39 Weeks Pregnant

(7 days until arrival)

Baby is fully mature (for a baby) and GOOD TO GO.

His skin is white – pigmentation will occur after birth. It is not longer pink as there is now a thick layer of baby fat covering up all the capillaries.

Those tear ducts that showed up last week? It turns out that they won’t be operational until sometime in his first month of life.

Baby will be a little heavier than last weeks estimated 7lbs. Lengthwise, he’s not really growing anymore, just putting on fat. So those chubby cheeks should be getting even chubbier!

I can feel baby’s head occasionally bounce against my cervix… It’s the weirdest thing – I can feel both ends of his movement. When he jerks and kicks me at the top of my belly I feel the inverse bounce between my legs!

I’ve started waking up hungry, but then not really getting hungry again during the day.

Starting on Tuesday, I started experiencing… Discomfort. Not contractions. More like pangs… Twinges… Cramps, really. Unpleasant. At my Doctor appointment, I was examined and was told that my cervix is softening, starting to efface, and that I was, in fact, 1-1.5cm dilated. That explains some of the cramps. My doctor said it was unlikely, though, that I would go into labour this weekend. I REALLY hope that to be true. He is away in Jasper for a conference this weekend and I want MY doctor present when I deliver…

There is NO WAY to know when I may go into labour. This is very hard to bear… Mike says he’s noticed a difference in me this week, but is unable to articulate what that is. A number of months ago I spoke about feeling my brain rewiring. It feels a bit like that is happening again. In preparation for labour? The baby? I’m not sure. I feel as though I would be in a permanent state if panic were it not for the fact that I am somehow chemically incapable of loosing my cool.

No real noticeable swelling this week. That said, I’ve been having increasingly unpleasant issues with my hands. They go numb if you so much as look at them funny. In addition to that, starting a couple of weeks ago, if I plucked my right wrist (for example in a pouring motion) I would end up with a horribly painful shredding/tearing sensation on the back of my hand in the muscle-y area between my index knuckle, wrist and thumb. After about a week and a half of this, it has gone permanently half numb and tingly. Now that I’m favouring that hand, it is happening on my left… I finally asked Dr. my doctor about it and he said it was likely the result of pregnany-related fluid retention. I was concerned about permanent nerve damage but he seems to think that it should return to normal after pregnancy. My forearms and hands just ache constantly…

I keep reading articles and posts in How to Prepare for Baby – in reference to these last weeks/days. Mostly they’re filled with superficial nonsense that is, in fact, far from useful. Making sure you have household supplies, set up a bunch of movies… It’s a bit frustrating but I suppose I should be reassured as I have not been given any reason to believe that there is anything I haven’t done.

I am extremely restless and have a lot of trouble sleeping. I even have trouble reading or watching movies at times – I just feel like I’m vibrating. I try to channel this nervous energy into useful forms like cleaning or organizing. For example, on Wednesday I swept, scrubbed the baseboards, cleaned all the dirty smudges that I could find on our lovely white walls, dusted the upstairs sofas washed the bedclothes and made cookies. Then, sweaty and out of breath, I made myself sit down and relax. Every day I make sure to do something and it usually turns into a whole lot of things. Mike tells me not to worry about keeping up with housework and just to take it easy but it helps to make me feel calmer and more prepared.

Baking is also a nice pastime. Who’s going to eat all the sweets?? No idea. *ahem* definitely not me…

At the doctor’s urging, I have been trying to squat for a period of time every day. I used to have lots of practice in this and was able to stay in such a pose comfortably and indefinitely. Not so any more. It is hard work and uncomfortable.

Mike was asking me this week what the plan was once I hit my due date, in terms of inducement. I will defer to medical advice on this. If the baby is still thriving, I see no reason to kick him out, he is obviously not done yet. If, on the other hand, the aging placenta begins not to be nourishing Baby then that’s a different matter. Ultimately, though, my own discomfort and feelings about *still* being pregnant won’t enter into the decision-making process. It’s all about Baby.


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