The little one in your belly isn’t quite so little anymore. With the lack of space, you’ll find their movements are not as forceful as before. Still, they will continue to kick, elbow or move their head to show they are still there. The subcutaneous peach fuzz that was covering their skin, the lanugo, has come off while the waxy vernix coating gets a little thicker. Patience, they’re getting ready to meet you soon!
At 37 weeks, your baby is around the size of a kent pumpkin and their movement will be a little less strong now that they've almost run out of room in the womb.
With a couple more weeks to go, you may be feeling both excited and apprehensive. Who wouldn’t be?!
Still, try to stay as relaxed as you can so you can give birth in a calm state of mind. Keep doing your regular relaxation and breathing exercises. If you feel a wave of contractions, look calmly at your watch, lie down and relax, breathing deeply and regularly. The contractions will then subside. When they come back, look at your watch again. If they become regular, too painful to manage on your own at home, or if your water breaks, then it's time to go to the hospital. Can you believe how close you are to becoming a mum? Or, if this isn’t your first, to having another little one?!
You may have heard that during pregnancy, women need much more than before they were pregnant. For example, if you started your pregnancy at a healthy weight, your protein needs increase from about 46g to about 60g per day. An extra 14g protein is not as much as it sounds. By eating a slightly bigger portion of protein rich foods from your regular meals, you are likely to hit the mark. A 65g extra helping of meat, fish, or poultry provides about 15g of protein. One egg has about 7g of protein, and a 30g portion of cheese or 250ml glass of milk each has 9-10g. All of these sources of protein contain the essential amino acids that you and your growing baby need.
Not sure who to have in the room during the baby’s birth? Apart from your partner, it may be your mum, a close friend, a sister? If you are unsure, then perhaps you can clear up a few things in your own mind before deciding how you want to play it with everyone else. Talk openly to your partner about expectations and fears. Then make a joint decision. Try not to put either yourself or your partner under pressure. This is meant to be joyful.