It is the time to farewell the pregnancy, a time to reflect and let go!
It is the softening, taking up and early phase of the cervix opening.
It may take hours, days or even weeks!
- Varies from woman to woman and pregnancy to pregnancy and may include;
- Contractions regular – need to concentrate but not uncomfortable.
- A show (ie: mucous plug coming away)
- Wet undies (indicative of hindleak –where the baby has kicked a hole in the top of the bag of waters/membrane – if this occurs it can actually re-seal.)
- Burst of energy – needing to clean the house/nest.
- Strong contractions – 40 seconds long with a 5 minute gap
- Braxton-Hicks become more noticeable
- Backache coming and going with a 10-15min gap.
- Mild contractions with a 20min gap.
- Intermittent backache lasting 3 seconds with a 10 minute gap.
- ‘ouch’ with a contraction.
- Mild contraction 20-25 seconds with a 5 minute gap.
- Contractions 30 seconds long with a 10 minute gap.
- Contractions stop
- Waters break with a gush.
- For most it is period-pain like cramping.
- Contractions may stop and start and are usually irregular. It may bring up fears that haven’t been dealt with.
It is time to rest and store energy for the work ahead.
Support people: think of ways you can help mum do this.
(eg: massage, go for a walk with her, do the vacuuming, get her drinks, snacks, go to the movies, her to rest or just get on with normal life, etc but don’t put too much energy into this stage and you can prevent a lot of so-called ‘complications’.) This is really important!