This week I've reached an important milestone in the world of pregnancy... Tricky is now considered full term! For the uninitiated full term is a massive FIVE WEEK window when you are meant to go in to labour - if your labour begins before 37 weeks its considered pre-term and the "powers that be" will do everything to try and stop it (unless its a multiple birth, in which case your due date is approximately 37 weeks because of the lack of room!). After 42 weeks you're considered post-term or as I like to consider it "over cooked" - most obstetricians won't let you go more than ten days past your due date before inducing though.
The magic number of 37 weeks is chosen because the baby's lungs are now fully developed and ready to breathe in the lovely dry, recycled air conditioning air of the birthing suite. Ahhh.
Being full term has brought with it a small amount of anxiety. When getting a few Braxton Hicks contractions I find myself thinking "Should I be timing these? Just in case they're the real thing?" Every twinge and ache is now examined under a microscope because I'm concerned that I'll continue to just pass off labour pains as Braxton Hicks and then all of a sudden have to rush to the hospital and barely get there in time - I've known people born in ambulances and one born in a hospital carpark (with the help of some kindly strangers who had just been discharged after getting stitched up after a drunken brawl)! I've never done this before so I really have no idea.
I'm not really worried about my waters breaking in public - it would be a cool story for any witnesses to tell their family over dinner that night - and I'm aware that real life is not like the movies, and the majority of women will be in labour (and know it) a few hours before their waters do break and can therefore be semi-prepared. What I am concerned about is if they break in the car! I've heard horror stories of seats rotting and needing to be replaced (even if a towel had been put down just in case) and Hubby would definitely not be happy if his precious car was soiled in any way! He couldn't replace just one seat - he'd have to get the whole set replaced so they all looked the same.
Over the last few days I've heard three girlfriends' stories of waters breaking in the morning laying in bed after going through the initial labour asleep the night before. The labouring while asleep bit really appeals to me - but what about my mattress? Do I really have to put down a plastic sheet? No one tells you these things! Plus there is no way of knowing if its going to be a gush or just a trickle...
Did your waters break spontaneously? Where were you?