|A few days old.|
I've wondered if I should write up an entry about giving birth in Japan. I was encouraged to read a lot of different birth stories from foreigners who did just that while I was pregnant. But, I'm not sure that I actually feel like writing up my whole birth story for anyone who stumbles on this blog to read. If anyone ends up here who is pregnant in Japan and wants more info, feel free to comment and get in touch with me. I'd love to help others get more info!
|40 weeks pregnant!|
What I will say is, the birth was difficult...not necessarily because I was in Japan. I do wonder if it might have been different somewhere else, but that is more because I gave birth in a rural area where the option I really wanted was not available. Someday, I still hope to have a water birth in a birth center supported by midwives instead of doctors. This time, I gave birth in a small clinic with a doctor. There are many women's clinics that do births in Japan. At mine, the first story of a pretty small building is the clinic, the second is where women are hospitalized postpartum, and the third story is labor and delivery. I was so fortunate to be able to have not only Joel with me, but also my good friend Cindy who both helped with labor and translated. I really didn't feel like there was even one moment where I didn't understand what was going on because of language.
|Proud daddy with his brand new son!|
|One of our great nurses!|
|Nathan and his buddy in the clinic nursery|
The most intimidating thing about going home was just how thin our walls are. After a week in a super climate controlled hospital room, something about our cold bedroom with the winter winds that can make things rustle right through the window panes seemed like a bad place to bring a baby into. We're still waiting our first electric bill, as this is the first time living in Japan that we've left the heat on 24/7.
|Our celebration meal at the hospital|
|Time just to snuggle and be together|
Within the last week or two, he's started making many more coos and baby sounds. He is most happy when I can settle in our rocking chair and he can go back and forth between eating, snuggling and sleeping, and perching on my shoulder looking at the light coming in the window. While he's perched he'll be making all kinds of coos and gurgles and even grinning from time to time...until he remembers that he likes eating pretty much all the time and then it transitions into him making his mouth into a little round "o" and trying to eat my shirt until I take him down and feed him. I was worried about feeling lonely with so much time alone at home with a baby--and I do miss more adult conversations--but there is a lot of peace at just accepting that right now what's best is snuggling with this little guy while he's little.
Up until this past week, we haven't been able to set the baby down without him crying. Luckily, he will snuggle in bed with us, so we've been able to sleep. I'm glad that I had done all the reading on co-sleeping before he was with us and decided I was for it (though I was a little nervous at first), because I don't know how we would have gotten any sleep otherwise. Now I can often set him down for an hour or two during the day and get a good nap in or get a few things done around the house. Speaking of naps, this one is over! But I was able to write much more than I thought. :)
|My little man :)|