Ringetsu = 臨月 - the last month of pregnancy
So according to my Ipod bump application, there are just 25 days left of my pregnancy! On the calendar, time is flying by, but it still feels as though I have an eternity to go until I meet my son!
In Japan, the last month of pregnancy is known as Ringetsu (臨月). It is officially the time from the first day of the 36th week, until the last day of the 39th week of pregnancy ( 36週0日から39週6日), otherwise known as the 10th month.
During this time, the baby`s weight should increase to between 2,700g and 3,400g with a length of between 48cm and 53cm. As of yesterday (my 36 week check-up at the hospital), my son`s weight is 2778g, so he is well on track!
During this time, the baby should `drop` into the position for birth. This means that there will be less pressure on the organs inside the mother`s body. More room for breathing!! Unfortunately this `drop` means more pressure on the pelvis and some mothers will start `waddling` instead of walking, and have more frequent trips to the toilet.
Although the 10th month is the hardest month of pregnancy, all the women I speak to (and read about) say that we should try to enjoy it. All the things we hate about being pregnant (the weight gain, the discomfort, the back-ache, the nausea, the tiredness...) will be gone before we know it, along with all the things we LOVE about being pregnant (feeling the baby`s kicks and flutters, growing a new life inside your body, the extra love, attention and care from friends and family...)!
On that note, here is my bump photo for this week...
Friday - week 36
I have started making a `Moment Garden` page for our son to track his progress and upload photos. This is a free website which allows the user to keep in touch with friends and family members on a personal level (with much more privacy than a Facebook page). The layout is simple and cute, and you can even have the information made into a real baby book! Such a neat idea :)
In other interesting baby-related news, during my 37th week (next week), my doctor has requested I take a non-stress test (NST = ノンストレステスト). This test takes from 30-40 minutes and is completely non-invasive (and poses no threat to the growing baby). With a belt around the mother`s stomach, its purpose is to check the baby`s heart rate and any contractions the mother may be experiencing.
In America (and other countries) this test is not performed on all mothers, but it seems that it is just one of the many many things that Japanese doctors prefer all pregnant women to do.