Pregnancy and birth

31 weeks

God almighty: in fewer than 50 days I will be a mother of two!  How has this happened?!  Madness!  It still seems completely surreal that, in seven weeks’ time, two little half me/half Tristan hybrids will be joining us.  I feel ready for it, though.  I keep reminding myself that complete and utter idiots manage to raise children successfully, and we’ll manage it as well.  And in the meantime, I’m trying to relish the leisure time I spend on the sofa, lying in bed, or lazing around in the bath.   And on the rare occasion that I leave the house I’m enjoying the way in which I can get up and go in just a few minutes, without changing any nappies, changing any milk-covered outfits, or having to lug 20 kilograms of spare clothing, nappies and supplies with me.

Here’s this week’s Huggies update:

Your baby is getting longer with each passing day.  It is around 46 centimetres this week, only 7 centimetres less than the average length of a baby born at term.  Your baby is gaining more weight now than it is increasing in length. You’ll probably notice your baby’s weight increases when you step on the scales yourself at your ante-natal appointments.

Your baby is spending long periods of time in REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep.  This is a stage of sleep which is so important that some researchers say humans actually have 3 states of being, awake, asleep and in REM sleep.

More brain and complex nerve activity this week.  The connections or synapses in your baby’s brain are forming by the millions and are helped by the stimulation they receive in their insulated little world.  Your voice, household noise, filtered light, movement and music will all help these vital connections to form.

I am SO relieved that the babies figured out moving from the transverse position would be better for them and me – 46 cms would have been a long load to store sideways.  And we’ve got our next growth scan at the end of next week, so it will be fantastic to see how much weight the babies have gained.

If household noise is filtering through to the babies then I can report that their neurological development will be heavily influenced by The Amazing Race at the moment – I’ve had two separate series of it series-linked and have been watching it daily.  Hopefully this will help to breed globe-trotting children who fearlessly tackle weird eating challenges, and who can successfully negotiate cheap fares from non-English speaking taxi drivers.  Those are some valuable life skills, right there.

Here’s some additional information from babycenter.com.au:

Your baby’s organs are continuing to mature and she is passing water from her  bladder: good practice for the urinating she’ll do after she’s born. Soon you  can wonder what your baby is wishing for — brain scans have shown that fetuses  have periods of dream sleep around month eight.

You’ve probably gained  around 1.5 kilograms this month. Gaining 450 grams a week is quite normal during  the last trimester as your  baby has a final growth spurt before birth.

Ah yes, weight gain.  I was 69 kgs when I found out I was pregnant, and over the weekend I weighed myself and saw 90 kgs on the scales – holy moly!  However, that was later in the day: when I weighed myself first thing this morning, I was just under 89 kgs.  I reckon that I should stack on another three or four kilos before the end (and possibly more): the babies should be chubbing up nicely in these last few weeks.

It is a bit incredible to consider that I’m already 20 kgs more than my pre-pregnancy weight – largely because my body looks pretty much the same as always (aside from the enormous bump).  I don’t have any issue with gaining weight, of course, but it is very weird to have absolutely no control over your body, particularly if you’ve been used to being reasonably slim.

We saw the obstetrician today for our weekly appointment, and as per usual it was incredibly swift and straightforward: my urine test is fine, my blood pressure is great, the babies are safely tucked away, and on the whole I seem to be a very successful baby grower – yay!

However, if there was a big game of pregnancy bingo going on, where you got a point for every pregnancy complaint you contracted during the nine months, I would be doing pretty well: my latest development is a touch of carpal tunnel syndrome.  I didn’t realise that this was what I had until a couple of weeks ago – I was just experiencing a lot of numbness and ‘pins and needles’ in my hands.  Apparently this is classic carpal tunnel syndrome carry-on, so I’m just hoping that this is as far as it goes, and I avoid any actual pain (particularly as I’m whiling away my long hours on the sofa by embroidering something).

And to add to my endless random complaints, I was at the doctor today with the world’s sorest throat: a real ‘swallow and feel like somebody has stabbed you in the throat’ situation.  Apparently my throat is very inflamed and – gross alert – I have ulcers on the back of my throat.  No wonder it’s sore!  So I’m now on antibiotics to clear that up.

Other than all that weirdness, I’m just big and cumbersome, and completely unable to be on my feet for very long without feeling pretty rough, and finding it increasingly difficult to sleep comfortably… you know, all of the usual complaints of a heavily pregnant woman.  But not long now!!

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4 thoughts on “31 weeks

  1. Ulcerated tonsils? Ouch! I used to get that level of sore throat regularly as a child and the only thing that went down comfortably was stewed apple (to this day, if I’m feeling low/ill, I get cravings for stewed apple as comfort food). Of course as you are heading into summer over there though, I’m guessing cooking apples are a bit thin on the ground… how about ice cream? Sounds like there was never a better excuse if you ask me and I’m SURE chocolate ice cream is entirely medicinal… xx

    1. Luckily there are no tonsils involved (I had them whipped out when I was a kid), so it was ulcers on the back of my throat. Yesterday’s diet was all about yoghurt, rice pudding, pasta and ice cream, but thankfully things seem to have improved a lot today – I’ve even managed a sandwich. I’ll still have ice cream, though xx

  2. Thats funny – I don’t know if you’ve got a bug but my throat has been horrible lately. And oh the carpal tunnel, I spent a few weeks just after halfway waking every night wanting to gnaw my arm off at the shoulder. I sleep with wrist braces on now and it helps, oh god it really does. Do you have a breastfeeding pillow? I’m worried the carpal tunnel could turn into De Quendens (spelt totally wrong) tendonitis after birth so am going to buy a thick foam one to help her feed resting high enough. Since you’ll be feeding twice as often (scary thought!) I’d recommend one if you don’t have one yet. If it doesn’t go away after birth (rare but it happens) theres a cortisone injection for the hand. You can’t move your hand the next day but it deals to the tingling perfectly.
    I’m jealous that you get your internal heaters removed two weeks before mine comes out. SO HOT at night!

    1. I think Liz from the group has got a breastfeeding pillow for me, so I must follow up with her on that (and I really hope that I’ll be able – eventually – to feed both babies at once, or else I fear I’ll be feeding 24/7!

      I woke up this morning with a terrible tingling sore left hand – I’ll definitely look into a wrist brace if this continues.

      Sorry to hear that you’ve got a sore throat too! I have had mouth ulcers before when I’ve been run down (albeit not on my throat), so I think this is just my body’s way of reminding me that it’s probably working a bit too hard now..!

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