The last month of pregnancy really does drag on because I’ve mentally prepared myself for baby’s arrival and keep telling myself that it could be “any day now”, when in reality theres still weeks left. I get so excited for each and every appointment hoping for news that she’ll be coming sooner, but I know the longer she stays in, the healthier she will be. The whole 3rd trimester is basically just a waiting game with very few updates on baby.
HOWEVER- currently I have an official update as of my latest appointment. My doctor has decided that he doesn’t want me going past 40 weeks because of the two-vessel cord. SO unless I go into labor on my own beforehand, I’ll be induced to have our baby girl the day before her due date. I was really hoping to have her before Mother’s day, but at least I know for sure she will be here on May 15th, if not before.
Today’s post will focus on the last trimester of pregnancy, but also touch on my thoughts on pregnancy as a whole. Most of this blog will be a Question and Answer format- some of the questions I got from you guys on instagram. (Be sure to follow me there it is my favorite social media platform and we have a good time on stories.)
Third trimester bump photos from 28 weeks- until I end pregnancy at 39 weeks. Baby grew from the size of a pineapple to the size of a pumpkin! (There are a few weeks I didn’t take photos, but I’m impressed I got this many.) My bump really started to be visible around 30 weeks, and by 37 I didn’t think it could get any bigger!
Were there any complications during pregnancy?
As you may have read in a previous blog they found that the umbilical cord only has two vessels. This is actually pretty rare (only in 1% of pregnancies) and I don’t really fit into the demographic of women that get this problem- yet here I am anyways. Basically this means that baby only has one vein and one artery from the placenta which could risk poor growth. Because of this issue I’ve been doing extra ultrasounds and NST (non-stress test) to check to make sure she is hitting her marks. So far she has been great- she’s been right on the 50th percentile for all her numbers and seems to be growing just great. Honestly it is fun to be able to check in on her more often and I consider myself lucky to be able to hear her heart beat and get so many sonogram photos of her along the way.
How Covid-19 affected my pregnancy-
I actually already wrote a full blog about this, I’ll link the post HERE. Basically I had to make the hard choice to cancel both of baby showers to be able to social distance and keep everyone safe. I’ve had to mentally prepare myself to not get any visitors or additional help once baby is born too because we just really want to keep her safe from the virus. As I have been going to my weekly appointments I‘ve seen a subtle increase in precautions and security at the hospital. Little by little things would change like who was required to wear a mask, verbal screenings, they began to take your temperature when checking in, and eventually they made it so that all patients had to be escorted to different parts of the building. I still don’t know my full thoughts about it all. At first I thought it was all blown out of proportion, but now I guess it feels real and that I have the responsibility to take care of my baby. I would rather be overly precautious with all the silly rules to keep everyone safe than not take the suggested measures and have the chance of something bad happening to someone I love. It is a weird time we live in for sure.
How are your appointments and tests going?
I took the gestational diabetes sugary drink test around 28 weeks and it was no big deal- I actually liked the drink a little bit. My results came back negative thankfully so theres no need to worry there. One bummer is that I did test positive for GBS so I’ll need to be on an IV while birthing so that we can get some antibiotics to baby. Since about 31 weeks I’ve been doing the ultrasounds about 2x a month and the NSTs have been weekly just to check in on her growth. In my final ultrasound at 38 weeks baby measured 7lbs 9oz. I guess we will have to see how big she is when she’s born, I was a 9lb baby, so lets hope she’s not that big!
What is your nursery set up?
Eventually I’ll link nursery decorating blog (HERE) but it isn’t completely 100% done yet. Once it is, I’ll share photos of it and link some of the cute decor for you guys. I’m super proud of how it is turning out though, I think it is way cute and easy to transition into a little boys room if needed.
3rd trimester symptoms?
This trimester has probably been the worst of the three. That being said, I have had a pretty easy and painless pregnancy overall. This trimester I’ve felt a little bit of back pain but not bad enough to go to seek chiropractic treatments. I have actually thrown up more this trimester than any other- probably because my stomach is all squished and can’t hold food anymore. So I’d say the worst of my symptoms have been acid reflux and heartburn. I have felt a little sluggish and clumsy these past few weeks but taking an occasional afternoon nap has helped. I also seem to bump my tummy into everything- especially doorways. I really haven’t had much swelling except that I stopped wearing my wedding ring after 28 weeks, and switched to the silicone one so I can easily take it off. Around 36 weeks I started to wake up to sore knuckles and a little swelling on fingers, it isn’t very visible but I keep dropping everything.
Hardest part/ symptoms of pregnancy?
In my opinion the worst symptoms of my pregnancy has been a lack of energy and my hunger. I feel like I could be doing a lot more with my time right now but I know that I just need to take it easy and rest. I also don’t feel full anymore- like I could just keep eating until my stomach backs up and is overfull which is weird. Another really hard thing about this pregnancy is that my back has gotten a lot of acne and red bumps- some of it has been quite painful. I also had a problem most of my pregnancy with too much boogers/mucus in my nose which made it super hard to breathe especially at night.
Did you get stretch marks?
Yes. Unfortunately, I did get quite a few stretch marks through my pregnancy. The worst of them are on my thighs and inner legs. Weirdly I don’t have them on my tummy, so thats cool. I’m not too upset about having them, I know they’ll fade a little over time.
How much weight have you gained?
Yes, I know this is a vulnerable number to put online. I am doing this to record it for myself, but also to educate others about the realities of pregnancy. My own mind has been put at ease when talking to other women who’ve gone through this and also gained a significant amount of weight. You WILL gain weight in pregnancy and your body WILL change. Thankfully I was able to mostly keep in the headspace that my body has to change to create a healthy baby. Whenever I caught myself thinking sad thoughts about getting so big or weighing so much more than before- I would think about it as a sacrifice I’m making for my daughter and it always made it easier for me. So as I’m writing this I’ve gained 45lbs and my belly/fundal height is now 38in. This body seriously feels foreign to me at this point because I was fairly thin growing up and didn’t really have boobs until now. My body sags and sweats more than ever before but I also know that is part of the sacrifice I make to be a mother in this lifetime. If people love me it won’t be for my looks or body image- when I am able to begin working out again I’ll do that for myself to feel good, not for approval of others. I am excited to have my body back to myself for awhile though. One nice thing is that Sheldon and I were at the grocery store the other day and he said he didn’t recognize me for a minute because I don’t even look pregnant from behind! Maybe he was just being sweet though.
How are you sleeping?
This has been the worst trimester for sleep because I just can’t get comfortable. It was hard at the start of the trimester especially because I began snoring through the night. I know that affected sheldon so I would try really hard to notice it and change positions but I eventually figured out a pillow tower situation for comfort and easier breathing. Since then sleep has been a lot better. I usually have to go to wake up for a bathroom break 2 or 3 times a night which is so weird because I used to have the strongest bladder around! Haha. If nothing more I’ve been waking up feeling rested and that is what counts. Sometimes I even allow myself an afternoon nap which is so nice!
Have you had any new cravings?
Like I said earlier- I’m always hungry this trimester! Especially for breakfast I feel like a bottomless pit. I still don’t know that anything is specifically a pregnancy craving because they aren’t reoccurring and they are all things that I like anyway. Here are some things I’ve had a strong desire to consume… mozzarella sticks, a cherry slushy, grape soda, and all the chocolate ice cream. BUT similar to my first trimester I’ve been getting that bad aftertaste after eating– this time it didn’t make me lose my appetite though. I just chew gum more often.
Are you glad you learned the gender early?
We went to Fetal Fotos at 16 weeks I believe, and learned she’s a girl. I’m so glad that we found out early for my first baby so that I’ve been able to emotionally connect with her, dream about her future, and who she might be like as a person. It has also been nice to know what types of things to purchase for her and how to decorate the nursery. However, I think in the future I’ll wait to find out the gender in the full anatomy ultrasound at the hospital. Finding out so early was really fun because we could include my family in that step but it has made the pregnancy feel a little longer than I think it would have if we found out at the typical 21 weeks. I know theres always a chance that the ultrasounds could be wrong about the gender- but at this point where I’ve had so many I would honestly be SHOCKED if baby were a boy.
Do you plan to breastfeed?
Yes, I do. There are many benefits to it including the cost and being able to bond with baby. I know it can be hard, but I’ll definitely give it my all for a few months before we stop and change to formula.
What are some of your favorite things this trimester?
I actually bought some cute maternity tops rather than only wearing Sheldon’s large t-shirts. They were simple and inexpensive but they really helped to boost my confidence and feel cute along the way. This was my favorite thing ALL three trimesters- my aerie leggings (link) they are not maternity specific but they were breathable, comfortable, and would stretch with my growing belly. I wish that I would have bought them in all the colors! Other than some clothes I really didn’t buy anything pregnancy specific.
What things have you purchased for baby?
I think we are mostly all prepped to the best of my knowledge. Sending a huge thank you to our many friends and family those that purchased from our registry and sent thoughtful gifts even without a baby shower. I also ordered a bunch of things online since we can’t really shop around at the stores these days thankfully delivery makes that all so convenient.
What will her name be?
You guys are seriously so sneaky and are always searching for little clues about her name. Once she is born you guys will know! The reason we are keeping it a secret is because we want to make sure it is right for her once we meet her and also we don’t want her name to be negotiable- if you don’t like it we don’t want to hear it. We are pretty sure that it’s going to be her name though unless we get a strong impression otherwise- we even bought a sign with her name on it to hang above her crib. It’ll still be a secret for a few days BUT because you guys are so curious here is ONE clue… her first, middle, and last name each have the same amount of letters in them. Good luck with that one, haha.
What things have you done to prepare?
It is a good thing that I did the hospital classes early, because they cancelled the rest of them. I’ve been educating myself with different things like a podcast by Liesel Teen, and reading in different books, and reading the weekly updates on my pregnancy phone apps. Other things I’ve done to prepare this trimester include packing my hospital bag and diaper bag so they are ready to go. Like previously mentioned I’ve bought things online since it is hard to shop for baby during pandemic conditions. I’ve washed all her new toys, clothes, and blankets in things with soft baby detergent. We got a shampooer and have been cleaning everything possible including our cars. We’ve also been doing things to organize the house and yard (I guess you call this “nesting”) and installed the carseat and mirror into my car. Sheldon and I have also been taking the time to do simple little date nights (which usually includes take out food or evening walks) and enjoy our quiet time we still have together.
Did you take any maternity photos? Are you filming the birth?
I took little weekly updates of my bumps each Sunday (see above) just on my phone, but nothing too intense. Sheldon snapped a few simple maternity photos on Easter and mother’s day – but I didn’t hire a photographer due to social distancing restrictions. Actually I almost booked a videographer to film the birth, but thankfully I didn’t because the current hospital restrictions during this time won’t allow them to be in the building and I would have lost a deposit. Sheldon will have to be my support person AND photographer during her birth so I’ll be lucky with any photos that I get. We will make it work.
Are you SO DONE being pregnant?
First of all… this is an annoying question to be honest. (PS- do NOT ask an 8+ month pregnant momma this! haha) But thankfully for me the quarantine has limited this (and other similar questions such as “are you ready to pop?”) My response to this is that even though it is uncomfortable I can handle it physically. The hardest part now is that I am just so excited to meet my daughter and I feel like I’ve been waiting for so long already. I’m also fortunate that I’ve had an easy pregnancy; no morning sickness, minimal pain, and no reason to restrict normal activities.
Are you nervous to give birth?
Sheldon has asked if labor scares me. Honestly no. I feel like I’ve done enough reading and study on it at this point that I am fairly prepared. I know it’ll be super painful and emotional, unlike anything I’ve ever done before, but I’m really at peace about it. I keep thinking about all the millions of women that have done this throughout all the ages of time and all parts of the world. I am super lucky to be doing this in a day with modern medicine, technology, and experienced professionals that can help me through every step. Thankfully, I’m not the first to go through this, and my doctor has delivered over 2,000 babies. It’ll be hard but not impossible.
Are you ready to be a mom?
I think it is definitely the right time to become a mom. Sheldon and I have been married for 4 years now, so adding to our family at this time feels right for us. I’m looking forward to the toddler stage of her life because I think I’d have some fun and creative activities for her, but I know the newborn stage goes so quickly so I need to enjoy it. We are just a little worried of how fragile she will be in the beginning. I have always desired to be a mom though, I’m excited to have my little friend with me all the time and to help guide her through this life. I know the late nights, crying, and poopy diapers will get old, but I also know it’ll all be worth it. I’m excited to see her discover all the little things in this world and to take her on little adventures. I’m also just so excited to see Sheldon be a daddy to this little one, he is going to be so fun with her.
What are your final thoughts on pregnancy?
I’ll say it once more, I’ve been so lucky to have an easy pregnancy. I really didn’t sick at all and I’ve been pretty strong and capable of doing everything I wanted to do along the way. I don’t absolutely love what pregnancy has done to my body, but I think that mentally and emotionally I’ve been doing really well. I think that has been because my hormones are pretty balanced during it all. Being pregnant has given me a new perspective on life and has helped me to live with a greater sense of purpose. When we first found out it motivated me to work out and eat fairly healthy. I’ve learned to listen to my body, to slow down and notice little changes, and to do my own research. Pregnancy has honestly lifted my sense of spirituality a little bit too because I know that I am preparing to be a mother and need to be a good example to my little one. Being pregnant has made me more thoughtful towards others in the fact that I want to reach out and care for them- maybe a motherly instinct? Overall pregnancy has been a humbling and strengthening journey. I’ve learned a lot about myself but I’ve also learned to ask for help. It has been an almost spiritual process of sacrificing my own body, comfort, and looks to be able to bring another soul to the earth. It has given me some new excitement and perspective of the future and always looking forward to the next milestone. I have eagerly awaited each of my doctor appointments- longing to learn even just a little more about my child that is waiting in heaven. If pregnancy has affected me this much and brought Sheldon and I so much closer- I can only imagine what it’ll be like actually holding her and being her mom over the years. This may sound a little funny- but it is sort of like making this baby is a 9 month long DIY project to create our own one-of-a-kind little human. Overall I’ve enjoyed the process.
Thanks so much for following along with my pregnancy journey. We announced it back in November and it seems surreal to finally be giving birth this week! Thanks for all your support, we will be sure to share photos with you very soon!