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Ruby May Chapman born at 4:04 pm on Wednesday 28th May 2008
Weight: 7lbs3oz
Length: 50cm
Head Circumference: 34cm
APGAR Scores: 9 at both 1 & 5 mins

birth story ftwCollapse )

still pregnant!

Well, Baby Chapman's EDD came and went yesterday and she's still a-cookin'. I had some regular but mild contractions for much of the evening, but they calmed down and eventually stopped at about midnight. I went to bed hoping to be woken up to an iron belly and lots of pain, but it was not to be.

Today, we took a walk around the shopping centre in Wandsworth, and then stopped off at the park on the way home. Lots of pressure and everything just felt heavy. When I got home I lost my mucous plug, and it was beyond gross. I showed it to Ross because he was curious.

"It looks like gold" he said.

Well, not quite, but if you say so. He got quite excited because the midwives at antenatal class said that could mean things are happening.

I am not holding my breath.
Not much has happened since my last post here.

I have had my last midwife appointment, and have my last GP appointment tomorrow morning. I have my 40 week appointment scheduled with an obstetrician because of the problems I had with SPD and blood pressure, but I am really hoping to go into labour before then.

I think we're pretty much good to go when things happen, anyway. The only thing that hasn't arrived is the cot, and we have a moses basket anyway. Billions of little outfits, and nappies etc. I need to pick up some cotton wool and nappy sacks but that is actually about it.

Last night, I woke up at 5 with a cramp, and I really thought that was it. Before going to sleep, Ruby had been crazily active and waking up with the cramp was scary and exciting! I got another one at 5.30ish and debated waking Ross up, but ended up falling asleep instead. I hope it means something is brewing.

almost done

I'm full term on sunday, and I'm so ready for this baby to come out.

I can't wait to meet her!! I'm so excited and nervous.


I saw the obstetrician this morning. I explained all my worries and SPD woes and she completely put me at ease. They don't want to give me a c-section, but likewise she was very very clear in saying they will not induce me as that could be dangerous. So that makes me think that if I do go to 42 weeks they will re-think surgery.

We're happy with that, because it means I can indulge in a lot of curry, attempt some walks in the park, and generally have a lot more options. The doctor also advised spending early labour in a warm bath at home. Sounds good to me.

I'm going to make a start on the birth plan tonight.

countdown to Ruby...

less than 6 weeks! (lordy)

Here is what we still have to do:

1) Decorate the nursery. This has it's own little sub-list because that is a mammouth job in itself. It's very plain at the moment:
1a) and we want to inject some colour into it. Two walls are going to be bright white, and the other two are going to be a nice fresh green.
1b) I am going to make my own curtains and cot bumper from some very pretty, but trés inexpensive fabric from Ikea.
1c) the plugs and electric sockets are not flush to the wall at the moment. They need to be, and Ross is the man to do it.
1d) we need to buy a curtain rail. I am leaning towards a nice black iron one. - we went for a silver one in the end
1e) a carpet needs to be laid. It's really terrible laminate in there at the moment. And the room is cold so I want to preserve as much heat as possible without putting in a radiator.
1f) I want to paint luminous stars on the ceiling. I am yet to convince Ross this is a nice idea.
2) Buy a cot, and bedding. My Dad sent me the money for a lovely cotbed I saw in John Lewis, so it's a done deal.
3) Buy a pram. We've seen a good deal on a Silver Cross.
4) Buy a sling. I like to idea of babywearing. - we were given one by Ross' mum
5) Buy a breastpump, and figure out how to assemble it. Get all the gumph that goes with it; bottles, steryliser etc.
6) Have the un-American baby shower that is being thrown for us.
7) Sign up and go to antenatal classes.
8) Write a birth plan, and learn it.
9) Choose and buy nappies.
10) Wash all Ruby's newborn clothes
11) Pack hospital bag - this doesn't have to be even thought about for another few weeks.
12) Get the bathroom sorted out - believe me, this is a necessity.
13) Buy and install a carseat... - ordered today!
14) ...But before we do that, we need to get the KA.

33 week appointment

I had another antenatal appointment with my GP on Tuesday morning. The very first thing she asked as soon as I waddled into her office was how I was doing, and I used that an an opportunity to launch into my story of SPD woe. It is quite a sad tale; I told her all about the physio appointments and the whole 24cm shebang, the pre-existing back trauma (from falling down a flight of stairs at age 10) and how I would really like to see an obstetrician to discuss my options for birth. She was more than happy to refer me, and did her responsible doctor bit of advising me that recovery from a c-section is longer than recovery from a vaginal birth. I told her that I understood that, but if I did myself some pelvic damage of the more permanent variety whilst squeezing out my baby, then the recovery from that could be much worse, and I have to be able to look after her on my own; something that is going to be impossible if I have to use crutches for weeks.

My story of woe clearly sent my blood pressure through the roof because she took three readings before getting one she was happy with. The high blood pressure is NOT a good thing, and there is now a big note in capital letters in my notes that it has to be watched closely. My BP has gone up and up fairly consistently the further along I have got, but I was really hoping it wouldn't get quite as high as it was on Tuesday (140/90)

And the other thing that wasn't so hot was my wee sample, and the sugar that was found in it. The doctor said my kidneys were leaky and sent me, armed with a blood testing request form, down to St George's to be poked for blood yet again. I couldn't go on Tuesday because I had to fast for 12 hours and could only drink water so I drove down yesterday instead. I hope so much that it was just a blip because otherwise I might be looking at the dreaded glucose intolerance test and gestational diabetes.

I only have about 6 weeks left, so I'm pleading with my body to hold out a little better than it is right now. I'm trying to stay as calm and rest as much as possible, so we really need to sort out the freeview box in our room so I don't die of terrestrial TV boredom.

I haven't posted any photos for a while, and I took a couple yesterday sporting my über-gorgeous pelvic support belt. Does it make me feel like a granny? Does it heck!Collapse )

second physio app

I've just got home from my second physiotherapy appointment. It was shorter than last time, but just as helpful. The physiotherapist tried to pull my pelvis back to where it's meant to be and did some massage on my inner thigh, as the muscles there are overstretched.

I have been given some more exercises to do as well, and if it gets much worse I can ask for some crutches.



spd - another update

So, the SPD is really very bad. I have officially met Mr T's friend Pain. I almost cried today because getting up from a chair hurt so much. I am so very glad I'm not working anymore, but if I was, I'd be signed off anyway.

I had my first physio appointment last monday. I didn't know what to expect. It turns out my physiotherapist is very nice and put me at ease straight away. I had to strip down to my underwear (and didn't that make me wish I was able to still do my bikini line?!) and she had me do all sorts of tests and contort my aching body into all sorts of painful positions so she could figure out what the deal is. She made me lie on a bed and she pushed and pulled at my pelvis until I yelped (and swore) in pain, and she had me try to touch my toes (yeah, right) and all sorts of other things.

The good news is... well, there isn't much really. I have been given a rather fetching, very surgical looking, white pelvic belt to wear all the time whilst I am standing up. I have to wear it over my hips, and under my bump as tight as I can to hold everything together. It works to an extent, but seems to exacerbate my back problems. I can't wear it sitting down, so I have to take it off every time I go to the loo, drive anywhere, sit anywhere, or am in bed.

The bad news is, I have a curved spine which is made worse by being pregnant, one side of my pelvis is higher than the other, which is why the SPD is so excruciating, one knee is higher than the other, and when I fell down the stairs at age 10, I did some probably irreparable damage to my coccyx. Oh, and the furthest I can open my knees before I start to damage my pelvis is 24cms. Measure it. There is no way a baby is coming out of me as God intended with that kind of tiny gap.

At least I found out about this now, instead of when I'm really old and doddery, because clearly, I'm going to be doddery. But with all this in mind, I am now seriously considering a c-section. All the research I have done suggests that SPD is NOT a reason for a c-section, but coupled with my back problems, and the fact that my pelvis isn't regular to start with, I am going to ask my GP for a referral to an obstetrician nonetheless. My reasoning is this:

I will have to be able to look after the baby by myself after she is born, as all my family work, meaning that I need to be in as good a physical state as I can be. If I do some major damage to myself because I have opened my legs up more than 24 cms, then this might not be the case. I think that if my labour is going to be monitored and managed with the chance of a lot of intervention, then I might as well just have a c-section and be done with it. I am not crunchy, the most important thing to me is getting her out with the least amount of stress to either of us.

It's not that I am too posh to push or any of that crap, and if I didn't have any of this BS to deal with, then I'd still be going for my nice serene water birth complete with chillout music and perineal massage and immediate skin to skin contact. Hell, I might even want to look at my placenta, but the fact is, my hips are fucked, and I want to be able to walk again sans velcro belt at some point, and if being sliced open is going to make that possible, then so be it.

I have my next physio app tomorrow. She said we'll talk about labour positions, and I am interested to hear about what she says. Not sure it will change my mind, though.


At the weekend I found something so odd I didn't know whether to laugh or cry at myself, and trust me it was touch and go for a few seconds given the severity of my emo tendencies these days.

I found... a stretchmark on my bum! I was bending down to pull up my jeans after going to the loo and happened to catch sight of a little red line on my very lower back in the mirror. It was winking at me.

Well I never, I thought, why on Earth did it happen to occur there? I got Ross to confirm that it was indeed a stretchie, and not just a random line imprinted on my skin from my clothes.

Ah well, it was always going to happen eventually, given my roadmap skin (someone who shall remain anonymous once made a rather tactless and catty jibe about being able to navigate to Scotland using the stretchmarks on my hips), and I should thank my lucky stars there are none on mah belleh yet.