Week 37 and I find myself taking inventory of all the latest developments in discomforts during these last few weeks of this pregnancy journey. Truth is I’ve sailed through this pregnancy quite smoothly – too smoothly if you ask me. It was only a matter of time before the dream pregnancy karma was going to rear its ugly head. (Read up on my first post here)
I keep reminding myself everyday that I’m on the homestretch but it honestly feels like this boy is never going to come out. My swollen belly literally feels like a blown up balloon and if you blew into it just one more time, it might just explode. Sometimes I get paranoid that if I sneeze too hard that my water might just break. Honestly, with the level of discomfort I’m feeling right now – it may not be such a bad thing.
Putting on underwear is seriously painful because arching your back is a mammoth task when you’re carrying that much weight up front. Getting up and out of bed gracefully is a distant memory and I now have to use momentum to roll myself out and hope I land on my feet. So here are some of the things I’m experiencing and most women will experience during the last few weeks of pregnancy and my tips on how to cope.
Annoying Things Women Experience Towards the End of the Pregnancy
Holy smokes they weren’t kidding about this one! My footwear choices have now been narrowed down to just flip-flops sadly and even then, my feet kind of overflows on them. I no longer have ankles and instead of feet I have marshmallows hanging off the end of my equally swollen legs. The swelling is because of the increased pressure on your veins that provide passage of blood to your legs.
Tip: Put a pillow at the end of your bed at night when you sleep and keep it slightly elevated. If you manage to convince your partner to give you a foot rub then make sure they rub upwards to encourage that blood to flow.
There’s nothing worse than waking up in the middle of the night with the most excruciating leg cramps that just won’t stop. The baby is putting so much pressure on my uterus and veins that travel through to the legs that I wake up on most nights with a cramp of some sort.
Tip: Try taking magnesium supplements or eat more bananas as a magnesium deficiency usually causes cramps. Also try rotating your feet regularly when you’re seated and stretching up and down when cramps do happen.
I don’t know why I thought it would be ok to be pregnant in the middle of Australian summer because it isn’t. I’ve literally put myself into lockdown and have a brand new portable air conditioning unit installed which remains on almost permanently. The level of hormones is peaking right about now and having hot flashes happens almost hourly. I have now moved into the spare room that has the air conditioning unit because sleeping in a room without it makes me feel like a thanksgiving turkey – stuffed and cooked.
Tip: Drink lots of water to stay hydrated!
Oh this is a fun one. Imagine trying to have a meal only to have it come back up the esophagus when you burp or hiccup… that’s heartburn for you. It almost acts as a deterrent for me these days to eat because of what might come bubbling back up. This happens because along with every other organ in your body, the uterus is placing pressure on your intestines, which then pushes your stomache. When your digestion slows the food that festers in your stomache grows acidic and bubbles up.
Tip: Eat smaller meals but frequently. So kiss your three course meals goodbye because that’ll come back to haunt you. Don’t eat directly before heading to bed and don’t lie down straight after a meal.
Inability to Bend Over & Back Pain
Like I said before, putting on underwear is harder than learning quantum physics and putting on shoes is out of the question. We were browsing through Dymocks and bending down to see what books were on the bottom shelf was probably one of the hardest things I’ll ever do.
Tip: Try walking around a pool and just floating in it if you can or really milk the pregnancy card with your partner and make him do all the lifting. (I like option two!)
Tiny Bladder Problems
I use to be someone who would never get up in the middle of the night for toilet breaks but now? I’d be lucky to get away with two trips in a night. Probably the most annoying thing is that a lot of the time, it’s a false alarm. We decided to brave the Boxing Day sales last year and when the time came to pay a visit to the little girls room, the line was larger-than-life. You have no idea how much I wanted to play the pregnancy card but decided to just suck it up and wait the twenty minutes to relieve my tiny bladder.
Tip: Nup – I don’t really have one for this. I’d say drink less at night before bed but if you’re parched then definitely stay hydrated. It’s better to get up a few times a night then dehydrating yourself and bubs.
Playing the Waiting Game
I’m excited and terrified. It feels like time is never-ending. I am literally looking out for any signs of labour at the moment. So far the only sign I’ve had is the incredible and unyielding urge to clean and get this house spotless before the big day. It’s a weird feeling of anticipation and terror when you know there is nothing you can do to avoid the pain of giving birth but holding your baby in your arms in the end almost makes you forget the pain awaiting you at the finish line. Almost. (Read about all the things Hollywood lied to us about childbirth here)
Tip: Keep your mind off the impending D-Day by hanging out with friends and family or try doing something that you use to love but never get the time to do anymore. For me this is scrapbooking!
Sleep is For the Weak!…and Those Who Aren’t Pregnant
Tip: The best thing you can do is build a fortress of pillows around you and if this means that your partner gets banished to the spare room then so be it! Or in our case – I banished my grumpy self to the spare room. I’m writing this post with one maternity pillow on my left, three standard pillows behind my back, one under my feet and a memory foam pillow to my right. The pillow fort is a thing!
Have I got you excited about pregnancy or what?! Ha!
No really though… I am very excited to meet baby Jacob in just a few weeks!
What have you experienced in your last few weeks of pregnancy?