It’s nearly midnight and I’m WIDE awake. Not because I’m horribly uncomfortable or just woke to pee, but because I took a glorious nap from 9 PM to 11 PM. The nap was amazing. I fell asleep semi reclined on the couch–which is basically the closest thing to sleeping on my back in over a month. I’m usually a back and side sleeper. Side sleeping works because I have at once the softest and most supportive mattress ever. But sometimes you just want to sleep on your back, you know? Ahhhh. . .
Anyway. I’m not dying, but the last two weeks have been noticeably less comfortable. Sometimes the baby gets in weird positions which prohibit me from assuming my preferred slouching positions. Or he’ll dance on my left hip for days and my chiropractor has to fix me. My neck seems to constantly be out of alignment, and my lower back gets tired. The 2nd trimester honeymoon is over. But I’m generally alright.
Moodiness and anxiety have been amping up. Budgeting for the next 6 months and figuring out what to do about health insurance after January 1, 2013 are daily worries. I’m in the awkward too-wealthy-to-qualify-for-public-health-insurance and too-poor-to-purchase-private zone. Health insurance for the kid isn’t much of a problem. Its me. And heaven forbid that he is born after the new year. I want every one of you to gather your collective wills and prayers and rain dances and hippie labor-starting ideas and make this baby come on time. Oh please let him be on time. Just to be clear, I don’t want advice on induction. It’s not really an option unless I’m waaaay late, like the January 8th range. By which time, it’s a moot point.
Anyway, I’m still waiting for this to be real to me. I can hardly believe there’s an arguably viable baby in there. I feel him and see him, and I require elastic waistbands, and I look pregnant. But it might be a really temperamental tumor or something. I’ve recently taken to watching you-tube videos of premature babies in the NICU born at 27 weeks just so I can get an idea of what he looks like right now–a fully formed, if a bit skinny, little human baby. The videos are a mixed bag of tragedy and triumph, depending on the health of the little one, but they’re fascinating.
I’ve also taken to watching a lot of natural birth videos. I’ve heard so many people wail “WHY WOULD ANYONE PUT THAT ONLINE?” and to them I say, because they’re AMAZING, and incredibly helpful for those who are about to attempt it for the first time. If it weren’t for the fact that I’m a lawyer with clients I’d prefer to never see me in a weakened state, I’d consider posting my own.
I watch them like I’m reading a menu, and I mentally select the births that I would like mine to most resemble, as if I could order an entree. I’m sure labor will be a very in-the-moment thing, and my perceived preferences now may go completely out the window. But not necessarily. From watching these videos I can tell now that:
–I desire that no one tells (or worse–yells at) me to push unless I request their guidance in the matter.
–My husband will be, at all times, clothed (unlike the scrawny, COMPLETELY nude father I saw in one very earthy homebirth video).
–I want every person present to act (for my sake) so damned impressed with me that they explode with supportive but appropriately subdued “You’re doing a great job!” and “You’re safe” and “You can do it”-s.
–And I’m fairly confident that active labor will be spent in any position other than flat on my back–gravity and anatomy working directly against me. No thanks.
But mostly I just hope it goes well. I hope he’s on time. I hope breastfeeding is a breeze and I’m so filled with happy hormones that PPD stays far away. I hope I find good insurance and hope my husband finds a good green building career after graduation. I hope for more good clients and less heartburn. I hope for more friends close by.
And yikes it’s late. I hope I’ll get to sleep tonight. I guess I will leave you with this gem of a photo essay: Barbie’s home birth. As my friend LitChick said, it’s “Proof that even anatomically implausible women deserve options and empowerment in birth.”