how we had planned to spend early labor: pumpkin carving

31 Oct

When I would tell people that John and I had planned on passing the time of early labor by pumpkin carving, they would react in a way to convey that they thought I was completely insane.  Pregnant woman full of baby contacting every so many minutes–not a person you want to see wielding a knife.

But one great suggestion I read was to have projects to keep me distracted and at home for as much of early labor as possible.  Especially for first-timers, early labor can literally last for days (and still be perfectly normal), I believe on average 8-12 hours.  Contractions can last as little as 15-30 seconds in length and be 5-30 minutes apart (again, gross generalizations).  And then there’s the active labor part of stage one (before the actual pushing) that normally lasts 3-4 hours for first-time moms.  So, I thought, I’ll cook, I’ll bake, I’ll carve pumpkins with the hubby, I’ll finish packing for the hospital, I’ll take a bath, I’ll read Harry Potter, I’ll take a walk, likely taking a break during contractions once they become intense…anything to keep me from showing up at the PETU (Perinatal Evaluation and Treatment Unit, a.k.a. the pregnant woman’s ER and check-in place during labor) too early, only to be sent home, as what happens to over 90% of first-timers.

And then there was the early labor that never was–both supremely lucky and terrifying.  [I’m hoping to soon slap together my recollection of the birth day.]  Such items as bras and pants didn’t even make it into the go-bag so, needless to say, our three little pumpkins did not get carved.  We’re therefore hoping to enjoy this Halloween craft together when John gets home from work.  Me thinks it will be more difficult to carve between feedings than between contractions.

The lantern above took me, mmm, maybe six hours to complete?  This year’s model will be, must be much, much simpler.

Happy Halloween to you and yours!



4 Responses to “how we had planned to spend early labor: pumpkin carving”

  1. eklinman October 31, 2012 at 5:55 pm #

    …i am in awe of your awesome pumpkin carving skills.

    • annaojesus November 1, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

      Whoa, that means so much coming from you–you are a true artist! I learned yesterday that all the cramming during med school must have squished any previous pumpkin skills out of my brain…at least, I blame med school 🙂

  2. phantomdiver October 31, 2012 at 6:48 pm #

    Me too! Dang, that is gorgeous! Sheesh, the woman is a med student, she sings, she’s wicked smart, and she can carve pumpkins TOO? What kind of paragon are you, anyway?

    But don’t feel bad if you never spend that kind of time on a jack-o’lantern again. You will have more important things to do. When I had little kids, I kept beating myself up for not doing big creative things. I’m now realizing that six hours doing something like that without kids is nowhere near as important as six hours reading to kids, laughing with kids, tucking kids in, singing silly songs with kids, and just generally being a family. Probably nobody is going to remember what you did with that six hours no matter what you do, but either way, it’s a brick in the wall.

    And you have only so many bricks and so much time with little kids. Which wall do you want to build?

    • annaojesus November 1, 2012 at 12:15 pm #

      Well…I could carve pumpkins, once upon a time 🙂 You’re too nice to me! But I absolutely agree. Right now I would never trade the six plus hours a day I spend with my own personal heating blanket asleep on my chest, breathing on my neck. It’s the best! I hope you had a fabulous halloween!

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