Your Pregnancy: Week 27
As you approach the end of the second trimester, old feelings might resurface, such as anxiety and stress about the upcoming finale, as well as physical discomforts. You won’t be revisiting the vomiting again, but your growing size will most likely cause back pain, leg cramps and – once again – fatigue and frequent urination.
Speaking of stress, this is a common and serious feeling that should be managed now more than ever. Studies have shown that pregnancy ranks in the top 20 of life’s most stressful events, and stress may not be ideal for your baby. Find a technique that works for you – whether that’s taking walks, doing yoga or meditating.
Longing to connect with other moms-to-be? Connect with your fellow travelers on Being Pregnant and check out online social networks geared toward moms to share your concerns, celebrate milestones, and vent about your aches and pains.
If exercising is starting to get difficult, try a low-impact prenatal swim or water aerobics class.
Swap any toxic household cleaners with eco-friendly alternatives, like vinegar- and baking soda-based formulas.
This week, your little one weighs in at almost 2 pounds and is almost 15 inches long. Eyelashes are also starting to grow at the ends of the lids, and someone will be taking a first peek around this week, as baby’s eyelids flutter open for the first time. The eyelids won’t stay open for too long yet, but the blinking reflex will begin. More good news: Your baby probably recognizes the voice behind all those lullabies now, and he/she is falling in love just as fast as you are.
Advice from Dr. Shari E. Brasner
I’d rather err on the side of caution than endanger a pregnancy, so if your doctor’s gut instinct is to confine you to bed, well, then, stay in that bed. The Superwoman complex can lead to problems. Doctors are human, and it’s just possible that you could actually be persuasive enough to talk your doctor into changing his or her mind and allowing you to be up and about more than is good for you. In my opinion, the true Superwoman has enough wisdom to follow orders when a doctor says something might be brewing. Every day we can buy toward reaching full term saves two days that your baby would have spent in the intensive care unit. And if you think bed rest is tough, compared to visiting your baby in intensive care, it’s a piece of cake.”
Babble recommends Dr. Brasner’s pregnancy book, Advice from a Pregnant Obstetrician.
Mom-To-Mom Advice: Symbolic Fears
Pregnancy can be a minefield for the anxiety-prone and an introduction to anxiety for those who may have previously managed to avoid it. It doesn’t help that pregnancy and birth are so often discussed in terms of things that could go wrong. You need only to open a book, or glance at a pamphlet at a doctor’s office to come upon something scary enough to keep you up at night in a panic, even if there is a 1 in 50,000 chance of it happening. Fears in pregnancy do not necessarily correlate to actual risk or even to reality. If you do find yourself obsessing over something, you may want to look closely at it; the things we’re afraid of can help us understand ourselves as people and as future parents.
In many cases, anxieties are concrete representations of more abstract fears. An intense worry about autism, for example, may be sparked by the rise in diagnosed cases, but it also may be fed by the worry that you won’t be able to connect to your baby. Some women find themselves continuing to worry about things that have been ruled out by tests or things that aren’t even biologically possible. We know a woman who was scared stiff the baby would come out and it would be revealed that someone else was the father. She had never had sex with another man, yet she worried. This fear was probably rooted in her awareness of the huge commitment that parenting a child represents.
All of us experience some level of anxiety – it’s a part of the process of becoming a parent. We’re instinctually meant to be on guard and with a heightened awareness. But if you’re finding that your anxieties are starting to interfere with your functioning or that you are feeling obsessive about something in particular, it is a good idea to seek help. In many cases, talking about the worries can be a huge step to resolving them. Postpartum anxiety and OCD are not uncommon, so it’s extra important to get help if your anxiety begins to take over your day-to-day life.
Babble recommends From the Hips, by Rebecca Odes and Ceridwen Morris.