Monthly Archives: May 2012

Getting stressed

I hate arbitrary mandates. In this case, my state has laws which basically come down to this: if I hit 42 weeks and am still pregnant, I have to transfer care to an OB/hospital. If I am with an OB at 42 weeks I don’t know of one who will do anything but be annoyed I was “allowed” to go so long and will try to induce me immediately. If an induction is truly needed, I am completely fine with that, and I am so glad we have modern medicine for those times it is needed. But I have a hard time with being induced (more than doubling my risk for a c-section along with other increased risks) because of a blanket deadline applied to all women. Increased monitoring? Great. But a cut-off date for all women and all babies with no regard to individual circumstances? Not so easy for me to swallow.

And 42 weeks is getting close. Baby girl has seven more days to come out on her own.

I realize seven days is a long time. But when four weeks have already passed of waiting, it doesn’t feel like much time left. Especially when the most likely time to go into labor has passed.

I see my midwives tomorrow. I’ll ask them to do a membrane sweep. I’ll talk to them about castor oil and acupuncture. We’ll try to get things moving. And I really, really hope it works.

Even better, I really, really hope I never get to that appointment because I’m in labor!

I am SO GLAD I was charting when I was trying to get pregnant. Most pregnancies are dated by LMP (last menstrual period), and a due date is set 40 weeks from LMP. Now obviously when you have your period doesn’t matter since baby doesn’t exist at that point, what matters is when conception happens and baby starts growing. LMP is typically used because it is much easier to note and remember than ovulation, so almost all women can give it. An LMP calculation assumes ovulation happens at 2 weeks after your period, which is a fairly typical ovulation timeframe for most women. I, however, ovulate 3 weeks later. And since I knew my ovulation date precisely, we used that to calculate my due date (it being more accurate). This means that I am only 41 weeks pregnant tomorrow. Going by LMP, I would be 42 weeks pregnant on Thursday. In fact, if I had not learned about natural birth, learned to chart, and chosen midwives to deliver my baby, I almost certainly would have been induced last week on the assumption that I was 41 weeks along, since most OBs don’t like you going past then. I am so grateful I educated myself enough to allow myself and baby girl more time to let things happen as they will.

I still love being pregnant. LOVE being pregnant. Sitting here and feeling baby girl wriggle is the most incredible feeling on the planet. If I knew for a certainty that she would be out before 42 weeks, I would not be stressing in the slightest. I am not “ready to be done” in the traditional sense. But I do want to have this baby now, only so that I don’t have to have her in a hospital hooked up to drugs and monitors. And I am a little sad that the stress of this looming deadline is causing me to spend less time cherishing these last days with baby girl inside of me.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to try and zumba this baby out.

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Things which are going to be weird

No more fists and feet pushing out of my belly.

My stomach back in my stomach.

Being a parent. (I still don’t really believe this one is going to happen)

Not feeling my daughter wriggling whenever I lie down.

Being able to suck in my belly.

Putting on socks and pants without forethought or planning.

Waking up every hour to feed a baby instead of waking up every hour to pee.

Looking flabby instead of looking great.

Having a lap again.

Seeing my daughter.

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“Due”

Happy due date to me!

Still no baby. Which isn’t a big surprise. A due date is an average. That means half of all women will give birth before it, and half will give birth after. I guess I’m in the second half!

After all, the E in EDD stands for estimated, not expiration.

I will say, however, it is very fun to watch strangers’ expressions when they ask when I’m due and I say, “Today.” One poor high school girl yesterday jumped when I told her, “Tomorrow,” and got very cautious. She clearly thought that meant I WAS having the baby the next day, and was waiting for my water to break in a dramatic gush and me to start hollering in pain and needing someone to¬† catch the baby right then. Oh, Hollywood. I think tomorrow is going to be even more fun!

Keep enjoying your stay in there, baby girl. You’ll be coming out to play before too long!

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Present

I am 39.5 weeks pregnant, and I have to say: I still love it. I love carrying and growing and nurturing this tiny life within me.

Sure, it’s painful. And awkward. And limiting. And uncomfortable. There are a lot of negatives.

And in many ways, I can’t wait for the next stage. When I was in first trimester I wanted to hit second so I would be less likely to lose her. Then I wanted to show more. And to feel her move. And to see her for the first time and learn she was a she. And to see how big my belly could get. And now to meet her. There’s always another next step right around the corner I’m looking forward to.

And yet, despite all of this, I was so aware that this pregnancy was temporary, and I cherished it and was present in each day of it.

I acknowledged the negatives, but didn’t let them drive away the joy of the positives (even if those positives were hard to find at the moment).

I looked forward to the next stage, but didn’t let that keep me from loving and living fully the present stage.

This is how I want to live my life. Conscious of the bad but focused on the good. Planning for the future while living in the present.

I don’t know why that balance is so much harder to find in life than in pregnancy. Maybe because I’m less aware of how temporary this life is.

But I do know I have lived this pregnancy the fullest I could. And as it comes to an end, while I will miss it greatly, I can also look back and say, I wouldn’t change how I lived any of it.

I hope that, at the end of my life, I can look back over my time on earth and say the same.

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