I knew the exact date I conceived my first born son — it was sort of under the Christmas tree on a December evening. The reason I know this is because it was right after I convinced my (then) husband that it would probably take a few months to make a baby and if we wanted to start a family, we should get on it. I felt my clock tick-tocking away and we both wanted a few children.
However, after exactly one shot, we were with child. When I marched into my OBGYN clutching my belly because I was over the moon about the bun cooking in my oven, she told me my due date would be on September 6th. Perfect — let the planning begin. I was ecstatic.
I went home, and slept for what felt like four months straight. I ate a shit ton of food and felt all the hormones racing through my system. I got sick, my baby grew, and I couldn’t wait to find out the sex. When we discovered we’d be having a boy, I went out and bought lots of striped clothing, converse high tops (because of course), and every plush stuffed animal I could find. You know, the necessities.
I painted the nursery and set up the crib. I came home after my baby shower, washed all his tiny clothes, and felt so extremely blessed I couldn’t stand it. As my belly and boobs grew to epic proportions, I loved walking around in my maternity clothes showing them off.
If strangers asked me when I was due, I eagerly told then, “September 6th!” I adored being pregnant and talking about my child and had no doubt things would go as planned.
And my plan was to have him home and then get the house cleaned and decorated for fall as he slept in his bassinet and the leaves fell gracefully from the trees while I lit Spiced Cider candles.
Everyone planned on coming to see him the weekend after Labor Day and I wanted to be on. And by that, I mean into my new fall jeans and sweater as I baked leaf-shaped cookies just in time for everyone’s arrival.
Are you rolling your eyes yet? Because in retrospect, I sure am.
As the days dragged by and his due date came and went I thought, Okay this isn’t so bad. He’s a few days late, it happens.
Then the phone kept ringing and everyone wanted to know why I hadn’t had the damn baby yet and when could they meet the baby and was everything okay with the baby and “OMG! YOU HAVE NOT HAD THAT BABY YET?”
So, I stopped answering the phone.
I kept eating Doritos and cheese sticks dipped in ice cream because I might as well live up this never-ending pregnancy, right?
I kept pissing my pants a little bit every time I stood up, bent over, sneezed or coughed. I ate the spicy foods my mom told me about. I came on to my husband every night and called him while he was at work every day and asked him to come home and get this baby out of me. We tried all the positions and I began to wonder if we were scarring our child with all of our sexual shenanigans. Maybe he’d decided to stay my uterus so long because his parents were sex freaks and he was frightened.
I went for long walks and while I thought I was cruising, I am sure I was just waddling along. But I kept at it because at least one thousand people told me walking is what made them go into labor so you bet your ass I walked until I couldn’t walk anymore.
On September 16, I cried in the bathtub. I was so uncomfortable I couldn’t sleep. I had to get up to pee every 5 minutes and was seriously considering adult diapers. I would wake up in middle of the night ravenous, eat something, and then be jarred out of a delicious dream two minutes later because my heartburn was so bad. I was on my 4th month of not being able to breathe through my nose because of pregnancy-induced rhinitis. I had already bought all the stores out of nasal strips. I was exhausted, uncomfortable and DONE.
I thought for sure this child was taking over my body. There was no room for my food, no room for my pee, and dammit all to bloody hell, there wasn’t a pair of unders or maternity pants that would fit me any longer.
You could feel the nip of fall in the air, but I was a freaking furnace. On the morning of September 18, I got out of the shower and saw frost on the ground so I walked out on my deck naked to air myself out. I didn’t care if anyone saw me, I mean, there wasn’t much to see because my stomach and boobs hid all my other body parts and the most important thing to me in that moment was to get some relief from the damn hot flashes.
But there is no such thing as being comfortable when you are overdue with a child, I don’t care what anyone says. You can take your advice and shove it up your non-pregnant ass. None of it works anyway, and the only thing you can do is wait with that child folded up inside of you until they decide to come or your doctor advises an induction.
I went from wanting to tell the world about my pregnancy, to wanting to punch them in the face when they asked me if I was having twins. I took my phone off the hook and had fantasies of threatening my doctor if he told me one more time I would go “any day.”
Any day wasn’t good enough for me. I’d lost my mucus plug, I was dilated and walking around with a head between my legs. I’d done all the things and he wasn’t budging.
On September 19 — almost TWO WEEKS past my due date — I had an appointment scheduled. I told my child during our morning stroll he needed to come out because I couldn’t carry him around inside me any longer. It was time for him to start pulling his own weight.
I saw my doctor and didn’t even sit on the bed covered with paper. I said, “I need to have this baby right now.”
A few hours later they were hooking me up to Pitocin and within a few minutes, my water broke.
Being pregnant past your due date not only makes you incredibly anxious and emotional, it’s hard on your body. No one wants to be pregnant longer than they are supposed to be no matter how much fun it is in the beginning, yet about 40 out of 100 women get to experience this special kind of hell, 5 out of 100 women have the agony of going two weeks past their due date.
While the reasons for your child not wanting to rear their head is unknown, having a baby born after the 40th week of pregnancy is rarely harmful ,but your doctor or midwife will want to check on things to make sure your placenta is working properly, your baby isn’t stressed, and your fluids are at a healthy level. This is why most doctors recommend inducing labor in the 41st-42nd week of pregnancy.
If you child isn’t budging and wants to stay in the depths of your uterus, it’s incredibly uncomfortable and you want nothing more than to get that human out of you and kick all the people who keep questioning you. As someone who has been there I can offer this: milk it for all its worth because people really do feel sympathy for you, and you can hold this over your child’s head when they are older and you want them to do special favors for you.
I still remind my 15-year-old son he put me through hell that last week so he owes me big time.