31 weeks pregnant. I still can’t believe it. I realized last week that I have yet to write a post about this trimester. So before I head to the hospital to give birth, I decided I better write something down 🙂
A Positive Test
My husband and I found out we were pregnant in May 2020. This pregnancy came as a complete surprise. We had feelings of shock, excitement, and panic. Were we ready to have another kid? How is this even possible? Yes, we took several tests just to be sure. And well, we know how it’s possible 😉 , but we just didn’t think it could happen!
To conceive our first son we went through IVF. IVF was a long physical and emotional journey that tested us as a couple in many ways. I remember the daily injections, the blood draws, and the frustration with my body. A miscarriage after our first round only created more doubt. Why couldn’t we conceive naturally? Why was this our path? Why couldn’t I do what other women were able to do so easily? Could we afford it? Over time I was able to connect with other women experiencing fertility challenges too, which was incredibly helpful. In all stages of motherhood it truly takes a village.
The Road to Conceiving Naturally
I didn’t think I could conceive naturally, so when I saw the positive test, I did a double take. After my pregnancy with Benji I experimented with a few different birth control options, but none worked for me. After going back and forth with my doctor I opted to give my body a break from hormones and pills. Could I even get my period on my own? I honestly didn’t know. I decided to take the year to focus on my hormonal health, stress, and being a mom.
I worked with a Registered Dietician and Functional Medicine Doctor to better understand my stress, diet, gut health, and hormonal profile. It was at that point I discovered I had PCOS, which had never been brought up to me previously. As I came to learn, PCOS greatly impacts fertility.
I also discovered the impact of stress on hormonal health. Stress comes in a variety of forms: restrictive diet/exercise, lack of sleep, high stress job, etc. I pulled back on my exercise routine, focused on adding additional nutrients, meat, and fat to my diet, left a high stress job, started a supplement regime, and head bloodwork done bi-monthly to check in on my adrenal and thyroid health.
I shared a bit about that process in this Instagram post.
Within a few months I got a cycle – yes! From there I started tracking, and discovered I was “regular” every 40-50 days versus the average 30. I had no idea if I ovulated or when. I just knew I went from not having a period in two years to having one every month and a half or so. This was a huge win. Prior to getting pregnant my husband and I were discussing buying ovulation sticks to start tracking and thinking about trying for baby two 🙂
This pregnancy has been way different than our first. You can say there are a bit more distractions: COVID, relocating to San Diego, buying and selling a house, and running after a busy toddler, to name a few . There are also a few things I’ve noticed that I didn’t experience in the first pregnancy that I am dealing with now:
- Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD) – The main symptom of Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction is pain at the front of the pelvic girdle. I honestly didn’t fully understand until I experienced this myself. It mainly shows up during lunges, so I tend to avoid those or anything that causes discomfort.
- Body Size – This is actually quite common with subsequent pregnancies, but I’m much larger (or so it feels) earlier. I was happily wearing maternity clothes by week 13.
- Anterior placenta – This is simply the positioning of my placenta, which is anterior (front) this time. There is no heath concern, but it does mean I do not feel the baby as strongly as I did during my first pregnancy. We are just reaching the stage where he is getting stronger now, so stay tuned.
- Breech – I have yet to have an ultrasound this trimester to confirm baby’s position. But, in previous ultrasounds the baby was in a breech position. I’m hoping he moves!
I am being far more proactive this time around with prenatal care. I see a Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist 1x/week. We focus on Pelvic Floor relaxation strategies, TVA activation, breath work, Glute Medius strength, and even how I stand, move my feet, and walk. It’s amazing how everything is connected! As my due date approaches our focus will also shift to pushing strategies and getting prepped for delivery.
Ready for Delivery
Am I ready? Probably not 🙂 The nursery isn’t done, we have zero newborn supplies, and I’m not sure I’m mentally ready to be a mom of two boys. But, one of the things I learned after Benji was born is to “go with the flow.” Everything will come together and before you know it, you find a routine. I’m also thankful we have family nearby this time. Even someone to come over for a few minutes so I can shower is amazing!