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You Gotta Rub Me the Right Way WEEK 27

Approved by the What’s Up Moms Medical Advisory Board

Baby is around 14 ¼ inches long now – the length of a drumstick – not the chicken kind but the kind that gets used on an actual drum. Here’s something cool: at the sound of familiar voices, your baby’s heart rate may decrease, indicating that she is calmed. So keep up that banter – babies love to be bathed in the sound of their parents’ voices (even when those voices are arguing about baby names).

As for you… you’ve made it to the last week of the 2nd trimester. Very big deal! These days, lower back pain may be intensifying thanks to the weight of your growing uterus. Some women feel it as general soreness while others get shooting pains (sciatica) down the legs – which is just as unpleasant as it sounds. This will resolve after delivery, but in the meantime, it helps to sleep on your side (pillows are everything), avoid laying on your back, and take warm baths for both the soothing heat and floating-ness. And treat yourself — or, better yet, be treated — to a prenatal massage or two as it’s such a good de-stresser for mind and body. Book a practitioner who’s experienced in prenatal massage as they’ll be conversant in your symptoms and do safe bodywork. Usually they’ll have you lay on your side, but some therapists have a table with a cut-out for the belly, allowing you to lay face down (bliss, how you’ve missed this position!).

To-do this week: Tend to some house tasks. You don’t need to babyproof until baby’s a few months old, but devote a weekend to some #adulting to-dos like installing/checking smoke detectors, putting a fire extinguisher in your kitchen and around your home, and replacing any broken furniture or fixtures. And then there’s the nursery, of course. Get those walls painted (paint should be water-based and zero VOC), assemble any furniture, and install window treatments. And don’t worry about getting it perfect – baby’s not picky.