Week 38

Total weight gain: 52.6. I’m such an overachiever.

Baby’s Weight: 6 pounds, 11 oz

Percentage through pregnancy: 95.4%. My iPhone app doesn’t even give survival percentages anymore. This week, I downloaded a contraction timer!

Time until due date:
13 days. Yay!

Food of the week (a.k.a. size of baby): Still as big as a watermelon (because what’s larger than that, really?); length of a leek

Pregnancy symptoms:

— This week blew in terms of insomnia. For three nights in a row, I could not fall asleep until about 5 a.m. This always feels worse to me than waking up after a few hours of sleep because I know I’ve at least slept a bit. However, I rallied and dragged myself to work. Because I’m awesome.

— I can definitely notice slight swelling in my ankles and wrists. Still, my midwife complimented me on my still ankle-like ankles.

— Charles made an incredible homemade soup the other night. I totally WON at eating it as we leaned back on the couch watching TV, because I have this ready-made shelf that can hold bowls.

— Starting to feel a bit more crampy, and I’m getting some twangs in my pelvic region. Don’t know if it’s anything; it could just be gas.

38-Week Appointment:

— Midwife asked if I wanted my cervix checked for dilation and effacement. I declined. Really, what’s the point? I’ve heard it’s super uncomfortable, and it’s not like it gives any clue as to when I’ll go into labor. “Unless you find that I’m walking around at five centimeters,” I joked. “Ha, you wish!” she retorted.

— Found out that my HMO schedules an induction at 41 weeks if the baby is late. If everything looks OK, they’d let me go to 42 weeks if I insisted, but I’ve never really had any strong opinions either way about induction. Plus, I’m sure at that point — two weeks into maternity leave with no baby — I’ll be antsy enough to meet him. “Plus,” midwife said, “everything in there just starts to get old.” So, that means Charlie will be a May baby no matter what!

— Next week is the last time I see my midwife, unless by some miraculous luck she’s working in L&D when I go into labor. I have really enjoyed seeing her over the past nine months, and I feel like getting her some kind of gift to say thank you. Is there a protocol for that? Any ideas what to give that isn’t too over the top, but also isn’t corny (insert Starbucks gift card)?

Worry of the Week: That I’m making all of these plans for after he’s born, and what happens if something goes devastatingly wrong?

Pregnancy moments of the week:

— The cousin of my cousin was killed in Afghanistan. Never knew him, but I sobbed when I watched the video of his funeral. In it, his mother spoke about how much she loves him and how she knows they’ll meet again “in God’s presence.” I can’t even imagine losing a child, and the thought of this strikes me with such a cold, desperate fear that I can do nothing but cry.

— That being said, I also sobbed uncontrollably when I watched “Pretty Woman.” You know the part — when she finally kisses him on the mouth and whispers that she loves him. OMGTEARS. Seriously, I had to drink water after the movie ended because I was so dehydrated.

–In the midst of my insomnia this week, Thursday crawled into bed at one point and cuddled in the crook of my arm, right under my chin. I spent about an hour (before my body throbbed from being in one position for so long) petting her and cooing, trying to appreciate the tenderness of the moment. Because when is the next time that we’ll get a night-time cuddle session? The cats will be banished from our bedroom as long as Charlie is sleeping in there. I’m going to miss my orange floof pants.

— Speaking of Thursday, she got jealous when Charles and I practiced swaddling (see pic).

— Like 95% of the population, we failed at installing the car seat correctly. Officer Nunez set us straight. Apparently, you need to check your car manual for whether the seat should be installed with the LATCH system or the seatbelts. Note to Volkswagen Jetta owners: Seatbelts. I also royally screwed up the car-seat straps when I tried to put the seat back together after a washing. Note to self: Take pictures BEFORE you dismantle anything! And if you’re wondering, that’s a stuffed dog in the car seat.

— Officer Nunez also nixed my plans to have a car-seat mirror so that I can see the baby when I drive. Apparently, they become dangerous projectiles in car accidents. Who knew?

— Another funny story at the car-seat inspection, which we attended with fellow expectant couple Jason and Sarah. When Officer Nunez asked us to find the car manual, I started digging in the trunk and came upon the jar of pickles that a coworker had jokingly gifted a few weeks back. “Oooh, my jar of pickles!” I exclaimed. Jason and Sarah busted up, thinking I was simply a crazy pregnant woman with random jars of pickles in her trunk. Then I started laughing, and when that happens I can’t hold in pee. So there I am, hunched over, trying not to piss my pants with a jar of pickles in my hand.

— During a meeting at the Zoo this week, someone exclaimed surprise that I was still working so close to my pregnancy (which seemed weird; I was more than two weeks away at that point). One of their marketing folks retorted, “That’s OK. If she goes into labor, we have vets.”

— At another point in the meeting, I waddled up to the breakfast buffet and asked the bartender (of coffee, tea, and OJ) if he could make me a vodka tonic. I have never seen a more unimpressed look in my life.

Baby Milestones:
Your baby has really plumped up. He weighs about 6.8 pounds and he’s over 19 1/2 inches long (like a leek). He has a firm grasp, which you’ll soon be able to test when you hold his hand for the first time! His organs have matured and are ready for life outside the womb. Wondering what color your baby’s eyes will be? If he’s born with brown eyes, they’ll likely stay brown. If he’s born with steel gray or dark blue eyes, they may stay gray or blue or turn green, hazel, or brown by the time he’s 9 months old.
Quotes of the Week:
— “You didn’t fucking tell them anything, did you?” Charles, when I mentioned the midwife asked me a domestic violence questionnaire.
— “Give me about two weeks, and I’ll have one for you.” Me to my mother, after she lamented that she was still searching for a man to love.

Pregnancy-related Tweets:
— Having one of those moments where it boggles my mind that I have a tiny, squirming human being in my belly AND THAT I GREW HIM.

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