Week 23: Summer Fun & Sciatica
This week has been a fun one, despite starting to feel some of the aches and pains of pregnancy. We got to spend lots of time swimming and camping, and my big old pregnant self is holding up surprisingly well, as long as I keep moving. It’s when I stop and attempt to sit down (or God forbid, try to get back up again!) that I have issues–oh well; you win some, you lose some.
It’s been hot here in Ohio, but between air conditioning and our friend’s pool, it hasn’t been too bad. My doctor warned me that swelling can get worse in hot weather, but so far I haven’t noticed any problems with it, and I’m thankful. I didn’t have too much trouble with swelling in any of my other pregnancies, so hopefully that’ll be true with this one too.
Swimming has been a great way to stay active with the kids, both because it keeps me cool and because the water helps me feel a little less like an elephant. All three kids love to swim, and since we’ve been going at least once a week, they’re all getting really comfortable in the water. Both of the older kids just strap on their water wings and go, and even little Jack is getting pretty brave. Watching all three kids gain some independence in the water is just another sign that I might actually survive being the mom of four kids ages five and under–the more they can do for themselves, the more hope I have!
We finally got to take the camper out again, and had a great weekend with friends, including even more swimming. Gracie has turned into the sugar-intake police recently, and I got a severe lecture for eating a s’more around the campfire. To be fair, I only had half a bun with my hot dog, and avoided most of the other carbs with dinner, so I wasn’t too far out of line having a sweet treat, even with my gestational diabetes. I sometimes worry that I talk too much about the diabetes and what I can and can’t eat within her earshot; I’ve caused her to worry and monitor what I’m eating because she’s concerned about my health and the baby’s. It’s very sweet of her, but I don’t want to put so much adult concern in her little five-year-old lap. She’s a sweetheart, but I’m going to try not to make such a fuss about food in her presence. I really want her to have a healthy relationship with food as she gets older, so I guess we should start now.
As my belly grows and shifts farther out in front, I’m noticing more issues in my back. I find that wearing my sneakers around the house helps when I’m cooking or doing other chores that keep me on my feet for a while. Usually I’m fine as long as I keep moving, but I look and sound like an pregnant lady when I try to sit down. Something about the movement or angle of sitting down causes a sharp, shooting pain to go up my back and down my left leg. Then it takes a little adjusting to get comfortable, both sitting and lying down. Getting up is even less pretty, and after three pregnancies, I know it’s only going to get worse. It’s bad enough having to get out of bed multiple times each night to check on kids or pee, but getting from a laying to a standing position is becoming such a production that it’s both literally and figuratively a big pain in the butt.
Other than the back pain, I feel like this part of the pregnancy is going pretty well. My blood sugar levels have been pretty good, and my weight gain is under control and pretty much where my doctors want me to be gaining slowly but steadily. My energy level is still fairly decent most days, at least decent enough that I can get most things accomplished before my eventual crash.
My little guy is extremely active in there. He seems really strong, and his big brothers and sister have been enjoying feeling him kick. Sometimes we can even see my belly move when he does his acrobatics, and that’s pretty cool too, although I could do without the attacks on my bladder and colon that somehow always occur just as I’m ready to fall asleep at night. Not comfortable! He also seems to get the hiccups a lot lately, which is such a weird feeling. I’m just thankful to feel him moving around and know that he seems to be developing the way he should. So far, so good, and pretty soon the countdown to his birthday will begin.