Amelia's Birth Story

I almost don't want to write this down, because it feels like closing a chapter in my life - birthing our last baby, an experience that was wonderful but feels so far away already. But I know how much I love revisiting the girls' births all these years later, so I want to do Amelia's justice as well. Just one post this time, I promise I won't make you wait!

Let me rewind a few months - when our little belly babe was measuring consistently large on ultrasound, in a similar pattern to both of her big sisters. It seems that despite starting this pregnancy at a much healthier weight, genetics always wins - we were never destined to have petite, tiny babies! My OB and I kept a close eye on her growth and as the third trimester drew closer to its end, she was measuring almost the same size as Claire. (If you can remember, she was born at 4.1kg at 37+6 weeks.)

We also had the holidays to think about - would she come early on her own on Christmas Day, or in the lead up to Christmas? I didn't really mind in the grand scheme of things, but I really hoped we could avoid a Christmas Day baby, just so it wouldn't make the day too crazy for the rest of the family. My doctor was on call over that period, so thankfully I didn't have that issue to worry about - I really wanted him to be there for the birth.

I had an OB appointment on Monday 23rd December, where he estimated baby to be approx 3.7kg in size, and he did an internal exam - I was already dilated to 3cm and baby was engaged at that appointment, so very favourable for an induction later that week. We decided on Friday 27th December as d-day, unless of course she decided to come on her own before that!

Baby behaved, and we got through Christmas and Boxing Day and all of our family celebrations. So crazy that it was our last one as a family of four! I hit 38 weeks exactly on Christmas Day.

Friday morning arrived, and we headed off to hospital. I had a little bit of dejavu as we headed in while not in labour, although I was feeling pretty uncomfortable at this point. We were checked into a delivery room, but it had no bath facilities so I was pretty disappointed; I'd hoped to be able to use the bath/shower when labour took off. Luckily the midwife was able to work her magic and get me into the room next door, which was twice the size and had better air conditioning too. Huzzah!
First up - monitoring. Just like her sisters, baby girl was SUPER hyped up and kicking up a storm before we got the induction going. She did not stop moving for at least an hour, and her heart-rate skyrocketed up to 180 bpm - so I ended up having fluids and some extra monitoring to calm her down. 
My doctor arrived and was happy to break my waters on the spot, since I was still over 3cm dilated and ready to go. With an epic pop, he ruptured my membranes pretty easily. It was 9am - almost identical to when we started Claire's induction three years ago. This time around, they popped some trendy little mesh knickers on me, so I was able to be up and around a lot easier. The drip was started not long after, and we were off!
Like last time, it didn't take long for things to kick off. I had prepared a playlist on Spotify of my favourite calming/relaxing music and I just let that play on speaker phone while Jason and I were hanging out and waiting for the drug to ramp things up. I had told him that he was in charge of taking random photographs throughout the labour - since this was our last baby, I wanted to remember the whole experience. At first it was amusing, watching the contractions pick up and register - enough to laugh and make jokes through. Then, just like with Claire, things got hard and they got hard FAST.

The midwife on duty asked what my birth plan was. My reply: The plan is not to have a plan. I am a firm believer in just going with the flow - the more rigid I am with wanting something to work out, the more stressed I get when things don't go to plan. We have very little control over childbirth, particularly when you're being induced, so I basically wanted to go with the flow and see what happened. I'd had two vaginal births previously, so I trusted my body would know what to do. Georgia had been born with the help of an epidural; Claire had been born with gas alone.

As things ramped up, I asked for the gas to take the edge off. In that middle stage of labour, it really does take the pain away, and I was able to still talk through it all. I remember what songs were playing, I remember commenting to hubby that baby's heartrate had stayed firm in the 160's the whole labour so far, and I remember the midwife wanting to do a quick check to see how things were going. At this point, the contractions were coming harder and faster together, so I was keen to see if things were progressing - so I was really disappointed when she did an internal and I was only 4cm dilated. How was that possible? I'd STARTED the induction at 3cm! Talk about gutted.

I moved from the bed to the fitness ball, and continued using the gas to get through the contractions as they hit. It was around 11am at this point, and I was feeling slightly upset at this point. I'd hoped the labour would be short and sweet like Claire's, and she was born at 11:04am, a quick 2 hours after the induction started. If I was only 4cm dilated, I knew I'd be labouring for a lot longer with this baby, and I was getting more and more uncomfortable. It was around this point that I stopped talking to Jason, and the gas was no longer taking the pain away - it barely distracted me through them.

Everything was a bit of a blur from here on. I stopped paying attention to everything and I remember being in absolute agony - the music wasn't helping, and I was barely taking the gas tube out of my mouth between contractions anymore. Jason wanted to get the midwife in to see how I was progressing, but I didn't want her to check me, in case I was still 4cm. It had only been half an hour - how much could I really have progressed in that time? Unbeknownst to me, while I was having another fierce contraction, hubby went ahead and buzzed for her, so she decided to get me up for another check.

I was 8cm dilated! And while she was mid-internal, another contraction hit and she commented that she could see the baby - so she told me to give a little push, while she gave my cervix a slight sweep at the same time. Whoa nelly! The pressure hit me like a freight train, and I started bellowing about needing to push NOW. The midwife rang my OB and yep... it was go time! It was around 11.45am at that point.

There was so much pressure, and I could feel her right there - I was terrified that my OB wasn't going to make it there in time. The gas was making it feel as though time was slowing down, but then all of a sudden my doctor was in front of me, to my utter relief.

Time felt like a blur to me at this point, but I focused on the intense pressure - and Jason tells me I only pushed for around 10 minutes before her head was fully out, and her body the next contraction. The midwife lifted her up to me and placed her on my chest, and I remember wondering if she would be like Georgia or Claire. To be honest, at first I had no idea! She was completely covered in vernix, and it was hard to see her features at all.

I wiped her down with a warm towel while we had some delayed clamping time. My OB realised I was still contracting and that my placenta wasn't far from arriving, so he had Jason cut the umbilical cord. I cuddled our sweet girl while pushing it out, and it was delivered complete.

I couldn't believe that she was here! Born at 11.55am, that made my labour under 3 hours from start to finish. She let out lots of cries and was thankfully well and happy post-birth, so we didn't feel rushed having that first skin to skin time. She was squirming on my chest, so we attempted a little feed, and she latched on almost straight away. After Claire's tongue tie issues, I was super paranoid about this baby having similar problems - but for now, she was doing just fine.

Since it was midday, a lunch trolley arrived as if by magic, and I got to indulge in my favourite hospital food, the little mixed plate of sandwiches - bliss! (What can I say, I'm easily pleased!) Jason had skin to skin cuddles with the baby while I snacked, and then had a shower - and just like that, we were wheeled over to the ward.

It is still the most surreal feeling in the world, having a baby in your hospital room with you. I missed that experience with Georgia when she was admitted to special care after her birth, and I had it taken away from me a few days in with Claire, when she went up for jaundice light therapy. I savoured every moment of getting unlimited squishy cuddles with our tiny, fresh little human.. and best of all, the family could come and visit straight away!

Is there anything sweeter than seeing your children meet for the first time? I don't think so! The girls peering over into the bassinet to see their new sister was just priceless, as were their first cuddles. They were smitten with her from day one, and are still just as sweet with her all these weeks later.

As for our little girl, we named her Amelia. She is fair skinned and blue eyed like her biggest sister, with the tiny nose and mouth of her middle sister. She's a dream baby in the daytime, who loves snuggles and naps like a champ. She's also a party animal at night, just like she was in my belly... so we're all pretty tired around these parts. Tired, but oh so very blessed.

Amelia Grace
3.9kg - 50cm long
Born December 27, 2019

She's here!

Welcome to the family, Amelia Grace
Born December 27th, 2019. We are all so in love!

36 weeks + 3 days

Well.. time got away from me as per usual. We're already in the home stretch!

36 weeks... goodness gracious. Crazy to imagine that there's only a few weeks to go. Georgia was born at 36+4 and Claire was born at 37+6... hoo boy! This baby is also measuring rather large, even though this time my tummy is nice and average. What can I say? We make BIG gorgeous baby girls!!!

Nursery is done. Car seats are all installed. Christmas presents are done. Now it's just cleaning the house & waiting to see when she makes her big arrival. WE ARE GOING TO HAVE THREE KIDS. OMG.

26 weeks + 2 days

Baby girl is plugging away in there, being cute and stubborn and bang on average - and I'm feeling surprisingly good! :)

Life is hectic without a lot of rest, but I figured the tiredness I was suffering from was just a result of standard pregnancy stuff - plus the added bonus of chasing the girls around and running everyone to appointments, etc. Turns out my iron levels have tanked and I need to get an infusion done next week. Apparently you feel better a little while afterwards, so I'm curious to see how it affects my energy levels!

We are just a few months away from meeting this little girl and I'm SUPER excited. This time with the girls we already had their nurseries done, and we were pretty organised. This time... well, we're taking it a bit easier - but I'm not wishing the time away. Knowing this is our last pregnancy, I'm trying to savour each kick and wiggle and bump, because I know how much I'll miss it when it's gone. I do love a pregnant belly!

Halfway!

Ah, that point in pregnancy that feels like it took forever to get to - and still that the end result is so far away! 20 weeks and baby is doing well. Our anatomy scan went well last week and everything appears normal. We are measuring bang on for dates and she is wiggling away, even though my anterior placenta means I'm not feeling a great deal. What I DO get is lovely though.

I may be biased, but damn, this kid is a cutie already. Today's ultrasound saw her sucking her thumb and everything - you forget just how much they do even when they're tiny in your belly. How lucky are we?

Well hi, baby girl. We can't wait to meet you! 

18 weeks with Bebe #3

Whoops! I spring that big news on the blog and then I disappear on you again... baby brain in full force, as per usual. Though if I'm honest, it never really went away - and my big baby is 6 now. (OMG.)

Yes, I just said 6. It feels like just yesterday we were childless and in the throes of infertility and now here we are, with a 6 year old and an almost-3 year old. What a ride! Our current belly-baby is also a little girl - and we're due at the beginning of January. I have my bets that it'll end up being a December bub, though we'll have to wait and see how that pans out.

It was a bit of a process to decide whether to go back for a third baby. I had spent the last year working on my health and fitness, and with the help of a gastric sleeve, lost 45 kilograms, getting to the lightest weight I've ever been in my adult life! We also had the 6 frozen embryos sitting on ice from Claire's cycle, so constantly paying storage fees brought up the subject of 'what to do?' every six months or so.

In the end, we came to an agreement. We would use our frozen embryos up, but we wouldn't be doing any more fresh IVF cycles. If they worked, great. If they didn't, well, we have the girls, and we figured it was a sign that we were done.

We didn't tell anyone we were going back to try again - the pressure was on, and honestly... we were just dealing with it in our own way this time. Since these cycles were our last chances, so we kept it quiet and went ahead with preparing for a FET. I went on a HRT cycle similar to last time, with progesterone supplements and regular bloods. We transferred a little embryo on Easter Monday, one of our 4-day embryos that was thawed and grown out into a Blastocyst over night before the transfer. It was a lovely little thing, and the FS and Scientist both looked happy with it. All we could do was wait.

As usual, I couldn't wait and was peeing on sticks a few days later, watching a line incredulously appear. First transfer round this time - is this even possible? It was a rocky few days of low numbers (as per usual in the Jag household... I guess someone has to be at the bottom end of the bell curve for hcg levels?) but all looked to be rising. Then the bleeding started. And when I say bleeding, I mean haemorrhaging. I thought it was over on multiple occasions - clots, gushes, days of bleeds. I was diagnosed with a SCH and told it was 50/50, but lo and behold, baby kept growing, its heart started beating, and we held on.

Our NIPT at 11 weeks came back low risk, and that's how we discovered that we were having a third little lady baby - crazy! Once again, I thought it was a boy - wrong 3/3 times! I'm currently 18 weeks along and we have our Morphology scan next week, which I'm a little anxious about - just praying for a nice healthy and happy baby in there.

And that, friends, is where we're at. Welcome back to the crazy ride!!

SURPRISE! Baby #3 is on its way!

We have been growing a new human for the past few months and are SO excited to share all the details with you. 
Baby #3: arriving January 2020!

Is This Thing On?

Well, hasn't the time flown! It's 2018 - my girls are growing like weeds, Georgia is 5 and Claire is 19 months old now. I swear, I blinked and my babies disappeared.

It's bittersweet, this growing up business. On one hand, I love seeing their personalities emerge as they learn new things. On the other hand, babyhood is fleeting, and I am so sad to put that behind me.

We have been working with some amazing small businesses on Instagram, which is why the blog has fallen quiet as of late. But what better way to bring it back to life, than by sharing the love here too?

Without further ado, here are my two beauties, modelling some stunning handmade pieces.

 Georgia wears:
Dress: Me and E (Mama10)
Claire wears:
Top: Lullaby Riot (Claire10)
Bow: Doubletroublebows2 (Claire10)

Chalk and cheese, these two. I still don't know how I got so lucky! :)

Eleven Months Old

I am the slackest mama ever when it comes to blogging lately - but I have been working with some amazing brands on Instagram and I can't wait to share them with you!

In the meantime, Clairebear is 11 months old and edging ever close to the elusive first birthday. My baby girl amazes me every day. Seriously.. how did I get so lucky? :)


Ten Months Old

That moment when you blink and your baby girl is just shy of a year old... yep, we're at 10 months and I have NO idea where that time went. Life is good, there are lots of updates to be made, but for now, here we go:






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