My third trimester started off with a scan at 29 weeks and a consultant appointment. Piglet was measuring perfectly and we started to discuss my delivery options. Ever since falling pregnant I had been confident that I wanted a natural birth. By this, I mean I wanted to avoid a C-section as far as possible. As a diabetic I am at risk of carrying a baby with an increased abdominal circumference. In those situations a C-section is recommend. I made this clear to my team and they agreed that provided nothing changed it could go ahead.
At the start of this trimester I started to notice a level of numbness in my right hand. This soon turned into a discomfort, and eventually spread to my left hand. It took me a few weeks to realise it was carpal tunnel. Soon I was unable to sleep as every time I got comfortable and was about to drift off the pain would take over. When combining that with the Piglet doing a dance on my bladder I got very little sleep! My midwife gave me 2 wrist splints to wear at night, but by 32 weeks I was wearing the right hand one for the majority of the day as the slightly bend of my wrist could leave me in serious pain.
The generally accepted norm of pregnancy is that as you progress your bump gets bigger. I had always been measuring small throughout but it became more noticeable in the third trimester. I was already having additional scans so we knew the baby was growing, it was just a small bump. This meant Piglet was right in there, pushing against my organs and ribs and generally making life uncomfortable. As our new house is being renovated we didn’t (and still don’t) have a table to sit at to eat meals. I found eating on my lap incredibly uncomfortable as Piglet pushed up on my stomach.
My friends had given me voucher for a mum-to-be treatment for my birthday in October, but I saved it to have when I was further along and could appreciate it. I went along at 33 weeks and it was so nice to be pampered for a while. The treatment was a leg and foot massage and a facial, with warm towels wrapped around your bump. I’m fairly certain I was close to falling asleep on the bed, it was just what I needed!
As is the norm in the third trimester, I went along to the antenatal classes. I had 2 classes about labour and delivery, 1 about bringing baby home, 1 about feeding baby and 1 about relaxation. The relaxation class was predominately about hypno-birthing. It was an interesting class and I can see how it would be of value to a lot of people, however I know how my mind works and I was fairly sure I wouldn’t be able to keep it up during labour! I found the instructor very anti-pain relief, and she seemed to be trying to pressurise us all to follow her way of doing it. I was pretty confident I was going to want an epidural, and I wanted that choice to be my own and not to be guilted into something else.
The feeding baby class was all about breast feeding and they barely touched on bottle feeding. As I have mention in my feeding journey, I am pro feeding of any kind and I found that they were laying it on pretty thick for breast feeding. It was hardly mentioned that there were other options available if you weren’t coping which I think is a big omission.
Piglets movements got really big this trimester, and more often than not were quite painful. He was fairly large for the small amount of space he had and so he remained really high up. Most movements could be seen from the outside as he jabbed about inside.
My weight gain for the whole pregnancy was very low. I didn’t specifically watch what I ate, it just seemed pregnancy agreed with me. As my bump didn’t seem to get very large or have any significant growth spurts I didn’t get any stretch marks either (hate away!). I did take precautions though. At first I was using Palmer Cocoa Butter Formula Original and it kept my skin nicely moisturised. Then in October my sister gave me Neal’s Yard Remedies Mother & Baby Mothers Balm. She had used it for both her pregnancies and received no stretch marks. It is an odd texture at first but once you start rubbing it in it is lovely! I can’t say whether or not it made any difference to me getting stretch marks – but I would definitely be using it again!
At 36 weeks I had my final scan. I met with my consultants and they were really pleased with how I’d coped with the diabetes. They were happy to let me stay pregnant a little while longer and so we booked my induction for a few weeks time. I would have been 38+2 – the end of the third trimester was in sight! That night I decided to finishing packing my hospital bag. I’d half heartedly done a basic one at around 34 weeks, but this time I did it more seriously. And thank goodness I did.
Two days later I went into early labour. It was go time!