Getting impatient? You’re definitely not alone. Roughly 10 to 15 percent of babies arrive not just past their due date, but after the 41st week of pregnancy. The percentage of the parents-to-be of those babies who end up tired, worn out, and bored by the end of those bonus weeks of pregnancy hasn’t been officially calculated, but it’s definitely high. One of the best ways to stave off that boredom, though, is to keep busy, and there are a few different ways expectant parents can keep busy while making sure they’re totally ready when their little ones decide it’s time to arrive.
Be a social butterfly
There’s a good chance that once Baby comes along, your time to hang out with friends and family will get a lot smaller, be limited to a lot earlier in the day, and get a lot louder as your meet-ups gain another, smaller, non-verbal head. Get your coffee dates – er, herbal tea dates – in while you can.
Read a book
If your reading material has been dominated by pregnancy and parenting books lately, maybe this unexpected extra time stuck on the end of your pregnancy is the right time to sneak in a little pleasure reading, in whatever form that takes for you – trashy novel, the latest best-seller, nonfiction about the secret life of bugs, or the episode summaries of that new Netflix series you’re trying to decide whether or not to watch. No one’s judging here.
Maybe you’ve already got a stockpile of breakfasts, lunches and dinners that your newly-slightly-larger family can enjoy while you get to know your newborn, but a few more can’t hurt. Even if motherhood somehow sets off a gourmet phase and you don’t end up using them in those first weeks, they’ll keep long enough in the freezer to be there for you when you inevitably have an off-day.
Avoid your phone
Sure, it’s possible that you’re one of those people who really enjoys fielding texts asking you if you’ve had the baby yet, but really, is it likely? When Baby is born, you’ll tell people. That doesn’t mean you’re contractually obligated to tell the same people every time they are not born.
Start a betting pool
If it works for the royal baby, why not for your little one, too? If you’re going to be overdue, why not get your partner, family, and friends to put some action on exactly how overdue you’re going to be? The day that Baby is born will be an exciting one for everyone close to you, but for one lucky person, it could be exciting and profitable. If your loved ones get really into it, there’s no reason to stop at the due date, either – there’s also the time of birth, Baby’s weight, and, if you haven’t found out yet, the sex.
Name the baby. Again.
Maybe you already have the perfect name picked out, but what if they come out, and you look deep in their eyes and realize they just don’t really look like a Reginald Leopold Algernon the third? Maybe it’s safest to have a backup plan.
Name other people’s babies
You never know – as you’re getting wheeled out of the hospital with your little bundle of joy in your arms, you might wheel right past a pair of soon-to-be preemie parents who are caught off-guard enough that they don’t have a name ready, and then you’ll be glad you paired three extra name-middle name combos while you were waiting.
Rename your pets
It’s not pretty, but if you’ve already got names on the brain, they’ve got to go somewhere, and surely the newly re-named Zabaglione will adjust quickly – he never really looked like a “Snowball” anyway. For clarity’s sake, though, hopefully you’ll give birth before you get to this point.