Little girl’s clothes and blankets are washed and folded. J. brought the swing in from the shed and it’s cleaned. Car seat’s installed. Steady contractions last night that HURT. E.’s birth was entirely drug-free and the contractions last night weren’t in the realm of that kind of pain, but if those contractions were a 10, last night was a good 4. And then considering that just a few days ago, they were at a 1. Progress? Probably not. But at least I’m ready.
Today, my legs hurt. I’m tired. I’m cranky. I’m back to lightly contracting. I’m packing our hospital bag (which isn’t much, because after going through this a few times now, I know you don’t need everything they say you do.) I was supposed to have a midwife appointment today, but they couldn’t fit me in. Apparently, it’s a good thing I made my next 3 appointments in advance. Tomorrow, I am officially full-term.
When it actually is time, I hope my water breaks. Because with the way this is going, I’m not going to know until it’s too late and I end up with an unplanned homebirth.
I’m at the point of this pregnancy where all I want to do is read birth stories on the babycenter.com boards of those due around my same time and wonder if I’ll be next. I know I won’t. The not-very-pleasant Braxton-Hicks are still here, along with the lower back pain and heartburn and swollen ankles and blah. But nothing out of the ordinary. Nothing that says NOW. Or, even, SOON. More like, this kid is going to stay with me until it’s time for her to enter kindergarten.
As of this Friday, I’ll be considered full-term by everyone’s calculation. For that reason alone, I’m kind of hoping she hangs out until then at least, anyway. I also still need to pick up a few things. As well as launder every baby thing in sight, sterilize everything else, drag the infant car seat out of storage, same with the baby swing, pick up some batteries for the camera, pack a hospital bag… Ugh.
I went in Thursday morning for my midwife appointment (they’ve now turned to weekly, dear god I’m close). Everything was good and normal and moving along like my other’s previous, meaning nothing happens at all until the day I actually go into labor. Since I never took the 3 hour glucose test, I was prescribed a glucose meter to test myself at home for a week until my next appointment (which, being just a day or so into this, I can already tell you now that I’m not diabetic). I’ve been consistantly measuring 2 weeks ahead (which would put me at 38 weeks right now, instead of their 36) and she wants to make sure the baby isn’t going to be too large, so I’m probably getting another ultrasound the next time as well (which is good, in part, because I’d really like to know for sure if she is still a she).
When I tried to point out, however, that the reason I’m measuring 2 weeks ahead, and have ever since they set August 1st as my due date back in April, is because mid-July is a more accurate time frame, her response was “So you think you’re going to go early?”. Um, no. Not early. ON TIME. Why doesn’t anyone ever listen to me?
Thursday afternoon, almost immediately after the appointment, I began to feel contractions. I pushed them aside as false labor contractions, since they’re not uncommon for me these days. By 8 p.m., though, they were coming more frequently with more intensity. And then the lower back pain struck, which really had me thinking that something may be up, since that was one of the first symptoms of A.’s impending arrival. So after the kids were in bed, I loaded contractionmaster.com and began timing the contractions. Every 4-6 minutes apart, lasting about a minute. I almost would have swore that this was the real deal. After a glass of milk, I decided to try going to bed. Obviously, if I was able to sleep, then this wasn’t it. And it wasn’t it. By morning the contractions were gone. No July 4th baby.
Not that I really would have missed much if I had been in the hospital giving birth on July 4th, since our festivities didn’t go as planned. At least it would have been somewhat quiet. We went to our normal fireworks destination, where the explosions literally happen right above our heads, and set-up an hour early. Had dinner in the car. Ate popcorn. Everything was well. Then, it turned night and we got ready outside. With the first big BOOM, E. literally tried to climb my face. He screamed and cried and didn’t stop screaming and crying until it ended. I took him back in the car, because apparently I’m too damn considerate and didn’t want J. to miss much, where he still screamed and cried but at least it wasn’t in public. Because of this, I missed 80% of the show. And then, not even 5 minutes after the fireworks ended, E. fell asleep in my lap. I guess screaming and crying is exhausting work. Until a spare firework was set off 10 minutes later, where E. darted up from slumber and screamed and cried for a minute more. Before going back to sleep. It’s like suffering from Traumatic Firework Syndrome.
At least A. had a good time.
I get up to pee at 3:48 a.m. every night/morning. Like clockwork.
These Braxton-Hicks contractions are killing me. I had a few when I was pregnant with E., none that I remember with A., but this time around they’re daily. Every time I lie down, actually (or sit up, or, well, NOW). Contractions that are progressing things forward are one thing, but pain just for the sake of pain (or possibly my body’s way of amusing itself these last few weeks) is entirely different.
Also, bending over? HA! HAHAHAHAHA! Yeah, it’s really not that funny.
My parents bought baby and I a new boppy pillow, the last of the “big” items needed. Now, all that’s left are some bibs (because where the hell did all of E.’s old stuff go, seriously?), socks, onesies, and maybe a few gowns or sleepers or whatever. But nothing that’s making me freak out. As I told J. last night, this little girl (she better still be a girl, anyway, or else he’ll be wearing a lot of pink and frills) can come any time. I’m ready.
“Do you know what today is?”, I asked A. yesterday morning.
“Ummm…”, he thought.
“It’s Mommy’s birthday!”, I exclaimed.
A. looked around suspiciously, “But, where’s your balloons?”
Good question kid. Where are my balloons?
Instead, I received flowers from J and $50 from my parents. Not to mention the chocolate brownie that I devoured (No cake, but a brownie. Covered in ice cream and whipped cream and chocolate syrup. It was goooood. My stomach, on the other hand, has been very unhappy with me since. I would almost think it was a sign of early labor, except after all that chocolate-ness, a stomach has to remind you that YOU’RE CRAZY and really, you shouldn’t have done that, in some way. Some way that kept me up all night tired and crampy and wincing in pain.)
After leaving my parents’, we stopped at Target, where I proceeded to do some damage on their clearance aisles. $2 for a set of 4 coffee mugs. $3 for a set of 12 glasses. $3 blankets. $2.99 bath towels. I love sales. Also, a few things for baby (also on sale). I think all I need now are a pack of regular white onesies and a new boppy pillow (my old one is kind of disgusting). And some baby laundry detergent to wash everything, which I keep on forgetting.
As we were getting ready to put the kids to bed, A. asked if my birthday was over.
“When you wake up, it won’t be my birthday anymore.”, I told him.
“But, you didn’t get any presents.”, he replied softly.
“Well, I kinda bought my own presents.”
No balloons? No ‘Happy Birthday’ streamers? No presents to unwrap? I could tell the boy thought my birthday sucked. But really, it was a very good day.
Tomorrow is my birthday.
I plan on doing nothing all day (nothing strenuous anyway) except eat a lot of chocolate cake. Which isn’t very strenuous, either, but is rather noteworthy. Because cake = heaven on a plate. Or, better yet, in my mouth. Gestational diabetes be damned.
(By the way, I still haven’t gone in for the 3 hour test and have decided not to. It’s not worth it at this point with only 5 weeks, maximum, left to go (unless, of course, she’s late, but my kids always seem to be right on time, except, of course, I have NO IDEA what “right on time” actually is this go around). My score was only 3 points above what’s considered normal, for one, and finding 3 hours in the morning, since I have to fast beforehand, is basically impossible right now. Finding time to type a decent entry is basically impossible right now also, but that’s another story. I am, however, going to try to watch what I eat better. After tomorrow’s gallon of chocolate cake, that is.)