Happy Friday the 13th to all my readers!
32 weeks as of yesterday. For some reason, this mini-milestone is a big accomplishment to me. I know my little brownie is still a bit gooey inside and needs to continue baking but it somehow makes me feel safe to know that if he absolutely had to arrive, at this very moment, odds are he would have no long-term complications. I still find it hard to trust this finicky uterus of mine so I like having a sort of warranty in case she decides to act a fool. Each day we get closer, I feel more at ease. Much more optimistic. This is really going to happen.
Our 32 week appointment was happily uneventful. After measuring 2 weeks ahead at my last appointment and scaring me into believing I was growing a football player in my belly, he measured right on this time. Maybe it was his position? BP is a steady 100/70. Weight is about +33 lbs. All is consistent and all is good.
We had our breastfeeding class on Wednesday night. Let me start by saying that breastfeeding is one of those issues I feel extremely uneasy about. Maybe even more so than labor and delivery. While considered "natural" by society, it seems that many of the moms I know have had terrible experiences, or bailed out because it was harder than they thought. Let's face it: when I hear about cracked, bleeding nipples, it doesn't sound so appealing to me - or to anyone for that matter. So, I feel like I'm facing Mt. Everest by deciding to breastfeed. While I'm not opposed to formula feeding - I was a formula-fed baby after all and I like to think I turned out just fine - I feel like the benefits of breastfeeding are just too good to pass up. Knowing ahead of time how all-consuming it can be and how much pressure there is, I am even more determined to make it work. Call me a stubborn ass but I'm going to do everything in my power to do this. I think the scary part is that breastfeeding is a partnership between my body and my baby. Both parties have to work together to be successful. So, there comes the whole trust thing again. How do I know my body will hold up its end of the deal? What if the baby just "doesn't get the hang of it"? So many unknowns = lack of control = stressed out Kristen. That's my Type A revealing its ugly self...
Anyway, back to the class. I was pretty clueless going in, aside from some advice I've picked up along the way, so I felt like I got my money's worth from it. The LC was not a bottle nazi, which I appreciated. I had myself stressed over whether I should choose standard neck or wide neck bottles, and she clarified that it doesn't matter which one you use, as long as the baby wraps his/her lips around the wide portion of the nipple and not just the short, elongated portion. I received some references as to breastmilk storage (for pumping), diet, safe meds, nursing bras, etc. I also learned 3 holding positions (cradle, reverse cradle and football) that were really helpful. We even got to practice on little baby dolls. My little boy looked as though he was going to feast on my nipple (he had itty bitty teeth) but thankfully, we avoided a live version of Child's Play and I made it through the session unscathed. For the record, I think reverse cradle is my favorite.
All in all, I think we have a plan. Of course, it is flexible - it needs to be - but it helps me to map out my goals. Writing it out gives me something to strive for. I will exclusively breastfeed for the first 4 weeks. I will also be pumping to save up a supply for returning to work. If all is going smoothly, after 4 weeks, DH will introduce a bottle. Hopefully, there will be no nipple confusion at this point. From there, we will alternate boob and bottle and hope for the best. At around 6 months, I will introduce solids and start to wean off the boob. I may continue to pump until 1 year but my initial goal is 6 months. We'll see how it goes. All I can do is give it a try and adjust as needed.
DH and I are also in the process of choosing a pediatrician. My OB has given me a deadline of 34 weeks so I don't have much time. I think I may have found one but I need to set up a time to interview the doc and make sure that we see eye to eye on things. Like vaccines. I'd like to pretty much stay on the recommended schedule but maybe delay the MMR until 18 months or 2 years. I haven't fully decided but it would be nice to bounce some ideas off of a professional and see how flexible they are. I think there should be a balance between physician recommendation and patient-led care, especially when it comes to my child.
On a more fun note, we finally put up the crib. Our spare room is slowly becoming a nursery. I walk by and see the empty crib and the feelings of anticipation build up. We still have alot to do but I can't wait for it all to come together.