Letter From America Part 8
I'm two weeks away from my due date. At this point of my pregnancy, I can just about perch the laptop on my belly as I write. With each passing day, I wonder how many more runs I'll be taking before my son or daughter gets to see the world first hand.
David and I took a leisurely four kilometer jog this weekend. While my stride is mostly a shuffle, it still feels great to stretch my legs and get out there with other runners. I look forward to meeting more Moms in the running community as I begin to explore my role as parent.
Emotionally I feel as ready as I am going to get for the arrival. There is only so much knowledge to be gleaned from books; they are a good foundation, but we know that no two babies are alike. We've got the crib set up, my hospital bag is packed and I've got my call list written out. Now I'm trying to distract myself until the baby decides its time to come out and meet his/her parents. A watched pot never boils, so I'm trying to keep busy. I'm planning lots of dinners and outings with friends before my social schedule is curtailed by the demands of a newborn.
My health is still strong. I think the running and other attempts at fitness have helped stave off some of the discomforts of pregnancy. My blood pressure has been low and quite stable throughout the pregnancy and the baby has a powerful heart beat.
I think some of my pregnancy regimen is worth sharing. Here are some of my tips for a smooth nine months:
Stay hydrated. I carry a bottle of water wherever I go. Being dehydrated is often a cause of discomfort and can sometimes send women into labor prematurely. Treat yourself to massages or other types of pampering. Massage is a terrific way to relieve lower back pressure created from carrying additional weight. It also has helped alleviate the pain from pinched nerves as the baby is nestling into my pelvis. Another bonus is the sublime experience of reclining on a specially designed maternity massage tables. Getting to lie on your stomach feels like absolute heaven after so many months of sleeping on your side. Keep active. Running, walking, swimming and other workouts have kept me strong and full of energy. As I see it, labor looks like a pretty grueling workout. I think fit Moms will be well prepared to meet the demands of bringing a child into the world. Staying fit has also helped me sleep better. Find a community. While I was never able to locate other pregnant runners, I was able to find a great prenatal yoga class. The women in this class were generous in sharing their discoveries and their questions about childbirth. With this group, I never felt like I was alone as my body was going through extraordinary changes. Know your limits. Give yourself enough rest and recognize when you are trying to do too much. Say "NO" when you have to. Make sure that you and your baby are a top priority. Rely on friends and family to pick up the slack as you slow down at work and at home. This is no time to try to be super woman. For now, I'll keep busy with my work projects (I'm so excited about the website coming to America this Summer) and keep dreaming of my baby. It's been an amazing journey and I think I can almost see the finish line now.