We are about 7 weeks away from meeting our little girl and it's starting to feel very real! I'm feeling the pressure to get my to-do list DONE, but I also want to be very intentional with my time and remember this special time as we prepare for baby. During my whole pregnancy, I've tried to maintain healthy habits and stay in a good place mentally, and now that I'm in the third trimester, I feel like it's even more important! You can read my first trimester recap and second trimester recap.
Today I'm sharing the specific things I'm doing to prepare myself during the last few weeks of pregnancy!
1. "Spinning Babies" Stretches
My doula gave me these stretches to do to make more room for baby! These are specific stretches to do in the third trimester to help make room for baby to position herself correctly for birth. A couple of them need a partner, so my husband has been doing them with me each day. They take about 5 minutes!
2. Prepping our Space
I enjoy organizing and purging anyway, but with a baby on the way, I'm wondering where we are going to put all of these new items in our very limited closet space! After adding our new door to the garage, I immediately added new shelving in the garage and was able to move 8 bins from interior closets into the garage! Woo! I keep telling myself that every little bit helps! Now I just need to finish the nursery ;)
3. Moving my Body Daily
I love to work out and go for walks, but during the third trimester it looks a little different than normal! I can't get quite as low in some of my exercises! Ha! I try to listen to my body and I don't do anything that doesn't feel good to me. Some days I do a workout video and go for a walk, some days it's only a 10 minute stroll and a few stretches at night. I'm not worried about it, but try to move each day in a way that feels good. (and I love a good nap, so I'm always listening if my body tells me to catch a few extra z's!)
I do the Stay Fit Virtual (@stayfitvirtual) workouts by @StayfitBritt and love them. There are pregnancy specific workouts, express workouts, and normal 45 minute workouts that I mix in to work with what my body needs that day. Word to the wise: they do a free week, so try it out!
4. Getting my Nutrition
I'm coming off of my baby shower weekend, and we had the best time! Cake is one of my favorite things to have at a party, so of course I indulged in a delicious piece of strawberry cake yesterday, and I'm not worried about it at all! I don't try to restrict my eating, but I *do* try to make sure that I'm getting the nutrients I need to grow a healthy baby. I love sweets, so I pay attention to my sugar intake (there is sugar in everythinggg!), since that can negatively affect pregnancy, but other than that, I stick to an intuitive eating plan and try to eat colorfully!
One way that I get in my greens and my protein is with my favorite green smoothie - I love NOW Foods' clean organic pea protein powder (I get the vanilla!).
I feel like I take sooo many pills each day, but it's really not that many ;) Here's what I take...(as always, consult your personal physician for recommendations!)
- probiotic: Seed Synbiotic
- pre-natural: Ritual (citrus)
- hair: Nutrafol
- women's multi: NOW Foods
- iron supplement: hint: absorbs best with calcium
- vitamin D: NOW Foods liquid drops
Of course physical and mental are so closely related, but I'm committed to making good choices daily for my mental health, too! Part of my morning routine is to take some time for myself each day and practice a few of these things below.
I have my goals printed out in a goals binder and have images and affirmations to go along with them. Each morning, I review them and say my affirmations aloud. This is a game changer to give myself tools to use if I start to have any negative thoughts or worries...I can immediately say an affirmation out loud to get back into a positive space.
2. Daily Reading
I'm usually reading a personal growth book and right now it's The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson. I'm loving it so far and would recommend it to anyone. It's not pregnancy related, but definitely useful as I think about what my days will look like in future and how I want to spend my time.
I'm also reading a weekly progression pregnancy book called Mama Natural and it has been a great resource. Highly recommend if you are interested in a more natural birth.
3. Investing in a Doula
This was a huge one for me for peace of mind! I wanted to make sure that I knew the things I needed to know and was making the best choices for my baby, according to my personal convictions and preferences. I hired a doula and after our first meeting, both my husband and I were blown away by how much we learned and how happy we were to have a doula for this experience! Doulas aren't medical personnel; rather, they provide emotional support for the mother (& father!) and act as your advocate during the birth process.
4. Taking a Birth Class
Again, I want to be as prepared as possible....without spending every waking moment researching, reading, and studying blindly. My husband and I are enrolled in a Christian-based birth class and love it! We're only in week two of five, but so far have been very impressed with the course content and the instructor's preparedness and experience! It's called Birth Restored by Akasha Hines.
Spiritual & Emotional:
This one is a little different because it's less about what I've been doing and more about how I'm trying to react to the things that I'm doing or experiencing. Let's be real: emotions are a little all over the place during pregnancy. For me, especially during the third trimester.
As part of my morning quiet time, I journal and pray, and read the Bible. As part of my journaling time, I might reflect on the previous day, think about what's ahead that day, or think about a specific prayer I have for baby girl.
Most of all, I try to give myself and my emotions a lot of *grace.* Sometimes I know things are not a big deal, but I'm still crying about them... I try to shake it off and not beat myself up over "acting silly" or "making a big deal about things" because even though I know in my head that something is silly, my hormones and emotions have other plans. ;)
So this is your reminder to give yourself grace and try to laugh about the silly things you cried about the day before.
I hope this list was helpful for you as you prepare for your baby's arrival! I can only share from my personal experience, but these are things that are helping/have helped me so far!