Friday, September 21, 2012

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't frustrated to still be pregnant.  Thirty eight weeks, five days along (34+4 after finding out this tiny person was going to be joining our family), I can honestly say I thought I'd have delivered by now. 

I've been telling myself since the braxton - hicks contractions started at 21 weeks that my body would be well - prepared for labor by the time I hit full term at 37 weeks, and that the fact that I 'dropped' and started dilating at 31 weeks would leave us lucky to make it to 35.  35 weeks came and went, and then 36, and then 37.  We're about to watch 38 do the same, and I'm no closer to labor than I was a week ago.  I'm having contractions every 5-10 minutes, cramping, and frequent nausea - but this has been the case for the past week.  And I'm still only 2 centimeters dilated. 

I get that the 'average' pregnancy is 40 weeks long.  I also get that there are definite benefits to keeping the baby in the toaster til at least 39 weeks.  However, it doesn't seem fair, given that most women aren't experiencing the symptoms of preterm and prodromal labor for the last three months of pregnancy like I have been.  And most women aren't working a physically demanding job til they go into labor.  I might have more patience for this baby arriving on his or her schedule if it weren't for the fact that I have to drag my crampy, heavy, pregnant self out of bed to go break down pallets at 5am, five days a week.  I might have more patience if it weren't for the fact that it's not financially doable for me to quit working until labor starts.  The physically taxing eight - hour shifts on my feet, dealing with people who don't think I should still be working...these won't and can't end til my body decides it's baby time.  I'm miserable, cranky, achy, and...stuck, til this baby decides to come un-stuck.  Try running a cash register cheerfully with contractions every seven minutes.  People want to touch my belly, and it's getting embarrassing because it so often feels like shrink - wrapped coconuts stuffed up my shirt. 

At least it's proof that hard physical labor won't induce labor, I guess.  My coworkers and customers alike  seemed so sure breaking down pallets of produce cases was dangerous during pregnancy.  Well, then.  I almost wish carrying fifty - pound bags of carrots across the store would induce labor, because walking, running, sex, castor oil, and pineapple haven't done a darn thing.  I now have legs as toned as they were before pregnancy, a less...frustrated...husband, a squeaky clean digestive system, and a baby who is as comfy and squirmy within my belly as ever.  And seriously - it's been almost 24 hours since the castor oil adventure, and I think I'm having fewer contractions and less nausea now than I was before (but no fewer baby wiggles).  Maybe that's not a bad thing...

Seriously though.  Someone needs to tell this kid it's time to make like a migratory bird and head south. 

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