Monday, 5 December 2011

36 Weeks


I'm going to stop apologising for late blog entries as I've decided to write all of the remaining ones on a Monday morning now. My time left with Ron, just the two of us, is running out and as he's been away with work quite a bit, I don't want to lose any more time with him and believe it or not it takes me a couple of hours to compose and edit these masterpieces!

I start this week, almost approaching the 37 week milestone, in a mild state of shock! Most of the NCT ladies have now finished work (just one poor lass still working away) so that glorious but very short era of being 'Ladies Wot Lunch' had arrived and just a few days ago, 5 of us were sitting in a lovely cafĂ© in the countryside, supping the finest English tea and munching away on freshly baked scones (just two each) with clotted cream and jam, chuckling away and I was thinking, ah, how nice, five fat birds passing the time, chatting away about life, babies, what irritates us about non-pregnant people's comments / behaviour, I could get used to this. It was glorious and it was very hard to believe that this daytime activity wasn't going to become a thing of great regularity and that we would all forever just remain as five fat birds (with the other three missing NCT ladies joining us of course) who met weekly and ate cakes and drank tea. Of the five ladies present, two of them were the first due in the class, one due on the 10th December, one on the 14th, so, in my mind, we still had at least a week or two left before anything was likely to upset the cake munching status quo and this was comforting. Then, yesterday, one of them only went and blinking popped out a little person - 10 days early!! It was very strange. Normally, when I receive these kinds of texts (and I have received a lot over the last few years with many friends who have now become Mummies or Daddies), I am over the moon and feel nothing but bubbly warm feelings inside but this one, as well as evoking those feelings, instilled me with great fear! Of course, I am over the moon for my new friend Jo and hubby and I'm very happy for her but it really brought home that all of us, in just a matter of weeks really, are going to end up having a new little person in our lives and this, now more than ever, terrifies me just a little! And what this really means is that I really will be going through the dreaded labour very soon and that terrifies me just a little as well. I think I have been in a state of denial about this for the last few weeks and just waiting for lovely maternity leave to start but now that it's here, the next thing is The Delivery!

And, as the big day approaches, more and more, I feel like I do when one of my long, nasty runs, like the Great South Run or something, is coming up where I am both really excited about it but really dreading it as well. Obviously, the part I am excited about is meeting the little fella and seeing his face (and hoping that he isn't too ugly) and the part I am dreading is the actual squeezing him out through a small hole and the definitive end of The Sleep-In.

I'm still a little concerned about how I will know when the real thing is starting and I'm sure that afterwards it will be clear that there is absolutely no mistaking it but the Braxton Hicks contractions have been getting more frequent, more painful and increasingly debilitating and when they happen, I think, hmm, is this it or not and, as before, the only reason I know they weren't real is because Shrimpy doesn't pop out. I hope it will be very obvious when the real ones start as I really don't fancy having Shrimpy in the lounge to the sounds of Jeremy Kyle shouting, "Why didn't you just stick a thing on the end of it?" or the glorious Judge shouting, "Baloney" in the background.

Anyway, so, last week was my first week of maternity leave. I started the week with mild panic about not being at work but this subsided by the next day and this very unique time, probably the only time in anyone's entire life where you get to not work, not feel cr@ppy about it and have total you time (as any subsequent times there will be another little person already present), is truly glorious and I am enjoying it hugely. I am so glad I brought the start of my maternity leave forward a week and I think about 4 weeks before the due date was just spot on for me as it gives me a week to sleep, a week to get busy and get on top of the few remaining essential tasks and another couple of weeks to take each day as it comes - do something if I want to or chill out at home lazing about on the sofa if I want to. It's given me a lot of time to appreciate the magnitude of what is about to happen and to come to terms with the fact that from a day not so far away forward, and for the rest of my life, I am going to be responsible for another person. Ron and I are going to be responsible for shaping that little person in to a big person and as much as you hope you'll never mess anything up, invariably, because we are all human, you will do, and then hopefully you'll learn from your mistakes, and, well, it's all quite overwhelming. But exceptionally exciting as well.

So, what did I actually do last week? Well, in truth, not that much! I had big plans to get on top of everything that needed to be done task and DIY-wise so that I was 100% ready for Shrimpy but it was very clear that what I really needed last week more than anything was sleep. I slept a lot. And I loved it. For the first time in years, I felt quite refreshed last week and even though I was awake several times through the night and woke up early every day, because I then didn't have to get up and suffer the long commute to work, I was able to snooze some more and some days I didn't get out of bed until midday. I haven't done this since I was about 18 but I really, really needed it so I'm feeling good for it at the moment.

It is actually a really great time to be on maternity leave though so apart from the poor planning of the birth date being around Christmas (which, as mentioned many times before, I had tried to avoid having suffered a Christmas birthday all my life - and moaned about it - a lot), it's turned out really well. I'm sure there is a danger that after a few weeks of not working I could potentially have got bored (I'm still not convinced) but with all the Christmassy stuff going on and shopping to do, it's really great to have the time to do this and there is so much going on in lovely Faversham (wreath-making workshops etc.) that I really can't see myself getting bored at all. So, I have pretty much finished doing Christmas shopping now and just have some cards to write and the tree has been up for about a month already so all in all, I'm feeling very Christmassy, which is nice.

Ron was away for most of last week in Russia which was very hard indeed and I missed him desperately (I was also a little concerned about what I was going to do if Shrimpy did make for a very early exit but fortunately this didn't happen). It sounded like a fascinating place though so it wasn't all bad for him and he even brought me back a real Moscovian hat, which I don't mind admitting I look rather fetching in.

Believe it or not, I am not a Russian spy
Anyway, he's back now and it's great to have him back - just one more trip to Paris this week with work and then I have banned him from any more trips out of the country!

Being at home during the week a lot this past week (and having ordered hundreds of things from Amazon) I have discovered a few things and these I list below:

  1. Some delivery men make zero effort to actually deliver your package! On several occasions last week, delivery men didn't knock but stroked the door and then ran off back to their vans and it was only because I am a super observant detective type person, aka Agent Wood, that I spotted them and ran after them to retrieve my package. What a cheek!
  2. Lots of charity type folk are about and spend their days knocking on doors begging for money (which annoys me as I give lots of money to charity by direct debit every month and object to being asked for more or made to feel bad for not supporting their particular cause).
  3. LOTS of annoying marketing people phone in the daytime (although I quite enjoy being rude to them really)
  4. There are literally BILLIONS of pregnant ladies or ladies with babies in Faversham. My God, they are everywhere when you wonder around the high street in the daytime.
  5. Daytime TV isn't as good when you can watch it every day

Being at home, I've also been spending more time than usual with my needy cats and I am getting really quite worried about how they are going to cope when Shrimpy arrives. They seem to be terrified of every little noise and continually behave like one of us going to beat them when we move (which is strange given that they have never been anything but loved and cuddled by us in their entire lives) so I really don't think they are going to like having the chaos and noise of a baby around one little bit. I really hope they don't run away as it would break my heart and they are my little fluffball babies. Fingers crossed but there's not much I can do to prepare them for sharing their home with a very loud and unpredictable little being. Poor Boogies.

Finally, the week ended with a short trip home to catch up with some old school friends and see my folks (possibly the last time I will see my Daddy without me being a Mummy). It was lovely to see my old school buddies who almost all have children and have a chance to catch up with them before the Shrimp arrives on the scene. How strange that when I met most of them, we were just very little children ourselves! Eek, doesn't life fly by. It was great to see the olds too and we picked up our Christmas present from them which, naturally, we opened as soon as we got back (an awesome speaker for the TV so that I can really feel the bass of 'In the Night Garden').

Other than that, I bought some new boots ...

Do you likey?

... and that was about it.

Ta ta for now. Let's hope Shrimpy fancies a bit more baking before the next blog entry as I'm not quite ready for this peaceful bliss to end just yet!

Current Symptoms:
  • Sciatica
  • Braxton Hicks contractions
  • Tiny bladder
  • Heartburn
  • Swollen everything
  • Bleeding gums
  • Shortness of breath
  • No contact lens wearing


Daddy's a very busy boy again with work and yet more European travels so no blog entry for now but he's doing great and seems quite excited about the new arrival.


I'm about 48 cm tall now and apparently weigh around 6 pounds (although I don't know how anyone could possibly estimate my weight accurately).

I don't mind telling you I'm starting to get a teensy bit fed up in here. There is virtually no room whatsoever for me to move about and I have to really whack and push on Mummy's little bubble to try to get comfortable. I've had to wedge my feet under Mummy's ribs on a number of occasions to try to find some extra room over this past week. I don't think she likes it but hey, guess what Mummy, I need to stretch and I will find room wherever possible at the moment. It's a dog-eat-dog world don't you know.

The annoying thing is that I'm actually ready for the outside world now. I'm in two minds about when to start heading down the tunnel at the moment as well as I realised the other day that if I wait for the due date or beyond, I actually miss Christmas all together and therefore, in my mind, I miss out on a whole load of extra presents (and I like presents) but, on the other hand, if I come out early, I have to listen to that bl00dy Christmas music at a much louder level (this fluid is a great muffler) AND Mummy and Daddy are bound to dress me up in ridiculous outfits, Santa's little elf or something, and I'm not sure that appeals either. Hmm, a double-edged sword really. I'll ponder some more on this and until I have made a decision for certain, I think I'll just stay in here - it seems like the safest thing to do.

No more changes to report this week, just fattening up like a big Christmas turkey really. Hope to see you all soon.

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