The baby is now 47.5 cm and weighs between 2.5 and 2.7 kilos, varying a bit by individual. The entire face is round now and looks more and more the way it will when you see your baby in person for the first time. A complete little person is getting ready to come out and only the final sprint remains – this is the last month. Even if you could give birth now, and your body is functioning as it should, the plan is for the baby to add about another kilo before that happens!
Being pregnant is tough on the body and psyche – at least towards the end. You’re fed messages about ‘enjoying the pregnancy bubble’ or ‘seizing the day’ and sure, that’s possible for some people, but more often than not, you feel stressed and worried. That’s true both when you’re pregnant and once the baby has arrived. And hearing about that wonderful feeling, rather than feeling it, can be really annoying. Lots of people worry that their feelings are ‘wrong’; they wonder where the strong feelings for the baby in their belly are, and might doubt their ability to be a good parent. All of these feelings are common and are due to all sorts of things. Maybe your pregnancy was unplanned, or maybe it was ultra planned, and took a long time and lots of tears – so of course the stress over feeling less than overjoyed can be overwhelming. Or maybe your pregnancy bubble is overshadowed by fear about childbirth, worries about the baby, or unpleasant memories from your own childhood. There could be thousands of different reasons. It’s important to have courage and talk about these feelings, because if you do, it could very well come out that far from all pregnant people are overjoyed. For the vast majority of people, feelings for the baby are a process that takes time to unfold – and how much time varies from one person to the next. Some people will feel love immediately during pregnancy or when the baby is born, but for many people, it actually takes more time. It could take weeks, or even months to feel that way. But trust that love never dwindles; it only grows. And to be sure, without thinking about it, already now you might have little expressions of care for your baby: a hand on your belly when the baby kicks, singing little songs, or the fact that you’ve actually changed much of your lifestyle for the sake of your child. Be kind to yourself! You’re going to be a good mum.
Maybe you’re wishing intently that the baby would just come now! Maybe you can’t wait to see and hold your child for real. Undoubtedly, all those thoughts about the baby probably include your impending responsibilities. It’s an absolutely staggering feeling to know that for a long time to come, you will have the privilege of being one of the most important people in your child’s life. When you’ve got a baby on the way, it’s quite common to start thinking about your own parents, your childhood, and what growing up was like for you. Of course, your view of impending parenthood is impacted by what your childhood was like and this is an important step in developing an emotional connection with your baby. You might look back on some things fondly and want to share them with your own children, while there may be other things you absolutely don’t want to pass on. Regardless of your experience of childhood, it’s a good opportunity to reflect on what’s important to you. How you are as a parent will be different from how your parents were, because you and your partner are two completely different people – but take the chance to discuss how to be the kind of parents you want to be, and what kind of support you need from each other.