It’s time for a little personal update on how things are going with the pregnancy, as we head into the third trimester!
30 weeks pregnant? Wait a minute. How did that happen?!
Firstly, I genuinely can’t believe how fast time is going. It seems like only a few weeks ago that we were visiting the hospital for our 12-week scan. That was when things started to feel real. Now we’re ¾ of the way there! Time really is flying.
Our big day is mapped out for March 14th 2023, although I’ve heard that due dates are pretty unreliable. One book I’m reading suggests you should think of it more as a ‘due month’, so as not to freak out when you pass the date that’s been etched in your brain for the previous 8 or so months! All I can be certain of is that in under three months we’ll have our new arrival and our lives will have transformed forever.
So far, the pregnancy has gone pretty well and my energy levels have remained high. I still haven’t learned the art of napping, but I’ve not felt a huge need to nap either!
I’ve also enjoyed the process of being pregnant more than I expected to. I don’t know why I feared it so much, but I think there can be a bit of a negative around the concept of pregnancy. You know… morning sickness, waddling around with a huge uncomfortable bump, painful labours etc. Now I’m pregnant, I don’t think that reputation is justified at all.
The first question I get asked by most people at the moment is ‘how are you feeling?’ This isn’t asked in an upbeat tone of voice, but in more of a sympathetic, downbeat way. It’s as if they expect me to reel off how utterly dreadful it is to be pregnant. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all fun and games, but I think the media portrayal of awful bouts of morning sickness where women are vomiting all over themselves on the tube to work, aren’t what everyone experiences. (As an aside, sorry to one of my best friends who has gone through her fair share of that over the last few months!)
It’s a pretty crazy thing to watch the body you know transform before your very eyes. Each day I look at myself in the mirror and notice something new.
While my bump is obviously growing, I’m also spotting other changes. My boobs are growing, nipples darkening, and my skin is stretching. Thank god for Bio-Oil which I think is keeping the pesky stretch marks at bay!
These changes are all part of my body preparing for its new role. I’d thought I’d hate it. I’ve always been reasonably slender and active, but now I’m sporting this huge football and finding it harder to do some of the easiest of tasks (can someone come and help me tie my shoelaces please?!)
I’ve noticed a few great perks! My hair has got a little thicker and shinier. This is quite a common thing women remark upon during pregnancy, so I’m happy it’s happened to me! Sadly, I’ve also heard it’s common to lose hair after the birth. I’m praying that mine decides to stay attached! My skin has improved too. I used to suffer from occasional spots on my face, but right now I have smoother skin. I guess that so-called ‘pregnancy glow’ might be real after all!
I’ve absolutely loved feeling the baby’s kicks each day. They’re getting so strong now. At first it felt like such an odd sensation. The first few weeks it was only a light sensation, like little kernels of popcorn exploding. At 30 weeks pregnant it’s more like an alien inside me trying to wriggle its way out!
I absolutely love feeling him moving around. It’s a constant reassurance that he’s growing healthily in there. Macca and I have booked another scan next week (31 weeks) as we wanted to take one more look at him before the birth. It’ll be a 4D scan too, so we can see him moving around on the video screen! I can’t wait!
It’s also been amazing to share the feeling with others. Macca’s constantly touching the bump, chatting away to our little raver and playing him some of his favourite tunes! Over Christmas, all of my nieces absolutely loved trying to feel the taps on my tummy. Also, my mum felt him one morning and welled up straight away! It was very special.
He’s also going through a hiccupping phase. He seems to do it 2-3 times a day at the moment. It’s such a bizarre sensation when you feel that little rhythm, but all these little actions and movements make it feel real and help me connect with him.
I’ve painted quite a rosy picture so far, but I’d be lying if I said it’d all been plain sailing. I suffered from horrible bouts of nausea in months two and three. I switched my diet to really bland foods and loaded up on carbs. Jacket potatoes were my no.1, followed by toast with Marmite and salted crisps (oh, what a balanced diet that was!)
Once I hit the second trimester, I felt pretty well most of the time, and my appetite for a more varied cuisine came back. This was such a relief, as this was when we travelled to Greece, Italy and South Australia. We definitely feasted in all three countries!
The hardest things I’ve experienced have been migraines (particularly challenging when I’m not allowed to take heavy painkillers) and intermittent pregnancy insomnia.
I wrote a little about my battles with pregnancy insomnia here, which includes the names of a few products I found really helpful for relaxation. During months 4-6 I’d wake up at 3am and struggle to sleep again. Some nights I averaged just 1-2 hours. It was really challenging, particularly when I had several nights like that in a row. I struggled to function the next day and it affected my moods and motivation.
Now I’m into the third trimester, I’m finding the sleep-deprivation is coming and going. There are a few causes… some of it is classic insomnia (mind whirring in the middle of the night with all sorts of thoughts).
I’m also struggling to sleep due to needing the toilet more, because it’s harder to get comfortable with this big bump in the way, and partly because a certain someone has decided 3am is the ideal time for a dance party in my tummy!
One of the least helpful comments I’ve heard? “If you’re struggling with sleep now, just wait until he’s born!” Thankfully, a few mums have reassured me saying that while they also struggled with pregnancy insomnia, they actually slept a lot better post-birth. Also, many have said that they didn’t mind the sleep deprivation so much when it had a valid reason – e.g., to feed / change their baby!
The Next Few Months
It’s funny plotting out the next few months, with this big date of 14th March circled in red. Who knows when our little boy will choose to arrive! I mean… it could be a lot sooner!
We start Bump and Baby classes next week. This is a series of paid-for weekly classes, where we’ll learn some skills and information to help ease us into parenthood. The six classes cover a range of topics including labour and birth, looking after a baby, feeding and baby first aid.
It’s also an opportunity to meet other couples who live in our local area who are all due to give birth within the same few weeks as us. I’m hoping we discover some lovely local friends and have that support network which I’ve heard is so valuable in the early days. Fingers crossed for a new group of gal pals who I’ll meet for pram / coffee dates in the park! We’ll see!
I’ve been reading some useful books to help get into a positive mindset about the labour and birth. It all seems quite daunting, but the more I read, the better prepared I feel. Knowledge is power after all!
I’ve also been going to pregnancy yoga occasionally and I’ve found an excellent lady nearby who specialises in pregnancy massage. The yoga and massage definitely helps ease some of my pelvic pain, as well as aiding relaxation.
We have quite a few appointments from this stage onwards. The NHS appointments have been every 4 weeks so far, but they become more frequent as we near our due date.
We decided to wait until the new year to start getting our flat ready for the new arrival. Now 2023 is here, we’ll be sorting out things like prams, cots, nappies, clothes and more. Any tips or advice for amazing products? Let me know!
As for travel, we’re definitely easing into a nesting phase, but we’re still planning a few mini trips away. We managed to squeeze in a quick trip to The Cotswolds before Christmas, and we’re off on a little spa trip next week too. We’re also planning a UK baby-moon for the start of February!
We’ve also decided to splurge on a few bucket list experiences over the last few months, including tickets to see Hamilton, Cirque du Soleil and some special meals. Not only do we want to appreciate this special time together (our last months as a two!) but we know it’ll be tricky to do some of these things that we took for granted before.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this blog today! I started blogging to share my personal journey and views on the world. While my posts have mainly focused on travel over the past 7+ years, I’m keen to share some of this unique and special journey we’re on too. For anyone going through a similar stage, best of luck with the next chapter!