The time of powerful kicks may now be here. The baby has a surprising amount of power and can give quite the kick to its sore mother. A well-aimed kick to the bladder could very well lead to peeing a little bit – see this as a little reminder to do your Kegel exercises. The baby now weighs about 1.8 kilos. But it still needs to grow bigger, and in the next eight weeks, it will gain about two more kilos. How much a baby weighs when born varies and is impacted by several things, including genetic factors and in which week it is born. If your baby has a penis, then the testicles begin their journey to the scrotum now. If the scrotum looks quite big when the baby is born, it’s nothing to be concerned about; the swelling is due to fluid that has collected and will go away after about a week.
It’s impossible to know what your childbirth experience will be like. But there’s nothing to keep you from preparing as best you can for the things that are in your control. In your birth plan, you can write down things that are important to you, regardless of whether you will be giving birth vaginally or having a C-section. And because you can never know with certainty how much of a rush your little one will be in, it’s wise to write up your plan fairly soon. Your birth plan should include your name and personal identification number, if applicable. From there, it’s up to you to specify what you want the hospital staff to know: for example, if there’s something you absolutely do not want, something you are afraid of or worried about, and how any other childbirth experiences have been. If the plan is to give birth vaginally – which it is for most people – it may be good to consider your thoughts on pain relief and birth positions. But you don’t actually have to decide on any of this in advance – just write down your current thoughts. We suggest skipping a lengthy novel-like format and going with bullet points that the hospital staff can glance at quickly if they’re in a rush. Your partner, if you have one, or someone else who will be accompanying you should also know what your birth plan says. Not sure where to start? The Libero app has a checklist. And again: none of this is written in stone. Absolutely no one will think it’s strange if you change your mind about something in your birth plan. You can’t schedule or plan childbirth in detail, and you won’t have any idea how you will feel until the experience arrives. If there’s one thing the staff on site will be used to it’s changed plans.
Maybe you’ve noticed that your partner is zoning out a bit from time to time? As you approach the finish line, a lot of pregnant people find it difficult to stay attentive and make decisions, and become fairly forgetful. This might be the outcome of sleepless nights, or their thoughts might be wandering because their body and mind are focused on the baby. It can be hard to focus on anything else when you’re thinking about childbirth and what it will be like to be a parent. This is often known as pregnancy brain. They might seem a bit inward-oriented, letting the world go on pause while checking out from most things. Sound familiar? Even if you don’t have a baby in your belly, a great deal of your focus is probably on the little bundle on the way. Things you may have been passionate about before might feel trivial now. This isn’t so surprising, just another step in your preparations to becoming a parent. You can prepare in lots of ways. Some are more concrete – like assembling a changing table, discussing insurance for the baby, or test driving prams (the Libero app has a good checklist for everything you need to discuss). But inside, maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed – what will it all be like? How will this new life affect your family constellation? How much time does having a baby actually take? Will you have time to yourself, which you’ve heard other parents talk about – will you have to give up your other interests? Talk about these things and how you’re feeling with your partner and your friends. There are no right or wrong answers, but it can help to verbalise your thoughts, and the things you’re thinking about are things that all parents go through.