Pregnancy Diary Week 32: Leaking, Waters Breaking?
My Google search terms this week have been as follows: “waters breaking early”; “what does amniotic fluid smell like?”; “week 32 discharge”; “wet knickers in late pregnancy”. It turns out, my waters haven’t broken early and it is indeed quite normal to leak wee in late pregnancy. Oh good. Truth is, I have been a bit lax with my pelvic floor exercises over the last few weeks, and this is probably related. I thought I might be more horrified about this sudden lack of continence but as a second time parent to be, I’m pretty used to being covered in piss, and so have taken this with a pinch of salt. And let’s be honest, although pissing yourself isn’t the most socially acceptable of things, there are times in your life when it does happen. Fact. Childhood is one of those times of course. I know this only too well from my own child, but also from personal experience. When I was four, I cut open my Mum and Dad's old 1970s box sofa and crawled in to hide in an epic and elaborate hide and seek manoeuvre. The game went on for some time and I ended up pissing myself in there as it was too good a hiding place to leave and risk giving away. My parents were appropriately horrified. Livid does not even cover it. I think a mop and a bit of carpet cleaner did the trick and then my Mum made me sew up the back of the sofa as punishment. It was then positioned back to the wall as I did an awful job. We had that bloody sofa for years. Another time in life when continence is not at its peak is during the drinking years. Those heady days before children when you do fun things involving alcohol. Ah, happy times. Fortunately, I’ve only had one slip, which was partly due to drink, partly due to circumstance and partly due to negligence, possibly induced by drink. It was at Glastonbury festival in 2009. We had made our way to the very front of the Pyramid stage to watch Kasabian, which was quite an effort given the crowds. Of course we had been drinking for most of the day (i.e., all day) and made sure we were equipped with more liquid refreshments for our time penned in at the front as it was pretty impossible to get out. About half way through the set I started to need to wee but really didn’t want to miss anything. By the end of the set I was beyond busting, angrily aware of the men around me casually relieving themselves in bottles. Dicks (read that how you will). As the crowds dispersed, I made my way as quickly as I could to the nearest toilets in a legs half crossed, Monty Python ministry of silly walks style hobble. But the crowds were too slow for me. In an act of utter desperation I squatted by a fence, making my then boyfriend stand in front of me to provide some semblance of dignity amid the passers-by. It wasn’t big or clever and was of course strictly against festival piss policy, but I didn’t have a lot of choice by that point. Perhaps as expected, it turned out to be one of those explosive wees that being long overdue, fires out at scientifically impossible angles. Unfortunately one of those angles was at my own trousers. The other was straight at my boyfriend’s leg. Too busy being completely mortified by the whole situation, I wasn’t aware of this final horror and my boyfriend was gentleman enough not to tell me until the next day. Not that I think that was the moment we decided we were destined to be together, but he is now my husband and the father of my children. Clearly a keeper. Besides old age (which despite currently having the energy of a geriatric sloth, I’m not quite at yet), it turns out that pregnancy is the other time when pissing yourself may be on the cards. When the weight of a small bowling ball is persistently grinding into your pelvis, squashing your internal organs into places they shouldn’t be, it’s going to have repercussions on your continence. There are no two ways about it and quite frankly, I’m not going to feel bad about that. However, it is avoidable and with the aim of not smelling like a tramp’s undercrackers, I have vowed to do more pelvic floor exercises from now on. Don’t be a piss pants like me, get yourself to a pregnancy yoga class. Or if life is just too frantic right now, check out these brilliant classes online