Baby: A pumpkin – the biggest one you can find. Quite apt since we’ve just had Halloween, although I’m not really up for a ghoul or vampire baby – just a normal human one would be great.
What I’m cooking: Same again for Grub – she’s still gaining fat, growing fingernails, and processing meconium for that first poo. Yuck.
Main symptom: I actually had some Braxton Hicks this week! I’ve been trying a few labour-inducing exercises (more on that later), and I think some of them are doing something – two nights ago I had pulses of pain across my lower abdomen, like cramps but stronger, about once every 30 minutes or so. They subsided overnight, but it’s good to know my body’s getting ready!
What’s on this week: Maternity leave! Ohhh hell yes! Also, another midwife appointment. Other than waiting for the big event, that’s pretty much it!
Ahhhh maternity leave, how sweet you are. It’s been so lovely to be able to slow down, and actually rest! I’m mid way through the first week of leave, and so far there’s been no sign that Grub wants to make an appearance, which to be honest has been fine with me. It’s been fantastic to be able to move at my own pace, and just start getting everything finalised for bringing her home.
Also, is it just me or does my figure look strange in this week’s progress shot? Something is looking odd with my length or something – both my butt and the underside of my bump look quite different to last week’s picture. Not sure what’s happening there, but according to the midwife this week not much has changed drop-wise – she’s still sitting at 3/5 engaged, although my fundal height has caught up to my week progress – at 36 weeks I was measuring 34.5cm, but this week at 38 I’m bang on 38cm. Looks like she’s got her size figured out! Speaking of the midwife appointment, she told me this week to go ahead and start trying to bring on labour! Basically, if I hit 40 weeks they’ll do a stretch and sweep, then let me run on to 41 weeks, at which point they’ll induce. I really, really don’t want to be induced, so it’s all systems go for Operation: Bring on the Baby! I’m slightly torn though, because it’s my birthday early next week, and I’d really like to keep the day to myself! Whatever happens, happens though. I’ll deal.
In terms of trying to bring on labour, here’s what I’m trying:
- hand expressing – this is the only trick that has any scientific backing, according to Expecting Better, so I’ve been giving this a red-hot go. I’m actually producing some colostrum, which was a bit of a shock!
- Long walks/climbing stairs – this one is not much fun with the belly size I’m currently packing, but I can certainly feel the effect after walking up a big hill or a set of stairs. Hopefully this encourages Grub to get further into my pelvis.
- Fit ball bouncing – same reasons as the walking, but this one I can do in front of the TV, so it’s been a hit over the last few days!
- Raspberry leaf tea – apparently you need to drink a lot of this to have any effect, but it’s worth a shot!
- Spicy food – cooking up a nice curry tonight in the hopes that helps things along, although the heartburn side effect isn’t the greatest…
So far that’s it – there are a couple more options to try out, but I might save them for next week if there’s still no action. I still have a few more things I want to cross off the list before the day hits, so I’m not too worried if there’s no result for a few more days yet.
Otherwise, I’m now onto weekly hospital appointments until either I go into labour, or they decide to induce me, and I’m trying to catch up with friends while I’m home and relaxed, just in case I don’t see them for a couple of weeks!
I’ll let you know if anything happens, we’re on the waiting game now!