So you have joined the exclusive club that no one really wants to be a part of…The OVERDUE club. Most people know that a due date is just a guess and only 5% of babies are actually born on their estimated due date but that doesn’t make it any easier when your guess date (that you have spent the better part of the last year dreaming about) passes by! I unwillingly joined the overdue club twice, reaching 41+1 and a staggering 42+1 -the nerve of that little baby! (I was having a VBAC with less than two years between births so no one wanted to induce). The looks people will give you when they ask “when are you due” and you say “ two weeks ago..” , I swear people were ready to put me in their car and drive me to the hospital themselves. I became a mascot at my prenatal yoga class. It felt like everyone in that class went into labor early and people laughed every time I walked in and was STILL pregnant. The laughter was better then the collective gasp of pity when I strolled into class at 42 weeks STILL pregnant. Another fun fact, once you pass 41 weeks the pregnancy app on your phone stops telling you what vegetable your baby is the size of. This app assumes you forgot to input the birth date and congratulates you on a birth that hasn’t happened! Since I’m on the topic of pregnancy apps, if you’re overdue AVOID them! Once your due date passes it will seem like everyone is giving birth except you and this can really sting.
The second you reach full term at 37 weeks well-meaning friends, family and honestly random strangers start offering advice on how to get that little one out. As more time goes by the more you will be willing to try. I tried it all!!! I ate eggplant, spicy, pineapple, I swear to you I ate about 1000 dates; I exclusively sat on a birth ball…no, seriously, I don’t think I sat on a proper chair from 37 weeks on; I walked and walked and walked, and then I walked some more; I sat on a swing under a full moon (one of the more creative suggestions I got); If I never see a glass of RRL tea or EPO again it will be too soon. I literally did everything you can imagine and then some….and nothing. My advice ( like you need any more of that), is if you are having fun with these suggestions go ahead and try to bring on labour…but truthfully that baby is going to come when it’s ready so just try and relax and do things you actually want to be doing.
It can feel oddly lonely once you pass your due date. Anxiety of birthing a large baby or fears of post due date complications can creep in. People mean well but the barrage of texts, calls and Facebook messages can be overwhelming when you are STILL waiting. It’s easy to want to just stay home so you don’t have to field questions or suggestions, but sitting at home waiting is isolating and tends to make time move even slower. There really isn’t a right thing to say to someone who is overdue. So I will just say this, the seemingly endless waiting will eventually feel like a blip and although it may feel like you will be the first person to stay pregnant forever, you won’t, and someday you might be surprised how much you miss it.