Man at elevator bank: “Looks like you’re getting ready to have a baby.”
Me, smiling: “Any day now.”
Man at elevator bank, laughing: “More like any hour!”
I have conversations like this daily now. Walking around at work, 40 weeks and 3 days pregnant (so when I say “walking” I mean waddling), I feel like a ticking time bomb. I’ve learned that gigantic pregnant bellies are strangers’ preferred topic of small talk, so I’m reminded constantly of how much I look just like I feel – ridiculously enormous and ready to pop at any given moment.
I’m not actually overdue, of course. In fact, about half of all pregnancies go past the 40-week mark, according to the trusty “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” website. I’ve still got a week and four days before that’s the case.
But as the days tick by and at each weekly doctor appointment my OB says I’m still dilated “a fingertip at best” (which I wonder if she’s only giving me that much to make me feel better) I’m getting increasingly nervous. I haven’t felt a single contraction and baby Jacob has only slightly dropped. The only sign the end is near is that strangers can’t help commenting I look like I’ll give birth any second.
My cervix is “unfavorable” for delivery as it stands today. So what does that mean? If my doctor were to induce labor today, there would be an increased risk of delivering via C-section. I told my doctor I’d prefer to wait and not risk that. Even if it means I might have to eat Thanksgiving dinner with a full-size newborn squishing my stomach and leaving little room for turkey.
My doctor has ordered a biophysical profile for Thursday to check on Jacob’s movements, oxygen levels, amniotic fluid, etc. If there is any cause for concern, they’ll go ahead and induce right away. If everything looks good, we continue the game of checking and waiting until around 42 weeks. I’m not sure exactly what to expect with this test, so if anyone can offer insight into what it’s like please leave me a comment!
Going past my due date has me full of mixed emotions – nervousness that I’ll never progress naturally, gratefulness that I’ve been able to carry Jacob the full 40 weeks, frustration that I can’t plan for anything, anger with my uncooperative and aching body, anticipation for meeting my baby, and fear that I might, in fact, pop unannounced at any given moment (like while in front of an elevator bank talking to strangers).
Did you go past your due date? What was it like for you?
Megan Brooks is a Sr. Public Relations Specialist for Texas Health Resources, Stepmom, and Soon-to-be Mom who feels more than ready to deliver (though her body disagrees).