It's here...your due date. The day you have been counting down to for 40 weeks, maybe longer.
And, it can be incredibly frustrating when there's no action. Except for your phone lighting up with well-meaning friends and family asking, "Are you in labor!??!".
Since only 5% of women give birth on their due date, you are certainly not alone.
Here are ten things you can do to pass the time.
- Take the word "overdue" out of your vocabulary. You are not overdue. You are due. Baby coming anytime between now and 2 weeks from now is NORMAL. There's nothing wrong with you. New research shows that every day in the womb counts as baby's brain is growing.
- Put away your phone. Answering one message after another with, "Nope, no baby yet." is just going to bring you down. It's better to stay positive. Let them wonder.
- Go for a walk. A long walk is a great way to clear your head and bring your focus away from your situation and to the outside world around you. The world is still turning even though your baby hasn't come on his/her due date. Walking is also a great way to enhance any small contractions you may be having.
- Resist the urge to google "how to start labor". Your baby and your body know what they are doing. Your labor will be shorter and easier if it starts on its own.
- Use "the hand". There's nothing like an obviously pregnant belly to bring on the strangers telling you their terrifying birth stories. When someone starts to tell you "Oh, I was 3 weeks over due" or "My birth was horrible, here's all the details" please use "the hand" and tell them thanks for the concern, but you don't have time for that.
- Go get a pedicure and splurge on the foot massage add-on. Encourage the giver to linger on a few certain pressure points on your feet and ankles.
- Schedule something fun to do every day for the next 10 days. Lunch with a friend, a massage, a concert. This way, you have something fun to look forward to each day, not just another long day of waiting.
- Set your email "out of office", your Facebook messenger, your Instagram and automatic text replies to this website www.haveyouhadthatbabyyet.com and then turn off your phone while you do #9.
- Go to the movies. Go to all the movies. Once your baby is here, going to the movies is really hard to do (because it's hard to schedule, you'll just fall asleep, etc. etc.) Sit in the back so you can stand up and move around every once in a while.
- Take a nap. For the love of all things holy, take a nap. If you fall asleep - fantastic! If you don't, rub your belly. Soak up the last moments of pregnancy. Tell your baby you are excited to meet him/her, but you know that baby knows when it's best to come.
The Doula Darcy is a postpartum doula and mother of three kiddos who has commiserated with many women who've gone past their due dates. She is a member of DONA International (Doulas of North America) and CAPPA (Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association). Join her Third Trimester Thrive 10 Day Program designed to help women take fun, easy action steps to get ready for being a mom.