Today marks exactly one month until my due date – Nov. 22. It seems surreal to think that my pregnancy is almost over and pretty soon there will be another human living in our house, fully reliant upon us to provide, protect and care for her.
This weekend we spent quite a bit of time preparing for life with a new baby. On Saturday we completed our “labor test run” drive down to our hospital in Carson City … about a 45 minute drive from our house. As we made our way along the two-lane highway that hugs the edge of Lake Tahoe, I was thinking a few things:
A) I really hope it’s not snowing a blizzard when we are going to the hospital
B) if I am having contractions every five minutes (as many women are when they are hospital-bound) I will have about nine contractions in the car (EEP!) and
C) having this baby IN the car is not an option
We arrived at the hospital and after going through pre-registration, went up to labor & deliver to get a tour. One of the nurses took us around the L&D floor and I was amazed at how chill it was up there. So quiet. Dim lights. Laughter in the halls.
Each mom gets her own new room with a tub, shower, bed for her husband, TV, WIFI and fridge. Plus some pretty great mountain views out the big windows.
They do everything in one room – labor, deliver and care for the baby. There is no crowded nursery your baby is sent to for their post-birth checks. It’s all done right next to your bedside. I also really appreciated that the nurse went out of her way to tell me they are big advocates for immediate skin-to-skin contact and breastfeeding. I was worried about Lila getting whisked away for unnecessary cleanings and measuring before I could really bond with her.
Walking out of the hospital, I felt at peace and not fearful at all. The facilities were relaxed. The nurses were sweet. And my doctor is incredibly supportive and nurturing. All elements are lined up for us to have the birth we want.
Later that day, after feeling like we had the labor & delivery prep down, I started thinking about what we needed to know once we bring Lila home. Thankfully I’ll have my sister and/or my mom in town depending on when she arrives to help guide us. But still, I really have no clue what goes into caring for a newborn.
So, I parked myself on the couch and watched video after video on YouTube regarding “Infant Care.” I found this baby series from “How Cast” to be pretty good. It covered the basics like swaddling, picking up a newborn, calming a crying baby, bathing and feeding. Basically though I realized it’s a lot of common sense and mommy intuition.
As the sun got lower in the sky that day, I went downstairs and sat in Lila’s nursery to have some quiet time rocking in the chair we have there, re-folding some blankets and thinking about how much our lives are about to change. It’s overwhelming at times to think about the things we’ll be giving up: freedom to come and go as we please, time to spend doing hobbies (like blogging) and the ability to live our lives solely for ourselves.
But truthfully, I am happy to let our current life go if it means getting to experience everything that comes with motherhood. From what I hear, pretty soon after adding a baby to the mix, you can’t even remember (or want to remember) what life was like before they arrived.
And so, the final countdown to baby girl’s arrival begins!