36 Week Pregnancy Update: The Struggle is Real

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I've had a few friends have babies recently and they all told me the same thing - pregnancy isn't that bad until you hit 36 weeks. Despite the constant aches, pains, hunger, and insomnia I still think I'm having a relatively 'easy' pregnancy. Whenever I tried to imagine what being pregnant would feel like before I could never understand why it sucked so much. I figured you'd gain a bit of weight, your feet would start swelling, and you'd pee a lot.

That's definitely a good basic description, but it's hard to really understand what that feels like 24/7. During the second trimester when baby was up higher and preventing me from breathing as well I'd get panic attacks thinking I'd give anything to be able to just take off this giant belly and set it down for a few hours to feel like myself again. I think that's what's making things feel more difficult as the weeks progress. There's no reprieve. IMG_9521

On a daily basis I usually experience all of the following; insomnia/fatigue (getting about 5 hours of crappy sleep a night), heartburn, swollen feet that hardly fit in my running shoes anymore, low back pain, braxton hicks, constant hunger that literally hurts if I don't eat quickly enough, and pain/numbness in my hands and right arm thanks to pregnancy induced carpal tunnel.

If I sound like I'm being a negative nancy I don't want to come across that way. I was just always genuinely curious as to what pregnancy would feel like, and when I'd ask friends who had kids they'd say "Oh - there's no way to describe it. You just have to experience it." No, I'm pretty sure I just described how I feel accurately. Obviously pregnancy differs from person to person but that's been my physical state for the last 1-2 weeks.

We are 100% done with preparing for baby. One of the last things we had to do was set up this amazing Pack N Play that Travis's mom got us. IMG_9530

Since we don't have a separate room for baby he will be bunking with us, and this compact 'all in one' station is perfect for our needs. It will be right near our bed so I won't have to go far for nighttime feedings, we can change him on the changing table, and all of his 0-3 month clothes are stored underneath.

I still can't believe something that will fit inside of this, is fitting inside of me right now! Clearly my stomach looks big enough to be holding a 6 pound baby, but unless I'm looking at photos of myself I don't feel like I look that big. When I look down it doesn't seem nearly as massive. Now, when I try to get up off the couch or roll out of bed it definitely feels huge!

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By far the hardest thing I've had to deal with recently has been carpal tunnel in my hands and sometimes my entire right arm. It started about two weeks ago when I'd wake up and my fingers felt stiff and numb. I talked to my OB about it and she said there wasn't much I could do aside from investing in some wrist splints to wear at night. Apparently I'm starting to just get swollen everywhere and it's compressing the veins that lead to my hands. It's also preventing me from wearing my wedding rings anymore. Boo.

On a bad night I'll wake up every 1.5-2 hours crying because my entire right arm has gone numb. You know that feeling you get in your leg as it's waking up after falling asleep? You feel like it's on fire and there's a thousand needles poking it? Yeah, that's how my arm feels at night, and how my fingers feel all day (on bad days.) My mom suffers from carpal tunnel so she brought up her wrist splints last week when they were in town for Travis's graduation. Wearing these, sleeping only on my left side (since my right arm is worse) and massaging my wrists and forearms seems to have helped.ย  IMG_9532With one month until the due date I'm feeling - everything. Part of me can't wait for him to be here already, and part of me wishes I had another 9 months. I keep thinking "this is the last time I'll ever be without a kid for the rest of my life." I suddenly wish I would have relaxed more, traveled more, worked more, ... lived more.

Then I imagineย seeing him for the first time, bringing him home, looking into his eyes as I feed him, or celebrating our first Christmas with him. I just want to burst into tears I can't imagine being any happier in my life.

Don't worry, I also imagine weeks without sleep, crying for hours on end (both of us), and not being able to remember when I showered last.

A few final random updates: total weight gain is 33 pounds, and I'm still feeling pretty good working out about 5x a week (it takes EVERYTHING I have to get the energy to workout but when I do I always feel 10x better.) I still eat 3x more carbs than vegetables but damn are they delicious.

Moms - did you have a sudden 'panic' toward the end of your pregnancy that you weren't ready to be a Mom?