Dear Baby: Thirty-Six Weeks, Four Days

Dear Baby: Thirty-Six Weeks, Four Days

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Dear Baby,

After six-plus weeks of heightened stress and anxiety and uncertainty on my part, I want to thank you.

Thank you for waiting to be born.

Thank you for refusing to allow my personal stress to send those signals to you that it’s better for you to be on the outside than on the inside.  We don’t need anything triggering labor yet.  Not just yet.

It’s a simple but heartfelt thank you.  One that I really, truly mean, and one that you really, truly deserve.

And that’s because I know we’re not “there” yet.  Thirty-seven weeks, that “magic” point at which you’re technically full term, is still three days away; and based on our families’ birth histories, I doubt you’d be all that ready to be born on Friday anyway.

So I need you to keep waiting.

For a pregnancy in which months and weeks have flown by at an astonishing pace, these most recent days have seemed to drag on with astonishing slowness.  “If only we can make it two more weeks…ten more days…three more days…

There are times when I literally beg you to wait.  I talk to you, I rub my belly, I speak with those same coos and oohs and aahs that you’ll hear when you’re earthside and in my arms.

Underneath those coos and oohs and aahs are my quiet desperation.  I need you to keep waiting to be born.

For there’s healthy, and then there’s healthy.  There’s near-term, and then there’s full term.

There’s ready, and then there’s ready.

As always, I know that we are extraordinarily lucky to have made it this far.  Not every family is that lucky.

I also know that the gift of a full term baby is no guarantee of perfect health.  I am a student of Socrates, after all, and I know well the wisdom in knowing what one doesn’t know–and knowing that one isn’t all-knowing.

Nonetheless, your weary, stressed-out, anxious mama would still like you to wait.  Without any promises or guarantees about what our future holds, I’d like you to wait.

And I hope think that you might will.  I imagine think that we have a partnership, you and I–a connection that is, right now, with you growing inside of me, more intimate than any other human connection.

And if the channels in that connection are open–if the words I’m speaking, or the tone of voice I’m using when I’m talking to you, or the deep breaths I’m taking, or the feeble efforts I’m making to reduce my stress communicate anything to you–then I want them all to say this: please wait.

It’s alright to wait.

 

 

Until you and I are ready,

Mom



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3 Comments

  1. Jillian
    Jillian12-28-2011

    I’m just a week or so ahead of you, 38 weeks today, with my third. It’s amazing the lack of urgency you feel when you fully understand the importance of every precious day baby has on the inside. Having witnessed the issues caused by the birth of my nephew at 34 weeks and the stress and anxiety caused by just a two week NICU stay, I find myself lacking that desperate need to get this baby out of me that I’m seeing in the first time moms around me. I can handle a couple of extra weeks of discomfort if it means baby comes when SHE’s ready. Good luck to you. I hope things calm down and the stress eases a bit. Sending along happy, healthy momma and baby vibes.

  2. Molly
    Molly12-28-2011

    You’re doing great. You’re sturdy, and you’ve dealt with loads of stress before: in all likelihood, you’re making a sturdy person who doesn’t give a tiny little rat’s ass about some extra stress hormones floating around. Totally, totally, there are no guarantees and personal strength can’t prevent prematurity or other issues: but you two have great odds, and you’re doing great. In the meantime, I’m joining you in telling the little one to stay put, for what it’s worth.

    • BirthingBeautifulIdeas
      BirthingBeautifulIdeas12-28-2011

      The image of a tiny little rat’s ass has me cracking up. Thanks for the laugh, Molly. (And the wisdom, of course.)

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