First Trimester


December 17, Wednesday. Journal Excerpt.

Week # 13

Well, it has been a few weeks since I wrote. We are very happy in our new home, but I am still trying to get used to these lower levels of energy, drive, motivation, and inspiration. I keep thinking “I don’t feel like myself,” and then try to replace it with “I feel exactly like my glorious pregnant self!” I said the other day that I felt like a creative void, as though any creative energy had disappeared from me with a flash of magic. My Dad replied:

“What if you are engaged in the most creative act possible? Creating a new being!”

Of course! A much better way of thinking about it, and it is as though every last bit of my energy is going towards the wonderful event of baby building right now.

I woke up this morning feeling not so positive, feeling mad about all the things I am not doing and think I could/should be doing. So, I wanted to focus here instead on all the wonderful things I am doing!

Beautiful and Wonderful things I do for Baby and Me:

~  Have a green smoothie every day

~  Take folic acid, Vit. D, Vit. B12

~ Vitamineral Green (this is what I took in place of a pre-natal vitamin supplement)

~ Drink raspberry leaf tea and nettle tea

~ Get lots of rest

~ Go for long walks

~ Stretch and do yoga occasionally

~ Cuddle

~ Spend lots of quality time with friends and family

~ Read about pregnancy and childbirth

More Beautiful and Wonderful things to do when I wish:

~ Do yoga more often and walk more often

~ Swim (by the end of my pregnancy I was swimming 3-4 times a week)

~ Sew comfortable clothes

~ Meditate

~ Do kegels more regularly

~ Accept dreaminess and appreciate pregnant energy

~ Journal more often

Yes, of course I am having a beautiful pregnancy. I feel much better now, hey, it is OK that I took four days to go get the laundry from the basement and that I had to put “go get laundry” on a to do list to motivate myself to do it! I am pregnant! I am going to enjoy this time and trust that my edge and creative (mental) flow will return.

We watched a movie with Finn while also watching the snow fall outside. A beautiful day.

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December 2, Tuesday. Journal Excerpt.

Week #10

Today is a very special day, today we got to hear our baby’s heartbeat!!! Oh sweet dear little big heart, how much I love you! What a magical experience, I will never forget it, hearing my child for the first time. Both David and I had eyes full of happy tears.

We are all moved into our beautiful new castle in the sky and we love it. I feel more excited than I’ve ever been to be here in Victoria, this city really seems to have come alive in the past few years since I’ve been away. A lot of new, hip, creative energy and happy, shiny people filling the streets. And of course I am adoring being so close to my sisters, and Dad and Constanze. It also feels so good to be living in a small space again, I love being in a cozy womb of books, flowers, and love.

Here are some pictures of our little home! (click on me)

We had a first meeting with a midwife today (we met with three different midwifes before choosing one) and it was wonderful to sit and talk birth and babies. It makes it feel so much more real, being pregnant! It was at the end of our meeting that the midwife, Uta, offered to listen for a heartbeat. She said that at this stage there is a 50/50 chance that we’d be able to hear the little one. So I lay down on her couch and pulled up my shirt and immediately when she put the Doppler to my stomach we could hear it loud and clear! Uta said “Oh, this one certainly isn’t shy, its come right up so we can hear it.” We could also hear other sounds that she said were kicks, an active baby too, it kicked four times while we listened. She also placed the Doppler so we could hear my heart beat, twice as slow. I have two hearts beating in my body right now, AMAZING!!

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Photo by Ashleigh

November 16, Sunday Journal Excerpt

Week # 9

Ugg. Everything is making me feel queasy today. Every raw thing I’ve eaten makes me feel sick, blah!

David and I celebrated our 1 year anniversary yesterday and it was lovely. We spent all day together, computer free, starting with morning cuddles, green juice and papaya breakfast in front of the fireplace.

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That night….I could not sleep. I had eaten 4 little squares of chocolate at the movie (James Bond: Quantum of Solace, not a good movie to watch as a pregnant one, far too much action) and I think this was the main reason, but I’ve also noticed that on days when I go on long walks my body is more restless at night and I get so much energy building in my hips I can’t lie still. Last night I lay there feeling my heart racing, feeling claustrophobic, feeling like my body was going to explode with energy! I finally got up and came downstairs and rolled out my yoga mat and started moving and stretching to release the energy. That felt better. David came downstairs to see if I was OK and then went back to bed where I finally joined him and was able to fall asleep around 4:30am. Feel very tired today, perhaps why I also feel so queasy?

Chocolate and pregnancy = NEVER AGAIN!! Nope, not for me.

(NOTE: After the first trimester was over I was quite fine doing small amounts of cacao and enjoyed it very much)

Little June Bug is 9 weeks today! What is interesting is that I am not gaining weight, I just don’t seem to have much of an appetite, I have actually lost about 4 pounds. Food and taste are very different for me right now. It is hard to explain but I feel like I have both a heightened sense of taste and like I have wool in my mouth, preventing me from tasting anything. It is like being able to taste every little flavor in your mouth so distinctly that you can’t tell what the thing you are eating actually tastes like. Sort of like hearing many clear notes but not hearing the music. (NOTE: This passed with the first trimester as well.)

Oh I can’t wait to go to bed tonight!

November 9, Sunday. Journal Excerpt

Week # 8

A wonderful Sunday spent at Ma Rineke and Pa Brad’s house. Breakfast there with my cousin Cecily and her boyfriend Andrew, and their friends Patricia, Ben, Nicola and Ryan, who were all visiting from Vancouver. It was Waffle Sunday at mom’s house and so I had ½ a waffle (whole grain with all kinds of seeds and goodies added) with coconut butter on it and fruit salad.  Patricia has just finished her medical program at UBC and is now doing two years of practicum, starting off in obstetrics so there was a lot of talk about babies. A Child Is Born by Lennart Nilsson has been sitting on my mom’s living room table so that she can check in to see how big June Bug is with the passing weeks, so we all had a good look at it. Patricia said that the one thing she has seen to make a huge difference in the way that birth unfolds is education: if a woman knows about the process of birth, it is likely to go as nature intended, if not, things can get intervened with pretty quickly. She told one story of a woman who wanted Patricia to look up her vagina to tell her if she was going to have a boy or a girl while she was in labor! That woman ended up with a C-section.

Once the Vancouverites left, we had a late lunch with Ma and Brad, and then made nut mylk ice cream in their new ice cream maker (I like it better made in our VitaMix! Yet another appliance you don’t need if you have a VM.) Came home happy and tired and I went straight to bed.

November 8, Saturday. Journal Excerpt

Week # 7

I spent much of yesterday watering good seeds for a beautiful, joyful labor.

Spoke with several midwives and made several appointments for when we move to Victoria. I see that one good reason to book your midwife early around here is that their schedules fill up quickly! I must have called about 8 different practitioners, and half of them are all booked up for June babies!

I also read un-assisted birthing stories and watched several videos on-line. It is AMAZING what we have access to on the WWW! It is also amazing to me how much fear the medical community seems to spread around the birthing process. Don’t fall for it! Search out the information that makes you feel excited and empowered around birth! I feel so blessed to have the information and knowledge about birth that enables me to feel excited about it! I am so excited to open my body and soul as a channel for this new being to enter through.

My dear baby, I think about you all the time and I anticipate with joy the day we will look into each others eyes. I am so happy you are here with us now, growing beautifully in my womb. I am honored, sweet one, to be with you. I love you, your devoted Mother, Katrina.

November 6, Thursday Journal Excerpt

Week #7

Just got home from a great time in Vancouver celebrating Oma’s (my Dutch grandmother) 85th birthday.

The night before her birthday party, we all played her favorite game, Scrabble, and then David and I gave her a card telling her she was going to be a Great-Oma. Oh she was so happy! She has said that it is her last wish in life, to become a Great-Oma, and her eyes filled with tears at the news as she squealed in her Dutch accent “Rrr-eely?” I was her first grandchild, and she thinks it is very special that her first grandchild is having her first great-grandchild. She said “I can’t wait to hold the little baby!”

The day of her party was lovely, so much love, joy, respect, and celebration for this woman’s life was expressed by all of her children, grand-children and close friends. David and I stood up to announce our pregnancy when the gifts were being passed around. I was left feeling like we got a lot of blank stares and luke warm reaction at first, my cousin Cecily seemed to be the only one who looked happy about the whole thing. I thought “oh no, maybe this was the wrong time to share our news”, but then the congratulations started to come in and I realized that many people there had hearing problems! They all came up saying “I couldn’t hear what you were saying, but congratulations!”

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Announcing Baby Rain! Look at Oma’s big smile!

I also got some veiled and not so veiled comments from certain relatives that it was a “little early to be telling everyone, don’t you think?”

Well, David and I had discussed this one, and feel that if something does happen to end this pregnancy, we would much rather that our friends and family know about it and are there to support us and share the experience. I certainly wouldn’t want someone I love going through a miscarriage alone! I think it is known now too just how common an experience it is, to miscarry, and that it is nothing to be ashamed of or to keep secret. We need to share and support each other! So no, for me, I did not feel that it was too early to tell close friends and relatives.

(We did wait until the second trimester to share our news with our internet/blog friends and those not directly involved in our lives day to day.)

My Oma, who has been experiencing Alzheimer’s in recent years, never forgets about the baby on the way and always asks how things are going, bless her.

October 30, Thursday Journal Excerpt

Week # 6

I’ve felt tired, weak, and nauseous all day today. I don’t feel like I’m eating enough but nothing appeals to me, I don’t really want to eat yet I feel hungry and dizzy so I know I need food. I waited too long to eat this morning and felt like I couldn’t even stand up, David had to make the Green Juice!

In happy news, Mom called today to say that she and Brad (her husband) have talked about us staying in the cottage for the birth and it is a YES!! Hooray! When ever I think of giving birth there it is all white light. While nothing is set in stone and we will see how the pregnancy progresses, I feel that to give birth in a cabin on a mountain on an island would be amazing.

I’ve been reading books today that sent me into feeling like I am not nearly “on-top” of things with being pregnant! Many of the books suggest finding a midwife or doctor while you are still in the conceiving phase, certainly as soon as you discover you are pregnant, and I haven’t even been to see anyone yet! My mom put it all to rest in her gentle way, telling me that she didn’t go to see a midwife until she was three months pregnant with my brother Joe, and that yes, she felt exhausted too when she was pregnant. I was also worrying that I was not eating enough, and she told me a story of some friends of my Oma and Opa who for most of their first pregnancy were living as refugees with very little to eat, and towards the end of pregnancy traveled by boat form the Philippines to Canada where they gave birth to a beautiful, healthy, intelligent little girl.

Ah, so good to have things put in perspective!

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