HOW Do I “Enjoy” My Last Pregnancy?

Things have been quiet around here. There are dust bunnies hiding between my sidebar ads. I think a tumbleweed just blew across my header and over my extremely out of date headshot.

People, I. AM. TIRED. And overwhelmed, and I’m running up against a deadline that is coming faster than that asteroid that Aerosmith had to shoot rockets at to save the earth while Ben Affleck and Liv Tyler made out… or something like that. The 90s were a long time ago.

I’m 1 day shy of 37 weeks pregnant with what I intend to be my LAST pregnancy. The next 3 weeks will feel like they crawl by and cease to exist all at the same time. I’ll blink, and a 3rd baby will be in my arms while my midwife stitches up whatever tears down there (which, btw, could be a giant vaginal cyst that could possibly rupture while I’m pushing… WHEEEE SO MUCH TMI AND HORRIFIC IMAGES FOR YOU!).

In the last 2 weeks, I’ve had to switch to a new midwife and a new hospital because my midwife was forced to resign. It’s not really my place to give more details than that. Just know that the decision left me angry and uncomfortable with the situation I was left with. So I got out of there. I was proactive, and at 36 weeks, I found a new practice.

In the meantime, Scott traveled nearly non-stop over the last month in an effort to pack everything in before baby comes. And the kids weren’t in summer school for a good portion of that.

My inbox is sitting at 482, and about 250 of those actually deserve/are expecting actual responses from me. Not just crappy spam pitches that I can delete.

I sit at my desk for 45 minutes, and I’m ready to go curl up in my recliner (yes, I got one!) and take a nap because the sitting upright is hard.

I intended to “enjoy” this pregnancy, to really soak it in. If this is my last, I know that I’ll, strangely, miss this when the misery is behind me. I’ll miss the sweet moments that I still manage to enjoy now. I’ll miss the freedom of walking around with my belly falling out of my pants. I’ll miss the little baby kicks. I’ll miss the great skin and hair.

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I just can’t figure out HOW, at this point, to savor this. HOW am I supposed to “enjoy” this? I feel terribly pressured to document it in some way, to really do something that I’ll be glad I did 3 years from now when I am a little sad that I won’t experience it anymore.

BUT WHAT IS THAT? And how do I manage to do that in the next 3 weeks while still managing to catch up with work and take care of the 2 kids I already have? Serious question.

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  1. First of all – good for you to have great skin and hair in pregnancy. Mine were the exact opposite. Second – I am the last person to give you a useful advice. This was my second and also last pregnancy. I went into it with the best effort to try and find something enjoyable about it and I am happy to report that I did not – both of my pregnancies are now officially considered an equivalent of a serving time. I made it through, it’s finally over and now I can live again! Ha! I had my baby a week ago and the last three weeks of pregnancy were just one uncomfortable hell. I am not sure what is that one thing you could do to look back at, but I think you have done a really good job already – with your blog, your photos, your honesty when sharing the pregnancy struggles like pica with the rest of us. In fact you have probably already done more than any other prego lady out there. So I guess – just don’t take it too seriously and push it too hard. You’ll miss being pregnant at some point. Missing things is good. It means good times were had once. Memories are sometimes enough. Especially when they are shared.

  2. Honestly, Jill?? We were almost programmed to be miserable while pregnant, yet miss it while not. Even if, while you’re this huge, and uncomfortable, and life is this crazy, even IF you managed to “savor” anything, or “enjoy” anything, you would still miss it. It happens.

    Take 5 minutes a day to just sit there and be in a moment when your child is inside of you. But other than that, there’s not much you can do. There are some women that “love” being pregnant. I am not one of those, and I can definitely sympathize. I LOVED being “cute” pregnant, but then I got HUGE and it’s hard to enjoy something that gives you non-stop heartburn and makes you feel like a cow. Jus’ sayin’.

    Put less pressure on yourself, Mama. It *might* be easier to enjoy if you’re not worried about if you’re enjoying it “enough”. 😉

  3. Rachael Kelley on

    Get some seriously fabulous maternity photos done after a day of pampering. One day, a few dozen gorgeous images, and you can go back to ‘real life’ right after. Weee!(?)

  4. Hi Jill,

    I hated my second pregnancy, and am thus banned by my husband from having a third. I know you’re super-exhausted and stressed and blah blah blah, but I wanted to post this little website we (a patient of mine and I) started that is going to destroy the stigma around perinatal/postpartum anxiety and depression: thebluedotproject(dot)org

    I remember reading your first posts about postpartum anxiety after Leyna was born and you were struggling, and thinking that I wished we had a way for women to know they weren’t the only one in their neighborhood/playgroup/preschool who went through that sh*t. I still refer women to your post on “mommy visions” on a regular basis, just because of how many comments there were from women with the same exact thing.

    I know things are crazy, and don’t expect a return email or anything. but keep up the hard work. I’ll be thinking about you. (I’m a reproductive psychiatrist at UC San Diego)

    –Katie Hirst

  5. I am 37 weeks myself, and have a 6 year old autistic son, who is out of school for the summer, and who’s behavior has sharply declined since the school structure is lacking, and maybe because he senses the baby is near. I am feeling more overwhlemed than ever at adding an infant to it all. But..I too, am trying to savor these last weeks. I mostly try to do it at night. Heh, that is the only time that I am not dealing with a screaming, tantrum throwing, non verbal 6 year old. I have insomnia, so I lay in our bed in the middle of the night, and try to spend that time focusing on the baby in my belly. I feel for his kicks and rolls. And now, he is so big, I can make out his butt and feet if I press around. He usually squirms in response to me pushing on him. I try to just take this time, that I would usually think is terrible (2am…gotta be at work in 4 hours…gotta sleep) but it is inevitable, I will be awake, I might aswell spend it focused on my squirming belly. It is not much, but I know I will remember someday that this is how I spent my sleepless nights, playing with the baby in my belly. Good luck.

  6. Write yourself little notes with the date on them. But you know what, this post itself is a reminder. It’s not a touchy feely feel good I’m in love with being pregnant and aw it’s my last, BUT it’s a testament to how you feel right now. Outside of that? Pictures. As many pictures as you can get of yourself, regardless of how you feel because as you know, shit ain’t always pretty. Give up the whole “gotta” do something to commemorate it idea. If you get a gust of energy, fine, but if you don’t, FINE. Concentrate on resting and taking care of you, keeping everybody safe, and you might likely regret not having a tangible thing that shows your level of enjoyment at being 37 damn weeks pregnant in the middle of summer. Oh, and voice memos! Leave yourself voice messages on your phone that you could potentially transcribe later. Look at me being somewhat helpful.

  7. Krista Mulcahy on

    The only time I really felt like I got time to enjoy my last pregnancy (and that was just #2) was when I was at prenatal yoga and in those moments of quiet where the instructor let us just sit and quasi-meditate. Otherwise I was too busy/worried about providers/taking care of #1 (our first child, not myself nor any bathroom euphemism).

  8. I am 10 days overdue with what i plan on being my last baby. I have three little girls ages 7, 4 & 2 with another little girl on the way (can you guess why i don’t want anymore kids? lol) I have tried the entire pregnancy to just sit back and enjoy this time, knowing that i will never have it again but like you said, how am i supposed to do that while keeping my other little’s alive? honestly i don’t know… i feel like this has been the hardest pregnancy that i have experienced thus far and to be quite honest, i don’t think i’m going to miss it. I know in a few years when my last little is done nursing that i will try to convince my husband to have another but this time it won’t work. I hope you find some peace in your last weeks because i know i sure haven’t lol

  9. Tricia Miller on

    Mama, it seems to me that you’re not entirely sure if this IS your last pregnancy. So don’t even worry about it. I have a very strong feeling that you’ll have another one. It’s like a Jedi mind trick and a Spock thing, so, yeah. It’s FOR REAL.

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