Preparing For Labour

Mr Infrastructure goes back to work tomorrow and I am happy to say that with his help I am feeling very well rested. I love Christmas and visiting my family in Mildura, but it is busy and then a 6.5 hour car ride at the end stage of pregnancy, in a cramped hire car is not the most relaxing thing to experience! (Image by Leni Rachael)

Since we have been back in Melbourne I have been going to bed before 10.30pm and taking afternoon naps. We were also very lucky and my older sister took all four children over night and for most of the next day recently. This allowed Mr I and myself to work through some things around the house uninterrupted – meaning that they were done in half the time.

Thinking about Mr I going back to work made me think about how I need to retain this state of feeling well rested in the lead up to labour. I always tend to eat well, exercise and drinks lots of water, but it is somewhat of a in built characteristic of mine to push myself to fit everything in.

I have been fortunate that none of my labours to date have been of marathon length, but regardless of the duration of labour, it is physically demanding and for me to be able to cope to the best of my ability, I cannot start the birth process tired. So this will require some self discipline from myself and support and monitoring from Mr I (which he has gladly committed to as he always thinks I do too much!).

In reality this will mean that in preparing for labour I will:

  1. Only be posting on the blog three times a week – Mon, Tue and Thu. This will continue for a little while after the beautiful baby is born as well.
  2. Start preparing to go to bed at 10.00pm. I have been aiming for 10.30pm all pregnancy but rarely make it, inevitably because I work right up until 10.29pm on the computer!
  3. Organising the children’s activities so that there is a day of rest between major activities. We will be going into the city on the train one day next week, so I will make sure that the day before and after are more home based days.
  4. Keeping meals simple. I have had a mammoth menu planning session, which I will go through in more detail in another post, but the focus on the family meals over the next month or so is healthy and simple, so that I do not have to spend too much time preparing meals.
  5. Complete back to school preparations. This is a mental thing for me. I don’t want to worry about what the children do and don’t have (eg new school shoes, uniforms etc). I want to have crossed this item of my to do list well before labour starts.
  6. Enjoy spending time playing with the kids. Whilst this is something that I always do, during school holidays I like to commit to special time with the kids every day. I wrote about this last January in Planning Time To Stop And Play.
  7. On the personal appearance side of things I have already has my eyelashes tinted, eyebrows waxed, had a haircut and taken care of other unwanted hairs! I think it is important to go into labour feeling good about yourself.
  8. Refresh on natural techniques to cope with labour. Although I have been through the birth process a few times now, none of my labours have been identical. I have started reading over literature that I have gathered over the years and practising breathing techniques and active movement strategies.

    I have found being active in labour and focusing on my breathing has worked incredibly well for me. If you are interested in this and live in Melbourne, I can highly recommend attending the Birthwise classes at Fitwise Physiotherapy. They also have fantastic ante and post natal exercise classes. Logistically it is too difficult for me to get to East Melbourne now to attend these classes, but I did so for my first three pregnancies and found them to be not only a great source of exercise, but the physios provide so much information on pregnancy and birth that was incredibly helpful.

With two weeks to until official due date, it is just a matter of waiting for labour to start now!