Ah, the last three months of pregnancy.
It’s the time during your pregnancy when your belly starts getting in the way of everything. Let’s not start on the swollen feet. Since you probably cant see over your belly anymore, the swollen feet aren’t too bad then. Still, somewhat uncomfortable.
With the discomfort rising and you slowing down with tiredness and probably some broken sleep, it’s easy to think that the third trimester takes forever to pass by and for you to meet your baby.
Just like the first two trimesters, it will pass before you know it! Along with all the discomforts!
I experienced the last trimester with the boys during the colder months and it went by a lot easier with a build-in incubator because I struggle with warmth during the winters. With Kid3, I carried during the summer months, and let me tell you, sitting on the couch in just my under garments late in the evenings once everyone went to bed became my go-to thing. Pregnancy and heat for me was just a totally different ball game, one I didn’t enjoy that much.
I’ve put together a list of to-do things to take care during your third trimester. While the list looks lengthy, you can move some of the items to the second trimester checklist if need be.
Pregnancy: Your third trimester checklist #pregnancy #thirdtrimesterTweet
Some hospitals offer maternity tours for parents to familiar themselves with the facilities and give some direction on where to go when you go into labour. You won’t be able to go into the wards, but you’ll be provided with valuable information on what will happen, what the Neo Natal unit is, under what circumstances it will be used and you’ll be able to ask any questions you could have.
Read up on labor signs
It’s easy to confuse Braxton Hicks with real labour signs, especially if this is your first pregnancy, and you should take some time to read up on the differences and any red flag signs you should lookout for as you approach your due date.
If you come across any red flags during your pregnancy, call your doctor immediately.
Some hospitals allow you to book your bed as early as 22 weeks of your pregnancy. Others wait until you’re in your last trimester. It’s important to book your bed so that the hospital already has all necessary information in a file for you and when your due day comes around, you’ll have one thing less to worry about.
Ah, one of the fun things of pregnancy! Hopefully you have booked your shoot by now and you can just enjoy the day, making memories.
There are many checklists available online to see what you should pack in your hospital bag, as well as your baby’s bag. There are only slight differences between packing for a vaginal birth and a cesarian.
When you book your hospital bed, the hospital will provide you with an information booklet, also known as a maternity passport, and it will also contain a packing list for you and your baby.
It’s best to pack the bags early on to avoid any surprises and then just add the last few items on the day you’re heading to the hospital.
Documents and birth plan
Pack all the necessary documents you’ll need early on into your bag. Your identity document, medical aid information and if you’ve set up a birth plan-make sure you pack that in too with extra copies.
It’s important to have emergency contacts, especially during the last trimester. Be sure to choose someone who is close to you in case you need to call them.
We didn’t have any emergency contacts with Kid1, but have them with Kid2 and Kid3. Just in case we had to go to the hospital earlier than expected, we knew that we would have someone to look after the older kid/s and readily available.
It’s also a good idea to have an emergency contact with your first pregnancy, in case your husband works a distance away, you have someone that can take you to the hospital in case there’s an emergency and there’s no time to waste.
Birth announcement and rules
After labour, you might not want visits the first while, and that’s perfectly okay! It took me three kids to realise I wanted privacy and only the closest people visiting directly after the birth.
Be sure to set up your rules early on and send them out to friends and family to let them know ahead of time what your plans are and how you and your husband will be handling things. There’s nothing wrong with setting up boundaries that you feel are best for your family.
Think about how you would like to announce the birth to others, something private or public? There are many ideas online of birth announcements to help you make a choice.
Stock up on essentials
If you’re use to do weekly groceries, I’m going to let you know that it’s not going to happen as easily anymore once your baby is born. You can save yourself some stress by stocking up on essentials for your home that you won’t worry about spoiling. Toiletries, medicine, cleaning products, non-perishable pantry items, etc. Oh yes and baby products you’ll be using on a daily basis, you’ll want to make sure you have plenty of those stocked up.
The last thing you’ll want to worry about is cooking dinner every night once you’re back from the hospital with a newborn. Spend some time making food in bulk and store it in the freezer for those times where the days and nights have stretched into one and you have no energy for anything. It’s easy to just take a portion and heat up than standing in front of the stove, cooking something up from scratch.
Sort out the baby room
Nest, nest, nest until you can’t nest anymore. Then nest some more. It’s going to happen.
I packed and repacked the baby room so many times in my last trimesters until I was happy with the results. They were also the most organised rooms in our home, always.
Spend time with older kid(s)
If this isn’t your first pregnancy, you’ll soon realise how splitting your attention between your older child and your newborn can be difficult. Spend as much time with your older child as you can, and include them in your pregnancy to help them understand what is happening and help them feel they are apart of it all too.
Install car seat
Don’t leave this for the day that you need to head home and you’re stuck trying to figure out how to install and properly use the car seat. Sort this out early on, and make sure you’re familiar with all the safety precautions.
Most hospitals don’t allow you to leave the hospital without the car seat at hand, so many sure it’s packed in and ready beforehand.
While there are many things you can’t do that you enjoyed pre-pregnancy, find ways and things you can do to pamper yourself. Get a new book, take a relaxing bubble bath, get your nails done or just take a lazy day doing absolutely nothing.
While it’s hard to get a good nights sleep with the discomfort, and busy days to get through, it’s easy to feel drained all the time. You are growing a baby, after all! Take the moments you have to nap, or just park in front of the TV, binge watching series with your feet in the air. You deserve it!
What to do during the third trimester of your pregnancy #pregnancy #thirdtrimesterTweet
Good luck on this beautiful journey ahead, relax and enjoy this time, and remember to use this checklist to help you navigate the third and last trimester of your pregnancy.
Remember to check back for more pregnancy posts coming!
You can find the first trimester to-do list here!
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