Six Things for Sunday: 27 Weeks Edition

February 4, 2018 at 7:18 pm

Copy of six things for sunday

#1 SPD Update

A couple of weeks ago I blogged about my late-pregnancy nemesis, Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD). As pregnancy hormones relax the pelvis, sometimes they work a little too well on the pelvic joints and things spread out more than they should. Having an “abnormal gap” in the symphysis pubis joint becomes more common the more pregnancies a woman has. During my 5th pregnancy, I had horrible SPD pain, and a few weeks ago I started noticing some twinges as I move into the third trimester of my 6th pregnancy. In my blogpost, I shared some things I was planning to try to keep the SPD away or at least minimal. Below I’ll share a few notes about each now that some time has passed.

  • MaternaLift Support bodysuit
    • I found that the size I purchased was not adequate for my long torso. The edges of the shoulder straps were uncomfortably digging into my shoulders and the fabric in the groin area was really  digging into my skin down below. I bought the size recommended for my weight, but it was definitely not long enough for my body.
    • I also found the hole in the groin area (designed to make it possible to use the restroom without completely undressing) just really weird and hard to get used to.
    • I actually ended up cutting the lower part of the garment off. I figured it was better to use a possibly-slightly-less-effective version than to waste the money and not wear it at all because it was too uncomfortable. It still gives good back and pelvic support, but now it’s much less annoying.
    • I’ve found that using the upper-portion of the MaternaLift bodysuit in combination with a stretchy Blanqui BellyBand and velcro belly belt over them all works really well to give my pelvis a triple-layer of extra support when I feel like I need it.
  • Exercises for SPD
    • I really like the exercises for the pelvis in Dr. Kevin Hansen’s system. Every time I have done them, it has definitely felt like my body was saying, “Yes, more of this.” It really does feel like they help my pelvis realign and balance and adjust and just all-around feel fetter.
  • Lecithin
    • I’ve been eating eggs a lot more frequently over the past few weeks.
    • Two blog readers made comments on my facebook page indicating that taking iodine eliminated their SPD pain. I did a little digging to see if I could find more info about why that might happen since I hadn’t seen it mentioned anywhere online in my SPD research. All I could find was a couple of little mentions about a synergy that happens between iodine and lecithin. Iodine seems to help activate lecithin. And lecithin helps keep joints flexible and happy. So I guess it does make sense that iodine would benefit the pelvis in that way.
    • So I started taking iodine, usually along with my eggs in the morning to try to maximize the synergy between the two.

It’s hard to know which of the things I’ve been doing have made the difference, but so far my SPD pain has been negligible. I hope it stays that way!

#2 Third Trimester

Now that I’ve reached the end of my 26th week of pregnancy, I am now officially in my 3rd trimester. Here’s what that has looked like for me:

  • Tons of nesting behavior. Gathering, cleaning, and organizing baby clothes and birth supplies. Must be the late-pregnancy spike in prolactin at work!
  • Lots of big feelings. Today I found myself overwhelmed more than once by emotion. I think it’s partly all the oxytocin I’m oozing. I just feel so much love for my children and friends and other people’s babies and humanity in general. I find myself crying much more easily, but usually out of joy and love and happiness. The thought of this probably being my last pregnancy/baby also gets to me these days.

#3 My Grandma 

IMG_6956_2Speaking of feeling emotional, today’s weeping episode happened because someone made a comment at church that got me thinking about my grandmother. I suppose it was sort of fitting that I was thinking about her today because yesterday would have been her 95th birthday. By the time I give birth to this baby, it will have been six years since my grandma passed away.

I’ve written a lot about why she is so special to me before, if you want to know more (HERE is one of those posts). Today some of my most precious memories of her were brought to mind, and I just couldn’t contain the tears that streamed down my face, despite being in public, surrounded by people who likely wondered what all the fuss was about.

#4 Gestational Diabetes Testing 

At my last prenatal appointment with my midwife, she said that my next appointment (28-weeks) is when they typically do several mid-pregnancy tests, including the glucose tolerance test for gestational diabetes. She also told me they always offer these tests, but it’s up to me whether I want to accept or decline the testing. It was one of the first times I have had a care provider so clearly demonstrate my autonomy and empower me in my decision-making capacity in a patient-provider interaction.

Not gonna lie… I hate the glucose tolerance test. The idea of skipping it was uber-appealing to me, especially since gestational diabetes has never been an issue for me in my five previous pregnancies. But I wanted some time to think about it and do a little research to be sure I could really feel confident and comfortable skipping it this time.

I asked for opinions about gestational diabetes testing in a private birthy facebook group I belong to, and I learned that loads of people skip the glucose tolerance test. I also learned some really eye-opening facts about gestational diabetes that I had never been exposed to before. One woman shared a link to some research compiled by Henci Goer (love her). The article is titled, “Gestational Diabetes: The Emperor Has No Clothes.”  Among the statements I found most striking:

An entire medical industry has grown up around diagnosing and treating gestational diabetes (GD) in the belief that doing so prevents perinatal deaths, congenital anomalies, neonatal complications, macrosomic babies, and because of fetal macrosomia, birth injuries and excessive cesarean rates. However, diagnosis and treatment of gestational diabetes don’t fulfill any of the above criteria.

Hence Goer’s article in addition to my other research and pondering have helped me to feel good about skipping the glucose tolerance test this time. I also felt better about it when I got honest with myself and realized that I would likely be more liberal with sugar if I was cleared of GD. Whereas I would probably be more careful to avoid sugar if I wasn’t sure. Sometimes not knowinis healthier, I guess.

Definitely do your own research and consult with your partner and your care provider to determine if gestational diabetes testing is right for you. I just know that for me for this pregnancy, skipping the test feels peaceful.

#5  Thrifty Birth and Baby Prep

Over the years we have sold, shared, or donated a lot of our baby stuff, especially after my 4th baby became a toddler and my mental health took a plunge. We thought there was no way we’d ever have any more babies, so we got rid of most of it. I did save my baby carriers and a some of my favorite baby outfits, but during my 5th pregnancy, we had to buy a lot of stuff. Now that we’re having another boy, we needed more boy stuff. We also have a long list of items my midwife gave us to purchase for the birth. Because I’m a shameless Goodwill addict, I’ve been looking there for a lot of the things we have needed. Here are some of the items we’ve found far cheaper “second-hand” than they would have been brand new (especially on 50% off Saturdays):

  • Unopened packages of newborn/infant diapers ($2.99)
  • Unopened packages of adult diapers (for postpartum bleeding) ($2.99)
  • Unopened packages of maxi pads ($2.99)
  • Nice, soft towels for the home birth ($1.50 or so)
  • Dresser for the baby’s clothes ($15)
  • Tons of baby clothes ($.99-$1.99 for most items)
  • Nice muslin swaddling blankets ($1.99 or so)
  • Baby carriers (I once found an organic embroidered Ergobaby carrier identical to this one for like $4.00. Two days ago, I found a whole bolt of nice neutral, breathable, stretchy fabric for $2.99 with about 8 yards…more than enough to make two no-sew Moby-style baby wraps.)

I’m still on the look-out for a few more items, but I have plenty of time to look for them.

#6  Upcycled Bassinet and Bedding

Yesterday my husband took the toddler bed we’ve had since 2005 or so (handed down to us from my brother after he was done having kids) and he cut it and put it back together to make a little bassinet for the new baby. I love taking something old and making it new again.

I made the mattress with padding and materials I already had, so it was basically free.

Also, I saw these adorable Mexican Baja baby blankets on Pinterest, and I thought… I could make that… easy peasy. I happened to have a whole bunch of Mexican blankets in my linen closet I had purchased for yoga mat alternatives (from Goodwill, of course). So I took one of them, cut it to baby-size, and added a soft underside using scraps of fabric I already had. The ones on Pinterest were selling for $49.99, but I made mine for basically nothing. Yay!

Too bad it probably won’t be cold enough for my baby to use it until December! Sigh.