lundi 17 février 2014
Someone had other plans.
Our daughter S. decided to make her appearance weeks ahead of schedule.

(We have decided not to post her full name, birth date, or photos online, at least for now. I will be happy however to email anyone the details)

Thank goodness my suitcase was more or less ready, i had made a copy of my file (one to keep at work, one for home), and we had more or less finished the apartment.

Went to bed the other night and all of a sudden felt and heard a pop!

No water (yet), not really painful, but a pregnancy symptom i had never felt before (which is saying something, since i had almost every one in the book from the drooling to the facial twitching). I told Alain that i felt something pop, but he thought it was nothing. I went online, and sure enough, a lot of women said they felt the same thing, and that the real gushing of water didn't start until later. Um, honey? Think we should go to the hospital just to check. At any rate, it will be a good 'practice run'- see how long it takes, where to turn, where to park. 

It took us about 20 minutes to arrive. Checked in at the night desk, they hooked me up to the monitors. Indeed, it was my water that broke, and the contractions were becoming strong and more regular. 

I'll spare you the rest of the details, but she arrived a little after six the next morning. A full head of brown hair, eye color- undecided. I say blue, Alain says brown. She weighs 2.56 kg, length 48 cm. Not too small for being a bit before term.

So far, she has been really good, only cries when hungry, and content to just be held. We are staying four days. I am really pleased with the hospital and personnel. Alain went to City Hall to declare her and has been busy fetching and buying last-minute stuff. 

She had an ultrasound of her hips performed, since her grandma's Breton side has a history of hip problems. Looks good so far. Also, a minor infection, so she is being treated with antibiotics. She thus has a tiny catheter in her hand, but doesn't seem to mind.

All in all, a sweet, super-cute little French-American! (Or will be, once I go to the US Consulate).
samedi 15 février 2014
One more month... More or less. One more week of work. 

I was actually supposed to stop February 4th (six weeks before D-Day) but now French law allows pregnant women to delay their pre-natal rest up to three weeks before, with the doctor's consent. Besides being a bit tired and not sleeping well, I am feeling okay. So i preferred to delay as long as possible, and thus have more time afterwards.

For anyone wondering, I will have 16 weeks, at about 60% pay. Not bad. Better than my job in the US- unpaid leave or vacation, which takes a long time to accumulate at 2 weeks per year!

Baby's room is more or less ready, and my suitcase is packed. We had our first birth preparation class at the hospital a week ago. It was two hours long, and went over labor, when to leave for the hospital, what happens when you arrive, etc. The next one is next Monday, again two hours, going over the actual delivery and the aftermath, and finally, the last session ten days later, how to take care of the baby.

I actually had been seeing an independent mid-wife because it was impossible to get through to the hospital to set the appointments. I was however a bit disappointed with her-individual appointments, difficult to ask questions, and focusing more on visualization (relaxation, imagining the baby in your arms) than the nitty gritty. The sessions were very brief, and she wasn't going to do the whole eight sessions. Alain wasn't allowed to participate either. I finally got fed up and managed to weasle my way in at the traditional classes. I'll go over my allotment of 8 reimbursed sessions, but it is worth it.

So that is that. Five more days of work, then just waiting...

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