What to do past your due date
Getting to forty weeks with no imminent sign of baby can be understandably frustrating. Although you look blooming to everyone else, it can seem like you’ve been pregnant forever and it becomes a case of playing the waiting game. Here are our top nine tips for how to avoid boredom, encourage the baby along and activities to help pass the time.
Whenever we ask our interviewees what they miss when pregnant, there’s never a pause. Even if it’s nine joyous months, there are still times you miss something; be it a dirty martini, or indulging in a sashimi platter. Spend this time making a list of things you’re looking forward to doing when baby comes, such as fitting back into your favourite dress or even something as simple as seeing your toes again.
Walking is a time-honoured way to induce labour and it’s good to keep busy and get outside. Staying upright can help to move baby along and into the right position, so use this opportunity to check out some rambling countryside near you, that perhaps you haven’t been to before. But make sure you take someone with you, keep your phone charged and don’t stray too far from civilisation!
If you’re going to be waiting, you might as well be eating delicious food while doing so. Use this time to cook new recipes and freeze some meals for when your little one is born – as you won’t want to spend time cooking then. Try out the perfect Instagram-worthy cake that you keep seeing but didn’t have time to recreate. Or, cook an ultra-spicy curry; because, as unglamourous as it sounds, clearing the bowels can help jump-start labour. Swot up on our latest reading list for easy, healthy recipes here.
Even if they’re driving you mad by this stage, spending time with your partner is of key importance now – when baby arrives, there’ll be much less opportunity for ‘you’ time. Try out new restaurants, go for a themed night or simply host an indoor dinner date at home with candles and old-fashioned movies. And if you really want to help the baby along, then we all know the most commonly known method…!
Raspberry leaf tea is said to activate your uterine muscles, being rich in nutrients and a substance called fragine. Drinking it during and after labour may also help reduce bleeding, help with milk let-down and uterus shrinking. But, the drawback is that you would need to drink quite a few cups – and in some cases, this should be avoided. Check with your midwife and if they give you the go ahead, whittle away some time filling up that kettle. P.S It’s not that tasty…so maybe alternate it with the cake that you made.
Even when you make it to go-time, there’s often still hours to wait. So use your time at home to compile a playlist that you’ll want to listen to during labour. Whether you’re after soothing, hypnotic songs and podcasts or upbeat tones to keep your mental energy high, having one ready can make you feel at ease when the time comes.
You know those films that everyone else has seen but you never have? Well now’s the time! Catch up on classics such as ‘The Breakfast Club’ and ‘Casablanca’, read the book version of popular films or binge-watch that boxset people rave about. Anything you can do lying down has got to be a good idea and if you don’t take this opportunity to watch ‘Pretty Woman’ for the thousandth time, then you’re making a BIG mistake. Huge!
Sleep is essential right now – you need as much of it as possible. You will find it hard to sleep for long stretches but in smaller stints it will do wonders for your energy levels later on. If you can’t catch your forty winks, read our article on how to sleep like a baby here and try out some new snoozing methods that you’ll be given the opportunity to test out once baby is born!
With time on your hands, now is the perfect time to make sure you have everything you need for baby and you post-birth. Make sure to relax about it though; nesting is an important instinct in helping you prepare for a baby but no matter how organised you are, the arrival of a newborn always causes upheaval. If you want to check for the hundredth-and-one time, there’s always our list of what you need to have before baby comes. Read more here.
Words by Katie Stalker
Photo courtesy of @masha_theone