I’m 38-going-on-39 weeks. It’s amazing how these last weeks of pregnancy tend to blend together. My sister and I were joking the other day that at the beginning, you know exactly how far long you are, by the day (“I’m 5.5 weeks!”). And you breathe multiple sighs of relief whenever you hit a major milestone. Now, each day feels a bit like the last, except now when people ask “When are you due?” I say, “Next week.” Weird.
Dave commented that it feels like only in the past two weeks people out in public have actually begun to gawk. Many strangers ask when I am due and or they just blatantly stare at my stomach (eyes up, people!) Of course, I’ve been milking the I-actually-look-pregnant stage as much as I can. This Sunday, while driving home, the oil light came on in the car and I pulled into a gas station where an extremely nice attendant helped me top off in between helping customers. And when taking the car the next day to get the oil changed/checked (there was a leak), the nice man at AAA said he would try to get it done asap because “You shouldn’t have to wait in your condition.” Ha. I decided not to tell him that I feel perfectly capable. Instead, I said thanks and waddled away. Dave and I also braved the crowds at the RBC Center to see Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson show (a birthday present from my parents!). This involved walking quite far from the parking lot, marching up and down multiple flights of stairs (because our seats got reassigned) and walking halfway around the arena to finally get to our tiny stadium seats. Piece of cake (almost).
Also, and surprisingly, I feel great. I thought I would be MISERABLE as I entered the “dreary” trimester. I’ve heard so many women say how sick they are of being pregnant by the end. And these poor women are likely working full time and/or rearing other children. But this isn’t my case. I feel awesome. And I’m going to miss my awesome round belly.
All the aches and growing pains I’ve felt over the last few months have ceased. I’ve only gained 29lbs so I still feel pretty limber. I can (mostly) breathe, except when walking uphill. No constipation. Limited heartburn. No stretch marks on the belly. Sleeping hasn’t been terrible. I’m measuring right on time and blood pressure is low. I’m still pounding the spicy food. But along with that, there’s been very little action. At my last appointment, the midwife noted that the baby hadn’t even dropped. I have a few Braxton-Hicks contractions a day but I’ve been having them for weeks (and they just feel like your belly has gotten tight….nothing else really). I declined a cervical check at my last appointment, though I am tempted to have one done this time. We’ll see. I don’t really want to psyche myself out, especially since I’m pretty content.
But because very little has been happening to indicate that birthing time will happen soon, I don’t want to risk induction if I go two weeks late. Going late is fine by me, esp. since average gestation for first time moms is 274 days from ovulation (or 41 weeks and 1 day from LMP). And only 10% of babies actually come on their “due” date. So, according to more recent studies, the babe is most likely to show up around March 30. I think I can handle that, as long as no one is trying to stick me with pitocin. I imagine the midwives will be pretty restrained.
Either way, though, I’m starting to walk more, doing daily pelvic floor exercises and stretches, sitting primarily on an exercise ball, keeping my stomach hanging forward (rather than lounging on the couch) to encourage an anterior position, mapping my belly, listening to my hypnosis scripts and affirmations, seeing a chiropractor once a week (to keep my hips in line) and drinking larger doses of red raspberry leaf tea. Last night I ate half a pineapple, which is supposed to ripen your cervix (yum) and I may opt for some acupuncture at this week’s chiro appointment. I may also start using evening primrose oil. So, I’m not exactly sitting around passively waiting. But I am happily waiting, relishing in these last few weeks of this unique time.