It’s 1:37 in the morning and I should be asleep. In fact, I should be so exhausted that there is no way I could physically sit up, let alone type. I might realise this is the case when I actually read this back in a more awake state. Yet, I’ve reached that funny stage that can happen in the third trimester. The stage where you probably need all the rest you can get but your brain and body is saying: “Not happening, Mama. We need to prepare you for what’s to come”. I guess if it’s your first there is a sort of sense to this. You’ll experience exhaustion like never before when your newborn wakes 17 times a night needing you for whatever reason. When you already have children it just seems like a bit of a cruel joke!
Here I am being at what feels like my most productive all day … or is that night? Plus it’s not like I haven’t done anything today. If you count redecorating a room, cleaning half the house, going shopping, working, picking up Caspian, cooking and putting the washing away. No, combine the insane insomnia of the third trimester with nesting and it feels a bit like you are on drugs (not that I have actually ever tried this so it’s a simple assumption). I’ve only ever been high on life… and Champagne if that counts? Yet I’m sitting here thinking whether now is a good time to deep clean the kitchen, wash all the baby clothes and organise Caspian’s toys (as they are taking over the living room yet again). In reality, I should be asleep. I should rest.
THANK YOU PREGNANCY HORMONES
Pregnancy insomnia. They’ve named it as it is a thing. It hits 75% of pregnant women the hardest in the third trimester although it’s not exclusive to the last three months. I did have a bit of it in my first trimester but put this down to a mixture of fear (having experienced a miscarriage at 12 weeks in my last pregnancy almost two years ago) and severe morning sickness. Although the latter was nothing compared to our future queen so don’t feel like I can complain too much. It does seem like hormones are the biggest villain when it comes to keeping you awake at ridiculous hours. Followed by those frequent trips to the toilet. Crazy dreams. If I could remember mine I’m sure there is a best seller in the making as they are certainly out there.
OTHER REASONS YOU MIGHT BE AWAKE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT
It’s natural to feel anxious and at the same time excited about the upcoming event and addition to your family. If it’s your first you might imagine how it will affect your life in general, your relationship dynamic, your body and your career. It’s easy for your mind to go into overdrive.
There is also the discomfort of the third trimester. Finding a way to actually lie relaxed in bed with the increase in blood, a heavy bump and often leg cramps. I’ve been getting the latter much worse this time around. Then there is the snoring and I wish I could blame Daddy Long Legs but I’m sure if you recorded us I’m the worst at the moment.
If you have children already then there are their wake ups. Which never coincide with yours! Or they might still want a snuggle. Caspian loves coming into our bed at 3 am which is the time that I then can’t go back to sleep. It’s lovely with a cuddle but to be honest I’m so hot at the moment that I’m mostly dreaming of a cool King Size ALL to myself.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO COMBAT PREGNANCY INSOMNIA
I definitely think there is something to be said for just getting up and doing something. Hence why I’m sitting here in the darkness writing about the problem. Otherwise, you often end up twisting and turning fretting about all the things that need doing only to wake up a couple of hours later so exhausted you have no actual energy to take on those tasks.
Another big help for me has been my pregnancy pillow. I had one when I was expecting Caspian and it did help although wasn’t anything special. This time I’ve been sent the most amazing bedmate and the bbhugme (AD/gifted) is a true lifesaver as it adapts to your changing body and gives you support throughout your pregnancy. I’ll probably end up sleeping with it for years to come. Not to mention it transforms into a pod for baby.
Do more exercise including yoga, meditation and stretching. I had envisioned this pregnancy full of healthy food, calmness and keeping fit. Luckily I craved a lot a fruit otherwise I’m not sure the first part would have happened. Life has well and truly gotten in the way of the calmness. That’s for another post…. maybe tomorrow night, right? Plus my exercise routine currently exists of me chasing after Caspian on the school run. His long legs certainly beat my waddle.