Week 39: I'm almost done bakin'!
Fetal development in pregnancy week 39
20 in | 50 cm
7 lbs | 3.1 kg
Your rocket-baby may have already launched, but for those of you still waiting for the signal, it's just a matter of time before this entire situation gets rollin'!
You're all ready to have your sweet little bun's first birthday party, but are you prepared for their inability to communicate with anything other than crying?
Infants cry for several simple reasons, which any attentive mother can immediately recognize. Crying communicates that your infant is unhappy, scared, tense, frustrated, hungry, or uncomfortable and/or in pain.
Without language, an infant can only cry in order to let you know what negative feelings they're experiencing.
Take home-message: your infant's cries are always meaningful and should be attended to, if only by picking them up to let them know mama's here.
Even after your toddler learns to speak, whenever they're sick, hurting, frustrated, or otherwise being challenged beyond their developmental capacity, reverting to their first form of communication - crying, will be the normal response and nothing to penalize them for.
In the meantime, your tiny new infant will need very little beyond the strength and warmth of their mother's arms holding them... and of course, your life-giving immunity-boosting breast milk.
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Week 39 Calendar Girl
While you're in your antsy pre-birth limbo monitoring all your symptoms and feeling the size of an international airport, try to take some time to reflect on the world into which your highly sensitive, helpless and vulnerable infant will be born.
If you've got the nursery finished and you're all stocked up on newborn diapers, blankets, and onesies, you've finished the easy part. Soon, the real work of parenting will have you newly in love and sleep-deprived all at once.
In general, the first is the worst - the first month of breastfeeding and sleep deprivation, the first year of diapers, crying and immobility... as you get to know your child and your relationship deepens, you'll both grow together to a less sleep-deprived existence. The more support you have during the first months of your child's life, the better.
Thanks to breastfeeding increasing post-partum oxytocin (the love hormone), most women naturally delve into the nurturing behaviors of motherhood effortlessly, demonstrating an impressive capacity for loving personal sacrifice and patience for the sake of their tiny helpless babe.
That doesn't mean it's easy - it's not. Newborns are tiny sleep-destroying monkeys, but you've got mother nature on your side if you breastfeed.
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