Last year I spent some time asking people "the things they don't tell you about pregnancy" before deciding to commit to taking the leap myself. Seeing that most people I know how more than one child I assumed all of the good outweighed the bad. But I didn't expect there to be so many things that people forgot to tell me.
I was trying to get the scoop, the down low. Trying to figure out the things they omit from pregnancy books that you have to find out the hard way.
I don't like surprises, especially since I'm a hypochondriac. I think every twinge or pain I haven't heard about is a sign that something's wrong. So the first time I felt a shock-feeling in the crotch area I thought my baby was falling out and we were all going to die.
Ok, maybe my reaction wasn’t that drastic, but my eyes did start watering and I almost started crying because I thought my daughter’s hand/foot/some strange limb was about to emerge from my lady parts at any moment.
Instead of calling my doctor and chancing feeling like an idiot I did something possibly even more foolish and turned my medical questions to twitter, where women assured me that was normal. How something that shocking and painful could be normal I didn’t know.
The scary feeling went away by the end of the night and soon became a distant memory --until today.
It’s all because of what happened at my OB checkup Tuesday afternoon. I gained three pounds but was still the same as far as progression. About two centimeters dilated and 20% effaced.
Of course, there’s no way to predict what this means exactly or when labor will begin, but my OB threw out an estimate anyway, “towards the end of next week.”
Crap, that’s a week after my due date. Sure, that’s average for first time moms but I was hoping I’d be an exception.
The receptionist gave me some encouragement, “You never know. One of the doctors said that to another woman and her water broke in the parking lot on her way out.” It was heartening, but I wasn’t completely convinced. On my way home I ordered a large order of jalapeño poppers and some spicy tacos.
I downed those suckers as soon as I got home and took my dog Snoop out for a very brisk mile walk and a half. He was even huffing and puffing when we got home so I know I was tired too. I sat down to rest for a few moments and when I got up I felt a strange familiar feeling--was my baby about to emerge? It sure felt like it.
The pressure in my groin area was so bad I could hardly walk. I moaned the whole way through my living room and up stairs. I sat on my yoga ball for a few moments and it seemed to help a little but every time I stood up the feeling would come back. Intense pain--heaviness between by legs. Because of my really bad cankles, my OB said I shouldn’t work anymore, and wrote me a note to start maternity leave immediately. I wanted to work at least one more day since I already had a story scheduled, but boy was I aching the whole day, and wishing I had listened to her.
I want to run right back to my OB’s office and have her check me again. I’m sure this pain means the baby has dropped more and is thinning out my cervix, heck, I’m almost feeling like I’m ready to push!
Walking definitely did something, and I’m still feeling the burn now. I just hope that it means she’s coming in the next few days! Wish me luck!
What other signs did you notice before labor started? It may make me hyper-aware but at least it’ll keep me entertained.
Visit Jennifer's personal blog BabyMakinMachine.com.