The Third Trimester -Full Term and Face Up?! (Weeks 35-38)

So I wanted to do another third trimester update since I am officially 38 weeks pregnant today and I know anything can happen anytime! Overall, there are only a few changes to report in my symptoms but I want to record them anyway!

Third Trimester (Weeks 35-38)

Physical: I’ve started to feel more tired in the last few weeks as my pregnancy comes to an end. I realized around week 36 that I simply couldn’t go out and do as much as I was in prior weeks. I started needing to take a nap during the day just like in the first trimester as well, but that could have been due to my lack of sleep during the night! Here are some of my other symptoms:

  • More and more Braxton Hicks: Braxton Hicks contractions have continued these last few weeks, particularly at night and when I need to use the bathroom. I also get them when I walk for a long time. Just before my 38th week began, I actually had one while walking that was slightly painful (like a period cramp) that I had to breathe through. I told my doctor about it at my last appointment and she said that was a good sign that things were getting ready in my uterus!
  • Hip Pain At Night: At week 36 I started waking up with pretty intense pain in my hips. I did a little googling and realized this is a common pregnancy symptom because your hips are loosening to prepare for birth and when you lay on your side they absorb a lot of the weight and pressure. This can lead to some pain throughout the night and while awake as well. I notice that I need to change sides when I am sleeping about every two hours because I am woken up by the pain (or having to pee!) I purchased a hip/belly band from my hospital that I’ve been wearing a few hours a day just to give myself more support. We will see if it helps! However, I have a feeling this is just another symptom to endure and it will improve after baby is born.
  • Face Up?!: This is maybe a symptom more about the baby than me but when I went in for my ultrasound at week 36 the doctor told me that my baby was head down but he was “face up” or “sunny side up” as it is also called. This refers to the baby’s position in my uterus. The most effective position for delivery is to have baby facing backwards towards your back/tailbone instead of out towards your stomach. It looks like baby prefers to be face up because he is still in that position at week 38! However, after talking to the doctor, it’s not something I should worry about until I am in labor since 85% of babies turn backwards once contractions begin. On the recommendation of my doula, I have been spending as much time as possible in all-fours position and sleeping on my left side. Hopefully baby turns when he’s ready to come out!
  • Group B Strep Test: My last update is that I tested positive for Group B Strep. This isn’t a big deal really except that I will have to have antibiotics administered through an IV once I get to the hospital every 4 hours. Also, if my water breaks I will need to go to the hospital as soon as possible so I can get antibiotics. Luckily, the IV will only last 30 minutes and then I will be unhooked and free to move around again. I was happy to hear that since movement is an integral part of my birth plan!

Fitness Update: I am still doing my prenatal pilates every week but as of week 37 I cut down on some of my Nike Training Club workouts in exchange for more walking. This is only due to the fact that baby is not yet in the optimum position so I want to avoid doing too many squats/lunges and having him settle down in a position that is a little bit unfavorable. Instead of Nike Training Club workouts, I have been doing more mobility exercises as well as practicing my pilates exercises at home with my exercise ball. I stretch every night before bed and it really does help me sleep! I also use a tennis ball and roll it between my shoulders and lower back (against a wall) and it gives me much needed relief before bed.

Emotional: I’ve been feeling pretty solid emotionally these last few weeks, but I have noticed that I feel a little bit of anxiety when I think about how at some point I will REALLY be going to the hospital to have this baby! I think it is just the fear of the unknown that makes me slightly unsettled. But my mission this entire pregnancy has been to eliminate my biggest obstacle to having a positive childbirth experience: my own fear! I’m continuing to tell myself that I am fully capable of doing this without pain relief and that I have a great support team to help me in my husband, doula, and doctor. It’s hard to wait (especially when I am hyper aware of every little change thinking, “Is this it?!”) but I know that baby will come at just the right time. We will see if he ends up a little Scorpio or a Saggitarius just like his mom and dad!

Here’s a bump shot from week 38! Honestly I thought I would look bigger, but I think I carry him more inside my body than out?


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