Saturday, 28 September 2013

35 weeks, and counting {how am I coping?}

Well, today, it is 5 weeks until my due date.

I can't quite believe I am 35 weeks already.

OK, so the pregnancy is 35 weeks, or the baby is 35 weeks.

Me, I'm 35 years.

I decided something today.

It's not fair for a pregnant woman to have to peel potatoes.  Or any other veg for that matter. Ok, so specifically, at the sink.  In that case, washing up has to be eliminated, too.

The weird kind of contortions you have to put your body into, in order to get those jobs done, is simply ridiculous. However, needs must, so a sore back it is, then.

I am already having loads of Braxton Hicks.  I take it all as a good sign, that my body is gearing up for labour in the next few weeks.  Up to 6 or 7 weeks, really.  I am NEVER early, always late.  My babies apparently take longer to "brew" than other people's babies.  I mean, early would be lovely.  Not TOO early, of course.  But, I go by the old saying....

"Blessed is he who expecteth little, for he shall not be disappointed"

Late it is, then.

I started on my Raspberry Leaf tablets today.  As much as there is not a whole lot of research to solidly connect the taking of such to any physical benefits, I think there is a lot of anecdotal evidence that they do something to help with labour.

My last 2 babies, I have taken it regularly and in the right dosage.  Is it coincidental that my 2nd stage for each of those babies has been MASSIVELY shorter.  Or, that the after-pains seem not to be so bad?  I have no idea, but one thing I *DO* know, I am not going to quite taking them, just to see if there is a difference!

The registrar I had the delight, privilege, burden  to meet recently, had not even HEARD of raspberry leaf.  When I was surprised, he did declare "I don't know EVERYTHING", to which I raised my eyebrows and smiled, seeing as I had just heard him sit and lecture me on a subject I had much researched and he didn't like me having knowledge about.

The other thing that 35 weeks heralds?  Tiredness.  And, apparently, the return of some evening nausea, at points.  Yes, we are definitely nearing the end.

What are my tips for surviving the end of pregnancy?

1.  Rest
I make sure that I get to bed a good time, and get a good night's sleep.  Certainly, as good a night's sleep that the discomfort of a bump, and painful joints, can bring. I have to say, since we got a new bed about 2 years ago, pain at night, in pregnancy, is not as bad.  But, it is still there.  Of course, a full night's sleep is also dependant on one's bladder not wakening one, either. I am blessed, in that way - most night's I manage nearly all the way through the night. Mind you, I maintain that disturbed sleep is a bit of a foretaste of the joys of night-time feeds.  Without the gorgeous little baby to soothe, sing to and coo over.

I also make sure that I don't do too much, physically, in the day-time, either.  I simply cannot cope with a hectic life, too much standing up, or generally taking on too many extra responsibilities.  I try and put my feet up for a little while in the afternoon, whilst the children have "room time". The one thing i can't seem to do is have a kip.  If I do that, I feel really grotty, and a bit nauseous, when I waken up. I would rather feel tired, than sick.

2.  Don't do more than you can cope with
I can remember, when I was pregnant with earlier babies, carrying on my hectic lifestyle all the way through pregnancy.  All it would achieve was me being a hormonal wreck, by the end of the pregnancy. Now, I not only do not take on more responsibilities than the norm, but I cut back on unreasonable expectations of MYSELF! I adapt school, so that it is in a format that I can cope with, and doesn't put me under extra strain.  I buy foods that make meal preparation easier, and try and fit in some kind of REALLY easy dinner (ie, take away) about once a week, in the last few weeks. Mentally, just knowing there is ONE night where the pressure is off, is great.

One thing I just refuse to do, in the last few weeks, is make a fancy birthday cake for a child.  I learnt my lesson about that.  When I was 39 weeks pregnant with Abigail, I decided to try and make a fancy cake for Daniel.  Put it this way.... it ended up on the floor, so did I (a screaming, hysterical, mess.... terrifying the children with my melt-down), and my lovely sister-in-law, Anna, stepping in to rescue the day.

Joshua's 12th birthday is 4 days before my due date.  I have told him, he can either have a shop bought cake, or he can make and decorate his own.  Oh, and clear up the mess, too.  Weirdly, it seems he wants to do the second option.  Being somewhat of a creative child, I think the thought of playing with coloured fondant icing quite appeals to him.  Each to their own, but I ain't doin' it.  I put myself under enough pressure, without the end of pregnancy hormones raging.

3.  Train your children to help - BEFORE you are at the end of pregnancy
Now, this one has improved over time.  When your older ones are, well, YOUNGER, they can't do quite as much.  Now?  Every little job they all help with, is a little job off my shoulders. They are such a great help, and it means the household just runs more smoothly and easily, with me needing to do less. I can remember having to leave Robert to vacuum, when he got the time, with earlier pregnancies.  Now, I just get an older child to do it. Things need picking up off the floor?  I holler for a child. No worrying about lugging laundry baskets around the house - the boys do it for me.  It all adds up to making life FAR easier at this later stage.

More children = more help.  (And none of them having to become child labourers to be helpful - each little bit adds up to a lot!)

4. Better eating and exercise habits
Due to the changes I made in what I eat, I definitely feel I have more energy than I used to.  I don't have the effects from the gluten that I used to have - that ALONE makes me feel massively better.  I am still tired, but all the other digestive problems are gone.  Also, I used to have major problems with SPD. I think, because I exercise better between pregnancies, I no longer have any problems with it AT ALL!!!! I could be almost crippled, in some pregnancies, but I had ONE evening of pain, this time, and that was all. Quite amazing!

4.  Casting myself upon the Lord, and resting in HIM
This one is the key.  ABSOLUTELY.  I used to be anxious about so many different little things, by the end of the pregnancy.  Worried about labour.  Worried about the other children.  Anxious about feeling tired and unwell.  How would I cope with everything, whilst I was so tired?  Worried about how the baby would be after they were born - easy going, or hard work?

The only answer to that, is to put Philippians 4:6-7 into practice.

"Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."

Being careful = being anxious.  Literally, full of care.

Do you see what it says?  FOR NOTHING.

There is nothing that I can go through in the next weeks, that should make me anxious.

I have my part to play, though.  I have to pray - to cast myself upon the Lord, and ask Him to help me.  To sustain me.  To make me wise about the choices I make.

And, do you see the answer?  A peace, beyond my understanding.  A peace, that is beyond any other peace. It keeps my heart, and MY MIND, thorough Christ Jesus.  Don't skip over the "mind" part, because it's our thoughts that can send us into the most anxious tailspin.  We need to have our mind resting on the Lord, and trusting in Him.  THAT is the place I need to be right now.  Trusting the Lord, moment by moment.

When I do that, all I feel is excitement about the days that lie ahead.  Yes, I will have tired days.  Yes, I will have emotional, hormonal days.  But, God has a perfect time for this little one to arrive, in His perfect way. My job is to rest in Him, and wait patiently. Not to worry, not to fear. Not to get so bound up with the little problems of a moment, that I forget the bigger picture - of God, in control of ALL things.

I will leave you with one of my favourite tracks from my Scripture Lullabies albums, based on those verses.  I listen to these in labour - more of that in another post....

And, I will try and get a pregnancy update picture, as soon as possible. For those of you who like these things....


  1. You *sing* through the night? Seriously?? .... Oh , you are much better than I ever was :P

    Good for you for learning your limitations from other pregnancies ... you will feel all the better for being sensible with rest etc.

    And 35 weeks .... ooooh, exciting!

  2. I can't believe your so far along already--I was just wondering how you were doing! My last pregnancy I was almost in disbelief when I was so close to the end...all of the sudden I was thinking, "I'm about to have a baby?!" LOL

    We seem to grow our babies the same...I feel your pain (with the going "overdue"). ;) For the last 2, I took EPO & the 1st time it seemed to help me soften, but the last time nothing. She was 2 wks over. Baby will come when it's time is what I've learned. Now let's see if I can remember that if/when the end of pregnancy comes again! :D

    Looking forward to hearing your news when the time comes!
    Shea Ropp

  3. Have you ever heard of 5W? You take it the last 5 weeks of your pregnancy. I have taken it with great success with my 2 and hope to take it with this one as well. My mom has taken it for most of her 11 pregnancy's, the ones she never took it for she said she really noticed the difference. Another thing that I take the last 5 weeks is evening primrose and Vit. C with bioflavonoids. Evening primrose is good because ti releases prostagladins into your system which helps with contractions and Vit. C is good to help you heal after and limit tearing.
    I get 5W from, but don't know if it's available by you. The product comes from Nature's Sunshine.

    Hope everything may go well for you.

  4. Glad you are doing well, tried texting , did you get?