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Daphne Metland: Emily, you're 30 weeks pregnant, and you've grown a lovely bump there. You're obviously growing a beautiful baby! Most women by now are finding it's really getting quite hard to go up and down stairs, and get in and out of chairs.
Emily: Yep, very difficult!
Daphne: Do you get much sympathy from your partner?
Emily: None at all. He seems to think it should be easy, but it's not!
Daphne: Ah! Most men are like that I'm afraid! But I've got a little exercise here that you can show him, which will actually convince him to be a bit more sympathetic, I think. I've got a pair of tights, or pantyhose, and I've tied some knots in the legs, and we're going to work on this bit, which is your middle, and we're just going to put in here all the weight you are carrying around inside you.
So obviously you've got a nice baby inside you, and this one is very lightweight, but the right shape for a baby, so we're going to pop that in there. And then to make up the weight we're going to ask the baby to hold on to some weights for us. Now most babies are 6 to 7 pounds, so we'll give this baby a couple of kilos, and another kilo. Now some babies weigh even more than that, so we'll pop another weight in there, to get a realistic full-term baby. And then we've got a placenta in there, so this cloth placenta and umbilical cord is the right shape and size, but it's not the right weight, so we're going to add a bit of weight. The placenta weighs about that much, and then you've got some amniotic fluid. Depending on the stage of pregnancy you're at, it might be one bottle worth or two bottles' worth, so we'll pop those in there.
And also the uterus has got stronger and bigger and more muscular, so we'll put some weight in for that as well. So all this is sitting inside you! And if I now stand up and hold that, you can just see how heavy that is. And we'll see if you can hold on to that weight – I'll give you a hand.
Daphne: So that's the weight you're carrying around inside you all the time.
Emily: It's very heavy.
Daphne: So the next time your partner is unsympathetic, you might want to get him to try holding that. The danger is that you carry it badly. But there's a lot you can do to help yourself to cope with all that weight. The easiest way to learn how to do that is to look at the pelvis and think about putting all the weight that's out here on your stomach muscles, and tipping it into your pelvis. So the bony pelvis takes the weight and you're over your center of gravity. And if you just put your hands on the big bones here, and imagine that you've got a tail, you really have got a tail there, so just tuck that tail in, and tilt your tummy. That really brings your weight back in. So let it go again, and then tuck it in again. Excellent.
And if you want to check that you're doing it properly, get your partner to put one hand on the top of your bump, and one hand in the small of your back. Tuck your tail in, and out again, and tuck your tail in. And his hands will move if you're doing it properly. Okay? So when you go home tonight, Emily, I want you to take this, and take it home and give it to your partner! And see if he would like to go to bed with all that weight on his tummy and then carry it around all the next day.