Our Journey to Sleep Training

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

So relaxed"Sleep like a baby"… you mean, "Scream, suck on a boob for half an hour, nod off, wake up in 45 minutes, and repeat", right? Cause that’s how it was for us for 4 months, pretty much. I don’t think you can even bring up the words "sleep training" in a roomful of people without a lot of opinions on the topic. But this is our journey and I wanted to share it.

Yeah, motherhood is great. I love my baby. But I had NO idea that you have to teach a baby how to sleep. I mean, seriously? Sleep? We all love it, so why is it so hard?

Well, first off, the idea of teaching a baby to sleep is a Western thing. All over the world parents sleep with their babies and yeah, some of those babies are hard ones likes ours. But the parents deal with it. There are often extended families to help. That’s just how it is. The concept of cribs, nurseries, "self-soothing"… all Western.

So, why did we have a problem? Well, we don’t live with a houseful of support and a mother simply cannot function off of 1 hour cycles of sleep. At least this mother couldn’t.

Read the rest of this entry »

Welcome to Aiden Riley

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

In a much-overdue post, we want to take the chance to welcome Aiden Riley Schweber, born on October 24th at 3:45am, 7lb 11oz and 52cm long. That’s one week past his due date, for those of you keeping track.

Aiden Riley SchweberRawrDaddy & AidenAiden Riley Schweber
See all Aiden photos here

On October 23, just as I was going to bed, my water broke. I wasn’t sure at first, so I kept waiting for labor to start. No luck. By 6am, when I was sure my water had broken but labor hadn’t started, we went to the hospital. They assessed that the baby was ok and asked me to return when they had more nurses. Because my membranes had ruptured prematurely, I had to be induced into labor.

At 1pm, I was put on the oxytocin drip. By 8pm, labor was still pretty manageable… because my body hadn’t started laboring on its own yet. Within 2 hours, all that changed. After being on the maximum drip for 30 minutes, my labor kicked into overdrive. My contractions became painful and back-to-back, almost no down time in between. The drip was stopped but my body kept up the same pace. Being only 3cm dilated at the point, and having such intense contractions, I opted for the epidural. This was not something I wanted to do, but I’m glad I did. Thankfully there were no complications as a result. Just 3 hours later I was ready to push and an hour later our baby was born! Within a half hour he had latched on and was a loud and happy baby. Read the rest of this entry »

40 Weeks Pregnant

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

I never thought we’d make it this far in the pregnancy, but we have. We’re now 1 day short of our due date, October 17th, placing us at 40 weeks pregnant. At 36 weeks, the baby had already dropped for about a week and the doctor felt that we’d deliver in early October. Obviously that hasn’t happened. Though my body continues to prepare for labor – more dropping, cramping, false labor – I have yet to go into full labor. There are many things they people put as average markers for labor that we have long since passed – for example, many people say you’ll go into labor 2-3 weeks after baby drops. It’s been more than 5 weeks for us. Being excited about these milestones has not gotten us any further towards delivery ;)

Maternity Photoshoot

At 37 weeks, John Biehler came over and did a maternity shoot with us. The full set is here. It felt great to have the photos done and to enjoy the beautiful aspects of pregnancy. Thanks John!

Of course, it’s not all beautiful at this stage in the game! Aside from the excitement of soon meeting our son, there’s also anxiety, nervousness, frustration and so much more. Waiting these last 2 weeks has been very difficult. We take it one single day at a time and slowly we move forward. We just want to finally be in labor! Who ever thought I’d look forward to pain? But that’s how it is.

So, we still have no idea when baby will make his appearance. My doctor, and many researchers, believes that the baby sends out a chemical signal to trigger labor when he/she is ready. No matter how ready your body is, baby sends that signal. So, for now we wait. Anxiously. ;)

Nearly 37 Weeks Pregnant

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

This Saturday we will be 37 weeks pregnant, the magic mark in the pregnancy when we can say we’re full term! Of course, that doesn’t say when we’ll actually have the baby, as a full term baby can come anywhere from 37 to 42 weeks.

Arieanna

My doctor’s exam this week showed that the baby’s head was “very low” and indications were that I was presenting at around 38 weeks. This means that I will probably deliver at or before I am 40 weeks pregnant, but not after (as is statistically more common for a first pregnancy).

This is definitely exciting news! If anyone has seen me within the last week, you would hear me say, without doubt, “I’m done.” The pregnancy definitely hit a difficult place. Though I was able to breathe better when the baby dropped a couple of weeks ago, I have had a harder and harder time sleeping. Partly due to the “light sleeping” the pregnant women go through to “prepare for baby” (what a load of crap that is, don’t we go through enough??) but mostly due to discomfort. I have severe pain near my pelvis / hip joint, particularly on the left side (the side I have to sleep on) and, due to swelling and this side-sleeping, issues with my arm pain have resurfaced. In the morning, I have a fair amount of nerve pain in my hand which restricts me from even being able to make a fist.

Speaking of swelling, I’m really looking forward to dropping that! It hasn’t been “horrible”, in terms of aesthetics, but I do have lovely white splotches all over my legs and now on my arms and hands too from this excess water. The bonus will come when my weight drops quickly from all this water dissipating after the baby is born! And, of course, I’m looking forward to wearing shoes other than my Birkenstocks (the only shoes that have fit for months).

So, I’m definitely ready for baby to come! That said, there are things I know I’ll soon miss. Despite how ‘aggressive’ the baby has been with his kicking and squirming, I know I’ll miss this special time with him. It’s a very amazing process and connection to be a part of. Yes, pregnancy is difficult. But it’s also absolutely amazing. To feel him kick and move his little bum around, to see him respond when Ianiv talks to him or to feel all his little bouts of hiccups… just so cute.

Here’s a question I get asked a lot… Do I have cravings? Well, not for anything “weird.” Early in the pregnancy, and still a bit now, I’ve enjoyed lemons and limes (and lemonade) more than usual. For me, it helped with nausea (though I only had very mild first trimester issues). Now, I’d say that things I really enjoy are simply “enhanced” and the need for them becomes more urgent. More often than not I’ll crave french fries or ice cream or a muffin. However, I’m easily swayed by something I see on tv or hear about. If someone mentions Thai food I can crave it to the point of distraction, for example. That said, Ianiv has been a lucky husband – he’s rarely had to go out for any special “craving” trips. ;)

34 Weeks Pregnant

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

We’re now 34 weeks and a handful of days into the pregnancy. On Friday, we had another ultrasound. Early in the pregnancy, it was determined that I had about a 30% chance of being placenta previa, so this ultrasound was to check on the position of the placenta. We’re happy to report everything is now as it should be, with the placenta on the anterior (front).

Arieanna

At the same time, we also checked the position of the baby. About two weeks prior to the ultrasound, baby boy had turned breech (bum down). He’s an active baby, even now, but at the time was making turns at least once a day (once I realized that’s what he was doing). As he grew bigger, it was a lot more uncomfortable for me when he’d decide to switch positions. Thankfully, perhaps by his own choice or some exercises I’d been doing, the baby turned back from the breech position and has remained head-down since late last week.

At 34 weeks, the baby has also started to “drop” slightly, making it a little easier on me for breathing, though increasing my low back pain and the intensity of my Braxton Hicks contractions. We still have 3 weeks until baby is considered “full term” (which he is considered from 37 to 42 weeks), though the doctor says that if labor starts now, it won’t be stopped. So he could really come any time! The ultrasound very rough estimate has baby at near to 6lbs already.

The pregnancy has progressed to the “very uncomfortable” stage. My pelvis and lower back are both pretty sore and loose, in preparation for the birth, and I have discomfort from the contractions and just the weight of the baby. I’m sure his kicks don’t help either ;) I also have a fair amount of water retention in my legs and feet, making them a bit sore.

We have completed 2 out of the 6 prenatal classes. Let’s hope we can finish the full 6 before baby is born!

Baby’s Room is Ready

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby, Home Decor

We’re now 34 weeks into the pregnancy and the baby’s room, for the most part, is completely ready for his arrival. I’ve been “nesting” for a while now, so it’s both comforting and sad that his room is ready – sad because now I have nothing left to “nest” with!

The baby's roomBaby's Room

The baby’s room is painted in two colors from Benjamin Moore with their Aura series paint, which is what we used for the entire house. The top color is Limesickle, 2145-50, and the bottom is Guilford Green, HC-116. We had a simple chair rail installed in white, which is the same as the crown and baseboards, which you can’t see in the photo. The curtains in the room are from Pottery Barn Kids and feature a green and white stripe with brown stitching accent stripes.

The crib, dresser / hutch and side table are a part of the Rossport collection from College Wood Work. The crib converts to a day bed then to a double bed, so it was a good investment piece. Adding the hutch to the dresser gives us a lot of extra storage, though there’s also a pretty decently-sized closet in the room (not pictured). The chair is a leather glider recliner from Dutailier, though it is last year’s model (Intermezzo series). We got it at a discount, and I actually prefer it to this year’s model. Since it doesn’t “look” like a nursery glider, we’ll be able to transition it to our living room eventually.

As you walk into the room, the crib is straight ahead from the door, against an inside wall. Behind the crib we have the artwork our friends and family made at the baby shower. To the right of the crib is the hutch, while to the left is the chair & side-table in front of the window. The door is on the same wall as the closet, neither of which are pictured.

31 Weeks and Counting

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv

We’ve passed 31 weeks in the pregnancy! We’re expecting the new baby in just about 8.5 weeks. And I’m so close to counting down the days! There’s still a lot of time left, but each day is definitely bringing new challenges!

Arieanna

When Vancouver had that record heat wave, I was definitely a mess. Feet so swollen I could barely walk. I was working on our couch at the time, since our house was being painted. That project took about 3 weeks, with our baby shower sandwiched in between.

Already it feels like a long time since that baby shower! The last two weeks have proven to be more challenging for me, pregnancy wise. I think I realize why people say the third trimester is hardest!

I was unable to return to working at my desk after our renovations were complete. The baby presses down and makes it difficult for me to breathe / for blood to circulate to my legs. So, I now work with my feet up on the couch, taking regular breaks to lie down or walk. This position has its problems for my neck and shoulder, of course. Sleeping is a whole other challenge. Despite being propped up – front and back – with loads of pillows, I have pain throughout the night. So, sleep is difficult. During the day, when the baby isn’t on my diaphragm, he’s often nudging his little rear up into my ribs or kicking the heck out of my mid-section. You add to that regular bouts of “pregnancy brain” (some of which I’m sure has to do with ups and downs in protein intake and glucose levels), and I’ve definitely been on a roller coaster.

That said, it’s not all horrible. I can still get away with eating spicy foods, and still enjoy coffee (though I’m back to decaf). Though I may be slow, I enjoy getting out and walking and, up until this week, was regularly attending a prenatal pilates class. It was fun! I’ve also love nesting in the baby’s room – now beautifully painted and adorned with all baby’s new furniture. And of course, as sore as his kicking can make me, I love feeling the baby twist and turn around and to see his little foot or arm push out my tummy.

We’ve already had our “tour” of the hospital in preparation for the birth. Next week we begin our prenatal classes. We also have another ultrasound to look forward to. So, we’re getting there. In retrospect, I’m sure the next 8 weeks will just fly by. For now, we’re just taking it a day at a time.



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