The right side of the bed

So as I’m lying here with not much on TV and no energy for reading I thought I’d catch up on an overdue post.

While trying to get comfy on my single hospital bed last night I thought about our new sleeping arrangements at home. Since we got married I’ve always slept on the left and Col on the right. The left side of the bed is what you see first so during my time a neat bedside table and clean floor greeted you on arrival. Col’s side wasn’t visible unless you really made an effort to see it, in which case you’d find clothing chaos on the floor and toppling towers on the table. So you see, this arrangement had aesthetic benefits too.

However, two months ago I read that the baby gets more nutrients of you sleep on your left side and so I told
Col that we needed to swap for a while. Col was very fond of his side of the mattress but it was the loss of his secret messy corner that really hurt the most! And as I’ve had to accept the mess that greets me when I walk in, it’s been sacrifices all round.

We were warned that changes would need to be made for Speckle, so this hardly comes as a surprise. I’m just glad that this one can be reversed in a few months time!

Prison break

This post comes to you from the labour ward at Pretoria East Hospital. I had a stomach ache yesterday afternoon which didn’t go away and decided to come and get it checked out just in case. Turns out I was having mild contractions so I was admitted last night and will probably spend tonight here too.

The doctor’s not sure why I started having contractions. Sometimes it just happens, although usually because of a bladder infection of which I have no sign. Maybe after the ante-natal classes two weeks ago and child development seminar last Saturday Speckle just thought we were ready for him!

The doc is putting Speckle firmly back in his place (excuse the pun) with some medication that I’m taking every four hours. Between that, general noise and nurses checking my vitals this place is good practise for parenthood – I didn’t get much sleep last night. They have also given me a steroid injection to boost Speckle’s lungs (common procedure when there are early contractions) – we can’t help wondering if this will also boost our recent day dream of raising an Olympic gold medalist!

The measurements this morning (5:30am this morning) show only one Braxton Hicks contraction and I’m feeling much better although these meds are
making me rather floopy. Speckle is also doing well. But I haven’t seen the doc yet so will have to see what he says.

Of course the irony is that my bag wasn’t packed (been waiting for Woolies to bring out some summer pjs) and even though I had plenty of time to do something about that yesterday, the thought that ‘it was probably nothing’ meant I didn’t. So I’ve been emailing poor Col lists, and needless to say I’ll be packing that bag first thing when I get home – summer pjs or not! Furthermore I was half way through making dinner so I literally left pots and pans scattered around the kitchen – again thinking I’d be back soon to finish up. And I’d spent the afternoon sorting out some filing so the lounge looks like a paper bomb went off.

But on the bright side the preauthorisation from my medical aid meant that they didn’t make Col put R60 000 on his credit card before letting us through the door as was the case in Jan 2011 after the white water rafting injury I had. So that’s progress! And Col had just finished his round of golf yesterday afternoon (shooting his best nine since March). All in all I’d say it’s been a good trial run.

Is information always power?

This is the question a shell-shocked Colin and I have been asking ourselves since attending ante-natal classes on Saturday. After six straight hours of information overload (including videos on natural and caesarean births) I’m leaning heavily towards the ignorance-is-bliss school of thought! Continue reading

The mommy gene

As I continue with the third trimester, the maternal instincts are really coming into play. I find myself talking to Speckle quite a lot, admittedly often in a cutesy-cutesy voice. The nesting thing has kicked in and no spot in the house is safe from my organising plans. But it goes further than these expected changes …

I don’t know about anyone else, but my mom always seemed to walk into the lounge at the absolute worst spot in whatever TV programme Trev and I were watching. It honestly could have been completely innocent, but as soon as my mom arrived, suddenly everyone started swearing, there was some crazy love scene or the plot took a turn for the downright crude and inappropriate. In the last few weeks, I seem to be the trigger for this. Col will be relaxing in front of the tube and as soon as I wander into the room, the cringe factor begins. I try to ignore whatever is happening on the screen, but that only makes it worse and inevitably I end up saying something like, ‘Isn’t there something else you can watch?’

I always wondered how my mom’s timing was so bad – now I realise that she didn’t even have to try!

Our babymoon

Col’s dad has a flat at Simbithi Eco Estate in Ballito, and we decided to pop down there once Col got back from Scotland if the opportunity presented itself. Two weeks ago, everything started falling into place and 11 July saw us driving down to the Natal north coast.

The break could not have come at a better time. In the 10 days since Col had come back from Scotland, I had finished work, my parents had stayed with us for a week and Speckle had his baby shower (which I’ll post about when I get some photos). As a result, we’d been passing each other like ships in the night and I had been struggling to slow down the pace I was operating at. We spent four idyllic days going for long walks in the estate or on the beach, snoozing and watching movies. Over the weekend that we were there, the rest of South Africa suffered under the worst cold front of winter, while we enjoyed 25 degree days. We did as little as possible and it was wonderful!

On our last day we went out for lunch at a restaurant on the beach, and were amazed to see two whales just beyond the breakers. I have never seen whales on the north coast, and the locals were as enthralled as we were. They were too far away to get a good photo, but we could clearly see their tails and plumes of spray as they dived and resurfaced.

We drove back on Monday 16 July and since then Col has hit the ground running. August, September, October and November are always busy months for him and this year looks to be no exception. The few days away broke the hectic cycle I’ve been in, and I’m managing to set a much slower pace for myself as we get ready for Speckle.

Two down, one to go

This week finds me at 30 weeks so I’m well into my third trimester. (Speckle is the size of a cabbage apparently, but I’ve lost serious faith in that app.) My pregnancy continues to go really well. I’m carrying pretty comfortably, although I am starting to feel a bit more tired again. Speckle’s kicks have become really defined movements and sometimes I can actually feel his little foot (although it might be an elbow or knee). I absolutely love feeling all his little movements, but he’s pretty shy and invariably stops his aerobics as soon as someone else puts their hand on my tummy to try and feel them.

Speckle will be making his appearance in eight to ten weeks, and it’s interesting how differently Colin and I are handling this fact. Col can’t wait for him to arrive! He feels like this pregnancy is never ending and just wants a baby to hold now. I, on the other hand, am feeling slightly panicky because there is so much I feel like I need to do before he arrives (get the nursery ready for one). But as Col says, we are only 75% of the way there, so there is still lots of time for me to get through The List.

It’s been nearly three weeks since I stopped working and that’s also taking a bit of adjusting for both of us. It’s strange for Col to go off to work every day while I’m still lying in bed (although I do get up to make him breakfast and pack his lunch). I’m taking a while to adjust to the fact that I have whole days to get things done, and don’t need to pack everything into evenings and weekends. As this realisation sinks in, I’m learning to pace myself. Yesterday I spent a whole hour just reading a magazine – how’s that for progress?

As I said, I’m carrying pretty comfortably, but I have started to waddle a bit in the last two days. (That might be because I started Pilates on Tuesday though and have been seriously stiff since then!) Speckle has also started settling down on my sciatic nerve, which means I’m getting shooting pains down my right leg from time to time. My lower back is often sore and I unconsciously find myself adopting that classic preggie pose of supporting it with my hands. But it’s all part of the fun I guess!

So while it’s adjustments all round in the Rip household at the moment, we are now earnestly preparing for our boy’s arrival and are amazed at how much we both love this tiny person who we don’t even know yet. Excitement is running high!

The catch-up is coming

I’ve had two and a half weeks of being a lady of leisure now and they’ve been busy, busy, busy! But instead of bombarding you with all the news at once, I’ve decided to split it up a bit. So over the next few days, you can expect posts on:

Right now I have to dash out to get groceries, run a few errands for Col and meet some friends for lunch. Oh, and I’m starting preggie Pilates this afternoon. See – busy, busy, busy!