Week 39

Total weight gain: 53 lbs

Baby’s Weight: 7 lbs

Percentage through pregnancy: 97.9%

Time until due date:
+/- 6 days

Food of the week (a.k.a. size of baby): Bigger watermelon

Pregnancy symptoms:

— Been feeling what I assume are contractions, or mini contractions. Only a few times a day, nothing to get excited about. A coworker took me out to lunch yesterday and I couldn’t eat because I was so nauseous and my abdomen was cramping up. The same thing happened at dinner that night. I can’t quite pinpoint when the pain begins and when it ends, so I don’t think the cramping is even close to the real thing. And I typically pass gas after each cramping episode. Does that mean it’s NOT a contraction? I don’t know!!

— Had two bad nightmares one night. In the first, I gave birth to a malformed baby chicken that broke apart in my hands when I touched it. In the second dream, my headlights went out on a dark, curvy mountain road, and I couldn’t stop the car. I felt the car go over a cliff and realized the baby was in the back. NOT COOL.

— A friend asked whether everything pretty much sucked right now. And, really, it doesn’t. I’m not running marathons, but I still feel pretty good. I have lots of energy. I’m sleeping well. Physically, I can definitely do this for +/- one more week.

— But I’m getting a bit antsy about meeting Charlie. Before 38 weeks, I was basking in the glow of THE SURPRISE. I loved not knowing when he would make his appearance. Then at 38 weeks I started wondering why he hadn’t made his debut yet, even though I still had two weeks to go! Makes no logical sense. I attribute part of this to my fear of having at least a week of maternity leave before my due date in which I’d have nothing to do. More on that later.

— I broke down one night over how hard pregnancy can be. I could not turn over in bed without major effort that left me huffing and puffing. My hips ached. My back throbbed. I was itchy. I couldn’t decide whether I was overheated or freezing. I just felt so…down. Charles gave me back scratchies into I got settled and I was able to fall asleep.

39-Week Appointment:

— Midwife checked my cervix. First of all, I have to say this process was nowhere near as scary or painful as I’d heard. It was just like getting a Pap Smear or a vaginal ultrasound. I’d go as far as saying it was more comfortable.

— No dilation yet, but I’m 70% effaced. Charlie is at -1 station, which means he’s dropped a bit. Midwife thinks I’ll go into labor before my induction date (5/28, one week after Charlie’s due date), but who knows?

— Final appointment with her next Friday at Week 40. Non-stress test to monitor the baby and my amniotic fluid would occur the following Monday or Tuesday. If all is OK, induction would happen that next Friday. :/

Worry of the Week: I feel as if I’m hurtling toward that induction date. That my body will not go into labor and it will have to be started artificially. There’s a worrisome trend that induction inevitably leads to a C-section because your body just isn’t ready to go into labor yet, and a bunch of complications arise. I’m trying to keep an open mind, but I really hope that my body does what it’s supposed to do! Think happy dilation thoughts!

Maternity Leave: This was a pretty emotional week for me. I woke up Monday morning and thought, “This is my last Monday morning for 13 weeks! OMG.” I’ve been working since I was 15, even while going to school regularly. I’m the kind of person that NEEDS stuff to do, that needs to be needed at work. So much of my self-confidence is wrapped up in Jess, The Employee. How am I going to make the transition? What if I hate it and want to go back sooner? Does that make me a bad mom? What if Charles and I want to kill each other?  Will my coworkers forget about me? Decide they don’t need me?

At this point, I regret that I decided to take a week off before my due date. What am I going to do? The nursery is finished. The bag is packed. The car is fixed (finally!). I have vague plans to clean and make casseroles to freeze, but really no drive to do any of that (which makes me doubt that labor is near — no nesting instinct!). And if Charlie’s late, there’s potential for another week of nothing to do. I’m such a go-go-go person. I don’t know how to relax. I could have saved these days for when the baby is actually here.

Pregnancy moments of the week:

Kirsten had her beautiful baby girl on Friday. She’s been a great belly buddy over this journey, and I’m filled with such gratitude that her little sweet pea made it into this world safe and sound. On Friday, I cried all the way to work thinking about that little girl. Congrats!

— Saw the documentary “Babies” and loved it! It made me feel liberated — that I don’t have to be the perfect mom in order to have a thriving child. Babies all of the world live with cows, and sleep with chickens, and eat rocks off the ground, and they are fine! I’m really glad I was already pregnant when I watched the movie. If not, we’d be getting busy ASAP. zomghormones.

— I received an interoffice envelope that was stuffed with breast pads. It had no name on the front, so for a few minutes I had zero idea where they came from. Then I found a tiny Post-It buried within the pads that said “Love, Jules” It was the most random moment of the week, and I laughed for a good five minutes. Thanks, Jules!

— One thing I’ll miss not being pregnant is the camaraderie that other women feel toward me. I was introduced to a woman at work, and within a minute she shared her key to an easy birth: “Push like you’re making the biggest poop of your life!” Um…thanks!

— Was talking to my Boss when a Braxton Hicks contraction hit, so I had her touch my rock-hard belly. She was astounded. “The biologist in me is fascinated by this!” I thought it was a sweet moment we shared.

— My mom invited me to Vegas — in mid June. Think about that for a minute.
Her: I’m thinking of taking a trip to Vegas, maybe the second week of break (she’s a teacher). I don’t mind going alone. I’m fine on my own.
Me: Gosh, it’s been so long since I’ve been to Vegas…..
Her: Oooh, do you want to go with me?!?!
Me: Um…..

Baby Milestones:
Your baby’s waiting to greet the world! He continues to build a layer of fat to help control his body temperature after birth, but it’s likely he already measures about 20 inches and weighs a bit over 7 pounds (boys tend to be slightly heavier than girls.). The outer layers of his skin are sloughing off as new skin forms underneath.

Pregnancy-related Tweets:
— New habit of eating PopTarts each morning, partly because it’s selection C5 on our office vending machine. 🙂

Photo Break:
May be the last photo of my pregnancy. Taken on Mother’s Day. 🙂

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