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HerBaby: Bronwen’s Third Trimester

Bronwen Stead

While by the time this is published our little man will have arrived, I wanted to share with you separately our third trimester experiences.

Most of the advice that I had come across stated that the first and third trimesters are the hardest. Given how much better I was feeling in my second trimester than my first, I went into my third trimester with a positive outlook. I figured that if I was expecting to feel crummy again then that it would happen, whereas if I remained positive it could only help, and for the most part my third trimester did feel even better than the first or second!

Time certainly picked up for us this trimester. All of a sudden we were hitting milestones every other day: under 100 days left, then single digits weeks left, then entering the season our baby would be born, and then being able to say our baby would be born next month!

THE TRUTH ABOUT THE THIRD TRIMESTER

This trimester was truly the best for me. While ticking of the milestones was fun, I also physically felt a lot better. My back pain really reduced, for the most part my sleep improved – though little man would still have my up every few nights, but being fairly used to limited sleep I would use this time productively.

Towards the end of the trimester I just felt massive. There is no other way to put it. This isn’t fishing for compliments or reassurance – I knew I was big, and felt really insecure about it, to the point that some days I really just wanted to hibernate and not be seen.

All my cravings were gone and I was eating healthily, but my body would seem to go through periods of quickly stacking on weight regardless.

ALL THINGS PHYSICAL

The groin injury I re-aggravated in my second trimester continued to bother me to the point that walking some days was impossible – even just walking from one end of the mall to the other would be really awful.

I started to see the physios at the hospital who did some releasing and gave me a belly belt to wear. As the abdominals naturally loose their strength as your belly expands, this can put a lot of pressure on your pelvis.

Not being able to exercise really frustrated me, however, I really found my sanity in taking up pre-natal yoga at Yoga for Birth and Beyond.

Full disclosure: I have been a lover of yoga for years, and it turned out that the instructor Julia is the mother of a friend from dance, but I can honestly say that these classes helped me immeasurably.

It was lovely to be in class full of other pregnant ladies, Julia would set a theme each week and share advice but also encourage us to share our experiences, and the gentle movements and stretching ensured that I always had the best sleep afterwards. I cannot recommend Julia’s classes enough.

Little man seems to have found his favourite position and doesn’t really deviate from it. His feet seem to be up near my right rib cage and his head and hands by me left hip, and these two areas are where we feel most of his movements.

Sometimes I will just vague out and watch my belly move – it can be quite pronounced! And occasionally he will get the hiccups in there!

LEARNING HOW TO BABY

We participated in a five week pre-natal class program as part of our mid-wife program – CATCH.

While we had both been fairly proactive in educating ourselves, these classes were definitely very useful especially when it came to practical advice.

Each week there would be a different focus – we covered things like the standard labour, things that can go wrong and interventions, a session with the physios on how to take care of ourselves and our bodies, and how to care for your newborn.

Andrew’s highlight from the classes were the practical skills like learning how to swaddle a baby. For me I will never forget the class that they brought our a placenta. That’s right, a real placenta, that had been birthed that morning.

I know I have one, I know it is part of the process, but when the midwives started the class telling us they would show us a placenta, Andrew looked straight at me and I am sure all colour drained from my face.

I have the utmost respect for medical staff and what they do, but me myself I am not great with blood and guts. When they tipped it out of the tub and stretched it around showing us the different parts, I definitely felt queasy!

FASHION AND PREGNANCY

I had every intention of purchasing some more maternity clothes but in the end time got away from me. Feeling big and uncomfortable in my skin probably put me off a bit as well, and being so close to the end I felt like my finances were better used in things for the baby rather than clothes I would only wear for a short period of time.

This was definitely the most boring period my wardrobe has ever been – while normally I do spend a large amount of my life in gym gear, I love fashion. My non-maternity clothes have been moved to the spare bedroom and I am very much looking forward to being able to bring some of those picese back into my regular rotation!

ALL THINGS MEDICAL

We continue to be super impressed with the CATCH program. Our midwife meets with us regularly and is always at the end of the phone which is really reassuring when those silly questions arise.

At 34 weeks we had our final scan to ensure our baby was developing on track. True to character he squirmed around and for the third time they tried to take a 3d picture but he was to wriggly for it to work.

While he wouldn’t move his hands away from his face for a nice profile picture we did get some video recorded this time which I think we have watched at least 100 times since.

While all my cardiology appointments came back without any further concerns, getting the report back to my midwife was an absolute nightmare.

I booked a follow up appointment, I phoned and I showed up a third time to request it be sent to her, and it as yet to arrive.

LET’S CELEBRATE

I was lucky enough to have not one but two baby showers. I actually find being the centre of attention really uncomfortable in every day life – put me on stage and I relish it, but in ‘real life’ it causes me great anxiety.

My two very good friends Madi and Siran organized a lovely and relaxed Sunday afternoon at our house with both our male and female friends to celebrate all things baby and Andrew’s Aunt Liz hosted a more traditional shower for family and some close female friends.

Baby and I were completely spoilt across both occasions and they also served as a lovely reminder of how blessed Andrew and I are with the people in our lives who support us.

Editor’s note: Bronwen and Andrew welcomed little George into the world on 5 of October – healthy and happy and very, very cute! 

bronwen and george

Bronwen Stead

Bronwen loves to celebrate life and all things Canberra, which is why she is passionate about writing for HerCanberra and promoting the amazing people and activities that Canberra contains. She is a mother, wife and a creative with a passion for wellbeing and health. More about the Author

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