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The Impatient Woman’s Summary of Googleable Information on Early Labor Signs

impatient pregnant womanEditor’s Note: We’re so excited to have blogger Jordan Reid and illustrator Erin Williams guest posting for us today. If you love their humor like we do, then check out their new book, “The Big Fat Activity Book for Pregnant People.” Better yet, join us at our BLOOM event on May 7th to pick up your FREE copy, as well as tons of other goodies. Then, go buy more copies of their book for your girlfriends, so they don’t try to borrow yours. Get your BLOOM tix here.

We’ve all been there. You’re late in your third trimester, and you desperately want to meet the little nugget who shares half your DNA and won’t stop kicking you in the ribs. And so every time you feel a cramp, wiggle, or jiggle you ask yourself, “Was that something?!”

You run to the bathroom to check your giant underthings for gross stuff. You can recite the dictionary definition of “Braxton Hicks.” You don’t even need to have your doctor on speed dial, because his phone number (and extension, and the number that you’re “only supposed to call in case of an actual emergency”) have been burned into your long- term memory.

You will google; it’s inevitable. We don’t care how strong you think you are against its deep, dark powers. Here’s what you will find when you succumb to Google’s clutches:

1. If you’re between 38–42 weeks pregnant, you will probably go into labor soon.

2. Your water may break before active labor, but it probably won’t.

3. You may or may not noticeably discharge something attractively called a “mucous plug” or a “bloody show” into your large lady underpants. This may mean that labor is coming in the next twenty-four hours, but it could also mean that it’s weeks away.

4. An internal exam can reveal how far along you’re dilated and effaced, but the information will be entirely unhelpful in terms of predicting when you’ll go into labor.

5. You will almost surely not give birth on your due date, so don’t expect to (unless you’re having a scheduled C-section). About fifty percent of women give birth before their due date. The other fifty percent give birth after.

6. Your baby may or may not “drop” days, weeks, or hours before you go into labor. This does not help to predict the timeline but does help you breathe again. You can use all that air to help lug yourself to the bathroom, because you’ll have to pee every five minutes.

7. If you have diarrhea, nausea, an achy pelvis, insomnia, and/or painful Braxton Hicks contractions while walking around town, congratulations, you are pregnant. At some point, you will likely give birth.

Your chances of discovering a buried prophetic GeoCities deep in the trenches of an anonymous What to Expect forum that tells you the exact date and time your bundle will make his or her appearance are slim to none (we know, we’ve looked).

Maybe take up knitting?

Erin Williams & Jordan Reid

JORDAN REID is the founding editor of the lifestyle blog Ramshackle Glam and the author of two parenting and style memoirs. Her hobbies include unfortunately timed blushing, coming up with reasons to not shave her legs, and darts. She lives in California with her husband and two children, mostly so that she can wear flip-flops in the winter. 

ERIN WILLIAMS is a writer, illustrator, and semiprofessional ugly-crafter living in New York with her husband and child. She moonlights (works full time) as an Oncology Data Specialist at Flatiron Health. If she had free time, she would use it to watch crime shows and guess who the perp was with stunning accuracy before the reveal.

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