Taking Charge and the Third Trimester

You guys. How is it possible that I am going to be in the third trimester in a few days? Wasn’t it just a few weeks ago that I was so overwhelmed I hung up on the nurse who said the words I’ll never forget?

“Congratulations, you are very pregnant!

Things have been going so smoothly. After 2 years of spending every last bit of my emotional reserves on keeping it all together, I’ve delighted in the ordinary of the past 6 months. I took relaxing baths, read novels, tried new recipes, attempted to take up crochet (but it’s been 6 months and I’ve still not finished the baby blanket I started so I realized that crochet is not my thing.) I didn’t spend hours researching. Not only did I not research IVF or adoption programs, I also didn’t research baby stuff. Other than my weekly email update from Baby Centre & Lucie’s List and the occasional Pinterest article, I haven’t researched baby advice at all. But now, the relaxation of the first two trimesters is starting to wear off and this is getting real. Baby girl’s kicks are getting stronger and they are a constant reminder that she is coming soon. Her nursery is well underway and she has a name (unless we change it again!). I’ve started thinking of my pregnancy in terms of how many weeks are left rather than how many have passed. I suggested to my Manager that we hire my replacement soon (which was totally bittersweet because I love my job and it’s going to feel so weird handing over the reigns to my program for a year.) With the arrival of the third trimester, I’ve started to focus on preparing and taking charge of my prenatal care.

I had my second appointment with my midwife on Tuesday and I was already asked to make some decisions for baby. She explained that newborns are routinely given an injection of Vitamin K after delivery to encourage blood clotting. She said it’s important because Vitamin K does not pass to the baby through breast milk and asked for my consent. I was fine with this injection and readily gave my consent. She also asked for my consent to apply antibiotic eye ointment to prevent an eye infection that could be passed to baby if I had gonorrhea or chlamydia. To be honest, I really don’t like the idea of the eye ointment and although I initially gave my consent I want to discuss it with her again during my next visit. After leaving, I did a little research and discovered that automatic erythromycin prophylaxis is no longer used in the United Kingdom, Australia, Norway, or Sweden and it made me second guess my consent. I don’t like the idea of administering antibiotics to the baby 1 hour after birth especially considering Andino and I have been tested for STDs more times than I can remember over the last couple years because it was required for IVF. I chose a midwife because I wanted to feel empowered to take an active role in the decision making. Although I feel a little uncomfortable questioning her recommendation for the eye antibiotics, I am going to do it because it’s what I think is best.

After discussing the newborn medications, she asked if we have a car seat to bring baby home from the hospital in ( we don’t, but we still have so much time to get one, don’t we?) and we briefly discussed how the delivery will be. She says she will come to our home and be with us until I reach 5-6 cm at which point we will go to the hospital to deliver. She discussed taking baths and nitrous oxide (laughing gas) as pain relief options. She didn’t even mention an epidural which was fine with me since I don’t plan to have one. Recently, I ordered Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth from Amazon and I am really excited for it to arrive. As I said, now that I’m in the third trimester I’m ready to research and get prepared!

Oh and p.s. I updated my bump page again. I’m (finally) at the stage where it’s completely obvious I’m pregnant which is quite exciting.