When I would tell people that John and I had planned on passing the time of early labor by pumpkin carving, they would react in a way to convey that they thought I was completely insane. Pregnant woman full of baby contacting every so many minutes–not a person you want to see wielding a knife.
But one great suggestion I read was to have projects to keep me distracted and at home for as much of early labor as possible. Especially for first-timers, early labor can literally last for days (and still be perfectly normal), I believe on average 8-12 hours. Contractions can last as little as 15-30 seconds in length and be 5-30 minutes apart (again, gross generalizations). And then there’s the active labor part of stage one (before the actual pushing) that normally lasts 3-4 hours for first-time moms. So, I thought, I’ll cook, I’ll bake, I’ll carve pumpkins with the hubby, I’ll finish packing for the hospital, I’ll take a bath, I’ll read Harry Potter, I’ll take a walk, likely taking a break during contractions once they become intense…anything to keep me from showing up at the PETU (Perinatal Evaluation and Treatment Unit, a.k.a. the pregnant woman’s ER and check-in place during labor) too early, only to be sent home, as what happens to over 90% of first-timers.
And then there was the early labor that never was–both supremely lucky and terrifying. [I’m hoping to soon slap together my recollection of the birth day.] Such items as bras and pants didn’t even make it into the go-bag so, needless to say, our three little pumpkins did not get carved. We’re therefore hoping to enjoy this Halloween craft together when John gets home from work. Me thinks it will be more difficult to carve between feedings than between contractions.
The lantern above took me, mmm, maybe six hours to complete? This year’s model will be, must be much, much simpler.
Happy Halloween to you and yours!