When you're pregnant, your hormones aren't the only thing that get sent into overdrive. You've got so much on your plate, from doctors appointments, to setting up a space for your baby, to figuring out how a baby fits into your work life and relationship. In other words, it's easy to start obsessing over every move you make by the time you near your due date, which is why there are a lot of fights every pregnant woman has with herself in the third trimester. No really, this is a thing.
During my pregnancy with my first born, I felt pretty confident about life in general and my choices. Until I reached my third trimester, of course. When month seven rolled around, and my pregnancy was super real at that point, I went into freak out mode. I especially remember discovering that I hadn't filled out a book someone had gifted me called "The Belly Book", where you document (in photographs) your growing belly, how you felt each month of your pregnancy, what you craved, and how big your baby was at that time. I believe there were spaces for ultrasound photos as well.
When I noticed I had completely forgotten to complete this project, I felt like a slacker and immediately started scrambling. I raged at myself for having been so thoughtless. While I internally fumed, I downloaded every photo I could find that showed my stomach and tried to make it fit the book's timeline. I decorated the book's pages, and filled out that sucker like a boss pregnant woman who had been diligently tracking her belly all along. I imagined that one day, when my baby was grown, I would show him how hard his mama had worked to write down every moment of his fetus life.
I never opened the book since having completed it. It collects dust on a shelf next to the photo albums and I doubt my son would ever find himself thrilled about his mom taking selfies. At the time, however, it felt like the most important thing I could do, and that my not having done it was worthy of a good self-scolding.
That was not the only fight I had with myself during my third trimester, either. Here are a few other kinds of fights I had, that I think other moms nearing their due date can relate to:
The "Do I Really Need More Stuff On My Registry?" Fight
Deciding what to put on their baby registry is, arguably, one of the hardest decisions you'll ever make. With all the information out there about "the best baby products for this" and "the baby thing you cannot live without for that," it is no wonder so many moms feel like they're losing their minds over which bouncer, sleep sac, tub, or high chair to use. In the third trimester your hormones are going nuts and your due date is imminent, so your brain is nearly unable to make discerning decisions.
The "Should I Change My Nursery Color Scheme?" Fight
Your third trimester hormones want you to know one thing and one thing only: everything is wrong. Your nursery color, that crib you got as a hand me-down, and even the bumper that you splurged on (because the crib was free). It's all wrong, and that's because you probably just don't understand the little human growing in your belly.
You'll probably have to have a long talk over two different paint colors.
The "Why Didn't I Keep A Pregnancy Journal?" Fight
You've had that adorable pregnancy journal sitting by your bed or on your dresser for months and months, taunting you, challenging you to pick up a pen and write a full sentence in it. But you literally couldn't muster the willpower. Not even once. And now that you're almost near the end of your journey, it hits you: "What if I forget all of this ever happened, because I never recorded it? Should you spend the rest of your pregnant days starting from Page One and rehashing all the memories of pregnancy so you can share it with your child one day?"
You attempt to to sit with said journal after eating a big sandwich one afternoon, and then realize that it is all too much. Maybe you'll use it for your next baby.
The "Can I Drink Just A Little Alcohol Now?" Fight
You see the drink just sitting there, so innocently in it's glass. Maybe it is a fizzy drink with a refreshing slice of lime. Or perhaps your poison is more along the lines of a pink-hued rosé. How could something so delicious and so full of fun-time-memories be so, so bad? But no. You can't. Or can you?
The third-trimester mama knows that technically she "shouldn't" drink, but every time she sits down at a restaurant, her friends or partner (and inner voice) like to tell her that "it should probably be fine by now." You know, since they're, like, medical experts and everything.
The "Is It Bad If I Eat This Prohibited Food?" Fight
All you want is some brie and a bite of an Italian sub sandwich. Does that make you a bad person and an unfit mother? You're not sure. All you know is that you want all of the "bad foods" so bad.
The "Is it Borderline Obscene To Engage In Sexual Activity Of Any Kind At This Stage?" Fight
Despite the fact that your belly takes up most of the bed, your partner somehow still finds it in their heart (and loins) to want to do dirty, nasty, wonderful things with you. Weirdly, you're down with that.
Why is nature so strange, you wonder? When you're in your third trimester it just doesn't seem right to have sexual relations of any kind, because it feels like a baby is there just watching. Knowing.
The "Am I Or Am I Not Actually In Labor?" Fight
When just walking the wrong way can send you into horrible abdominal spasms, and you've never been in labor before, it is hard to tell what is and isn't a labor pain. You will wonder openly about whether it is time to fetch your hospital bag or not, for almost the entire duration of your third trimester.
The "Have I Crossed Everything Off My To-Do List?" Fight
If you're anything like I was, you'll think of your due date in the same way you'd think of, say, an AP Exam. I prepared for my due date in much the same way, having all my books read, all my lists of what to bring to the hospital crossed off, my how-to-get-to-the-hospital-plan mapped out several different ways.
The "Should I Have Enlisted More Help For When Baby Comes?" Fight
Now that "the end" is nigh, you're wondering if your plan to wing this whole newborn thing was such a great idea. Some of the moms in your newborn class who have already given birth seem to be having a tough time of it with their babies, and now you're realizing that maybe having a baby is, well, hard. You struggle with whether you should take up your mother-in-law's offer to move in with you for two weeks when the baby comes, or if that will be a kiss of death.
The "Did I Go With The Right Birth Plan?" Fight
For the duration of your pregnancy, you've told your doctor that you want things to go a certain way when you-know-what hits the fan. Lately, though, you're obsessing about the pain that you're about to endure during birth and whether you are truly made out for this Earth Goddess Mother Warrior stuff you've been reading about on all the blogs. Will you regret backing down from a "natural" birth? Should you stick with the original plan? You wish someone could just decide for you, because you're just so tired.