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Pregnancy At Week 29

Pregnancy At Week 29

What’s happening with your baby?

By week 29 of pregnancy, your baby is about three pounds and is nearly 17 inches long. That’s about the size of a butternut squash. They are certainly growing (and no one knows that better than you and your poor back) but they will most likely double or even triple their weight in the next 11 weeks. So, buckle up and get ready for an even harder time getting out of bed! As your little babe fattens up they will be gaining white fat which will begin to smooth out their wrinkly skin. This white fat is different from the brown fat that was essential earlier in fetal development. Brown fat was necessary for temperature regulation, but white fat (which is what you have, mom) is actually a source of energy!

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    You might recall that your baby’s teeth buds formed weeks ago. This week actual permanent teeth will form in your baby’s gums. Now they’re all set for the dreaded days, weeks, and even months of teething! Oh, the joy of what those little chompers will do to both you and your baby’s sleep routine.

    Your baby’s muscles and lungs are continuing to develop and your baby’s head is growing bigger this week. They have to make room for an ever-growing brain. There is a lot changing and growing this trimester for your baby, so make sure that you’re eating well and getting enough calcium to support that important skeletal development.

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    What’s happening with your body?

    Your baby’s living quarters have become rather tight at this point, so the kicks and jabs you feel might be less erratic and may be less frequent. Your physician might ask you to do an exercise called kick counts a couple times a day in order to ensure that your baby is moving alright. If you experience prolonged periods of time when your baby doesn’t move, contact your doctor. Otherwise, relax either in a seated position or laying down and count the movements you feel. Once you get to ten, you’re good. If it’s been an hour and you haven’t gotten to ten yet, your baby might be taking a snooze, so you should have a light snack or a glass of orange juice and try again. The sugar rush should get them moving and grooving so you can count their kicks. If you have felt fewer than ten movements in two hours, then call your physician. Chances are that everything is just fine, but it’s always better to check.

    A pregnancy hormone called relaxin causes your muscles to relax — including your digestive tract. This can cause your system to get backed up and you can get constipated. You can help relieve your constipation by eating yogurt with certain probiotics in it, or just by taking probiotics. Probiotics aren’t generally the first thing prescribed, but they are accepted by a vast majority of the medical community as a natural, safe, and easy way to support good gut health. And when hemorrhoids are a common side-effect of constipation, you’ll want to do everything you can to alleviate it. If you do have hemorrhoids, they should clear up a few weeks after the baby is born. If they are itchy, painful, or uncomfortable, try soaking in a sitz bath and applying cold compresses that have witch hazel to the affected area.

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    What to do during week 29 of pregnancy

    It might seem early, but run some important errands now. If your nesting instincts haven’t kicked in yet, they will soon! Grab plenty of newborn diapers, wipes, a diaper disposal can, a baby thermometer, and nose suction. Also, get a few things for yourself. You’ll need sanitary pads (I recommend nighttime pads with wings) for after the birth. You will bleed for several weeks. You might want to stock up on thank you cards before you receive all of the gifts you’re bound to get. Your breasts might already be leaking colostrum (a golden liquid that babies drink in the first few days before your milk comes in). Even if they aren’t, stock up on breast pads now! You’re going to need plenty when your milk really comes in.

    It might seem silly to prepare things like this when you’ll likely have over two months left of pregnancy, but you can never truly plan when your baby will come. You don’t want to be caught without any essentials if you go into labor early or if you simply lose track of time and your due date is suddenly upon you. Plus, with all of those pregnancy hormones hijacking your brain, you can pretty much guarantee that you will forget something every time you run errands so it will take multiple outings to prepare just the very basic supplies! Get used to it! Running errands with a little baby is like navigating a live mine field while carrying an infant! You will beat a path to the store more times than you care to remember.

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    Featured photo credit: Ben Grey via flickr.com

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    Emily Myrin

    Copywriter

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    Published on January 30, 2019

    How to Support a Working Mother as a Working Father

    How to Support a Working Mother as a Working Father

    In roughly 60 percent of two-parent households with children under the age of 18, both parents work full time. But who takes time off work when the kids are sick in your house? And if you are a manager, how do you react when a man says he needs time to take his baby to the pediatrician?

    The sad truth is, the default in many companies and families is to value the man’s work over the woman’s—even when there is no significant difference in their professional obligations or compensation. This translates into stereotypes in the workplace that women are the primary caregivers, which can negatively impact women’s success on the job and their upward mobility.

    According to a Pew Research Center analysis of long-term time-use data (1965–2011), fathers in dual-income couples devote significantly less time than mothers do to child care.[1] Dads are doing more than twice as much housework as they used to (from an average of about four hours per week to about 10 hours), but there is still a significant imbalance.

    This is not just an issue between spouses; it’s a workplace culture issue. In many offices, it is still taboo for dads to openly express that they have family obligations that need their attention. In contrast, the assumption that moms will be on the front lines of any family crisis is one that runs deep.

    Consider an example from my company. A few years back, one of our team members joined us for an off-site meeting soon after returning from maternity leave. Not even two hours into her trip, her husband called to say that the baby had been crying nonstop. While there was little our colleague could practically do to help with the situation, this call was clearly unsettling, and the result was that her attention was divided for the rest of an important business dinner.

    This was her first night away since the baby’s birth, and I know that her spouse had already been on several business trips before this event. Yet, I doubt she called him during his conferences to ask child-care questions. Like so many moms everywhere, she was expected to figure things out on her own.

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    The numbers show that this story is far from the exception. In another Pew survey, 47 percent of dual-income parents agreed that the moms take on more of the work when a child gets sick.[2] In addition, 39 percent of working mothers said they had taken a significant amount of time off from work to care for their child compared to just 24 percent of working fathers. Mothers are also more likely than fathers (27 percent to 10 percent) to say they had quit their job at some point for family reasons.

    Before any amazing stay-at-home-dads post an angry rebuttal comment, I want to be very clear that I am not judging how families choose to divide and conquer their personal and professional responsibilities; that’s 100 percent their prerogative. Rather, I am taking aim at the culture of inequity that persists even when spouses have similar or identical professional responsibilities. This is an important issue for all of us because we are leaving untapped business and human potential on the table.

    What’s more, I think my fellow men can do a lot about this. For those out there who still privately think that being a good dad just means helping out mom, it’s time to man up. Stop expecting working partners—who have similar professional responsibilities—to bear the majority of the child-care responsibilities as well.

    Consider these ways to support your working spouse:

    1. Have higher expectations for yourself as a father; you are a parent, not a babysitter.

    Know who your pediatrician is and how to reach him or her. Have a back-up plan for transportation and emergency coverage.

    Don’t simply expect your partner to manage all these invisible tasks on her own. Parenting takes effort and preparation for the unexpected.

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    As in other areas of life, the way to build confidence is to learn by doing. Moms aren’t born knowing how to do this stuff any more than dads are.

    2. Treat your partner the way you’d want to be treated.

    I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard a man on a business trip say to his wife on a call something to the effect of, “I am in the middle of a meeting. What do you want me to do about it?”

    However, when the tables are turned, men often make that same call at the first sign of trouble.

    Distractions like this make it difficult to focus and engage with work, which perpetuates the stereotype that working moms aren’t sufficiently committed.

    When you’re in charge of the kids, do what she would do: Figure it out.

    3. When you need to take care of your kids, don’t make an excuse that revolves around your partner’s availability.

    This implies that the children are her first priority and your second.

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    I admit I have been guilty in the past of telling clients, “I have the kids today because my wife had something she could not move.” What I should have said was, “I’m taking care of my kids today.”

    Why is it so hard for men to admit they have personal responsibilities? Remember that you are setting an example for your sons and daughters, and do the right thing.

    4. As a manager, be supportive of both your male and female colleagues when unexpected situations arise at home.

    No one likes or wants disruptions, but life happens, and everyone will face a day when the troubling phone call comes from his sitter, her school nurse, or even elderly parents.

    Accommodating personal needs is not a sign of weakness as a leader. Employees will be more likely to do great work if they know that you care about their personal obligations and family—and show them that you care about your own.

    5. Don’t keep score or track time.

    At home, it’s juvenile to get into debates about who last changed a diaper or did the dishes; everyone needs to contribute, but the big picture is what matters. Is everyone healthy and getting enough sleep? Are you enjoying each other’s company?

    In business, too, avoid the trap of punching a clock. The focus should be on outcomes and performance rather than effort and inputs. That’s the way to maintain momentum toward overall goals.

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    The Bottom Line

    To be clear, I recognize that a great many working dads are doing a terrific job both on the home front and in their professional lives. My concern is that these standouts often aren’t visible to their colleagues; they intentionally or inadvertently let their work as parents fly under the radar. Dads need to be open and honest about family responsibilities to change perceptions in the workplace.

    The question “How do you balance it all?” should not be something that’s just asked of women. Frankly, no one can answer that question. Juggling a career and parental responsibilities is tough. At times, really tough.

    But it’s something that more parents should be doing together, as a team. This can be a real bonus for the couple relationship as well, because nothing gets in the way of good partnership faster than feelings of inequity.

    On the plus side, I can tell you that parenting skills really do get better with practice—and that’s great for people of both sexes. I think our cultural expectations that women are the “nurturers” and men are the “providers” needs to evolve. Expanding these definitions will open the doors to richer contributions from everyone, because women can and should be both—and so should men.

    Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

    Reference

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