36 + 3 days pregnant
11 days until Sprocket
I am exhausted. My energy levels have been gradually waning these last few weeks and I’m now literally operating at zero. I’m not sure what it is; my low blood pressure, Sprocket’s large size, having back-to-back pregnancies, the constant fear and worry, my age, low iron levels, low blood sugar, or perhaps even a combination of all of these.
The Doctors tell me it’s probably just pregnancy itself but I find it hard to accept when I compare myself to other women at my gestation who are still working or dealing with their other young children. I can barely cook a meal let alone do a full shift at work.
It makes me feel guilty but I’m also aware of not overdoing things and causing any harm to myself or Sprocket. So for the immediate future it’s feet up on the sofa and tv remote in hand.
This week my wonderful friends threw me a baby shower. It was a beautiful taste of a normal pregnancy experience and one of the first times I’d allowed myself to truly celebrate my pregnancy.
Sprocket was active for most of the afternoon though I rarely took my thoughts from his movements and rested a hand on my abdomen throughout. During a quiet spell of about twenty minutes I took myself to the bathroom and laid on the floor in order to tune into him. Sounds ridiculous but it felt necessary for my peace of mind and he responded by giving me a few kicks which eased my mind and allowed me to get back to my friends.
We lost Nieve a week before my scheduled baby shower last year and that fact hadn’t escaped me. As I opened gifts of gorgeous baby boy clothes my imagination took me to back a year and I saw myself opening similar gifts but with pinks instead of blues, bows instead of flat caps. I felt a bizarre mix of happiness and sadness.
Matt was working away this week and I decided to brave a few nights on my own instead of staying with friends this time. On Wednesday evening I just couldn’t settle. Sprocket’s movements felt lighter with more gaps in between and by 1:30am I was wide awake worrying so decided to drive myself to Triage for monitoring.
I stayed hooked up to the CTG for over an hour, never quite trusting that he was moving enough. He was moving about 20% less than normal. Was this a sign that something was wrong? Or simply a normal deviation. All looked fine on the trace and I was discharged at 3:30am but still felt uneasy.
I woke in the morning with the same paranoia and fears and decided to return to Triage. Whenever I’m deliberating about whether to go in or not I remember an article I read about movements which said “Never wait and see”. its a phrase that goes round in my head and entices me to act.
Despite the fact that his growth is good, his cord and fluid is checked regularly and he’s a very active baby, it still feels completely plausible to me that he could just die. This last week my fear has intensified and I’ve been having daily episodes of overwhelming anxiety when there is a gap in his movements, followed by tearful relief when he does begin to move. It’s hard.
One of my biggest concerns is that I will live to regret not having my c section done at 37 weeks. I decided to delay it until 38 weeks because of the decreased potential for respiration issues for baby when born at this gestation. Everything indicates that Sprocket will be absolutely fine and that this extra week in the womb is what’s best for him, but I am literally terrified that that decision lies on my shoulders and what if something goes wrong?
I have a feeling that the next eleven days will be the toughest yet, but all I can do is keep going as I am. Keep monitoring, keep obsessing, keep hoping.