Counting down

Now that the holiday season is officially packed away for another year and the boys are back in school, I am running out of distractions. Still another three-and-a-half weeks to go until my due date, which I fully expect to stretch out to an agonizing five weeks or more left in this pregnancy.

And so begins the obsessing. Since I can’t seem to get my head out of my uterus (and lord knows there’s little enough room in there right now as it is!) consider yourself officially warned that blog is about to go all-pregnancy, all the time.

Baby boy will be full term (37 weeks) on Friday, and given the latest ultrasound projections, he’s well over 7 lbs by now. Any time now is fine with me, even though we are not exactly ready in that the baby clothes have not been washed nor put in drawers, I do not have a birth plan or a packed bag, we have no idea what to call him, we haven’t really made any plans as to what to do with Tristan and Simon should I ever in fact go into labour, and I’m still loosely in denial that there will in fact be a baby who arrives at the end of all this.

I’ve developed a new fascination with the signs of early labour. With Tristan and Simon, I didn’t have (or, at least, didn’t recognize) any pre-term contractions. Only when I was hooked up to a monitor when I was at a past-due checkup for Simon and the nurse said, “That’s a nice healthy contraction” did I realize that what I had been assuming was the baby stretching was actually a Braxtion Hicks type contraction. So now that I know what they are, I’ve noticed them coming and going in waves — but of course, that’s all that happens. (Ha, look, there’s one now!)

The boys were both late. Labour started two days after my EDD with Tristan (and he was born 27 hours later) and I was induced 10 days after my EDD with Simon (and he was born 23 hours later.) I see this as foreshadowing — they’re reluctant to leave the womb at birth, and I’ll probably never be able to kick them out of the house as adults!! I also see this as confirmation that I have a mighty comfy uterus, and no expectation of seeing this baby any time before his official due date of February 1.

But, you also know I’m an irrepressible optimist. (I’m just not sure if hoping for an early delivery is optimism or insanity!) So, bearing (snicker) that in mind, tell me your stories. I need straws at which to grasp, bloggy peeps! Did you deliver early? Late? On your due date? And what was your first sign that labour was really under way?

Author: DaniGirl

Canadian. storyteller, photographer, mom to 3. Professional dilettante.

30 thoughts on “Counting down”

  1. Sorry, no story to tell. Max was breech and I had to have a c-section even after two versions, doing every single old-wives remedy and much begging and pleading to try and get him to spin.

  2. My water broke in the night following Reid’s due date, but just barely. It was the first cool night we’d had in weeks and so I stayed at home to sleep and went to the hospital in the morning to be checked out and, after trying to start the labour naturally, I was induced about 12 hours later. It took about 3 hours to feel the first contraction and then another 17 hours (and an epidural) for Reid to arrive. All this to say that Reid came 2 days after her due date – on the day that I had guessed when I registered for baby stuff at Sears and I got coupons equivalent to the value of everything purchased from the registry. (Thanks, Sears.)

  3. Bub: Water leaked 5 days after my due date. After a day of nobody being able to figure out if my water had actually broken or not, I was induced.

    Pie: Six days after due date. Contraction woke up up at 2 am, and I knew immediately that this was the real thing (as opposed to the many, many times over the previous two weeks I’d tried to convince myself that the eerily regular Braxton-Hicks contractions were actually labour).

  4. My water broke in the middle of the night with baby number one. Labor didn’t start and I was induced. Twenty-five excrutiating hours later, he was still comfy in the womb, head way up high, and I had a C-section. He was 8 lbs. 4 oz. Babies two and three were planned C-sections, weighing in at 8 lbs. 13 oz. and 9 lbs. respectively. They all had big heads, which is why, I’m told, they couldn’t make their way out the regular way! I guess you can’t really relate to my version of the birth story, but it’s fun to share anyway.
    And remember, the longer they stay in there, the better. (until they’re way overdue, I guess!) Even “full term” babies at 37 weeks can have trouble with their lungs. My doctor wouldn’t do a C-section more than one week before my due date in order to ensure healthy lungs. (and we still did a brief stint in the NICU with breathing difficulties) Hang in there!

  5. I was expecting Swee’pea to come about a week early. No reason, but that had been my instinct throughout the pregnancy (or maybe wishful thinking?).

    My due date came and went, no baby. I got grumpy and very very big. Three days after my due date, I’d had enough. I had a massage in the morning, and I asked the massage therapist to massage that pressure point in my ankles that is said to start labour. She obliged (she specialized in pregnancy massage so she knew the spot. So did my doula).

    After the massage, I had a midwife appointment and she checked me and said she thought I wouldn’t go that night but she couldn’t say more than that. My mom arrived that afternoon to relieve some of my grumpiness and boredom and we went out to dinner. My braxton hicks got stronger and stronger through dinner and when we got home I had a bath.My water broke in the tub, though I didn’t really know it, and my contractions got stronger. The midwife was all first baby, early labour lasts forever but eventually they came out and checked me and I had to go to hospital and blah blah blah I think you’ve read my birth story. I laboured all night and he was born the next morning at 10.

  6. Cass – he was a happy fish, so snug and warm…he didn’t want to come out! They induced me twice and he got stubborn and put on the brakes.
    But I like it in here!

    Rosey – Damn near a month early, I was watching tv with B and just couldn’t get comfortable. After watching me squirm around for half an hour, B talked me into going to the hospital to be checked. (I never HAD a labour pain with C, so had no idea what this weird funny (and non-rhythmic) ache was.)

    Two c-sections. My son is STILL slow to go new places and my daughter is STILL tearing through life, impatient as all get out.

  7. It’s possible to have a totally different experience this time!!

    My first son was 9 days past due, and the night before I was to be induced I finally went into labor. 34 hrs, epidural (ugh!), episiotomy (double ugh!), and a vacuum (triple ugh!) later, he came squalling into the world.

    Second son was 2 weeks early, had light, early labor for 2 days (no biggie, I promise!!), finally went into the hospital to be checked at 10pm on day 2, found out it was real labor but unproductive, had pitocin at midnight and a baby at 2:05 am. No tears, no meds, easy-peasy!

    Based on my own experiences, I think this one could be different. Anything is possible with childbirth! How bout we hope for right on time, and a nice, easy 2-hr labor? I think that’s the way to go!!

    Good luck – gosh your pg when fast for me! *snicker*

  8. With my first baby, my water broke at exactly 37 weeks. I woke up and thought I was just constantly wetting my pants, but called the nurse and she said it was probably broken water and I should come in to be checked. I asked if I had time for breakfast. She said yes, so Az and I went out to our favorite breakfast place and I ate banana chocolate chip pancakes. Then we went to the hospital.

    My other two were induced, at 39 weeks and 40 weeks. The 40 week pregnancy felt like it would never end. Any and all complaints about end of pregnancy you want to vent will get thorough support from this corner.

  9. Sierra – born at 36 w 0d. Water broke unexpectantly, labour started 30 min later, baby born 4 hours later. Very small, but strong, tons of feeding issues (sNotill have them at age 2.5 yrs). Full-term is the preferred birth.

    Brooke – born at 38 w 5 d. BH contractions for 6 weeks prior to birth. Labour started, thought it was BH contractions. 4 hours later baby was born. Mucous plug was lost day before labour started, may be due to the raspberry tea I was drinking non-stop and nipple stimulation with breast pump – I was uncomfy and wanted baby out! After a pre-term birth, I felt like I was pregnant forever!

  10. Labor started on my due date both times. #1, woke on EDD with a backache, he was born at 4:40pm. Despite being born on his due date, he had all the markers of an overdue baby, which the nurses commented on.

    #2, woke on EDD with a backache, labor slowed so I could go to work and help finish a big grant application, then picked up after my friend arrived to watch #1. #2 was born at 3am, 3 hours after the end of her due date. SHe didn’t look as “overdue” as he did, but she didn’t look underdue (does that make sense?).

  11. No story here either. I was induced for all 3 of mine. I’m not good at waiting, can you tell? I’ve been meaning to ask you, you get an entire year off, right? That’ll be great for you.

  12. Oooo, I’m looking forward to the all-uterus, all-the-time posts.

    I was induced 4 days before my due date b/c I suck at being pregnant. Still, the fact that I made it that long was a miracle. The OB put the cream on my cervix at 6pm. I had a restless, low-grade contraction night and knew I was in full-on labour when I barfed all over hell’s half acre at 9 am. Miss M arrived at 7pm.

  13. Baby #1 รขโ‚ฌโ€œ Born at 39 weeks, four days and weighed almost nine pounds.
    *Lost my mucous plug on a Sunday morning.
    *Early labour began Sunday evening.
    *Went into hard labour Monday evening.
    *At 1 a.m. Tuesday, went to hospital (with doula in tow) only to find out I was not far enough along to be admitted. Was given drugs and sent home to sleep through contractions during the day on Tuesday. *Drugs wore off and hard labour persisted BIG time on Tuesday evening.
    *Finally admitted to hospital at 1 a.m. Wednesday (yes, Wednesday!).
    *Epidural administered at 4 a.m. Wednesday, which of course really slowed the process down.
    *Continuous pushing (with my amazing doula and an incredible nurse coaching me) began at 12:30 p.m. and last for 4.5 hours.
    *Beautiful, chubby, perfectly healthy baby born just before 5 p.m.
    *Just two small stitches for Mommy. =)
    *Baby STARVING since I had not been able to eat since Monday evening. Breastfeeding hell begins…but that is another story!

    Baby #2 is due this spring. I am obviously hoping that it will be a quicker process this time around!

    Looking forward to following the next few weeks with you!!!!!

  14. Leah meandered into this world early, but not by a lot. I had scheduled my mat leave so as to have a week or so at home alone before she arrived. Worked my last day Friday, enjoyed the weekend. Labour started Monday night (felt like period cramps) and Leah was born Wednesday afternoon after about 45 minutes of pushing.

    Rae was 2 days after her due date, but arrived with the speed and violence for which she is still known today. Well OK maybe not violence, but high-spirited obstreperousness. I was crawling back into bed at 4 a.m. after one of my many late-night pees when my water broke (glad I’d put a waterproof cover on the mattress) and gushed everywhere. The contractions were very strong right away. Silly us, the people we’d arranged to leave Leah with lived further west than we did and the hospital is east. Lots of very fast driving ensued. Rae was born 4 hours later at 8:11 a.m. after 3 pushes. The doctor almost needed shinpads and a catcher’s mitt.

  15. Baby number 1 was late. I was induced 10 days after my due date. Felt uncomfortable from 1PM until 8:30PM when real contractions started. Got an epidural right away, and she was born 4.5 hours later. Breastfeeding hell ensued.

    Baby number 2 was one day early. Labour started on its own at 1:30 in the morning, went to straight to the hospital, this time with a doula and high hopes of avoiding the epidural (who knew that epidurals can adversely affect breastfeeding?). Labour was hard and fast, and baby number 2 arrived after a few hours in the hot tub and 25 minutes of pushing. Grand total of 3.5 hours from first contraction until birth.

    We left the hospital 12 hours after he was born, saw the lactation consultant twice in his first week of life, and have been chugging along ever since.

    So, maybe this one will be on time! Looking forward to following the final weeks with you!

  16. S1 was a few days early – I remember going into labour the same day as you, but taking 2 days longer. ๐Ÿ™ Lots of contractions going nowhere, tons of leakage but not confirmed as water breaking ’til day 2. Eventually needed pitocen and epidural, then she just slipped out.

    S2 was classic – huge gush of water as I was shovelling snow (on my due date). But not much happened until another even bigger gush 5 hours after the first. Lots of BH for weeks before, they just gradually got stronger after the 2nd gush. Midwives said it was an easy home birth (easy for them!), just missing the due date by an hour.

  17. Anabel was born in less than half an hour and it was easy-peasy.

    You never can tell!

    Good luck!

  18. Dani,

    I am also expecting to bring home baby about the same time as your little guy comes into the world. After over 1.5 years in the adoption process (and about 4 years trying to become a mom) I am supposed to be able to pick up my baby girl, Emeline, in 4 – 8 weeks. I can’t believe it!

    So, I’m “paper-pregnant” and way overdue!!!!! I also have been a bit in denial that it is actually going to happen! I better start lifting weights because Emeline is over 20 pounds already!

    I look forward to hearing all about the coming of Baby boy #3.

  19. There’s hope Dani!

    Baby 1 – induced shortly after due date due to my BP. 21 hrs of hard labour, and 3 hours pushing. He. was. not. coming. out.

    Baby 2 – went into hospital as I may have been leaking fluid, apologizing profusely for wasting their time as I wasn’t in labour, and two weeks early . They checked, I was 3cm. One hour and one push later he was here. Now it was one rather hellish hour. But speedy, easy, peasy compared to number 1. No signs he was coming. I was in denial I was even in labour, right up until I heard my water break as they were doing the internal as I had hard BH the whole PG.

    There’s hope!

  20. Two of my four children were born exactly on their due dates. NSLS was about three days late–she was a double footling breech and I had to have a c-section, but i did go into labor. Elder Son was in between the two due dates they had given me (before ultra sound was used to help determine size and age). All of my labors were fast — tFoMC didn’t want to go to the hospital with Elder Son b/c he couldn’t believe I could be ready yet, but ES was born only two and a half hours after I got there.

  21. well, my daugher was born 5 weeks early and trust me, you want that baby to stay inside! My pediatrician joked that after this kid, having a full-term baby would seem like a walk in the park. Waking up every 3 hours to feed her (which took an hour no matter how many shortcuts I tried to take) for over a month was simply exhausting. And that’s 3 hours from the START of the feed, of course. She was a tiny 5 lbs when she came home from hospital, at one week old. She’s now a very healthy and very squirmy almost two year old.

  22. Son#1 was born one week before due date. My water broke during the night and then came 14 hours of really intense labour, after which I had not dilated at all. Not even 1 cm. Nothing. Nada. The poor child had been pounding on my closed cervix for so long that he actually had a little bit of a cone head when he was finally delivered by c/s later that night.

    Son #2 was a scheduled, elective c/s which was delightful. Recovery was so much quicker than the first time around.

  23. Who can resist the invite to share the baby story? Only one so far… at the week 38 regular doctor visit, no more than a centimeter dilated and no indication of delivery. Next morning, 6:30 AM, strange ‘puh-chow’ feeling (don’t know how else to describe it) and then wet whoosh – water really really broke. The nurses that made me wait in the waiting room b/c the maternity ward was full said that the barometer had dropped and the empty rooms had filled right up that morning (and they were serious). I had to wait out in a wonderfully oh so comfy waiting room chair and breath through contractions until deliveries from earlier that week went home!

    So – depending on your weather, if it is as crazy as our January spring day here in the midwest US preceded and followed by frigid temps, you may be on your way any time now!

  24. Oh how I *loved* reading all of these!! Thank you so much! But, hmmm, I don’t see much of a pattern here. What you’re saying is that it might be soon, or later, or on time, and it might be a short labour — or not.

    Sigh. I’m so not good with waiting!!!!

  25. I’ll chime in late.

    Our first was three weeks early. My water broke at home and I had no contractions. Our daughter was born five hours later. She was breech which was a surprise to us and the doctor. I delivered her bum first and med free. She was in NICU for 5 days before she came home.

    Our second was five weeks early. My water broke while we were out for dinner with no contractions. Our youngest daughter was born 6 hours later, delivered by the nurse and the anesthesiologist. Another lightening fast med free delivery. She was in NICU three weeks before she came home.

    Both of our girls were born with holes in their hearts, both of which closed on their own. They are now a very healthy almost 6 year old and almost 2 year old.

  26. I’m late too… For my third, I walked over from my doctor’s office on DD to triage to check whether my waters had broken. then went into labour. but the labour pains were not strong and I was dialated 5 cm. After 4 hours of walking around the hospital, I finally told the nurses I was leaving. They didn’t want to let me go! By your third, you know your body. I knew I was not going into labour that night. the contractions were faint and sporadic.

    I went home and two days later was woken up in the night by sharp contractions. I started pacing…my heart was racing…I knew it was time. Our son was born 4.5 hours later (with epidural which tends to slow things down, right?) And yes, I walked around town for two days dialated 5 cm. Babies are ready when they’re ready. And a woman’s body is an amazing thing. sending you positive vibes.

  27. My little one was born 11 days late. When she finally dragged out to 10 days late, I asked the doctor to induce me… I hadn’t wanted to go that route, but I was getting worried about her size, as my mother had had big babies. Sure enough, she was 9 lbs. 3 ounces and had a large head. Next baby I think I might try to have induced a little earlier if he/she isn’t forthcoming!

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