Luckily as I headed into 36 weeks of pregnancy, the flu I’d been suffering with started to ease – just in time for my last few days of work! But then we had another hurdle thrown at us – SUPER cold weather! Fortunately I didn’t really have to go out in it much, but the roads were super icy and the super brisk, meaning that getting into my car on a morning was a lot less fun. Pregnancy did help in one way with this though – I have my own personal radiator right now which means that I’m generally hot all the time right now, so while everyone else was shivering with heaters pointed at their desks, I was alright just with long sleeves on instead. It’s pretty unusual for me as I’m generally a cold person – in fact, I realised this week that my hands and feet hadn’t even gone numb from my Raynaud’s over this winter, and that’s usually a daily occurrence!
Thursday was my 36 week midwife appointment. I forgot to write about my last one at 34 weeks as it blended into the start of the my flu, but they’d mentioned then they weren’t quite sure what position she was laying in – she said hopefully head down but they weren’t definite. Luckily this time she showed me where her back was and said it felt a lot more like she was in the right place. It’s something I’ve been trying not to worry about, but it’s not easy! I got measured and weighed (for the first time in ages!) and we heard her heartbeat – this time though, it took a few seconds to find when it’s normally been immediate and my heart nearly stopped in that time. Fortunately she was right there and all healthy, just tucked away hiding!
Friday went from being just cold to being snowy! I had a health visitor visit in the morning at 9am, but she was over half an hour late because of the weather. It turned out she’d come from Ripon, where I was supposed to be heading off to work after the appointment, and it had taken her over an hour as opposed to around half an hour, so we decided it would be best for me to just work at home after the visit!
The visit itself was really good. I hadn’t realised that we would have a health visitor before the birth – I thought they just came afterwards – but I had a letter to book an appointment with them. Fortunately the lady was very lovely and friendly. I’d been more than a little bit nervous as I’d read tales of them checking the suitability of your house and whatnot, but, while I could tell she definitely glanced over the house as she came in, it wasn’t like that at all. We mostly talked about breastfeeding, mental health after birth, safe sleeping and activities for new mums and babies in the area. It was really helpful and not at all the stressful experience I’d been expecting.
That evening, Ben and I went out on a secret mission (possibly to be revealed soon!) that involved a lot of back roads, ice and snow – we probably shouldn’t have ventured out in it, but it did give me confidence that my new car is much better than my old one, so that was something!
Saturday was a SUPER fun day – my baby shower!! Two of best friends and my sister organised it, my mum hosted at her house, and it was just wonderful. A couple of friends sadly couldn’t make it, but it was a lovely group of all my best girls with lots of chats and snacks. My sister did an absolutely wonderful job of decorating with balloons, all my favourite sweets, banners and more. We had drinks in my parents’ BBQ cabin (cordial for me!) and played all the traditional games, including guessing the measurement of my bump (everyone bar one was WAY off – they all think I’m huge apparently!!), chocolate in nappies and who could dress a baby doll the quickest.
Instead of getting “showered” with gifts, I’d asked that people not bring anything except for their favourite childhood book – I didn’t want people to feel pressured into buying a fancy or expensive gift and stress over what we did and didn’t have, and this worked perfectly! We’ve now got a collection of gorgeous baby and children’s books (some signed with a note from the gift-giver) which I organised onto their shelves in the nursery when I got home that evening. I’m so excited to share these with her when she’s born!
On Sunday morning, Charley and Frankie popped in for a final visit before the big day as both were heading out of county again – it was a fleeting visit, but lovely to see them as always. That afternoon, we went to a charity event at a local Indian restaurant. It’s something our family friends are part of so we go every year, and I’d been worried I might not make this one! Fortunately I did and it was excellent! There were, of course, a lot of mentions of me being careful not to eat the spicy curries, and everyone went away complaining about how full they were…except me! Our table also did so well in the raffle that we had to give away some prizes!
Monday marked my second last day at work, so I got given a card from my team, Hannah gave me a surprise Lush shower bomb in Sleepy (my favourite scent!) as she’d spotted it online and thought I might need it soon! Tuesday was the very last day and it was SO weird. The thought of not being there for around 6 months is really throwing me off. As I mentioned in this post, I feel like it’s become a huge part of my identity and I’m not sure who I am without my work and Bronco team. There wasn’t a huge amount for me to do except for finish bits off and make sure everything was handed over to my team, so it was a strange day.
And the final day of 36 weeks pregnant, just before I reached full term, meant my first day of maternity leave! I have a huge list of box sets to get through on Netflix – I’ve been saving several up including Sex Education (which I’ve seen excellent reviews of), The Ted Bundy Tapes, Sabrina, Call the Midwife (which somehow I’ve never seen!), You and Gilmore Girls (another I haven’t seen!) – let me know if you have any more recommendations. But I also wanted to make sure I didn’t just sit on the sofa and do nothing too, so this first day, I made sure to get up, get dressed and get ready for the day with a proper breakfast, otherwise I knew I’d never do anything! It ended up being a busy day where I cleaned the kitchen, living room, dining room, tided the stairs, landing and spare room, then finished a book and started working on the blog admin I’ve been putting off for a thousand years. That evening, we made a fancy pasta for tea (it was supposed to be a celebratory start of maternity leave pie, but it turned out the pastry was kind of…dead for being in the freezer for too long!) then baked cinnamon rolls. These were SO good and worked excellently, so I’m planning to make more and hopefully share a recipe!
Now it’s just a waiting game – it could be any time between now and mid-March that she makes her appearance, so it’s just getting on with all the things I want to do on maternity leave and waiting!