Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Fully Cooked

Stick a fork in me, I am done. Or Ooschie, is, rather. Now that we're at 38 weeks, he could be born tomorrow or in a month (god forbid). As you can see from this photo that was taken a week ago, he still hasn't dropped. I haven't resorted to draping myself in curtains instead of getting dressed (tempting though it may be), but a wonderful woman named Justine Light of Natural Light Photography took maternity portraits of me (I scanned and edited this one with some interesting effects - Justine'll also do the newborn portraits), and these curtains were the only flowy, drapy thing I could find around the house after my round of backyard Earth mama nudes. It was my first time walking around my backyard buck nekkid, but luckily it was an unseasonably-warm 65 degrees and sunny, and I felt unencumbered by self-consciousness. When you're pregnant, there's not much you can do about your body but love and accept it.

I can barely wear any of my jewelry anymore (been wearing my wedding ring around my neck for the past month or so), and even my bangles are hard to slip over my hands these days. I actually tore a chunk of skin off my thumb knuckle trying to get my favorite bracelet on the other day. Luckily, any puffiness I seem to be collecting is minimal, and is evenly-distributed across my entire body. I'm happy that it's waited so long, and that I seem to have avoided most of the other icky symptoms (no "mask of pregnancy" or stretch marks, and only a couple bouts of mild heartburn).

Until it hit me, I never realized how real and powerful the nesting instinct is. Two weekends in a row, I busted my ass completely in half cleaning the house like a fucking crackhead: vacuuming the lamps, bleaching the ceilings, washing the candles and mopping the walls. I tried to take it easy one day, but kept catching myself at the sink with a toothbrush in my hand, scrubbing grout, or at the front door, removing bits of adhesive that have been bugging me for months with a paper towel and Goof-off. I'd go sit back down, back and feet aching, and then find myself in another part of the house performing some equally non-essential task, totally unawares, as though I had been sleepwalking (the laundry room needed reorganizing, I swear!).

For the sake of good feng shui, I moved all of the dead houseplants out of the house and filled the empty spaces with my lovely potted crassulas and cacti (avoiding leaving them outdoors in the freeze of death this year). However, my favorite mummified coyote head is currently displayed beneath a bell jar in the house's creativity corner, with some scented candles. I'm not sure what that means for our house's chi, but everything looks so much nicer now and I swear I can feel a difference in the energy and flow of our home. (Ooh, I was just poking around the internet and apparently the SE corner of the house, where I put the coyote head, represents the "eldest daughter," which is my role in my family of origin. The SW corner, where I put all the nice, new plants, is the "mother corner," which is my role in my new family. When did I turn into such a hippie?)

I can tell my body is getting ready for labor, because now when I'm kicking back in the evening I randomly get a pinching jolt in my cervix (ooh! there's another one now!) as it opens and softens. As of last Friday, I am already dilated 1cm. It's so exciting! Ooschie is unbelievably active for being in such tight quarters, and his movements trigger lots of Braxton Hicks contractions. I feel like my uterus is clenched like a fist on and off for about 50% of every day (and night). It's kind of awkward moving around when my abdomen is so distended, but I guess I do alright.

Here it is: the fabled Totoro mural. Scott did such an excellent job. We still need to pick up the cozy little pad and cover for the changing table (as well as a few other little things) but as you can see, the nursery is pretty much in full effect.

The cradle at the foot of the bed was a gift from Scott's mom, who'd had it for years. We couldn't find bedding that fits, but I recently realized that the Moses basket I scored at Picolina's fits perfectly into it, so this will definitely be used a lot.

Some of you have probably spotted the red flags (dangerous crib in front of window/next to curtains and the choking hazard of the pull-cord to the blinds), but we know it will be a couple of months before we really have to worry about these things, and will rearrange accordingly.

I have no idea if I'll update again before I go into labor, but I'll try to keep everyone updated. Wish us luck!