We will be welcoming our third child in February, and yes we’re hoping it’s a dragon.
First trimester is a bitch.
It’s been 7 years since my last pregnancy, and I completely forgot how sucky it is. My favorite place to be is in bed. My favorite thing to do is sleep. No caffeine has been extremely difficult as even 10-12 hour night sleeps haven’t been enough for me. I’m having trouble keeping up with my three jobs, let alone laundry. I feel like I’m losing control over my life because I just can’t keep up with it. My days end around 4 o’clock in the afternoon because that’s just how long I can go before I need to sleep again.
Every woman who’s been sick during pregnancy knows that Morning Sickness is a misnomer; it’s actually All Day Sickness. All food has been completely disgusting to me for the past 6 weeks, but if I absolutely had to pick a food I won’t mind eating right now it’d be a tie between spring rolls and cinnamon rolls from the Sourdough Boulangerie. Nothing else looks edible.
Ironically, José and I were planning a fun-filled five weeks without our girls while they were at my parents’ in New York (at “Grandma and Grandpa Summer Camp”). Obviously, that didn’t happen. Whenever I wasn’t working I was curled up on the couch complaining with a cup of ginger tea, and crying because everything made me cry. I missed the girls. No zip lining or bed and breakfast in Boulder for us!
And no, I really do not want to hear any myths or statistics about boys vs. girls, sweet vs. salty, sick vs. not sick. We are hoping it’s a dragon so they don’t apply.
It’s never a good time to have a baby.
For the past several years, as our girls have gotten older, I’ve been pretty much bugging my husband José for another baby. Knowing that he’s always wanted a son, I didn’t understand most of the reasons he would give me for not being ready yet.
“Look!” I would say excitedly every time I found another gray hair, “I’m getting gray hairs. I’m getting old. When are we going to have that baby?”
José once accused me of not being logical when it came to planning this baby. “Logical?!” I spluttered, “Since when are babies ever logical? Maybe back in the days when you needed ten kids to help you on the farm, but come on. Logical, really?! Babies are always an emotional decision. Let’s be real.”
If we’re going to be completely honest with ourselves here, is it ever a good time to have a baby? No. Does it ever make sense? No. Is it ever a logical decision? No. The truth is, it’s never a “good time” to have a baby.
So millennials, if you’re waiting for “the right time” in your life; some magical time when your life is perfect and your finances are perfect and your relationship is fixed and you’ve got all your shit figured out – ha! Do you really think that time will come?
I finally realized this this past winter, and shared my new understanding with José. I think he understood too, because in March he made an appointment for me to get my IUD taken out, and drove me to my appointment in April.
This will be our first pregnancy together. During my first pregnancy with our surprise baby Mia, José was stationed at Camp Casey while I was teaching English in Jeonju, South Korea, so we were a 6 hour bus ride + an hour train ride away from each other, and up until about 6 months I was still trying to convince José that he was actually going to be a Papi. We saw each other twice for about three days total during that pregnancy.
During my second pregnancy with Lizzie, José was deployed when I was about 3 months pregnant, so he missed pretty much the entire fun of watching the belly grow, again.
Poor guy. Now that we’ve made it happen I told him he was probably lucky to have missed my previous pregnancies. This time he has to deal with my constant complaining! And he’s so excited to see the belly grow. He is so in love with his baby. And I am just sick and have kind of had enough of all his picture-taking, and being touched. Ah, the irony.
At least we got past April.
We had discussed and agreed that we wanted to spare our future child from having a Christmas birthday, like our first daughter Mia. I remember when Mia was maybe four years old, a friend of mine posted on Facebook saying that she was writing a blog post about the pros of having a birthday near Christmas. She asked for ideas. I commented the only thing I believed (and still believe) is good about a Christmas birthday: nothing.
I feel bad for Mia every year on her birthday (January 5th). She gets to celebrate herself every year during a time when everyone has wound down from the festivities of Christmas and is now broke and depressed. Of course Mia wasn’t planned so we couldn’t control her birthday, but for this baby we could.
And we did. Of course, we still got pregnant sooner than we expected. In fact, this baby was totally planned, and then unplanned, but by then it was too late. (Look for another post next week where I’ll share more details about this story).
We are looking forward to a free birth.
Planned or unplanned, he/she was meant to be in our lives, and we await the day with great anticipation. I’ve been looking forward to another birth experience for three years now, but now I am even more excited, because I have discovered Free Birth.
My first two birth experiences at a women’s hospital and birth center were not terrible, but they weren’t great either. The more I learn about free birth, the more excited I am to be completely alone and unhindered in my birthing space.
Free birth is unassisted childbirth that is 100% intended. I love that I don’t have to explain to anyone why I’m choosing this, or what my plans are. I love that it doesn’t even matter if I have any plans at all. I love that no one will be there to tell me how to sit, stand, squat, poop, roll over, push, not push, or be.
It really hit me one day when I was listening to my fourth podcast on the Free Birth Society site. I realized that asking a woman to give birth in a room full of strangers is literally like asking her to have sex in a room full of strangers. With bright lights and medical equipment beeping around her. Just no. No thank you. It wasn’t fun the first two times and I won’t do it again. Birth to me is extraordinarily private.
The first question I’ve been asked so far is “Is there a hospital nearby?” I don’t know. And I don’t really care. And it’s not going to be an issue. If something is really that emergent we will call an ambulance, but I can’t imagine a circumstance that could possibly require it.
Free birth babies are born breech, with meconium in the fluid, and after 52 hour labors, and it’s all completely normal. The medical system has pathologized long births and breech births and other normal birthing circumstances that in reality are not at all dangerous.
Many free birthing mothers have given birth breech not even knowing their babies had been breech. In the medical system, a breech baby isn’t even given a chance to be birthed vaginally, where he will pick up on millions of microorganisms for his microbiome he will be sick without for the rest of his life. Instead, he is an automatic cesarian. I feel so sad and sick when I hear stories like that. It makes my heart break.
I’m sure I will be sharing lots more about free birth as I learn more and explore the topic. I plan to be an advocate for free birth, while staying far outside of any zone of judgement when it comes to how other women choose to birth. Although I do see myself wearying of explaining everything to everyone after awhile.
Birthing my daughters has been the most sacred, magical, beautiful, incredible experiences of my life, and I feel honored to have the opportunity to experience birth again. This time from the inside out. I can’t wait. We all can’t wait to meet our new little one. Whether it’s a little brother or a little sister or a little dragon.
See you in February little dragon!