third trimester

The Ending, Round Two | Third Trimester Recap

Goodbye, Second Trimester! What a rough 13 weeks…there really is no other way to phrase it.

When we hit that third trimester, a wave of relief and dread hit. Relief because I was inching my way closer to full term. Dread because I knew that the longer I stayed pregnant, the sicker I would become…

Month 7

Between the end of the week 23 and week 28, I went from daily doctor appointments to weekly to twice per week. From about week 22 on, I started showing signs of preeclampsia again. Swelling, kidney infections, headaches, vomiting, exhaustion, high blood pressure and/or inconsistent blood pressure…it was horrible. 

At 26 weeks, I was doing a weekly Non Stress Test and biophysical ultrasound to monitor the baby. Contractions at this point were consistent at 25 minutes apart. 

At 28 weeks and 1 day, I went in for a growth scan and glucose test. Long story short, baby looked great, but a bit large and I failed my glucose test. I opted to test my blood sugar 3x per day instead of going through the 3 hour test. They agreed that I could do that, IF I record my food choices along with my numbers AND email them to the doctor before any appointment. I agreed. 

The big positive during this time, aside from seeing Baby of course was Halloween and going to the Army v. Air Force game with friends! 

Month 8

At 30 weeks and 3 days, we went to a brunch to celebrate ALL the November birthdays within our friend group! We had a great time, but I was SO swollen, uncomfortable and my preeclampsia symptoms were slowly increasing in severity. 

This month, aside from having consistent contractions and dislocated ribs, was fairly mellow…until week 35 that is.

Dr appt.–high bp into hospital immediately

Just got back from my appointment. The baby looks good on the monitor and my levels all are stable, although it’s on the higher side of normal. I am officially in the books to be induced on 1/14/20, as long as nothing crazy happens. If something happens (my blood pressure gets high again, the baby needs to get out earlier, my swelling worsens, Etc.), I will be induced earlier. They wanted me to get in the books because it’s easier to move my date to an earlier time once I’m in the system. 

quote that I sent to Mike, updating him

All that being said, I am almost 2 cm dilated and 50% effaced. The doctor said she’d be surprised if I made it to 39 weeks with the amount of contractions that I’m having and the progress that they are making. Last week (12/16/19), in the hospital, I was 0 cm and 0% effaced”

Month 9

On December 27, my contractions were consistently every 3 minutes. I went to Labor and Delivery and was informed that I’d be given medication to stop contractions. After talking through my concerns, my doctor, nurses, and I decided against medications. They’d give my body 3 hours to stop contracting before revisiting giving medications…when they got to, and stayed at, 7-9 minutes apart they let us go home to rest…at 3:30AM.

I had my L&D follow up and regular OB appointment on the same day. On December 30, my blood pressure was quite high. The follow up doctor’s goal was simple…make it to Thursday’s appointment. I’d continue to track my blood pressure and diabetes, and if anything felt bad or got high, I’d be delivering. If I could make it to Thursday, we’d be moving my induction date up. I’m seeing the same doctor that I saw today and she said that if I’m feeling the same way and having similar blood pressure readings, they will induce me by Sunday.

On Thursday, January 2, my induction rescheduled for the 7th at 7PM.

On January 4, around 1:33PM, I was feeling REALLY bad. I had a horrible headache, was vomitting, the swelling was increasing, vision was worsening, and could not keep my eyes open. All of that and my blood pressure was lower than ever before. EVERY. THING. HURT.

By 2:53, I was in the hospital, getting blood work drawn, some pain management, and monitoring baby.

At 7:03, I texted my parents with an update, that you’ll read in a second. Between 2:53 and 7:03 the following happened…Keep in mind that Mike was home until 5PM taking care of M3.

They gave me phenergan to help with the vomiting and headache and are going to see what that does. I can’t drive with it in my system and they still aren’t sure what the doctor is going to do. the doctor to admit me, but the nurse doesn’t think it’s safe for me and the baby to go home. The meds they gave me aren’t touching the nausea and headache and my BP is still all over the place. We’re waiting to hear back with official word from the doctor/high risk team, but they told Mike to come with a bag and no baby.

Text update that I sent my parents

7:03 PM I was officially admitted to Labor and Delivery and moved out of triage. I received medication to help with pain and force me to get some sleep. At this point, the plan was to re-evaluate at 5AM. If I still felt horrible or things get worse overnight, they’d induce.

At 4AM on Janurary 5th, we started the induction!

General Info

Weight: I have gained about 40 pounds, total. Way less than M3’s pregnancy, but still WAY more than I had hoped for.

Going to the chiropractor during this pregnancy has been SO helpful. I can’t recommend it enough!

Cravings/Aversions: At this point, I have a VERY limited appetite. Nothing sounded great, except for Christmas Eve dinner. I had steak for the first time in YEARS.

Sleep: If I could sleep all day, every day, I think I would. I am exhausted!

Now, I sleep whenever M3 sleeps. Naps? Check! His bedtime? Check! When he’s awake (if I have another adult in the house with him)? Check! I can NOT get enough sleep. It’s a bit ridiculous!

Medications: Prenatal with methylated folate (3 pills/day), Baby Aspirin (81mg AM), Zyrtec (10mg AM), Pepcid (20 mg AM, 20 mg PM), Bonjesta (anti-nausea (1 pill PM), Magnesium (200mg PM), Potassium (200mg PM), Macrobid (general antibiotic for kidney infection), Amoxicillin (for the ear infection), Z-PAK and inhaler (bronchitis), glyburide (1 pill/day).

sign off!
second trimester

The Middle, Round Two| Second Trimester Recap

Goodbye, Second Trimester! What a rough 13 weeks…there really is no other way to phrase it.

Month 4

We found out that Baby Devens #2 is a B-O-Y!!! To say we were/are excited to have another little boy running around with M3, is an understatement! The subchronic hematoma that we found in Month 1, has slowly started healing itself, which was comforting to hear.

During a visit this month, we also learned that I may require a C-section because my placenta is too close to the birth canal opening. At first, even though I know there is nothing I can do, I was totally against it.

As you’ll see in just a minute, though, the deeper we got into the second trimester, the more I started coming around to the idea of a C-section over a vaginal birth.

Month 5

We travelled a LOT this summer and spent almost 2 weeks of Month 5 in New York visiting my family. At this point, I had recovered as much as I was going to from the mono and was feeling significantly better…little did I know that it wouldn’t last long.

At 21 weeks and 3 days, I was admitted into the hospital. I was having severe back and left side pain, no appetite, and was exhausted. It turned out that I had acute pyelonephritis (kidney infection) and a dislocated rib…sounds fun, right? I spent 4 nights in the hospital and then almost every day at a doctor’s office for the next 5 days with follow up appointments.

Month 6

About 2 weeks into my kidney recovery, I developed a cold which quickly turned into bronchitis and an ear infection, which then led to an intercostal muscle strain (rib muscle strain).

Last trimester, and even into my fourth month of pregnancy, I would have told you that this pregnancy was easier in ways that my last pregnancy wasn’t. Today, as I sit here writing this, I can safely say that this pregnancy is SO much harder and has come with SO MANY challenges that we just weren’t prepared for.

Not only did I get sick, but my husband got a cold and M3 developed a cold, pink eye, and a severe case of constipation. Poor kid!

General Info

Weight: I have gained about 15 pounds, so far, thanks to being sick and not having a good appetite. The swelling in my hands, feet, and face are slowing getting worse and more uncomfortable. Hopefully, fingers crossed, it doesn’t get NEARLY as pain as it was during M3’s pregnancy!

Going to the chiropractor and physical therapy during this pregnancy has been SO helpful. I can’t recommend both options enough!

Cravings/Aversions: At this point, I can eat just about anything anything. I don’t have the aversions that I had at the beginning of this pregnancy, but I probably just jinxed myself.

As for cravings, I am still loving bell peppers and have one almost every day. M3 and I also share an green apple most days; mine with a little bit of peanut butter, but I’m not sure if that’s a true craving or habit at this point.

Sleep: If I could sleep all day, every day, I think I would. I am exhausted. during the fourth month and half of the fifth month, I had a small burst of energy between illnesses. I got a decent amount done during each of M3’s naps while still being able to be available to him when he was awake. It was amazing.

Now, I sleep whenever he sleeps. Naps? Check! His bedtime? Check! When he’s awake (if I have another adult in the house with him)? Check! I can NOT get enough sleep. It’s ridiculous!

If it wasn’t for the second trimester pregnancy insomnia and/or having a pre-toddler, I’d be sleeping all day, every day!

Medications: Prenatal with methylated folate (3 pills/day), Baby Aspirin (81mg AM), Zyrtec (10mg AM), Pepcid (20 mg AM, 20 mg PM), Bonjesta (anti-nausea (1 pill PM), Magnesium (200mg PM), Potassium (200mg PM), Macrobid (general antibiotic for kidney infection), Amoxicillin (for the ear infection), Z-PAK and inhaler (bronchitis)

sign off!
first trimester

The Beginning, Round Two| First Trimester Recap

Round two! Ah, the First Trimester is officially over! Thank you, God! Unlike our first, first trimester, the 13 weeks of pregnancy flew by! I was sticker than you’d believe, exhausted, and taking care of a baby. I do mean a baby. During these first 13 weeks, M3, was 6-9 months old.

Month 1

First, let’s get this out of the way. Yes, this baby was planned. We do know this baby and M3 will, at most, be 15.5 months apart. Yes, it’s crazy, but we are THRILLED! Okay, let’s move on!

We got our first positive test on May 20th, 2019. I was 4 weeks and 5 days along! I went to our clinic every 3 days to test my HCG and Progesterone levels from May 20th to May 30th. On May 29th, we had our first ultrasound, heard the heartbeat, and breathed a little sigh of relief.

Unfortunately, during our Memorial Day Weekend Camping trip, I bled…a lot. So much so that I was convinced that we were going to miscarry. It turns out that we did not, thankfully. On the 29th, during the ultrasound, we found out that I have a sub-chorionic hematoma that was causing the bleed.

Month 2

I don’t quite remember when it was, but sometime between months 1 and 2 I found out that I had mono for the second time and probably had it longer than I’d been pregnant. I was told to rest, drink water, and try to eat because I was losing weight a little too fast for comfort.

Between 7 and 8 weeks, I found out that I some how contracted the flu.

We continued to have regular ultrasounds, with the fertility clinic, until we hit the 10-week mark.

Month 3

At the 10-week mark, we were transferred to the high risk OBGYN office that delivered M3.

At 12 weeks, they confirmed that I still had mono and that I was dealing with the flu…again. Yes, for the second time! I was informed that I would likely be this sick throughout the remainder of my pregnancy. Thank you, low immune system!

We took a bunch of blood to test all sorts of different things (thyroid, liver, mono virus), an additional basic CBC, a partial chromosome test, etc. You name it they probably tested me for it! Everything, except the Epstein-Barr virus (mono) came back normal.

Baby’s ultrasound looked great! Heart rate of 175. Good fluid levels. The hemorrhage was healing.

General Info:

Weight: I’m looking at the scale this time around…for now. Being only 6 months postpartum (a 2 months post surgery) when I got pregnant means that I was well above my goal/previous starting weight. Thus far, I’ve only gained about 4.5-6 pounds, depending on the week. It is a very nice change of pace, but I’m still seeing changes in the size of my hands, feet, and face. Swelling, puffy, round.

Cravings/Aversions: I can NOT eat peanut butter chocolate ice cream and any type of meat. I can prepare, cook, and smell meat with no problems! Ask me to eat it and I get physically sick. The only way I’ve been able to have chicken is if it’s in chicken and rice/noodle soup. Even then, though, I can’t think about what I’m eating.

My appetite because of pregnancy, having mono, and having the flu has been close to nonexistent. When I’m hungry, though, I want a cold sweet bell pepper…or 10. It’s not unusual for me to have at least 6 peppers in a single week.

Sleep: Because I have been so sick during this first trimester I am trying to sleep as much as possible. Typically, I fall asleep on the couch, around 8PM. I’ll wake up and get into bed around 9:30PM and almost immediately fall asleep. I will sleep until the baby gets up usually around 6:30AM. For a while, I was sleeping during both of his naps; now I only sleep during one.

On the weekends, my husband will get up with the baby and let me sleep in a bit. I will still nap when baby naps and usually fall asleep earlier. I can not wait to be back to a relatively normal, adult sleep schedule!

Medications: Same exact medications as my last pregnancy’s first trimester. Prednisone (10mg AM, 5mg PM), Heparin injections (5000IU/twice a day), Progesterone (200mg PM), Prenatal with methylated folate (3 pills/day), Baby Aspirin (81mg AM), Zyrtec (10mg AM), Pepcid (20 mg AM, 20 mg PM), Bonjesta (anti-nausea (1 pill PM), Magnesium (200mg PM)

Misc.: Just like the prior pregnancy’s first trimester, my nails need to be kept short or they will break, spilt, or bend. My hair, also, went from fine and growing back (hello, baby hairs!) to fine, limp, heavily falling out, and oilier than normal. …Yay…!

sign off!

Must Haves | Third Trimester

Full disclosure, I’m pre-writing this at 36 weeks pregnant. I have a puppy laying down at my feet and another at my side. Both of whom are softly, and occasionally, barking (or grunting) at the garbage men outside of our house. You’ve got to love a good couple of guard dogs! 🙂

I’m pre-writing this so that I can focus on Baby Boy once he comes and because I have a feeling he his coming sooner than we think. I woke up the other morning thinking that his birthday is right around the corner–it’s such a weird feeling!

ANYWAY, back to the topic at hand! My third trimester must haves!

If you are curious about what my first and second trimester must have were, click on the blue links. It’ll take you right to those pages! 

Like I say during all things pregnancy, every pregnancy is different and what works for one may not work for another. In the spirit of sharing, though, here are my third trimester updates!

Let’s just jump right into it and get what makes me red in the face out of the way!

Sanitary pads. Yes, I went there and yes they are indeed a MUST have. As you’ve probably already read about, we thought my water had broken around week 32. Holy, liquid! Prior to this week, I had been purchasing panty liners to give me a sense of confidence and comfort. From week 32 on, I’ve upgraded to a “light flow” pad. I still can’t quite believe I’m typing this! 

I’ve been sticking to the Always and Kotex brands, but it’s all about preference.

NOW! On to the more socially acceptable items.

First up, compression socks. These awful things were introduced into my life around week 34 because of all the swelling. I should have probably wore them sooner…hindsight. I bought ones from Target that they no longer carry and really am not a fan. They’re hot,  slide down constantly, and rip easily. Invest in some heavier duty ones, if you need them. I’m sure Amazon has some good quality ones. 

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Can anyone say swollen legs?!

While, I truly despise the socks, in general, they do their job well. I have so much swelling that when the time comes to remove them I have an almost 1/2 inch indent in my leg. It’s quite the look!

The next two items go hand-in-hand, in my mind. Comfortable clothing and shoes. Luckily (?), I’ve been pregnant in the summer months and can get away with loose clothing and flip-flops or canvas shoes. My go-to clothing items are dresses or light fitting sweatpants and t-shirts. Comfort is really the only thing I consider now. Especially, since finding things that completely covers my belly is almost impossible right now!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been stopped at stores to be told part of my stomach was showing. 

As for my shoes, I alternate between these flip-flops and canvas shoes. The flip-flops were a new pregnancy find and have the right amount of support and give. Once I am back to my not pregnant shoe size, I’ll be purchasing them for normal wear. As for the canvas shoes, I’ve been buying them of a couple of years now and love how comfortable they are. I pair them with EVERYTHING shorts, pants, and dresses. I also don’t care if they get dirty looking because I can quickly wash them or just buy a new pair since they are only $6!

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The BEST canvas shoes and sweatpants!

My next must have is a relatively inexpensive item. Tissues! Really, I’ve needed them all the time, throughout this pregnancy, but this last trimester especially. I am so congested ALL. THE. TIME! My nose is bigger, my face feels heavier, and I think I sound sick 24/7. I’m told that this is just another part of pregnancy. Wow! Noo, thank you.

My FINAL must have item is ice water. I tend to drink a lot of water, even when I’m not pregnant. This pregnancy though I’ve routinely drank AT LEAST a gallon a day. Yes, the bathroom runs are outrageous. I have a 32 oz water bottle, that I purchased about a year or so ago. It came with an infuser that I no longer have, and never used, but I fill this guy up almost halfway with water and guzzle down. Then, I eat the partially melted ice. IT. IS. HEAVEN! I think it’s also one of, if not the only, thing that has made this summer remotely bearable.

What have been some of your third trimester must haves? I’m especially curious about those who’ve been heavily pregnant throughout the summer!

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The End | Third Trimester Recap

Month 7

We rang in the third trimester, and week 27, celebrating the 4th of July! He his moving around like crazy and reacts strongly to any loud noise. This, as you can imagine is quite uncomfortable for me as he’s running out of space!

Can someone explain to me why we have to deal with hot flashes and itchy skin?! There are days that I am so exhausted and itchy that I don’t realize I’ve scratched through the surface of my skin! Thank you, PUPPS. We are so glad you’re here…On a more grateful note, thank you Benadryl!

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During this month, I had to deal with the NASTY Gestational Diabetes test. I don’t care what ANYONE tells you–it’s horrible. You can do it, but it’s HORRIBLE! 55 minutes into the hour you have to wait before the blood draw, I almost got sick. As they were taking my blood, I did. Thank goodness, they could still use the blood collected. At this appointment, I also got my TDap and Rhogam shots, and had extra blood drawn to get on my liver. I was fortunate enough to pass both the diabetes test and the liver draw.

We also had to deal with what the doctor later termed as “severe Braxton Hicks”. I had contractions one night from 1900 to 0300. Luckily, they were just inconsistent enough that we were under the threshold for having to go into the hospital that night.

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Month 8

The start of month 8 was ROUGH. My anxiety and  sense of overwhelm skyrocketed and everything felt impossible. Dealing with the dishwasher, running errands, cooking…You name it, I felt like I couldn’t do it.

Let’s not even dig into body image issues! Every inch of me was under scrutiny by me, myself, and I.

At 30 weeks, we redid our anatomy scan. He looked great and we were able to see everything necessary to check off the doctor’s boxes. Even though we received great news, he was very uncooperative and the scan took much longer than it should have. After consulting with my doctors and therapist, we increased the Zoloft to 100 mg. We also kicked off our Child Preparation classes. Holy information!

32 weeks came with quite a scare! We had our scheduled doctor’s appointment, but, late the night before, I had started leaking fluid and having mild Braxton Hick’s contractions. I was examined at the appointment, they took samples of the fluid, checked on baby, and told me they’d be in touch. We were able to rule out that the fluid was urine, which was strangely disappointing.

The next day, I called to get the results and to update them that I was still leaking fluid and the contractions were closer together. They had yet to receive all of the results and told us to go to Labor and Delivery ASAP. While at the hospital, we “learned” that I was indeed having contractions about every 15 minutes, with cramping and pressure in between each one. Luckily, baby’s heart rate was unaffected, but we still needed the test results. We got the results and found out it wasn’t amniotic fluid or urine. They watched us a little longer and then sent us home.

On the way home I got a call from the doctor saying that I was to start modified bed rest, but they’d prefer me to stay horizontal more often than not to decrease the chance of pre-term labor.

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Month 9

Weeks 32 and 33 were bed rest weeks. Holy boredom and…yeah, boredom! Baby was moving so much and my back is KILLING me! It felt like someone was constantly pulling me forward from the belly button which is hurting my lower back. The only thing I wanted to do was to get up and walk around.

I also started feeling sick for a few hours everyday, which is not fun. It doesn’t seem to matter what I’ve done, eat, drink, etc. I have a feeling that my morning sickness is back and staying. The PUPPS is, also, out in full force and I’ve never felt so defeated.

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The 2 biggest excitements this month were getting off bedrest at 34 weeks and taking our maternity photos!

When we made it to our goal of 34 weeks, the doctor’s decided to let me off the bed rest hook. I couldn’t have been happier! Because Baby is still measuring in the 98 percentile, we will do a growth scan at our 36 week appointment. Depending on what they see, we will discuss our birthing options.

On August 27th, I was in the hospital for another blood clot ultrasound because of all the swelling and discoloration. They, of course, didn’t find any blood clots, but told me to start wearing compression socks and elevating my legs most days now. These socks made me overheat like crazy! Anyone else experience the same thing?

We went into Labor and Delivery over Labor Day Weekend because Baby is trying to be funny! All of the sudden, I had contractions every 3-5 minutes for seven, yes seven, hours. They came hard and fast and I couldn’t get relief.

After several hours in the hospital of monitoring, getting IV fluids, and trying to change positions to get them to stop, I was given Terbutaline. This was given in a shot form and is used to slow the contractions. While it slowed them down to a good 15 to 20 minutes apart, it made me so jittery and antsy.

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A few days later, at our 36 week appointment, our doctor gave us the okay for Baby to make his entrance! They estimated that he’s about 6 pounds and 2 ounces and doubt that we will make it full term. I could have told them that.

We were quite surprised to find him so small and measuring in the 48 percentile after he’s measured in the 98 percentile this whole pregnancy. I’m not sure I trust them on his weight, as it is such a big difference, but I’m hopeful that they are right! At the appointment, we also found out that the contractions are working. I am about 1 cm dilated and 50% effaced. The best and weirdest phrasing I’ve ever been excited for!

We also found out that I did not have Group B Strep and was not anemic! They also had gotten their flu shots in that day, so I was the lucky recipient of that! Can you tell that I had (and hate) any and all needles?!?!

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36 week growth scan! Those little dots above his nose are some of his fingers

Another week, another hospital visit! My 37 week appointment was 2 days early and technically still in my 36th week. My blood pressure was still high for me, I didn’t feel good. Then, that night, I swelled so much that I couldn’t comfortably bend my hands/fingers, feet/toes/ankles. My face swelled even more, which is hard to believe that it could even happen, and got very red. They sent us to the hospital for a preeclampsia evaluation and found a some protein in my urine. They decided to send us home with a collection kit to see what my protein levels look like in a 24 hour period. At this point, it is safe to say that I was exhausted, uncomfortable, and had mentally checked out.

The results came back pretty quickly and we learned that I had elevated levels of protein, in addition to blood, in my 24 hour collection. The doctor moved up my next (38 week) appointment to monitor me more closely. 

Month 10

During the actual week 37, we got to take another trip to labor and delivery because I started having shortness of breath and my preeclampsia symptoms were getting worse. God, am I getting sick of seeing these people!

Earlier in the day, I had a follow-up appointment for the last L&D visit. At this appointment, they told me that an elevation in anything (swelling, dizziness, blood pressure, etc.) would call for induction. After going into L&D, at the doctor’s request that night, we walked out WITHOUT a baby. To say we were frustrated is an understatement! I cried the whole way home and then for several hours after. We left having to do another protein test over the weekend to see if there was elevation in the numbers.

There, of course, was an elevation in blood and protein, plus signs of an infection, and my preeclampsia was getting worse. In addition to all the symptoms, my blood pressure and resting heart rate was WAY too high for comfort.

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The Friday after this hospital visit was…interesting?! Knowing that I was still feeling unwell and mentally defeated, the husband took a half day off of work and surprised me with lunch and a variety of movies! Again, I may have cried for a bit. Ah, hormones! It was quite a nice surprise and made the rest of the day (sitting on the couch) move quickly and was WAY less lonely.

That night, I also burned my stomach while trying to help with dinner. Not, at all, a way to end the night!

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On the Monday of week 37, I had my 38 week appointment and my follow-up for the test results from the hospital. Like I said a couple of paragraphs ago, there was more blood and protein in my urine, I had signs of an infection, and the preeclampsia symptoms were getting worse. The doctors were not comfortable letting the pregnancy progress.

On Wednesday, the start of Week 38, we went into the hospital to be induced! We made it 4 weeks past our goal! Holy light at the end of the tunnel!

General Info
Weight: Yes, way more than I would have imagined. At the end of the pregnancy, I did my final doctor weigh in and found that I had gained 65 pounds. They are attributing about 30 pounds to 2 things….first, all the different medications that I’ve had to be on (steroids, hormones, etc.) and second, my inability to exercise (thanks a lot bed rest–note sarcasm). Regardless of what they told me, I was (and am) horrified at that number…
Cravings/Aversions: Cold, fizzy drinks. Seltzer water, soda…it doesn’t matter I just want the bubbles
Sleep: Horrible. I’m lucky if I get a 2 hour stretch of solid sleep between the contractions and bathroom breaks. I don’t know that I’d say I’m totally awake for either of these, but I’m definitely not asleep.
Medications: Prenatal with methylated folate (3 pills/day), Baby Aspirin (81mg AM), Zyrtec (10mg AM), Pepcid (20 mg AM), Zoloft (100mg/day), Potassium (99mg/day), Magnesium (99mg/day)
Misc.: HOLY LEG cramps. I can’t take it! I was put on potassium and magnesium pills, taking them every day. Some days I will only have a couple of cramps and other days I can’t stay still because my legs cramp, hurt, and need movement so badly.

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Must Haves | Second Trimester

Goodbye, Second Trimester! Hello, Third!

While the Second Trimester of pregnancy was better than the First, it was still quite difficult for me to get through. I had nausea/vomiting still, was exhausted, sore, swollen, and terrified that at any moment this would all be gone. It was quite a mind-F to go from “happy I’m pregnant” and feeling him move to “this is going too well” and “who’s body is this”.

Luckily, I found a few items that made this trimester easier for me to handle! Let’s start out with food and drinks since that’s really the ONLY thing I can think about for long periods of time!

Food! Need I say more? Okay, but seriously let’s welcome in the cravings. While I haven’t craved anything out of the ordinary for me, I have needed the temperature of these items to be specific. I’ve wanted apples, cantaloupe, muffins, chocolate, pretzels…any food that I was fine with eating at room temperature now needs to be COLD. Almost too cold to eat.

Like all cravings, keeping things cold has proven tricky. Trying to anticipate what I’m going to want and keeping the fridge stocked is not something I want to spend a lot of my time doing. Which, I’m sure, makes me fun to live with!

Beverage choices, on the other hand, are so weird to me. I am craving bubbly drinks, not something that I like to keep in the house unless it is seltzer. Unfortunately, seltzer just doesn’t satiate me the way a cold soda does. Unless it’s for a party, I don’t keep soda in the house; it’s a treat and I’m usually pretty stingy about consumption. Towards the end of this trimester, though, I’ve wanted a few sips every night. Yes, I’ve caved and finally bought a pack of soda, but limit myself to at most 1 per day.

Now that I’ve gotten food and drinks out of the way, I can try to concentrate on actual must have ITEMS!

First up, PILLOWS. No matter where I go (couch, bed, or chair), I need at least one pillow. Sitting up? I always keep a pillow behind my back. Elevating my legs? A pillow or two goes under my feet. Laying on the couch? I NEED two pillows at my head, one under my hip/stomach, one between my knees and possibly a pillow behind my back. Bedtime? Two pillows under my head, body pillow to mold to, and possibly another at my back. My apologies to my husband who is trying to lay or use the same area as me. 

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I am, single-handedly, getting our monies worth out of these pillows. This is new to me. I’ve always liked the look of pillows on a couch or bed, but always removed them. Now, I can’t get enough and always seem to need more!

White noise has helped me nap during the day. During the Second Trimester, I went from two naps per day to none to one nap a few times a week. I downloaded an app on my phone that has MANY white noise options and play it loudly. My alarm turns the white noise off briefly when sounding and then resumes.

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For some reason, though, I can’t play it at night. It keeps me up and makes me a bit anxious. I’ve also noticed that when I turn the white noise on, the dogs calm down and nap near me. I guess that’s one trick up my sleeve for when baby comes!

Then, there is lotion. I had to go from the Vaseline brand to Aveeno because of the Stearic Acid. I developed the PUPPS rash during the beginning of this trimester. According to my doctor, Stearic Acid  can worsen the rash and make you more miserable. I specifically started using the Aveeno Skin Relief 24-Hour Moisturizing lotion and body wash.

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Here we go again with the temperature thing, but sometimes sticking the lotion bottle in the fridge for a few minutes brings the sweetest relief.

My last, and most important, must have for the Second Trimester is a mental health professional.

DISCLAIMER: I’m not saying that every (pregnant) person needs to seek mental health help, is depressed, or anxious. This is a very person-specific topic and what works for one may not work for another, or even be necessary. 

I was diagnosed with prenatal anxiety and depression towards the end of the Second Trimester. I already have a history of anxiety, pre-pregnancy. I probably should have spoken up sooner to my doctor, but hindsight … Anyway, while medication has helped, I truly feel that talking to someone is going to make the most (long-term) change. Working on managing, intervening, and ultimately preventing anxiety/depression “flair ups” has been so beneficial that I truly wish I started earlier in the pregnancy.

What are or were some of your Second Trimester Must Haves?

alaina