Tag Archives: pregnancy

IUD- Mirena

Well, it is inevitable as a mother of two and a wife who really does not want more children at this stage because of sheer exhaustion and finances, we were bound to make the decision on how to best prevent unwanted or rather, unplanned pregnancies. The best option in my mind was for my husband to get a surgical procedure. After all, it really should be the man’s responsibility too… but that is an invasive option. My sister in law is an OB-GYN so we did discuss it with her and although rarely talked about among friends and colleagues, I started asking about what birth control method others used. Overwhelmingly, among women who had kids, the Mirena was the most popular and came the most recommended by doctors as well.

So I did my research on both the Paragard (10 Years) and Mirena (5 years). Paragard has no hormones which means no adverse affects whereas Mirena, in about 5-10% women, causes weight gain, mood swings, and other issues associated with hormones. In any case, I decided I did not want periods anymore – I had become quite accustomed to not having them after 2 kids and 2 full years of nursing with each one so…. the Mirena appeared to be the best choice.

There are so many rumors and blogs out there by single, young women who have never had kids on how painful it is and the horrible effects of Mirena especially insertion. For me, it was a breeze and I wish I had not been so nervous to get it inserte. There is 1-minute of cramping and that is about it and some blood which is fine because you are on your period anyway. In any case, I write this 1-day after the Mirena but I will update the blog as appropriate to share my experience on it and with it. In the meantime, if you are going to get this IUD, take Ibuprofen (400 mg) one hour prior to your appointment and then just go home and relax. They do a follow-up appointment 6-weeks after insertion so hopefully all is going well by then or I will update this blog.

Happy Family Planning!


100% all Natural

I am prefacing this blog by stating that this is my experience and of course, from what little data I have gathered, I do believe this to be the case. Of course, if you have some evidence to dispute the below, I would love your comments.

Recently, I had my second child and therefore, decided pretty early on in the pregnancy that I was going to 100% natural this time. I did more data gathering this time, hired a doula (which I should have done the first time), and delved into the effects of epidurals, medications, and other medical interventions during child birth. I was amazed to learn that if you take any of the above before you are in active labor, that labor and delivery could be slowed down significantly. Moreover, anything taken before active labor can pass directly to the baby and thereby effect the baby’s development too. This time labor and delivery was a lot quicker and while there is no pain-free labor and delivery, I have to say I was better prepared. I knew what labor pains would feel like and I was able to manage pain better. I knew about the progression of labor and the dilation and knew anything taken before I was at least 5 cm would slow down labor and possibly harm the baby. I also had hired a doula to help with pain management at the hospital and advocate for me. All in all, I have to say this time around, the entire experience was better and my recovery was 10 times quicker. Last time, I remember not being able to walk properly or do much for over 2 weeks post-partum. This time, I was up and ready within hours and the next day, was on my own, able to breastfeed a baby who was eager to feed, and was ready to head home.

This time my labor and delivery was 100% natural. Last time, I got to the hospital too early and to help me sleep and manage pain they offerred me morphine. I was only 1 cm dilated so of course, that slowed down labor – granted, the pain still continued and the meds did nothing for the pain. I was groggy, exhausted, and of course, the same can be said for the baby- she was also taking in the morphine and that may have contributed to late development for her as she did not feed right away, lost a lot of weight and to this day has issues with feeding and sleep. My sister-in-law reports different experiences with her births too. For the first, she took an epidural. I am not sure when but from how she explained it, early. While I am not associating all medical intervention with slow labor and delivery, post-recovery issues, and baby development issues, I think there is something to be said about 100% natural child birth and all of the above. Her second son was born free of intervention and from what I hear, a better eater, a better breast feeder, and even a better sleeper.

I have noticed the same this time with my second child- she is a better eater, is gaining weight, and a much better sleeper. Not that my first child was a terror- she was not. She was a great baby too but this one is just doing better and was more alert from the time of birth. I would love to do more empirical and statistical data gathering on this matter because of my own experience on the issue and I have even talked with my husband about becoming a doula part-time in the future to spread this knowledge and experience. I would love to help other women who are having children to go natural – it is truly the best thing for mother and child.


The Labor of Love

I write this one week post-partum because I needed distance from the entire experience to gain perspective. They do not call it “labor” for nothing and the thing is, it does not end after the child is born, the “labor” of love continues throughout life once a child is born. From breastfeeding to sleepless nights caring for your child when he or she is suick; from hospital and doctor’s visits to sleepless nights wondering where your teenager is; from worrying about how you’ll pay for their education to sheer tears at their wedding, parents go through a lot but this blog is about the LABOR of love that mothers experience.

My labor of love has seen me through natural child births now- one two years and last week, my new baby girl’s birth. It was quite the trying experience and even though it was shorter, it certainly wasn’t any easier. I knew a little more what to expect this time and right down to the birthing room, I was comfortable with the hospital experience more this time than last. Still, it is scary and until your child is born, it is hard to know what will happen or what “turn” the labor and delivery would take. Fortunately, we got through this one okay as well. I had a lot of help and guidance and was surrounded by good people especially my husband.

But, alas, the pain does not end really after the baby is born – if you are having a second child, this is just the beginning. We had our two kids a bit close together so while our toddler who is almost two does not understand really what is going on, now we have introduced night-time feedings and wakings into our routine too. This combined with our toddler who has poor sleep habits makes for quite the hellish nights and leave us all looking and acting like zombies. For the first few days, I was ready to send our newborn back into the womb because it was a lot safer there for her and for me. Safer for her because our toddler is a bit rough with her new sister and safer for me because I would not have to face how tough it really is to care for a newborn and a toddler at the same time. But alas, my “labor” of love continues through the 1am nursing, the 430am crying of both children, comforting one through nursing and the other by letting her hold a lock of my hair. I know that dads “labor” too- they do things daily that show they love their child and make sacrifices but moms seem to carry the burden – from carrying the child for 9 months to labor and delivery; from nursing to staying up late nights comforting the child- nothing compares to moms.


No rest for the weary

We recently had a hospital stay for two nights after the birth of our second child. We learned from our first stay two years ago how the entire operation worked so this time we were not just better prepared for the hospital “lingo” but also better able to handle ourselves at the hospital. Hospitals are no place for rest. It seemed that Murphy’s Law applies at a hospital stay more than anywhere else. Right when you fall asleep, someone decides to take your vitals, or right when your baby falls asleep, someone decides you need to undress him or her so they can check the vitals on the baby. What? Couldn’t you do that in another few hours?

Despite the signs we put up on our door even the hospital-provided ones, people still found ways to disturb sleeping, labored-weary mom and newborn baby. The first night, we knew what to do – “for the love of God, take the baby to the nursery already!” It was almost midnite. The nurse threatened us, “well, if you do not feed the baby, we will give her a bottle in the nursery.” My response after being a second time mom was…. “so what? feel free to give her as many bottles as you want. I am not worried about any type of confusion.” I was more experienced and wiser because of the last time. In the end, the truth is, bottle or nipple, the baby turns out just fine. And because of what happened last time, I knew better. Needless to say, we did not get much rest. I was in pain all night and when I was not in pain, I had stomach issues because there was no food available after I delivered. I did manage to get about 3-4 hours of sleep and I guess that is what I have to look forward to from here on out.

The next day was more of the same- they wheeled in the baby around 630am and took my vitals and checked me. We must have changed like 10 nurses and each one had their own thoughts and opinions on things and even though my birth plan stated not to ask me my pain level (1-10) every two minutes, no one paid attention. So they kept irritating me with questions like that all the time. It was quite annoying. Then, the signs went up – do not disturb, shhhh napping, but it made no difference. People would stroll in and out of our room like it was okay. The picture lady came by; the folks who run tests on the baby’s cord, and so on. It never ended. My doula came to visit when we were napping and the nurse always popped in and out. There was no end to the disturbances and napping was out of the question. That night though was the kicker. It was Oscar’s night and I was fading fast. I needed sleep and they were not taking the baby to the nursery. The nurse told us there were not enough people in the nursery and they were understaffed so they could only take her for 3 hours. I was going delirious from lack of sleep and at 1130pm I finally went to the nurses’ station and BEGGED them to please take the baby to the nursery because if I did not get sleep, I would lose my mind. It worked! They rolled her out at midnight and did not bother us until 650am when they returned her. I slept good and got 6 and a half hours… not much but let’s face it, every hour counts from here on out.

Hospitals are no place for the weary to rest. You would think it would be but it is not. In the end, you have to just hope for the best, put your foot down, and be persistent. I did not let them guilt trip me into thinking there would be nipple confusion or that I had to breast feed at night. I was not going there again and so I was wiser. In the end, it is how you handle the staff and your mindset that will determine whether you get any rest at the hospital or not. More importantly, communicate with the staff and do let them know your expectations. There is a lot of turn over so you may have to repeat yourself several times. Happy Hospital Stay!


Playing the Waiting Game

What they say about babies is absolutely true, unless of course you have scheduled your induction or C-section – babies come when they are ready and that is how God and nature intended it. Since Thursday, I have had some early signs of labor and thought this past weekend (President’s Day) was it. Alas, the long weekend is not over it but there are no signs today. Needless to say, everyone got excited and the office even started a pool. So far, no Baby. But that is okay. Sure, it was the LONGEST weekend in recorded history for my husband and my friends but, babies come when babies are ready.

My due date is still 4 days away anyway so we patiently wait. Don’t get me wrong, I will be excited to see the baby and find out the gender and all that but I am in no rush- you can’t rush a good thing that is for sure and if the baby is not coming, there is a reason for that – I think that this baby is not quite in the right position as I learned on last Friday. This baby is in the posterior position whereas my first was anterior. Posterior is quite painful to deliver, I have learned. It is when the baby’s face faces out, thus the spine or back of the head of the baby rubs against the mom’s spine during labor/delivery and causes back labor which is quite painful. OH JOY! Needless to say I am doing some exercises to try to alleviate this and hope the baby turns. I am hoping for the best because back pain can be quite trying for someone trying to have a natural birth. In the end, labor pain is temporary so that is a good way to look at things.

As we play the waiting game, and my husband keeps his cell phone handy at all junctures, I am both excited and nervous. I am not anxious to have the baby out early and am quite nervous about what is about to transpire but, remain optimistic and happy. Now, if I just did not have to pee every 10 minutes, life would be good!