14 days until due date
Thirty-eight weeks today. It doesn’t seem real, while at the same time it definitely feels like the pregnancy should be over and done with. This last month has been the most challenging and the most incredible period of time for so many different (and completely opposing) reasons.
From the thirty-six week mark onwards, there is this feeling of, “any moment now” and although that feeling is so freaking exciting, it is also such a cruel form of torture that is utterly inescapable. Every moment is one of anticipation and disappointment because, in every moment there is the potential of going into labour.. or not.
On Monday, I had my first minor contraction. The only way I could think of describing it is: you know the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland?
Well, imagine his smile reaching from one side of your belly to the other and that is where you feel the movement. Then, imagine his straight teeth and that is where you feel the pressure and direction of the contraction pain. I excitedly called Pete and told him that I had experienced my first one and waited patiently for the second one. For the rest of the day right up until this very moment, each of the contractions that I have felt have not been too clear, have been varied in intensity and irregular.
Later that day, Pete messaged me and told me that he was so distracted by everything that he was going to come home early from work. He has been home from work all week – bless his little heart. The emotional toll that these last few weeks has had on both of us is full on and not what either of us were expecting, Pete especially. The desire and want of meeting our son is all-consuming. And, even though you try to distract yourself and not think about it and be patient, you can’t help but imagine the moment when you go into labour and when you are holding your little person in your arms. It is full on and exhausting.
We ended up going to hospital the other day because I hadn’t felt our little man move for a number of hours. Not only that, up until then he has had a very distinct pattern of movement. Every midwife that I have spoken to has said that as soon as a baby’s pattern of movement changes, you need to be aware of it and monitor it. I was concerned that I hadn’t felt him so we headed into hospital and I was hooked up to a monitor that recorded his heart rate and his movements. Of course, as soon as I lay down on the hospital bed the little scallywag woke up and couldn’t stop kicking me. His heart rate and the scan was all perfect and everything is fine.
As torturous as the last few days have been, simply because of how madly in love we are with our baby boy and want to meet him and kiss his little butt cheeks and smell his head, Pete and I are both so incredibly excited. Even if I go full-term, his arrival is only fourteen days away. FOURTEEN. It is just that with everything ready (pram sitting in his room, car seat in Pete’s car, hospital bag packed and in Pete’s car, all of his little washing done), the reminder of his imminent arrival is unable to be avoided. Every time we sit down to watch a movie one of us will say, “Not long now until our little man is lying down here with us”. And it’s so true, it isn’t far off at all but that doesn’t make the longing of it any easier.
I had also expected to be really motivated during this month and a bit that I have off before Bub arrives. I imagined myself writing and going for swims and going for long walks. Well, I can tell you that that pretty much hasn’t happened. My brain is so consumed with trying to NOT think about going into labour that there is little to no room for creativity. I am so exhausted that the idea of writing makes me yawn (I am forcing myself to type this right now). And the heat has been far too much for me to handle that I can’t go for a walk without giving myself heat stroke and if I am out in the sun, in a pool or the ocean, my skin is so delicate at the moment that I will burn to a crisp. Instead, I have felt the overwhelming desire to clean the house every day. I know, weird. However, my house is super clean. Most days I have spent like this:
Breakfast at the cafe for about three hours
Grocery shopping/few hours of cleaning the house and chores
Sit down on the lounge to read/draw/watch something
Watch a movie with Pete
Sleep (not really)
That is about all I have energy for anymore. My fingers have swollen andI had to dramatically yank off my rings before they got stuck, and my knees and ankles and feet have also become a tad more engorged than usual. It’s all very glamorous, really.
Anyway – I don’t have a whole lot to report on other than that. I have read a lot of books and am yet to post the reviews of them. I have wanted, so badly, to create so much in this time but what I have realised and learned is that you need to pay respect to this last bit of pregnancy. It deserves all of your attention and love and care and it has really taught me how important it is to look after yourself, not just when you are mere moments away from pushing a kid out of your vagina, but always.
Hopefully, the next time I have the energy to write to you all, I will have my son in my arms.
All my love x