Today I hit week number 30 of my sixth pregnancy. It is the point in pregnancy where I think, “Wow! This pregnancy is flying by!” and, “Wow! Could this pregnancy go any slower??” I think part of that has to do with the fact I just went through this same stage of pregnancy a little over a year ago.
I need to keep busy in order to help pass the time, so I decided to make a list, not only for my readers, but also for myself! 🙂
Here are 10 things to do during your last ten weeks of pregnancy:
- Nap. Nap as often as possible. I cannot stress how vital this is! Especially if you have no other children at home. As soon as your baby arrives, you are going to miss sleep. So why not indulge and take advantage of every moment you can right now? (And while you’re at it, sneak in a nap for me, please and thank you!)
- Pack your hospital bag. Normally, I’m a procrastinator with this one. I usually make a list of things I need to pack, and then start packing as soon as I figure out I’m in labor. Some moms like to pack weeks in advance. I feel like I know my body well enough at this point to know how close to labor and delivery I am. On my list, I include things like comfy pants and shirts, hairbrush, hair ties, toothbrush, contact case and solution, glasses, chocolate, lip balm (for during and after delivery), slippers, going home outfit for baby (this time I’m packing a boy and girl outfit since baby’s gender is a surprise), and a picture of my kids. The last week or so before my due date, I leave all of these things easily accessible so they can go straight into my bag when the time is right.
- Wash the baby’s clothes. Usually, the week before baby is due, I pull out and wash the box of newborn baby’s clothes I have packed away. This time I will pull out and wash both genders’ clothing. I used to obsess over using only Dreft because I thought it was far superior than any other brand of dye-free, fragrance-free laundry detergent. (I’m a sucker for good advertising.) After my second baby, however, I decided to try Purex Free and Clear and LOVED it! In my non-professional opinion, I think it works as well as, if not better than, Dreft. Plus it is WAY cheaper! I have also used homemade laundry detergent (without adding fragrance) and have found that works just as well. Babies are messy (diaper explosions, anyone?) and you will find yourself doing several loads of their laundry each week (especially if you cloth diaper). Why not save some money doing what you’re going to have to do anyway?
- Daily kick counts. If you aren’t already doing this, now is the time to start! It is super easy and a great way to be on the lookout for any potential issues going on in your womb. Basically, you pick a time of day your baby is most active and watch/feel for ten movements within a two hour period. I can usually feel ten movements within a five minute timespan. It all depends on how lazy or active baby is at the moment. If you think your baby isn’t moving as much as he/she should, do not hesitate to call your healthcare provider. Don’t feel “dumb” if you call in and want to get checked out. It is better to be proactive during pregnancy than to sit and worry about baby. 🙂
- Practice timing your contractions. During my first pregnancy, we did it the “old fashioned” pencil, paper and watch way when timing contractions (which was pretty difficult during the late evening/early morning hours when we were exhausted). During my second pregnancy I discovered the Contraction Master website and instantly fell in love with how easy and simple it is to use! And now they have an app for iPhones and Android phones. Both the website and app will keep track of the duration of each contraction, as well as how far apart your contractions are. The app comes in handy if you think you might be in labor when not at home. The website is nice to use because you can print your results to bring with to the hospital. Check it out and see what you think! You can practice on those annoying Braxton Hicks contractions if you’d like.
- Go on a date night with your spouse. This one is very important! Pretty soon there will be another love of your life in your arms, demanding all of your time and energy each day. Spend time nurturing your marriage before baby comes. Talk about all of your fears and excitement about bringing home a new baby. Do things you both love to do (within reason… obviously if your hubby loves skydiving, that is a big no-no during pregnancy). Invest in each other so you can show love to your little one!
- Finish setting up the nursery. For me, because our house is small and every room is being used for something, our nursery will be the corner of our large master bedroom. My one year old is currently using the crib, so we will use the Pack-N-Play with bassinet attachment for the new baby until our one year old is old enough to transition to a big-kid bed. I used to paint the new baby’s nursery, buy a new crib set for the new baby, and spend oodles of time making sure every little detail was perfect in his/her room, so this will be a first for me, not having much to prep. As long as I stay off of the nursery boards on Pinterest, I should survive. 😉 For those of you that have this option available, now is the time to get everything set up just how you like it! I will also have my glider rocker (LOVE), cradle swing (another must-have), and electronic cradle bouncy seat (middle of the night life saver) in our nursery corner to help soothe baby (and me) during the tiny-baby-days.
- Make a list of people to call when D-day arrives. I have a list in my phone of people to text message once we head to the hospital. (I like to have all of the prayers from our close family and friends.) Once baby arrives we will call grandparents first, then siblings, then close family and friends, and then make a general announcement on Facebook. I prefer to not have anyone at the hospital waiting for baby to be born. (Our parents and siblings waited at the hospital for over eight hours before our son was born at 5:30 in the morning… Needless to say, I felt a wee bit stressed over knowing people were waiting and my labor was progressing so slowly.) After baby and I are cleaned up, anyone (in good health) is welcome to come meet him/her (and bring me food… lots of yummy, greasy food). Making the list before-hand will ensure that all key people in your life find out about the baby’s birth directly from you and not through the grapevine.
- Have a day just for you. Get a pedicure, manicure, massage, whatever you want to do. Anything to relax and feel like you are the most important person in the world. Because you are! Growing a baby is hard, exhausting, rewarding work, and you are a rock star! So you deserve at least one day/afternoon/hour of rock star treatment. Plus, at the end of pregnancy, it is nearly impossible to paint your toenails, so you might as well let a professional do it for you! 😉
- Don’t panic. I know, I know. Easier said than done. I get asked (a lot) if I’m nervous about having another baby. Yes and no. Yes, because I don’t know how or when labor and delivery will play out. I can go over at least a dozen situations in my mind where everything goes wrong (not according to plan). I think that the older I get and the more times I go through this, I realize just how big of a miracle giving birth is. And I also realize how pretty much everything- especially the outcome- is out of my hands. I have also learned to trust God even more and give all of my fears and doubts to Him (over and over again) because I know He is bigger than my situation and He has a plan, whatever that may be. So in that sense, no. I’m not worried at all. What will be will be! 🙂
I hope I’ve helped spark some ideas of things to help keep you busy during the final weeks. If you are currently pregnant, I wish you a wonderful, healthy pregnancy and baby! 🙂