Before I get too far away from pregnancy, I wanted to summarize how the third trimester went (truthfully!).
The third trimester is such a mind game! You know the baby is coming but you don’t know exactly when and it feels like you’re inching towards the due date while getting increasingly less comfortable. Below are highlights from our third trimester. I’m sharing the heavy first just in case you don’t make it to the end because I think it’s important that you know!
Hiccups along the way
Each trimester of this pregnancy has held huge challenges: we lost Ian’s father during the first, we had the hospital-food-poisoning incident during the second, and just as I started feeling my baby hiccup, I had a hiccup of my own. At a routine visit with the midwife, I was given a postpartum depression questionnaire to take as a baseline measurement for comparison after the baby was born. If this questionnaire had been a test, I would have made a…D? I had been crying upwards of 5x a day over seemingly nothing and I knew that I wasn’t feeling myself, but it took the midwife confirming that for me to fully believe it. I thought it was just hormones, but as it turns out, it’s likely that 25% of women actually have ‘prepartum’ depression that goes undiagnosed because most medical care providers don’t think to check until after the baby is born. Long story short, I started taking the very smallest dose of Zoloft and almost instantly started feeling better. To be clear, I did discuss and consider the potential negative effects on the baby, but Zoloft is considered very low risk, and as my midwife explained, the potential negative effects on me if I chose not to be treated could also lead to negative effects on the baby if, later, postpartum depression decreased my ability to best care for the baby. I’m happy to discuss my individual symptoms or situation further with you if that would be helpful (firstname.lastname@example.org), but the bottom line is if you’re going through pregnancy and you know that you don’t feel like yourself, please talk to your care provider! I know this isn’t the most pleasant topic and a slight departure from what normally ends up on our journal, but not everything about pregnancy and raising a child is roses and I always want to be truthful about my experience in case it could be helpful to others.
Finishing up the nursery
During this trimester, we got to finish up the nursery! It’s definitely the happiest room in the house. But don’t take our word for it…just check out some of these photos!
Photographing with baby
Photographing sessions and events with baby was no cake walk. We had our last wedding at 33 weeks and several other sessions during this trimester. Between feeling unbalanced with a giant belly and needing to use the bathroom all the time, photographing things was fairly uncomfortable. Two things that made it easier: having Ian along for the ride and super comfy clothes. I lost count of how many times I threw on this simple Pink Blush dress for sessions! It was so comfortable and easy to wear, especially for the rainy wedding we photographed at the Oaks at Salem!
Beach and pool trips
One of the awesome side effects of being treated for depression was that I was able to let go of so many unimportant things that had been crowding my life and that I had held onto so tightly. This was so important. I knew that I would need so much more space and time when the baby arrived. Instead of taking on more ‘things,’ I instead concentrated on relaxing, slowing down, and allowing myself to just feel joyful. Ian and I tried to spend as much time as possible together, and one way that we were able to accomplish all of that relaxation and happiness was weekend trips to the beach and pool! Not only did this make me so happy, but it was also great for making my growing body feel more comfortable! Pregnancy + water = bliss. On one of our trips, our friend Jessica of JJ Horton Photography was sweet enough to photograph us in our happy place. We will cherish these photos forever because they represent such a special time in this pregnancy, one that we so badly needed and one that truly prepared me for the arrival of our baby.
We’ll end with one of my favorite things that we did during the pregnancy — weekly bump photos! We used the letterboard to track the size of fruit/veggie that the baby was that week and what I was craving at the time!