Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Pregnant Leanne: Week 30 - Exam anxiety

December 29, 2009: Week 30 of pregnancy

I’m falling behind on my homework. At least, that’s what it feels like. Knowing that the baby is now ‘viable’ if it were to be born now is packing on the pressure. The biggest exam of my life could be sprung on me at any moment and I’ve barely studied! Am I in way over my head?

At our last appointment, our midwife gave us this folder discussing topics ranging from perineum stretching to placenta delivery and the various infections that can kill me or the kid right after birth. Like a nerdy student, I actually put a Post-It note on my calendar on week 36 to ‘remind’ myself to start stretching that perineum! I’m only at week 30 in my What to Expect… book. I’ve still got Baby’s Best Chance to read. And I received a baby product consumer report book for Christmas. Ahhh!

On the bright side, we’ve got a bassinette, bath, sling, clothes and diapers. So if the baby makes an early entry, we’re good to go. I just hope there’s no quiz at the end of it all!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

You could win $100 for kids wear

Did you know there's a contest going on? urbanbaby & toddler magazine and Agoo Apparel are proud to offer you a chance to win a $100 shopping spree for Agoo kids' wear.

Enter by Dec. 31, 2009, midnight. Click here to enter. Don't forget to tell all your friends!

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Pregnant Leanne: Week 29 - Zen and the art of Christmas

December 22, 2009: Week 29 of pregnancy

I’ve always been a listmaker. In the nerdiest way possible, I get excited each year to buy my new yearly planner agenda book. However, all this living in the future makes it very difficult to be in the moment. I’ve tried yoga. I’ve tried breathing exercises. I’ve seen glimpses of ‘being present’ but nothing forces you right into the ‘now’ like being pregnant.

If we travel back to Christmases past, I would have started thinking about who’s getting what in September and would have felt very anxious if I didn’t have everything wrapped up, literally, by November. Fast forward to Christmas now and it’s all very Zen. Sure, I thought about what to give everyone but only as far as my baby brain would allow and certainly not in October, when my sole focus was getting through the day without collapsing. Go to the mall? Nope, I need a nap. Dash off to this or that store now? Nope, I’m swinging by that area on Friday and will do it then. I’m quite enjoying this tra-la-la state of mind. Yes, my gifts are wrapped but not a lick of anxiety and I’m actually looking forward to Christmas!

My new yoga? Feeling my baby kick and knowing this is the only place I need to be right now. Zen.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Pregnant Leanne: Week 28 - Times are a' changing

December 16, 2009: Week 28 of pregnancy

I’m embracing a 24-hour clock. This decision was not a quick or easy one. My days are defined by time. As a trainer, my sessions are scheduled. My shifts at the gym are scheduled. I know I have to leave for work at a specific time to not get stuck in traffic. Bedtime is 10 pm.

But this scheduled way of thinking is not working for me anymore. Up to this week, I’ve felt guilty about my afternoon naps. I’ve been assuming that my sleeping in two hour 'bouts at night was down to my mid-day indulgence. Before pregnancy an afternoon nap guaranteed a rough night. No longer! Big revelation! I don’t sleep well regardless! After a teary breakdown of utter exhaustion on Sunday night, I surrendered. I’m going to sleep when I’m tired. Naps are now a necessity. If it’s 7 pm, it’s 7 pm. I’ve promised myself I will no longer schedule anything between 2:00 and 4:00 pm. The baby moves, I have to pee and things are no longer on my timeline. In fact…yawn…time for a nap!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Delivery room dilemma: Would you watch your sister give birth?

My sister is pregnant. We are all thrilled!

She has mentioned that we, her sisters, are welcome to be in the delivery room when the big day arrives. While two of my sisters jumped at the chance, I held back. Why? I am, after all, the founder and editor of urbanbaby & toddler magazine, a mother with two children of her own, and also her sister. And here I sit, admitting I'm not exactly saying, "Pick me! Pick me!"

I'm squeamish about seeing my sister in the throes of labour and delivery: it's messy, loud, and stressful. I know! I've been there. I would be there in a heartbeat, if she said directly that she wants me there, but she hasn't. So, it's up to me.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

BC announces expanded newborn screening program

According to a news release distributed by the Provincial Health Services Authority on Dec. 4, 2009, newborns in British Columbia will now be screened for more treatable metabolic diseases and other medical conditions. That's good news for future moms-to-be. Here's an excerpt from the release:
The BC Newborn Screening Program, a service of the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA), has expanded screening from six to 18 disorders, using the same simple blood sample already collected shortly after birth. Over the coming year, the program will screen about 40,000 newborns in B.C. and will likely identify about 40 babies with one of these 18 treatable conditions. In October 2010, a 19th disorder (congenital adrenal hyperplasia) will be added to the list of screened conditions for newborns. This follows through on a commitment made by Premier Campbell in July 2008 for the additional screening tests.

"This program provides newborn babies in British Columbia with their best chance for a healthy life, right from the start," said Ida Chong, Minister of Healthy Living and Sport. "With specialized treatment, newborns identified with these disorders can avoid serious complications, such as development problems, liver malfunction, brain damage, respiratory problems and even the risk of sudden death."

Here's a list of the treatable disorders that will be screened for among newborns in BC since the expansion of the program:
1. Congenital hypothyroidism
2. Galactosemia
3. Phenylketonuria (PKU)
4. Glutaric Aciduria Type I (GA-I)
5. Medium-chain Acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (MCAD)
6. Long-chain Hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (LCHAD)
7. Very-long chain AcylCoA dehydrogenase deficiency (VLCAD)
8. Citrullinemia
9. Tyrosinemia I
10. Homocystinuria (including second-tier testing)
11. Argininosuccinic Acidemia
12. Isovaleric Acidemia
13. Maple Syrup Urine Disease (including second-tier testing)
14. Propionic Acidemia (including second-tier testing)
15. Methylmalonic Acidemia (including second-tier testing)
16. Cobalamin disorders (CblA,B) (including second-tier testing)
17. Cystic Fibrosis
18. Sickle Cell Disease
19. Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Pregnant Leanne: Week 27 - Grumble

December 8, 2009: Week 27 of pregnancy

I remember reading in my copy of What to Expect When You’re Expecting that I could expect mood swings. Moreover, in my sixth month, I could expect "fewer mood swings." Up until this month, I can’t say I’ve felt particularly moody. Even my partner Scott can attest that I’ve been a bit on the teary side but otherwise lovely (and no, I wasn’t holding a knife to his throat when he said that!).

This week however, I feel different. I guess, in other things including my baby bump, I’m a late bloomer. I’m not just moody -- I’m the definition of irritable. Although Scott slides by unscathed, I can’t say the same for me. Just last Thursday, I caught myself saying out loud to the participants in my boot camp class, "If I have to correct your posture one more time, I'm going to freaking lose it." I actually said, "Freaking lose it." Luckily, they thought I was joking and it turned into a wonderful teaching moment...FOR THEM!

Drivers also annoy me. My staff is annoying me. The trainer at the gym who asks me twice a week, "How the pregnancy is going?" and always exclaims how "excited" I must be. Well, I answer, Nothing’s changed since Tuesday, when you last asked me. Yes, I’m excited. It’s so exciting. We are so freaking excited. Thankfully, I’ve been able to maintain my inside voice on that one and be my normal polite self. For now.

I’m waiting for the joy and peace of Christmas to wash over me. I don’t think I can stand all this excitement.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

urbanbaby & toddler's online mag now clickable!

This new is big. As big as when I first started the magazine. As big as when we doubled our circulation a few years ago.

urbanbaby & toddler's online version of the magazine now features links to all advertisers. Check out the issue at www.urbanbaby.ca and click directly through to advertisers' websites from the magazine! That means easier access to the advertisers about whom you want more information.

You can also search the contents of the current issue by just putting in keywords -- the search will take you directly to the matches.

See? I told you this is big.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Pregnant Leanne: Week 26 - Four rounds with the cervix

December 1, 2009: Week 26 of pregnancy

I never gave my cervix much thought. Before getting pregnant, I knew that I apparently have one and, in a hazy way, where it is, but that was the extent of it. Now that the baby has taken to kicking and sitting on it, I now know exactly where my cervix is.

What an odd, gross sensation. This baby loves to hang out down there right when I’m going to bed. I tried hiking my hips up, but then my lungs were being crushed and I couldn’t breathe.

Round 1. I’ve tried rolling onto my side, but that seems to really get ‘it’ going.

Round 2. I’ve tried encouraging the baby, with upward massaging strokes on my belly, to move. It didn’t.

Round 3. I asked my midwife the other day and she recommended I try the "on the knees, bum up, head-down" position of many sleeping newborns, and it worked!

My hubby is hoping all this kicking is a sign that the baby is going to LOVE soccer and be really, really good at it. I told him ballet dancers kick too and I got a sarcastic scowl in return. Couldn’t resist!