35 WEEKS PREGNANT – 36TH WEEK OF DEVELOPMENT
Oh my, less than 5 weeks to go! Our little girl is between 18 1/2 and 20 inches long, and weighs around 6 lbs (about the weight of a crenshaw melon). These are all estimates, of course; I will ask at my next appointment on 12 Nov how big they think she is.
-Little Girl Geekling has soft bones and cartilage to help her through the birth canal
-Most of her systems are ready to go, except for her digestive system, which has been in practice mode for a while and will not start its active mode until after birth when she eats for the first time
-She has shed most of her downy covering of hair and a waxy substance called vernix caseosa that have both protected her skin while in the womb. Icky alert: she swallows these substances and they will come out in the form of meconium, the black, tar-like first bowel movement that newborns have.
-She is hopefully head down by this time, so that she’s ready for me to deliver when she’s ready to come out; again, I won’t find this out until my ultrasound at my appointment on 12 Nov. I think she is head down, by the way I’ve been getting kicked.
-She’s been kicking and moving a lot, which always makes me smile, even when it keeps me awake or hurts. I can actually feel what I think is a foot or a knee pressing up into my hand on either side of my belly. I love it when she moves; it makes me happy and keeps me sane, knowing she’s okay in there.
As for me:
-No let-up on the nausea, of course, but it’s as manageable as always. I’m SO ready for that symptom to go away!
-No let-up on the heartburn, either, but my combo of Zantac and Tums is still working
-My lower back has been giving me a lot of trouble lately, making it hard to sit, stand, lie down or anything else. I guess the pressure of the belly finally got to me.
-My poor feet are really swollen, a symptom not helped by the fact that fall in Japan has consisted of 70 degree weather so far. I’m really really ready for it to get cold outside, especially since they turned off our air conditioner.
We’ve been working really hard on the baby’s room, and despite some pains with the paint colors (the color we need to touch up the ceiling – where I had messed up with the blue and Jim tried to touch up with the beige – doesn’t seem to exist anymore), it’s finished being painted and officially in the decorating stage. We’re going to buy a rocking chair and some wood stain today, as well as a power sander (lucky Jim, although it means a lot of work in the next couple of weeks). We received my cradle from my infancy from my dad (my mom had kept it all these years) yesterday, and it will be sanded down and stained as well. We aren’t going to use the cradle as a cradle, though, because it’s really low to the ground (mom and dad, how did your backs not break!?); we will instead use it as a toy box, which is what it was for me up until I was a teenager. We are also going to get the crib mattress today and I will be able to put the bedding in the crib (Sakana will LOVE that). I can hardly wait until the room is done and I promise to post pictures of it in all of its elephant-themed, brown and pink wonder. Really, I’m just ready to have a wiggly baby girl to put in the nursery. I know parenthood is no walk in the park, but I’m so excited for the next step, and not just because I’m SO DONE with this part – pregnancy has not been fun for me! We’re really excited about meeting our baby girl, and I know you’re all excited to see her, even if it’s just through computer technology for a while.
Love and hugs to you all!