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After sticking out her tongue during her 5 month scan, I'm not sure why it even surprises me to have to write this about Olive, but she has earned herself a muttered "cheeky monkey" from the local midwife today.

Having had the usual chats and one the usual checks, the midwife wanted to have the usual feel and listen to make sure I hadn't swapped a baby for a litter of kittens since we last met.

"Hmmm, I think this baby is back to back"

"Yes she swings round to that position when I lean backwards, her sister did the same"

"Because there are limbs here, and limbs there, head down though which is good. I'll just have a quick listen"

"Oh good to know, because I've been belly mapping and I was a bit confused last week, her hiccoughs felt like they were above my belly button which made me wonder if she was breech"

"Mmm-hmm ... *mutter* ..."

"sigh ... *mutter* ... she's an active one this baby"

"yup, she's not a fan of being poked or prodded either"

"No I can tell! ... Cheeky MONKEY!"

How could she tell? Well because Olive kicked the wand clean off my belly every time the midwife tried to listen in on her ... and then would move just far enough to be out of reach. I tried really hard not to laugh.

In the end the only way she could find the heartbeat was to use what they call in boxing parlance, The Feint. Honestly, you could feel Olive sulking when she finally got caught: If a bump could exude an emotion, a sulk was definitely it.

In case I haven't spoken about Spinning Babies and belly mapping before, there's a handy printout here describing what to do.
I'm not saying it will stop you having a back to back labour, or that your breech baby will suddenly turn cephalic ... but at least you'll be forewarned!!

And maybe you too can make your friendly community midwife feel a little less amateurish when they come up against the fetal hybrid of Charlie Chaplin and Gnasher you happen to be growing.

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