Saturday, June 16
37 Weeks. Full term, baby! And full-term baby. Both of those work! Baby girl can be born at any time, and she will be fine! I’m started to reason with her: “Come on, honey. I can’t wait to meet you. But most importantly, my vagina can’t wait to meet you. Feel freel to head south soon, before you’re 10 pounds, OK?”
The midwife asked me if I’ve felt many Branxton Hicks contractions lately. I can only remember one, and it was weeks ago. I got up in the night to pee, and there was this intense pain in my belly, and the entire bump got hard. I stopped with a sharp intake of breath and a ‘What the hell is that?’ I took a few more steps, and it was gone and the belly went back to normal. Since then, nothing.
I’m still dealing with what I call the “crunchy pain.” It’s usually on the right side, at the top of the bump and starts when I’ve been sitting for some time, or if I hunch over/bend down. When it happens, I have to walk around and wait for it to go away. I always just assumed it’s the babe’s feet jamming into my guts, or ribcage or something. Sometimes, I can pat the area gently, and she moves and it goes away. The last two times, it was super intense, taking my breath away. I mean, part of me was like, holy balls, if I can’t take this, how will I take labor? I did my usual relief routine: get up, walk around, go to the bathroom. One of these sessions lasted 20 minutes. I was patting the area and suddenly it was better. The second one lasted 30 minutes. It took my breath away and made walking really difficult. I started to wonder, are these contractions? But according to what I’ve read, they shouldn’t be. For one, it didn’t stop after a minute or so — it was constant until it went away. And it’s in one specific area, not wrapped around my midsection. The second one went away while peeing. I felt it get more intense, then there was a “pop” sensation and it was instantly gone. This has happened to me before. What the hell is this?
Normal or not, it sucks. I don’t like not knowing what is going on. The first pregnancy is so mysterious. I have no idea what my pain threshhold is either. I’ve heard that redheads have a higher tolerance for pain. And since I’m likely to “just deal” with something (midwest roots) rather than call a midwife, my (insert organ here) could be exploding, and I wouldn’t even know it.
According to message boards online, it could be: the baby squishing my organs, my ribcage stretching, epigastric hernia or something called HELLP syndrome that I could die from. Awesome. The internet is an asshole.
We’re just about through our To Do list. We have a few baby items left to buy, but the major stuff has been collected. We have to still choose a pediatrician, but have an appointment to meet one next week. The car seat has been installed in the car, the nursery sports a gorgeous wall decall, and we have all the birthing “gear” set up that we’ll need for the big day. The chux pads are on the bed, the placenta bowl has been chosen (ewww…) and the delivery dress awaits …
We’re still on the fence about telling our families that we’re birthing at home. Some of our friends know, and I did tell my mother, but we haven’t shared it with DH’s family yet. It took my mom a few minutes before she’d let me explain our viewpoint and then she was like, “Well, your father was a home birth, and he turned out OK…” I was beyond shocked when I heard from my sister and she said, “Good for you!” She totally got it and said encouraging things like “You were a badass Derby Doll. You’ll be fine!”
I orignally said we should just keep it from everyone and then share the news after, but keeping secrets has always been tough for me. And so I’ve left it up to DH to tell his mom, brother, dad and stepmother. I just hope if they disagree, they give us a chance to share some information with them.
I’m more worried about one of our local friends “dropping by” during the big event. We figured we’d call our out of state families and let them know when the big event has begun, but we weren’t going to tell anyone else, for fear that our more adventurous friends would come over or something. We can’t have any distractions, which is why it’s just me, DH and the midwife. No support team. I’ve even got a sign to hang over the doorbell that tells people that silence is needed and to go away. Our hypnobirth instructer told a story about a woman who was making progress at home, and then the doorbell rang, and all progress stopped. It was a package being delivered! That is NOT happening to me. Now, what to do about the construction going on next door… or the neighborhood fireworks if this ends up a July 4th baby… oh hell, I’m so screwed…
So, while I eagerly await the baby’s arrival, let’s take a look at my ridiculous feet: