At the end of my last bumper pregnancy/life update I was nearing the end of the second trimester, waiting for our shipping to arrive, my bump to ‘pop’ and slowly getting a few bits in ready for the baby’s arrival. Here’s what happened in the last few weeks as I entered the third trimester.
Weeks 28 to 30
An Unexpected Hospital Visit
I was feeling pretty cruisey at the start of the third trimester until my 30-week doctor’s appointment threw up a trace of protein in my urine. This is what they check to see if you’re at risk of developing pre-eclampsia. It’s usually accompanied by a high blood pressure but as mine was fine I was sent on my way with a reminder of the rest of the symptoms I need to look out for.
Shortly after I started to feel quite sick. I was nauseous, dizzy, often seeing stars when I got up to go to the loo and one morning noticed my fingers were suddenly swollen. I went back to the doctor’s as directed and the on-call doctor took my blood pressure. 3 times in a row it came back high and because of the other symptoms I had described I was told to go to the hospital directly.
I must have looked a little shocked at this advice as the doctor asked me “do you understand?” and I was all like “what hospital?” “The one you’re registered to give birth at dear,” she responded.
Turns out there’s a day assessment unit you can head to when things need to be checked urgently. My mum gave me a lift up there and we waited for an hour and a half while I started to feel better and fretted about being an absolute fraud. I was put in a spare delivery room and my urine and blood pressure were tested once again. Guess what, it came back completely fine.
It turns out my doctors use an electric blood pressure machine which the midwives know are not well calibrated for pregnant women. They took my blood pressure manually twice, 15 minutes apart, and it was completely fine so I was discharged with a note to tell my doctors to test my blood pressure manually and with a large cuff in future.
It was a relief to find out both baby and I were fine but man did I feel bad for the midwives who could have been doing better things with their time.
To London For WTM
Having got the all clear I trotted off to London to attend WTM and briefly caught up with a lot of travel blogger and PR friends. I stayed the night at the chic but affordable The East London Hotel to make the journey to Excel easier but alas there was a tube strike on the Central Line which meant I had to do a last minute dash in an Uber. Sigh.
I didn’t last too long at the conference but had some interesting discussions about projects for next year and caught a few talks in between saying hi to familiar faces.
Morning Sickness Again?
The sickness described above has continued to come and go. My midwife thinks that unfortunately I’m one of the unlucky few who get morning sickness back in the third trimester. I don’t often vomit but my body does delicious things like burp up chunks of food while I’m trying to brush my teeth. (Gross, I know!) I’m pretty much nauseous around the clock and live on Gaviscon but am trying to eat through it. I can’t wait to enjoy food again in 2019!
Geeking out at NCT
We started our NCT antenatal classes this week and I took to them like a typical geek. After initially feeling nervous about discussing the more gnarly side of birth and child rearing (I’d been trying not to think about what happens at the end of this process) I found it reassuring in the end to learn more about the biology of childbirth.
Rather than recommending things you should and shouldn’t do for your body/your baby, the course focused on giving you all the background knowledge and covering different options so you can make your own informed decisions. The 4 evening classes and 1 all day sesh passed by in a flash and the banter definitely upped as us 6 couples got to know each other better.
Lots of people do NCT for the friendships alone and already I’m looking forward to meeting up with my NCT girlfriends for coffee once we’re all on maternity leave. Slightly nerve-wracking is the fact that 2 out of 6 couples have had their babies early, proving that these bubbas don’t keep to a schedule.
Pregnancy Massage Of Dreams
I also went for a magnificent pregnancy massage this week at Coworth Park Spa in Ascot. In lieu of a baby shower (it’s not for me) I spent a weekend with two of my best girlfriends eating great food, getting pampered and talking all things motherhood.
The pregnancy massage was spendy but genuinely made me feel the best I have in ages. It’s the perfect antidote to 3rd trimester aches, pains, anxiety and twinges. If only I could have one every week.
The Shipping Arrives
Our shipping is finally here! After 3 months I could barely remember what we’d put in the large move cube that sailed from Oz to Britain via the Panama Canal (our bits and bobs have been on quite the cruise) so it was wonderful to be reunited with things I’d forgotten were coming – like jumpers and framed prints.
At first the items look super-sized in our little Victorian terrace – rugs that floated in our Melbourne house touch the walls here – but eventually we found a home for most things. (And shoved what didn’t in the loft so I didn’t have to look at it!)
It’s really interesting to look around this house now and see a merging of furniture and artwork we bought in Sydney, Melbourne and the UK. Photos of our 2 weddings and items we’ve loved on our travels are mixed in with new buys from John Lewis and Next and the house now feels very much us.
Preparing The Nursery
1 of the most exciting items to come in the shipping (aside from the coffee machine) was the chest of drawers we’re going to use as a changing table in the baby’s room. I’d been washing and folding all the baby’s vests and sleepsuits over the last few weeks and felt a (pregnant) sense of achievement to have drawers to put them in.
I also started preparing my hospital bag at this point as the NCT girls’ experiences proved it doesn’t hurt to be ready early. I’ve packed a holdall for the baby and my Travel Hack Cabin Case for me.
Some last-minute bits like a change of clothes and snacks will need to be thrown in on the day but I think I’ve got all the important bits in there. I followed a check list from our NCT class but this post from Department of Wandering has some great tips.
Baby is Breech – Eeek
I saw a consultant this week who wanted to look over my notes and scans from Australia. It was a quick catch up with the usual tests and checks which come back fine but we did discover something a bit worrying – the baby is in the breech position.
There’s still time for it to change but I’ve been referred for a scan at 36 weeks to see exactly how bubs is lying. The consultant says no more apart from don’t worry about it yet, which of course we do. Depending on how the scan goes in a few weeks I might be spending the rest of this pregnancy on all fours trying to get my baby to spin!
Xmas On Speed
I’m excited/terrified/intrigued about what the next few weeks will bring. Luckily Christmas is a fun distraction.
(I’ve been trying to rein my decorating enthusiasm in as nesting + 1st xmas in the UK for 4 years = Elf on speed!)
I’m aiming to work up until the baby arrives or I’ve had enough, whichever comes first, so hopefully you’ll see a few more updates from me before the end of the year.
I might even share how I plan to tackle maternity leave if that’s something you want to read? Let me know in the comments and I’ll crack on with it!
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