Holy moly, where has the time gone? I’m now at 37 weeks and FULL-TERM! Whoop! It is now less than three weeks to go until I meet this happy-feet-wee-thing that’s been growing inside my belly for the last eight and a bit months. It’s actually made itself quite comfortable and enjoys night-time prancing that’s for sure! We may have a wee diva on our hands?!
Over the last few weeks, I’ve definitely started to feel really, really pregnant. Rolling over in bed is a total effort and tying shoelaces standing up is no longer a viable option. Getting off the couch is now a two-stage process (stage 1- roll onto side and stage two - use an arm to prop oneself up and off the couch) while eating larger evening meals is now totally a terrible idea. There’s just not enough room!
I’ve noticed quite a lot of physical changes this trimester, for one the belly is no longer just large, it’s well and truly a baby belly that touches everyone else before I do (que the belly hug!). I’ve also noticed reduced breath, especially when I’m standing and talking – not great when you’re delivering nutrition workshops but a lovely by-product of growing a human that’s almost ready to meet the world. There’s also increased movement especially at night time after dinner. I’m sure this wee one loves food just as much as we do!
Below I’ve popped a few of my favourite essential items for this last trimester…hopefully the mums-to-be out there find them useful or can understand what I’m talking about!
1. MOISTRISER – every kind you can find
My mid-wife assures me it’s perfectly normal and a standard part of pregnancy but I swear I have never had such dry itchy skin in my whole entire life! I feel like someone has stuck a vacuum onto my skin and sucked every inch of hydration from its pores. The amount of moisturiser I have been using lately is downright ridiculous. I should actually just camp in the beauty aisle of the supermarket and invest in my own stash of natural moisturiser – Ecostore, Essano, Natural Instinct, Nature Baby…you name, I’ve been using it! Despite twice-a-day all over moisturising, my skin still feels dry. It’s like I just want to throw myself into a lake filled with oil or moisturiser and lay there forever so that my skin is constantly bathed in lusciousness. So to ward off these feelings of dryness and to help your skin as much as possible (if you also feel like me!), I’d recommend buying up large in the moisturiser department when good-quality natural products are on sale. Trust me when I say you’re going to need it! I’d also recommend investing in multiple kinds while you’re at it. For example, body moisturiser for the bathroom for after the shower or bath, hand cream for your handbag or desk and even potentially some hand cream or moisturiser for your bedside table for when you wake up in the night with dry, itchy skin. Yep, I have taken on moisturising as a full-time job!
2. Long-Line Singlets
Gone are the days when you can comfortably fit your pre-baby singlets. Mine now resemble something Britney Spears wore on her World Tour and my pyjamas have now turned into something of a crop top. Not ideal when you’re trying to keep that ever-expanding belly warm and toasty over Winter. I invested in four long-line singlets from Glassons (two black and two white) and I swear I wear them every single day. They are great over maternity jeans, yoga pants or worn under dresses but over maternity tights (I love these ones from Breastmates with dresses and skirts!). They also tuck beautifully into comfy elasticated waist-band pants and actually cover your belly. Like the whole belly so you don’t even have a sneaky belly button poking out. Yuuuusss!
3. Raspberry Leaf/Pregnancy Tea
Raspberry Leaf Tea is a well-respected herbal uterine tonic that has been used for thousands of years to help prepare a women’s body ready for birth.
As the name implies, its benefits come from the raspberry leaf rather than the berry and is thought too:
Support a faster, less painful birth by supporting the uterus to work more efficiently by making contractions more efficient while also encouraging it to let go and function without tension
Reduce the incidence of artificial rupture of membranes as well as the use of forceps delivery or caesarean
Help to prevent excessive bleeding after birth
Assists in the production of plentiful breast milk
At other times during pre-conception/conception it can also help too:
Increase fertility in both men and women during the pre-conception phase
Help to prevent miscarriage by strengthening and toning the holding capacity of the uterus
I only started taking Raspberry Leaf Tea in my third trimester (34.5 weeks to be exact!) and the recommendation is for 2-3 cups per day. However if you are looking at starting earlier in your pregnancy, simply check the recommended dose and make sure the Raspberry Leaf Tea you are purchasing is suitable to do so.
I would recommend sourcing a really good-quality organic Raspberry Leaf tea if you can. I’m really enjoying the Artemis Raspberry Leaf/Pregnancy Tea pictured above that I picked up from a local health food store. At $21.90, it was quite a bit more expensive than what you would get from the supermarket but if those benefits outlined above come true, I’ll be dam glad I paid for this tea! I’ve had many friends swear by it too and they are still producing growing healthy broods so it must be doing something right!
Righty-o, I’m off to waddle about the kitchen and prepare tea before doing some pregnancy yoga with the bump. I hope these wee tips help some mums and mum-to-be out there!