The not so glamorous side of pregnancy – PART 3!

So I am now deep into my 3rd trimester and oh what a 3rd trimester it’s been! I’m currently measuring 3-4 weeks ahead (which explains why it looks like I am growing a wildebeest!) and sadly suffering from severe PGP (Pelvic Girdle Pain). Also I had to have a tooth removed which was NOT fun… this will be my last pregnancy for MANY reasons but one of them is to save the teeth!!!!

Let me talk you through the pure joys of the last 10+ weeks since my last blog…..

Pregnant woman holding her 2 year old daughter
Hannah & daughter Hollie

Counting Kicks

From 28-30 weeks onwards you are told to start monitoring/counting kicks – this can become quite obsessive and worrying if you suddenly realise at 11pm you haven’t felt your baby move as much as normal – probably because you’ve been so busy you’ve not had a chance to even think! For me in this second pregnancy, the baby is a tai quan dao master already and doesn’t STOP kicking so it’s not been too hard but in my last pregnancy I went to hospital quite a few times for reduced movements. Every time, everything was absolutely fine but ALWAYS go in and get checked out if you are at all concerned! Also try drinking something sweet, playing music to your tummy, eating, lying on your side… but my go too was to always ring the antenatal clinic and get seen (whilst eating all the chocolate on the way there!)

Heartburn

What in the pure hell is this and why does it feel like your throat is on fire and a heart attack is pending?! I didn’t have this AT ALL in my first pregnancy but when I first experienced it in this pregnancy, I almost got my husband to call 999 (I am quite dramatic sometimes…..!) When I described to him the symptoms he very casually said ‘’Nah you’re alright it’s just heartburn’’

JUST… HEARTBURN…. YOU SAY?!? Maybe he should drink fire and see what it feels like…… ANYWAY, a bit of Gaviscon and it goes pretty quick but try to eat little and often and keep some Gaviscon gel sachets with you at all times.. sometimes I get it when I’ve just had a drink of water!

Personal Grooming…..

Well now this is a laugh… any sort of personal grooming for myself is now taken up by my dear husband.

‘Maintenance’ is physically impossible now, not only because you cannot see a thing but also, if you have a Mount Everest bump like mine your arm simply cannot reach down far enough to tackle anything! I book in my weekly slot with my husband and I have to say – he is a pro at keeping things smooth now! It can be a bit awkward at first but after him being down the business end at my first birth… we have nothing to hide and he’s seen A LOT worse!!!

Pressure… (and I’m not just talking about the uterus pressure….!)

I have already come under fire about breastfeeding in this pregnancy. You may remember from my first blog post that I was told I was overweight in this pregnancy… well.. I can’t stop thinking about that so every time I see my midwife… I cry about it. At my 26 week appointment.. I was saying my PGP (Pelvic Girdle Pain) is getting bad and I can hardly walk and I’m so worried about putting on more weight… her first response….

‘’Will you be breastfeeding this baby as you can burn up to 500 calories a day so will be easy to lose the weight if you breastfeed…’’ I couldn’t believe it… this is the same midwife that saw me struggle desperately trying to breastfeed my first! I have to say, in this pregnancy, I am putting no pressure on myself to breastfeed.. I’d like to try and will certainly give it a good go BUT if I can’t do it.. that’s totally okay… I can lose the weight in many other ways and my baby (and me!) will be happy, fine and fed!

Some other delightful symptoms:

Extreme tiredness – this I totally forgot about! Having a baby in COVID and being furloughed was a dream as I could nap whenever I wanted, have lie ins every day… this time round I have to fight to stay awake all day every day. I was prescribed iron tablets as my levels were low and since taking them it has helped slightly BUT the tiredness is real – get those naps in whenever you can ladies!!

Swollen Feet/Hands – I haven’t experienced swollen feet yet but my wedding rings are already off and stashed away now due to my fingers swelling, it hasn’t helped it’s been so hot but this can all kick in around this time (or even before!)

Waddling – if this was an Olympic sport I would be winning gold every.single.time. Its laughable sometimes when you can see your reflection in a car door as you waddle down the street – it’s to compensate for the growing bump but also with PGP (pelvic girdle pain)… it’s the only way you can walk! Embrace it!

The Dropsies –I have become quite clumsy in my pregnancy now and drop things all the time… the only problem with that is I can no longer pick said things up… from now on.. anything that falls on the floor… is lost to me!

Sweating – Now, its hasn’t helped that we have had one of the hottest summers since records began BUT the sweating is unreal… in the peak of the heat I was showering 3+ times a day and not leaving the house! I would have aircon and a fan on me at night whilst my husband wrapped up in a winter thick duvet…! I now carry a very handy fan that clips onto anything and it’s a dream for around the house/out and about!

Pelvic Girdle Pain

This for me, is the hardest symptom/condition of them all and is very much not just affecting me physically but emotionally too. I didn’t really know what it was as you don’t hear it that often but now I have it myself it really is a debilitating condition and if you haven’t experienced it then it’s very hard to understand as physically (apart from the huge bump and the waddle) the person looks fine. I have gotten to the point now where I can hardly walk, sleep, sit or even just simply stand without being in A LOT of pain. I have been told to go on crutches and even a wheelchair/bed rest now but with looking after a 2 year old, working, day to date life… those options are impossible! I have been prescribed stronger painkillers but this can affect the babys heart/lungs when born and can even cause addiction in the baby…. I only take one at night if the pain is really severe that I cannot even get into bed but it makes you feel so guilty every time you take one.

My husband has started sleeping on the sofa as I wake him up every time I turn as I literally yelp in pain, he has to do almost everything for our 2 year old which makes you feel like an utter failure and you do feel like a prisoner in your own body almost…bring out the violins and tissues!! BUT… with the right HANDS ON help, which I am hopefully now getting, it can be managed. I have stupidly, and due to finances, unavoidably, waited for NHS physio which took 11 weeks for my first appointment, and I’ve had to wait 4 weeks for my second (which I am due to have next week!) – if you can afford too.. seek help as soon as possible! The sooner you get the help the better control of the pain you will have and the long term effects will be next to none! Physio, Osteopath and Chiropractors are all people to go and see and if one doesn’t help move on to another! My mother-in-law has booked and paid for me to see an Osteopath this week and I am praying it can relieve some pain – just try anything you can and don’t leave it so late like I have (although it is never too late to seek help!!) Also… an exercise ball will be your saviour – when I sit on this, I feel no pain!! Also, a support belt! I would also recommend looking at Pelvic Partnership online – this is an NHS funded charity which gives you all sorts of helpful tips/links to help combat the pain as much as possible! I think I have rambled on enough now for this blog…. I shall be writing another one in a few weeks’ time as I am due to have a scan at 36 weeks to determine if I have to have a C-section or not. I will have a scan first to see size/weight of baby, then a consultation after to discuss my options. I shall be sure to share this with you all PLUS how I got on with my Osteopath and any other glamours symptoms that come my way including leaking nipples, insane hormones and the upset tummies…..! I shall also run through some baby essentials and hospital bag packing – the fun never stops!!

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