Like all of us, babies are individuals who have their own pace. When we talk about the due date or estimated date of delivery it really upsets me. We're putting pressure on a tiny baby before they've even entered the world and they will have plenty of opportunity to feel pressure later in life.
Due dates, in my opionon are the dates you will have with yourself and your partner until your baby is ready to be born and the delicious dates you will eat in the days before labor.
Try your best not to limit your baby to a specific date. I find it best not to give a "due date or Estimated date of delivery" when speaking to family and friends.
"my baby will arrive sometime in may!" Imagine a stork is bringing the baby, they might get lost, have bad weather or stop off for a snack. These aren't amazon prime packages you can track, they have a mind of their own.
So from now try to use a general time frame or month rather than date.
These estimated dates are for us, your midwives and doctors to use as a rough gauge. They are based on a very old method that requires all women all over the world to have a regular cycle of 28 days in order for it to be used accurately, and many of us don't have a 28 day cycle! Many of us don't realise that lots of things can alter your mentrual cycle such as stress, medication, night shifts or travel! So on reflection, how useful a tool is it really?
You may think, my baby will come early, I'm sure of it. (I definitely did! I'd set up the birthing pool a whole month before my daughter was actually born, which was 14 days after her due date. But she came, healthy and not over cooked or underdone, she was perfect and safe and ready for the world. Even with my son, I thought, this time! This baby will be early! Wrong again, he was 12 days late and ready when he was ready!
Patience is something that we all need to re learn. Having patience with yourself as parents and with your child.
Babies have much more time than they are very often given. In Germany we can wait 14 days after the estimated day of delivery before intervention. Take. Your. Time. It's possible that at day 10, your midwife or doctor will suggest beginning intervention, but you may still wait if you, your baby and your placenta are still working well togther.
Try to trust that your body is absolutely perfect and your baby will know when it's time to go!
No preparation is needed for a healthy mum and a healthy babe. That's right...No preparation! No tea, no massage, no medicine. Remember, there's no magic tea and if there was one we'd be telling you to drink it!
The secret is to enjoy every day you have without your baby rather than desperately waiting for them to be born.
Rest, connect with your partner, cuddle, go on dates, go to the cinema. Do nice things! And if you feel like it, eat some dates…(not because you can't manage without dates, but because they're delicious and full of good stuff.)
Set expectations to not have expectations!
Trust your baby and your body, and surrender to their timing.