Starting about a week ago, a few times a day, my entire abdomen would tighten up so much making it feel as hard as my forehead. I must be honest, it freaked me out. When I thought about contractions, I thought about the women in the movies who are doubled over, breathing heavily and sometimes cursing at their partners or whoever else is around. Yes, I had heard about Braxton Hicks contractions, but still thought that there would be some pain associated with them. While they are not painful, they are not the most comfortable. It only dawned on me in the last couple of days that this is what I must be experiencing.
So this morning, I'm having my usual spoon with Riley and Finn once Jenn had gotten up when my abdomen starts tightening up yet again. I try changing positions because that's what you're supposed to do when these things come on. I half sit up in bed and look down at my abdomen. The contraction had completely changed its shape, outlining little baby B's shape on my right side. My abdomen was totally lob-sided with the right side being much higher than the left. Does this make any sense? I wish I had taken a picture of it. It was the strangest looking thing.
So, I no longer worry about BH contractions and now know the difference:
- They happen infrequently (real contractions come at regular intervals)
- They cause a tightening of the whole abdomen (real contractions are usually felt lower down and into the legs and back)
- They are uncomfortable but not painful (real contractions cause increasing pain)
- They are usually alleviated by changing positions (real contractions don't care what position you are in, they keep going)
- Keeping very well hydrated keeps them to a minimum