30 Weeks Pregnant: Energy Bursts And Tight Dresses

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned just how tired I’ve been my entire pregnancy in any of my posts.  I know I’ve touched on it, but I think the reality was a lot worse.  Getting out of bed in the morning was almost impossible, I assumed because I wasn’t sleeping well and once I was out everything would go in slow motion, I had no go button and there didn’t seem to be a lot I could do about it.

Everyday the first hour at work  (which is one of the busiest hours of the day) was spent yawning and trying to stay awake at the same time as getting everything set up for the day that I wasn’t able to set up the day before.  Some days I was at the point where I was having to get up and stretch or walk around the room a bit, just to keep myself alert enough to keep going.  I usually regained a bit of energy by mid morning, enough to cope with the day, although it often waned by mid afternoon and the home stretch would be pretty rough.  After work it was rare for me to come home without needing a nap and even with that, I’d still be exhausted and ready for bed by around 8.30pm.

Weekends were no better.  I’d have all intentions of getting up at a reasonable hour, maybe doing some housework, homework or baby preparation chores, but often breakfast and my shower were enough to tire me out enough for a lie down.  Some days I was napping twice and still having an early night.  I started feeling like a bit of a failure, there were so many things I wanted to do and needed to get done and there just wasn’t a chance to get them done due to my energy levels.  Zombie helped out of course, but the more weeks that went by, the more behind I got and the more it brought me down, especially when I had so many people telling me that this was the nice stage of pregnancy, the time where you have energy and the harder parts of the first trimester, like morning sickness were gone.  My energy levels were dropping daily.

Two weeks ago I had my gestational diabetes test and my midwife had ordered extra tests to check my iron levels.  The diabetes test came back all clear, which was great news, but it turned out that my iron stores were at ten, at the start of my pregnancy they were at eighty.  No wonder I was so tired!  Iron tablets were prescribed and on my third day of taking them I felt better than I had in months and luckily for me I haven’t had any of the nasty side effects that can come with taking iron tablets.  Although I must admit my number twos are now a strange colour and particularly odorous!

The difference is amazing.  I’m still not sleeping well, but getting out of bed is no longer impossible.  I’m not yawning my way through the day, I can sit at my desk for longer without needing to jolt myself awake, I’m making less mistakes, remembering more and I’ve only had one nap this week!  Things are getting done and I couldn’t be happier.

My bump is getting bigger every day, the full extent of which I realised on Friday when Zombie and I decided to have a long overdue date night of dinner and a movie.  I was looking forward to going out, something we don’t often do anymore, but I was especially looking forward to getting dressed up.  How wrong I was, even my old faithful ‘fat’ dress was too small.  It’s a lovely purple dress (my favourite colour) that tapers out, so I figured it would be perfect for the bump.  In a way it was, it sat snugly around bump, but I forgot that I’ve also gotten bigger elsewhere, namely my chest and it was a choice between not being able to breathe all night and risking splitting the dress, or sticking to my comfy clothes that have been my go to for a while now.  I chose to be comfortable and we ended up having a great night which is way more important than wearing a nice dress.

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Baby is hopefully only ten weeks away now and I’m getting really excited to meet him or her.  There is still plenty that I need to do before baby arrives, but I’m no longer feeling like it’s an impossible task.  This week alone I finally got myself organised to get a more family appropriate car.  My two door gas guzzler just wasn’t going to work with a car seat and living on a budget so it was time for something with four doors, something cheap to run and something a bit more reliable.  Now I’m trying to sell the old car, which is stressful in itself, but I’m sure it will go eventually.  In the meantime I’m going to enjoy my new found energy, babys’ constant kicks and the compliments I’m getting from strangers about the fact that I’m pregnant.

Smiles and Sunshine
Katie

Trigger Warnings, Are They Necessary?

This has been a bit of a hot topic this week after Stephen Fry made a comment that child victims of sexual abuse should “grow up” and go easy on the self-pity. He also said he believed that people are becoming too sensitive, highlighted by the trend of “trigger warnings.”

I’d like to start by saying that I am NOT a victim of child abuse in any form and I cannot even begin to comprehend what that must be like to go through. Every individual deals with these traumas differently, some have better support than others which is evident in how they recover. Don’t get me wrong, I like Stephen Fry. He is often blunt and says relevant things, such as his statement on being offended, but I cannot condone what he has said on this occasion.

Trigger warnings are small disclaimers at the start of an article or text, like the warnings before a movie or TV show, letting people know that there is violence etc. They are designed to give people advanced warning that the article might upset them or be a setback in recovery. I’ve used them before in some of my more serious blog posts where I’ve described a panic attack in detail.

As someone who has dealt with mental health issues for a while now, I know how easy it is to be caught off guard by an image or an article and be transported back to a bad patch of life unexpectedly, something that can often be difficult to deal with. Trigger warnings give me the choice of whether or not to read these articles. If I’m not in a good head space at the time, you can be sure I’ll be avoiding them.

Of course there is the argument that we need to face our demons to overcome them and I absolutely agree with that, but there is a time and a place. That’s what therapy, counselling and group sessions are for. You go into these knowing full well that old wounds are going to be opened, and you have time to mentally prepare for it beforehand. I’m not saying that makes it easier, but no one ever went to therapy because they thought it would be easy. At least they shouldn’t anyway.

It’s probably difficult for people who haven’t been through these traumas to understand just how affective an article or image can be. There is still a strong “get over it” vibe amongst many people who have no experiences of their own. Just Google the term trigger warnings and you will come up with lots of opinion articles about how trigger warnings are stupid and people just need to get over it. Unfortunately it’s just one of those things and some of these people will never understand.

Are we using too many trigger warnings? Possibly. They do seem to be popping up more and more, I’ve often read articles with a trigger warning where I’ve wondered what the point was by the time I got through, but then again, what I might find to be a low trigger risk might send another person over the edge so who’s to say.

There does also seem to be a growing trend of banning words such as “violate” in college campuses in America and I wonder if this is taking it too far, doing more harm than good. There are famous comedians who have begun refusing to perform at colleges due to some students inability to take a joke. Comedians tend to make light of a lot controversial topics, such as racism and homophobia, but it is generally done in an attempt to open our eyes to the ridiculousness of issues like these.

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Are we becoming too sensitive towards these issues? Yes and no. With the above paragraph, I feel that over time the negative effects of taking it too far will show and some of these over the top protective trends will relax. As with everything, there is a line, but it’s a matter of opinion as to how blurry it should be. I do think that as a society we are slowly becoming more aware of the effects abuse and mental illness has on people. The more information and shared experiences out there, trigger warnings and all, the better as far as I’m concerned.

Smiles and Sunshine
Katie

Third Trimester Time

I’m officially in the home stretch now, 28 weeks pregnant, getting bigger, more excited and a little more stressed every day.

The closer I get to my due date, the more I realize just how much I have left to do before baby makes his or her arrival. I’m waking up at all hours, worrying about all sorts of things that I’ve forgotten to put on the list of things we need and of course forgetting about them again by morning.

The other morning I worked myself into a frenzy over the temperature of the house during winter. All logic went out the window until Zombie reminded me that of course we are going to get another heater. Quite pleased to have him around to level my head out at these times!

Emotionally I’m back on a rollercoaster, happy, sad, angry, you name it, I’ll feel it in a day. My temperament is short and I often get angry at myself when the baby brain kicks into action. Making lists is helping with that though, as long as I remember to check it…

Sleep is a little easier now, I’m still tossing and turning, but I’ve discovered that if I straighten my legs instead of bending them like I usually would, I don’t wake up sore anymore which is definitely preferable. There were some mornings I was hobbling around for the first two hours of the day because my hips were so tight from sleeping, but I’ve managed to sort that for the time being. It’s still hard to get comfortable, but I figure that’s just part of pregnancy.

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All in all, my excitement is the biggest change as I enter the final months of pregnancy. It’s becoming very real now. I can feel baby moving around all the time and I really love sitting around watching my belly jump about. Baby still has a habit of keeping still as soon as Zombie comes over for a look or feel but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before he will get to feel a kick himself.

Smiles and Sunshine
Katie

The Baby Brain Is In Full Swing

I’m not saying that I thought that Baby Brain was a myth, but I wasn’t prepared for just how forgetful I would become.  I’m twenty-seven weeks pregnant now and the brain fog seems to be getting cloudier everyday.  I’ve locked myself out of the house three times, forgotten to do things at work that I’ve been doing every single working day for nearly five years and I keep telling Zombie that it’s only a matter of time before I forget his name!

My keys, which have always lived in my handbag if they’re not in the ignition, keep showing up in the strangest places (although not the fridge yet).  Almost every time I leave the house I have to double back to get my lunch, water bottle, or sometimes even my phone (try as I might I just can’t handle not having it on me even though it spends most of the day sitting silently).  And for anyone who has sent me a text message or Facebook message, I’m sorry if I haven’t replied, it only takes about thirty seconds before I forget that I’ve received a message!

I’m forgetting to add vital ingredients when I cook dinner, forgetting to get the meat out of the freezer for dinner and any time I go to the supermarket I’m guaranteed to forget at least half the items, even when I take a list with me.  The list sits in front of me in the trolley, with glaringly obvious uncrossed out items and yet I still don’t give them a second thought until I get home.

I’m constantly walking into rooms forgetting why I’m there in the first place (I know we all do this, but every single time?), I’ve nearly forgotten to put the powder in the washing machine a few times and today I even caught myself putting my bra in the fridge instead of the washing machine.  Would have made for a nice surprise the next time Zombie went to get a drink!

At work I’ve had to start making lists of things not to forget, something that’s a little embarrassing considering that generally the things I’m forgetting are the little things that happen every day without fail.  It’s definitely going to be interesting when I start training the person who covers my maternity leave in a few weeks.   There have been plenty of times where I’ve had to trek back to the office because I forgot to take my lunch with me from my bag to the staffroom.  One time I even had to go back twice because I forgot why I’d gone back to the office in the first place!

My long term memory seems okay and unfortunately my anxiety memory isn’t suffering at all (I’m still agonizing daily over every single conversation I have that had even the slightest potential to be taken the wrong way, even the years old ones), it just seems to be the little yet important things that are a part of everyday life that just won’t stay inside my brain anymore.

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I’ve been told it’ll never come back, I’ve been told it’ll come back after the baby is a few months old and I’ve been told that it’ll come and go throughout the pregnancy.  All I know is, it’s frustrating as anything but it’s definitely made for hilarity at times.

Smiles and Sunshine
Katie