40 weeks: A big week {pregnancy update}

{Ouch}

It’s Monday night, less than 48 hours until the baby’s official duedate.  I’m not in labor – not to the best of my knowledge – but things are certainly picking up in there.  Right in line with my personal pattern, Braxton Hicks contractions are slowly morphing into false/prodromal labor.  They’re becoming more and more consistent, and progressively stronger.  I’ve had nothing convincing yet, but every few hours I get a couple of contractions that are strong enough to make me sit up and take notice.  Then they slip into the background again, noticeable but not imposing.  If things happen the way they usually do, late one night I’ll realize that I can’t sleep and I was having strong, consistent contractions all evening.  Then there will be a baby sometime in the morning hours, with a lot of pain in between.

OK, maybe I’m ready to think about labor now.  Maybe.

Or at least this weekend.  Perry and the older girls are hard at work painting and texturing our new home, and he is really hoping that this little guy will stay put until we move in later this week.  My usual comeback when people admonish me to not overdo it in the final days of pregnancy is, “What’s the worst that will happen? I’ll go into labor?”  Well, this week that is not what some of us want.  I’m home with the little ones packing boxes, but I am on light duty.  This is not just for my own good and comfort, but to maintain plausible deniability if I do go into labor and ruin the schedule.  ;)

{OUCH.  There’s my 2 in a row.  The next few hours should be nothing, right?}

I have a related thought about finding out the gender of this baby, and would love to know if you agree.  I have always gotten very anxious to go into labor about 2 weeks before it actually happens, but I don’t quite feel the same this time.  I keep wondering if it could be because I’m not so eager to meet this guy.

Wait – that didn’t quite come out right.

I mean I feel like I have already met him.  I know he’s a boy, and I’ve seen his sweet face already.  Somehow that makes me feel like I know him already.  I’m eager to hold him, but there is no huge surprise at the end of this labor, so I don’t quite feel the same consuming anticipation.  I know who I’ve been patting and talking to for the last 4 months.  I know the little man who has been kicking my ribs and punching my bladder.  I’m just waiting to hold him, not to meet him.

Do you sometimes find out your baby’s gender ahead of time, and sometimes not?  Do you feel any different as the time for labor gets close?

Belly pic:

It’s late and dark.  I’ll add a pic on Tuesday morning – unless I wake up in labor during the night.  Well, in that case I hope we’ll be posting pics by morning anyway…

Update:
The photo below was taken on the baby’s official duedate, October 17.
I call this, “The Great Pumpkin.”
image

Baby at 40 weeks:

He’s still getting bigger, and I so am I.  Did you place your bet on just how big?
Your turn:
How are you and your little one this week?  What’s new?
{Ouch}
Previous pregnancy updates:

Comments

  1. After 4 inductions, I didn’t know what my normal go-into-labor pattern would look like. Which might partially explain why pregnancy #5 ended with an unintended home birth late Sunday night. One of the most exciting and fun experiences of my life! Everything turned out great and we are home now with our 4 day old baby #5. :)
    You can read his birth story here: http://www.buffaloesandbutterflywings.blogspot.com/2012/10/daniels-birth-story.html

    • Amy, what a great story and you did a wonderful job telling it!!! Thanks for sharing. Do you have other birth stories posted on your blog?

  2. I guess I missed the connection of a new house. Which one wasn’t under contract that you purchased? Sending blessings your way on the birth of your son.

  3. My bet is 7lbs. 7oz.

    You are a mama full of love. I must say I admire your flexibility in how well you are handling all of the different things on your “plate”.

    No matter how much experience one has with = = labor; there can never be enough encouragement. You CAN do this. May the Lord bless you with specific evidences of His tender love for you as you get ever closer to ……..the birth story!!!! You CAN do this.

    cheering you on!
    with prayers,
    Sandy

  4. So excited for you!
    I’m 31 weeks and anxiously waiting for the green light. I could actually have a Christmas baby. WILD!
    This is #7 and we’ve found out with each one. I’m just impatient. :) Love me a good ultrasound. Will be thinking about you in the coming days/weeks.

  5. Kim you are so close!! So excited for you, you are looking amazing as always! About the anticipation thing, I had seven kiddos and found out every time except once, and I can see what you mean but I don’t remember feeling less anxious to meet my babe, than I did when I didn’t know (did that make sense?) I wonder if it has more to do with your current circumstances and wanting to hold out a bit longer to get the needed things done? :) Can’t wait to see pics of your new little guy! Bless you in these final days!

  6. I say 8 pounds 3 ounces. I tried clicking on place your bet link but it didn’t work.
    I think your baby belly is beautiful! I wish things had gone differently for us , but we are very blessed with the ones we have.

    Praying for you and your family, Donna

  7. We found out with number 2, out of 4. Clearly, we love the fun of a surprise, but honestly I didn’t think it changed how I felt about labor at all. I Felt like I “knew” all ofthem already anyway. Even though we only found outwith #2 Ive never really felt surprised by the gender…because forwhatever reason the last few weeks I have always been convinced (correctly) of the gender. But I don’t ever remember feeling like learning thengender or already knowing factored into the anticipation or excitement I felt at all. I think the real excitement for me was wondering if they would be like who they seemed to be to me in utero…and of course who would they look like!?!? Our first is a red head…and after that it has always been wildly fun to speculate on just how our genetic mish mash will play out..:) My babies have all spontaneously arrived between 2 and 3 weeks early….so at this point I am not sure if 37 weeks is just the point I go crazy Bc I know I am full term or because I really KNOW laborious is imminent.

  8. We have never found out the gender. With the first two, because we didn’t want to spend money on an unnecessary ultrasound, and with this one even though we had ultrasounds, they aren’t ever really allowed to tell you so we had no problem not asking again. Plus we just like a surprise.

    Even though I just had number 3, I also have seemed to follow the long drawn out labor pattern of Braxton Hicks, the lots of early labor contractions, and then finally a relatively short active labor with my last two. Totally thankful for the short active labor part. I recently posted my really long birth story about giving birth to number 3 in China, which was my first hospital birth.

    http://www.thedoityourselfmom.com/2012/10/birth-story-of-alexander-john.html

    So far I’ve had two births in a beautiful birth center and one hospital birth, but we’d love to have home births someday if that were aver made a possibility. I hope you have (or perhaps even had) a beautiful birth experience with this little blessing.

  9. tap tap…umm, hello, Kim? No picture update. Did you go into labor? hello? anyone there?

    • Sorry. I didn’t sleep well, procrastinated most of the day, then had to leave quickly on some unexpected errands.
      Anyway, it will be fun to take pics right on the duedate!

      • I imagine you have a lot of your mind. All is forgiven. :o) Are you planning a water birth again? I’m dying to know part 18 of the house story! We have our own craziness going on here with our own house story. John officially got laid off last night, last day is 10/22, my mom is living with while going thru chemo, my brother also moved in, John has double knee replacement surgery next Friday, then he’s applying for work in northern VA, we’ll put the house on the market after we pack it some, then we’ll figure out how we’re going to live in VA (rent/own), and all that while schooling six and wearing false lashes and not sweating a drop. Ok, ok, that last part about lashes and sweating was a lie. :o) So, can I come stay with you for a few days? I need a mini vacation. :o) JUST KIDDING!!! No seriously, can I?

  10. Jolyvette says:

    Two days shy of 39 weeks here with our third! I spent two weeks terrified of labor, but have come to a peaceful place for now. Have the birth pool, everything is ready…now we wait :) Enjoying the posts!

  11. 39 weeks and desperate for baby to hurry up and get out here! My daughter was induced slightly preemie for medical reasons, 37w 1d, so I’ve never experienced this awful ‘end of labor’ period. It’s horrid!

    I found out with her, and I couldn’t find out with this one (It crossed it’s legs at BOTH ultrasounds!). I agree that it feels different, I was waiting to hold my daughter, who I had been bonding with for months, but I’m still waiting to meet this baby, I feel like I don’t know anything about it. It’s pretty much exactly what you described.

    Thing is, I’m the opposite of you. I HATE this feeling, just talking about it is making me cry again. I feel like I’ve missed so much this time, I haven’t been able to really talk to the baby because I don’t even know what it’s name is. I hate calling it ‘it’. I can’t unpack the clothes and get things ready for it, everything is waiting in boxes and on lists to be bought after it arrives. It’s been a very hard month, just like the last month with my first, but with my first I could talk to baby and know why I was doing this, this time it almost feels unreal, there’s no connection, I just want the baby out. I know hormones will kick in when I give birth and I’ll be happy to see the baby and everything will change when it’s actually here, but right now, I feel nothing about the baby inside me, I don’t know who it is, I don’t have anything out and ready for it, I didn’t get to spend the time packing the wardrobe or pulling out the toys or buying any special presents because I hate unisex items. I wanted to buy baby a going home outfit but I can’t even do that because everything suited to both genders is ugly.

    I’m sure I’ll get plenty of judgment for saying this, and half of it is hormone fueled, but it’s how I’m feeling at the moment. My husband didn’t want to know the gender for any kids, so this was, I guess, the experiment. I don’t think I can do this again, I’m scared when the baby comes out that I’ll feel like I don’t know it, like there wont be a bond or something, unlike my first where I was saying hello to a little person I’d been talking to and preparing for for months. My daughter felt like part of our family at 6 months pregnancy, this baby still doesn’t feel like part of our family, I just hope it will when it’s here.

    Isn’t it funny how we can experience the same difference, but have completely different reactions to it.

    • I never found out the gender of any of my 4 babies. (one is due in 2 months!) I have never felt a deep bond before birth with any of them, but did/do enjoy kicks and movements. With my 3rd I was depressed through almost all of my pregnancy and did not at any point look forward to meeting the baby growing inside. With the others I started to get excited at some point. It sounds terrible, I know, but I refused to let myself feel guilty. I KNEW from my experience with my other two that I would bond immediately after birth…which I did and just as much as with my other two. I actually got to catch her! She is a real sweetie and I love her dearly! She is two now and looking forward to the new baby coming.
      Don’t beat yourself up about feelings you can’t make happen. Enjoy your daughter and maybe buy an outfit for boy and girl, then you can take back or save the other outfit for a baby shower.

  12. I’m 34 weeks tomorrow, but my body is already trying to serve an eviction notice. I’m 1.5 cm dilated, 50% effaced. Trying to hold on.2 more weeks so we can avoid the NICU

  13. Ooh I’m getting excited now. I haven’t been reading your blog for that long so I believe this will be the first baby that I have read about from the start of your pregnancy. I hope that everything goes well and your little man stays in until you move house as I would imagine that would be slightly less hassle. Good luck and can’t wait to find out what house you bought! :)

  14. Heather Wawa says:

    Which house did you buy??????

  15. I found out the gender ahead of time with all 3 of mine. With my last one though (2 weeks ago!) 2 ultrasounds predicted a boy and we got the surprise of our lives when SHE was born! My sister didn’t find out with her first and found out with her second who was supposed to be a girl, but turned out to be a boy! After that she said she wouldn’t bother to find out again.

  16. 39 weeks today, and getting soooooooo impatient to have this baby! We found out this time, but I don’t think that’s affected my thoughts on labor as much as this being my second. With my first, I was terrified, not of the labor, but of the responsibility of taking care of the baby. This time, I feel a more confident in my abilities, and can hardly wait.

  17. We never found out the gender of any of our 10. I never wanted to know. One of the things my husband would tell me when the going got tough was, “Just a few more minutes and we’ll know who this little one is!” That helped me to get through the tough parts of labor like nothing else could. I loved that introduction to our mystery baby when my body and mind felt relief to have this new little one out of the womb and in our arms. If God surprised us with another, I would still not want to know ahead of the labor and delivery. And, that’s the way God created birth and the meeting of our new little ones in the first place!

  18. We found out with all of ours, so I don’t the anticipation of finding out the gender at birth. I do know that by knowing, our little ones just seemed to slip right in to the family as if they were always there. The arrival was still incredibly special, but well, there was just a familiar aspect to it all, as if they just belonged. It’s sort of hard to explain.

  19. I know exactly how you feel! I have had 3 “find-outs” and this pregnancy with our 6th child will be our third surprise.

    For me, I’ve noticed that I’m much more willing to go into a natural labor and birth process (without meds) KNOWING that I finally get to find out who has been in my womb all these months. The anticipation of that has made labor and delivery “more bearable,” if that makes any sense.

    My last pregnancy we found out that we were having a boy and I remember being in the HARDEST part of labor and looking at the wall where the nurses had written his name on a small whiteboard. I remember thinking ” All this pain, and I don’t even get a surprise at the end?? No thanks!”

    And I got my first epidural. :)

  20. Our 7th child was born last Monday. He was 10lbs 2oz, 2 lbs more than our next largest baby-a big shock! We had 3 girls and 3 boys before he joined us. I had an ultra-sound at 21 wks as I was measuring 28cm and the midwife was sure I was having twins and she won’t deliver them at home. My mother and sister happened to be along to my appt. as we were in town to watch my sister run a half marathon. I told the tech we didn’t want to know the gender. When she was in the telling area she told us to close our eyes. My mom didn’t. It didn’t bother me that she knew-especially when she paid for the ultra-sound :) The tech gave me a sealed envelope with the gender inside and a DVD of the session in case my husband and I wanted to know. I kept it in my bedside table unopened until a couple days ago, as now it is a moot point!

    I am glad I didn’t find out, although I was pretty sure he was a boy. So sure, in fact, that I told my sister I would eat the placenta if I was wrong. Glad I was right as I’m not usually real hungry after giving birth :)

  21. kimberlyt says:

    I’m currently 31wks with my 5th. we found out the gender with the first 2 but not the last 3 (2 wouldnt show us). I love not knowing, it does add a little more excitement to the birth i think. Hope you get to meet that little boy soon. and i agree with others, anxiously awaiting the continuation of your house hunting story.

  22. Out of seven kiddos, we found out with only one, our third. I have to say I didn’t like knowing. Come labor day I had those same thoughts….I already know who you are! We’ve opted to not find out anymore. My hubby wants to know each time, but I tell him that I’m the one going through the labor, and I need that suprise at the end :-)

    blessings,
    Kerri

    • Funny similarities….we also have 7 but we found out with all EXCEPT one, and that was our 2nd!
      Love to hear other families’ stories!

  23. 18 weeks here and have been having a bit of trouble lately, spotting and such. This is pregnancy no. 4 in a matter of 6 years, and the Doctor said my body is tired. (Already? It has only been 4 babies!) I want to find out what the baby is, but hubby does not. We have three daughters and he is aching for a boy, I think his goal in waiting for baby to arrive and announce its own gender, is that he will love the baby no matter what, once he meets the baby, gender won’t be as big of a deal. Good plan. But I want to know! We have ALL girl things! (including a pink carseat!) So, what if this baby comes and nobody has given us boy stuff? Uh Oh.
    So my husband gave me permission to find out, on the charge that I don’t tell him! I am allowed to tell friends and family, if I like, and I am hoping that it is a boy, because all it takes is one unthinking person walking up and handing me a girly dress to blow it.
    So at this point I am debating… Should I opt not to find out, to make things easier on hubby? Or should I find out and *HOPE* I can keep the secret for 4-5 months. Hmmmm.

    • Hi Liz,
      I had 3 kids in 4 years, besides having one 17 years before the last #6. Please take it very easy if you’re spotting. I had a dr. that did not fully explain to me what placenta previa was, and when I started spotting heavily and went to the hospital on a Saturday (dr. was closed)–they told me I should not stand for more than 20 minutes at a time. The midwife/dr. had told me I could do my regular activities—which if I had continued, I would have lost the baby.

      I went on to deliver a beautiful baby boy several months later, but I do think it was a blessing that I had gone to the hospital and that nurse had told me to not stand more than 20 mins at a time!! So, if you’re spotting, try to rest with your feet up. I know that sounds tough—I was homeschooling 3 children and had a toddler during my first bedrest. Then, with #6 I was careful because of a torn placenta, and until it grew back and healed, I was on “bedrest” with 4 little ones. We did most of our schooling in my bedroom, on my bed. The children adapted well and it really did not seem to bother them that we couldn’t go places during the week days. They also learned a lot about helping out with simple housework, and our house kept functioning steadily.

      About seeing the gender…well, both my hubby and I were always excited to find out with the ultrasound. And, it didn’t seem to spoil any part of the labor….in fact, I always had a name picked out by that time (big challenge in our family–even the grandparents and aunts and uncles get involved!), and I couldn’t wait to hold that little person. During labor, sometimes it helped to visualize that little girl or that little boy….but, I think everyone is different. I don’t think I could keep the secret from my husband. :)

    • I think it would be hard having one half of the marriage know the sex when the other doesn’t. Your son’s not going to remember if he spends a couple weeks in a pink carseat. ;) It’s been less than a hundred years since society decided that blue=boy and pink=girl. Before that, blue was associated with the Virgin Mary and girls. Pink, red’s cousin, was considered a stronger color and more appropriate for boys. Even dresses were unisex on small children. You might not want to go that far, :) but people actually used to tell my mother what cute baby boy she had when I was a baby, and again with my sister, even when we were in frilly pink dresses. I guess because we were bald? I don’t get it….

  24. Maybe I am just really impatient, but it doesn’t matter whether I know my baby’s gender or not…I still get antsy at about 37 weeks. We didn’t find out with our first (though we have with the other three and the little guy I am carrying now) and I was fine and dandy with letting labor come whenever, but was surprised when I went into labor two weeks before my due date. With the next three, labor thoughts have consumed me earlier and earlier. I guess having that one early arrival prepared me for more. When number 3 still wasn’t here when it was only 3 days till his due date, I thought I woud die! My blood pressure was rising from anxiety and everything. Thankfully #4 came a week and a half early. Our fifth is due 2/2 and I’m sure soon after Christmas labor excitement will set in. I would like to wait to find out whether we are having a boy or girl each time, but my husband insists on knowing ahead of time. We kinda have a cool pattern going and he is always hopeful and anxious to find out if it will continue! (Boy Girl Boy Girl Boy)

  25. I think not knowing makes me anticipate labor so much more! I knew with the first, but haven’t with the last three and every time I am so excited to go into labor!

  26. I have four kids so far and twins on the way. I found out with number 3 that the baby was a boy. I was a little disappointed in myself for finding out. I too felt like there would be no real big surprise after he came out. However once he came out all of those thoughts went away and it just didn’t matter anymore. :) Being pregnant with twins now, I am having a hard time deciding if I should just go ahead and find out…to make it easier upon myself. But I keep thinking about that feeling I had knowing what #3 was. So I am thinking I will just wait it out. Although I do have a hunch there is a boy and a girl.

  27. When I was having babies back in the ice age, we couldn’t find out. All my son’s and their wives have found out ahead of time. My daughter chose not to find out…..she did want a boy (though of course we know, she would have been thrilled with a little girl as well) People gave her a lot of flack for not finding out…..but the colors she liked were pretty neutral and she just wanted the surprise…..and it was such a wonderful joyful climax to the hard work of labor. If I were giving birth again (a miracle, that would be), I don’t think I would want to find out. There is something about that surprise at the end of all the hard work that is just, just, awesome.

    I too, am hoping you can post the rest of the house story before you go into labor….it sounds like it could be very soon, so please if it’s not much trouble, could you post it asap….maybe tonight. Many blessings to you and your family….on your new baby and all of his siblings and on you and your husband and on your move to that NEW HOUSE (HINT!HINT)

  28. You can’t go into labor yet! You haven’t written the last of the house story! Hey, speaking of activities that aren’t labor-inducing…

    • My thoughts exactly Jeana! :)

      • Amen…I mean, really…I’ve been WORRYING about you possibly going into labor with an unfinished story! Gonna be just like a little kid now…please, please, PLEASE, can we have the rest (of the story)? Also, I hope you hold off on going into labor so I have a better chance of my birth date prediction being correct! ;)

    • You said it, but we all thought it. :D

  29. MotherLydia says:

    This little boy may want to come in the old house, just like his older siblings.

  30. I am at 18 weeks and sleeping great but feeling really tired still. Baby is kicking away as I type. We are two weeks away from the “big” ultrasoud but we have chosen not to find out this time. We have peek at our previous four and wanted to do something different this time. Really looking forward to the big anticipation of this baby’s birth!

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