I'm Ready When You Are!
That's basically what I have been telling my baby this entire week! I don't think it is possible for my family and I to be any more ready for this baby to arrive! We made holiday plans, did our shopping and decorating earlier this year and in a much more organised way because of our anticipated arrival.
Emotionally and physically, I'm feeling very done with this pregnancy. I have no qualms in sharing that, even as a doula! I'm prepared and confident that baby will arrive when ready, but yes, I'm starting to feel impatient! I feel like everything is in place now and we're all waiting for the big event. I cannot wait to meet this baby whom I've been growing and nurturing for nine months! My older children are also excited and my five year old has asked multiple times "is the baby coming tonight!?"... followed by a deep sigh. Pregnancy can certainly be a lesson in patience, for more than just expectant parents!
My uterus and baby have officially "dropped." This is when a baby lowers into the pelvis in preparation for birth. It's amazing how much lower my abdomen looks when you see me from the side! I am able to breathe easier as a result, however, I'm not particularly enjoying the other sensations this has welcomed! My pelvis is much more sore, I'm finding it more difficult to move around and my lower back pain has definitely increased as the weight of both my uterus and baby is distributed differently. I also have a lower back injury which adds to this pain. I regularly remind myself that all of these symptoms are signs that baby will be arriving very soon!
WHAT'S COMMONLY GOING ON AT 39 WEEKS
Congratulations! Your baby is considered full term this week and is weighing in at 7+ lbs and approximately 20 inches long! At this gestational age babies will continue to put on weight to help them regulate their body temperature following birth. They may also engage or "drop" into the pelvis, as noted above. If you don't feel like this has happened to you yet, do not despair, as engaging into the pelvis is something that can happen weeks before labour begins or shortly before- everyone's body and baby is different!
Expectant mums will commonly start to notice pre-labour signs during this time. You may realise you have more mucousy discharge from your vagina. This is more than likely your mucous plug loosening in preparation for birth! You may also feel more pelvic pressure, lower back pain, insomnia, have to visit the loo even more (is that possible!?) and feel your body slowing down as labour approaches. These last few days can feel really tiresome! On the flip side, you may also find that you are going nesting crazy! A surge in energy shortly before baby arrives is also very common! Some mums will experience more Braxton Hicks contractions, commonly called "practice contractions," as labour nears. Other mothers, like myself, haven't felt these much at all during pregnancy! If you feel your contractions are starting to become more regular and increasing in intensity, definitely make sure to take note of them and time them so you can decide when to call your midwife, doula or head to hospital if you think labour may be starting!