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34 Week Pregnancy Update

Wow – 34 weeks! Only 6 weeks to go, although Matt and I both have a feeling she’ll arrive a little late. We’ll see… things are starting to feel a little more real over here now that we’ve been taking some baby prep related classes and getting the room ready! Exciting!

34 weeks pregnant

Check out my previous pregnancy posts first if you missed them:

34 Week Pregnancy Update

Baby Size: Over 4 pounds and about the size of a cantaloupe! She also apparently has fully formed nails now according to my app – so cool.

Btw – this slideshow from the Museum of Science + Industry in Chicago showing how the body changes week by week during pregnancy is REALLY cool. Crazy how organs literally just get shoved out of the way! (Thank you to blog reader Lisa for sharing this with me in the comments section of my Pregnancy, Body Image, and Intuitive Eating post!)

Symptoms: Feeling progressively more awkward and uncomfortable, but still pretty good as far as things go, which I’m grateful for! I think the baby is starting to get more smushed in there though… if I’m not sitting up straight, I feel pressure/kicking under my right rib. Good incentive to have excellent posture. ;) I’m definitely having some more nausea and headaches lately again… it’s like the first trimester in that it’s worst at night, and if I’m too hungry (which is hard because feeling nauseated doesn’t exactly entice you to eat…)

The main symptom I’m dealing with, though, is that my digestive system is a disaster (and has been for most of the pregnancy, but it seems to be getting worse). I’m thinking of switching to a prenatal with probiotics to see if that helps a little. I’m sure some of this is normal/just pregnancy and/or stress related, but I also had to take some antibiotics back in the first trimester due to a UTI (apparently those are common when pregnant), and I’m wondering if that threw things off a bit? Any tips are welcome… I know mostly with pregnancy people seem to complain about constipation, but for me it’s the opposite problem (diarrhea, yay… sorry TMI).

Currently Missing: Knowing for sure which foods I will like/enjoy. It’s so hit or miss right now – the belly is quite picky and hard to predict! Pasta usually seems to be a win, though, especially with a red meat sauce. :)

pasta true food kitchen

Sleep: Besides waking up a bunch (I seem to be wide awake around 3 a.m. many nights and it can take an hour to fall back asleep) and it being a HUGE ordeal to try to switch to the other side during the night (I have a billion pillows to move, plus sitting up is super awkward/hard right now), I’ve been sleeping relatively well the past 2 weeks, in large part thanks to the fact that we haven’t had dogs waking us up really early. (They have been away at a 2 week board and train – see my 32 week pregnancy update for more info.)

Cravings and favorite foods: This is really hit or miss/all over the place. Some days I feel normal in terms of food… and then other days I’m having cereal or canned ravioli (last night, no shame) for dinner. Fruit, dairy, and carbs are still almost always a safe bet, though I’m always more able to eat more interesting (and savory/veggie-packed) stuff earlier in the day. Mediterranean food and I have been having a moment… this lamb wrap with tzatziki sauce I had the other day for lunch (at Cassatt’s Kiwi Café in Arlington) was awesome. I’m also loving hummus (but only with pita bread, not with crackers randomly which normally I love), and salads with fruit on them (especially watermelon).

cassatts kiwi cafe lunch

Oh, and burgers and fries are generally always a win. :)

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Food aversions: Mehhhhhh, see above. So hit or miss. Generally dinner is always the hardest, though – so hard to tell what will go over well until I start eating it!

Exercise: I’m still missing running (although the weird return of hot/humid weather over the past week had me not really missing it as much as usual), but I continue to be REALLY grateful that my body is cool with me continuing my fun boot camp friend dates, yoga classes, walks/hikes, and swims. I always feel a thousand times more like myself when I get in a good workout – working out is great stress relief and social time for me, too. I will keep it up until my body doesn’t want me to anymore!

working out at 34 weeks pregnant

My routine as of late has been 2 boot camps per week (usually 1 with just Chelsea and 1 with both Chelsea and Kathleen), plus a solo yoga class and/or a swim, and then lots of walking and an occasional hike. In yoga classes, I’m mostly going to normal (but lower key) vinyasa-style classes and just modifying as necessary.

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In my boot camps, I’m also just modifying as necessary – usually with a combination of lighter weights, going slower (if it’s rounds of something, I do less reps so I’m not super behind everyone else/holding people up), and occasionally doing different moves entirely. If something feels weird or too intense, I do something else, or a lower key variation. Trainers have been helpful in giving me variation/modification ideas, although they don’t always know what’s pregnancy friendly, so it’s been good that I usually have ideas of my own, too. :)

working out at 34 weeks pregnant

Mood: In my last pregnancy update (also under “mood”) I shared the stressful behind the scenes situation we’ve been dealing with with the dogs – read that first if you missed it. They come back from their 2 week board and train boot camp on Monday, and to be honest, I’m really stressed out about it because having them back means that we have to actually decide 100% either way about Ashe and put a plan in motion ASAP before we run out of time. Any time I’ve thought about it or Matt and I have talked about it over the past 2 weeks while they were gone I basically immediately burst into tears – I’m just having such a hard time with all of it. It would be upsetting normally, but I know pregnancy hormones aren’t helping – I cry so much more easily than usual and have a hard time shaking myself out of it once I start, too.

The more Matt and I have talked about it though the more we think it’s the best decision for both us and Ashe to find her a new home, even though the idea of not having our little pup anymore makes us so sad. :( I know that I’m projecting human emotions onto her and that she’ll likely be totally fine and move on WAY more quickly than we do, but it’s still really hard to not think about her being confused and sad and lonely, and I feel so guilty. We also discovered that per the adoption contract with the rescue organization we got her from in Asheville, NC that we are legally required to return her to them in the case we don’t keep her, which breaks my heart because I wanted to try to find her a home directly to make sure she’d be somewhere she was loved and where they really knew and understood her situation and could work with it. I hate the idea of her back at a shelter, even though I know the rescue organization is wonderful and they probably have that policy for a good reason. The other issue, though, is that this means Matt driving 8 hours back to Asheville with her, which would obviously be hard on him emotionally, and would also mean he’d be 8 hours away which makes me really nervous given that we’d probably only be a month out from our due date by then. Ugh. We’ve been chatting with the rescue organization some and it sounds like they may be able to have a volunteer meet us half way since this is a unique situation… that would be a huge help.

So… we’ll see how she is when we get her back, and we have a friend staying with us overnight next week (we warned him we have a) no guest room or guest bed anymore, and b) a dog that hates strangers, but he still wanted to give it a go) so that will be a good test run to see how much progress she has really made. But we are going to have to decide ASAP either way, and if she’s not light years better I don’t see how it’s going to be manageable with a child when we will have more people in and out of the house all the time, including babysitters who will be there without us, etc. I mean, for example, what is going to happen if I go into labor in the middle of the night and our dog daycare places aren’t open?! No one else can go to our house and get her and bring her there because she will be so aggressive if they enter our home. And what happens if we need a babysitter at night when she’s not at dog daycare? Do we just lock her in a room the entire time? What if we’re gone for quite awhile? I also know that once the baby comes our attention and time will be much more divided and I’m not sure how able we’ll be to manage/prevent situations in which Ashe might potentially get territorial/aggressive, either. It all just feels like too much, as much as we don’t want it to be. :( I’ll keep you guys updated. <3

Reading: Not reading anything baby-related right now, but we are doing a ton of group in-person baby prep classes. I mentioned that last weekend we did an infant skills 101 class, and on Tuesday night we took a breastfeeding class! It was actually awesome and very worthwhile – really informative and fascinating, too – the body is so amazing. Next week we have an infant CPR class, and the week after we decided to sign up for a labor/delivery birthing class after all! Thank you for all your advice on my post on Monday asking about whether those were worthwhile – thanks to blog reader Dana we ended up finding a class outside of the hospital that is only 3 hours long, which feels way more do-able than the 6 to 8 hour options our hospital offers. So, I figure this way we can feel more prepared but not be totally overwhelmed with info. Win/win!

Baby Room Progress: We finally have a legit looking baby room!! I took an afternoon off from work last week and my mom and I got the room totally cleared out of all the random old stuff and started putting together some of the new baby furniture that got delivered that day.

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Over last weekend, Matt and I finished putting all the furniture together and moved things around to figure out a configuration for everything so we could order one last thing, a baby bookcase. Then, my mom and I spent another afternoon putting all the baby clothing away (she washed and organized everything into size groups for us – lifesaver), and getting all the baby toys and other gadgets  organized/put away. Whew!! I think we are pretty set – in addition to the generous baby shower gifts we received, we also got a TON of hand me down clothes and other stuff from friends, which really helped to fill in the gaps. (Sidenote – BABY SOCKS! I die. They are so tiny!!)

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We still need to finish some things up and decorate a bit, but I’m feeling good that we have things mostly ready to go now, even though I know we don’t really NEED to since she’ll be sleeping in a little bassinet by our bed for awhile. But still – I wanted to have it done before she got here since I know things will be crazy once she arrives. It’s so fun to look into the closet and see this… ahhh!!

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I’ll share a full photo of the nursery once we finish it – stay tuned!

Whew – this was a long one today… apparently I had a lot to say! Thank you for reading and sharing in this special time with us. <3 My next update will be at 36 weeks. Until then!

p.s. In case you missed it, yesterday I shared my maternity leave +child care plans!

Comments

  1. 1

    Hi!! I had similar digestive issues when I was pregnant. My midwife suggested it may be hormonal (like PMS symptoms). What helped was: yogurt, probiotics (I took gummy ones by Olly bc they sat well), gatorade or pedialyte, and gas-X. sometimes Tums seemed to
    help when I had an acid belly. I definitely felt better within days of birth. I am
    certain you are doing the best you can. you are doing a good job!

    • 2

      Thank you for the tips!

      • 3

        I was also going to recommend Activia. I have had a very messed up digestive system this pregnancy (alternate b/w constipation and diahrea) and I find when I eat the Activia regularly, it is noticeably better. I take prenatals with probiotics, but honestly, I’m not sure that has made much of a difference. I do feel like the yogurt helped though. Good luck!

        • 4

          I’ve been eating a ton of yogurt the whole pregnancy since that’s been one of the foods I haven’t felt an aversion to, but it doesn’t seem to make a difference!

          • 5

            I had the same problem despite being on rx iron supplements which tend to constipate. I took probiotics but it didn’t make a difference. I’m back to normal postpartum. Also, I was convinced isn’t deliver late, but ended up having my son three week son early!

  2. 9

    Do you have any pregnancy app suggestions? Some seem so cheesy and not informative and there are so many to pick from!

  3. 12

    I had digestive issues with both pregnancies! I went from constipation in early pregnancy to easily getting diarrhea in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters. It’s totally normal! And mine went away as soon as I was no longer pregnant.

    I want to say I totally understand your reservations about Ashe. And if the behaviors continue when she returns I would rehome/return her to the rescue. It’s too bad you aren’t allowed to do the rehoming yourself. But hopefully now they will know that she has this issue and can either continue to work with her to correct it or properly pair her with her new family based on it. But it doesn’t sound like a situation that is going to work for your family and lifestyle.

    • 13

      Thanks Allyssa – and that’s good news about the digestive issues going away after pregnancy… hoping that will be the case for me too, especially if nothing I try between now and then helps!

  4. 14

    My PCP recommended Florastor probiotics to help… “reset” things after a nasty run-in with antibiotic consequences, blech. Apparently they have the best balance of bacteria? Who knows. It worked!

    Keeping you in my thoughts re: the dogs. The training she’s gotten these last two weeks will be an enormous boost for her whether or not her forever home is with you or someone else, so hopefully that is some comfort! We were our first dog’s third family (the first family’s three daughters turned out to be allergic, and the second family needed to rehome her as the husband was on long-term deployment and his expectant wife could not manage two dogs and an infant alone), and even as a six-year-old dog she settled in to our family life for the next seven years as loved as ever a dog could be. Hoping for the best for all of you.

    • 15

      Thank you for the probiotics recommendation, and for your kind words about the dog situation, too. That gives me a lot of hope and comfort to know that your dog found her forever home and was perfectly happy despite bouncing around a bit earlier. And you’re right – I’ve been reminding myself that regardless of whether we keep her, the training we’ve done for her will not be wasted because it will all help her and her new owners in the future. <3

  5. 16

    I love these posts! It’s funny because before this year when my favorite bloggers became pregnant…I quit reading… Not sure why, but I just felt like I was so far away from that phase in my life and to be honest, I didn’t want to have to think about it. But for some reason with you and Kylie it’s been different! I am so excited for both of you! Prayers for you guys about your dog situation. I know how stressed out I would be, too. We rehomed our cat once after 7 years of trying to make it work and it was very stressful. However, we do NOT regret it one bit now. It was truly the best for us, our family and our home, and probably the cat, too!

    • 17

      I’m so glad you’re enjoying these posts, Amber, thank you for reading! I’m so sorry to hear about your cat – but it sounds like you made the right decision for everyone involved. <3

  6. 18

    I’ll be following along for any tips on digestion. Mine has also switched from one end of the spectrum to the same issues you’re having. Not fun! At only 14 weeks, I have a long way to go, so I hope it doesn’t stay like this.

  7. 20
    Track Buddy says

    Oh man…when I was pregnant I cried constantly! About everything…NPR…a beautiful flower…music…anything! xoxoxo

  8. 21

    Regardless of what you end up deciding for Ashe, it is clear that you have done your very very best trying to make the situation work. Ashe will be better off due to having had you in his lives even if it turns out that it was only for a few months. My daughter rescued a dog a bit over a year ago. The little guy had been in two homes prior and just didn’t find a good fit – it was rough for her at first too. He had behavioral issues that were problematic. But she was fortunate to be in a position where she could spend a lot of time and energy working with the little guy and now he is very well adjusted. I am sure her dog would tell Ashe that it was worth a few false starts to end up where he was meant to be:)

    • 22

      Thank you for your kind words, Joan – it means a lot. That makes me happy to hear that your daughter was able to make her situation work, especially after some false starts – gives me hope that Ashe will be just fine where she ends up next, and hopefully all the training we did with her will only help her in the future. <3

  9. 23

    Hi Anne, you’re doing great! Thanks for sharing the journey with us. I wanted to tell you not to worry about the Ashe situation so much. My sister had a similar thing happen with a cat right before her first baby – aggressive and even attacking her. They tried everything but realized her baby and family’s safety was top priority. It all worked out just fine! Hang in there, 🤗

  10. 25

    I’m only 11 weeks along but my husband’s aunt is a naturopathic doctor. She focuses a lot on supplements that have actually been tested appropriately. She said Jarro-dophilus probiotic (refrigerated kind) is the best. It’s pricey but I started taking it at 8 weeks and my super intense and uncomfortable bloating and constipation basically went away. I went on a work trip and didn’t bring it (they have a shelf stable version too just thought I’d be fine). Horrible bloating came right back. Truly amazing stuff, highly recommend it.

  11. 29

    I’m so sorry to hear about your situation with Ashe! Hopefully when she’s back next week you’ll notice a difference. If not, just wanted to say thanks for being such a great pet parent and really trying to solve the issues rather than giving her back without a second thought. She’s so lucky to have you and if it doesn’t work out for some reason, I hope you’re able to find peace of mind knowing that you tried everything and you gave her such a great start to life! Keeping you guys in my thoughts and hope your digestive troubles resolve as well!

  12. 31

    I’m sure you’ve already heard about it, but if not, The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding is a great book! Not to read cover to cover, but it has different sections you can read at different times and it is an excellent reference book if there are any problems. I ended up extended nursing all of my kids, which I had certainly not planned before they were born. I was very committed to nursing, and once we were settled into a nursing relationship, it was so much easier than if they had been formula-fed!

  13. 34

    Oh my gosh the closet is so neat! I could never post a pic. The clothes are absolutely adorable. She will be the best dressed baby

  14. 35

    Wow that’s a bit late for birth/baby classes. Our OBGYN recommended completing by 30 weeks just to be safe. And I ended up in labor at 33 weeks (while uncommon, early term labor happens) so I was glad we prepped as much as we did. Good luck and hope things keep going smooth!

    • 36

      Yeah, we have been so distracted by the dog situation we haven’t really been as organized as we should have been – oh well! If we miss one, we miss one, but hopefully it will work out to go to the remaining ones! The last one is at 36 weeks – we’ll see! It’s a hard balance between going late enough to have everything fresh, and going so late you might miss it, ha!

  15. 37

    That’s so sad about Ashe! Hopefully she will have made great progress so you don’t have to make that decision! Kudos to you though for knowing your limits and trying to find the best situation for Ashe. Our dog is an absolute sweet heart and very submissive but she randomly snapped at our daughter one day (didn’t come close to biting her). Emma was playing by her while she was laying down so I couldn’t see what happened but we assume Emma did something that hurt Margaret. We said right then if something like that (even a growl) happened again, we’d have to send her to my parents to live. I about cried just talking about it. Luckily, it hasn’t happened again. I think it was just a weird fluke/off day for our dog.

    Are you planning to use cloth or disposable diapers?

    • 38

      Oh gosh, I’m so sorry to hear that Laura – I hope it never happens again! I’m going to use disposable diapers, but I want to get the more eco/organic variations (going to try Honest Co and see how she does with those). I thought about cloth diapering but to be honest I just don’t want to do 15 loads of laundry per day, and she’ll be in daycare on the earlier side, and I know a lot of childcare providers won’t deal with cloth diapers anyway.

  16. 39

    I am a big fan of probiotics and my midwife recommended one with L Rhamnosus for vaginal bacteria benefits. Genestra do one called HMF Neuro which I feel like also helped with my anxiety a bit. I ended up having a c-section (unplanned, baby got stuck), but the impact on my stomach and mood was well worth it.

  17. 41

    Omgsh all the onesies hanging in the closet are the cutest things ever! All of ours are stuffed into drawers, but after seeing this I think I’m gonna need to get some tiny little clothes hangers for the closet :)

    • 42

      Right?! We have all the tops and bottoms in the dresser, but the onesies are so cute hanging up I can hardly stand it! Makes me happy every time I look in there <3

    • 43

      ALSO – you can really easily see the sizes when they are hanging – just look and see which feet are shorter or longer!

  18. 44

    Hi Anne,
    I went through a similar situation with a rescue dog a few years ago. He was very territorial and aggressive towards strangers and dogs. We worked with a trainer for almost a year. Unfortunately, He at one point became aggressive towards me and I was bitten. We had to make the tough decision to bring him back to the shelter for them to re-home him. While it broke our hearts and we cried and cried we knew it was best for us and our friends and family. The shelter will be able to help Ashe and get what she needs :) I know it’s tough but it will get better. Ps- we adopted another dog eventually and she is the sweetest pup ever!

  19. 46

    That video is cray!! I feel a bit embarrassed as a biologist and former human anatomy and physiology teacher that I didn’t realize the organs were moving so much and getting so squished! Great visualization!

  20. 48

    I love your long post as it also reminds us just how amazing women’s bodies are, as well as confusing.

    Forgot to mention for Ashe to try putting her on no poultry (chicken turkey and duck) for food and treats as many dogs aren’t allergic and it create a behavior issues. IT’s tricky because they hide in a lot of place (once found chicken fat in salmon treats).

  21. 49

    I had the diarrhea issue with all 3 of my pregnancies, nothing I tried helped. I never understood all my friends who had the opposite problem, haha!!

    I’m so sorry about all the dog issues. It’s SO hard, but sometimes you have to make those hard decisions that will be best for all involved. We re-homed our cat after we brought our 2nd daughter home, He had started pooping everywhere but his litterbox and was starting to get a little aggressive. I felt horrible as we had had him before we had kids. He was my first baby. I knew it was the right decision, but it still sucked. Saying some prayers for you guys!

  22. 51

    I love seeing all of the tiny clothes :) My son is one and already, the newborn clothes look SO tiny to me when I see them in the store, it’s hard to believe he was that small!

  23. 53

    That closet of tiny clothes AHHHHH! OMG I’m so so excited for you :)
    I’m so so sorry about Ashe, Anne, that’s heartbreaking :( I wish you all of the luck in the world and that Ashe will be a transformed dog, and if not, just remember that she had some phenomenal childhood memories that she will never forget, and that the shelter will most likely be very careful about who she ends up with. You’re going to be doing the right thing regardless, and I know it will all turn out okay <3

  24. 55

    That sucks that your nausea is coming back! You have been unlucky in that regard during this pregnancy. I”ve been fortunate as I have not had much nausea and only threw up once. It’s interesting how different each pregnancy is!! I hope you can figure out a solution for your digestive issues. I definitely have the opposite problem and am still SO constipated. :( TMI, I know, but it seems like most conversations about pregnancy move into the TMI territory!

    I hope you guys can make a decision about Ashe that is best for you guys, the baby, and her. I can see how this is especially hard given all the pregnancy hormones and how much more easily upsettable we are!

  25. 57

    So glad you enjoyed Stork! Those classes were such a great find during my pregnancy. Thanks fo the referral, too – I got a nice Starbucks card! :) Best wishes for a smooth, happy last few weeks – and of course, for all of the weeks and months and years to come!

    • 58

      Awesome, I gave them your email so you’d get a referral treat! :) Thank you again for the rec… we are going for our class there in a week or so!

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