I left off exactly one month ago , just shy of 36 weeks pregnant. And here I am, still massively pregnant and bouncing at my desk on a birthing ball on my due date!
This past month has felt fast. I know people often feel like the end of pregnancy drags on foreveeeeeer, but it has felt much quicker to me this time – probably because we waited so late to do so much!
Here’s how things were ticking along at week 37…
Somewhere right around then I got hit with a wicked sinus infection that left me feeling really horrible for about two weeks. I wasn’t able to take any medication to help with symptoms, so I did my best to manage with a Neti-Pot and several boxes of tissues. It was miserable, and I couldn’t sleep for longer than 30 minutes or so at a time.
Here I am looking sick and tired at week 38… (same sweater – oops!)
We certainly waited much longer than most people, and much longer than we did the first time, but we finally kicked it into gear and got a lot done during this final month. Cullen still has the crib in his room, but other than that his room has been totally switched over to his “big boy room” and he absolutely loves it. We spend so much more time in there now!
The nursery is painted, organized, and ready to go – other than the crib, of course. Our plan is to transition Cullen out of his crib in another few months, and until then baby brother will sleep in a pack n’ play in our room (which is what Cullen did for the first few months too). It feels really good to finally have our space feeling settled!
We also brought out the baby swing, installed the infant carseat, and got a few other things out – mostly just to get Cullen familiar with them and used to them being around (also so there wasn’t quite so much change all at once). I’m glad we did this early, as we’ve had to teach him gentle rocking, swinging, etc. using stuffed friends like Elmo, and with some practice he’s starting to understand.
If you had asked me how I was feeling during week 38, I would have told you that I thought this little guy was coming early – “any day now.” I felt super crampy and uncomfortable, and by the end of the night each night I could barely walk from the couch to the kitchen to refill my raspberry leaf tea. But clearly I was wrong, as two weeks have passed and there is no baby here!
And then week 39 hit, and I felt totally normal again! Enormously pregnant, but “normal” for the end of pregnancy at least.
I’m laughably gigantic now, and anywhere I go, people ask me when I am due. For whatever reason though, I am one of those people who enjoys the end of pregnancy the most. I know a lot of people hate it and wish it away, but both times it has been my favorite part. My belly is huge and ridiculous, the kicks and rolls are non-stop and sometimes leave me breathless, and I’m drinking at least two gallons of water a day. But something about the end just feels so comforting to me.
Also – look at how deceiving maternity clothes can be! Depending on whether or not my shirt hugs my body, I fluctuate between looking simply “very pregnant” and looking like octo-mom. Funny!
And that bring us to today – 40 weeks! I am not entirely surprised to be sitting here pregnant on my due date, since big brother was fashionably six days late. And unlike the first time, I don’t really feel any sort of anxiousness or rush. I know he is going to be here in the next two weeks, and until he is, I’m taking it one day at a time – soaking up time with Cullen, and making sure we are as prepared as possible.
The biggest source of anxiety to me is just not knowing how or when labor will start, and how quickly it will progress. Now that we have Cullen in the picture, the logistics of laboring and getting to the hospital are much more complicated. He’ll be going to his best buddy’s house, and I feel 100% comfortable with their care and our plan, but I still wish the whole WHEN and HOW weren’t so up in the air. Despite having a horrifically long labor the first time, I’m actually hoping for a rather slow start this second time around so that we have time to get him settled, and then shift our focus to helping our new guy arrive.
I’ve had a lot of people ask if we’ll have family here to help us afterward this time. When Cullen was born, we ended up with a full house due to his late arrival, and we spent our first week with all three grandparents here with us. This time we’ll be on our own for a bit, and while that sounds slightly daunting, I also think it is going to be really important – particularly for Cullen’s adjustment – to have some time together as just us four.
My mom will be coming out in a few weeks for Cullen’s birthday, and then other family will start trickling in during the weeks after that. Casey is hoping to get one week off from work, and possibly a second week working from home. We have lots of friends who are eager to help with meals, playdates, and more, so while I know it will be challenging, I’m not feeling too overwhelmed (famous last words?). We will figure it out as we go!
So that’s where we are today! Casey had a conference call this morning and wasn’t able to snap a picture, so here is what 40 weeks looks like in all its Instagram glory…
I had an appointment this morning to check on my progress and talk plans with my midwife. The good news is that I seem to be moving in the right direction (much more so than last time!), which was really encouraging. Baby boy still seems very happy and comfortable, so I will be patient while he continues to get ready. I opted not to do any labor-inducing extras today, and am just going to wait and see how the next few days go. I’ve been staying really active and walking the 3-mile Greenlake loop a few times each week, so hopefully those things are helping.
My next appointment is a week from today, and at that point (if I am still pregnant!) I’ll have an ultrasound, non-stress test, and appointment to talk about where we go from there. If I’m still pregnant at 42 weeks, I’ll be induced. But (knock on wood) I really don’t expect it to come down to that.
As far as news from our camp goes, I will certainly be updating once our new guy arrives! And I might give an update once things start rolling – we’ll see how it goes. Last time I tweeted a bit during the beginning of labor, but I’m planning on being a lot more focused and disconnected this time. Two years ago I felt quite a bit differently about privacy, parenting, and the internet in general – and well, live and learn, right?
I’ll still be here chattering away until that time comes! Thank you so much for all your well wishes, support, and kind thoughts during this big time in our lives. Here’s hoping this is my last pregnancy update for a long while!
Gestational age today: 40 weeks!
Total weight gain: 35 pounds
Baby clothes washed: Everything through three months – all other clothes sorted and organized into new storage bins
Baby items purchased: Newborn diapers, hospital outfit, and new pacifiers
Baby name contenders: One – we are finally settled. Thank goodness!
Things on my calendar: Absolutely nothing, other than a prenatal massage tomorrow in hopes of hitting some pressure points.
Clothing left that fits: Two pairs of jeans, two sweaters, and two long sleeved shirts. Zero bras and underwear.