My pregnancy journey: Trimester 3

6 min reading time

If you haven’t read the first three parts of this series, start with my Trimester 0 blog here first.

June brought the third trimester, and with it came my birthday and a shift in all of the things inside and out. We headed down to the Gold Coast for a couple of nights and enjoyed a bed that felt like a cloud, a massage, buffet breakfast and being switched off for a couple of days. I wrapped up with clients at the end of July to take leave and otherwise felt pretty good. However, I was definitely feeling pregnant! Here’s what went down in the third trimester.

For one, sleeping became more uncomfortable due to needing to sleep on my left side exclusively. I watched my FitBit tracker sleep trend down and down throughout the last 3 months. My deep sleep is almost non-existent and in the last month particularly, insomnia popped up a few times. I got so sick of hearing people say “oh, it’s just preparing you for the baby”. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t suck now. On the plus side, my heart rate went down steadily in the last month too.

I started postpartum meal prep and filled our freezer with pulled pork, beef and liver lasagne, breakfast burritos, lactation cookies, hearty soups and stews. I made a pecan molasses slice and stocked up on frozen salmon and fruit, broth concentrate and postpartum supplements and teas. I definitely didn’t do this all at once either, but added things to my regular weekly meal shop and prep here and there. I also wrote a list for Scott to take to the store on the first weekend he needs to shop without me. I trust him completely, and it’s still nice to be prepared.

Around week 26-28 sometime, my iron levels bottomed out and threw my doctor into panic mode. The thing about being a qualified holistic practitioner is that I know the reference ranges for things like iron and what might impact them. Iron requirements aren’t the same between trimesters let alone between pregnant and non-pregnant women. My iron levels were low but that’s because my body was using my iron instead of storing it. Making a whole new human being’s cardiovascular system takes effort, after all. My midwife recommended perhaps not going back to the GP after all the searching for problems.

The hardest thing for me has probably been reflux. In my previous posts I’ve mentioned the sugar/carb sensitivity, and it extended to too much acid, liquid, or too much/little of any food. If I let myself get too hungry or eat too much, reflux (and the balance is harder with ADHD, IYKYK). I tried ACV first thing in the morning and before meals. I tried digestive enzymes. I tried using ZenGest essential oil which works for everything else. I tried ginger. I tried bicarb. I tried peppermint. The only thing that worked was QuickEze and even that didn’t always work, and I also hated taking it because I know it affects your stomach acid and microbiome. Sometimes though, it was the only way I could sleep.

We bought a family car, mainly because the two cars we have already were going to be either too small or too… well, fast. While we were waiting for it to arrive the capsule got installed into the small car and meant the passenger princess (that’s me) had limited room. We kept it fairly minimal with baby stuff; a side of bed cot, folding change table, pram and the car capsule that we hired for 6 months. Friends and family have been so generous with clothes and accessories that we’ve been able to keep it minimal.

We’ve definitely gone about the preparation differently to many couples. For instance, we attended a breastfeeding class together. If you’ve read anything about how to breastfeed or have engaged a doula or midwife, you will likely find this a waste of your time. Ours was 4 hours that we’ll never get back. We also had a co-ed baby shower and pre-baby photos together because it’s Scott becoming a parent too.

Not so minimal; baby’s movements, my belly button, how prevalent my freckles are, the disruption to my gut motility — think about a baby resting on your bowel and how that might impact things — and the amount of time I spent with a sinus infection (I thought I’d be breathing easy once bub dropped but not so much), and the nasal congestion is real. These are all pretty common side-effects of pregnancy, and I still felt like I didn’t really have it that bad.

Around 6 weeks prior to our estimated due date I suddenly realised that we were about to have another human being in our lives that we would need to look after 24/7 and never be alone again. Not in an anxiety way but in a “holy shit this is going to change everything” kind of way. Did I have a little bit of anxiety around how childbirth was going to go? Sure. Given the actual physical process of childbirth was one of my largest fears during my life before this, I did have a little apprehension about it. Trusting myself, my body, my partner and my birth team really makes a difference. Also, not listening to people’s horror stories. Stop telling pregnant women these things, the chances are so small and honestly the stress and anxiety makes it worse and more likely that something will go wrong.

After saying that though… what felt like a super easy pregnancy right up until the end has really tested me physically this last week or so. Waking up in a pool of sweat with a blood nose, bowel issues, lightning crotch and ligament pain, insomnia and restlessness, swollen breasts, sore back and joints, and some practice contractions too. I’m still walking but very slowly. I still have emotional/mental patience but physically I’m starting to get over it. The hospital bag is packed and ready when we are…

Things that have helped in trimester 3:

  • Electrolytes – LMNT and Sodii brands that I ordered from Electrolytes Australia
  • Raspberry leaf tea and the date bites from the fruit section of the supermarket
  • Ancestral Nutrition Beef Liver capsules to keep that iron up, just in case
  • doTERRA Essential oils – EasyAir, Helichrysum for sinus, Vetiver & Lavender for sleep.
  • Snack city – I’m a hobbit, needing first and second breakfast, elevenses and all the rest.
  • Quickeze – as much as I’ve hated it, I’ve needed it to survive.
  • Stretching and walking (slowly) and twice-weekly baths for my muscles as they shift.
  • Yoghurt and ice-cream – high protein varieties like YoPro and Siggi’s for late night snacks

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