You could say that the third trimester hasn't exactly been smooth sailing. In fact it's been a whole load of crap and only started to get slightly better in week 35.
Was I naive to think that I my pregnancy would be smooth sailing with just the normal level of symptoms etc?
I haven't seen that many pregnancies in recent years to compare mine to so it's difficult to know but I feel like I've just been hit with problem after problem and it's made it quite difficult to enjoy a time that I've looked forward to my whole life.
As I'm sure you all know (because I do nothing but talk about it) in week 28, just entering my third trimester I was diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes. And my God I was miserable. I cried solidly for two weeks. I raged about the fact that I was pregnant and couldn't eat what I wanted, I cried because I was hungry and bored of eating the same thing on repeat, but most of all I sobbed over the thought that I was failing my baby and that if I couldn't even get its foetal growing phase right how on earth was I going to be a good mother?
I know in my heart that these things aren't linked and yet the thought couldn't help but appear.
And yet, with all things, you settle in to a routine. You go about your days and the days turn into weeks, and weeks in to months and suddenly you realise that you've been eating a certain way for two months, you've lost 7lbs, and although you still hate the food choices - especially given how much I love my comfort food (which is mostly just carbs) you are nearly at the end and baby is healthier for it.
That was the start of the problems but I hate to say it, it didn't get any better from there. Baby was measuring small, then it put on weight, then it dropped again, so much so that they gave me steroids in case they needed to induce at 34 weeks. Then baby put on weight but the amniotic fluid dropped meaning that again they were talking about an early induction. I tried to hold on to the thought that they were just doing what was best for baby whilst freaking out because nobody wants to see their child covered in wires and in NICU.
Week 34 saw me start to go in for daily monitoring, which I'm not going to lie, was the biggest faff in the world. We have spent a fortune on the car park there but so pleased we have a car so I can get to the hospital easily. I tried really hard not to be worried but of course failed because all I've done this pregnancy is worry. Being hooked up to the machine and hearing baby's heartbeat was a treat but the wait times, combined with a constant need to wee made each visit uncomfortable.
Then finally in week 35 we got some good news at a scan. Not only had baby put on a significant amount of weight but the amnotic fluid had also increased meaning that the consultants were happy for me to go to nearly full term and I only needed monitoring twice a week, something I am grateful for, although no monitoring would have been even better. After so many weeks of being unsure it was lovely to have some certainty.
I've been following lots of pregnant women on Instagram and they are all saying the same thing - I'm bored now, can't wait to meet my baby, how much longer, etc. But I've spent so many weeks praying that baby stays in my tummy so it can bigger I'm finding it hard to make the adjustment and I'm not finding myself impatient at all. Maybe it's because we have an induction date so there's no need for me to be. If anything I'm desperate for time to slow a little as I keep getting really emotional at the thought that Leigh and I don't have much time left as just the two of us.
I ended up going on my maternity leave about a week and a half early at the consultants advice, not to mention numerous friends and family. It meant that I actually left 6 weeks before my due date which seemed a bit excessive but I was getting more and more uncomfortable as the weeks went on and my mind wasn't on the job, especially during the panic stage of ,'Will I be having this baby at 33 weeks?!'
I'll be writing a separate post about Maternity Leave so keep an eye out for that!
It hasn't been all doom and gloom though I promise, there have been a few times where I'm still enjoying being pregnant and I've been meeting some lovely new mum friends. MUSH has been a life saver where we haven't had the NCT social aspect.
One of my favourite new mums dragged me along to pregnancy yoga which I was so resistant to do but I've been to 5 classes and feel great after every one. I'm definitely here for any exercise where I don't have to break a sweat and for once I'm not focused on how my body looks when I'm contorting as I'm all bump with everyone else.
I also went along to a hypnobirthing taster class and to be honest I would have done it, if it hadn't looked likely at the time that I'd have to have a c-section. It would have rendered breathing techniques useless. I'll definitely consider it with baby 2 whenever that may be.
It was also touch and go but I managed to attend my baby shower, something I had been so looking forward to. It was so special having lots of my favourite women there, I won't bore you with it again though when you can read about it here.
The thought of labour still isn't scaring me, I had a brief moment around week 33 when all the problems started where I had a bit of a panic moment but as soon as baby started responding to the additional rest I was taking and the weight started to increase I went back to feeling fine about it all. Baby's potential birthday was decided at my 36 week consultant appointment and I felt a massive relief knowing that a) It was later than I expected and b) I now had a plan.
It looks like I'll be having an induction and straight on to the epidural, unless I surprise myself and can handle the contractions. But I've been told they are more painful when you're induced so it may be unlikely. I've told Leigh he just needs to remind me of all the strong women who have done this before me and survived.
My friend told me that I've been pregnant for 260 days and sometimes it feels like it, especially when I think back to the days of trying to hide it and the constant nausea. In the same breath it feels like the whole thing has gone by in a blur.
When you're just days from meeting the little one that's going to change your life for the first time it can all seem quite daunting but I'm nothing but excited. I'm 37 weeks whilst writing this, a milestone I never thought I'd get to see and I am determined to enjoy these last few weeks of pregnancy while I still can.
Baby putting on weight after our scare
Having scans every two weeks and being able to see the baby lots
Being told I could go past 37 weeks
Steroid injections - they hurt like a motherbitch!
Being told baby had only put on 2oz in 2 weeks
The worry of low amniotic fluid
Being told I had GD
Still not feeling that Avocado
Nausea is back, thought not as extreme
General uncomfortable bump