You know you’re on the home stretch when your belly button has protruded out, your stomach is so taut and hard it might as well be a solid surface rather than skin, your baby stretches as if he doesn’t have enough space inside and your energy level sometimes goes down a notch or two (slightly).
What else is it like to be in the last stretch of the third trimester?
At 36weeks gestation….
…You find it hard to finish a whole meal in the usual time it takes you and when you eat just a little bit more than the usual portion, you find it hard to breathe when sitting up straight. What a bummer that your growing belly cannot accomodate your voracious appetite because at this point, you feel like eating everything. Walking while talking, and sitting or standing in certain positions, cause your breathing to become panting. It takes a lot of shuffle and wiggle to get a comfortable position at night and even then, quality sleep is elusive as you wake up frequently for either toilet breaks, leg cramps, uncomfortable position or hot flushes. Its hard to go to sleep with a heaty body you are compelled to have night showers before bed almost daily. During slumber, changing position wakes you up because turning around in bed abruptly via certain coordination hurts you and needs very slow careful movements in order to just switch sides from left to right. You sweat all the time even in the air cond and going up a flight of stairs ( no matter how good for you it is) is slowly becoming a struggle building up to an epic proportion. You wake up every morning with sore legs and sometimes you wonder if your feet has started swelling a little. It probably has because some of your slippers no longer fit and when you sit or lie down for some time, both your feet hurt when trying to stand up and walk again. During solat, you move like a fat old lady trying to balance you heavy stomach and wobbly legs while you rise from your Ruku’ and Sujud, and during prostration (sujud) you find it impossible to breathe you end up panting afterwards. Frequent toilet breaks is a given but it doesnt help either that you’re constantly thirsty (probably because your body is heaty and you sweat so much from it). You may also have swollen fingers like I started having at the start of this week. Time to switch on my standby mode because the last time around, it took about a week after the swollen fingers to delivery.
I do feel my energy has waned a tiny bit compared to last week, but I still feel pretty energetic. I no longer sashay along of course, but people tell me sometimes, I still walk fast (even when I feel like an old fat lady, dragging my weight). Only sometimes i feel like lying down all the time because gravity and the baby’s weight is putting pressure on my pelvis and back and it hurts standing up.
Despite it all, I love being in the home stretch, because it means that the baby is not too far along joining us in the outside world and that all these difficulties will be over soon. Soon? Well, soon couldnt be soon enough. I am caught in between wanting him out now and wanting him in there a little bit more because truth be told, I am not yet physically prepared to receive him in this one two weeks. After the raya holidays, its all the rush and hubbub of preparing for my brother’s wedding, and then when that ends, there are a few more work related plans I needed to finalize. I havent even started packing the hospital bag (which if the government nurses know about I would be nagged at to no end). People are worried I might deliver earlier. I am just worried that it might happen at a time when we’re unprepared. Oh well, tomorrow is the start of my 37th week gestation. That’s full term already, ready or not, baby can come out anytime he wants. We just have to be prepared to receive him, physically at least.
To baby, whether we’re physically or mentally ready or not at this moment in time, one thing’s for sure, we anticipate your arrival, and will be very excited when you do come out. We will automatically be ready for you despite any obstacles, hopefully, InsyaAllah. We love you and hope you are well until we finally meet you out in the world. Be well baby dearest..