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Rebecca Adlington’s pregnancy diary: Week 40

Becky and Harry

Rebecca Adlington keeps a diary for M&B throughout her pregnancy. Read Week 40: The double Olympic gold medallist swimmer is getting very, very impatient…

I’ve got a cold and I feel like sh*t. I’m fed up. I’m uncomfortable. And I can’t be bothered to do anything other than sit on the sofa. I wish pregnancy was only 36 weeks’ long. I felt fine at 36 weeks – everything was amazing – but then I went into this rubbish lethargic mode. Just getting up to the toilet is an effort. I’ve had enough. I just want it to end now.

I can’t be bothered to do anything other than sit on the sofa

The doctor said the baby’s head is down and her back’s towards my left side, which is a really good position. But she’s not engaged yet. I really, really hope I will know when labour starts. I want to get the feeling that ‘This. Is. It.’ But so many people have told me so many different things, I don’t know what to expect. One told me her waters broke an hour and a half before her contractions started, another that she didn’t even notice her waters breaking. In films a massive pool of water comes out and goes everywhere, but the midwife said it’s normally the smallest trickle. I just don’t know what to look out for.

I don’t know if I’ve had any Braxton Hicks contractions yet. I’ve been getting twinges at the bottom of my bump, like a stitch or a bit of period pain, but I don’t know if that’s a Braxton Hicks or something else. Whenever I feel a tiny movement that’s a tiny bit different, it stops me in my tracks, but then I think, ‘no, that was nothing’. Not that I’m on edge about it – I’m only wondering if it’s normal. I just don’t know! For a few days, my bump kept jumping up and down and I thought ‘what is going on?’ But then I figured it out and I was like, ‘Harry, she’s got hiccups!’

It’s hard not knowing. Harry and I are both athletes and we like to prepare, get organised, be in control. But I don’t know how long we’ll be in hospital or what’s going to happen. Harry keeps asking me questions and I’m like, ‘I just don’t know babe.’

I’m not a drama queen and I won’t be yelling, ‘Babe! It’s started! I’m in labour! Get the bag!’ 

I don’t think I’ll panic when labour starts. I’m not a drama queen and I won’t be yelling, ‘Babe! It’s started! I’m in labour! Get the bag!’ We’ll message our parents but Harry and I are going to manage this one by ourselves. Harry’s going to be great. He knows that I go into my own zone when I’m dealing with something. I won’t want a midwife telling me, ‘Come on, you can do it,’ and being all mumsy. I’ll need to focus in my own space. And he’ll make sure that happens. He’s great at getting me to focus not on what’s happening right now, but the bigger purpose of why it’s happening. 

He keeps threatening me that he’s going to film the birth

Harry absolutely loves blood and gore too, so he’ll be all ‘Let me see! Let me see!’ He’s planning to cut the cord. He keeps threatening me that he’s going to film the birth. I’ve warned him that if he comes anywhere near me with a camera I’ll smash it against the wall. A photo afterwards is fine – but not during!

I’ve been told that being fit, and having good core muscle strength, will help with the pushing. I trust my body completely. And athletes are very good at switching off and relaxing – you have to be able to go into recovery mode to preserve your energy and save it for when you need it. That’s got to help, surely?

Everyone’s got an opinion but I’ve done a lot of research and I know for myself what I want

I’m happy with my birthplan. I’m going in with the mind to have gas and air but if I need more pain relief, I not saying no. Everyone’s got an opinion but I’ve done a lot of research and I know for myself what I want. My mum is like, ‘well, I did this’ and ‘I did that’. But I’m like, ‘Mum, that was 26 years ago! 

But I just hope it happens soon. When I’m out, people say, ‘Ooh, you’ve not popped yet?’ and I’m like, ‘No! Of course not! You can see the bump and I’ve not got a baby!’ But it’s good to know that this waiting can’t go on forever. Hopefully my cold will go. My nose is so bunged up I can’t even practise my breathing!

Watch Becky’s video blog at rebeccaadlington.co.uk

 
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