Thursday, February 25, 2010

A tiny detail

I have had a little detail from the last days I held Lola in my belly swimming around in my head. I just keep remembering that after we went to the hospital and DIDN'T hear lola's heart beat my stomach went all floppy. I couldn't feel her in there anymore. I knew she must be but her tiny lifeless body was no longer squeezed into a tight space with no room to move. A pregnant woman's belly is usually as hard as a rock. I was full term but my belly was no longer as hard as a rock. You would never have guessed there was a baby in there.

I am not sure why I have been thinking about this, I have been feeling pretty happy. This year is shaping up to be a new start, a better time for us. I dont have the words 'my baby died' on repeat in my head anymore. There is room to think about other things too. I wonder what Lola thinks about this? Does she think we are forgetting about her? We are not. Jackson just asked today what are we going to do for Lola's birthday and we started to think about that as a family. I take moments out of every day to stop and think about her. Lola is everywhere for us.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

A story of triumph, power and love. And a happy ending.

This is Millie's birth story. It is a lot like Lola's birth story but a lot different too. I am posting it here exactly as it was written a few weeks after her birthdate. I am posting it today because it will be two years on tuesday since it all happened.

Background: the birth of my son two years ago was very long and hard and involved a cascade of interventions. By the time my son was born he was put on my chest and I felt nothing but exhaustion, I couldn’t touch him or even look at him and then before I knew it he was whisked away. When I fell pregnant a second time I knew that I had to do everything I could to not let that happen again as ultimately I felt that I hadn’t prepared myself properly for that birth and that was the reason things happened as they did.

On the 22th of February I was 15 days overdue and had two days to go into labour naturally or I would be induced, something I was desperate to avoid. That last week pregnant I tried everything to get things going but on the Friday we decided to up the intensity. My acupuncturist told me about the ‘golden three-pronged approach that they’d had 100% success with – acupuncture, castor oil and a stretch and sweep. She went really hard on me with the acupuncture (it actually hurt) and told me to do the castor oil that evening. I was a little scared about doing the castor oil so I actually only ended up taking about a quarter of the recommended dose and decided I’d do the castor oil properly the next day after the stretch and sweep. The small amount of castor oil I had I’m pretty sure had no effect and so I went to bed at 11.30 that night.

I woke up at 12.30 with a full on stomach cramp that lasted for about 30 minutes, it wasn’t agony but I felt like I had a stomach bug and thought it was the castor oil but turns out it was the start of my labour. After the first 30 minutes the contractions settled into a pattern of about 3 minutes apart and were pretty full on right from the start. I found I had to be standing and leaning against something to feel somewhat comfortable and I was also making a lot of noise through them as that really helped as well, just moaning really but it helped. We rang the birth centre and found out it was empty which was really good news but I decided I wanted to stay home longer as I didn’t really believe I was making progress and wanted to avoid stalling labour. Bren busied himself packing everything and talking me through the contractions, he was so supportive throughout the labour.

Eventually at about 4am I realized that maybe we should head into the birth centre as since I had to be standing to get through contractions the 40 minute car ride could be fairly intense! So we rang to tell them we were on our way. What I learnt in the calmbirth classes really got me through that car ride, I went totally to another place to get through contractions but it was so possible and I was feeling good about how I was coping. When we got to the birth centre I didn’t recognize the midwife and I had in the back of my mind that I didn’t think she was a birth centre midwife but she seemed fine with the idea of me having a water birth so I wasn’t too worried. Plus I had Jenn coming (my support person and student midwife) and I had total trust that Jenn and Bren could support me through it. I still didn’t think I was very far along so refused an examination as I didn’t want to hear “oh you’re only 1 cm dilated.

I got into the bath and found that to be a great place to labour as it allowed me to really go into the birth zone although it took me a while to find a good position. Prior to getting into the bath I’d been chatting between contractions but that all stopped once I got in and I just got down to the business of laboring. I really didn’t feel like things were intensifying, I certainly felt like I was coping really fine and the thought of any drugs never actually entered my mind. It also helped so much that my support team kept telling me how well I was doing all the time and just generally looking after me. I also really lost track of time and honestly the time was flying.

All of a sudden, I guess about 7.30, I started to feel like pushing! This was a very pleasant surprise as I still didn’t really believe I was progressing. The pushing sensation was actually really satisfying to begin with and I was excited that I’d made it that far. That stage of labour was really good as well as I still got breaks in between contractions where I could rest. But I felt like something wasn’t quite right, it felt like I was only getting so far and then bubs was getting stuck. The midwives wanted me out of the water at this point so we could try a few different positions to push in. By this stage I wasn’t upset that my daughter wouldn’t be born in water, I just wanted to see her! Things moved really quickly from this point on, I ended up on the bed, on my back with my legs pushing against the midwives. I sensed I bit of panic in the room at this stage and the midwife told me she would have to do an episiotomy. I didn’t really have time to care at this point although I did groan a big Noooooo! At her.

At 8am on the 23rd of February Millie Patricia was born. It was the most awesome feeling ever to have my daughter put onto my chest. My husband and I were both crying and kissing and hugging and he kept telling me how amazing I was. It was the best feeling ever and I felt so awesome that I had done it. I was so in love with her from the first moment I saw her and the best part of all was that she stayed laying on my chest for two hours after the birth, no one tried to take her away and I was able to hold her and look at her. Staying in the birth centre was lovely, Bren and I spent the day laying in bed together looking at our daughter, Jackson came in for a while and played and kinda checked Millie out from a distance and I had a midwife all to myself to look after us. I think the things that made the birth everything I wanted was my two fabulous support people Bren and Jenn and the calmbirth classes that we did.

Friday, February 19, 2010

A change a month

The tomatoes and rosemary that we put in last month are looking fab! The strawberries not so much, pretty much dead!

Composting has been an easy change. Our friend told us that it is helpful to have two bins actually. So when one is full you can leave it to decompose and make all that good stuff and start filling the other, handy hint! So we did that this month, we upgraded our composting system. Did you know that composting is good to do even if you dont need it for your garden? I didn't know that but apparently even the natural stuff that goes to landfill has a hard time breaking down and creates Methane in the atmosphere. So composting is helpful for that and super easy too!

Also I was feeling a little uneasy about the extra water we were using to water our new plants so we bought a little mini-tank to help with that with a view to one day upgrading to a big tank.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Your kidding right?

Are you still not over this? You're still talking about it?

I'll never be over it. How could I ever forget about the sweetest angel I ever had the pleasure of growing in my belly for 41 weeks. She will be in our hearts forever. Talking about it, mentioning her name, that is how I keep her memory alive. She gave our family many gifts, especially that life is too short to be unhappy, to be putting your life on hold, to be waiting for {something} before you start living your life. We are forever grateful to Lola for what she gave us. So, no, I'll never be over it, I'll never forget, I'll never stop talking about her.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Up Side

Project "My body is a temple" is going great guns. Hmm maybe not the right wording. It is going great but so slow. It has had a knock on affect into other areas of my life that I wasn't quite expecting.

* I am feeling a renewed faith in my bodies abilities to do what I need it to do, to work in the way that it is meant to work. I didn't realise how much I hated and resented my body for being the cause of Lola's death and also for being that constant reminder of my failing. I am finally (after nine months) back to the weight I was before Lola's pregnancy. I still have a way to go but my body is responding in the way I expect it to to all the hard work I am putting back into it.

* I am feeling like I am worthwhile. I deserve to have 30 minutes a day to excercise even if that means someone else in my family has to miss out on 30 minutes of my time. I also feel like I am worthy of spending some of our tight budget on some of the things that I need. I worked out the other day that it has been 14 months since I last had a haircut.

* I have energy. It feels so good to have energy. Energy to play with the kids, energy to excercise, energy to catch up with friends on a weeknight, energy to be organized, energy to keep up with the housework.

* Our budget is benefitting too. From my organization and my energy and my motivation. I have been cooking yummy, healthy food for our lunches and dinners and we have hardly eaten out.

* I feel happy. I have for a few weeks now. I think it is partly excercise endorphines but also because of all of the above.

* My maternity clothes are getting too big! Another constant reminder of my failings and sadness was not fitting into any pre-pregnancy clothes. I have been wearing maternity clothes everyday since Lola was born except in the last week or so. Yippee!

The down side

Actually it isn't so much a down side as a challenge I need to overcome. I have really isolated myself in the last month. I have only attended social gatherings twice in all that time because I just dont trust my willpower when confronted by temptation. I slipped up both times. I dont know how to overcome this issue. I know isolating myself is not healthy so I am working on this.

I'll be back tomorrow with an update on project "A change a month" (towards a more sustainable lifestyle)


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Lovely Love Story

By Edward Monkton

The fierce Dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice. Although it was cold he was happy in there. It was after all, his cage.

Then along came the Lovely Other Dinosaur.

The Lovely Other Dinosaur melted the Dinosaurs cage with kind words and loving thoughts.

I like this Dinosaur, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
Although he is fierce he is also tender and he is funny.
He is also quite clever though I will not tell him this for now.

I like this Lovely Other Dinosaur, thought the Dinosaur. She is beautiful and she is different and she smells so nice.
She is also a free spirit which is a quality I much admire in a Dinosaur.

But he can be so distant and so peculiar at times, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.

He is also overly fond of things.
Are all Dinosaurs so overly fond of things?

But her mind skips from here to there so quickly, thought the Dinosaur. She is also uncommonly keen on shopping.
Are all Lovely Other Dinosaurs so uncommonly keen on shopping.

I will forgive his peculiarity and his concern for things, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur. For they are part of what makes him a richly charactered Individual.

I will forgive her skipping mind and her fondness for shopping, thought the Dinosaur. For she fills our life with beautiful thoughts and wonderful surprises.
Besides I am not unkeen on shopping either.

Now the Dinosaur and the Lovely Other Dinosaur are old.
Look at them.

Together they stand on the hill telling each other stories and feeling the warmth of the sun on their backs.

And that, my friends, is how it is with love.
Let us all be Dinosaurs and Lovely Other Dinosaurs TOGETHER.

For the sun is warm.
And the world is a beautiful place.

The End

Friday, February 5, 2010

What's up?

Welcoming: new readers who have found my blog this week, Hi!

Thinking: about getting crafty this weekend

Cooking: Cupcakes for a christening this weekend

Appreciating: this little reprieve from summer today

Enjoyed: searching the mountain for an op shop I have heard about even though we didn't find it. It was all foggy and a bit spooky but so pretty too.

Looking forward: to Jackson's second basketball clinic in three sleeps. Every morning he gets up and asks if it is Monday yet. ♥

Looking: for ways of increasing my income without too much more time away from the kidlets. (Anyone need a Primary tutor?)

Loving: getting two blogging awards in one week!

Planning: A dinner out with friends (if we can all co-ordinate schedules!)

Listening: out for Bren to get home so we can start our weekend

Trying: so hard to stick to weight watchers even though losing weight is soo slow these days.

Wondering: what to do with the 'cute as' fabric I found this morning for a bargain price.

Thinking: How thoughtful my friend Melissa was for gifting our family with little wooden name puzzles, including Lola ♥

Hiding: from the world lately in our little sanctuary at the bottom of the mountain.

Happy: to have been married to my husband for 3 years now.

Thanking: my lucky stars that I found this medium to realise the thoughts my mind is working overtime to create

Frustrated: at the spaghetti sauce dried onto Millie's face that she wont let me clean. She is the same hue as an oompa loompa!

Wishing: I had a crystal ball that allowed me to see what is in store for us.

Feeling: a little melancholy today, Lola was born exactly 9 months ago.

Hoping, Hoping, Hoping

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Making Progress

Kids being back at school means that I am back at work! The year for us starts with a couple of professional devevlopment days before we get to start working with the kids. I can't wait to get back to the kids but it has been quite nice spending some time with my colleagues, I dont get to see them very much. My boss called on me as an 'expert' yesterday! I am not an expert, just been there longer than most, it was quite nice though I must admit!

We have some new colleagues just starting this term, they are really nice. I never know whether it is ok to mention Lola when meeting new people. To be honest I was a bit scared on the first day about what questions I would be asked and how I would answer them so I was a bit withdrawn. The second day I spent with them, the fact that I had a baby 9 months ago did come up. I talked about what happened and I didn't cry! That is a first for me! It was really nice to be able to talk about what happened, to not feel like I had to hide Lola's existence. They were super nice too. They asked me questions and didn't look scared to talk to me about it. One of them had also had a baby die in her family too. I think this is going to be a good year folks, a year for healing and happiness, mostly!

Beautiful Blogger

For me? Why Thankyou! You are so very kind! And I feel honoured that you like my blog!
My friend, Megs, tagged me with a Beautiful Blogger award which I am pretty chuffed about but you know what is even more exciting than that? She had a baby yesterday! I cant wait to hear the details. You should check out her blog too, it is really pretty and the next post is bound to be wonderful!

So part of the award is that I need to share 7 things that you may not know about me, here goes;

1. I moved to Melbourne 7 years ago! (WOW, I cant believe it has been that long!) I moved from Perth, my home town. I adore Melbourne and doubt I will ever move back.

2. I have had to go to court once. I had to testify against a housemate I had when I first moved to Melbs. I only lived in the house for 6 months and I moved out because that particular housemate was pretty awful (Oh the stories I could tell you about her!). I had one other housemate too (she was lovely) in that house. We both had to testify against her as she put in a fake insurance claim saying the house we lived in had been robbed. It was a very icky experience!

3. I worked at Hungry Jacks when I was 15/16. I was really bad at it and always got people's orders wrong. The bosses were really mean and I felt so sick before every shift because I was so nervous about getting into trouble. I quit after 6 months.

4. Before having babies I was a youth Drug and Alcohol Clinician. I loved the job but it wasn't very conducive with having a young family.

5. Next week is our 3rd wedding anniversary. It will be our first that I am not pregnant!

6. I am turning 32 next month. Argh, how did that happen!

7. I hate watching the news! It makes my anxious.

I get to tag seven more people now , ok here goes;

1.Lover of Little things

2. life love babies

3.Pepperberry and Co

4.Still Life with Circles

5. Spilt Milk

6. Gee Your Brave

7. Little red riding cook

Ooh they are some of my favs, go ahead and check them out. It is a real cross-section of blogs. Lots of different, inspiring topics.