36 Weeks Pregnant

>> Thursday, November 5, 2009

Your Pregnancy: Week 36

With a mere 28 days to go (give or take a few), you're almost at the end—and the beginning of your new life. Finish up your final prep by stocking up on diapers, washing the onesies and making sure the nursery is good to go. Then, even if baby comes early, you're still ready. Of course, every new parent feels wildly unprepared regardless of how operational the nursery is, but at least you won't be diaperless!

What You're Thinking:

"One hundred bottles of milk on the wall, one hundred bottles of milk. Take one down, pass it around, 99 bottles of milk on the wall ..."

Your Body:

Just when you think you can't possibly stand another day of your baby kicking your lungs and crowding your stomach, your baby will drop it like it's hot. This process, called lightening, will probably make it easier for you to breathe, but with your baby's head resting directly on your bladder, you'll be breathing all the way to the bathroom.

When your baby drops, you can rest assured that your pregnancy journey will be over within the next few weeks. Make sure to know the many signs and symptoms of labor so that you won't be caught with your pants down (both figuratively and literally).

Your Baby:

Your baby continues to put on weight at about ½ pound each week. This layer of fat will help your baby regulate his body temperature after leaving your climate-controlled womb. In fact, your baby will be 15 percent fat at birth (and you ... well that's another story). Even in the womb, your baby can listen, feel, touch and see. The only thing separating him from living in the outside world is a little thing called the birth canal. Other highlights this week:

His gums are firm with ridges that look somewhat like teeth, though his actual pearly whites won't start breaking through until he's between three months and a year old.

Your baby has definite patterns of sleep and wakefulness—opening his eyes while awake and closing them while sleeping. Your baby will become alert and turn his head toward light and sound just as a newborn would—except when you put on that Celine Dion CD. Then the baby puts his hands up, turns away and gurgles, "Oh no you didn't!"

Your baby is now around 18½ inches long and nearly 6 pounds—just about as big as a breadbox!

Header image credit: adapted from sxc.hu by Celefinwe © Celefinwe 2009

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