Hunkering down


Fresh from a deep nap in the afternoon, I finally decided to open up my laptop and scan through my inbox to see if there were emails that needed attention. For weeks now, I have stayed clear of most forms of communication. Sure, I check my email and my social media accounts. I lurk invisible on forums and boards. I give the daily news a cursory look and tune out.

I look at the calendar. April 1. We are in April I think. It sinks in slowly. This is the month I will give birth. I am counting down time. With each day that passes, I am one day closer to having a baby. Physically the changes are in my face. I look in the mirror and see my abdomen precede the rest of me by a good foot. I have trouble getting on and off the recliner. If I am by the stove, I have to be careful not to burn my stomach. Where I could walk a good half hour to forty-five minutes before, I tire easily at the fifteen minute mark now. The aches and pulls and twinges from my uterus are real. And painful. My ankles look like they have a ring of flesh around them. The swelling hardly goes down by morning before coming back in force. I constantly check my blood pressure for fear of preeclamsia.

Amidst all this I feel zen. Zen because I have no control on how things are going to unfold. A few minutes into my NST this AM, the baby seemed to have gone to sleep with very little movements. The uterine contraction monitor registered periodic peaks giving me insight into the contractions I hardly felt. Eyes closed, I imagined being rushed for a bio-physical profile. Of discovering that my placenta is giving up. Of being induced over the next few hours. I hear the technician exclaim that baby has decided to wake up. I look up and see reassuring peaks and valleys in the fetal heart rate chart.

I go home. Even as I nap, I am aware of the heaviness in my legs. I wonder if today would be the day. If tonight would be the night.

All this waiting is wearying. Yet, I know the end is in sight. Every day makes it real.

So, I hunker down, assume position and wait for the birth to happen.


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