Wednesday, June 10, 2009

36 Weeks

From Baby Center:

Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. He now weighs almost 6 pounds (like a crenshaw melon) and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. He's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered his body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected his skin during his nine-month amniotic bath.

At the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. Full-term is 37 to 42 weeks; babies born before 37 weeks are pre-term and those born after 42 are post-term.

Most likely he's in a head-down position. But if he isn't, your practitioner may suggest scheduling an "external cephalic version," which is a fancy way of saying she'll try to coax your baby into a head-down position by manipulating him from the outside of your belly.

Now that your baby is taking up so much room, you may have trouble eating a normal-size meal. Smaller, more frequent meals are often easier to handle at this point.

On the other hand, you may have less heartburn and have an easier time breathing when your baby starts to "drop" down into your pelvis. This process — called lightening — often happens a few weeks before labor if this is your first baby. If your baby drops, you may also feel increased pressure in your lower abdomen, which may make walking increasingly uncomfortable.

You might also notice that your Braxton Hicks contractions are more frequent now. Be sure to review the signs of labor with your practitioner and find out when she wants to hear from you. As a general rule, if you're full-term, your pregnancy is uncomplicated, and your water hasn't broken, she'll probably have you wait to come in until you've been having contractions that last for about a minute each, coming every five minutes for an hour. Of course, you'll want to call right away if you notice a decrease in your baby's activity or think you're leaking amniotic fluid, or if you have any bleeding, fever, a severe or persistent headache, constant abdominal pain, or vision changes.

Even if you're enjoying an uncomplicated pregnancy, it's best to avoid flying (or any travel far from home) during your final month because you can go into labor at any time. In fact, some airlines won't let women on board who are due to deliver within 30 days of the flight.

Note from Jen:

Feeling pretty good this week other than some back pain. I am pretty sure that is mostly being caused by sitting at my desk all day, so hopefully by next week it will go away since Monday is my last day of work!!!

I went into the doctor on Monday to have her fill out my disability paperwork and asked her to check to see if Van was still breech so I could know if I need to continue to do my exercises (you are supposed to stop if he has turned or risk flipping him back to breech). She felt around and said she was pretty sure that his head was down low since it seemed a bit harder down there and since she could hear his heartbeat better down lower. Needless to say I was so relieved and excited.

During the appointment I received a call from the lady who did our 4D ultrasound saying that we could come in on Tuesday and she would do a quick ultrasound to see what positions he was in... for FREE! We had called her up over the weekend to see if she could do a 5 minute ultrasound for us to see if he was breech and totally planned on paying for it. She is so nice and didn't want to charge us anything... she wouldn't even take the Starbucks gift cards we offered!

Anyway, yesterday afternoon Kenny and I went down to the ultrasound office and within a few seconds found out that Van was still snuggled into the exact same position he has been in for weeks... head still up with his feet in front of his face! All our hopes that we had built up the day before were dashed. He is still breech.

The good thing is that now I know for sure that I have a few days to get this kid to turn, so I will be doing anything I can. The other good news is that our 4D ultrasound lady said that if we do schedule a c-section, to come in to see her a few days before it is scheduled and she would do another quick peek for us just to make sure they aren't operating on me unnecessarily. She is so nice!

Other than the whole breech craziness this week, not too much other baby stuff has happened. We managed to go to Babies R Us last night without killing anyone, so that is a positive :) Only a few more things left to stock up on and then I think we are just about ready for Van to show up... well... as ready as we will ever be :)

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