I have decided to move my letter to Pooh Bear posts to Wednesday now since all my future weekly doctors appointments are all scheduled for Tuesdays. At least then I can give accurate weekly updates!

Dear Pooh Bear,

Almost to full term there little one! Hang in there! Although I don’t doubt that you will be staying put for a while. As much as I am dying to meet you, I have a feeling you will make your mommy and daddy wait it out a little longer! That’s ok, I want you to come out when you are ready.

We just had your 36 week appointment to check on progress, and there isn’t much to report. They told me you were a good boy with your head down, and you were in my pelvis which was good. Other than that there isn’t much else going on. They are predicting you to be a small baby, and I told them I am perfectly fine with that. As you know I am terrified to give birth, so small is good right? I guess we’ll see when you come out! I don’t take these weekly progress appointments too seriously though. I know women who walked around for weeks centimeters dilated, and others who went from zero to fully dilated within hours. I don’t think there is any rhyme or reason to it so I am just trying to take it day by day.

I look at my body like a ticking time bomb these days. I know that pretty much any day you could decide it’s time, and therefore I am just left waiting to see what happens. I have been feeling period like cramping every once in a while too. I asked the doctor about it, and she said it’s probably contractions. But they have been very far apart, so who knows. But just feeling those gets my mind whirling! Boy do I wish I could have some wine to settle my crazy head! I feel like I have kept the crazies in check pretty well through out this pregnancy, but I don’t know how much longer I can keep them at bay.

I also keep thinking about how lucky I have been through this pregnancy. Right from the start, and I worry that there is no way it can keep going like this. I know it’s a horrible attitude, but I can’t get the thought out of my head. Maybe God has just blessed me with a good pregnancy to make up for some of the bad stuff that happened before I got pregnant? Maybe I should just go with that.

Little Pooh bear you are rolling around like crazy in there. You are one very busy boy who likes to be up more in the evening. This is going to have to stop quickly once you come out because mommy doesn’t not want you to have your nights and days messed up for long. Every day activities have now become much more of a chore, and I am tired all the time. I am thankful for your Grandpa for being so understanding with work, and that your mommy is allowed to rest when she wants during the day. I think being able to do that has made this pregnancy much easier. He’s a good boss…be sure to thank him for that later on!

Pooh Bear: 36 weeks!

Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. She now weighs almost 6 pounds (like a crenshaw melon) and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. She’s shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered her body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected her skin during her nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture, called meconium, will form the contents of her first bowel movement.

At the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. (Full-term is 37 to 42 weeks; babies born before 37 weeks are pre-term and those born after 42 are post-term.) Most likely she’s in a head-down position. But if she isn’t, your practitioner may suggest scheduling an “external cephalic version,” which is a fancy way of saying she’ll try to coax your baby into a head-down position by manipulating her from the outside of your belly.

Now that your baby is taking up so much room, you may have trouble eating a normal-size meal. Smaller, more frequent meals are often easier to handle at this point. On the other hand, you may have less heartburn and have an easier time breathing when your baby starts to “drop” down into your pelvis. This process — called lightening — often happens a few weeks before labor if this is your first baby. (If you’ve given birth before, it probably won’t happen before labor starts.) If your baby drops, you may also feel increased pressure in your lower abdomen, which may make walking increasingly uncomfortable, and you’ll probably find that you have to pee even more frequently. If your baby is very low, you may feel lots of vaginal pressure and discomfort as well. Some women say it feels as though they’re carrying a bowling ball between their legs!

You might also notice that your Braxton Hicks contractions are more frequent now. Be sure to review the signs of labor with your practitioner and find out when she wants to hear from you. As a general rule, if you’re full-term, your pregnancy is uncomplicated, and your water hasn’t broken, she’ll probably have you wait to come in until you’ve been having contractions that last for about a minute each, coming every five minutes for an hour. Of course, you’ll want to call right away if you notice a decrease in your baby’s activity or think you’re leaking amniotic fluid, or if you have any vaginal bleeding, fever, a severe or persistent headache, constant abdominal pain, or vision changes.

Ewww littl one…you are eating all the stuff coming off your body! Yuck! No wonder you poop is so gross when you are born! That’s ok, I don’t mind. It’s all a part of the process! Hang in there little man! Soon we will get to meet you!!!

Love, Mommy