Today - at 37w3d - was a day of two 'lasts' - my last birthing class and my (presumably - if I'm not going to go past my due date) last OB checkup.
The last birthing class was a sort of déjà vu of the first one - I was together with someone for whom it was her first class, so for me it was just a recap of some exercises, which wasn't bad. The previous session we had last week was really more of a last class: with husband, working on the pushing techniques. But hey, I have a right to eight paid classes, so I took them all! :-)
Last week I also got the midwife with whom I did the classes to prepare the early release form from the hospital for after the birth. Normally in France you stay in the hospital for at least four days, but of course nowadays they're also interested in freeing up the rooms/beds, so they have an option to leave earlier (after 2-3 days - if the doctor's are OK with it) with a follow-up at home from an independent midwife. So you need to have this form filled out with you at delivery and then if you indeed want to leave early, you hand it in, if you change you mind and want to stay the normal period, you can do that too.
My 9-month check-up with the OB was this afternoon at the hospital. Everything was fine and the OB was very content. I told her that she scared me a bit three weeks ago, for which she apologized, but then I said it was also good that she had done it, because it had forced me to take it easier and now I just felt a lot better - so we had a laugh about that.
The stats: +1 kg since last check-up (so +11 since pre-pregnancy), BP 110.5/60, fundal height perfect (didn't get the measurement), baby's HB 140 bpm, presentation perfect (head down, already pretty low, head 'stuck' into my pelvis), cervix short and 1 cm dilated, so my body is definitely starting to prepare for the big day.
She had to redo the Group B strep test because she had not received the results from the one she did three weeks ago and the hospital admin staff couldn't seem to find it either (weird...). She also prescribed some 5 mg folic acid tablets to take with my iron supplements - she had just had a meeting in which they had discussed anemia in pregnant women and that taking folic acid apparently helps to absorb the iron better.
We also had a small conversation about maybe going to deliver at the 'pôle physiologique' of the hospital - meaning a more alternative / less restrictive / less medicated protocol - but she advised me against it. - at the regular delivery room, you can also opt not to take an epidural, deliver on your side (which I would like, because it's so much more comfy than on my back - other positions not allowed in this hospital) if you have a cooperative midwife, use the exercise ball etc etc and apparently some midwives put you in a 'special cases' box if you want opt for the 'pôle physiologique', and treat you like some alternative nutcase... If it would have been my second or third child, and if I would have been in my own country (with own language), she would have said to maybe give it a try, but not now. Of course I could have insisted, but it's not that important to me - I just need to make sure that as soon as we arrive in the hospital I'll tell the midwife that I want to deliver on my side, and that if she doens't like that idea, she gets me a colleague who is OK with that (I assume there will be more than one midwife on call...) and voice any other things I feel strongly about.