Well, I had intended to write 3 parts to this blog post. Once per trimester. But, I got busy in the 2nd trimester, disappeared to the blog world, and here I am… at the end of the 3rd trimester. My baby is due in 9 days. So, I’ll tell you how it’s been for me over the last 6 months.
So, obviously I started showing. That was around 4 months along I’d say. Some people thought I was just getting a gut, but I suppose that’s something that most women go through. The first time that an inmate actually asked, I was about 5 months along. They asked how far along I was, and I just popped out with the answer! If you’ve read my first blog post, you’ll know that I don’t share information with inmates. I don’t want them to know anything about me. But there I was… just giving it all away! Now that I’m much further along, I don’t care if they know how far along I am… it’s obvious. But when this first time happened, I struggled with it for days. I felt like I was compromising myself in some way. It took me a few weeks to get over it. Especially because I had myself convinced that they were all going to be hounding me throughout the pregnancy. I’ll tell you now though… the subject came up about twice. There were a few comments here and there, but they pretty much didn’t say a word. A few have opened doors for me, or just gotten out of my way, but mostly – nothing. Boring – I know. LOL.
If you know me personally, this is classic Jen. I get myself all worked up over nothing. I develop plans and arguments in my own head, that aren’t even relevant. Does that make me crazy? Haha, I don’t know. I won’t bother going over that in my mind too.
So, around 5 months I started struggling with what you call ’round ligament pain’. This is a condition that is somewhat common in pregnancy, but not every woman has it as severe as I have. One day I woke up, and just couldn’t stand to be standing or walking for very long. I’d be standing at work, watching the inmates do their thing, and just grinding my teeth in searing pain. The pain starts in the groin and radiates right up into my right hip joint. If I don’t sit down soon, it starts BURNING. It’s crippling. This is due to the hormone called ‘relaxin’ that relaxes the ligaments in order to prepare you for child birth. It makes total sense, and is necessary. If you want to learn more, just google it. 🙂 The bottom line, is that it became dangerous for me to be standing along side my fellow officers.
This was the worst thing that I could have imagined, because I was determined that I could work to the end. Or at least longer than 5 months! Luckily, I worked in a great unit, and the guys were very understanding. They let me work in the control booth every day, which is usually a rotating position. In the control booth, you run the doors by touch screen, and are sitting for the majority of the day. This was a life saver, and I was able to do this for another 3 months. Everyone was so good to me, and I can’t thank them enough.
So, fast forward to 8 months.. wait… I haven’t said what we were having yet! We’re having a BOY!! His name will be Samuel, and we are so excited!
OK, now fast forward. I was able to limp my way into the unit until about 8 months along. And I literally mean LIMPING. My ligament pain had gotten so bad that I couldn’t walk for the 10-15 minutes without getting to the excruciating point. It got too hard to get from the parking lot to the unit. Isn’t that sad? It’s so sad. I had no idea that the reason pregnant women waddled, was because they were in so much pain. So, since I was unable to make it in to my work station, they had to put me in an office spot.
Again, if you know me, you know that I’m no office girl. I don’t like it. I like to be up, walking around, doing something. But, I am totally grateful to the prison for finding me something to do. I was safe, earning my wages, and not burning up all of my leave before the baby was born.
Now, I’ve been doing office work since 32 weeks. Last week (38 weeks) I started having a really rough time. My braxton hicks contractions have really increased, and my pace has really decreased. I would say that I shuffle, but I don’t walk. My body hurts, all the time. So, by Thursday, I just couldn’t take it anymore. I left work, and I told them that I wasn’t coming back until after the baby was born. My body quit working. My baby wants out (he told me).
In summary, I suppose I’ve had it all wrong. I thought things would go a certain way for me. In and out of prison, as a pregnant woman. I thought I’d retain many of my abilities, and I’d show everyone up. I thought the inmates would be nosier than they were. And I certainly didn’t think that there would be so many caring officers walking with us through this whole thing. Everyone has taken me by surprise, and it’s great. We’re so ready for this baby!
Thanks for reading this! We’ll keep you up to date on how our little man is!