As I suspected.
In the last week, things have felt “different”. I’ve had way more Braxton-Hicks contractions, sometimes coming in semi-regular waves. Also a lot more pressure in the nether regions – as in, yes, it’s possible to tell exactly where your cervix is, under certain conditions. Those conditions being: something is happening to it.
On Sunday night last week I was feeling so much pressure and a definite crampiness that I finally sat down and left Zach to his pizza making, and had a small glass of wine to see if that would calm things down. (Red wine is often recommended to calm an excitable uterus when it’s working too much too soon.) That helped and the sensations passed around bedtime.
Walking during my commute every day inspired strong Braxton-Hicks contractions, and every so often, more of that pressure.
All that activity led me to ask my midwife to check things out at my prenatal appointment Thursday night. Normally they would not check my cervix till my 36 week visit, but she humored me. Turns out, I’m almost 1 centimeter dilated (about the diameter of the inside of a Cherrio) and 40-50% effaced (which means the flattening of the cervix that must accompany dilation is nearly halfway accomplished). It’s not at all unusual for first time moms to have these changes well before labor begins, but for me, it does mean there’s a strong likilhood that Red Bean will come before his or her December 21st due date.
I’m under orders to “take it easy” for the next two weeks, which means nothing as severe as bed rest, just means no long walks, no sex, rest with my feet up in the evenings, stay hydrated and let this baby cook until after Thanksgiving.