There's just 9 weeks remaining until you hold your little one in your arms for the first time, and even less time if you're delivering twins or multiples! You may be becoming quite impatient now and anxious to meet your bundle of joy, but the closer to the 40 weeks due date your baby is born, the lesser chance of health problems for both you and Baby.
Having said that, if your baby decided they wanted to make an appearance now, the chances of everything going smoothly are very high. Although your baby is still tiny and the lungs are still rather immature, your baby stands a good chance of being able to breathe without much assistance. In some cases, such as multiple births or in situations where the Mom-to-be has developed complications, delivering at this point could even be the safest option!
Baby: What's Happening?
Baby is very close to his or her delivery length now and shouldn't get too much longer before the birth, which is great news for your cramped uterus. On the other hand, your baby still has quite a bit of weight to put on, so don't think your ever increasing waistline stops here! Baby now weighs around about 3 lbs and is preparing for the next big growth spurt.
Baby is still getting all of the essential nutrients for growth from you via the placenta, and with this growth spurt on the horizon he or she will be going to town on your supplies. All these nutrients are going to help Baby put on even more layers of fat and as this happens the skin continues to smooth out giving that totally delicious "soft baby skin" feel!
As you'll know, growing a baby is hard work, and it's even harder being the one doing the growing! You may notice your baby having longer or more structured nap times now as he or she summons the energy to do all this growing. You may also notice that when Baby's awake they certainly make your aware of it! Now's a good time to start tracking your baby's movements.
Your baby is practically perfect at this point. He or she has hair covering the head and eyebrows, finger and toenails, and limbs and organs all in the right places. Of course, the brain is developing all the time, and your baby's senses are heightening constantly, but the only further development that is important before birth is of the lungs.
You: What's Happening?
Your uterus continues to expand and, even though you may think it can't possibly get any bigger, it can! There's only 9 more weeks to go, though! Your uterus now measures from your pelvic bone right up past your navel. In fact, it doesn't stop until it's about 4.5 inches above your tummy button.
As well as the swollen feet, aching hips and lack of sleep, you may be starting to notice something else around now: leaking boobs! Some women experience this earlier in their pregnancies, others don't experience it at all, which can create some difficulty when trying to breastfeed, but for most it starts to happen around now.
Colostrum is what your body produces before your milk comes in properly. Your milk may not actually start flowing until a few days after your baby's arrival, but the colostrum contains everything the little one needs at first. If you do start leaking colostrum, sticking a few breast pads in your bra is recommended.
If your boobs are feeling huge and if they're already producing colostrum, you may be tempted to buy a nursing bra but this actually isn't advisable until after you've had your baby! The reasoning is that when your milk starts flowing, your breasts will swell dramatically to contain all the milk and it's important that you get the right size nursing bra.
However, it's understandable that for most new Moms going out mere days after giving birth and being fitted for a nursing bra isn't high on their to-do lists. Therefore, if you feel you must buy a nursing bra now, choose one that is about a cup size bigger than what you're currently wearing. In the meantime, if your regular bras are feeling tight, buy a good maternity bra, preferably one without wiring. It may not make your girls the perkiest they've ever been, but the comfort and support should be perfect for this point in your pregnancy.