It is my lot in life to have overdue babies.
Sometimes it is a few days and sometimes almost two weeks. Whatever it is, my babies apparently like to stay snuggled inside of mama as long as humanly possible.
Take my last baby for instance. On the eve of his induction, at 41 weeks and 6 days, he finally decided it was an acceptable time to grace us with his presence. Thanks, son.
Needless to say, I have experience being “overdue.” Granted, I try to always think of my due date as a due range or a guess date–it’s better for my emotional health, especially in the third trimester. But still, waiting for the big day can be tough.
Fortunately, as I waited for my little one to be born this time around, a few friends said exactly the right things. They were words that brought me peace and patience, warmed my heart and offered true help in my final days of pregnancy.
If you know someone who is overdue, consider tossing one of these sentiments their way.
1. “We are lighting a candle for you.”
As my due date came and went, a dear friend texted me saying, “Every night, my girls and I light a candle for you knowing that you will be welcoming your baby soon.” It was such a sweet and thoughtful way to express their love and support.
2. “Can I bring you dinner before your baby comes?”
Meal trains and takeout delivery are popular ways to bless new parents but you know what is really appreciated? A meal before baby! The third trimester is a lot of work, truly exhausting, and having a meal during those final weeks is a wonderful gift–it allowed my husband and I to rest and relax before we plunged into caring for a new baby (again).
3. “Would your big kids like a play date tomorrow so you can relax?”
On the note of being exhausted during the third trimester, caring for soon-to-be big siblings when you are overdue is often overwhelming. They are experiencing big emotions and expecting parents often have a bit of guilt for bringing such a huge transition into the home.
Offer to take the big kids out to ice cream or welcome them for a playdate on one of those overdue dates! And never just say, “Let me know if you want the kids to come over …” Instead, throw out a specific day and time so you can make it happen.
Offer to take an overdue mom's big kids out to ice cream or welcome them for a playdate. Be sure to pick a specific date!
4. “You look beautiful.”
Pregnancy is a difficult time for so many mamas. Our bodies rapidly change, hormones run eschew, and clothing that fits is hit or miss.
But here’s the thing: growing a life is a beautiful experience and whether our hair looks luscious or our skin aglow, hearing that we look beautiful is always a welcome comment.
5. “You are so ready for this!”
Having a pre-labor cheerleader is a must. Tears flow often and strong once you are past your due date and getting the “You’ve got this!” cheers via text, social media meme, or in-person is essential to that overdue mama morale.
6. “I’m going to send you a surprise, be on the lookout.”
The days feel long when every morning you wake up thinking, “Today could be baby day.”
So surprise your overdue friend with something else to look forward to. Whether you send a bonus gift from her registry or opt for a new lip gloss, a surprise in the mail is always a welcome treat.
Surprise her with sending a special treat in the mail or arranging for a drop-off on her porch.
7. “A housecleaner is coming tomorrow.”
No one feels like deep cleaning when they’re overdue, and yet, every mama I have ever known really wants things to shine when baby finally arrives.
Rally a group of friends to pitch in a $20 or two and schedule a housecleaner to stop by. Then, while they clean, take your friend out on a “get labor going” walk and talk. Every mile counts!
8. “Trust your gut, because you’re already a great mom.”
When you are overdue you are faced with a lot of decisions. And all of it is mega emotional. Words of encouragement––rather than advice––are balm to a weary mama’s soul during the final countdown.
Go with sentiments such as, “Trust your gut, you’re already a great mom,” “You have a wise birth team, rely on their insight,”or “It is so obvious how much you love your baby.”
Always preface with “No need to text back, just know that …” That way you can continue to send daily encouragement without adding to the overwhelm.
In the end, the baby will make an appearance, we all know that. Pregnancy can’t last forever. But it sure as heck can feel that way, so if you can spread a little hope and cheer to an overdue mom, it will be much appreciated.
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