Trying to Relax as the Waiting Continues...

So I've been on maternity leave almost two weeks now and still no baby! I thought for sure he would be here by now, mainly because I was sure my care providers would insist on inducing me by 39 weeks, like they did with Lila, as I have a history of hypertension. Wouldn't you know it, though, my blood pressure has been totally behaving itself this time around and I haven't had a single high reading this whole pregnancy. Which means right now we are doing things the old fashioned way...actually waiting for this baby boy to come on his own time! 

In the meantime, I have basically finished everything on my "to do" list and am trying to spend my time either with Lila, or sneaking in some rest and relaxation before my whole world is turned upside down.

One way I have been relaxing this week is by doing yoga. My friend Amy, who I toured with on Monty Python's "Spamalot", recently recorded a prenatal yoga DVD while she was expecting her second child, Clara. She sent me a copy, and although at 39 weeks I am a bit too big and a bit too tired to do the more challenging sections, I have really been enjoying some of the more slow-going parts of the practice.

The whole workout runs about an hour and consists of a warm-up, standing poses and then a relaxation section. I have really been enjoying the warm-up and wasn't until I did the warm-up that I realized how much tension I have been holding in my upper back and shoulders. It felt great to finally release some of that. I love that Amy points out some of the poses that can be beneficial in relieving pain and pressure in labor - for instance, Cat and Cow poses. I am storing that information in the back of my brain to pull it out when I might need it!

In the "extras" on the DVD are a couple of additional short workouts - a wall workout, chair workout and meditation. I did the chair workout for the first time yesterday and it is a great way to get in some stretching if you are in your office, or if you are like me and just need some added support while you move your body!

Amy is a really clear and concise instructor and has such a soothing way about her. I love her calming and centering presence - the way she urges you to focus not only on your baby, but also to pick a word or mantra to concentrate on. Her mantra is "trust" - trust yourself and your body - that it knows what to do to birth your baby. At 39 weeks pregnant, as I am waiting on pins and needles for labor, I really needed to hear that message. I was able to stop all the "what if's" going on in my brain and just settle into a place of trust.

The relaxation portion of the workout is really nice. I almost fell asleep! If you are like me, and you have a hard time slowing down and really taking time to rest, I recommend taking a few minutes to even do just this part of the workout. I really felt so much stress melt away and my brain stopped working on overdrive for a few minutes. 

If you are a mama-to-be, I highly recommend Amy's DVD, "Active Prenatal Yoga". You can purchase it directly from her website, "Exercising Balance", where she also has some other great resources, like her blog and some freezer meal ideas, and where you can sign up for her newsletter. 

Thanks so much, Amy, for the wonderful practice - it has been such a lifesaver this past week!