Saturday, February 1, 2014

Pregnancy so far...

 I can't believe I'm already on the last stretch, and that soon I will get to meet my little baby girl or boy! It's seemed to go by so fast - I wanted to jot down some of my thoughts and I would love it if other mothers had any advice for me!

     The first two months of pregnancy I felt pretty nauseous a lot of the time and had a hard time cooking for myself or Jordan. The intensity of smells was crazy, and that was what always triggered feeling sickish. At one point I even felt like I could smell water and be sick. After that faded, I felt so awesome! From the 3rd to the 6th month it seemed like I had extra energy, and felt better than normal. I also didn't start to show much of a bump until month 4 or 5, so sometimes I would forget I was pregnant when going about daily tasks, because I still felt like I was just normal "me". (but with super-energy!)  I guess for some reason I thought pregnancy would mean I was out of commission for 9 months, and that I would feel dreadful and heavy most of the time. So far that hasn't been true. Although, during this last trimester, I have been gradually been in need of more and more rest. I'm not able to work all day long any more, and have to take frequent breaks or mini naps during the day. In the last two months (8 and 9 months along) the bump has gotten seemingly suddenly bigger, and even though I still don't feel too heavy most of the time, I am definitely feeling it more now. Since being pregnant I've gone from a 26" waist to a 38" bump, and went from 97 lbs to 126lbs.

I think the most fun of being pregnant is feeling your baby move around inside you. It's amazing to see him/her respond to outside noises - if crazy movement is an indicator, our baby seems to like Jordan's voice and bagpipe music the best. Lol! Baby also seems to find it amusing to kick heartily when I am attempting to eat or rest, and apparently rather likes kicking my ribs until they pop. Ow.

Contrary to what most people have told me about the last trimester, I am not sick of being pregnant, and I don't feel as big as a house. (yet anyway! lol) But I am getting anxious to meet the little person!

We have been working hard on getting our house ready for the new arrival. Since we are planning a home birth, I am especially anxious to make things comfortable and pretty.

Here are some health related things I have been working on during the last 9 months:

Books I have been reading: Nourishing Traditions, Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby and Child Care Active Birth, Husband Coached Child Birth, Making Babies, The Naturally Healthy Pregnancy
(although not everything in all of these books do I agree with, they all have good things to say and lots of helpful advice)

Diet. A few things I have been trying to incorporate into my diet more - fresh greens in salads and smoothies, and good fats and meats. Also have been staying somewhat low gluten- for bread we have mostly eaten Ezekiel bread at home and baked with spelt four. When I can I have been doing some raw egg and milk smoothies as well. I have also been trying to cut out processed sugar. (though I haven't been as firm about that as I should!)

D-3. After my initial blood test early on in pregnancy, we found out I was severely deficient in vitamin D-3. This was surprising to me, and a bit annoying, as one would hope that spending lots of time outdoors in the sun would take care of this, right? Apparently not entirely. We've since heard that it actually takes 48 hours your skin to produce D-3 after being exposed to the sun, and that showers too often can interfere with the process by washing away the oils in your skin. (recently this hasn't been a problem for us, since we don't have real running water yet! lol) Also Jordan was doing some research and D-3 is super important for growing healthy teeth. Despite always taking care of my teeth and having a pretty healthy diet since childhood, I have always had weak teeth, and constantly been fighting cavities forming, and have even had to have a couple of root canals done. :( I always assumed it was genetic and there was no help for it, but perhaps it was because I was deficient in D-3 all this time? At any rate, after beginning to take 5000 IU of D-3 every day at the recommendation of my midwife, something very interesting happened. Around October Jordan noticed I had yet another cavity forming, this time near the gum line on one of my more front teeth. The enamel was gone and discolored, and there was already a hollow spot forming. (sorry if that's too much information!) Well, I was not happy to hear that, and foresaw yet  more dentist visits. In December Jordan checked the cavity, and we were both surprised and pleased that it was gone! Some faint discoloration was still there, but the hollow spot and the enamel had both grown back!!! *happy dance* So, does this mean I am now back to healthy levels of D-3? I sure hope so. (the next three things, cranberries, calcium, and good fats are also important for teeth)

Cranberries/cranberry supplement. So far fresh cranberries are my only very long-lasting specific craving during pregnancy. (although I've always been a fan of eating bags of fresh cranberries when available during the holidays) I'm a little bit ashamed to admit that I have gone through 10 lbs of fresh cranberries each month this fall and winter. I order them frozen from Azure Standard and eat them by the bowlful for snacks. I also have been taking a concentrated cranberry supplement now and then. None of this was recommended by my midwife, though I did check it out with her to make sure I wasn't over doing it!

Butter/Fish Oil/Coconut Oil. Good fats are so important! Especially for growing little baby's brain. I've tried to make an effort to have good butter around the house and to use it lots. Just in the last month I've also taken it a step further and bought organic pasture fed butter. (its yum!) Since July I've also been on a fish oil supplement for the first time in my life. For many years I've been hearing about the wonders of coconut oil, so I've kept a jar of the good stuff (extra virgin, cold pressed and all that) around for incorporation into meals.

Probiotics. Yogurt, milk kefir, water kefir, intestinal flora supplements, and sometimes included in the green superfood. I feel so much more energized when I have a daily source of probiotics. I haven't had near as much of this as I would have wished, but I have been trying to do better about keeping it around or making yogurt and kefir.

Magnesium Oil. Something I've started recently - due to this interesting article. Haven't yet seen any astounding results, but it can't hurt! :)

Aligned and Well Program. This was strongly recommended by my midwife. I have had a 'restorative exercise specialist' coming periodically to see me since late fall last year, and correcting my posture and stance, giving me gentle exercises and stretches to practice throughout the day, and tips for daily movement and walking to make it a permanent habit. I feel this has been very good for me, and hope it will help make things easier during delivery! See the website here.

None of the above things have I been faithful enough with, but I sincerely hope they have helped my baby grow healthy and strong. I am praying for that!

These are simply some of my thoughts and some of what I have learned during my pregnancy. Please do not start anything new without doing your own research! :)

I only have a couple of weeks to go now! My "official" due date is February 14th, though I am sure baby will come in it's own time. Excited!!


Desarae said...

So exciting!! Thanks for sharing all of your health and supplement tips. I especially found the information on D-3 interesting and I have terrible teeth as well, no matter how well I take care of them! I will certainly have to look into that and see if I can't myself some! I can't believe it, you could have a wee little bairn in your arms in as soon as two weeks! :)

Kristin said...

How exciting! :) I'm really interested in the fact that you're planning a home birth, too, because I really think that's something I'd like to do if I have kids someday. I'm sure the next couple of weeks will fly by!

Amy McKinney said...

Oh so very, very excited for you!! Really, sometimes I just can't believe you're all grown up and having a wee one of your own. I'm glad you don't feel "tired of being pregnant" but I never felt that either - but then Victoria came 2 weeks early. Maybe that comes (if it ever does) during the last week or if you're overdue... I had pretty good energy the last two trimesters.

The one nugget of advice I got and didn't take: rest when your baby naps. You probably won't be able to do that *really*, because there are still necessities that need doing around the house, but do try to rest as much as you can the first couple of weeks. I never felt very tired so I would clean house or stuff while Victoria napped, but then I would pay for it later when I was too exhausted to deal with the broken rest at night time. After a week or so, Victoria and I got accustomed to nighttime feedings (we co-slept, so she and I hardly woke up at night) and getting rest at night got easier.

If I had it to do over, I would force myself to rest or relax during some of her naps, and let my husband help me out a little more. After all, it's only for a few weeks, and the house can't go to ruin in a few weeks. :) Even if all you're doing is reading an article or a book or just closing your eyes for a little while, the rest really helps. Plus, there's nothing nicer than laying down with that little bundle and dozing. :)

Much love!

Paris Graham said...

You sound like you're really knowledgeable about nutrition during pregnancy, good for you! I love the Aligned and Well site too, her articles about squatting versus Kegel exercises were excellent. My only advice for labor is one thing I've used for every one of our 10 babies, that is: count it down. When things get tough tell yourself "this is hard, but I can do 10 more contractions." 10 contractions more when you're already in transition will get you pretty close to the end. If you get through 10 tell yourself good job, OK, I can do 5 more etc. Somehow giving yourself a goal really helps. At least it did for me. Good luck and keep trusting God, he has made your body to work perfectly.

Lilac Bud Gal said...

How exciting, Atlanta!! Oh this is just so wonderful... :) I honestly can't wait to 'meet' little baby either.
The stuff you have been learning is really interesting, though. I hadn't thought much about that aspect (diet, vitamins, etc). Ya'll's families must be so excited! :) And, I must add, for the record, that you look quite cute with a baby bump. :)

Laura Jane said...

So glad to see you reading Husband Coached Child Birth..I gleaned MUCH info from this book myself. And the concept DOES really work!!! Our six children were all birthed Calmly and peacefully with their Daddy as my "doula". We found that when I gave him "attentions" ie running my fingers through his hair and touching his face helped bring me to my pain-free zone.
Praying your delivery is as Beautiful:)

Ruth Torrijos said...

Oh I am sooo excited for you, Atlanta! :D Babies are adorable! I cannot wait to see the little one! You and Jordan must be so excited! I think your baby will be healthy, don't worry! I need to remember to pray for you... I sometimes forget! :O

So excited!


Kellie said...

I'm so happy and excited for you during this time, Atlanta! I loved reading the various health related topics you're been researching and implementing. (and I can't wait to see the house update!)

I was really intrigued at your mention of D-3! Do you think you might be able to share the brand/source?
We've been researching natural tooth remineralization a lot lately, and have been taking a cod liver oil/high vitamin butter oil blend which has had amazing results. I also have naturally weak teeth, and would love to look into the D-3 angle more in depth. Your cavity healing is totally cause for a happy dance! :D

Sending hugs and prayers your way!
Accordion to Kellie

Aspen Shannon said...

I cannot believe we get to meet the little one so soon! Excited!!! The boys and I will be coming up to visit once Momma and the kids get back. Miss and love you. Praying for an easy birth.

Love and Blessings -

~ Aspen

Boyer Family Singers said...

Huzzah for you Atlanta! I am so thankful you shared the information on a healthfilled pregnancy with all of us! My sisters and I hope to have natural home births when we have families of our own, and it is always to fun and fascinating to hear from young mothers like you tell about their journeys into motherhood! A big Congradulations to you and your husband! I will keep you and your little one in my prayers and hope that the birth goes exceedingly well!


The eldest sister & singer

Atlanta said...

Thank you all so much for all the kindness and the advice! I really appreciate it.

Kellie - the brand I was taking for the first few months was 'Twinlab D3 Dots'. They were the kind that just dissolve under the tongue, so very easy to take, even for children!

Lady E. said...

How inspiring! I love reading how pregnant moms are walking through pregnancy today. I am more inclined to go the natural route, too, and look forward to the day when I am able to experience this in pregnancy.

Dale Heustis said...

Hi, My first two in a hospital, the last three at home. At home was by far easier and sweeter! The last two were water births, and they were the easiest of all. I have trouble relaxing, and the warm water took care of that problem. So glad to see you and others of this generation correcting the mistakes that were accepted practice in my generation :)

Jake and Kristen Mosley said...

Thank you so much for sharing! We found out a few weeks ago that God has blessed us with a sweet little one (due in early Sept). So, your list is PERFECT timing! I can't wait to start pouring over the books, etc. Hehehe. And you have definitely given me hope that there is light at the end of the nausea/sickness tunnel. I completely understand about smelling water. It's funny, and I thought I was the only person to experience that.

You will be in my daily prayers for a fast, and beautiful delivery. Can't wait to see pictures of the beautiful little blessing!

Nora Roisin said...

Hullo, I'm Amorette from the Sewing Academy, and haunt your blog.

I'm glad that things are going well for you, also, it is encouraging for me (not that I'm anywhere near there yet). I have been reading about health topics lately, and a lot of this came up. I'm glad you are able to do it, and I wouldn't mind hearing how it goes.

What I'm after at the moment is preparing my body for this and other things, and some of these things are creeping into my list. Don't know if you might have heard, but people recommend having some transdermal magnesium on hand for birth to help with the pain.

I hope all goes well and you grow as a person.

Chip said...

Atlanta! How wonderful!

It's been so long since I've visited your blog- and since I've done anything with mine.

I'm so happy for you and Jordan! Congrats on the wedding and the new little one. :)

Blessings to you and your new family!


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