Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Prenatal Yoga with Siddhi

Fortunately I feel as though really wonderful people are coming into my life as my pregnancy progresses. In this case, I guess you could say that I brought myself into this person's life. I started prenatal yoga on Saturday. The teacher is this angelic, wonderful, wise woman - Siddhi. We did yoga in a circle and Siddhi empasized the importance of us mothers connecting. Throughout the class she had all sorts of tidbits of wisdom for us as we stretched and did exercises to prepare ourselves for birth, but also for being mothers. We sang to the babies and did protection chants and I think for the first time it really sank in for me, the reality, as I was nearly in tears. It was so sweet and so special and so much fun. I went again on Tuesday and had an equally lovely experience. The Tuesday class was in a different studio. The women were more quiet and the class was smaller, but I really enjoy the pregnancy appropriate exercises and Siddhi's general way of being and advising. She has all this great music too, which of course I completely appreciate. Before we close every class we sing a song about the sun shining brightly for our child. It's so sweet!!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Mary Jackson

So upon researching I had decided to call a few midwives. I got a call back on Thursday at 5pm from Mary Jackson, a little angel. The conversation started a little slow as it's a little hard to know where to begin, but once we started talking everything flowed so naturally and the more I felt so compelled by her lovely energy and spirit. A midwife has an entire different approach from that of an ob/gyn doctor. Shortly into our phone call it dawned on me that I knew her name ... My friend, Michael Chiacos, is very proud of the fact that he was born at home. And so was his brother. In fact, it was one of the first things I learned about Michael. He feels very connected to his birth experience. One of his best friends that he met when he was 5 was also born at home with the help of Mary Jackson and they have bonded for life over this. The reason I bring this up is because it's clear that this birthing experience means a great deal to Michael and I can bet that when the time comes for him to have a baby that he will want his wife to do it at home with a midwife. But I digress. Mary Jackson, it is obvious to me, takes the time to connect with her mothers and their partners. It's a very organic and spiritual approach. She spent a great deal of time talking to me about how the baby is learning from me right now. How it is important for me sleep when I feel tired as the baby will learn to sleep when he/she is tired once born. She encouraged me to spend time doing things that I love, to breathe deeply, to spend time bonding with my partner and talking to the baby. She explained the process of home birth to me which honestly sounded like heaven. We would be here with Javier, our dog, Mary Jackson, her assistants and everyone would be encouraging me and empowering me and helping the baby to have a beautiful entrance into the world. I wouldn't have to be in a room wondering what they were going to do to me next like I would at the hospital. I am interested in a water birth which I think would be more comfortable for all parties involved. For anyone reading this and thinking I'm crazy, I would encourage you to watch the film "The Business of Being Born" (you can rent this online I saw this film some time ago and it changed my prospective about child birth significantly. This is a monumental time in a woman's life and I want my experience to be positive and beautiful. In general I am the type of person who needs a lot of attention so I'm sure I would enjoy the care of a midwife!

I'm off to my first prenatal yoga class today. I'm looking forward to meeting more expectant mothers and doing some great stretching!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Since publicizing the pregnancy news, I've been sent into a strange frenzy of "oh, this is for real ... I need to start doing prenatal yoga ... need to start learning about the birth process ... need to start eating better, etc." I decided to start opening up the conversation about birth to women that I know and women who have been through the process somewhat recently. My cousin, Holly, has given birth to 3 children, 2 in the hospital and one at home, so she is a wealth of information. Starting these conversations has begun to introduce me to an entire vocabulary of which I was completely ignorant of 1 week ago: episiotomy, Braxton-Hicks, oligohydramnios. I am the type of person who likes to be informed. In fact, I cannot get enough information. I currently have no less than 20 pregnancy books at my bedside, but I think it's time to get some birthing books as well! I do not want to be afraid of the birthing process, but at this point in my life I've heard a LOT of stories/realities rather. I'm probably the most afraid of the downward spiral that seems to be somewhat typical with Western births: first they induce with Pitosin ... and since they've induced you're in a ton of pain so you need an epidural ... since the epidural is so strong you cannot push because your numb ... since you cannot push the baby doesnt come ... you need a c-section. Okay, so I could be being a tad extreme, but I just have my trepedations about using a hospital to give birth. I'm the type of person who would prefer to see and acupuncturist and take herbs if I am sick, rather than take antibiotics. In fact it's been years since I've taken and antibiotics. I don't even take Advil or Tylenol and tend to deal with the problem rather than the symptom of the problem if possible. Western medicine simply isnt like this. I don't want to fault it ... it's just not my style most of the time. I'm no fool, sometimes Western medicine is absolutely necessary, but I believe it's more rare than most would think. So here I go looking for midwives and doulas in the area! In my "ideal birthing world" I would give birth at a beautiful birthing center here in Santa Barbara in a room with dim lights, nice music, a big tub and knowledgable midwives, doulas and nurses. Things would progress quickly, but not so quickly that I get "torn" (oh my, yes I must write about this). Anyway, at the present time no such place exists. It appears that my choices are at home or in the hospital with a doula. I'm calling around and will start the interviewing process asap. I found a prenatal yoga class on Tuesday, Thursdays and Saturdays which will work with my schedule =). I'm full speed ahead in thinking about having the type of birth and delivery that I want, but I've know full well that I could possibly cave (this is my disclaimer so I don't catch a lot of crap if I do - heehee).

According to my pregnancy book Patito is currently the size of a peach. My current weight gain - 5 pounds.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

13 weeks

Another week has quickly passed by. This was a big week for me. I announced the pregnancy to my boss and my director. They seemed happy for me. My director, Dave, asked, "Do you know how this happened?" haha. It was a relief to tell them because that opened up the possibility for me to start sharing the news with my workmates and friends at Yardi. I shared the news with management on Thursday and with everyone else on Friday. It was a big day and since I work with mostly men (and mostly young men) the reactions were really funny. Men don't really scream with excitement. They say funny things. But I'm seriously very relieved to have the word out so that now I don't have to worry so much about the way my clothes look ("can you tell in this shirt?"). At this point my waist has grown 3 inches and I am up about 4 - 5 pounds. It dawned on me that instead of reading all these books about pregnancy perhaps I should start reading books about babies! I just ordered a couple. Javier's friend, Diego from Spain, was staying with us this weekend and he is certain I am having a girl. I love to get people's feelings about this. Diego, Javier and I talked a bit about names. Hilarious. Diego and Javier both really like the name "Igor" - seriously. hahahahaha. And for a girl they both like the name that their mutual friends, Jorge and Sarah, picked for their daughter, Lucia. That is a nice name, but they don't get the unspoken protocol that you don't steal your friends' names ;-).

Okay, I'm going to attempt to post some photos...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Week 12

We're now in week 12, the time when most believe the risk of miscarriage significantly decreases. I still feel a little afraid though. I've just heard far too many stories/realities that definitely keep me aware that you can just never be too sure. Also, in the beginning I 'felt' like I was growing a lot, but now I don't really feel like I'm growing. I've gained about 4 pounds and have stayed steady for a few weeks. I'm a little less tired, although I still need my sleep. And thankfully I'm not dealing with as much nausea although it does still exist. The most frustrating thing right now is when I get hungry, I am hungry for very specific foods. If those foods are not available nothing else really tastes that great. On the menu at the Muslera's this weeks has been creamy rice, mac-n-cheese, and mashed potatoes.... LOADS of creamy CARBS!

I had a dream last night about the baby. This time it was very clear that it was my baby and he was a tiny baby boy. He was all wet, maybe sweaty, but I was very worried that he was uncomfortable. In my dream we had not yet come up with a name, but I heard another woman call him something. I asked her what she had called him. She replied, "Peterson Anderson, that's his name." I was quick to tell her that we had not come up with a name yet, to which she replied, "Javier told me that was his name." I was so upset because he had never even brought that name up to me. How funny! So this baby now has a few names: Patito, Tito, and Peterson Anderson!

I spoke with Javier's mom on Thursday of last week. Keep in mind that when we speak, we speak in Spanish on the telephone so you can imagine how the telephone conversations go! Anyway, I *think* she was professing to me once again about the certainty that she feels we are having a boy. At this point I'm starting to worry that if we find out we're having a girl that she'll be disappointed so I tried to communicate that to her on the phone. I'm sure either way she will be happy, but I just wanted to try to prepare her. I have to be honest though, at this point I feel that it is a boy as well.... It's very strange that you can get a feeling like this from a little human that is currently the size of a lime.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Jesusita Fire roars

The current fire in Santa Barbara is pretty crazy. It's the closest to downtown that I've seen yet: Due to fire, many many of our friends have been evacuated from their homes. People take evacuations pretty seriously around here simply because homes do burn. It happens quite frequently here. In fact, I believe this is our 3rd big fire in a year. We have friends who have evacuated to our home, Andy, Alison and their 5-month old Emerson. It seems that babies are all around me these days. It's funny because I used to (before I was pregnant) completely embrace being around kids always, but now I feel a bit skiddish. Emerson is delightful. She's super cute, quiet and totally squeezable (she's a 95th percentile baby), but I haven't been rushing to hold her or play with her like I probably would have before I became pregnant. It's strange. It's almost like I want to make sure I don't get all babied out before my own comes along. How silly. I wonder if this is normal?

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Week 11

Back from Oahu and trying to settle into the work groove. I still want to be hanging out on the North Shore though! I had, quite possibly, one of the worst flights of my life on the way over. I forgot my Bose Noise Cancelling headphones and sat right in front of two young boys and a mother with zero control/discipline. Yes, I realize it is ironic that I am choosing to judge her. That could be me soon, but I honestly don't think it ever would be. How can you let your children be so bad?!?!?! They were not babies, mind you. They are old enough to understand, "sit down and be quiet, now." ;-)

Hawaii was interesting on another level as well. I was there to visit with friends (Mandy & Jeff) who have a 3-month old little boy, Pierce. Pierce is adorable and wonderful, but I got to see first hand that he is also a full-time job. I kind of freaked out .... you really do not get a break when you have baby!! OH MY GOSH I HOPE I'M READY FOR THIS!

It was wonderful visiting with friends and we really had a great time in Hawaii. It was too short actually! One of the highlights for me was definitely the North Shore. For Javier, I'm certain it was the surf lessons at Waikiki. I returned yesterday to yet another fire in Santa Barbara. It's always so devastating. I hope this one is maintained quickly, but it's not looking good due to the heat and the wind.

In other news, I'm up to 115 lbs, often hungry and able to wear even fewer of my "normal" clothes.

Friday, May 1, 2009

No swine flu

The girl who sits next to me at works claims that I better get the word out soon because my belly is getting obvious. I don't expect that my superiors will share my joy ... I guess that's why I'm not looking forward to sharing the news. I imagine the first thing that will go through their minds is, "great, she's going to have to be out for a while." Maybe I will be pleasantly surprised. I was planning to tell them at 12 weeks, which will be May 11.

Today I depart for Hawaii. I have to be honest, I am a bit afraid of this swine flu. I try not to buy into this fear mongering that is so prevalent in this country, but apparently when you're pregnant your immunity is very low. If it were just me I wouldn't feel the same way at all, but suddenly it's all about Patito and making sure he/she is always okay and comfy.

Looking forward to surprising Mandy with the news! Back on Tuesday!