Actually, according to the OB-GYN, my due date is today. However, the OB-GYN and I are basing our dates off of different information, and I know for a fact that mine is more accurate. So I'm really due tomorrow. :)
Today is my last day in the work office. If lil' Snoke hasn't arrived by Monday (which I'm starting to think will be the case), I'm just going to work from home. I think my coworkers are starting to get a little nervous about me being in the office with my labor expected to start at any time. And I understand their nervousness. Especially for the ones who have not been pregnant or had a wife/SO who's been pregnant. I mean, really, before learning what I needed to know for my own pregnancy (which included the first half of my nine months), I was definitely under the impression that labor happened like they show in the movies. BAM your water breaks or BAM horrible full-blown contractions start and within one hour there's your baby. (For those of you who are still under that impression, the truth is that it very rarely happens like that. Only about 10% of women have their water break before labor, and in most cases labor starts out slow and easy enough that you can stay at home for hours before heading to the hospital.)
I'm actually quite calm about the whole thing now. When I first reached the point where I was considered full term, I got sooooo anxious. I was like, holy cow, my baby can come at any time. All of a sudden there was this great urgency and I was so excited I could barely see straight. I knew he was allowed to arrive at any time and would be healthy, so I wanted him OUT and I wanted him out NOW.
Now, three weeks later, the anxiousness has faded. The reality that he can come at any time (but ISN'T) is simply old news. I've adjusted. No more nervous nights of me twiddling my thumbs, searching for something, anything, to do. I've quit hoping every day that today will be the day. Not because I don't care, or because I don't want today to be the day, but simply because a person can only handle so much of that type of excitement. Eventually it must fade and you must settle back into life. Which is what I've done. I've become used to it. The state of being in constant limbo is now familiar and comfortable. So now I'm ready, but I'm a calm ready. Which is probably much better, anyways. :)
In any case, hopefully I will be providing you all with a birth announcement sometime soon. The day is definitely coming!!! :)
Went to the doc yesterday. Had the awkward exam that every pregnant woman sort of wants but really doesn't want. And the results? I am a whopping ZERO centimeters dilated. Yes, that's right folks. His words were, "Nothing yet. You're completely closed."
COMPLETELY CLOSED??? SERIOUSLY???? So all this horrible cramping and back pain and contractions have done NOTHING??? Oh, this is just stupendous. Just wonderful. Labor is going to be awesome. I don't get to skip the first 3 to 4 centimeters like the majority of my friends. Nope, I get to go all the way from 0 to 10 in one shot. Sweet.
Then I mention to the doc that the baby hasn't been moving near as much as I'm used to. The doc asks, "Have you been doing your kick counts?" I told him that yes, I had, but that that is what actually concerns me. In the past, the baby has always been so incredibly active that I haven't had to do kick counts. And now all of a sudden I do need to do them. The doc asked if I got the proper number of kicks when I did do the test. I said yes. But then he said he still wanted to do some fetal monitoring.
So then they hook me up to this machine with two belts around my stomach. One measures the contraction level of my uterus, the other measures the baby's heart rate. They also gave me this little stick with a button on the end and told me to push the button every time I felt the baby move. The nurse said, "As long as baby cooperates, you'll be on here for about 10 to 15 minutes. If baby doesn't cooperate, then you'll be on here a while longer. After that, if baby STILL doesn't cooperate, then you get to go to the hospital so THEY can do the monitoring." I responded, "Well, let's hope he cooperates, then!" (Hospital! I don't want to go to the hospital!! But cooperate? What exactly comprises a baby on a fetal monitor "cooperating"?? Come on Krewson, COOPERATE!!)
So I sat there. And sat there. The nurse brought me some juice and I guzzled it down. Then I sat there some more. The baby didn't move. No budge, no nothing. The doc came in after about 15 minutes and looked at the chart that had been printing out from the machine. He responded, "Well, it doesn't look bad, but it doesn't look as good as we'd like it to." Great. "Just sit there a while longer."
Well at this point I started getting a little anxious. I'm like, ok baby, you didn't cooperate for the first 10-15 minutes. You now get one more shot. If you don't cooperate now, we have to go to the hospital. PLEASE COOPERATE!!!
After another 10 long minutes of waiting, he finally started to wriggle and roll. I was like, oh, thank goodness. He did a roll here, a roll here. A couple jabs at the belts on my waist (like I've mentioned before, he does NOT like things protruding into his space). I got to push the button quite a few times. And then the doc came in, took a look, and said, "Ah, that's what we want to see. It looks good." Thank the Lord. He stopped the machine and unhooked me, then told me I am to do kick counts three times a day, and if at any time I feel concerned I am to come back into the office for more monitoring.
Needless to say, I left the appointment feeling a bit frazzled. Zero centimeters and one long half-hour of waiting to find out if my baby is ok are a but much on the pregnancy hormones. I went home and cried to Dave for a little while, then I felt better. He acted really goofy and silly to cheer me up. As much as I hate it and get annoyed while he's doing it, it usually works. It's hard to keep crying when your husband is bouncing around saying insanely stupid things.
Ah, the drama of being pregnant And soon I will leave it to join in the drama of being a parent. :)
Now, I don't know if this is atypical for pregnant women, but I've discovered recently that I have the ability to suck my pregnant belly in and up...really quite far. I'm somewhat proud of this achievement. :)
Pretty impressive, eh???
I've also discovered that Krewson is laying so incredibly low in my belly at this point that I can completely flatten out my abdomen at my ribs, to the point where it's pushed back to where it was before I got pregnant. It then leaves my belly jutting out, providing a flat surface that works wonderfully as a little shelf. :) Check it out:
Haha ok does anyone else think that's just WEIRD-looking?? My body is so strange!!!
Just wanted to share my belly skillz. Hey, a 39-week-2-day pregnant girl's gotta find SOMETHING to keep herself entertained!!
Just wanted to let all you devoted readers know that as of 3:05pm today I am still pregnant and not in labor. :)
Today is Dave's birthday (happy birthday to my hubby!) and tomorrow night we are having a small get-together for him, so hopefully Krew will decide to wait until at least Sunday to get things moving. (Although he technically has another week until his due date and can wait even another week or two after that before the docs will kick him out.)
Yesterday when the doc walked into the exam room for my 38 week checkup, he took one look at my belly and his immediate words were something along the lines of, "Well, you're just about done cookin', aren't ya?!" I thought to myself, "If you are referring to the size of this gigantic thing protruding out of the front of me, commonly referred to as a 38-1/2-week pregnant belly, then YES, I am just about done cooking. PLEASE GET THIS THING OUT OF ME." But instead I smiled and provided my typical, cheerful Kara response of "Yup!" Internal sigh.
The doc appointment went well. I've gained 37 lbs and seem to be holding steady there. Not bad. He said it's a couple pounds over what they recommend but I look fine so he's not worried. He said he thinks I've got a "good-sized baby in there" but that my body "looks good" so he's not worried about the fit during labor. (What exactly does that mean, that my body "looks good"? That my pelvis has appropriately expanded to the point where I'll never fit into my pre-pregnancy jeans again? That I look fit enough for a 36-hour labor marathon to get this "good-sized baby" out of me? Huh? What does that mean??)
But really, it was probably my favorite doctor's appointment so far. It was with a doc I'd never seen before, and he really was soooo cheerful and put me completely at ease. When looking at my chart, he even looked at my job description and asked what I do, sounding as if he really cared. I was like, holy cow, how many doctors actually take the time to even pretend to care what I do for a living?? Ummm....NONE. This guy was probably the first one ever. Which immediately shifted him into the position of Kara's new favorite doctor. He is now my top choice for the delivery of my baby. Not that I get to choose. It's luck of the draw...whoever is on call that day/night, that's who I get. And there are 8 doctors. Which puts my chances at 1/8 = .125. Hmmm...not great. But one can be hopeful. :)
I didn't get any tips as to whether he thinks I'll be on time, early, or late. In fact, he didn't check my cervix or anything. Which, I must be honest, I didn't really care about. First of all, those type of bodily "checks" are not overly fun or comfortable. Especially with a male doctor. Second of all, even if I am dilated or effaced, I've read and heard enough to know that it doesn't tell you much in terms of when your labor will occur or how long it will take. So I don't really understand the point of the cervical exams anyways.
Things I can tell you are that I am cramping daily, some days much worse than others. Back aches come and go. Lots of Braxton Hicks contractions that are getting stronger and stronger. But no pattern to anything yet. So we'll see. Hopefully this lil' Snoke doesn't plan to stay in there TOO much longer. :)
Supposedly (I've read), I'm not supposed to be growing much more until the baby is born. I beg to differ. I feel like every morning when I look in the mirror my abdomen is extending 5 inches farther than the day before. The elasticity of the female body is truly amazing. I have yet to develop any new stretch marks to join the stretch smudge between my belly button and my belly piercing hole. I keep smothering on the lotion twice a day, praying my belly can make it another two to three (or four...dear Lord, please not four) weeks without the skin breaking any more. The stretch smudge continues to get darker and larger, and now has some little lines shooting out of it, but if I can contain my stretch marks to that then I will be one happy woman.
I worked so hard for so long to prepare for Krew's arrival, and now I've found I have everything done and nothing much to do. Work is all caught up. The house is clean. The nursery is ready. I know how to use the carseat, stroller, and bouncy seat. The monitor is set up and has been tested. I've read pages and pages on pregnancy, labor, and caring for a newborn. I even took notes on some of them and saved them in a Word document for easy access later. (Am I extreme? Yes, at times.) We've trained and prepared our dogs (yes, I bought a book on how to do that, too, and we went through the steps). We took childbirth and breastfeeding classes. I've made lists of people to contact after the birth. I've written my birth plan. I've packed my hospital bag. The list goes on and on. And now all of a sudden I've hit the end and I'm like....ok...now what?? I feel like I'm just twiddling my thumbs. Our evenings and weekends are pretty much clear because you can't exactly make big plans when your baby is due to pop out any day. Thank goodness for my Tuesday Bible study. I'd probably go insane without at least one busy evening during the week.
I think my next plan of action is to continue reading books on caring for newborns and to cook some meals and start freezing them. That will at least fill SOME of my time. Anyone want to provide some other suggestions?? Or want to provide some freezable meal recipes?? What on earth did all you other women who have had babies do during the last couple of weeks???? Help me!
Yup, the belly keeps growing!! Here is its size as of today:
37 1/2 weeks
Miscellaneous information I've read recently that I found interesting is the following:
*The fingernails and toenails actually begin to form on the palm of the hand and sole of the foot and then migrate to their final positions at the end of each digit.
*In about another week, your baby’s foot will be slightly longer than the length of his thigh. Take a look at your own thigh to see how big that is relative to the size of your feet. Such odd proportions will change somewhat after birth.
*Within the next three days, the circumference of your baby’s head will roughly match the circumference of its shoulders and its hips. After this time, the abdomen may be greater than the head. (Krewson's abdomen was already bigger than his head a month ago. Not sure what that means. Hmmm.)
Finally, I mentioned previously that I had a very nice baby shower in Raleigh a couple weeks ago, but I haven't shared the pictures yet. So here they are. :)
Chit-chatting at the start.
Kristin and her mom, Sally, who hosted the shower.
Me and the ladies responsible for the shower.
Playing some games.
The most amazing mocha drink ever.
(Decaf, specially made for me. :))
All the girls.
They made me stand up so my belly was in the picture. It looks massive.
A couple of you mentioned that whenever I don't write a blog post for a couple days, you wonder if I'm having the baby. So I thought I'd write a quick blog post to let you know that no, Krewson has not been born, and yes, I am still pregnant. (And huge. And getting huger by the minute.)
I also just read that 95% of all babies are born within two weeks of their due date. We'll pretend for a moment that statistics never lie and that that number is in fact correct. (Being a statistician, I am acutely critical of any published statistics I read, but we'll go with it for the time-being.) Since some babies are born beyond 2 weeks after their due date, this means that there is a less than 5% chance of Krew being born prior to 38 weeks. That's this Saturday (five days from now). So...you can all breathe easy at least until Saturday. Once Sunday hits and you don't hear from me, you're allowed to start wondering. (And praying that Krewson is in fact making his world debut, if you so desire. :))
Dave and I finished up our classes this week. We had our fifth and last childbirth/childcare class and then also attended a breastfeeding class. I really enjoyed both of them...I learned a lot and they made me feel so much more confident about the life changes we're soon going to be facing.
My pregnancy symptoms continue to come and go. I have some days that are horrible, and others that are not so bad. The last 12 hours haven't been great. By the time we left class around 9pm last night to head home, the skin on my legs was stinging. I told Dave I knew my legs must be really swollen. We got home and I looked and sure enough, my ankles were so swollen that I could mold them like play-doh. I took a bath to relax and do some reading and propped my feet up. As I was doing that, I began to feel a burning in my throat, which quickly progressed to feeling like my entire dinner's contents were trying to climb back up my esophagus. Ironically, we were out of Mylanta, Tums, and milk. The only possible remedy I could find in the house was Pepto Bismol, which honestly didn't do much. As I was trying to fall asleep in bed, I was fighting the constant lump in my throat that was prompting me to throw up. (And strangely enough, the lump and reflux was easier to deal with when I was laying flat than when I was propped up. Don't ask me how that works.)
I couldn't fall asleep until after midnight (I'm thinking there was an abnormally large amount of caffeine in the "decaf" latte that Panera served me yesterday) and then woke up quite frequently to abdominal cramping and pelvic pain (which I attempted to relieve twice by getting up and using the bathroom). And then at the wonderful hour of 5am, I was wide awake, just laying in bed, staring at the wall. Thinking about who knows what. Babies. Feeding babies. All the changes coming up. Wondering when he'll make his appearance. I laid there until 5:45am and then thought this is stupid I'm wasting time, so I got up and began my day. I found that my ankles were still moldable (so much for swelling decreasing while you sleep) and that I was facing another random day of terrible pelvic pain. I got my zombie sleep-deprived self ready for work, headed out the door, and on the ride to work enjoyed the sudden return of burning acid reflux in my throat. I almost had to laugh. The symptoms never end. If it's not one thing, it's another. And yes, dealing with everything sucks once in a while, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It will all be over soon. And then I'll be holding my baby boy. Which I know will be so amazing. :)
So I don't think Krew has changed much from a week ago...he's just in there getting chubby and growing his brain a bit. He's actually full term as of tomorrow...isn't that awesome!! Way to go baby boy, we made it all the way.