Gooood morning! I hope you had a great weekend and awesome St. Patty’s Day!
I thought I’d do a 38 week pregnancy update in case I don’t make it to the next 40 week installment. I’ve been trying to do some journaling throughout pregnancy to keep track of certain milestones, feelings, etc., and this sure helps too.
We really joke that she could be here any day now so I’m just trying to enjoy all that is left.
HOW I’M FEELING
I still feel pretty good overall. Life is a little bit more uncomfortable around here, as I’m bigger and rounder, and bump into more things. I’m trying to bend down less (like for the dishwasher and washer/dryer), but I think I do it so often without noticing. I’ve told Ed that at every milestone where I seem to “get bigger,” I recognize it for the first few days as I adjust. Then, I adjust and it doesn’t seem like as big of a deal anymore and I seem to move around more fluidly.
Wow – I’m amazed when I look back at my 7 week “mini bump” vs. now. Our bodies are so cool.
I know some people say they hate the final weeks of pregnancy and are just ready for the baby to be born, but I haven’t felt that way. I mean I’m ready for her to be born, but I’m still enjoying being pregnant. It’s actually like I can stand out wherever we go since I’m the “pregnant woman.” lol
At this point, you’re supposed to be counting kicks to make sure the baby’s activity doesn’t change. There was one night where she seemed less active and we thought about going in to have her heartbeat checked (just to be safe!) but I drank some cold water and orange juice, and ate a yasso bar, and eventually she woke back up and got back to her active self. I think she was just sleeping hard that night! They tell you to eat sugar or drink something cold and that can usually stimulate the baby.
BABY SIZE AND CHARACTERISTICS
I’ve seen a few different comparisons for the size of the baby – celery, length of leeks, pumpkin, watermelon. None of them seem super comparable to me, but we’ll go with it!
Typical babies at this stage weigh about 7 lbs and are 20 inches long!
Baby is shedding the vernix, her protective coating over her skin now. Her lungs are still maturing and she is producing more surfactant, which will prevent the air sacs in the lungs from sticking together. She is also continuing to add fat and fine tune her brain and nervous system. Keep growing, baby!
This is also a big week because at/after 37 weeks, the baby is considered “full term.” The doctor did say that each and every day is important in terms of development, so I’m thankful for each passing day.
I guess I can finally call oatmeal an aversion because I haven’t had it over the past month. More often, I’m eating cereal or toast in the mornings. I don’t know what’s up with oatmeal, but that used to be a daily thing for me. Maybe the baby got sick of it.
All the other favorites (eggs, pizza, ice cream, crackers, hummus, fruit) are still going strong. I still love my oranges and citrus fruits, but I’ve been buying more pineapple lately because that’s sounds nice and juicy. I’ve also been loving regular potatoes, and making them into fries or just a plain ole’ baked potato with butter.
Ed and I both decided some fried chicken and fries sounded good the other day, so we ended up at Tenders with zucchini fries, fries, a fried chicken sandwich and fried chicken tenders.
These last few weeks, baby is gaining 1/2 lb to a lb a week, so my appetite is at an all time high. It’s actually tough because my stomach seems to be shrinking. After every meal, I feel like I’m telling Ed how full I am, yet a little while later, I’m hungry again. I’m just rolling with the punches. As I’ve discussed before, pregnancy has provided many great learning lessons in intuitive eating and body recognition, so I’m grateful to be learning along the way.
Sleeping is probably the most difficult thing right now. I seem to switch from side to side all night, and I’m waking up to pee like every 2 hours. The hardest part has been not being able to fall back asleep after waking up. There were a few days I was up since 3am because I just couldn’t fall back asleep! How do women in the 3rd trimester get any rest at all? I’d love to know!
I get the itchy belly symptoms often, and sometimes my legs itch. Little bit of a pain but luckily it hasn’t caused too many problems. I’m also still stuffed up and Ed says I’m majorly snoring at night when I am sleeping (lol, oops) but I’m convinced it’s the extra weight on all of my organs.
I don’t feel overly emotional at this point but that could change based on the day. I feel pretty happy and excited overall, just sleep deprived 😉
Exercise still feels great and I am enjoying running in the third trimester. I asked my practitioner if I should be cutting down at any point and they encouraged me to continue (obviously not at full intensity). I ran a few days last week, which mostly translates to walk/run. But I love the endorphins after doing so and the weather has been beautiful. I’ve also done some long hour walks, and a good amount of yoga. Yoga is supposed to be a huge game changer in preparing women for birth, so I may just continue to focus on that moving forward.
I am in love with our maternity photos. So as not to blow up your feed, I’ll just share a few for you guys. These are my current favorites. If you’re local to Charlotte, we used Leslie Mason.
I love how my belly button is just popping out. That happened pretty early on!
I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about birth and how my ideal birth would go. I’ve been REALLY INTO listening to birth stories and pregnancy podcasts – that’s seemingly all I’m interested in listening to right now. My three favorites are the Birth Hour, The Pregnancy Podcast and Birthful. I used to be so grossed out by birth stories but you guys, they are SO FASCINATING. I can’t get enough. I’ve heard women talk about giving birth in the car, using vs not using an epidural, early induction, unplanned C-sections, using the support of a doula, having a midwife vs. OB-GYN and so much more. I’m so grateful there is so much information available because I really feel like I’ve educated myself as best I can to this point.
I know that there’s so much about birth you can’t plan. It seems like most women go into the experience with their own idea for a perfect outcome, and it rarely turns out that way. We’ve written a birth plan, but I totally get that it probably won’t turn out how I envision it. My idea behind the birth plan is for some of my wishes to be honored (hopefully) and try to create the most ideal birth environment possible. I know I definitely want skin to skin right away, delayed cord clamping, and I want to be mobile as much as possible throughout labor. I hope these wishes can be granted, but of course, open to doctor’s recommendations if something serious comes up.
I’m apprehensive and scared of the unknown, however from everything I’m reading, I’m learning how important attitude is. So, I’m sort of treating it like a race or a competition. I’ve been training for this day for 9 months, so when it comes, I have to be mentally and physically ready. I don’t want to go in afraid of pain. Rather, expecting some, but instead of focusing on the pain, focusing on the pleasure. The end result. The fact that I’m lucky to be here in the first place. That the final outcome is worth every single part of the labor and pushing.
I’ve found some great quotes that I’m holding onto:
“When you change the way you view birth, the way you birth will change.”
—Marie F. Mongan, founder of HypnoBirthing
“Giving birth should be your greatest achievement, not your greatest fear.”
“The purpose exceeds the pain.”
Are you someone who likes to prepare for things or just take them as they come?
Do you find quotes to be inspirational?
Mom’s, what were the last few weeks of your pregnancy like?