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My back is killlllllllling me.

I've always had a weak back, but man, this last week or so...I just cannot get comfortable. It hurts so much. I am really looking forward to my doula working my back out a little bit tomorrow.

I've thought a lot about the pain of childbirth and have felt nervous and also (lately) this sense of let's just DO this already!!! ;-)

The thing is....pain is a subjective thing. I truly believe everyone has a different tolerance level for pain and we don't really know why, exactly. I also have to believe that not every childbirth is going to feel the same, obviously. The position of the baby, the size of the woman's pelvis, the speed of the whole process, etc. All of that has to make a difference.

I plan on going into the process as open minded as possible. I've never birthed a baby, I don't know what the pain will be like, etc. In our childbirth classes, our teacher shared the importance of remaining open minded. We watched one video of a woman who insisted she wanted an epidural, but her labor progressed so quickly and the pain was so much less than she had anticipated, she went ahead and had a natural birth! Then we saw a video of a woman who really wanted to go natural and she just wasn't dilating and she was in what seemed to be terrible pain. She ended up having an epidural and fell asleep. When she woke up, she had dilated and was able to push.

So who knows! I want to go natural, but my feeling is that I will just go into the process and see what happens. Ultimately....I just want to have this baby...SOON!
Delibelly, do it. Anything you can do to make yourself feel more comfortable and better able to deal with it. I hear what you're saying from lots of women, that they expected one thing and got another. So many of them were surprised by the amount of pain they experiences, many of them feel angry about it too. I'll go on to say here though that lots of them give birth again and it's totally different. I've heard many women who had an easy first birth say that a later one was way more intense too so there you go, you just can't know. But stressing about it before it's upon you is a way to make yourself suffer for days and weeks longer than the actual birth takes. I know some of you have a hard time setting that worry aside and I sympathize, I do. Hopefully you all discover something that helps you relax and be a bit more stressfree.

I'm making kid clothes out of old tshirts and have come across a fave that was ruined by either boob juice or spit up so I wanted to let you all know how horribly those two stain. Treat them At Once, never let them sit! My mama's group swear by oxy clean spray, the baby version. It's unscented and apparently works like a charm. I say apparently because I can never ever seem to find it no matter where I go. The regular stuff is heavily scented so avoid it for anything that will be near baby. No fabric softener either, it leaves a residue that can be absorbed by skin.
Which brings me to something else. Little ones are highly sensitive to scents, if you've got air fresheners, febreeze, scented laundry soap, scented body products that you use, I strongly recommend setting them aside for unscented versions for the first few months at the very least (forever if you can, artificial fragrances are linked to a vast array of health issues). Baby learns to identify you by scent very early on mom so smelling like yourself as much as possible is a great way to increase bonding and keep babe safe from inhaling irritants. If you get smelly you can use a bit of baking soda in your pits or dab with rubbing alcohol to kill odour causing bacteria. Take care with deodorants and especially antipersperants if you'll be nursing.

I never got hives but boy did my skin get weird, I still have sun spots on my face that I'll have to have cosmetically lightened if I ever want them to go away. Avoid the sun while pregnant, don't get it on your face at all if you can help it.

A note about vaxing, it might be worth it to check with members of your immediate family and see what reactions, if any, their kids had. Issues run in my family, that's a big reason why I don't do it.

Zelda, my fingers are crossed for you. I hope your little one is in a good position when the time comes. Have you considered a chiropractor? I swore by one for both pregnancies. I had regular massage with the first too, both made a huge difference for me.
Pepper, I had a great chiropractor, but he was expensive and my insurance didn't cover it, soo... :-(

I am eating a lot....I thought as you got close to the end your appetite was supposed to diminish??
Darn it, that sucks. Could you afford to go one last time to alleviate this particular back pain you're having before you go into labour? I hope you get some relief from the doula massage at least.
zelda, you sound like me before I delivered - my attitude was that I was going to try to go drug-free, but I didn't know what to expect and I didn't want to be too militant with myself if things didn't work out that way. I think that attitude made me less tense, to be honest.

Actually, you also sound like me in the trouble sleeping department. By the end I was getting up every 2-3 hours to stretch my achy legs and hips, and rarely if ever got up after 8:30 a.m. because I just hurt. Just try to take a lot of rests during the day if you can.

Hope your back starts feeling better. Have you tried acupuncture? I hadn't tried it until I was pregnant and my acupuncturist friend had offered to do this treatment that is supposed to help ready the body for labor (seems to have worked nicely for me). mr julie went in when I did to treat some carpal tunnel pain and said he felt almost instant relief when she put in the needles. He just went back to her for help with his chronic tension headaches and found the same relief. Re: cost, look for a community acupuncture clinic. My friend does sliding scale fees and I think there are a lot of clinics that do that.

Re: vaccines, we're doing the regular AAP-recommended schedule and that seems to be working out fine. I'm kind of hyperaware of the previously-rare diseases that are cropping up because of lack of vaccination. Before I was pregnant I had to go on a course of antibiotics because our friend with whom we'd stayed for Thanksgiving that year turned out not to have had bronchitis, but whooping cough. But I also think the alternative schedules make a lot of sense too.

Our fun debate before baby came was about whether or not to get him circumcised. In the end, we decided against circumcision, but I remember mr julie being super-frustrated not to be able to find many sources of facts about the whole thing that weren't biased in favor of or against circumcision. So I hear you on wanting some unblemished facts about vaccination.
Julie, thanks for the support! I have been very careful with my sleeping and sitting positions and my back is feeling a little better. I do think my massage with my doula should help...but if my back continues to hurt like this after the birth, I will consider some other treatments in addition to massage. (By the way, my doula's fee includes a postpartum massage and training in infant cool!)

Julie, we also have decided not to circumcise. Our pediatrician was born in Eastern Europe and you could tell he was very supportive of our decision (most likely because he isn't circumcised himself!). My dad was born in South America and wasn't circumcised although my brother was...of course back in the 70s they circumcised everyone (in the States anyway).

Do you have any tips for caring for a noncircumcised penis? Most of my mom friends have girls. Seems to me there isn't much "care" involved as it will probably clean itself...but any info would be helpful. THANKS!

Two days till my due date!
Yay for uncircumcised penises! My husband is British (thus, not circumcised) and, thankfully, it wasn't even a consideration. My one bit of advice is to wash as you would any other body part. DO NOT be tempted to pull back any skin; the foreskin is sort of "attached" in childhood.
Just jumping in real quick (sneaking a break at work) to recommend: What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About™ Children's Vaccinations. It's an unbiased and honest look at vaccines. The title may imply a biased ďconĒ approached, but itís not at all. My naturopath recommended it as a well-balanced review of vaccines, whatís necessary, whatís dangerous etc. etc. My naturopathís approach to health care is multi-dimensional and she does "semi" vaccinate her own children, so sheís not biased either way. I agree that everyone has a right to their choice etc. etc. We're vaccinating Finn but are not necessarily going to get every single vaccine and on the same schedule.

Also, Zelda Ö about non-circumcised penis care Ö Finnley isnít circumcised, which weíre very happy about, but one of the first things I said to my best friend when I found out about him was ďHe has a penis Ö I donít know how to clean those.Ē Ha ha. Iíve now changed more poopy diapers than I can count, and the one thing that may ďdifferĒ from girl diapers, is that the poop gets caked in every possible crease and fold around the penis and scrotum. Ha ha. Itís truly amazing. As someone else posted, you just clean the penis, but donít try pulling back any foreskin, as they are attached until later.

All things are great with us at home. Iím back at work and Mr. F. is at home with Finn. We are all happy and healthy and doing great together. Best wishes to everyone on the board.
Hooray for dads at home! Fookie, I forget, is Mr. F there permanently with Finn, or is this his paternity leave? I think it's been so important for mr. julie to have alone time with Henry. You can just see how much they have kind of makes me melt. So glad to hear that you're doing well!

Yeah, re: the non-circumcised penis, basically the best advice I've gotten is to leave it alone for the most part. The poop does tend to get all over everything, but a gentle wipe of the area usually does the trick. Also, Henry's penis was a little red for awhile and so we took a break from the wipes and just used a soft cloth with plain water to clean it, which seemed to work fine. Oh, and I so had the same reaction at first: "How do I clean *this*?" Sometimes you'll see a little bit of white collect at the tip - you can just gently wipe that away.

Also, I know from changing my niece's diapers that the poo gets everywhere for girls too - they just have different creases. And you have to be really careful to wipe from front to back (but us girls know that anyway).
You have to be careful to wipe from front to back eh? Why freaking BOTHER?! I'm telling you, the crap is already in the cookie, right up there in every single crease, crevice and cranny there is so you just go ahead and wipe in any direction you please. You can't very well get it into more spots than it is already, believe me.
Man, am I Ever glad she's potty trained. I don't know how baby girls don't get a yeast infection from day one, it's insane how much poop has been all over her pooty. I just don't get it. But I was thinking the other day that this might be the reason for the hymen, I can't think of anything else that's good for at all.
I did tell you all about rubbing the newborn baby bum with oil of some sort so as to avoid that first meconium poop from sticking like glue? Remember that one else you'll be scrubbing the bum with frustrated vigor.

Little man is uncircumsized, I didn't feel comfortable making that sort of irrevokable lifelong decision for him when I could just as easily leave it up to him for when he's ready to decide. Chances are he's not going to want it any more as an adult than he would as a newborn though, why would he? Gah, what a thing to do!
My mom told me a story about hearing a baby screaming that bloody cry of agony (you will know the one once you have or have lived with a child, it's the one that says "Unbearable pain" loud and clear) while she was in hospital having my bro. It was a wee baby boy having the end of his willy lopped off. Needless to say, not a proceedure she opted for.
You don't disturb the foreskin for the first few years but by 5 it should be retracted. Just encourage the little mister to pull it back each time he takes a pee and every time he's in the bath and that should do it.
So long as a male takes care to clean himself and has safe sex, the removal of the foreskin is totally uneccessary. Even if he doesn't take care with cleanliness or safe sex, it still only increases the chances of infections etc. Not by a ton either, just an increase. Better I think to just teach our boys how to deal with their willies, eh? IMHO anyhow.
Oh, and one way to deal with a poopy bum is to just forgo the wipes and stick that butt right into the tub or sink for a soapy rinse off. I liked that more than wipes for a real mess anyhow, even 2-3 wipes doesn't take off all the smell, it's not really "washing" anything after all. I'd wipe out the sink after with a lysol wipe because, ew, poop, but that was an easy fix and a super happy baby bum to boot!
The crap is in the cookie...hahaha...pepper, that made me laugh.

No one ever told me to wipe front to back until I was! My mother wiped back to front, and so did I. Oddly enough, my mother has never had a UTI. Neither have I!

Now in college a women's health worker at student health explained front to back when I went in for my first exam and birth control pills, but up until then I had never done it. Isn't that weird? Now I do wipe front to back,'s weird that I never had a UTI before then and neither did my mother.

My doula worked my back and hips today and I feel LOADS better. She felt me and said Elliott is definitely engaged and she says my pelvis and hips feel "ready" and I should be birthing any day now. She worked some accupressure points in my feet that can get things moving if the body is ready.

Tonight I've had some indigestion and serious Braxton Hicks, but they are not too painful and nothing regular. My doctor's appointment is tomorrow morning, and I am hoping for some news that I've started to dilate...or something!
good luck zelda! i keep logging on, hoping NOT to see your name for a bit... ha ha.

mr.nick is jewish and his mom asked us if we have a boy will we "you-know" with his "you-know-what." (i hope grandma gets more creative with body part names soon.) the jury is still out, yet mr.nick is not particularly observant but will likely be most comfortable if baby is "you-know"-ed.
If you will you-know his you-know-what?!?! OMG, hilarious.

You should play dumb and force her to say foreskin and penis out loud.

So...just got back from the doctor's and............STILL NO PROGRESS. Despite some pretty intense contractions last night that came about half an hour apart for two hours (then they stopped), I have not dilated at ALL and am still only 50% effaced.

Boo hiss!

My doctor suggested red raspberry tea or Mother to Be Tea from Whole Foods, walking, sex, etc. but she did say he gut was telling her she was going to end up inducing me and she wants me to be prepared for that.

It'll be a bummer on some level if I do have to be induced, but at this point.....I just want to have this baby!!!

If I do get induced, I will check into the hospital the night of the 9th and they will induce the morning of the 10th.

Come on, baby!!!!!!!
Break out that scrub brush and wash those floors mama! Then have some sex. Then do some yoga. Then go for another massage. That last one is just because, heh.

Remember that normal gestation is between 38 - 42 weeks. You don't have to go for the induction but... a bigger baby is a bigger baby to push out.

Check out the hip mama thread in LTAS once you have your gabanzo beans, I'll post some stuff up in there about small people.
About to go make some raspberry tea...Pepper, the thought of trying to have sex at this stage literally makes me laugh out loud. I don't think we could even figure out how to do it. I AM HUGE!!!! :-)

What a day. We had torrential rain all last night, a drain backed up in the basement and spilled onto our brand new (ok a year old but still) carpet. Stinky, wet, gross. We are at least pretty sure it's just nasty old drain water and not straight up sewage. Blecccchhhhh.

Exhausted, but wanted to pop in and thank everyone for the vaccine resources. As soon as I get this drain/carpet situation under control, I am hittin' the books (or the web as it were). I did get something done today, and the little buggo officially has a pediatrician! She was my ped growing up, and I'm super excited to have her. We'll see what she's gots to say on the vax front as well. . . .

Pepper, mentally filing all your excellent tid bits away . . . . especially the bit about the first poo . . . . I can't imagine bubs being very happy about having meconium scraped off her wee behind for 20 minutes . . . .

Zelda, hoping your time is a comin' soon! Dilate baby dilate! Stay as comfy as possible in the meantime, and sleep if you can.

Off to dinner now . . . .and tomorrow to my now weekly midwife appt. Contractions haven't been so bad, hopin' for no cervical changes. We're doing a repeat of the fetal fibronectin test, and if it's negative again we gets to resume having sex!!!! Woohoo!!!!

I was going to put this in the mama thread 'cause it's about a slightly older baby but I already have posts in a row there so I'll stick it up in here. Anyhow, this is a good thing to start young.
If you let a baby play with keys (or a pen, or a cell phone, or a necklace, or whatever) ONCE that baby will want to play with all the keys (etc) they ever see. Forever. Don't let people say to you "Oh, it's ok, I don't mind." when you're trying to stop something you don't want your kid doing, don't give in to the pressure to be polite about this, seriously, you will regret it. Take that person's keys (or whatever) away and gently explain this to them, that the baby can't tell the difference between keys he or she can have, and keys he or she can't have and that it ends up being upsetting and troublesome so heading it off at the pass by restricting all keys is the best plan for all involved (both my mom's automatic car door opener thingies have been ruined with drool, the baby couldn't see gramma without wanting to chew her keys) . I'm not kidding you, my mom lets the baby draw on things, tear up papers, chew on stuff that she doesn't mind being destroyed and then later on, even though she has known not to do those things before because I had her trained and because she can't tell the difference between things she can ruin and things she can't, she eats a library book or draws with crayon all. over. the. house. Can I just say, hurrah for the magic eraser because today I wore one out? dry.gif
Thanks for the tip, Pepper!

So last night contractions woke me up at 1:15 AM and went on sporadically until 5:15 AM when they slowed they've stopped.

I lost part or all of my mucous plug last night, too. I called the OB on call just to be sure...she said no need to come in unless the baby hasn't moved in an hour or the contractions come regularly. I've read losing the plug could mean real labor starts in a day or so...but it could also still be days to come!

Why are my contractions only coming at night?!?! Let me tell you, whether they were real or practice, they were pretty strong last night!
I havenít posted in ages, and wow! So much to catch up on! I have been lurking, just to check if Zeldaís popped yet wink.gif

Iím now 17 weeks and 3 days. I have a small, neat, but unmistakable bump, a load of new bras (none of the old ones fit) and lingering nausea and exhaustion. Iím now familiar with maternity jeans (elasticated waistbands are heaven!), alcohol-free beer (not as bad as I was expecting) and everyone trying to guess if babybird is a boy or girl (based on the size and location of bump, my complexion, what Iím eating and all manner of other weird stuff).

Iím not due for another scan until 22 weeks, but I did hear babybirdís heartbeat at my 16 weeks antenatal check-up which was lovely Ė like a herd of stampeding buffalo!

Aphelendra, thatís one impatient little Missy you have there! It sounds like youíve had a scary couple of weeks. I hope your appointment goes well today.
Actually Zelda (and all first time expectant mothers) most labours start late at night. This was something my midwife told me with little O. and sure enough I was calling her at three in the morning.
Thanks for all the advice before. I really appreciate it. And just because I have to tell someone, someone who doesn't know me IRL preferably smile.gif, we just had sex for the first time ever without any kind of protection! Woohoo! biggrin.gif
So I've now been in prelabor for almost 2 days.

Last night I had pretty intense contractions - enough that I was really having to breathe through them. I lost more of my mucus plug. I thought for sure the real deal was upon us.

But around 6 am the contractions stopped and I was able to sleep until 8 am. (That was blissful.) Now I'm up with no contractions. Just feeling crampy.

Elliott is moving around, so I know he is okay.

I just want the real thing to start SOON. I can't believe my doctor said this could go on for days. WTF!!!
Zelda, are you still here? tongue.gif
Didn't You Wash The Floor Yet?! Seriously, being on your knees rocking back and forth can really help. You don't need to actually wash the floor, you can just get into that position and rock rock rock, keep your pelvis parallel to the floor, not butt up as that's the position to slow labour. You're doing it right if you work up some sweat. I know you said sex is out of the question but a big O right now might help you out some wink.gif .

With the little man I didn't notice losing my mucus plug at all and when my water broke it just felt like I was peeing a lot and couldn't stop. I keep getting up and then sitting back down, I thought I had lost all bladder control. I had to call a mama friend and ask her if I might be peeing for the rest of the 1.5 weeks I had left. She suggested waters and I was all "No way, it's too early" DeNial! Thank goodness for those giant pads you get to use for the bleeding afterwards, that meant the difference between being able to get off the pot at all! Make sure you have some on hand, just in case. You don't want to be trailing a stream of waters behind you everywhere you go that day if your waters break a little earlier than true labour sets in. My water broke at 9 or 10AM and he was born around 11 that night, labour really set in about 5PM.
With the girl I noticed when I lost the plug but my waters didn't break until I was in full labour (thankfully on the pot at the time!). It was good, it made things happen at that point. Labour started with her around midnight and she was born by 3 though I had been having mild contractions all day.

Funnybird, that was my least favourite thing, the guessing about the sex. As though the sex of the baby has anything at all to do with what you're eating or how you look. It's so stupid that, I found it irritating to no end. And the unsolicited advice, man, people just have a nerve telling you what to do and touching you in stores and such, wierd! I am a natural ice princess from a distance though so thankfully I didn't get groped in public by strangers all that much.
Hang in there , zelda, my third pregnancy I went through "false labor" for weeks. Real, rythmic contractions (NOT just Braxton-Hicks) that would leave me exhausted. I got so used to being in false labor, I wasnt' certain it was really time when the REAL show got started. But eventually, baby does make an appearance (hopefully this is going on for you right about now)! biggrin.gif
My annoyance at the guessing of the sex had no bounds . . . . good grief. Not one theory I heard had any medical truth to it. I can't believe people place any stock in those wackadoo theories. My favorite was that if you hold a little boy on your lap, and he doesn't squirm or fuss, you're having a girl. If you hold a girl on your lap and she is calm, you're having a boy. Ha!

Catsoup, I will never forget my first unprotected sexual encounter . . . . so very strange.

Zelda, so sorry about the prelabor limbo. How maddening! I hope it picks up soon . . . .

Had a checkup on thursday . . . . Still 1 cm and 80% effaced, no major changes there. Fetal fibronectin was negative, thankfully. But still advised not to have sex until 36 weeks!!!!!! Poor Mr.

Ah well.

Will be checking in frequently. Go Zeldy go!
Hmmm, I spent plenty of time holding little nephew (14 weeks old) last week, and guess what? He squirmed and fussed when he was hungry or needed changing, and sat still when he was content. Spooky! My brother was the first to weigh in with the 'wackadoo theories' when I called him to tell him I was pregnant. He told me the foetal heartrate one (more than 140 bpm for a girl, less for a boy), which was correct in the cases of his two sons. It sounded plausible (and brother is a doctor!), but when I looked it up on the internet it turned out to be just as much of an old wives tale as all the others! We do plan to find out babybird's sex at the next scan, but that's not for another 4.5 weeks; thankfully I'm still finding all the speculation amusing rather than annoying for now.

I thought I felt movement for the first time today, but in retrospect it was probably just indigestion.

Aphelendra, that's good right? Not the sex bit obviously (boo!) but that the little lady is staying put for now.

Elliot! Hurry up! Stop driving your mama crazy and come out already!
No Zelda since the 4th, she's into it girls. Let's hold hands and pray for a speedy delivery for her and little boo.
Are you feeling excited too? I just get so stoked for you guys. I can't wait to hear the news...
thinking of ya zelda and can't wait to hear the news!

i totally felt baby movement last night before going to sleep. i don't think it was a muscle twitch or gas. s/he's really there! i was lying on my belly. that's OK, right? i'm at 19 wks.
I'm pretty sure it's ok to be on your belly so long as it's comfortable. I was never a front sleeper until I got pregnant and then I'd wake up with my face in the pillows all the time!
Nickclick, I'll have to try lying on my belly and see if I can get babybird to give me kick! I only stopped doing it a few weeks ago because it hurt my abdominal muscles, which is a shame because it's my favourite position to read in bed. Now I have to sit propped up with pillows like an invalid.

I wonder if Elliot is here yet? Thinking of you Zelda...
delurking after lurking with intent for weeks following the pregnancy stories and getting more and more excited about the upcoming bust babies!

good luck zelda!

Nick, woohoo for baby kicks! I was definitely feeling movement by that time, and yeah, it's a little indistinguishable from gas . . . . Just wait a few more months and soon you'll be able to see the baby click moving . . . . alien style. Eek.

Curiously long absence for Zelda . . . . she must indeed be into it. Excitedly waiting to hear from her!

Had our first shower yesterday. Lots of goodies were gotten . . . . Advice to everyone though, do not spend your own money on hooded towels . . . . I received 16 hooded towels yesterday. ha!
can't wait to feel kicks too, that's awesome nickclick!

also can't wait for my 20 week u/s...we are pretty sure we will find out the sex! next week!!

(((((((((((good thoughts for zelda))))))))))))))))))

poor mr. aphelendra indeed! he'll be so ready for it though and appreciate you all the more. biggrin.gif How many showers are you having, btw?

on another, pointless note, I'd really like some Oreos about now. Too bad I'm too lazy to go out and get them!
After three days of laboring including horrible back labor and 45 minutes of pushing, lil' Elliott is here! Birth story to follow, but he's precious and looks like a little old man. Right now he is enjoying his first swing ride.

I will only say this...epidural epidural EPIDURAL and doula doula DOULA. AAAAAAHHHHH.

Couldn't have done it without both.
Congratulations! Welcome lil' Elliott! Enjoy your swing.
I can hardly wait to hear your birth story. I'm weeping as I type. I'm so insanely excited and happy for you.

Big hugs to all.
CONGRATULATIONS ZELDA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

can't wait to hear the details!
YAY! Congrats to you Zelda! I just knew it was happening, I'm so glad your little peanut is here and happy.
And shoot, back labour. I had a feeling considering the position and your recent back pain. That's no fun at all girl, so glad you had that doula and the option for an epi. That's JUST what it's made for, what a relief that you could have it.
How exciting, a good delivery with healthy mama and bebe is just the best news, is it not? *wipes away a tear*.
Hooray, zelda!!!! I've been thinking of you this week and wishing you a safe and healthy delivery. Welcome Elliott!

And that back labor is no joke. Congrats and enjoy your little man! Can't wait to hear the details when you have a little time to share.
Woo hoo! Zelda and Elliott! Congratulations. Looking forward to hearing more...

Can I divert some good vibes in the direction of London please? We're seeing Architect Boy's oncologist this afternoon to discuss the results of his latest x-ray and get his blood tested.
Good luck, AB!

Will take a moment (for as long as Elliott is in his swing) to fill y'all in.

Labor pains began Wednesday night as my mucus plug started to fall out. Continued in intensity through Saturday night. Basically Fri and Sat night are a blur of PAIN. I had no idea how bad the contractions could feel. Either I had an intense labor or my pain tolerance is lower than I thought. I tried all the breathing and exercise techniques I'd learned in class which helped, but man...that back labor is called back labor for a reason.

After two false starts to the hospital (I was only 1 cm dilated each time), Sunday morning around 3 am I almost passed out in the tub from the pain it was so bad. I was in a different head space than I had ever been, crying and completely out of it but at the same time trying to remember each's true the pain leaves you because even now as I type this I can't recall exactly how it felt.

By the third try to hospital I was 4 cm dilated and crying out for an epidural which was administered quickly and felt sooooooooooo good. OMG, the best feeling on Earth.

My doula arrived (she'd been walking me through exercises over the phone as I labored at home) and the L and D nurse was there and amazing, too.

They had to start me on a Pitocin drip to speed up contractions, but by 4:30 pm I was 10 cm and ready to push. When the doc told me it was time, I started to cry, so full of emotion. Mr. Z cried too.

The pushing went the opposite of the labor.....super fast. He was out in less than 45 minutes and it was relatively easy, although they did put me on oxygen as I was feeling lightheaded and nauseous during the pushing.

Elliott came out alert, awake, cried just a little, and immediately tried to nurse. I almost felt like I had left my body. Giving birth is, hands down, the most intense experience I have ever had.

Hospital stay is bum is sore, my nipples are sore, but we are home now. I am feeling every emotion. Crying, happy, confused, scared, elated, confident. They come in waves which I think is normal. I will be taking a break from posting as we all adjust. Can I just say, howvever, that having a supportive partner is so amazing. Mr. Z is a very hands on dad and for that I am so grateful.

Much love to all and thanks for all the support...will pop in when I can!!!

Congratulations Zelda!
Congratulations Zelda & Family!!!
Congrats, zelda and family! Thanks for sharing your birth enjoy riding the roller coaster of new parenthood. I am so happy for you and your family. Take care and know we're all thinking of you!

funnybird, thinking good thoughts for AB. Let us know how it went when you're ready.
congrats. zelda, mr.z and elliott! so glad he's here!
Congratulations, Zelda! And welcome to the world, little Elliott!

Funnybird, thinking positive thoughts for you and AB.
Oh Zelda, I'm so delighted to hear that Elliott has arrived and that your delivery went well. Congratulations to you and Mr Z, and well done you, that back labour sounds tough. Good luck with your first few weeks of mama-dom and enjoy the babymoon and getting to know your brand new son. Wonderful news.

Funnybird, you're on my mind and I'm sending you and AB all good wishes.
Good luck to AB and funny! I'm rather newish about these parts, so I'm not too sure about the details/history (don't feel the need to explain all over again, I can always go back and look) . . . . but any trip to an oncologist warrants a whopping amount of the feel good healthy vibes . . . . they're a comin' your way!

Hope everything is well with Zelda and new baby Elliot, tis so quiet around here without her . . . . Sorry for the back labor, but thank goodness for the epi. My midwife is big on using these kinds of 'tools' appropriately. I think three days of back labor is a damn good reason if I ever did hear one . . . . Zelda, if you are around I am just wondering how far apart your contractions were when they sent you home at 1cm??? Sounds like you had a ton of pain even before things were really moving . . . . Eek!

To all the second tri busties . . . . get ready for some third trimester klutziness . . . . in the last two weeks I have broken my right pinky toe and twisted my left ankle badly enough that I haven't been able to get around too well. Youch.

Tomorrow is the second and final baby shower for us, this one a co-ed bbq thrown by Mr.'s fam. Now if only I could walk . . . .
enjoy the shower, aphelendra, and take it easy.

my mom booked my shower this week for the oh-so-cheery date of september 11....
Question for breastfeeders:

Is it normal that my nipples are still really sore one week out? No mastitis - my mom is here and she had that, and says there is no way I have that. It is just not that painful or even red.

But man, I'm tender. It's tender when he first latches on, and then when the milk starts to flow it stops hurting. But that initial latch on really aches and I have to grin my teeth and bear it.

How long does this initial pain last?
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