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A owl enjoys a quiet night with eyes wide open under a bright moon. Not me. I prefer sleep in my comfortable bed with my eyes close till the sun comes up. Z z z z z

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Spring is here! It always reminds me the kindness and generosity of Mother Nature.

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Font: Titillium from CAMPIVISIVI

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It is a new year and it is 2012!

Either you believe in the Mayan prophecy or not, it says that 2012 marks a Shift into a New World Age Cycle. Let’s enjoy and have a good life!

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Background: grungy paper texture from bittbox.com

Font: Melbourne by Marco Müller

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We Finally Met

11/28

2PM Doctor’s visit: 3cm dilated, 100% effaced.
My back was sore like menstrual cramp and contractions came more frequent, after the doctor checked my cervix. And I noticed spotting.

6PM Mucous plug dislodged.
By dinner, I am pretty sure my mucous plug has dislodged – I had bloody show, a mixture of brown and pink mucous with tiny amount of blood. With the frequent and short, but irregular contractions, I also feel a little light headed. That may be caused by fighting with the contractions.

10:30PM Bedtime
I put a piece of shiroro’s wee-wee pad underneath the bed sheet incase my water break in the middle of the night.

11/29
1:30AM Waken by contractions
It did feel like menstrual cramp, but it came and went, only lasted about 20 to 30 seconds. I was a little disappointed when I found out it was just 1:30 in the morning. I wished I had gone to bed earlier so I would had more rest before dealing with contractions. I tried to time my contractions and they seemed quiet regular.

3:00AM Last meal
2 mochi breads, 1 cup of milk, and 6 pieces of almonds.
I decided to get up and eat something. This could my last solid food before the baby comes.

6:40AM Maybe we should get ready
I think it is almost time to go to the hospital. I woke up hubby, and start to get myself ready.

9:30AM Arrive at hospital: 4cm dilated, 100% effaced
After the nurse checked me into the triage, and repeated asked me some question, such as if I smoke, drink, or have any allergies, I was admitted into the hospital. The labor room is big and quiet. They hooked me up with baby heart rate and contraction monitors, plus IV and antibiotic right away. I was so sleepy and spent plenty of time on the bed in the morning.

1:00PM check up: 5.5cm dilated, 100% effaced.
After lunch time, my nurse came in and check my cervix. The progress seemed slow, but my doctor still considered this is good progress, didn’t order any oxytocin. Contractions was less frequent in the afternoon, and didn’t get more painful. I stood up and walked around to release the soreness on my hip.

5:30PM Still 6cm dilated
My doctor finally dropped by, but my labor did not progress much from earlier. He tried to break my  bag of water without success, because the baby’s head was too engaged to the pelvic bone – scratch too hard may hurt the baby. He ordered 2 milliunit/min oxytocin, hoping to speed things up.

9:30PM Epidural salesman arrived
Even with all the warmth and caring in this hospital, it still made me feel that they were plotting something. I was such a good patient, never complained or screamed at my discomfort, except for occupied the spacious labor room for whole 12 hours without much progress.
One of the night shift nurses was very loud and energetic. She came in and checked on me, asked how I felt and praised me that I was still smiling after dealing the contractions whole day. Then she repeated my options for pain management. On top of that, she, the first one in my stay, encouraged me to use epidural since my dilation didn’t progress much, and it is going to be long way to delivery. Besides epidural , I was also offered a short term pain meds, which will only last 1 to 2 hours and not as strong. I decided to take a shot of the latter to take a nap and think about what to do next.

11PM “Push, Jade-chan, push…”
When I woke up from my even more painful contractions, it was close to 11.
Finally, I agreed on the epidural. At the same time, my doctor came in, planning to insert a monitor inside to better monitor the contractions, which helps determine how much more oxytocin can be used. He tried to break my water again. This time, it broke. I felt a stream of warm fluid exited my body. Then, he said, “Why don’t we try to push. You are 9 centimeter, almost 10.”
I began to push every time contraction came. The nurse started opening a large package which has been sitting on a rolling table from the beginning. She came over to help me whenever I need to push and tried to encourage me by calling “push, Jade-chan, push! Ganbare!” I wanted to laugh but couldn’t.

When I was pushing, all the pain subsided. I just felt an unstoppable urge to push, squeezing every organ in my chest.

11/30

00:47 AM The first cry

After who knows how many push, the nurse said she can see the head of the baby, asked if I want to see. Before I answered, she brought in a mirror. Well, I saw it, but it definitely not going to help.

After a short while, my doctor and a resident OB, and another nurse came in. They started putting on scrubs, laying large blue fabric on me.  I felt needle poking and numbness – crap, epistonomy! I ran away from epidural, but still couldn’t avoid a cut and some stitches later.

After a few pushes and stops. Just when I was worried that I would not be able to push much longer, my doctor asked me if I wanted to pull her out myself. What?! Pull what out? The nurse pushed me up. OMG! I couldn’t believe my eyes – it is over! Half of the baby’s body is out. And then, she started crying.

She got a quick wiped-off and handed to me. Dark hair with chestnut highlight covers her head. She was alert. Her eyes are open, looking around. Lips liked soft petals, opened and closed. Skin was pink and soft, covered with a layer of very fine golden hair. Look at those tiny figures and tiny toes… Thank god! She is healthy, she is perfect!

Hello, sweetie, sugar pie, little bunny, panda-chan! You’re my daughter. We finally met!

I am Expecting

At last Saturday’s checkup, my doctor examined my cervix to see how ready we (baby and I ) were. I was 2cm dilated, and the cervix was paper-thin that he could feel the baby’s head. So, I was told to expect to go into labor any time in the following week.

I was afraid that she would come early. I  went to work the next day (Sunday), tried to get things wrapped up at work as much as possible. And I was trying to stay longer and make sure things were done every day, in case I won’t be returning. 6 days later, I am still waiting to meet my baby.

This baby is a good baby overall during the 9 months staying inside of my tummy, especially in the last couple months. I don’t have much complains like other mother-to-be. I am still walking around like usual, don’t have heartburn, sleep well (except for midnight restroom breaks), no bad dreams or horrible back problems…

Yesterday was my last day at work before maternity leave. I wished I would give birth after my due date, which is 11/29, so I will have couple days to rest and get prepared. Now I don’t have to work, I am hoping she will come and greet the world a little earlier.

Am I ready? No. Am I anxious? Yes. I don’t think I will ever be ready to become a mom. No body will. And I am so nervous about labor and delivery. Especially after being diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes, I am less optimistic about having a smooth delivery – the unexpected is always possible.

Just couple days away, or even only couple hours later, I will meet my daughter. It is still a little unreal to me that a human being will come out from my body, even though I have been feeling her moves and seen her face through the ultra sound. This will irreversibly make me a mother. And part of my heart will be taken away with her as far as she goes, even to the end of the universe, as long as I live and beyond.

Dear Daddy

Dear Daddy,

Only 4 more weeks! I will see you in 4 weeks! Can you believe that?! I hope I will see you there before meeting anyone else.

Mommy and I have been talking a lot. And I know she has been a little anxious lately. Especially, you are not around that often, or even if you are around, you are too busy to have a moment to “hang out” with us.

Mommy is a strong and independent girl. She doesn’t like people think that her petite size and gentle smile equal “I am fragile, I need help!” And she wish I will be the same and even stronger. However, giving birth should never be a single person’s journey.

Your company and support are so important to mommy and I that no one else can replace.

Mommy has heard a lot of good things about natural birth. Although she is not brave enough to refuse all types of pain medicine, but she is determined to do her best to hold off the pain medicine to the last minute.

Please don’t think of pain as a bad thing. The sense of pain tells mommy’s body to release needed hormone to help with delivery and after. During that time, she may be yelling, screaming, crying, looked upset and frustrated. What she will need is not pain medicine but your positive support, encouragement and comfort, tell her she is doing a good job, every contraction is a step closer to the end, and this will not last forever…

Of course, doctor may has the best knowledge, but every procedure should be questioned if it is necessary. If it is not necessary, mommy won’t want to get any drug and any cut on her body. And I will do my best to let mommy has a easy time.

After I am born, I should stay with mommy or you, skin-to-skin for at least an hour before taking a bath or getting any exam and shot. Do you know what kind of exams and shots I will receive at the nursery? It is time for you look it up.

All right, good luck! I will see you there! Take good care of mommy.

U・x・U

I am Almost Ready!!

I am going to be 34 weeks! Every body likes to comment on Mommy’s big tummy. And her “Oheso” (belly button) is from flat to slowly sticking out. She is still under strict diet so she is not gaining much weight but I am still growing bigger. Doctor said he will order another ultra sound to check on me at 36th week. I bet mommy and daddy cannot wait to see me again.

Mommy enjoys watching me moving after dinner. I am bigger now. Although mommy’s tummy has grown as well, the space is getting tighter for me. It just looks like I move more often with more strength. I only have a little more time to play inside mommy’s tummy, my very first home, before I have to turn up-side-down to wait quietly before my big debut.

About names… We are almost settle down on the Japanese name. Daddy is debating between 2. Mommy said we can wait and see which one I like better when I come out. They still have mixed review about the American name.

My room is almost ready. Mommy finally organized all the little cloth into storage boxes. Bedding are washed, mattress and crib are stand by, changing table is fixed, car seats are here and waiting for installed … anything else? Anything else! Oh, wait, mommy is writing down another list!!

Daddy is on a business trip this week, the the last trip before my due date (^o^). We miss you, Daddy!!

U・x・U