I have now only 12 days until my official due date.

I am so nervous,
mainly because last week the doctor told me my amniotic fluid level was only 4.5, and wanted to induce right then. I’ve been planning another home birth and he was not too happy with that news- so I told him I’d think about it and talk to my hubby and midwife and get back with him.  Midwife put me on bedrest and told me to push water, electrolytes, and up my calories.  Went in to midwife yesterday and she did a non-stress test- all went really well plus my belly grew a LOT in three days!   I think the doc and she are worried because “I’m old.”   (Funny, I don’t feel old yet!)

The feelings you have while preggers after miscarriage are so crazy.  Never a peaceful moment.  I second guess everything and it makes me a little crazy.   (OK, maybe a lot sometimes…)  I’ve been so careful with this pregnancy- I see the midwife, OB, and acupuncturist every week now!

On a lighter note
some sweet friends gave me a fun baby shower last week.
Lots of goodies and great stuff to eat!
I hadn’t been to a baby shower in twelve years!   (You don’t expect many when all your friends are in their late 30’s and up! 🙂  It was fun to get to be silly and look at tiny clothes again.

Tomorrow I go back to OB and he’ll do another ultrasound and see what AFL is.  After doing research I realize this is the new way to get people to be induced, but on the other hand it is truly dangerous if it’s genuinely low (but the ultrasound is not a very accurate measuring method.)

So if it is low tomorrow will be our baby girl’s birthday…
Really hoping all’s well.  I don’t want to force her to come before she’s ready AND I’d love for another home birth.   Plus, we don’t have a name picked out yet! 

Wish us luck!

Surprise! (Or What my Hubby Got for his 21st Anniversary)

On our 21st anniversary I gave my hubby a cute little stick with two lines on it…

(You can get pregnant at 42!  And here I thought menopause might have been the cause of my tiredness and queasy feelings.)

We’ve lost 7 pregnancies in the past,
so obviously we were very leary to tell the kids or even our friends this time.

On our fall break we told the kids why mommy wasn’t riding any rides at the theme parks. 

I’m now 17 weeks pregnant and healthy baby and momma so far.
I’ve been seeing the acupuncturist once a week, regular OB visits, and midwife visits so think I’m covered.  I had to be on progesterone shots for the first 14 weeks, and think that’s the key for me.
(With both my boys I took shots.) 

I’m still scared-
and just now the fear’s wearing thinner allowing myself to be,
So happy,
and So excited.

The funniest part?
My due date is April 1st!

Life is amazingly strange and wonderful! 

On 39 Weeks (Birth Stories Condensed) & Giveaway!

If you know me you know I am huge advocate for natural childbirth.  
Having given birth to three healthy kids I thought I’d share my experiences.

It was so hard for me to carry to term.  Due to a hyper auto-immune
system and crazy hormones we’ve suffered seven losses.  Just last year we
had a tiny son born before his time come into the world and leave it
before his first breath.  We were given a 4% chance of ever having a baby, so my children are like precious gifts.

With our first- I wanted to have a home birth, but our family was too terrified, so we went with a hospital and doctor.  We did the Bradley method classes with a wonderful midwife, made a birth plan, and went to a doctor that claimed to understand it all.  Ha.  (I won’t go into details on that one but let’s just say he wasn’t ideal and kept saying to hurry up so he could go duck hunting…)
The ONE good thing he did was let me carry my girl to term. 
“Don’t you want to pick her birthday?”  he asked.  “Everyone is doing it.”

Emily, true to her nature, was stubborn and at 42 weeks still wasn’t going anywhere (despite castor oil and daily long walks.)  So, the doctor induced (which I don’t recommend- Pitocin makes for horrific contractions when you are opting for no pain meds) and twelve hours later a beautiful, healthy, stubborn girl was born.

Second birth- we were going with a midwife/hospital birth but insurance changed and we had to switch to a doctor/hospital birth.  The baby was breech.  Also being stubborn he refused to turn when the doctor (yes, a different and wonderful one) tried to point him in the right direction.   At 40 weeks I went to my acupuncturist to try and get him to turn and while on the table he moved into the “ready” position!  The doctor decided that he wanted to induce at 41 weeks (again, I have to say Pitocin is not fun – I did have a epidural for him which I also don’t recommend because it was scary and didn’t help pain) and 12 hours later Max was welcomed into this world.

Third birth- I wanted the whole natural route with midwife at home.  At 39 weeks I went to the acupuncturist again to start inducing me to prevent another hospital induction.  It worked!  A week later during one of the worst ice storms in ten years I went to bed with a little tummy ache, woke up thinking “Am I in labor?” and then decided I couldn’t be because- a) there was almost no pain,  b)My midwife was in Japan and c) The baby wouldn’t come on Christmas eve, right? But… “honey, call the midwife chain just in case and put on the Hypnobirth CD…”
Sweet baby Jacob was born in the most beautiful, comfortable birth I can imagine.  At home, at 40 weeks.  Healthy and happy.

If you’re pregnant (or thinking of it) please remember that a baby carried to at least 39 weeks has a much better chance of making it without complications. 

What can you do to prevent a pre-term (before 37 weeks) birth?

From my midwife:
“Best way to avoid preterm labor is eat enough protein,
especially deep sea fish all through pregnancy and most importantly
avoid infections of the vaginal canal. Smoking and bad nutrition can
lead to preterm labor also.”

What are my suggestions?
-Get pre-natal care right away.  (Doctor or midwife)
-Eat right
-Ask friends, nurses, midwives, ladies on the playground, who they suggest as an OB
-Make sure to check out the Healthy Families website for wonderful information on pregnancy, early childhood development and more.  You can also order a paper copy if you are someone who likes to have a book to highlight!  🙂  I can remember using this book during my first pregnancy and highlighting every step of the way!

Now for the good stuff…

Enter for a chance to win this great basket containing:
– Graco baby bag
– Pampers Swaddlers for newborns
– Winnie the Pooh baby blanket
– Thermometer
– Nipple cream
– Two pacifiers and a clothes clip


  1. Leave a comment below and remind me what you did to enter (A must!)
  2. Follow my blog! (1 entry)
  3. Tweet about this give-away #HFNow @ThePanamamama(1 entry)
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  5. “Like” my Facebook Page  (1 entry)
  6. Like “Healthy Families Now”on Facebook (1 entry)

You can do most of the above by clicking the cute buttons in the top righthand corner too…
After seven years of blogging this is actually my first give-away so I’m going to be actually drawing a name the old fashioned way!  Good luck!

*Disclaimer… I am not an expert and don’t claim to be.  I was given this great bag of goodies to give-away by Healthy Families of Arkansas.  None of the opinions expressed above are influenced by anything other than my own experiences.   Winner will be drawn on Friday, 9th of November! 

The Heart That Wouldn’t Quit…

I haven’t been wanting to write about this…

I went to my specialist (reproductive endocrinologist) to have my 3rd ultrasound…  

Background info:
I have P.C.O.S.  along with a small tumor on my pituitary gland that causes all sorts of hormonal havoc.  After I realized when I was in my 20’s that five years is not a normal time frame for most people to get pregnant, I started asking questions.  
“Are night sweats normal for a 24 yr old?”
“Shouldn’t I have more than 3 cycles a year?”

No doctor would listen.  I was thin, healthy in all other ways.  They did no tests and told me it was normal.  (IT IS NOT.)  
I started taking herbal supplements for menopausal women and in a matter of months I was pregnant with my Emily.  

When she was two we started trying again.  

Three years and four miscarriages later I got mad. 

I researched online and in libraries and read two wonderful books “Taking Charge of Your Fertility” by Toni Weschler and “Women’s Bodies-Women’s Wisdom” by Dr. Northrup when I realized I had P.C.O.S.  It took almost year and a half to get someone to test me for it.  And the result?
“Oh, we are happy to tell you we discovered your problem.” 
“Hmm,” I said.
“P.C.O.S.!”  the doctor beamed.

Not wanting to do anything the doctor wanted me to (drugs, drugs, or drugs)  I changed my ways. 

  • No red meat.  (Organic wasn’t available then, probably would be fine but I still avoid all red meat.)
  • No milk but organic milk.  (Stopped drinking soy milk also because it has estrogen like components.)
  • Almost all organic veggies.
  • When I’d start getting hot flashes I’d use natural progesterone cream for a few months.

Guess what?  I got pregnant with my second, then third kids.  
I also demanded progesterone shots and took a daily baby aspirin.

Healthy miracle babies later I thought I was over all this.
I got pg in early December and thought it would be okay this time, now I knew what to ask for.
Two, almost three months later at my 3rd ultrasound…
“No heartbeat.” the doctor said and walked out of the room.

In his office he had the nerve to say:
“I didn’t do anything wrong, there’s nothing I could have done.
“This happens with OLD moms.”  
  *In my head: (“Hey doc, have you not been my doctor for 11 years or even read my record?  The other four miscarriages were in my 20’s!”)
“There’s nothing I did wrong.  There’s nothing I did wrong.  Nothing I did wrong.” he said.
“Any questions?”
I was in shock.  Too upset to cry. 
My mom said in the lobby…
“That jerk didn’t even offer you a Kleenex.”

My conclusion. Infertility sucks.  So does P.C.O.S. (And most doctors even worse.)
Even if I do feel broken and inadequate right now,
I have an awesome mom who worries about me having a tissue,
I have three wonderfully, miraculous, phenomenal kids, 
I have a supportive, loving, sexy, husband who loves me.

THEY are my heart that won’t quit.