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Susan's Pregnancy Journal

Week 29 ~ January 25, 2004
~ The Third Trimester

Now that I'm officially in the third trimester, the time I have left seems much too short. I have nothing ready for the baby and no energy to correct that problem. When we moved from the East coast to the Midwest, we left a lot of things in storage in our parents' attic, knowing we would be home at Christmas to retrieve them. Unfortunately, we didn't actually go home for Christmas and now we have almost none of our baby things. Thank goodness we at least brought the infant carseat and sling. We also brought a box of Susanna's first clothes, but most of them are too girly to use for Sam.

All we have right now are infant diapers and covers, and a bunch of clothes borrowed from a friend. We left behind most of Susy's baby toys, her receiving blankets, the washcloths we used as wipes, her hooded bath towels and the quilts she used to nap on. We didn't bring the breast pump, swing, the high chair or the bassinet. Not that we ever used the bassinet except as a changing table, but it could come in handy to keep Sam safe from his hyperactive sister!

So now I need to do some shopping and borrow from everyone I know. I don't want too many things, but I do want a bouncy chair to put Sam in while I'm in the shower or otherwise occupied. He needs blankets and towels, and a changing pad. We also don't have a diaper pail, or anywhere to put one, for that matter. I have no nursing bras or pads or shirts, since I stopped using them after the first few months with my daughter. They were all very useful in the beginning, however, and I'd like to have some again. And oh, boy, is this apartment not baby-proofed. At least we have a while before that matters. Although if he takes after his sister, this little guy will be moving around on his own before we know it.

The third trimester has hit me rather hard the past few weeks. I've been very easily fatigued, have almost no energy and my emotions have been running high. I'm trying to rest as much as I can, but the nesting urge has also struck and the state of our apartment is causing me deep distress. I desperately want to do a massive spring cleaning, but I have to lie down to rest after cleaning one bathroom. I'm trying to just do a little at a time for now, but a little at a time means that the place never actually gets clean. All I can do is try and keep the worst under control, then close my eyes or dim the lights to avoid noticing the rest.

The other problem I'm facing is the ongoing struggle to find something to wear. My belly is very big now, but the rest of me really isn't. This is great news, except that it means that I'm rapidly outgrowing my maternity clothes and I haven't been able to find any in stores that fit properly. If the shirts fit over my enormous belly, they are so big that the sleeves reach my fingers and the shoulders slide off. And forget about pants - all those trendy, snug-fitting low-rider jeans are out of the question for me now, and even the more traditional pants don't have enough fabric in the front panel to fit. Fortunately, I'm a stay-at-home mom and it really doesn't matter what I wear most of the time, or how often I wear the same outfit in any given week. If I can scrape by for another two months, I'll be fine. Well, as fine as you can be during the first month or two postpartum when absolutely nothing from your old wardrobe fits and you don't want to keep wearing maternity clothes!

We've made some progress this week with preparing Susanna for the birth. Recently she had begun getting very distressed and bursting into tears whenever we brought it up. She wouldn't tell us much beyond "it's scary," so we had trouble figuring out what in particular was bothering her and how to help her feel better about it. One problem is that she wants to stay home with her father while I go to the hospital, which is obviously not possible. Another problem seems to be fear of the new sibling being expressed as fear of the birth. She said this week that she doesn't want the baby to be born, she wants him to stay inside forever. She also told me she was worried the baby would be "mean" and do things like she and her friends do when they are being mean to each other. So we talked about how when people are babies, they don't understand anything and they just can't be mean. Big kids and grown-ups can act mean or nice, funny or angry, but babies can't really do anything other than eat, sleep and cry. Sometimes it may seem like they are being "mean," but they aren't trying to be. I think she understood. At any rate, she suddenly became very interested in attending the birth when I casually mentioned that we would need someone to take lots of photos and video of the new baby. Since the cameras are highly coveted objects, she immediately stopped crying, announced she would be attending the birth and proclaimed herself the Official Photographer. Ever since that conversation, she's been excited about the birth and eager for the baby to come. I just hope her enthusiasm lasts!

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