34 weeks pregnant

34 weeks

Hey mom,

Hopefully I’m not tickling you from the inside as my fingernails have pretty much reached the edge of my tiny fingertips. Also new? If I’m a boy, my testicles are dropping from my abdomen down to my scrotum. While you already know I’m gaining baby fat and my bones are hardening, the one place my bones aren’t totally fused is my head. The reason? It’s the biggest piece of my otherwise small body, and having slightly flexible bones makes it easier for me to be pushed through the birth canal. All that pressure can actually give me a bit of a ‘conehead’ at birth, at least until my bones have settled in my first year. Speaking of being firmly part of your world (outside of your uterus that is), some good news! Many premature babies born from weeks 34 onwards – as long as they don’t have other medical issues – grow up to be perfectly healthy.

First a foggy mind, now foggy eyes? That’s right, your pregnancy hormones have even started playing tricks with your eyesight. If your vision is feeling less sharp or your eyes are feeling more dry, you can chalk it up to being pregnant. Once again, your eyesight should return to normal once I’m born, so don’t visit your optometrist just yet. Remember that state of exhaustion you felt way back in the first trimester? Fatigue may hit you like a tidal wave right about now thanks to those sleepless nights, which is why it’s so important to have done as much prep work as possible – whether for my arrival, transitioning out of your job, or otherwise – leading up to this point.

One of the big questions many mommies-to-be ask themselves is what comes next after you’ve delivered your new little arrival. While of course we won’t head home from the hospital till we’re both given a clean bill of health, life pretty much continues on as before – only with a new, demanding interruption as part of your everyday routines. In preparation, consider leaning on friends and family now for some assistance in the weeks immediately after I’m born. Schedule some visitors so you can take a much-needed rest, stash some pre-prepared meals in the freezer, and arrange for transportation to appointments you’re nervous about attending alone. And while you’re at it? Get my car seat installed and inspected – if I arrive early, that’s one necessity you’ll definitely want in place.

Even when you’re feeling the most sluggish in these final weeks, just think of the end reward: your very own bundle of joy to cherish and love. And next time you look in the mirror? “Let us make pregnancy an occasion where we appreciate our female bodies.” – Merete Leonhardt-Lupa (Author)