Month: November 2013

Would you find out the sex of your baby?

When I was expecting Rhys we both had a strong feeling early on that he was a boy and really wanted to find out for certain at the 20 week scan.  This time round I just didn’t quite have that overwhelming gut feeling.  I went back and forth most days between thinking it was a boy and then thinking it was a boy.  Saying that, whenever I pictured myself with Rhys and a new baby, that baby was a girl.

So we were really excited to get to our 20 week scan this time round and be told that my little mental image will be a reality in February!  

I’m so pleased we made the decision to find out what we’re having and that she decided to cooperate and let us find out!  But the question of ‘will you find out or not’ seems to be an issue that people feel quite strongly about!  Both my Mum and my mother-in-law would have preferred it if we hadn’t found out – although they are really happy now that they know there’s a granddaughter on the way!

There were mixed views when I asked over on my Facebook page whether or not people would want to find out the sex of their baby.

Several people told me that they didn’t find out and that they loved the surprise factor in not knowing and that ‘it made their births just more special’.  One comment that I loved was that they wouldn’t want to find out the sex the next time so it would be ‘something to motivate me through the labour!!!’

I know a lot of people like all the guessing that goes along with not finding out.  You can have so much fun trying to predict it with games like letting your wedding ring swing over the bump and letting other people place their bets based on the size and shape of your bump!  All of this can really add to the surprise too – when my Mum was expecting me all the old wives tales told her that I was going to be a boy and then – Surprise! – out I came!

It also seemed that some people will find out with one pregnancy and then not find out with the next, or vice versa.  My sister hasn’t found out with any of her pregnancies, but has said she probably would next time!  

The people I spoke to who did find out mainly did so for the same reasons as me.  I found that knowing I was expecting a boy before really helped me bond with him.  We also found that, in practical terms, it made things a lot easier.  We knew that we didn’t need to borrow the big bundle of pink clothes that were being shared around my family!  It also helped with the huge dilemma of choosing a name.  It was great to be able to just look at one half of the baby name book!  Saying that, I’m really enjoying getting to look at the other half of it now!

It did make me laugh to hear what one friend had to say about finding out that her twins were boys 
“We found out it made it so much easier with two but to be fair the pair of them didn’t give us much choice in the matter. They proudly displayed their wears during nearly all of the ultrasounds we had”.  It seems like sometimes the babies really want you to know! 

I suppose the thing to remember though is that, even if you do ‘find out’, it’s never 100% guaranteed!  A friend of mine who works on a labour ward told me that there have been times where the umbilical cord has been in the wrong place and mistaken for ‘boy bits’ and the parents have been very surprised at the birth!  

But for now I’m assuming that what the sonographer saw (or didn’t see!) is right and enjoy looking at the ‘girl’ half of the baby name books and cooing over all the pink clothes in the shops!

So what do you think?  Would you want to know what you were expecting?  Leave me a comment and let me know!

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Surviving the sniffles – dealing with a cold in pregnancy

Well I made it to 20 weeks but the change in the weather and the beginning of cold season caught me out a few weeks ago and I came down with my first pregnancy cold.  And it sucked!  I know it sounds a bit lame to be complaining about having a cold but seriously, when you can’t really take any medicine to help you feel better it really does suck!  
So, if you can’t just knock back some cold and flu tablets or a steaming cup of lemsip then what can you do to make yourself feel better when you have a cold during pregnancy?
I scoured the internet and asked around on Facebook for suggestions and here are my top tips.  Please bear in mind though, that I’m not a medical professional so, for your own peace of mind you might want to check with your midwife or doctor before going ahead and trying all of these.

  •  Rest.  As much as you possibly can.  Easier said than done if you already have an older child to look after.  Or a job to do.  Or a house to run.  But try and take whatever help you can get and pack yourself off to bed as much as possible.

  • Stay hydrated.  My husband always tells me ‘a pint of water, on the hour, every hour’ when I’m ill and this is really good advice to follow when you’re fighting a cold.  If you find drinking lots of water a struggle then try and knock back some orange juice instead to keep hydrated and boost your vitamin C intake.

  • To help sooth a sore throat you can try making a gargle out of 1 teaspoon of salt in a cup of hot water.  Or, and this is a much more appealing option to me, you can make a soothing drink with a tablespoon of honey and about 2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice stirred into a mug of hot water.  

  • The Common Cold centre at the University of Cardiff have found that a mug of hot, fruit cordial does actually help sooth sore throats and other cold symptoms.  Good excuse to break out the Ribena!

  • They also recommend eating a hot curry as it makes sure you salivate and reduces coughs and eases sore throats.  So if you’re feeling up to eating this might be worth a try!

  • To help with a stuffy nose you can try filling a bowl with hot water and leaning over it with a towel over your head so you can inhale the steam.

  • Having trouble sleeping at night?  Then you can put some vapour rub on the soles of your feet, pop some socks on et voila!  Apparently this can help ease a cough during the night and is a great trick to use on babies too!

  • My personal go-to remedy is to have a bottle of lucozade on the go, especially if you have to try and carry on with your day.

  • Rest some more.  If none of the above do anything much to make you feel better then, if at all possible, give in to it.  Get someone to make you a cup of tea or honey and lemon, grab some magazines and something non-taxing to watch on dvd and retreat to bed.   

Here’s to hoping  I can avoid getting another cold this autumn/winter.  Ha, very wishful thinking!  Please leave me a comment below if you have any tips of your own on dealing with a cold when you’re pregnant, I’ll be grateful for any advice you might have to offer!
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