Well, Asa-here we are; near the end of journey together and I can hardly believe it.
I can't wait to meet you, to hold you in my arms, to feel you on the outside of me-but part of me is ok with the fact that I may have to wait a few weeks more.
Before I was pregnant with you, I thought I knew a lot about pregnancy. See, my Mom had nine kids,five of my sisters have birthed 10 children, I babysat throughout my teenage and college years and recently worked for years in a children's boutique. But once I really started researching more, I soon realized I didn't know near as much as I thought.
One thing that really astounds me about pregnancy is how much pressure the general population puts on a certain "due date". Less than 5% of babies are actually born on this "due date" and really-the date has no indication of how healthy or ready the baby is to be born. We actually have two dates-the one given to us by our Birthing Center and the one I gave you since I know the exact day you were conceived. Yep-the dates given to Mommas by their doctors or midwives are just based on a certain number of days after their last cycle. That's it. A woman is asked when her last cycle was and 40 weeks are plopped on to that date and the magical "due date" arrives. Funny thing though-I for one know my cycle isn't a perfect one-and I highly doubt every other woman has a perfect cycle....and many women need more or less than 40 weeks to produce a baby.
Another funny thing? Babies born between 37-42 weeks are considered "at term". Some babies born at 38 weeks are perfectly healthy, fine and normal just like some born at 41 weeks can be in need of medical attention. Babies born naturally without any medical interventions can come anytime within this window (and even a week or two before or after)and it's a totally normal thing. Most of my Mom's births came between 36-38 weeks. Many of my sisters gave birth then, too.
So the thing of it is, I've given myself a good six week window of "this is when Asa will come". I've completely thrown my due date out the door. Here we are, sitting in the middle of those weeks and that is just fine by me.
A couple of weeks ago I had my first cervical check. This was another thing I thought I knew about but was apparently wrong about. I thought that knowing how dilated and effaced you were was a good indication of when you may start labor, but after reading about and talking to others I found that (especially for first time moms) it really doesn't mean anything. I asked my midwife to not tell me any specifics-and she agreed she'd just tell me whether or not my cervix had begun to "ripen". Well, she barely starts the check when all of the sudden she exclaims "Wow". She proceeds to explain to James and I that Asa's head is at a +1 station and that we should be ready to welcome this guy into the world at anytime.
Like I said, that was a few weeks ago and here we sit...waiting.
So the lesson is...Asa, you will come when you are ready. I am healthy, you are healthy and that is all that matters. Soon enough you will be here and due dates, cervical checks and stations will all be forgotten.
So if you're a reader and actually took the time to read this-wow, bravo. And do me a favor will you? Next time you see a pregnant lady-ask her how her day is or tell her she looks great...please just don't say "when will that baby be here?". Thanks.