41 Weeks

How far along: 41 weeks, completed 10/17/2012. This Friday I have a nonstress test at 1:30. Basically, they will listen to Alice’s heartbeat for about half an hour and see how she’s doing in there. If there’s any reason for concern, I’ll be induced that same day (!). In which case, I’ll phone up my darlin’ husband, who will bring the hospital bag and meet me there for showtime. On the other hand, if everything looks fine, I go back on Monday for an ultrasound and they’ll check the level of my amniotic fluid. The absolute last possible day I will be pregnant is Wednesday the 24th, and if things haven’t happened naturally by that point, I’ll be induced at 8pm.

Please pray, friends. I want Alice to come out naturally. I have no desire to take pitocin. I’m  actively giving up my worries when they hit my heart . . . and it takes some emotional work.

Weight gain: Not sure . . . a scale in a bathroom I was recently in (since we don’t have a scale at home) said 151, but there’s no way I’ve lost 3 lbs in the past week. So who knows.

Clothes: I’m ready to be done working around this belly and get back into my regular clothes. I wake up in the morning and I think “oh man . . . another maternity tank day.” I’m basically down to either this one pair of jeans, or leggings with a long top. Not exactly my idea of fun variety.

Purchases: Nothing new.

Body: In the mornings during the past week I’ve been feeling pretty energetic and moving about comfortably, but as the days progress into the evening, I’ve been getting more uncomfortable. Getting up from the couch is considerably more difficult at night, for example. Maybe because after eating and drinking all day, my stomach expands and makes everything else feel more cramped?

And yesterday I woke up feeling uncomfortable from the get go (possibly because during the night it felt like Alice was trying to drill her way out through my pelvic floor–ouch). I went to work anyway, but didn’t stick around long. Everything was under control at the office (ah, bliss), so I decided to work from my lovely old Blackberry and head home to some raspberry leaf tea.

I’ve been getting contractions that feel slightly painful at least a few times per evening. One night, there was a nice 10-minute pattern for about an hour, but then they went away. As soon as I feel a contraction that feels like a strong menstrual cramp and has a little edge of back pain to it, I get excited and say a little prayer that they will continue. But until now, they haven’t turned into anything lasting or super intense. We’re trying all the methods of natural induction on the list: spicy foods . . . pineapple . . . pressure points on the ankle and arms . . . walking . . . and other methods. Heh heh.

Oh, and lotsa prayer.

Anyway, it’s just not computing that my body will ever decide to start this process. I feel like there’s a motherboard that needs some buttons to be pushed, but I’m not sure how to access those buttons. Will my body just start labor at some point? I have trouble trusting that it will.

And as for belly-disappearing, it’s actually still kind of successful, though in the picture below it doesn’t look it since I had just stuffed myself with taco salad, oatmeal bread, fruit salad, and scones. Scones galore.

Sleep: As awesome-sauce as usual, with the exception of Alice’s drilling expedition Monday night around 3am.

Best moment(s) of the week: I really loved our relaxing Saturday. I had a nice, peaceful devotional with coffee and cookies in the morning . . . we meal-planned and grocery shopped . . . we hung out and talked . . . I read on the couch while drinking tea and watching the rain . . . and then we made coq au vin (a huge batch so that we could freeze the leftovers) and watched a documentary (“Waiting for Superman”) in bed. Perfection!

Movement: She’s still twisting and stretching around, and it’s definitely more uncomfortable than ever before. She’s got some strength in those little legs! And the tendon-twanging feeling from last week–it’s the worst. I’m not a banjo, little girl! But if you come out today I’ll give you a banjo . . . (yes, I’m not beyond bribing at this point).

Food cravings/aversions: Nothing in particular to report here, but it’s been painful to watch my darling husband eat our favorite kind of ice cream (Dulce de Leche) and not partake. When Alice is about 3 weeks old, my self-imposed ban on dairy will be lifted and there will be much rejoicing. My first mission will be to eat a bowl of berries smothered in heavy whipping cream.

Symptoms: Contractions (more in the evening than during the day), but without the intensity and pattern that would indicate labor is happening.

Emotions: I’ve been pretty emotional about work in the past week. Some things have come up (beyond anyone’s control) that have meant I need to be here. I don’t want to go into detail, but late last week I cried at work for probably the 3rd time in 3 years, and was completely overwhelmed by stress. I cried on the bus as I went to the office . . . I cried in the bathroom after getting here . . . I cried at my desk . . . and then I cried in front of my boss. Yikes. Thankfully after some thinking, planning and decision-making followed by improvement in some matters beyond my control, things are (I think) in place again so that I can leave unencumbered by the feeling that things may fall apart. They won’t!

There is now a back-up plan for the back-up plan, type of thing.

All in all, the stress at work was the only downer in my week until I got some serious blues Monday evening. Totally out of the blue, and for no reason that I could even put my finger on. I just didn’t feel like smiling, or laughing, or doing really anything at all. So with my husband’s encouragement, as soon as we had finished dinner I went to bed and watched 2 episodes of “Clean House.” Then my baby joined me (the husband, not the Alice) and read me Sherlock Holmes until I fell asleep. Will you think me superficial if I say this was pretty much bliss? Because it was.

Hopes and dreams: Every day I hope that it will be The Day, but I’m trying not to obsess and steal the enjoyment out of the present.

What I miss: Wearing normal clothes.

What I’m looking forward to: Holding my baby girl for the first time. It’s funny, because though it’s closer than ever, it also feels further away than ever before.

Husband update: He’s ready for her to be born! Thankfully he’s also really into his work right now, writing chapter 1 of his dissertation with research he’s been doing all summer. So going to work every day is exciting for him, which I think helps take his mind off the waiting game.

I hope you’re all having great weeks! I continue to covet all of your prayers for peace, strength, patience, and pretty much all the blessings of God on us and on the timing of this. Love you all!

26 thoughts on “41 Weeks

  1. Jenny @ Words On Wendhurst

    It’s definitely possible that you lost weight, it’s pretty common in those last few weeks. I’ve even heard it’s a sign that labor is imminent. Which it obviously is, I mean, you’re 41 weeks, but maybe that’s still encouraging? 🙂 Also, your dissapearing belly trick boggles my mind. Where does Alice go? It keeps me up at night. 🙂 I’m praying for you!

  2. Rebekah

    my little boy was 13 days late (which is weird because his big sister was 6 days early) and i had to be induced. it took 12ish hours of the cervical pill before things got going BUT i never had to be on pitocin AND i was able to have my water birth! so it is possible. on the other hand, my first birth was nothing like i planned or wanted, complete with hours of pitocin and an epidural, but it was still beautiful because it brought me my daughter and made me a mama!

    basically, you’ll be fine whatever happens, and there is grace for it all. 🙂 best wishes!

  3. Amy W

    You’re looking really well and happy! : ) Must be a bit frustrating waiting around, but really hope it all happens very soon and it all goes well! Looking forward to hearing all about baby Alice when she finally comes x

  4. Jesse

    I haven’t commented in a while, but I’ve really enjoyed your weekly pregnancy posts, and I have a feeling this will be your last one! Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us.

    That belly disappearing act is pretty awesome, haha. Definitely trust your body, it knows what to do. Praying for a safe and natural delivery for you, and soon! Alice is just so happy and comfy in there, she’s decided to take her sweet time :o).

    God bless!

    1. Jenna Post author

      Thanks Jesse! I’m trying to let go, let my mind relax, and leave it up to God and this body he’s designed to do this very thing.

  5. Megan

    Oh Jenna, the waiting game is so hard. I’ll continue to pray for you to have peace and be distracted during this time. I think watching a lot of movies and reading this week is a really good idea. Alice might have a totally different temperament so this may not apply, but I STILL find it very difficult to read or watch movies with Kyle around… constantly getting interrupted.

    You know, I had a crazy dream last night. I dreamt that I looked at the calendar and suddenly realized that I was a few days beyond 40 weeks and I didn’t even know it, since I had lost count of how far along I was. And I was saying, “but we haven’t even thought about names yet” and “I haven’t felt this baby move yet, how can that be, maybe the baby has some of kind of disability.” When I woke up, I thought “that was super weird” and then I remembered, “oh yeah, I’m only 14 weeks, that’s why I haven’t felt the baby move yet. Ok good we still have time to think about names.” It was probably cause I read your post on 40 weeks just a couple days ago and wondering if I’ll go early or late this time 🙂

    1. Jenna Post author

      Wow, I can’t believe you’re already 14 weeks . . . I’m so excited for you guys! Another wonderful baby!!

  6. Erica

    “But if you come out today I’ll give you a banjo . . . ” And so will Auntie Erica, Alice! ANd any other tiny musical instrument your little heart desires! Come on out and delve into the love that’s waiting!

    Kiddo, I am praying every time I think of you. May God bless you with a beautiful, safe, natural birth with “zero guns”. Hang in there, babycakes. I love you!

    1. Jenna Post author

      Thanks babes. I am so comforted knowing I have the prayers of God’s people–and especially yours–behind me.

  7. Suzie

    You’re in my prayers also Jenna, but I too feel this is your last pregnancy post (at least with Alice). I believe they just come at there own time and when God decides it’s time. My son was late, my grandson was just late but, they both came naturally and with no problems. I think that is what will happen will you also. xoxo

  8. Kate

    Jenna – lots of prayers for you and Alice. Both my babies were exactly 10 days late. I knew I ovulated late so I wasn’t worried. When I was growing up it seemed women were always walking around the neighborhood trying to induce late babies! Alice is growing those lungs big and strong!

  9. Julie M.

    I have mixed feelings about this post. I was excited to hear from you but I was was hoping it was to meet little Alice for the first time! Stay strong, it will happen soon and I for one can’t wait to hear all about it! (hug) 🙂

  10. jen

    I’m praying with you that you will go naturally! Looking forward to seeing a sweet baby face on your blog one of these days soon…

  11. Terri

    Ohhhhh, Jenna! I had forgotten all about the baby “twang” thing. One of my babies used to do that to me! Hurt like crazy, too.

    I can’t believe you can still mostly do the disappearing baby act; so funny. And here’s a funny story for you: When I was pregnant with my first baby, we lived on the bottom floor of our apartment building. The people who lived two floors up from us had a toddler who liked to flush large things down the toilet. One night the toddler flushed something and it caused a huge plumbing clog in our apartment…because we were on the bottom floor. I was about 5 days out from my due date and we had a dysfunctional bathroom for the entire night. For the rest of the night I had to use a 5 quart empty ice cream pail for a toilet. 3:00 in the morning, 9 months pregnant, and I’m in a squatting position over a stupid ice cream pail cussing at the family three floors up. Good times.

  12. Veronica

    You are in my prayers Miss J! I love that you’re anticipating this so eagerly but I’m sure by now, you’re kinda over the whole pregnancy thing. 🙂 Hang in there–no not you Alice, we want you out! I’m talkin to your momma! 😉

  13. Joanne

    !!! Girl I’m crossing my fingers that that baby just decides to come out before Friday. End of story. Doesn’t she know how much we all want to meet her out here!!

  14. Anita

    I checked your post this morning hoping I’d get to meet sweet Alice. Hang in there!!!! and believe me, EVEN if the birth doesn’t happen as you’ve hoped and planned, the end result is the wonderful adventure of Alice and learning to be a family and mom. And it overrides everything else. Praying….

  15. Kimby

    Jenna, I’m replying to this late (just got back) but I’m hoping Miss Alice has made her way into the world by the time you get this. (And just in time to button up your coat… it’s getting chilly up north!) Sending hugs, smiles, & prayers. xo

  16. Carrie

    Oh, you look so beautiful!! Praying for peace and grace and love and all the goodness of the Spirit to remove all anxiety! You are so loved, and Alice will be so loved, so everything will be alright. Looking forward to seeing the sweet thing, and definitely praying she comes before Wednesday. (I’m still praying for tomorrow, as a birthday present pour moi.) : )

  17. Circe

    Yikes! 41 weeks. You must have the patience of a saint. I would be climbing the wall. You look amazing! and I’m sure that soon you will have your little girl, and I will pray for her to come to you really soon. Congrats again, I can’t wait to see her.

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