How your baby's growing: Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. He now weighs almost 6 pounds (like a crenshaw melon) and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. He's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered his body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected his skin during his nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture, called meconium, will form the contents of his first bowel movement.
At the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. (Full-term is 37 to 42 weeks; babies born before 37 weeks are pre-term and those born after 42 are post-term.) Most likely he's in a head-down position. But if he isn't, your practitioner may suggest scheduling an "external cephalic version," which is a fancy way of saying he'll try to coax your baby into a head-down position by manipulating him from the outside of your belly.
Yay! 36 weeks! I am SO happy to have made it this far. I feel really good that if Asher makes his appearance now he'll be healthy and strong. If I go one more week, he'll be full term! How great is that? The past few days I've had more cramps and contractions. Last night I even thought we might have to go to the hospital. I was having strongish contractions under 10 minutes apart. We cleaned and called our neighbors in case we had to leave in the middle of the night. But things calmed down I was sound asleep by 10:15. Today I have not had as many contractions. It does seem that my body is slowly gearing up though. It will be interesting to see how long active labor lasts since I've had so long of a warm up.
I go to the doctor tomorrow and should get orders to resume all normal activity. I'm really excited to take a long walk and do some yoga. Asher's car seat also should arrive tomorrow too, which means he can come since now we'll have a way to get him home. :-)