As I sit down to write this I am 38 weeks and 3 days pregnant which I can hardly believe myself! This pregnancy has flown by but I’m also so ready for a glass of rose and deli sandwich. Randomly, I had about 10 girlfriends all with due dates within two weeks of mine and they’ve ALL had their babies while I’m still very pregnant. Don’t get me wrong, I’m super grateful to carry this baby to full term but with the weather heating up, I’m getting more and more uncomfortable at this late stage.
A few weeks back, I asked everyone on IG to submit questions for this Q&A and these were a few of the most commonly asked.
How is baby? What has the fetal heart rate been?I feel very fortunate to say that my entire pregnancy has been pretty smooth and baby appears to be in good health. Knock on wood! This may be counterintuitive – and Kevin thinks I’m just being pessimistic – but I’m starting to get wary about the delivery because it all feels too good to be true. I like to think that I’m just super realistic about the entire process and just how many variables exist from conception all the way through to baby’s arrival.
As for fetal heart rate, it has been ~140 beats per minute on average. It varies every appointment but if anything, it’s usually lower and somewhere in the 130’s. I did ask the doctor about any correlation between fetal heart rate and gender and she said there is none. So much for that theory.
Do you still not know the sex?Nope! There haven’t been any slip ups and Kevin and I are still pretty steadfast in thinking it’s another girl. If anything, I feel more and more the same as my first pregnancy. Same cravings, same weight gain, same bump shape, etc.
Are you still working out?Yes but I’ve slowed way down and I stopped riding the Peloton Bike around 35 weeks. My left hip has been really bothering me and I thought it might have something to do with my form on the bike as my belly grew and my legs starting pointing outward. That’s not verified by anything other than my own suspicion and I will say, it hasn’t stopped hurting since I stopped riding so maybe they aren’t correlated. These days I aim for just one or two days a week and I still use the Peloton App but I focus mostly on weight/circuit training, go at my own pace and modify when an exercise doesn’t work for me.
How are your energy levels in the third trimester?I’ve felt more of a physical slowdown in the sense that I can’t physically move my body as fast but energy-wise I feel pretty good. I am slightly overwhelmed by my own doing with a bunch of to-do’s I’d like to check off before the baby arrives but I’m trying to balance that with work, my own self care and spending quality time with Palmer and Kevin. Generally, I’ve accepted that I have an active mind that’s difficult to turn off and so when I find myself awake at 3AM, I usually try to take advantage of that quiet time to get things done.
Do you have a birth plan?I’m just hoping the baby and I come out on the other side alert & healthy. I know for some people a birth plan can act as a goal or form of motivation but for me personally, it opens the door to be disappointed about some aspect of the labor and delivery process. Setting expectations for something with so many variables I can’t necessarily control just adds a layer of stress to the entire process that I don’t care to experience. Ultimately, I trust the doctors and what they say is best for me and the baby.
In a perfect world, I will have a quick, unmedicated, vaginal birth but we all know reality isn’t perfect. Heck, I’d also like to win the lottery.
Are you planning to do maternity pictures?Yes! I had them taken at 34 weeks and I did an entire blog post about who I worked with and what I wore here.
Can you provide an update on favorite maternity clothes?I actually haven’t purchased any maternity clothes this pregnancy outside of a few new pairs of jeans from my Maternity Jeans Review post. I actually thought I’d need more this time around living in Chicago but I honestly think COVID helped since we’ve had less events, functions and social commitments so I ended up rewearing a lot of outfits or force fitting certain pieces that could be considered just a little too short/small but no one knows the difference since I’m mostly at home all day.
New pregnancy symptoms in the third trimester?Pregnancy is definitely catching up to me and slowing me down but I’m still pretty fortunate when it comes to pregnancy symptoms. I have had a few bad cases of indigestion/acid reflux but I think I’ve narrowed the culprit down to garlic and tomato sauce so now I just try to avoid that combo whenever possible. That plus some hip and back pain on my left side is about the extent of my symptoms.
What did you decide about being induced?Honestly, I’m still a little torn on the topic. We set an induction date of June 11 with our doctor but I’m still hoping the baby decides to come naturally. That said, work is a little crazy at the moment and I’m really hoping to make it past June 9 so that’s a pretty small window. My doctor did say she doesn’t recommend the castor oil since it can cause inflammation which isn’t good for the baby.
Are you planning to take maternity leave?Yes but probably less than three months. Technically I don’t qualify for short term disability or FMLA since I haven’t been with my current company long enough but I do have paid time off and paid parental leave that I can take on top of a good amount of unpaid time. It’s not ideal but I also didn’t expect much when I accepted the job.
Do you have any new pregnancy cravings?Believe it or not, I’m off the Mint Oreos and decaf green tea. Maybe it’s the warmer weather or maybe it’s pregnancy related but I’ve moved on to Breyers Vanilla Chocolate ice cream. Although I’m a bit particular because I prefer mostly the vanilla with just a little scoop of chocolate so our supply is always slightly unbalanced.
Are you planning a second nursery or reusing Palmer’s?Palmer will stay in her room but we’re planning to transition her to a big girl bed in a few months and move the crib up to the new nursery. We’re planning to reuse the crib, rocking chair and side table from Palmer’s nursery but a good amount will be new – in both of their rooms. I’m taking my time with both though because the baby will sleep in our room for the first few weeks and so much is currently on backorder still.
Hopefully that answers most of your questions! As I mentioned in my first Pregnancy Q&A, I love reading other people’s experiences while pregnant and I hope that by sharing mine you realize just how unique everyone’s individual situation is and there’s truly no right or wrong way to go about pregnancy!