If you are going to do a baby/mommy blog, there are going to be times when the content is disgusting. There is no other word to describe a mucus plug that doesn't belong to you. For the one that belongs to you, however, the mucus plug is a gorgeous, confusing, emotional sight, especially when it springs upon you unsuspecting at 5:50 a.m. when you are at the gym.
Let me back up.
Today I am 38 weeks pregnant. In some ways I cannot believe we are here already and in some ways it feels like forever since I could buy normal clothes and eat whatever I want without worrying about harming my precious fetus. There are starting to be signs of labor, including increasing Braxton Hicks and the 1 cm dilation and don't forget the jaw ache that feels most akin to having carpel tunnel syndrome in your jaw. If I was in slightly less pain I would make a witty sexual joke about what I have been doing with my mouth, but the pain is too high for a blow job joke. And that means the pain is HIGH.
And, the mood swings. They have been very intense. Yesterday, Jeff and I googled "being bitchy as a sign of labor" and found no conclusive reports about the correlation for increased bitchiness and impending labor. If that were the case, I realize, I probably would have had this baby around week 21. In light of my moody and depressive demeanor yesterday, I decided to start today with a rousing trip to the gym to get my endorphines going. I left the house at 5:45 and took M'lady for a leisurely pre-dawn cruise to the gym. Before starting my walk on the treadmill, I decided I would go to the bathroom one last time.
And there it was. The fabled mucus plug. I was so stunned that I just flushed the toilet and then sat there thinking about who to tell about this amazing piece of bodily discharge. I am dying to describe it-- as if I am the only woman who's ever been pregnant-- but suffice it to say that it's well-named. We'll leave it at that.
I decided I would just get on with my workout, but as soon as I got on the treadmill I wanted to know more. I opened the google application on my iPhone and tried to google "mucus plug and labor." Unfortunately for everyone around me at the gym, google was insisting I use the voice activated searching. I whispered, "mucus plug," but it didn't work. I tried a little louder, "mucus plug." Still, it wasn't registering over all the din in the workout room. Finally, I said as loud as I was willing, "MUCUS PLUG." That drew some stares and still didn't work so I ceased and desisted out of respect for early morning exercisers who may not actually be interested in what my body is passing.
Oh, but I am. As I sit here right now it's one of the top 10 moments of my life. I can't exactly say why other than this is all so surprising. I never know what's going to happen next. Am I dilated? Am I effaced? Is this mucus thing going to happen to me? Not every women gets to have this experience (and I am sure some are just fine missing this), but I want to experience everything. Every. Single. Bit. I was sad this didn't happen in my first pregnancy because I wanted to know what it felt like. Now I know. (It doesn't feel like anything really, but the emotional aftershocks have been tremendous for me.)
And, more confirmation that my body is doing it's thing. For all the years that I tried outsmart my body: "Oh, you're not hungry. Drink some water." Then there were the binging years, "Oh, you're still hungry. Have another box/carton/bag." I tried to tell my body about its own pleasure, despite the utter lack of response from my body: "Oh, you ARE attracted to him. He's nice. You like him." (Um, nevermind my body was not responding to nice guys for many years.) So many times I tried to out-think, out-smart and out-do my body, but she's in charge now. Nevermore so than right now.
It's fun. It's exhilerating to let go. All the squats in the world didn't really move my body at all, but now suddenly my mucus plug is gone. Just like that. I love it. I can trust it. And, it's also sort of disgusting, but at least it's all mine. It's natural. It's pre-labor.
When I finally was able to google what exactly this means for my labor I found out that it means I could have this baby anywhere from 1 hour to 1 month from now. Gee, thanks for narrowing it down. But, while curious about what's coming, I am content to know that the body is in charge and science can't tell me more right now than my body can. There's lots of surprises in store for us for the next few months. My prayer, other than health of my family, is to remain open and awake for all of it.