After 35 weeks of pregnancy you’ve already lost quite a lot of whatever dignity you may originally have had. Some days it’s the ‘little things’ that threaten to push you over the edge though. This is what they give you every single time you have any kind of a maternity check-up. Then they send you off to provide them with ‘a sample’.
This is your view looking down when heavily pregnant. And just to make it a bit more difficult, you’re often aiming whilst hovering awkwardly over a cramped public toilet… usually with an inquisitive older child observing the acrobatics with a confused expression on his face. And just when you think you’re done for a couple of weeks, there’s tutting about traces of glucose (Did you actually consume something with sugar in it today? What were you thinking?) or white cell counts . Next thing you know you’re booked in to produce a fasting sample the next morning. Even better. Now you can spend a heartburn-filled night without any Gaviscon and do this all again, only starving.
35 weeks. Really? It feels like a lot more. My weight gain has tipped me over into the constantly uncomfortable zone already. The couch is no longer a haven in the evenings. The exercise ball gets dragged out of hiding every night if it’s not too late to watch something by the time the Rascal finally falls comatose. In bed an extra duvet under me tries to absorb all the weight. There’s at least 5 weeks still to go before my due date, but it feels like we should already be there. I’ve had a couple of unsolicited comments from total strangers about my bump being low and the possible close proximity of labour. Firstly, not something I want to hear until this baby is grown enough to be ready to survive outside of the womb. But it would explain the intense discomfort that has me awake all night and moving warily for fear that lightning crotch will strike at any time. This little one is in position and seems impatient to get on with the business of being born. Me, not so much. Can’t wait to say goodbye to heartburn and be able to reach my toes again. Not looking forward to the process of getting this baby out into the big bad world though.
I remember the Rascal as being an active baby in the womb. Lots of kicking. Feeling uncomfortable. Thinking the baby was going to be very athletic with all the exercising being done. Either the memories have faded a lot, or number two aka Boo (the Rascal’s name for his unborn sibling) is going to be an elite gymnast. Boo is always on the move. The first sign of anything going into my stomach will trigger an immediate response. Try and lie down for a rest and there’s an inquisitive shove within two minutes. I wonder if Boo will ever stop moving and kicking me so I can get some sleep. Then I lie awake a bit longer wondering if Boo is okay, because there’s no movement. Go figure. The Rascal is what you might call a ‘terrible sleeper‘. As in it was 2.5 years before he ever once slept through the bulk of an entire night. All this nightly activity doesn’t bode well for my desperate hopes that Boo will be the polar opposite and be one of those dream sleepers. Can our family survive another 2.5 years of intense sleep deprivation? Let’s hope we don’t have to find out.
Meanwhile, my body is definitely telling me it’s time to slow down (demanding, actually). We’ve cut back on house viewings and the cleanliness of the house is about to drop dramatically. Not that our standards have been terribly high to start with. I asked my husband to carry a basket of clean laundry upstairs for me so I could put things away the next day. “Is there any ironing that needs to be done?”, he innocently asked. I laughed. A lot. “So… we don’t iron things anymore?”, he said. Eh, no. Not for a long long time. Not since I decided it was futile ironing anything for a child who barely gets the clothes onto him before they’re dirty. As for the adults. Well, after spending the time and effort ironing things it was just heartbreaking to see them finally get put away in drawers and wardrobes 3+ weeks later looking like they’d been in the bottom of the dirty laundry basket the whole time. Better to spend the time putting things away than ironing.
For now I’m lucky to be keeping on top of the laundry for three of us, with some additional loads as baby items come out of storage. Once there’s four of us and the cloth nappies are back in rotation I think the ironing board may end up gathering dust in the attic forever…
35 weeks. Nearly there, or miles to go. Depends on your viewpoint.