I am so glad to have recently unpacked all my books. It was great to get look at my birth and midwifery library again. I am nearing 28 weeks soon, which I always counseled my clients was the turning point from "Oh my gosh, I am pregnant!" to "Oh my gosh, we are really having a baby!". I am feeling that way about now. I have been starting to think about the things I need to do on a practical level to get ready. Being pregnant a second time is easier, in that the whole transition to parenthood is already complete and there are fewer unknowns on that level (at least for us, who are having our second baby 4 years after the first). So I am finding it overall less stressful. As far as preparing for the actual birth, I'll get into a story about that later. But I am in the Swedish medical system now, have found a homebirth midwife, and have a consult with an OB to discuss my homebirth plans next week. I have started doing this meditation, which I am glad I unearthed. I used to give this to all my clients, and I thought I had given away my last copy. It is my favorite meditation to do while pregnant, full of really positive and gentle images. One side is for pregnancy, the other for birth:
I have been hanging out with one of my favorite pregnancy books, "The Natural Pregnancy Book" by midwife, herbalist, and mom Aviva Jill Romm. I am a decent herbalist, and this book is full of practical pregnancy herbal wisdom. It is a great resource with good advice for easing many discomforts of pregnancy. It is like having a midwife at your side all the time. I made the iron syrup recipe in this book last week. It consists of yellow dock and dandelion root decocted into a syrup made with molasses. I have been feeling pretty fatigued lately, so I thought an iron supplement would be a good idea. My pregnancy tea recipe also comes from this book- the Nourishment Tea Recipe. I modified it a bit to my tastes. In a large jar I mix: 2 cups Red Raspberry Leaf, 2 Cups Nettle Leaf, 1 cup Oatstraw, 1/2 cup Alfalfa, 1/2 cup Rose hips, 1/2 cup Lemon balm (for flavor- I substituted for her recommendation of 1/4 cup spearmint, which I am not crazy about), 1/4 cup red clover. In the morning or before bed I boil about 1 1/2 qts water, throw in a handful of herbs from the jar into a tea press, and let it sit at least two hours, sometimes overnight.
This tea has tons of minerals, is a uterine toner, and blood builder. It also has oats and lemon balm which are good for nerves, and the rose hips have lots of vitamin C. I got the herbs from the american company Mountain Rose Herbs. I still have a good stash here, but need to find a good Swedish source for dried herbs. I am out of nettles now.
Here is the growing belly. (I also submitted these photos with my application to the Swedish Bikini team, but for some reason I have not heard back from them! Maybe they do not accept ex-pats, only real Swedes? Who knows. )
Five weeks Pregnant, about when we found out but my pants felt snug already. September 24th, about 15 weeks and starting to feel pretty pregnant.December 4th, 26 weeks, moving around the belly and groaning to bend over!