Pregnancy Update — 31 weeks

It’s been a while since a pregnancy update. Something like three months? Yikes. We’re into single digit weeks, folks (approximately…).

I’m surprised it’s taken me this long to write another update because all I’ve got is baby on the brain. I have several writing projects on hold and have trouble concentrating at work. I just haven’t felt like writing or really doing much of anything unless it is reading up on breastfeeding, adding cloth diapers to our registry, researching pediatricians or cooking freezer meals. I’m starting to panic that we only have nine weekends left until baby’s due date. Factor in the holidays and that really only leaves us with 6-7 Saturdays to do all of the things. That’s if the baby doesn’t come early, which like, it’s more likely that I’ll be late BUT STILL. My brother was like three weeks early. If everything is not perfectly prepared by the time of that first contraction, god bless my husband and anyone else who has to deal with me! I know it’s kind of ridiculous, but this is far too important. SORRYNOTSORRY. And so, I’ve become very protective of my time. Don’t take it personally. (Mostly concerned about the big things. I will be fine if say, all the baby’s clothes aren’t sorted or whatever. I’ll be fine. Fiiiiiine.) 🙂

Baby Shower

Baby moves a lot. So much that I’ve become really used to it and can often ignore it if I’m wrapped up in something else. I’m pretty sure Baby Hegz got the hiccups the other night and Steven was adorably fascinated by it. The movements have really only felt like punches or jabs a couple times. For the most part they’re gentle and feel more like rolls than punches. Sweet little baby must have Steven’s demeanor and not be very forceful. Or just too small to hurt me yet. Heh.

Babigurl getting in some baby cuddles.

Babigurl getting in some baby cuddles.

I’m starting to feel a little sick of being pregnant. I miss being able to go on walks (or runs!) longer than half an hour because I seriously cannot go that long without peeing. I miss being able to sleep on my stomach. I miss having more than four tops to wear and like two work appropriate pairs of pants (read: not leggings or yoga pants). Every single time I stand up, I feel like a bowling ball is resting on my bladder. I have a hard time getting comfortable and my lower back aches a lot. But really, these are minor aches and pains, and I’ve had a very manageable pregnancy. I’m thankful to have found a way to make the heartburn less intense (papaya enzyme tablets!) and to not be experiencing a great deal of swelling or stretch marks….although we’ll see what the next nine weeks bring!

When I start to feel frustrated with the aches and pains and inability to easily tie my shoes, I remind myself that I will never have this back. I will never be pregnant with my first child again. I will never again tell my parents they will soon become grandparents. I will never again, for the first time, wait those agonizing minutes for a very faint second line to appear or tell Steven he’s going to be a new dad. Those things have already passed, and I won’t get to experience them ever again. Right now it feels like this pregnancy thing is lasting and will last forever (like haven’t I been pregnant all of 2015? Yeah, kind of, mostly), but it will be gone before I know it. Time does pass. Even when you’re counting the days.

My sister and I at my baby shower in October

My sister and I at my baby shower in October

I’m mildly concerned about my weight, and I wish I could be more active. I just…..would love for my weight gain to stop right here (hiiiii this is enough! I’m good!), but baby has growing to do and the third trimester is when ya pack on the pounds. We had to quit our gym membership (dollabillz), so I haven’t been swimming. 🙁 I do still walk at least a couple miles a day and go to yoga once or twice a week. I looooove my prenatal yoga classes. They’re amazing. I wish my walks could be longer, but I have that half hour contingency on my bladder. Heh. As with all things pregnancy, I remind myself that this is temporary. And fleeting. There will be time. Years actually. For running races, and 6 a.m. workouts, and pushing my limits, and maybe eating less ice cream than I am now (maybe?). Right now I’m growing a human. And that’s all I need to worry about.

In addition to prenatal yoga, which has been as much about mental strength as it has physical, we’ve also completed a five week birth education class, a childbirth workshop, a natural strategies birth class and will have a couple breastfeeding classes in December. All of these have been great, and I feel like I have the information, tools and support I need to create a positive birth experience. At least that’s the hope. I’ve been trying to prepare myself mentally, physically and emotionally for labor. As much as possible having absolutely no idea what to expect. I really think the worst part is the unknown. Just how bad will the pain be? Will I be able to handle it? How long will it last? It sounds quite silly, but I’ve started to really pay attention to my reaction to pain and how I manage it. When I stub my toe or shut my finger in a drawer (these are daily occurrences, heh), I actually practice breathing through it. I’m assuming this labor thing is like stubbing your toe times a million? But I’m trying to be mindful. Years ago when I thought about having children, I assumed I would gladly accept any kind of pain medication available to me. But then I got pregnant, started reading about hospital birth horror stories and the way childbirth is treated like a medical condition in America and not a natural process (more on that later — a whole blogpost), and I began to feel like maybe I wanted something different. I would like, as much as possible, to allow my body to do this without intervention, and to be connected to my body and the process. Although I’m having a hospital birth, I would like for it to be a natural one, and no, unless explicitly asked, I don’t really care what your opinion on that matter is. So well, right now I’m breathing through middle of the night toe stubbing on the way to the bathroom (for the millionth time). Who knows if that is really any kind of preparation, but don’t worry. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Steven created this for the wall above baby's crib.

Steven created this for the wall above baby’s crib.

Lastly, you see, there’s this crease in our couch. It’s an old couch — one we bought from a friend for our first apartment. I’m not even sure how old it is and it was of course used previously by the family we bought it from. It’s been good to us. Still very comfy, but it’s beginning to show its age. I see the crease every time I come downstairs and step into our living room, and it makes me long for nice things. For a house of our own to bring this baby home to. For a large gray sectional in an open living space with natural light and dark wood floors. Our rental has also been very good to us, but it’s old too. Has character. And our dishwasher broke this week. I truly don’t know when or if we’ll ever upgrade our living situation, and given all that I have and my biggest concern being washing a few dishes by hand, boy is it ridiculous to not think I have enough. But something about having a baby makes me feel like I’m not giving that child what they deserve. Which is silly, because things don’t make a life. And things don’t love a baby. People do. And really to think children should only come home to “real houses” is an incredibly classist and elitist thing to think. But it’s something that’s been weighing on me. Kudos to you, capitalism, for making parents feel inadequate for not having stuff they don’t need.

I don’t really have too many FAQ’s for this update. People have been very kind and tell me often that I look great. Bless you, people. Overall I’m feeling anxious and excited and I find myself saying daily to Steven that “I just want the baby here.” Soon enough. For now I’m trying to cherish this time when my first baby is so close to me. Protected from the harsh, sharp edges of this world. Surrounded by warmth and the beating of my heart. (If pregnancy makes me this cheesy, just imagine what motherhood will do!)

A bump photo from a couple weeks ago featuring the world's best big sister, Dixie Doodle.

A bump photo from a couple weeks ago featuring the world’s best big sister, Dixie Doodle.