Your due date sounded so far away—and then, suddenly, it’s almost here.
I’ve been through it.
I’d probably do quite a few things differently if I had it to do again. Nothing major, just some small changes that may have made that last bit of time a bit easier on me as a new (and nervous) mama.
“Take it easy. Introduce peace into your mind and body in prepration. Don’t sweat the small stuff.”
That’s what I learned the first time around, and what I took with me for my next pregnancy.
The sooner you realize these things, the easier it is on you. You are stronger and more prepared than you think.
Hang in there because the third trimester is the home stretch, and these are just a few simple changes for making the last phase of pregnancy as peaceful as possible!
1. Keep your diet simple.
I dutifully read What To Expect When You’re Expecting and paid special attention to the foods I should add to my diet for the baby. Berries! Cheese! Leafy greens!
Ever the perfectionist, I ate all of them way too often, sometimes at every meal. And that was on top of indulging in my weird cravings (mostly stuffing from Boston Market), and my diet became a mixture of SUPER rigid and completely random. By the time the third trimester rolled around, a fixation on diet did more harm than it did good.
It just made it a lot harder to manage once the baby arrived. Just eat right. Make smart choices, listen to your doctor and try not to be too rash.
2. Get as much sleep as you can.
Sleep is SO important as a Mama in her third trimester. Rest is good for the baby, and good for you.
I know it may be difficult. You’re uncomfortable and anxious. You want to start nesting and getting everything ready. That’s natural. But remember to take it easy. Besides, before long you’ll be craving sleep like nothing else, do get as much of if as you can now!
And if you haven’t already, invest in a body/pregnancy pillow for the third trimester. Trust me.
3. Try not to focus TOO much on perfecting the nursery decor or planning every little detail.
As your delivery day gets closer, you’ll probably feel like “feathering your nest” for the newborn. You probably got a ton of baby gifts from the shower, and it feels very important to angle the mobile just right—except it’s not. It’s probably the least important thing you need to do.
If you’re like me, you won’t even put your baby in that crib for weeks.
I placed mine in a Moses basket on the floor—under a ceiling light so that I could make sure she kept breathing all night. There were no serene feedings in the new glider. I was camped out with my Boppy on the couch with so many burp cloths strewn about that they looked like upholstery.
Motherhood can be messy, and that’s ok.
It’s not meant to look like a Pinterest board and it likely won’t. So try not to get too bogged down in making the nursery look perfect. Focus on function. A good diaper station. Plenty of supplies. And a comfy place to grow and learn together.
4. Remember to slow down, relax and connect with your partner.
Because I didn’t want to jeopardize my job, I worked right up until the day I was scheduled to be induced.
It felt like there was still so much to prepare. I was on the go-go-go, and it was stressful for me, for my husband—and I’m sure my baby felt it too. I wish I would have given myself grace.
Give yourself some credit.
By the third trimester, you’ve probably gotten a lot done.
You’ve read the books, listened to the podcasts and followed the social media accounts. You’ve painted the nursery, held the baby shower and debated names. You’ve packed your hospital bag with cute slippers and put together a playlist for the delivery room. You’ve decided on everything from a birthing plan to whether you want to store the cord blood. You’ve done it all.
The only thing you haven’t done is relax.
You’ve earned it.
Sit still (and with your feet up). Be in the moment, and let it all sink in.
Reconnect with your partner. Stock up on sleep.
Everything is about to change, and you deserve some quiet time alone before you devote yourself to this new adventure.
And remember, you’ve got this.