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The End of the Fourth Trimester

It has been 12 weeks since our little baby joined us in the world, and I truly cannot believe so much time has gone by.

  • The first 12 weeks of my pregnancy felt like they dragged on. I was constantly worried about doing the “wrong thing” and hurting the baby. I was convinced that every single change in my body meant something was wrong (at first), and it was so hard for me to just live in the moment and enjoy my pregnancy.
  • After my 12 week appointment, it felt like a weight was lifted! We started telling people outside of our immediate circle and overall things just felt more like we’d have a  baby soon.
  • I also had a doctor’s appointment today to discuss my anxiety medication. While I haven’t actually felt any postpartum anxiety or depression, I have found it harder to focus on my job and to remain calm with everything I have going on. I’m really glad I sought the help, because even just vocalizing what exactly was going on helped me so much.

Exercise

  • During my first trimester I was terrified to exercise.
  • During my second trimester I started doing yoga twice a week at a studio in town (Baby Moon– they offer virtual classes and virtual class packages for prenatal and postpartum women now! Totally check it out :)).
  • Postpartum, I couldn’t wait to be cleared to exercise! I had been walking at least once a day towards the end of my pregnancy and I cannot tell you how difficult that was getting. A short trip around the block took ages. Then, once we brought my daughter home, we started walking again. She needed the sunshine to help with her jaundice and I needed to just move.
  • My legs still aren’t what they were before I was pregnant, and I’m honestly afraid to try to run because I think they might just crumble. Instead, I’ve added PiYo to my workout routine and I thank my body every day I make it through a workout.

Food So you know how everybody says you’re “eating for two” while you’re pregnant? Yeah, they really need to emphasize that you’re eating for two while breastfeeding!

  • When I first started breastfeeding I was never full! One thing that kept me going was No Cow Protein Bars (my favorite is the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough). I have inhaled many a No Cow bar, mostly in the middle of the night, but also in the middle of the afternoon.
  • It didn’t feel like I had lost my appetite that much during my first trimester, sure, I considered potatoes a food group (mores than usual), but I thought I was eating a normal amount. I now have some serious questions about “normal”.
  • Cooking with a newborn: just figure out what works! We switched to more simple meals that feed an army, and it hs been working out great for us! Since baby was early, I didn’t have time to prepare any freezer meals. We got 2 weeks worth of food from a meal train (thank goodness!), but everything else has just been quick and easy, sometimes stirring one handed while bouncing a baby.

Body Image Here’s the thing: there has been exactly no point in my life where I disliked how I looked. I am way too self absorbed of a person to ever think there’s something wrong with m appearance.

  • When I look at my postpartum body, I see a body that grew my daughter. And when I look at my daughter I see a life that I sustained for eight-ish months. I don’t care the I have stretch marks or extra skin. Now, as ever before, I care if I get out of breath walking up the stairs. I care if my arms feel weak after carrying groceries inside. I care if I can walk (or run) a mile. Whatever my body looks like while I’m doing that really doesn’t matter to me.
  • I’ll be honest though, when I look at the scale or see my BMI after a doctor’s appointment I wonder if I can still be truly healthy in this body. That honestly helps keep me going to achieve my health and fitness goals. It’s a far better motivator than “did you run out of breath today?” I try not to put any stock in it.

Finale I am so thankful and blessed to have been on this journey into motherhood. I feel like this is my first real reflection on the past year. There’s so much more I could say, and maybe I will some day, but for now I’m just going to leave this here and thank my lucky stars for my health and my family.

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