Past Your Due Date? I Bet You Haven’t Tried This!
“The two week wait” usually describes the time period between ovulation and when you can take a pregnancy test. I’m told that this time filled with agonizing anticipation for couples who are trying to conceive. While I thankfully didn’t have trouble getting pregnant, I experienced a different kind of two week anticipation during my pregnancy – the two week wait between my due date and when my son was born. That’s right – my son went fourteen days past his due date! People were shocked that I was still pregnant and that my midwives would let me go that long. I knew that due dates are just an estimate. I knew that an induction meant a higher chance of not being able to achieve my goal of a birth without pain medicine. I knew that that as long as it wasn’t medically necessary to induce labor, it was completely normal and safe to give birth beyond my due date, but my due date came and went and my excitement turned to anxiousness. I was trying to let my baby decide his birthday, but the constant reminders from the people around me that I was STILL pregnant were very hard on my psyche.
“You’re going give birth to a toddler!”
“You must be miserable!”
“Why don’t you just schedule the C-section and be done with it?”
These are all things NOT to say to a 42 week pregnant lady! Honestly, even people who just checked in on me to see how I was doing and to ask if there was a baby yet really started to get me down. Every time I said, “nope, not yet,” made me a little more sad. Usually I pride myself on my ability to stay positive, but the negative thoughts started creeping in and I’d say irrational things like I’m going to be pregnant forever! Even though I was over 40 weeks pregnant in the sweltering heat of New Orleans summer, I really wasn’t that miserable. Yes I was hot and swollen, but that’s not why I was over being pregnant. I just simply wanted to meet my baby, and the long anticipation was draining. I’d go to bed each night thinking THIS just might be the night! It was as if I was a child going to bed on Christmas Eve with the excitement of waking up the next morning and receiving the gift I had wanted all year. Morning would come and Christmas was delayed … for two weeks straight! I just wanted my gift! I wanted to count his toes and find out the color of his eyes. I wanted to dress him up in cute outfits and rock him to sleep. I wanted to see if all my heartburn really did mean he had a full head of hair. I wanted my baby!
Before you comment on this blog post and ask if I tried X,Y, or Z to promote going into labor naturally … the answer is yes – I tried it ALL! From hypnosis, to raspberry leaf tea, to pressure points, to sex, I tried every old wives’ tale in the book! Did you know eating pineapple and eggplant parmesan magically put you into labor? What about nipple stimulation, have you tried that? My cousin pricked a capsule of evening primrose oil and shoved it up her hoo-ha, and she swears that’s what put her into labor! I’m now convinced that babies come out when they darn well please regardless of the ridiculous attempts pregnant women make to encourage labor! You know what they say about a watched pot, so if you’re beyond your due date – try your best to just relax and let things happen! Keep your mind occupied and go on dates with your spouse. Take a hiatus from social media if all the people constantly checking to see if they missed the arrival of your little one are driving you insane. And for the sake of your digestional tract, put the castor oil down! Guess what? It’s physically impossible to be pregnant forever, and delayed gratification can make the moment that much sweeter!