sunday (only day off). It is such a happy feeling to pack and I am sure the boys will get stuck in too. 

    * * * * * * 

    Week 11: What Is Happening To Your Baby

    • Your baby is now the size of a lime

    • Tiny tooth buds are starting to appear under your baby's gums

    • Your baby's testicles or ovaries have now formed (though it is still to early to tell if you are having a boy or a girl from any tests).

    • Your baby now has fingers and toes and hair follicles are starting to form on the skin 

     

     

     

     

    Week 11: What Might Be Happening With Your Body

    • Some of your ailments - such as your morning sickness, should be easing off at this stage
      • However, you may now have heartburn, excess gas and bloating (thanks to increased progesterone hormones in the body).
    • That progesterone causes digestion to slow down - which can also cause constipation. 
    • You may be gaining some weight now that your nausea is easing up and you can eat properly again - this is normal and to be expected at this stage. 

     

    Pregnancy Tip: When to Worry About Pain During Pregnancy: 

    While some discomfort is common during pregnancy and is perfectly normal, there are times to be concerned about it (and it goes without saying, do always check with your GP or Dr if you have any worries). 

    When to Worry About Pain During Pregnancy.jpg

    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!).