Foetus at 33 weeks
Despite only being at work 2.5 days this week, it’s been a hectic week for all sorts of reasons – both in and out of the office. My throat infection cleared up and my voice is now, thankfully, back to normal (so I no longer sound like Kathleen Turner!).
Some interesting facts about being 33 weeks pregnant:
- Tadpole now weighs just over 4lbs and measures a little over 17 inches from top to toe (which explains why I’m now getting an occasional kick in the ribs from our lanky kid!)
- Tad is most likely now head-down in my womb although s/he may still change position several times before birth (I really must ask my midwife at the next appointment which way up Tad is!)
- Tadpole’s head may move into my pelvis this week (apparently this happens at about this time in approximately half of all first-time mums!)
- If Tadpole were decide to be born today, there’d be a very good chance that s/he would be able to breath for him/herself, as the lungs will now have matured a fairly decent amount (although there’s still more development to come each day that Tad remains inside!)
- If Tadpole were to be born today, s/he would have a 95% chance of survival (this won’t change again until next week)
- There are now just 49 days till our Estimated Due Date!
It seems the fabled “burst of energy” that I was promised would occur during my second trimester (which never materialised) has finally happened – although it’s come a bit late as I now can’t actually do all that much with this energy, as I get breathless and tired very quickly these days. This means I tend to get quite restless and antsy a lot of the time and have to get up frequently just to stretch my legs and expend some of the excess energy coursing through me! It has, however, meant that walking to work the past few days has been easier than it’s been in quite a while – I don’t have to stop as often en route, even if I am waddling rather slowly (my pre-pregnancy walk to work took about 20-25 minutes – it now takes me 40-45 minutes!).
My concentration still wanders a lot, but I’m finding that I manage to get through quite a lot in those short bursts of “normal” brain activity time and I’ve actually managed to finish compiling my “How to do pretty much everything” guide for whoever replaces me through my maternity leave from work. I’m going to have to use all my concentration next Wednesday morning, however, as I have a job interview! I’ve applied for a slightly more senior position in my department which, if I got it, would include a raise of several thousand pounds per year (which would come in very handy!). I wasn’t going to go for it, due to very shortly going on maternity leave, but then I thought to myself, “If I wasn’t pregnant, I would definitely go for it, so what’s stopping me, really?” I handed in my application on the last day, about an hour before closing. I’ll let you all know how it turns out…
This weeks antenatal class was pretty good, even though Dale couldn’t make it (he couldn’t rearrange his driving lesson, so he had to miss it – ah well, he’ll be there at next weeks one!). It was all about labour – our worries; our hopes; what we already knew; what we wanted to know; etc. It was at this point that I realised just how relaxed and groovy I’m feeling about the birth now. I was also delighted to find that there’s another lass in our class who’s been reading all the same kinds of books as I have and has very similar ideas about how she wants her birth to happen (she’s opting for a home delivery – kudos to her!). Neither one of us wants to automatically opt for medical pain relief (unlike almost all the others, who are already saying they want to be drugged up to the eyeballs from the start). We’re both going down the “Real Nappies” route too and delighted in discussing the eco-friendly options we were considering (it’s so nice not to feel abnormal for wanting to do the best I can for the planet as well as my baby!). I’m still amazed at the amount of women who don’t even want to consider trying breast feeding and are automatically reaching for the bottle. Sure, it might be easier to be able to share the feeding responsibilities with their partner if they use a bottle, but there’s always the option of pumping to give the baby breast milk – and that way Daddy can help feed too. I know breastfeeding isn’t always an option for every mother, but my philosophy is that you don’t know till you try – it’s best for baby, best for mother and is FREE – and who needs extra expense when you’re already having to pay out for other baby-related paraphernalia AND possibly face the prospect of less money coming into the home due to being on maternity leave and/or switching to fewer hours when you go back to work?
Ah well, each to their own.
Since having my extra-long weekend off work (the first two days due to being ill, the rest due to having annual leave), I am now feeling absolutely fantastic! I think I must have really needed the rest – and that’s what I did for pretty much all of the eight days I had away from the office. Yes, our anniversary was slap-bang in the middle of it, but going out for dinner and a movie was a nice treat and not at all stressful or tiring, and I purposely didn’t accept any invitations to go out and about during that time, so I was able just to potter about the place and do whatever I felt like doing when I felt like doing it. For example, Dale and I decided to take a very slow wander into town on Monday (since we were both off work that day) and look at getting a couple of toys for Tadpole. We specifically wanted a soft toy and a mobile – and we got both.
The soft teddy with gnaw-able feet was spotted first in Boots and we just couldn’t resist it. It’s only a small one and so won’t make Tadpole feel intimidated, is gorgeous to the touch, and the textures on the feet will be both interesting and soothing for when those teeth first start coming through.
After quite a bit of searching, we finally found the perfect mobile in John Lewis. It moves when music is played and all the tunes are by Mozart, Bach and Beethoven. It also has different settings to use at different points in baby’s development to help improve hand-eye coordination (among other things!) and is very soothing to watch and hear. Dale affixed it to the cot-bed immediately and tried it out. It’s just gorgeous!
Our Real Nappy supplies arrived this week (a gift from my Dad and Step-Mum), and we’ve been marvelling over the smallest size of nappy outers – they’re so dinky! The pack has sizes that will keep us covered right up to potty training (and, in fact, also includes a potty!) so it’s an excellent investment. It was also purchased direct from the Nappy Laundry we’re planning to use, which will work out cheaper than buying disposables (as well as being far better for the environment as we’ll not be adding to the millions of nappies that end up on landfill sites – hurrah!). We’ll occasionally use disposables when we’re out and about (just for convenience) but I’ve been sourcing out various eco-nappies which are more environmentally friendly and won’t sit about not degrading for hundreds of years.
I’ve also made some small revisions to my Birth Plan – just little tweaks here and there; the majority of it has been in place for quite a while now – and I’ve started to think about packing a bag ready for going to the midwife unit when Tadpole decides to put in his/her appearance…