Its been a full week since my last post. There hasn’t really been a whole lot happening.
I was able to do a new exercise in this past week that made me really happy. I had been scared to try the eliptical because its so similar to running and I figured it would hurt my hip. I decided to give it a try though after I did try to run on the treadmill for a quarter mile and my hip pain came back. The eliptical felt great! I was getting so tired of the bike, so it was really nice to do something different, especially something that lets me really get my heart rate up and break a good sweat.
I honestly thought I’d have the baby by this point. Everyone warned me that first time moms often go past their due date but because my mom and grandma both delivered so early, I just really wished myself into thinking I’d be the same. It helped me to get through weeks 34-37 when I had to stop running, but now that I’m still very pregnant at almost 39 weeks its made for a very LONG last couple weeks.
At my appointment on Monday I was terribly disapointed when my doctor told me I was still at 1cm dilation. Almost to the point of tears but not quite. Then the next couple days things started to feel like they were happening again and I got real excited. But every day I’d wake up and go to work and go home and go to bed and do it all again the next day.
Thankfully, my co-workers through me a fun surprise shower at work on Thursday and it was really nice and brought a little joy to my week.
I don’t want to just complain, but the last few weeks of labor can be incredibly hard. I’m uncomfortable, as I suspect all mothers to be are at this stage. Everything becomes a challenge. Showering, trying to shave your legs, putting on your underwear, pants and socks! Getting out of bed, out of a chair, out of the car…that bump just gets in the way!
Not to mention that your physical appearance alone is a conversation piece for everyone! Some people really enjoy this part, but I often get uncomforable when a lot of attention is on me so often I just want to turn the conversation to anything else. Luckily, no stranger has ever tried to touch my belly, but it seems ok for everyone to comment on it.
When just about EVERY stranger you come into contact with asks if you’re due soon you feel like you must look like a blimp…until you tell them you’re due date and then they start telling you how “small” you look? And its just hard to know how to take it.
Tim’s having a hard time too. He’s really anxious for me to have the baby and I sometimes feel like I’m disapointing him because I have nothing new to tell him. I know I’m not, obviously I can’t control when I go into labor, but I can’t help but want to see the joy on his face when I tell him its happening, and I can’t miss the disapointment when he asks me how I’m doing and I have nothing exciting to share.
Then there’s the sleep…or lack of it. I feel like I barely sleep at all anymore and I wake up so tired, even on the weekends that I kind of just hurt. My eyes look terrible every day, they hurt and I try to nap when I get the opportunity and I mostly just lay there wishing sleep to come.
But the worst part for me is all these “false hopes” I keep getting. Yesterday for example we had a really nice dinner at my in laws. After dinner I had some pretty bad cramping and backache and started to have my first painful contractions. I got excited and when Tim and I got home we actually started to time them. The second one was 14 minutes apart, then 10 minutes, then 20 minutes…then 40 and then they stopped altogether. I hoped that maybe if I went to sleep I’d wake up in the middle of the night with regular contractions but I just woke up in the night without any contractions.
I know, I know…I’m SO close! Patience has never been something I’m good at, though I do try. I’m thankful that I have carried a healthy baby to term and have had an uncomplicated pregnancy. I’m so thankful for that and remind myself of this fact every time I start to get real down about still being pregnant.
To me its similar to the last part of a marathon. In the early miles you don’t waste a lot of energy. You kind of just go along at an easy pace so as to save all your mental and physical energy for the end when you need it. You reach the halfway point and it feels like a huge milestone and it sort of gives you a mental boost knowing that you’re halfway there. The fatigue is starting to set in but you’re still going strong. You hit mile 16 and its getting harder but you’ve already made it so far and there is now only 10 miles to go. You have to start drawing on those energy reserves at this point but its still managable. You make it to mile 20 and things are really starting to hurt. You’re really drawing on those energy reserves now and have to break down the race into much smaller and more manageable bits…focus on the next mile marker…then the next one. With a 5K to go you’re so close so you start really expending that mental energy and maybe even get a little adrenaline boost. You’re excited, it will all be over very soon.
One mile to go! You’re literally ALMOST there, but you’re not yet either. Everything in your body hurts. All you can think about is how great its going to feel crossing that finish line. You just passed mile marker 25 and you look at your watch again and you’re only at 25.1…time seems to slow down substantially. You’re using up all your remaining reserves and when you think you’re getting so close you realize you’re not even to the half mile marker yet. Where is the fricken finish line? You start to get frustrated. You just ran over 25 miles and your body is struggling so much with less than a mile to go! The last mile of the marathon is always the hardest for me. That’s how I’m feeling right now. I know that I’m so close I can almost hear her crying yet I still feel like it just can’t get here soon enough. And the fact that other people that are due around the same time have gone early and delivered healthy babies…well…that makes it even harder. “No fair! How come they get to have their little one already and I’m still over here uncomfortably waiting?!”
So this is my mental state right now. I will get there and when I do it will all be so worth it. Until then, I will continue to exercise as often as possible because it does seem to be one of the only things that really makes me incredibly happy for the duration and then for a few hours later. And I will remind myself to be thankful for all of my blessings.