Due dates – a pain the backside, but here to stay! Assuming all has been well with you, your pregnancy and your baby, you’re not actually ‘overdue’ until 42+1 – and even that’s debatable…
It is far better to have a due month, so if you have been given a due date of 20 June think of the baby coming any time in that month.
Below are some ideas on how to keep the due date pressure off yourself:
- Consider keeping your due date to yourself and not telling anyone what it is. Instead, give a due month, as above. If you have already told people your due date, say you’ve had another routine scan and they’ve now added 10 days onto your EDD as it was completely off. You’ll be so glad to have done this as you can bet your bottom dollar the moment you hit your due date the texts will start coming ‘have you had that baby yet?’ or, ‘wow you must be huge now’ or, ‘you must be sick of it all now?’ When perhaps before the flood of well meaning messages you were actually doing OK! All this questioning plants a seed of doubt, making you anxious which can have a knock-on effect on the hormones which start your labour.
- Create a ‘Before Birth Birth Plan’. Come up with at least 14 lovely things you can do whilst patiently waiting for the arrival of your baby. For example, on your ‘due date’ go out for dinner somewhere you’ve always wanted to go. Day 2 – book a reflexology treatment (or whatever therapy relaxes you as this is what it’s all about!). Day 3 – meet friends for lunch, Day 4 – batch cook a load of food for the freezer (you’ll be so grateful you did!) go to the cinema, Day 5 – spend the whole day reading and napping, Day 6 – watch a box set whilst sitting on your birth ball, Day 7, go to the cinema – you get the idea….
- If you haven’t already, join a pregnancy yoga class and keep gently active with this and/or swimming. By this stage, enjoying being supported by the buoyancy of the water will be a god-send and a gentle swim will be of great benefit.
- Enjoy the slowing down and make it a priority. Your body is more likely to go into labour when you are relaxed. Do you really have to do that massive to-do list?
- Spend some extra special time with your partner. If it’s your first pregnancy, go out as much as you can as it’s so easy to just pop out now without having to think about a newborn! If it’s your second (or more) enjoy the quiet evenings just the two of you when your other kids are (finally!) asleep.
- Know that you won’t be pregnant forever! I remember going to bed brimming with expectation that I’d go into labour that night, then waking up still pregnant! Both mine were ‘over due’ by 10 days.
- Keep an eye on your baby’s movements. Your baby’s movements should not slow down the less room there is for them. See Kick’s Count’s website for information on this. And of course it goes without saying that listening to what your caregivers are saying is important, but so is asking lots of questions if induction of labour is being offered. Read more on informed decision making here.
I remember very well the pain of pelvic girdle pain and of feeling so huge and over it all. I know it’s not a walk in the park going ‘over due’ and feeling uncomfortable (or more than uncomfortable!) but very soon you will have your baby in your arms so hang in there!
It really won’t be long now.