Week 40 – A day-by-day update

This is a special blog post as we’ve touched the due date on Wednesday Oct 23rd. I’ve documented this week day-by-day.

This is the last week… maybe?

Week 40 marks the end of the pregnancy for many women. Babies can surprise mothers being very early or quite late; I was told that first babies are usually pretty late.

This post documents what happened along the week day-by-day.

Monday Oct 21st

Nothing happens really. No twinges, no aches, no sore muscles. Nothing.
I don’t have any clue that can tell me something is about to happen. And in fact, nothing happened for real. Frosty keeps living their awesome foetus life in the womb, kicking and punching as usual.

Alternative uses of bump – mug holder edition: checked ✅

Meanwhile, I am getting a bit nervous about the next day’s scan. I am sure Frosty has gained weight and is all right, but you never know.

Tuesday 22nd October

It’s scan day, just 24 hours before the official due date. The scan shows that Frosty has gained other 300g, the same weight I gained on the same span of time. This means once again that Frosty is taking the best nutrients out of me while I’m not gaining any unwanted fat.

The ObGyn asks me how I’d like to take it from there: options are to wait for the nature to do its course, or try inducing the labour.

I asks for her advice as my gut says to induce, while my brain says to wait: the more Frosty stays in the womb, the more they can grow.

Unexpectedly, the ObGyn contradicts my brain: the baby is fully “baked” at this point, and staying there for two more days or two more weeks won’t make any improvements generally speaking, if not making me more impatient and frustrated.

As she reckons I’m very energetic and in good spirit, she believes this mood could be beneficial when facing the pain of the labour. She then proposes me to try a membrane sweep procedure. That would mean to try breaking my waters right away, on the spot, seizing the day.
I don’t think about it for even a minute, and agree with that.

However, despite two attempts, the waters don’t break, and don’t seem to be easily breakable at this stage. It looks like the cervix is not ripen enough for this membrane sweep procedure to be 100% safe.

The ObGyn happily confirms that Frosty’s head is nicely engaged, and it’s sort of “working” on softening the cervix.

She then finally books me for the official birth induction next Sunday; a midwife will call me on Sunday morning and tell me what time I need to head to the Maternity ward.

Meanwhile, there are chances that this stimulation may trigger a natural labour, so I could also go into labour before Sunday, at any time.

I feel so much relaxed after booking the induction: I am a planner by nature, and knowing that worst case scenario next Wednesday I will be hugging my baby makes me fell in peace, and less impatient.

Wednesday 23rd October

OMG it’s due date! After 40 weeks, Frosty today weighs around 3kg (6.6lbs). It seems like yesterday when Frosty was that tiny little 5-day frozen embryo adventuring in my uterus.

We saw Frosty for the first time on a 50″ TV screen at the fertility clinic right before the transfer: they were just a transparent cell with a black dot at the centre. They were already perfect.

Frosty scared the hell out of me on week 6, and now they’re making me nervous as they don’t want to get out. Yet I wouldn’t change anything of these fantastic past nine months we spent together.

Everyone around us is super excited. We are so blessed to be surrounded by so much love.

Today I plan to celebrate myself, my body, my mind, this beautiful baby and the journey we walked together by hitting the gym every day until Sunday morning, and keep lifting the hell out of the gym floor.

Alas, when I wake up I just don’t feel fine. I feel exhausted and a bit nauseated, which is unusual. Actually, it’s the first time ever I don’t want to go out and be active – and it’s also the first time in 40 weeks that I experience some nausea. Am I going back to the first trimester perhaps?

I figure it could be only a big, unusual wave of relaxation hitting me. I don’t need to go out and exercise, I can – for once – accept the fact that I’m human, and take a break. I will resume my weight lifting celebrations tomorrow, as I will still have three full days, and perhaps also half Sunday 🙂

Thursday 24th October

We’re 24 hours past due date. I feel much better today than yetserday, so I hit the gym for what I hope it’ll be my last posterior chain workout. The people I know at the gym can’t believe their eyes I still deadlift 4×10 50kg so naturally, let alone being overdue.

When I come back home I have one of the most disheartened day at work; I am not sure if my hormones contributed to this feeling.

I start feeling some twinges here and there at dinner time – nothing painful though. I feel like I’m “full”, and I also feel a sort of pressure coming from all over my torso. It’s a series of very strange Braxton-Hicks contractions. Frosty is moving as usual, which is good news.

I notice some unusual, jelly and transparent discharges when going to the toilet: it could be the cervix plug slowly coming out, which is another good news.

I spend the night waking up every three/four hours due to aches very similar to an incoming period. Still no contractions though.

Friday 25th October

48 hours past due date. The day goes by relatively smoothly, with me and my radar in a hyper alerted mode, in the hope of catching some clues about an incoming labour. Nothing happened.

My parents have been so graceful in helping me ease the frustration. Franz is a saint.

Saturday 26th October

What do you do when the weather is utterly miserable by raining cats and dogs, and you know you’ll be induced in 24 hours? Easy answer for me: you write a long letter to future-first-time-hangover-Frosty, then you wear your gym clothes and go to the gym.

I’ve been repeating the “This could be the last session at the gym” sentence for many weeks now, and I think this is the last one before delivering Frosty.

Some people think I’m a hero; I think I’m just an endorphins junkie.

I weighed myself again, to close the circle of the preggo check-in pictures. My mother took the pictures again this week. The piece of furniture under the duvet cover is Frosty’s crib.

Weight has gone up 500g this week, from past week’s 51.1kg (112.6lbs) to current 51.6kg (113.7lbs).

I can’t believe these are my last pictures with an actual living bump (as I suppose I will still have some sort of bump in my next post-partum pictures).

My chart with weight and blood pressure figures is also completed.
I eventually gained a grand total of 4.8kg (10.5lbs) in 9 months, as opposed to the minimum of forecast 8/13kg weight gain. If I consider that I lost a ridiculous amount of muscle mass, though, I think I’m even.

On this very day, one year ago, I was being sedated to get my eggs retrieved, after 15 days of IVF’s ovarian stimulation. One year after, one of these eggs is about to see the light of this world.

I’ve been through so much in the meantime, included one painful fresh embryo transfer miscarriage, and I’m proud of the way I faced everything. I’ve got this Frosty delivery.

Sunday 27th October

Frosty wakes me up at 4:28, but I manage to stay in the bed, sleep a bit and relax until 6:45. I have breakfast and then I decide to jump on my stationary bike for a bit of HIIT while watching Rugby World Cup Wales vs South Africa. That’s the way I try to control my nervousness. After 45 minutes of cycling, I get the call from the Maternity ward: they invite me to get there in 45 minutes. Franz and I darts in the car.

I get assessed by Cristina, my midwife, and Frosty gets monitored for 30 minutes to make sure they’re all okay.

Then she tries to break the waters, but the cervix is still too high and tough. It needs to be softened, and to do that she inserts a pessary with a hormone called prostaglandins.

I get checked in – and Frosty as well – every four hours, in case this pessary hyper stimulates my uterus by triggering too many contractions.

The reality, though, is that nothing happens. I very rarely feel a weak background pain like a period pain, but nothing else. My feeling is that this pessary isn’t softening the cervix as expected, therefore I get no contractions.

The midwife says it may take a while, and also another pessary which they can insert after 24 hours the first pessary got through the system. It looks like my cervix is as stubborn as I am.

Cristina also suggests me to take some stairs as this activity opens my pelvis and can help the pessary do its magic. I guess this sign can use some more educational lines here at the maternity ward – Induction department.

It’s nearly 8pm now, the week is over, and I’m going to wrap up this post.
I hope to update you all with some good news happening over night, but I’m being a bit skeptical about it.

I can promise you, though, that the next post will be about Frosty’s birth!

2 thoughts on “Week 40 – A day-by-day update

  1. 🙌 You’re getting there! That’s the last 100 meters of that long race, and you’ll rock that like you’ve handled everything else in the past year.

    Enjoy every minute of it, both you and Franz! It may not be the easiest part of your pregnancy, but it’s one part you’ll remember fondly.

    Keep rocking! I’m rooting for you!

    Liked by 1 person

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