Dear Emby—38 weeks–the final in utero letter

Dear Embykins,

In 48 hours you will be in my arms (unless L&D has a flood of patients and we get pushed off the schedule).

I am decidedly overwhelmed by this fact.  Excited, certainly, but also fearful and overwhelmed.

This has been an odd week.  I have been scatterbrained, disorganized on a level I have never really experienced, and completely withdrawn.  They say that women about to give birth do pull in on themselves and find their quiet places.  I don’t know that I’ve found my quiet places, but I will say I’ve been distracted and very NOT focused on anything except things relating to you.

This week has been fairly quiet.  Tuesday’s ATU appointment went smoothly, although my blood pressure was still a little on the high side (although not quite to pre-e levels).

On Wednesday, I met with the psychiatrist again.  We decided on my anti-depressant (really, anti-anxiety) regimen post-partum.  I’ll be trying Zoloft at a very low dose for a few weeks and then increase it to the next lowest dose for however long I need it.  I’m hoping to be able to wean off it by six months at the latest.  I know that week 2 through month 4 are the most dangerous, and it gives me comfort to know that along with the talk therapy (that you’ll be coming with me to for the short run) there will be measures in place to keep us both safe.  I feel like with the little bit of medicated support, I’ll be able to deal with the fear and anxiety I feel about becoming a mom, about the lack of control I have in my new role, and my uncertainty at this major life change.

Your crib and bureau arrived yesterday.  Your Dadi and Dada came right over and put the crib together, and then Daddy came home from work and helped with the bureau while I was at therapy.  I had given them directions on how I thought I wanted things, but when I got home (your grandparents were gone, your Daddy had gone back to work to wrap up some things) I didn’t like how it looked and in a fit of pregnant hormonal insanity moved all the furniture around by myself.    I’m sure Daddy would have yelled at me if he thought it would have done any good.

The nursery is almost complete, with the exception of Mommy’s new glider/recliner which should arrive in the next few weeks.  Once it is in there, we have a bit of decorating to do and then it will be ready for you, not that you’ll be sleeping in there for some time.  But it is a beautiful space, and one I’m so proud that we could provide for you.

As of today (Friday) my blood pressure has gone back down to  well within normal range, which makes your Daddy and I very relieved.  And while my body hasn’t done terribly much in the way of progressing towards labor, we were able to sweep my membranes today to try and get something going before tomorrow night’s dose of prostaglandin.

I wish I had something profound to say about all of this.  I really don’t–all I can say is that despite the fear, the anxiety, the nerves is…I can’t wait to meet you.  I want to hold you.  I want to get on with this breastfeeding thing instead of reading about it.  I want to count your toes, to hear what your cries sound like, to see your Daddy hold you, to share our life with you and make a new life as a family with a child.



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One Response to Dear Emby—38 weeks–the final in utero letter

  1. Rachel M. says:

    I want to say something to cheer you on! But I just had a baby in July so I know how anxious you are feeling to wonder what kind of birth you will have to what kind of parent you will be in the first few weeks. So on the giving birth part I just wish you the best of luck and a reminder to pack your favorite creature comforts for the hospital.

    While in the hospital make sure they SHOW you how to breast feed. My hospital did not and it took me almost two weeks to figure out how to get baby to latch on. During those 2 weeks I expressed milk every 3 hours and when I didn’t make enough, I supplemented with formula. She was born one month 4 days early so her mouth was really tiny and she didn’t have the strength of a newborn. Get all the help you can get before leaving the hospital. Also they didn’t show me how to do her sponge bath. I can laugh now at the image of myself and my husband looking through brochures and diagrams to figure this out. It ended up being a traumatic experience because she had her first big cry that sounded like we were killing her. Just be sure to do it right before mealtime so you can comfort her with food.

    Finally it sounds like your husband was a huge help during your pregnancy so I’m sure he will continue to be a big support in the first few weeks. This is really important because you need lots of rest to recover mentally and physically. I found I could do every feeding during the night so we rotated. Newborns will eat every 3 hours or sooner, mine stuck to the 3 hour schedule for 3 weeks. During this time, we split the night into 2 shifts. I would still get up to pump but that only takes 15 minutes.

    I bought the hospital breast pump, the Ameda and it’s been fantastic. I’ve taken it on a business trip and use at work to express milk. It’s really expensive, around $175 but it works really well. I did end up buying a hand pump when I forgot some of the parts of my Ameda on a trip and it was a horrible experience. My hand was tired after 5 minutes!

    I’m writing all this now because I’m guessing the next few weeks will be a whirlwind adventure and you will not be around much on the internet. I’ll keep checking your site though and looking forward to your stories.

    Big hug!

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