The Truth About Having a Third Child
I think my unborn third child is slightly neglected in comparison to my first and second born children.
At this stage of the third trimester, with just single digit weeks to countdown, I was all packed for the hospital - and possibly had re-packed once or twice. I had the nursery all set up to welcome them. I had every item of clothing laundered, ironed within an inch of its life and folded away in neat little rows. Both of them had a full wardrobe long before they were born.
I was even starting to build a small freezer stash of home cooked meals for those hazy post partum days. I was ready to meet my baby! Mentally, physically, emotionally. Ready. This time around I have some bits and bobs bought for the labour and hospital stay. They are still in their respective shopping bags in my bedroom. I'm not sure when, or even if, they will make it into an actual bag.
The "nursery", if you could call it that any more, is now known as the box room due to the fact it's chock-full of boxes of clothes, toys and books among other things. The thought of clearing it out and making it livable makes me feel more than slightly ill! Don't get me started on clothes for this child. My first two were winter babies, born 23 months apart, so I have all long sleeved vests, fleecy sleepsuits and umpteen snowsuits in newborn and 0-3 months sizes.
This baby has been bought 4 new sleepsuits and 3 hats which will go in my hospital bag - the mythical one mentioned above if it ever gets packed! As for home cooked freezer meals - don't make me laugh! I don't want to EAT food at the moment, I most definitely don't want to cook it! Let alone batch cook it!! So basically I am saying I am extremely unprepared, at least in the physical sense this time. I've adopted a kind of "Ah sure 'twill be grand!" attitude. I have another few weeks, or so I keep telling myself.
Speaking of the neglected third child, I have to reminisce about the amount of documentation my first two pregnancies got. I had almost daily bump pictures of my first pregnancy. It was in my every waking moment and all I could talk to anyone about. I had one of those pregnancy journals which I wrote in religiously. I was in the zone. On my second pregnancy I had weekly bump pictures, sometimes several in the same week. It wasn't documented as highly as my first but I made a decent attempt.
This time I have two bump pictures from the first 20 weeks. One of which I took of my pre-pregnancy belly about 3 days before finding out we were pregnant, as I just had a feeling and wanted a "before" shot! In fairness I've gotten slightly better since 20 weeks though. I remember to take one maybe once a fortnight, if I don't look too hideous.
In saying all of that I must point out that this pregnancy has been the easiest of the three. Perhaps I've learned better coping mechanisms. Perhaps my days are now so full I don't have time to focus on how fast or slow those 40 weeks are going. Perhaps my perception of pregnancy has changed over time after having two less than stellar pregnancies so I was expecting these 9 months to be horrendous. Anything less than horrendous is a win for me!
Perhaps its so much easier because this child will be my "easy" one - though judging by the amount of belly hopping going on here 24/7 I'm doubtful of that! Perhaps I was so physically, mentally and emotionally prepared for my first and second children to arrive because I was so ready for the pregnancy part to be over with. This time, having had an easier run of it, at least thus far, I have to be honest and say I'm enjoying not having to share my baby with anyone just yet. It's easier mind them while they are on the inside.
For the first time I think I will actually miss being pregnant and so I am living in the moment. No, I don't have clothes ready or bags packed or a food stash started. No, I don't have a bajillion bump pictures and a journal full of kick counts and pregnancy milestones.
I am enjoying this pregnancy in the here and now and though I may not have many mementos from this time to look back upon in years to come I will remember embracing this pregnancy more than either of my first two.