Thursday 4 August 2016

Third Trimester Essentials

Stop Faffing Desk Pad £5 from Paperchase // Birth Ball £9.99 from Amazon // Ina May Gaskin’s Guide to Childbirth £9.09 from Amazon // Flannel £1.49 from Superdrug // Bath Bomb £2.75 from Lush // Maternity Vest £6.99 from New Look //

It’s easy to end up feeling overwhelmed during pregnancy, especially as you near the finishing line. There are just so many things you need to do/buy/make. I am often kept awake at night by random things popping into my head and I can easily lie awake half the night worrying about all the things I have yet to do. To try and tackle this, I make to-do lists. Lots of to-do lists. I have lists scattered pretty much all around the house and reams of notes on my phone reminding me to do things. I do also have a dedicated to-do list pad though which helps me keep track of everything.

I think I got more use out of my birth ball when I was pregnant with Ebony, but that’s because I found pregnancy much less comfortable last time. By the end of the day, the only place I could sit comfortably was on my birth ball. I have been using the birth ball for bouncing this time in the desperate hope it will bring about the onset of labour, though I’ve had to take a break since spraining my ankle.

I loved giving birth to Ebony and am really excited to be doing it all again in just a week or so. To help me prepare for the birth, I’ve been reading lots of positive birth stories and Ina May Gaskin’s books have proved invaluable to this. Guide to Childbirth was definitely my favourite, the collection of birth stories included were really inspiring and really helped me to focus on what I want the birth to be like.

The third trimester can be pretty uncomfortable. I’ve suffered with a sore pelvis, a sprained ankle and that awful feeling of stretching skin. For this reason, I’m taking a lot of baths. Like, a lot of baths. I like to sit down in the bath and listen to the Woman’s Hour podcast. I used to do this when I was heavily pregnant with Ebony, at the time they had a lot of programmes about childbirth and babies. I can remember sitting in the bath, very heavily pregnant, sobbing along to listener’s stories about their first nights at home with the new baby.

I can remember one couple saying they’d had a home birth and, as soon as the midwives left, the snuggled up as a family and toasted with champagne. It sounded so amazing. In reality, I discovered I was far too tired after labour to manage any alcohol related toasts. Bath bombs are the perfect addition to a birth, I really love the Lush ones because they smell so good. And they turn your bath all kinds of magical colours. The only problem is I have to keep them hidden from Ebony otherwise she insists on joining me and she talks over Woman’s Hour.

Flannels. I’ve developed a really weird thing about flannels. Literally all I want to do is sit in a hot bath and wash my face with a flannel. I have no idea why. I’m hoping this symptom will disappear at the end of the pregnancy because if not I think I’m going to end up needing some form of therapy. Flannel withdrawal therapy maybe.

At 39 weeks, I’ve reached that awful stage of pregnancy where all of my clothes are too small. The tops that fit me in the second trimester now fail to cover my huge bump. I have found that the only clothes I can really wear are maternity dresses and maternity vests. The vests are great because they’re long enough to cover my belly and also keep me cool. The only problem is I have just two maternity vests and one of them is white so I get about twenty minutes of wear out of it before spilling food all over it.

What were the essential items that got you through the third trimester?

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