Girl, I honestly don’t think you have much moving space left in there. Just stay comfortable as much as you can, okay?
I can’t feel a single kick, a squirm, or a shift from you without it affecting another part of my body. Whether it be my bladder, my rib cage, or my sides(it hurts when I laugh now because your back presses up against my side and makes it cramp), I truly feel like you and I are one.
I wonder if you’ll still remember my warmth, my cradle, my voice, my laugh…when I’m holding you in my arms?
xoxo Mama(This was actually taken at 35 weeks when we went on our family babymoon Up North and I had just discovered “the shelf.” Ellie doesn’t like to be held much so this was a cool discovery for me.)
I wouldn’t quite yet declare “I’m ready for this pregnancy to be over with!” but the physical discomfort is starting to wear on me. When I walk, when I sit, when I get up from a chair, when I lay down, when I roll over, when I get out of bed, when I go to the bathroom, when I sneeze, when I blow my nose, when I bend over, when I lean back, when I eat, when I don’t eat, every. single. thing. I do makes me aware of how very pregnant I am. I try to keep things in perspective and remind myself that as much as things may be uncomfortable now, pretty soon it is only going to be replaced by a different set of challenges. But still, catch me on an EMO day combined with the physical discomfort and you’ve got yourself a hot mess.
Speaking of hot mess, I was in one of my best friend’s wedding this past weekend. Not as a guest, but in it. I wouldn’t recommend being in one of your best friend’s wedding when you’re just shy of being 39 weeks pregnant. I learned first-hand how truly your emotions and body are “one.” I paced myself, I ate enough protein to keep my energy level up, I was well hydrated, I made sure I wasn’t on my feet for too long, etc…I did everything I could to physically take care of myself. What I didn’t realize was just how much your mental state is connected with your physical being. I started to feel some serious contractions when I was waiting my turn to give my toast during the rehearsal dinner. At first it was just a back cramp. Then it moved to my upper back. Then my chest. Then it all started coming in waves every couple minutes. It was everywhere but my belly so I knew they weren’t labor contractions. But still. I was at such an emotionally heightened state overwhelmed with joy and love for her and her husband to be that when I managed to actually get up from my seat, stand in front of them, look them in the eyes and open my mouth, not a single word came out but a hot mess of flooding tears. I’m pretty sure they got my point though and the contractions went away afterwards!
This hot mess-ness and contractions happened a couple more times during the weekend. If anything, it reinforced to me the importance of not only keeping up my physical health, but also my mental health as well.
Which is why I’m so glad that I decided to take the time to just be before Bunnee’s arrival. I decided to start my maternity leave from work almost two weeks before her due date. This was unthinkable when I was pregnant with Ellie. I was so anxious of what was in store for me, I wanted to save all the time I had to be with Ellie after she was born, rather than sitting at home just waiting anxiously. What was so different with this pregnancy is that I had such a difficult time allowing myself to focus on my pregnancy and feeling empowered by it when I was distracted with work and other obligations. I was on such an unnecessary emotional see-saw that it was wearing me out.
Now that I’m on my leave, having been able to sleep in(as much as my bladder and toddler would allow me to), nap when I’m tired, cook from scratch with vegetables from our garden, sit on the sofa oblivious to my “agenda” for the following day, and truly enjoy and BE in Matt and Ellie’s company, I am feeling SO at peace and content. I realize that this cuts short the time I have with Bunnee before I return to work, but I wouldn’t trade this time for anything. I am connected with myself, with Matt, and most importantly, truly enjoying my “only child’s” company while I can.
I have no expectations for labor, and feel ready as I can be. With Ellie, things like getting her room ready, or putting the furniture together, or washing all her clothes, or deep cleaning the entire house seemed to be most important.Â I didn’t know what to expect emotionally, so these things were good distractions. But now? We do have our birth center bag packed. Bunnee’s home coming outfit is washed and packed. An infant car seat is installed in the car. And I do have a plan in place this time around to help myself cope better with the post partum hormones. But other than that, I have no other plans than to keep Bunnee close to me. She’ll be sleeping with me, eating with(from) me, she’ll be attached to me. And that’s all that she’s going to need for awhile.
And in the meantime, I’m just taking things day by day, listening to my body and making sure I’m just happy.
And I am.