Post #29: It's Three o'clock Somewhere

36 weeks in, and it’s begun… I’ve entered the uncomfortable stage of pregnancy. It started slowly… a Charlie horse in the calf one night, then some trouble with my sciatica a week later. I graduated from wearing a belly band over my pre-pregnancy work pants to purchasing an actual pair of maternity khakis. My shirts gradually started fitting shorter so that a portion of my belly was exposed to the breeze. Pee breaks increased from 2 to 3 and now 4-6 times a night. Tying my shoes turned from a mild inconvenience to a near impossibility from a standing position. My daily walk turned into a waddle and the hills surrounding my house became more and more of a challenge. My three o’clock naps changed from luxury to necessity, especially on work days. I have a strained muscle in my rib cage that becomes sore from having to support the weight of my ever-growing and consistently-dropping baby belly. I even discovered a new part of my pregnancy body and named it my “underbelly”. It’s section of skin where my stomach overlaps with my waistline. And it just so happens that this underbelly becomes increasingly irritated throughout each day by the waistband of whatever pair of pants, shorts, or pajama bottoms I happen to be wearing.

While the discomforts described undoubtedly interfere with my daily living, I think that they serve an important purpose: they remind me just how close I am to actually having a baby. I have known for nine months about this inevitable conclusion to pregnancy, but it's finally starting to feel real. And these aches and pains are giving me the sense of urgency I needed to finish preparing for the little one’s arrival. So, this week, after a beautiful shower in Massachusetts, I got down to the business of nesting. I made the baby’s bed, organized a diaper bag, packed my hospital bag full of a newly purchased nursing cami with pajama pants and bath robe along with going home outfits for me and the baby. In fact, I packed two outfits for the baby… one newborn onesie should he be of normal-size and another larger onesie should he actually be ten pounds like they estimated he would be back in March. My “nesting” didn’t stop there… I cleaned my car, got a haircut, and had a mani/pedi with blue nail polish just for good measure. Kevin and I even went to a two-hour breastfeeding class since we missed registration for the traditional day-long birthing course and figured it would be the next best thing.

After all of my hard work, there is still more to be done. There are new baby clothes to be washed and still more shower gifts to be assembled. But with Kevin’s help, we can get it all done in just a few more days. After that, I wonder if we’ll be able to say we are officially ready. I mean how can you ever feel ready for something like this? We’re going to have a baby! And, if I forget that for even a second, all I have to do is try unsuccessfully to stand up from a seated position on the couch or try and walk up a flight of stairs without getting winded. Thank you, pregnancy discomforts, for keeping my focus where it belongs. We are in the final stretch, and I can’t lose sight of what awaits at the finish!