If you’ve read my second trimester update you’ll know that I spent the tail end of that period with dry and itchy skin. I honestly thought it was just heat rash, or because my skin was stretching beyond it’s capacity. More fool me! It was, in fact, the dreaded PUPPS or PEP rash. A rash brought about by pregnancy with no rhyme or reason and one that itches like crazy. You can read more about my ‘delightful’ pregnancy rash here and if you’re interested in the products and hacks I found to treat it, there’s a video here. Needless to say it has been pretty disruptive during the last few months of my pregnancy, to the point where it’s been quite difficult to enjoy being pregnant and, instead, carrying baby number two has become more of a means to an end. Le sigh!
Tiredness and the third trimester
Tiredness has also reigned supreme during this final trimester of pregnancy. Admittedly, it was worse when I was working. Being pregnant, working full-time condensed hours, having a three-year-old and itching like crazy was kind of a perfect storm for being absolutely shattered and we seriously couldn’t have coped as a family without Mr H doing more than his fair share over the past few months. Now I’m on maternity the tiredness is still there, but it’s eased, as I can take it easier if I choose.
Nesting, Nesting, Nesting
In terms of taking it easy, I’ve not been doing a lot of that if I’m honest. Having only moved house at the start of the year there were still things that needed to be sorted around our new home. Places where we had originally stored things, didn’t seem quite right, so there were some move arounds. Items were stored in the loft. Washing machines were scrubbed. Dishwashers deep cleaned. Basically nesting kicked in, as it always does. It’s knackering and, at times, somewhat unnecessary but knowing that I won’t get much opportunity to get housework sorted with a newborn and little boy in tow it makes me more content knowing that the place is spick and span to begin with.
There was also the baby clothes washing. My goodness that took forever! First time around we didn’t know whether we were having a boy or a girl so we only really purchased the first two sizes of clothing. This time around we know we’re team blue and we have a load of clothes, blankets and everything else as hand-me-downs from Elliott. I’ve only washed the bedding, towels and first three sizes of clothing and that seems to have taken weeks! Maybe it’s just because we have so much normal washing these days anyway, what with me changing my PJs virtually every day and Elliott coming back from nursery generally covered in whatever he has had for lunch.
Sorting the nursery
We have also been busy sorting the baby’s nursery out. I know it’s a glorified storage-come-dressing room for the first six months, but we really did need to do something to turn our third bedroom around from dumping ground to a space suitable for a little one. There’s still a few touches I want to add to it, but we’re virtually there, so keep your eyes peeled for a nursery tour soon!
Trips to the midwife
Midwife visits have been positive. My blood pressure and urine are always good. Baby’s heartbeat is strong and regular and he’s very active. I’m measuring consistently on the same centile, with the only bug-bears really being the PUPPS rash and the fact that baby is back-to-back. Whilst, babies can still be delivered this way, it does make the birth more difficult and, potentially, more painful. Ventouse, or Forceps intervention is often required. Something I was really hoping to avoid this time around. My midwife has told me to spend time on all fours, or sitting on a birthing ball. I’ll admit, I’m not doing it as often as I should. I can’t go on all fours when Elliott is around as he thinks I’m a climbing frame. Ditto, if I try to sit on the birthing ball he thinks it’s a giant football. That means, the only opportunity I get to try to wiggle baby into position is when Elliott has gone to bed and, to be honest, by that time I’m more interested in slobbing out in front of TV and eating a Magnum than bouncing on a birthing ball! Update: There have been some developments since I wrote this blog post, look out for an update coming soon!
More health issues
Another niggle which has cropped up only in the past couple of weeks is an ear infection/blocked ear. I’m currently half-deaf and in a lot of pain. I’m taking anti-biotics which are helping massively with the pain, but not so much with the lack of hearing. I have an appointment in a couple of weeks to get my ear syringed and, in the meantime, I am slathering olive oil in there as if I’m dressing an Italian salad. Question is… what will come first baby or being able to hear. I’m kind of hoping being able to hear as the thought of the pressure (and pain) in my ears when trying to push a baby out isn’t massively appealing.
When will baby make an appearance?
I keep wondering whether baby is going to arrive early, late, or right on time (has anyone actually ever had a baby on their actual due date?). The hospital bags are ready and packed in anticipation and I regularly get bouts of cramps, which I am convinced are the start of labour, however, they disappear just as soon as they arrive. In the meantime I’m trying to live day-to-day and do all the usual things, as far as I can anyway… I certainly won’t be volunteering to take Elliott to soft play at the moment and I can tell he is getting frustrated with my lack of mobility, poor thing.
How has my second pregnancy been?
In some respects, this pregnancy has flown and, as I was writing my birth plan (blog post on that soon), I couldn’t quite believe I was at that stage of pregnancy already. In other respects, especially with all the niggles I’ve encountered this time around, it’s really dragged. First time around, I was in a massive rush to meet baby. I was bored on maternity leave, excited to meet them and, to be fair, melting in the heat that was the summer of 2015. Although, I think at this stage of pregnancy I hadn’t actually even broken up for maternity leave. The fact that I broke up early this time around should tell you something about the challenges that this pregnancy has put me through.
This time around I’m quite content for baby to stay there for a little while. Sure, it will be exciting to meet him – and thank him personally for all of the 11pm kicking action – but there’s also appointments at Elliott’s new school to deal with, ears to be syringed and enough to be getting on with that I would relish the opportunity to be bored in the run up to baby number twos arrival. Also, the weather is pants, literally back-to-back rain, so I don’t have the over-heating issues that I had with baby number one. As I write this there are just fifteen days left until my official due date…
Read my other pregnancy updates here: