Getting ready for baby

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We are expecting our third baby any day now! It’s interesting planning for a hospital birth after planning two home births. Before there were so many supplies to buy, the apartment to prep, the birth pool to have set up, stacks of towels to have on hand, all kinds of things to protect the bed. This time there is still prep, but it’s limited to just a few bags of things to take the the hospital, and none of it is really all that crucial – it’s nice to have my own drinks, clothes, baby things, reading material…but really, if we pull in to labor and delivery with nothing but my purse, it’s not the end of the world. But one perk of making it to my due date (almost, of this writing) is that pretty much everything I could want is packed and ready to go.

On the other hand, with a home birth, if our other children were to stay here, it would not be that big of a deal. But when we’re leaving the house and our very young children for possibly two days, there are a lot of contingencies to prepare for! What if we leave in the middle of the night? Or during the day? What about their things, their carseats, people needing to get in the house…I think I had to prepare more for them than for myself and the new baby. But now PJs are packed, Grammy is ready to come down, we have a host of friends willing and able to take care of them, we have house keys and notes about the kids for wherever they might go. And now we just hope they don’t freak out if they wake up in the morning and a friend or neighbor is sleeping on our couch!

This has been by far my easiest pregnancy. It’s been really remarkable. With James, I had such terrible sciatic pain I would crawl in to bed and try not to cry as my muscles and nerves burned. I could hardly walk across our tiny apartment. I had high blood pressure that I only brought down enough for a home birth by going on modified bed rest. With Miriam I had the sciatica along with terrible pelvic separation pain which made it impossible to get dressed on some days, or get in the shower, or into bed. I felt crippled. I also had the same blood pressure problems, and pregnancy induced carpal tunnel that caused me to wake up several times a night with no feeling in my arms from the shoulder down. This time I’ve had no pain of any kind, no carpal tunnel, and my blood pressure is totally normal. I keep hearing about how subsequent pregnancies get progressively harder, but this has definitely not been the case for me!

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