No baby yet. And I guess there is no way of knowing how long this prodrome will last.
Two nights ago, I was getting the feeling things were very close, so I went to the mall to get a bunch of last-minute things. First I found a swimsuit for SR's daughter, then I was looking for a cd of relaxing music for labor and a wave a nausea hit. I left the store and felt regular contractions lasting over a minute each, that seemed to get stronger and stronger. I was so excited. I persisted in my shopping (which is normally something I hate to do) and found some sexy nursing bras (can't believe size 36 C was slightly small! This is coming from a girl who used to buy a B cup rather than an A just to avoid the shame). Victoria's Secret has really nice "racerback" bras that clasp in the front. While I was looking, though, I was doubling over in intermittent pain. The salesgirl and I were getting a good laugh out of it.
I called SR at the hospital, who basically said, "don't go into labor now... I'm on call."
I drove to meet him for dinner at the hospital, thinking this was going to be it, whether or not he was on call. But once I got something to eat and drink, the contractions basically disappeared.
We retired to the call room, for possibly our last round of call room sex, since this was his last night of overnight call. We've become big fans of doing our own cervical exams. This is, as far as I know, completely safe as long as the membranes haven't ruptured. Oh, and wear gloves... you don't want to rupture the membranes with your fingernails! The cervix is basically completely effaced now, with 1-2 cm of dilation and still at about 0 station as far as we can tell. The weird thing is, when we do the cervical exam, all of this white, flaky stuff comes out. Neither of us has any idea what that is.
It is an exhilarating feeling for me to be able to reach down and feel the little guy's head. SR likes to press on his head and then feel him kick in reaction. Oh, I wish he would just come out!
I've already had bloody show, and from what we could tell, the mucus plug came out. And now there is constant pressure in my back and pelvis. And, along with that, nausea.
As you can imagine, I've been making some attempts to induce real labor. So far, other than sex, I've increased the running to 5 miles a day. This is really good for inducing staggeringly strong contractions, but irregular. Then the eliptical induces pleasant, regular contractions. When I swim, I just get light intermittent contractions.
I haven't attempted acupressure yet. I'm saving that for this weekend, when SR is done with cardiology. But honestly, I think the baby will come when he's ready. And my symptoms and feelings of being ready won't affect anything. Gosh, I'm nauseated, though, and that stinks!
Last night we had our last preparation for childbirth class and we were practicing deep breathing and relaxation. We were supposed to picture somewhere pleasant, that made us happy. I pictured SR and I running in the forest late last March in the mud with the gray-white sky coming through the trees. He was getting near the precipice and looked back at me, smiling. It still seems unreal that I would find something so perfect in my life, a person, who in every way seems to be made for me. And to share a love that is so innocent! And I started crying in the class. So I imagined us in Pictured Rocks, looking at each other coyly as we got naked on the deserted beach. There was a storm approaching and the waves and wind picked up. We were like children of heaven, afraid of nothing in this world. And I cried even harder, not able to believe the beauty in my life. When I looked at SR, it seemed perhaps he had been crying, too.
So I had to picture somewhere that wasn't real. And I thought of the dream I had oh, five years ago now. I was somewhere in Europe on a mountain, next to a lake under a sunny blue sky. I was holding a little blonde baby boy and looking into his eyes, feeling perfect happiness. When I fell in love with SR last winter, I knew that little boy from the dream so long ago was his little boy. That I can picture without tears, because it's not real yet. But I think it's only a matter of time.
Running Song of the Day: Heartbeats by The Knife