36 WEEKS

How far along? 36 weeks 1 day.
Total weight gain: Almost 16 kilos now! I can’t believe the baby alone weighs so much at this point.
Maternity clothes? Obviously.
Stretch marks? None.
Sleep: Good, better than usual actually – only peeing once a night! WTF?!
Best moment last week: None – I was sick with a terrible cold and ear/sinus infection for the past 2 weeks :(
Miss Anything? EVERYTHING. I’ve hit the “over it” point of pregnancy everyone speaks of.
Movement: Same old :)
Food cravings: Nope. Been off food actually…
Anything making you queasy or sick: No.
Gender: Feeling nothing again! Was boy in early pregnancy and then nothing and then from 30 weeks I felt girl very strongly and now nothing!
Labor Signs: Lots of new stuff has been happening. But early labour can go on for WEEKS!
Symptoms: I don’t even know where to start lol. My SPD is really bad, crappy pain :(
Belly Button in or out? Still in. Fingers crossed it stays in… it’s almost flat though!
Wedding rings on or off? Off.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy and excited now… eek!
Looking forward to: Our hospital appointment this Wednesday. I have a check up plus a meet and great with the other midwives who are on my caseload.

34 WEEKS

How far along? 34 weeks 3 days.
Total weight gain: Unsure so we’ll say the same as last week – 13kgs.
Maternity clothes? Obviously.
Stretch marks? None.
Sleep: Good still – I love my sleep :) Waking up covered in sweat and dreaming vividly still though.
Best moment last week: Hmm, the natural birthing course.
Miss Anything? Seeing my hoohaa. It’s been so long since I’ve seen my vagina I’m not even sure I have one any more lol.
Movement: Big pushes, now up near my ribs too, cheers baby! Still lots of pushing on my right hip.
Food cravings: Well… the other night hubby and I drove to Coles, purchased 2L of Orange Juice and a bag of Fantales. I had it all in one night. Yep, I felt very sick afterwards but I just couldn’t satisfy the craving.
Anything making you queasy or sick: No.
Gender: Feeling girl.
Labor Signs: None. Possibly babys head is engaging more though.
Symptoms: Hard to breathe sometimes. And possible SPD?
Belly Button in or out? Still in. Just!!
Wedding rings on or off? Off.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy and anxious all in one haha.
Looking forward to: Baby’s birthday.
I’ve been suffering lots of pain in my pelvis region. It’s more painful towards my right hip/groin which is also where I had surgery last year. It’s also where baby keeps pushing against which really isn’t a comfortable feeling at all! It hurts to walk, sleep, bend, sit, stand… everything. Putting on pants and socks or washing my feet was hard enough with a big belly let alone with added pain. Some people said it could be baby’s head engaging. Others mentioned SPD. I Wiki’d SPD (Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction) and found out 1 in 4 pregnant women suffer it. I remember when I did pregnancy yoga a few months back 2 of the ladies who were in their 3rd trimester had SPD and said it was hell! If this is what I’m suffering, well I agree. There isn’t much you can do for it anyway I hear.
Luckily for me I don’t work right now. I’m able to sit on my bum all day and rest. But that just creates more pains, in my tail bone! I’m too agitated to sit all day. I’m tired as hell, lethargic as anything, but you have got to be kidding me if you think I could just relax on the couch and watch reality show after reality show (my guilty pleasure!) or chuck on a movie or 4. No way. At least I’m not nesting like crazy.
We hired a doula this week. I have been talking to her (lets just call her Doula!) since before I was pregnant as she used to work with my mum so I kind of know her. She has 3 boys of her own and is a massive home birthing, baby wearing, attachment parenting, breastfeeding advocate! But the best thing is she openly admits there is a place for hospitals, c-sections and medical help.
Hubby and I are the type of people who would love to be doing a home birth but cannot afford one so having Doula with us in the hospital will help ensure I get that home birth type expierience as much as possible. It’ll be nice for my husband to be able to be more in the moment without having to worry about keeping an eye on everything and being my voice 100% now that Doula is there to support him as well.
Doula ran a natural birthing course on the weekend that we attended with another couple who were 22 weeks pregnant and ALL OVER each other. It was interesting and went for 3 hours. I learnt that you don’t actually need to push a baby out. The contractions will push it out – no straining on my behalf necessary! It’s what the body is designed to do. Just like our bodies are able to birth both big and small babies – being told your pelvis is too small for baby to fit through is a common thing these days but in the majority of cases it is not true. You may have to birth in a different position or something, but it’s definitely possible! Interesting stuff. Also learnt that braxton hicks usually mean baby is in the correct position and usually means a shorter labour. I’ve been having them since I was 28 weeks!
We didn’t watch any gruesome birthing videos. Not sure if I’m let down by this, haha! We watched a short video of a water birth though, something I’d love but the hospital will not allow.
Over all it was a good course. The men got a lot from it, probably more so than the women! We are excited and feel a bit more relaxed now that we have a doula. Our hospital bag is packed, the car seat is strapped in, and now we just wait – it could be any day now! I feel that baby will come early… mid September is my guess.

HEADSPACE

This is a good image for me to post today.

I’ve been feeling a lot of stress and anxiety lately. Which makes me even more stressed and anxious – it’s a lovely time of chasing my tail! With the birth of our little one impending, it’s all becoming more real. Anxiety about being a new parent is kicking in, and not only for me. I think hubby feels it too but he isn’t one for expressing himself much (are any men though?!). There’s also stress about things other than our bambino/bambina arriving. Becoming pregnant and starting a family doesn’t mean the rest of your lives stop of course, so we have the usual stresses like our finances, family dramas and even something as little as one of our dogs has a bung nipple suddenly (don’t ask!).

I really want to be in a good headspace for baby’s birthday. And when I have my hormonal breakdowns, fuelled by the current stress and anxiety I’m feeling, I get so upset with the fact I’m not in a good positive headspace for labor and birth. I want to feel relaxed and calm and “okay and at peace” with everything. I have 6 more weeks until my due date, and I want it to be a peaceful 6 weeks.

It’s easy to get swept up in negative feelings and let your mind run with them. So this poster image above is something I don’t necessarily feel today but it’s what I want to be able to say I feel. So positive thinking, sunshine and laughter is on the agenda today. Life is good and I need to remember that.

A WEIGHTY ISSUE

With almost 6 weeks to go until due date, I’ve suddenly hit a wall with myself. I feel fat. Ugly, horrible, F-A-T.
In the first trimester I lost weight. I was so nauseous all the time, feeling so miserable and sick, that I didn’t eat much or properly. I lost just over 2 kilos within 6 weeks.
At 18 weeks pregnant I’d gained 2.5 kilos. By 26 weeks I was up 9 kilos. When I was 30 weeks I was up 10 kilos – I had a nice plateau for about a month until 30 weeks! And now at 33 weeks I seem to be gaining around a kilo a week. The baby books say that our baby is now gaining around 200g of fat a week. And that most women stack on the weight steadily around this time until birth. Doesn’t make me feel prettier!
And it’s not the number on the scales that bother me really. Earlier this week I looked in the mirror and realized how unattractive I look to myself. My mind filled with many thoughts – my husband must feel repulsed by me right now, why didn’t you take more care of what you were eating, you have so much work to do to feel beautiful again etc etc.
I remember reading other blogs of women who were pregnant and complaining about their bodies and weight gain and how much it was getting them down, during and after pregnancy. I remember thinking but you are carrying a baby! As long as you and baby are healthy, who cares what you weigh or how you look, crazy woman! And now, I totally get it. You’ve given your body over as host to this little being inside of you, for months and months… and there comes a point where you want it back!
I think I’m at that point.
I don’t make much effort lately in general with my looks. I never wear make up unless I’m going out. I don’t bother with my hair unless I have to. Usually it’s just in a messy bun on top of my head. I feel for my husband, and for myself I suppose – I should care about how I feel. Looking nice always makes me feel nice. But my poor hubby… he walks in the door every evening to a wife with a big belly who weighs 13 kilos more, with scraggly hair, not a scrap of make up on and dressed in baggy track pants and an oversized hoodie. Every evening. Compare this to the efforts I used to make (again, for both myself and my man) where I’d be wearing simple but effective make up, with my hair out and nicely styled and I’d be wearing decent attractive clothes. Ohh how times have changed. I’m too tired to bother these days! I don’t have the energy I used to have. Wonder what it’ll be like when baby actually arrives, haha!
So here I am, pledging to start making more of an effort.
Yes I’m tired – oh so tired lately (read: cannot be bothered!). Yes the thought of putting on some mascara makes me wonder but why… I’m not going out of the house and I’ll just have to wipe it off in 5 hours before my shower. Yes I know a lot of women don’t wear make up ever or only on special occasions. But I think I need to just pull my finger out brush my hair, put on a nice cardigan, and wack on a slick of eyeliner. I need to feel like me again.
As for the weight? The weight will come off. Eventually. There is nothing I can do right now about it. I’m not going to start restricting my food and running around the block at 8/9 months pregnant. I’m not one for diets when I’m not pregnant (ever!). I need to just accept my body has changed for the sake of this little being inside of me and I will get back to how I want to be, feel and look – in due time. Women need to stop pressuring themselves so much. I generalize because I know I’m not the only pregnant female out there who is struggling with this! Why do we do this to ourselves? Why can’t we look at our bodies and think I look different, curvier, beautiful. My body is doing amazing things to grow this baby. I am so blessed.
On that note, here is a picture of my beautiful curvy pregnant body, taken at 33 weeks ;)

32 WEEKS

I’m confused. I have 8 weeks until my due date and yes I’m aware babies can come early, and late! But the varying responses I get when people ask how much longer I have left is starting to bother me.
Some people seem to think 8 weeks is not much time and exclaim that I’m crazy for not having packed a hospital bag or washed all my cloth nappies, bought my breast pump etc and go into a frenzy and panic as if it is themselves that are pregnant and have to organize everything before baby arrives. On the other hand there are people who scoff and roll their eyes when I say I’m trying to work through my list of what I need to buy before baby comes and write a list of what I need to pack into my hospital bag and think of easy meals to have on hand or in the freezer for after the birth. My mother is guilty of this type of reaction.
I don’t feel a sense of urgency. I don’t feel rushed. I’m just taking it one day at a time, making lists and working through them. I got hubby to pull the suitcase out of the shed on the weekend so we can start thinking about packing the hospital bag. I’m sure it’ll sit empty and unopened for another 2 or 3 weeks before we start putting anything into it! I did start to pack the nappy bag over the weekend, which only arrived in the mail last Friday. I didn’t even think to pack one for the trip home from the hospital – my husband came up with that smart idea (we don’t live close to the hospital so it may be needed).
Another thing that bothers me? People (namely family) seem to get so upset when you tell them you just bought [insert object] for the baby. Even if it’s an essential item needed in preparation for the birth or for the day baby comes home from hospital, people seem to be getting upset and angry that we are buying everything for the baby. They say “what are we supposed to give when it is born if you keep buying everything?!” Oh, excuse me for trying to be organized. I told people what I needed for the baby shower but nobody listened so after the shower we went shopping and got what was still needed like some cot sheets and a bouncer and a few more 0000 onesies. Two families members then thought it was acceptable to be upset over the fact that we did this as maybe they wanted to get those things when the baby was born as a gift. Pretty sure I need nappies and cot sheets and clothing BEFORE the big day!
*breathe*
How far along? 32 weeks 1 day.
Total weight gain: 11.5kgs
Maternity clothes? Nothing is fitting properly but I’m determined not to go shopping for maternity clothes this late in the pregnancy!
Stretch marks? None.
Sleep: Much better lately but dreaming vividly every night and waking up covered in sweat. But at least I’m sleeping!
Best moment last week: Any time I have an antenatal appointment (had one last week) is the best moment because I never get tired of hearing baby’s heartbeat at the check ups!
Miss Anything? Laying on my stomach… just to read or sleep etc.
Movement: It’s becoming more uncomfortable now, big stretches and pushing my belly to the max!
Food cravings: Orange juice.
Anything making you queasy or sick: No.
Gender: Feeling girl lately.
Labor Signs: Nope.
Symptoms: So so so many pains. Hips, upper back, lower back, pelvis, stomach, neck, etc. Lots and lots of braxton hicks lately.
Belly Button in or out? Still in.
Wedding rings on or off? Off.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy! Excited for baby to come soon.
Looking forward to: Just soaking up the next 8 or so weeks… really trying to enjoy being pregnant before it’s over.

PAINS

So yesterday I was 31 weeks pregnant. Pregnancy has been fairly comfortable for me… until I hit 30 weeks.

I think it was 1 day before the 30 week mark. It was almost as if my body realized we had a potential 10 more weeks of carrying extra weight out the front and went “stuff it, I’m going to let the baby-ball-out-front win” and stopped trying to hold itself up. My back became so sore that I would cry out of frustration. No position would bring comfort. And it wasn’t just my lower back, but also up near my shoulder blades. Didn’t expect that one! And my hips… ohhh my hips! You’re not supposed to lay on your back when pregnant but how do you lay when back or tummy sleeping isn’t an option, and laying on your sides makes your hips ache?! And what about my neck – all the extra boobs, and the strain that is coming from my back and belly… it’s affecting my neck too.

Some nights I’ve not been able to sleep because of the pains (the general pregnancy insomnia and frequent bathroom trips are a whole nother thing!) and I’ve sighed and moaned and groaned as I tried to roll from one side to another, then back to the other side… how about we try an extra pillow in the already over-crowded bed? Nope, doesn’t help. What if we take 2 out, maybe that might help. Nup, no good. Okay, just try and lay here and ignore it, think of something happy… Stuff it, I’ll get up. Next thing you know I’m in the kitchen eating snacks at 2AM and checking the internet on my iPhone in the darkness of the lounge room while hubby peacefully sleeps with no aches and pains in bed. Lucky bustard…

I don’t like whining about it. I feel like people think I’m ungrateful to be carrying a healthy child inside me. But sometimes having a cry about the pains to someone else just makes you feel better. Even better is when you find someone else who is going through the same thing and can relate. You get this kind of sick joy knowing they are in as much discomfort as you are.

We are lucky enough to have a bath in our house. The shower can be fine, but sometimes submerging all your weight in the bath can relieve so much back pain. Johnson’s Dreamy Skin Creamy Bath is nice to use in the water, it has lavender to help relax you and the bubbles are always fun! I’ve also been grateful that the Olympics is on while I’m feeling so miserable and couch-bound. Nothing like watching athletes from around the world with amazingly hot bodies do incredible things, while my body is struggling to bend over to pick the cat up. But seriously, it’s nice that there is always something on TV when I’m up in the middle of the night! I haven’t craved much throughout this pregnancy but when I have it was always sweet things. Now I’m really into raisin toast and it’s so comforting in this cold winter weather. Slap some butter on it and chow down. There are a few things I’ve found to help alleviate the aches and pains of pregnant and the biggest one is my wheat bag. Pop it in the microwave for 2 minutes and drape it over the sore spots and it’s immediate relief. I even sleep with it on me, it’s my current life saver… My Snoogle Pillow is also handy for the soreness, but it’s so bulky in the bed and I feel bad pushing hubby all the way to the edge of the mattress! But I’ve been using it when I nap and even on the floor in the lounge room because the couch just isn’t cutting it right now! In fact, I got hubby to drag the IKEA Poang chair into the lounge room for me to use. I know he didn’t mind, because it means he gets the whole couch! It’s much easier for me to get up and down from, and it supports my back better than the soft lounge. It’s actually our feeding chair in baby’s room!