Monday, October 31, 2022

October 2022 Shopping Reflections

Well my third trimester bump is so large and unwieldy now, and my pregnancy-related physical discomfort so substantial, that I'm definitely no longer able to expend any mental energy on trying to wear cute clothes! Almost all my fashion-related purchases this month are maternity wear, to get ready for fall and early winter temperatures in NYC. 

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I was originally thinking I might be able to wear my usual fall/winter uniform of dresses and tights (and sweaters, particularly the J.Crew Juliette sweater blazers) once the weather cooled down during my third trimester. But after ordering a single pair of maternity tights (from Spanx) to try on, I quickly realized that just wasn't going to work. It takes so much effort to get into a pair of tights now - even putting on socks can leave me winded these days, and significantly more contortions are required to get a pair of tights on fully - that I could only ever manage it for special occasions. It's simply not happening for everyday wear. Thus, I'll be in maternity pants or leggings for the remaining six to seven weeks of my pregnancy. 

Fashion - (TOTAL: $372.95) 

  • Kizik Vegas Sneaker, white - $140.45* - I got these solely because of Kizik's primary gimmick, that their sneakers are "hands-free", and slip right on. I'm happy to report these shoes work as promised: I do need to angle my foot in a little since I keep them fully tied and the opening for my foot isn't that large, but it's easy enough to do, even in my heavily pregnant state. These took a little time to break in the toe box and ankle, my feet got a bit sore after several hours out and about on the first day of wear. But that's typical enough and I didn't have any blisters or anything. I've been wearing my Kiziks almost every day since receiving them in early October, and they seem to be holding up reasonably well so far. 
  • Pact Maternity Airy Long-Sleeve Tee, storm - $40.00 - I bought four maternity tees from Pact once I knew I'd be in pants and leggings for most of my third trimester, and I'm quite satisfied with the quality. (All my non-maternity tees are too short to accommodate my third trimester bump.) The cotton fabric feels nice, though is slightly on the thin side (but the white tee is not sheer, so there's no real problem there). I don't layer sweaters over these for now because it's still somewhat warm. As with many other maternity wear lines, Pact recommends taking your size from before pregnancy - for me, a M - though I found these tees ran a noticeable amount larger than that. This is probably the first maternity wear brand I've tried that I'd describe that way because I grew so much in the bust and bump early on that I'd have done better sizing up in many brands by the middle of my second trimester. One additional issue is that my pre-pregnancy bust measurement puts me solidly in a M on Pact's sizing chart, while my waist and hip measurement belong in a S. 
  • Pact Maternity Airy Long-Sleeve Tee, mink gray - $40.00 - While all these Pact maternity tees are good quality, I don't love many of the color choices in their maternity line. This "mink grey" seems awkwardly in between olive green and light grey, so it's not my favorite as far as neutral shades go. Though I needed a lot of tees, so I still ordered this, and it was at least more neutral than some of the other remaining shades. 
  • Pact Maternity Slub Slouchy Tee, white - $40.00 - The neckline on these is a bit wide, so the effect can be a bit pajama-like. But I personally still prefer a slouchy, loose maternity tee over a ruched one. Just my nitpicky style preference... 
  • Pact Maternity Slub Slouchy Tee, ore - $40.00 - This is another somewhat odd neutral from Pact. The storm color the long-sleeve tee comes in is truer dark gray. Meanwhile, this ore shade is somewhere between slate blue and dark gray, though that works for my wardrobe a bit better than the more olive green mink gray. 
  • J.Crew Factory Maternity Jamie Pant, black - $44.50 - These have a comfortable soft stretch, though the fabric is fairly thin. I ordered two sizes - 6 and 8 -  to try on. From that, I don't think it makes the biggest difference with these pants to size up from your pre-pregnancy size or not, as the two sizes felt very similar. I ultimately kept the larger one because I figured it'd leave more room for the continued growth of my third trimester bump. 
  • Spanx Maternity Tights, black - $28.00 - (also here) I can't really give much of a review for these because I tried them on just once at home and quickly realized I just wasn't going to be able to regularly put on tights in my third trimester. My belly is just too in the way! As suggested, I ordered my pre-pregnancy size on their size chart and that seemed correct for my early third trimester bump. (Though as with many other brands that suggest taking your pre-pregnancy size in the maternity line, I think that by the end of pregnancy I'll be close to or actually in need of sizing up from that recommendation.)  
*Indicates that price includes sales tax

Nothing too exciting this month on the shopping front, and that will probably continue to be true for the rest of my pregnancy. There isn't even that much time left now, most likely around six or seven weeks, and that's such a daunting thought! Though I'm also feeling so big and unwieldy already that I'm totally kind of looking forward to it being over. (I was my mom's first baby and was born almost two weeks early with no complications or issues, so part of me is wondering if I might also deliver a bit early.) 

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Early Third Trimester

Pact Maternity Airy Long-Sleeve Tee: Finally ordered some maternity tops, and Pact's are pretty good.

Things have quieted down considerably for me at the office, just in time for my third trimester pregnancy symptoms to escalate! I have noticeably less energy now and am definitely much less physically comfortable, and I still have around seven weeks of pregnancy to go. I can't even imagine how much bigger this bump can get, and how much more unwieldy it will feel... 

Alas, given my current lack of physical and mental energy, including for blogging, I think I'll be a lot quieter here until after my mid-December due date. I think I'll check in intermittently with my monthly shopping reflections and pregnancy-related posts. Not much room in my brain for thinking and writing about anything else!

Gestational Diabetes 

Fortunately, my gestational diabetes ("GD") remains well-controlled without medication, or even any particularly onerous changes to my eating habits or the limited physical activity levels I'm currently able to sustain. I'd always gravitated to a somewhat lower-carbohydrate diet just due to my personal tastes and preferences, and I'd also generally craved sweet foods less during pregnancy than at other times, so I'm really not eating that differently from how I was before the diagnosis. 

The only real changes I've needed to make so far are: 

  • (1) Like many GD patients, I have significantly more trouble digesting carbohydrates without blood sugar spikes in the early morning than later in the day, so I do need to be careful about breakfast. Strangely enough, half a regular white flour English muffin works better for me than a similarly small slice of whole-wheat bread for breakfast, even if the two items have the same carb content. Milk also contains carbs - which I never needed to think about before my diagnosis - so morning lattes are not an especially good idea at present. (This isn't a big deal because I also seem to be back to my first-trimester issue where coffee just doesn't taste right anyway.) 
  • (2) Only a few foods I enjoy are probably too difficult to successfully work into my lunch and dinner diet at present. One of those is pizza, which is unfortunate. (I could probably have a small slice or two with some non-carbohydrate side dishes for lunch or dinner, but that doesn't quite fit our habits on days that K and I feel like ordering pizza. It's easier to just avoid pizza for the next few weeks rather than try to make it work with my GD.) 
And that's it, really, at least for now, which isn't too bad! I'm starting to notice some of my fasting blood sugar readings are now a little higher than in earlier weeks - though they're still a margin below the typical cutoff for an abnormal reading at that time - which is consistent with the experience of many GD patients around 32 to 36 weeks. Fingers crossed things don't escalate to the point of needing medication or insulin, because those things are more complicated to manage and would also make the pregnancy somewhat higher-risk. 

Physical Symptoms

Oh lordy, things have continued getting significantly more uncomfortable as I progress into the third trimester. It almost feels like each week unlocks new levels of previously unknown discomfort. These days, getting dressed and putting on pants and socks is a big chore that can sometimes leave me feeling a bit winded. It also feels like there's less room in my torso now that the baby has grown considerably, which accounts for both some mild shortness of breath at times and being less hungry or less able to eat larger meals. That also causes a bit of heartburn or reflux.

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Sleep is becoming difficult, since it's becoming impossible to get comfortable, even with my trusty pregnancy pillow. Whenever I try to adjust my position while laying down, my belly feels so heavy and unwieldy.

At the moment, my most severe third-trimester ache or pain is that I get especially sore in my ribs, always on the right side. (Our little bean tends to kick and move in that area more than any other, maybe that's a factor.) Earlier on, I didn't start feeling rib pain until late evening some days, but more recently it's starting in the mid-afternoon. A pregnancy support belt helps, but not as much as it used to. 

I'm now seeing my OB-GYN for routine appointments once every two weeks. With my specialist referral for GD, I also have a separate remote video visit with either a nurse or a MFM roughly once every two to three weeks. Everything still looks healthy and on track, which I'm very grateful for. Fingers crossed that everything continues to go smoothly for the remaining weeks of pregnancy!