38 weeks & useless

Today marks 38 weeks so some time between now and four weeks’ time I will have met my little boy.

28 days doesn’t sound very long but I’ve been having contractions on and off for over a week so every time they start getting strong I think he’s on his way. It’s such an emotional time. I’m desperate for him to be here – and for this pregnancy to be over – but I want him to be ready and fighting fit. I want him to do as much work as Ted did when he forced his way out with no effort from me.

The midwife tells me it’s quite common for second babies to stop and start for a week or two so I’m reassured that nothing’s wrong. He’s still moving. But second babies don’t tend to drop down until you’re actually in labour so that movement is largely in my ribs. His feet are the same side Ted’s were – maybe my womb is better suited to that position? – so I’m sure my ribs will be even more bent out of shape after this one emerges.

The main problem I’m having is the sheer exhaustion. I don’t seem to have had a reprieve with this one, whereas with Ted my second trimester was pretty good, but for the past few days I just feel utterly useless.

I’m lucky that BabyDaddy not only works part-time but also does so approximately three minutes from our house. I never feel completely abandoned and I know he can get to me really quickly if anything happens.

I’m also really lucky that he’s such a brilliant hands-on Dad who sends me to bed when I need it and keeps Ted busy when I just can’t manage anymore. I don’t know what I’d do if he wasn’t here to help.

I feel like a terrible Mum to Ted, although I do my best to pay him lots of attention when I have a period of relative normality. He’s also got quite cuddly recently so it’s been lovely to sit and watch a film together when I’m struggling. We’ve managed to find a way to slot him in next to my bump and I think it makes us both feel a bit safer and more secure.

His language is coming on well but I’m still not sure how much he understands about the baby. Yesterday he read through his We’re Having A Baby book and patted my bump when I said “there’s a baby in Mummy’s tummy too” but I’m not sure whether he understood or was just copying me. He put a load of his old toys in the cot a couple of weeks ago but that could have just been a new game with a new object. I question everything.

I’m finding it difficult to walk and Ted hates being stuck in the house. Unfortunately he doesn’t understand that mummy can’t go down his slide or walk him to the park and he gets frustrated easily. He’s using his most terrible high-pitched whine quite regularly at the moment.

Everything feels like such hard work and while I know that it’s not going to be much easier when the baby’s here I also know how much more rewarding it is when it’s a little person exhausting you and not just a bump.

Most of all I want to feel like part of my family again and not some weak woman who retires to bed and misses out on the day to day excitement. I hear BabyDaddy saying “good boy!” to Ted and I wonder what I’m missing. I’m finally ready to deal with the challenges of introducing a newborn to a toddler and to being able to walk through the stair gate without scraping my belly on the catch.

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About Stitches and Stretchmarks

Honest and frank Mum of one.
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