Pregnancy Diaries: Week 34 – 40

Week 34

My midwife had some exciting news for me this week. After pressing down on my pelvic floor as though intent on breaking my bones, she confirmed that baby’s head has already engaged. Doesn’t sound like an exciting position or location to be honest but baby is having the time of his life (pre-life?), judging by his vigorous head butting antics.

Having something to do in the morning helps me get out of bed, otherwise I delay in hopes that a truck will come tow me out. I resort to crawling under the duvet and often falling asleep at odd times. That in turn hampers my night’s sleep, which is already plagued with waking up multiple times to use the loo.

My bump is now more powerful than my brain and the dominant organ in my body. It’s making my centre of gravity lower than Humpty Dumpty’s. Doing dishes is even more of a pain (who knew that was even possible) because I am now stood so far back from the sink. My feet have started to swell and my fingers have turned into sausages. It actually hurts when I swirl the foundation brush over my face.

Coffee is once again my arch-enemy. In a more violent, spill-my-guts-over-my-life kind of way. I puke as soon as the first sip of coffee so much as touches my lips. You would think that would force me to quit this game. But I am a pregnant, hormonal mama, (and stubborn AF according to my husband), so I am not one to back off. I switched to caramel frappés , thanks to 26 degrees of sunshine, and smirked at no one in particular when that went down with finesse.

I attract looks and questions wherever I go. It must be the hormonal stink. Oh and the bump might be a give-away too. Most people, especially those with kids, want to know if it’s my first baby. When I nod, they give me a layered look that is 60% congratulatory and 40% low-key pity, which, when I walk away and replay in my head, translates to ‘oh poor dear, you don’t know what’s coming your way’.

I went to London on Monday and declared it as my last project trip, only to return on Friday for a work baby shower of sorts. I was gifted with a collection and a card which read like a pretty predictable mat leave prophecy: eat, sleep, poop, repeat.

Week 35

I woke up today feeling like I was living a dream. The fact that I could log into my laptop at my own pace, had no meetings or calls to prepare for, no commute to stomach, no supplier to chase, made me feel lighter despite the extra 20 kilos I have gained in my pregnancy. I could get used to this!

I spent hours scouring my inbox, handing over all the little pesky bits that keep flying around when you are trying to wrap up years of work life in few days. I sent out dozens of emails, then napped between 6-8 pm. Had dinner, watched TV, then retired to bed again, lying awake till 12:35 am chuckling at random memes. I also had the best driving lesson even though it took me a good five minutes just to find a comfortable position in the car. Who am I? Was THIS what I was missing out on while running between Southampton and London with my nose buried in my inbox?

On a mission to keep winning, I motivated myself to go to yoga, sparring swollen calves with six other bump-wearing ladies. It gave me a full hour of dedicated focus on my breathing and labour techniques. Which is why I love pregnancy yoga so much, the only time in the week when I can tune into my gestating body.

Heartburn and breathing are much better in the third trimester, thanks to the ever falling uterus. Still not low enough for me to be fitted for nursing bras though! I am so annoyed with faffing around M&S that I am almost thinking maybe I can get away without them.

I went into office on Monday and was pleased with my productivity. My colleagues kept joking about my waters breaking. I managed to fake laugh through it without murdering anyone. During Heathrow runs, it was always, oh Sam you are going to give birth on the M3. And we will be there playing ad hoc doctors. This was meant to be funny of course but it gave me shivers of the worst kind. Please baby, I prayed. Do NOT do this to me.

I have been following some bad ass mommas on IG and they are inspiring me to blog again. Needless to say, with the endless preps and pregnancy exhaustion, it’s yet to happen.

Earlier this week, I suffered from severe tummy ache and constipation. Neither paracetamol nor gaviscon worked so the GP put me on laxido. Struggling with bowel movements with a solid baby lodged in your stomach is the kind of discomfort I would not wish upon my worst enemy.

Did another load of laundry today. Watching the swaddle blankets sitting innocently on the airer made my nesting hormones quadruple.

Week 36

This is the week when my energy levels reached a new low. I cannot function without napping every few hours. Power naps of 10-15 minutes easily drags out into an hour.

I have been binging on dates and downing raspberry leaf tea on repeat while phasing out caffeine (sob). Trying to fight my inner sugar monster and nourish my body with greens and fruits instead.

My bump is ALL baby. And this baby is STRONG. He is getting into good position and almost full term. I can feel his movements really deep in my pelvic floor. He rolls over, dances from side to side and responds animatedly to our touches. It feels beautiful when my good hormones line up. It feels a bit like an assault when the bad ones do. Throbbing, about-to-drop, sensitive AF bladder is NOT fun. My lower torso feels like it is one wrong move away from disintegrating into a cascading bloodbath.

Lately my resolve for daily walks has been slipping. Nizar gave me company after work to motivate me. Everyone says walking is the way to shorter labour and I want to do everything in my power to make that happen.

I am starting to find work a drag – but yeah, it’s been that way for a while now.

Went for a facial and was told my hydration was up (thanks extra fluids), but my eyes were dehydrated (thanks baby).

My best friend gave birth to a beautiful baby girl on the 30th of April. My first thought: O. M. G. My second thought: I am next! Gulp.

Week 37

All my nesting instincts have kicked into 5th gear this Bank Holiday Monday. I cooked a big batch of curry to keep us going while we focused on tackling the trickier items on our shopping list.

Mamas and Papas did not have our preferred travel system in stock. The idea of going through more shops looking at rows upon mindless rows of intimidating gadgets I had no clue about, terrified me. The endless options were mindboggling and the burden of making the wrong choice too heavy. I was NOT going to go through another episode of car seat demos, thank you very much. So we shelled out on a pricier iso-fix base and even though more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean more safety, that’s what we told ourselves to justify the extra spend.

Once home, we decided to get the car seat ready, just in case. We YouTubed, asked people in the parking lot, and poured over the manual. Back in the shop it had seemed pretty straightforward so why were we breaking into a sweat? Also, do we just leave it in the car? Or take it upstairs? We sheepishly called friends and colleagues to find out (answer: yeah, they are expensive, but no one wants your car seat).

Midwife appointment was good. Cramping is quite constant. Scars bright red and in abundance. Breasts feel sensitive and sore. Leg swelling is coming and going. The cot is all set up. Most baby stuff have been unpacked. My mom got her UK visa and will be flying over soon. I also had a false labour scare. It feels so real now!

Week 38

38 weeks, woah! One more week of work and two till due date. Everyone is on tenterhooks and all day all I get asked is: is this baby coming or what? I wake up in the morning and the question looms: could today be the day?

I am trying to walk for at least an hour or more on a regular basis. It does wipe me out but I am hell-bent on maximising my chances for a short labour.

If baby is awake and I touch him or speak to him, he is very likely to respond. I can spend hours just looking at him pottering around inside my tummy.

Ramadan starts this week and little will most likely be a Ramadan baby like his Mommy. 😀

I am trying to sit upright or on the birthing ball whenever I can remember to. I am scared that slouching will make baby turn into an unfavourable position in the last minute.

I have started to invest some time in setting up a new blog. Realised I had spelt millennial wrong. Oh baby brain! 🤦🏽‍♀️ I ended up buying another domain name and spinning it out slightly differently. Say hello to yours truly, The Millennial Ma!

Week 39

Happy that baby is taking time to prepare for his world debut but I also cannot wait for the party to start. Every twinge makes me wonder, is this it?

Every time I go to the loo, which is very often, the commode seems to have shrunk further.

Despite tiredness and swollen feet, I am still trying to walk. One day I managed a whopping 90 minutes. The next day I couldn’t last half an hour. My baby topped bladder felt like it would give way any minute.

I am still as active as ever – cooking, cleaning, window shopping and blogging. I have generally fared really well with tiredness levels in the latter half of my third trimester and bizarrely my appetite has been normal too. Ramadan trends have made me indulge in deep-fried bits and bobs though and I am disgusted by my self-control. Or lack thereof.

I finally bought some nursing bras, hurray! About time, I hear you say. Did not bother with the fitting lady in case she turned me away – again. Best to keep my hormonal temper away from provocation. I am pretty sure I bought the wrong size but at this point in my pregnancy, I couldn’t care less.

You know what I would REALLY love to splurge on postpartum? SHOES! I look forward to wearing nice shoes again. To things outside the style starved world of maternity fashion. To trousers. And jeans. Heck, just to feel like I want to look pretty again.

Week 40

I never thought I would reach this milestone but here we are! We have officially reached the great unknown.

Due date was a swelteringly hot day and I went around looking and feeling completely undone. Had a bit of a movement reduction scare so we rushed to hospital. Turns out baby was just being sluggish. In this weather, I really cannot blame him. Midwife discussed the induction option should baby not arrive within the next twelve days.

The constant stream of calls and messages has started to get to me. The last thing I am prepared to do is answer the SAME old answerless question.

I ran into someone at the grocery store who brazenly commented on the stark contrast between my husband’s crisp look and my ragged one. It’s 30 degrees, I am overdue by days while stressing over baby movements, and not to mention the obvious, GINORMOUS. What was I supposed to look like??? Beyoncé?

Two days into my 40 weeks, I felt intense contractions. Excited, I rushed out of the house to move things along. I was convinced that this was it. I told Nizar to get mentally ready. Despite my vigorous walking, the momentum fizzled out overnight. That triggered a wave of frustration I had not known or felt during my pregnancy. I was pretty down the entire day, snappy and irritable.

I can feel the difference in baby’s growth over the last week – so much so that I cannot differentiate between uterine contractions and baby movements. My lower back has been contracting too, as well as my bum and thighs.

I had a show on the 5th day which got me really excited. I dashed off to the park and walked like a madwoman, encouraged by periodic twinges in my uterus. It eventually fizzled out – again – leaving me heartbroken.

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