Friday, August 18, 2006

still here, still waiting

It's a cool but humid Friday night, and we just got back from an invigorating walk on the Mississippi River Boulevard, where I made it from the parking lot to Randolph Avenue and back. I think that's two-thirds of a mile, if I remember the mile markers from when I used to go running on that stretch. I've been having contractions off and on all day, and I got a couple of them on the walk. They feel more intense than any of the "practice" (Braxton-Hicks) contractions I've felt up to now. They remind me of heavy menstrual cramps, how I feel on the worst day of my period, but they only last for 30 to 60 seconds, and they aren't at all regular. Just a couple per hour. Still, they get my attention and wake me up from naps, and I can't help wondering how it's going to feel when they're 10 times this intense! On the way back to the car, we passed a couple pushing a wee little baby in her stroller and imagined ourselves doing that very thing this fall when the colors are at their most vivid. "Trying to walk him out?" the mom asked me with a knowing smile as we peeked into their stroller. "Yup," I told her.

We had our weekly OB appointment this morning. The nurses and receptionists all know me now. "We were really hoping we wouldn't see you this week," said the nurse who took us back to our room. And when she left, she said cheerily, "We'll see you at your first postpartum!" Maybe, maybe not. We have more appointments set up next week for tests in case he goes past 41 weeks. The tests are to make sure he's still safe and sound in there and that my placenta is doing its job. Placentas have a life span, too, and after a couple of weeks, it could get too old and depleted to take care of the baby safely.

I'm dilated about a centimeter, and the baby's head has dropped some. It's now what they call "engaged" at 0 centimeters, which means his head has reached the pelvic cavity and begun to settle into it, whereas last week he was hovering a good 2 centimeters above it. That progress — plus losing the mucus plug and the ongoing bloody show this week — has been so encouraging! Yet today has been hard. I'm so eager for things to get moving that it's hard to stay patient. I've been itching more again, especially on my belly. And I'm tired because it's harder and harder to sleep at night, so I find myself taking lots of naps. So it was a groggy, itchy, impatient day. I think what I need right now is a plan to make sure I occupy my time and get enough rest. It felt good to get a walk in.

The OB receptionist told us this might be our lucky weekend because the weather is changing and a front is coming through. Changes in atmospheric pressure tends to send women into labor, she said. I hope so! And so we have a handful of movies and the rest of the night — and indeed all weekend — to just wait it out.


barbara said...

Well, my dear, I'm over here in Brook.Pk. waiting things out with you guys! Silly, but I keep feeling tiny flutters of anticipation in my tummy!
Your encounter with the new mom on your walk sounds so cool--like you've become a member of the Society of Moms!

I'll be biting my nails all weekend. :)

One more thing: As things begin to move (i.e. the lemmondrop finally shakes ass, or head I guess is more accurate), remember that you are loved, very much by many people, that you deserve all the love in the world, and all of the wonderful things life has to offer.
God bless you, honey.

Monkeymama said...

It sounds like things are getting started, how exciting!! We'll be keeping you all in our prayers!

Missy said...

Oh, Em, I remember feeling the same way at the very end of my pregnancy. It sounds like you are very close and your baby could be here any time now.

Now is the time to do anything else you need to do that you won't get to in awhile.

I wish I would have changed the sheets on my bed and cleaned my shower before I went into labor! ;)

Take care - I'm thinking of you -