The further along I get in this pregnancy, the more challenging everything becomes. It used to be that if I dropped something on the floor, I could easily bend over and pick it up. Not anymore. Now, even if I try to do my sumo squat, reaching the floor has become a mission impossible. I even need help at times getting my socks and shoes on! It's not just the giant protruding belly that limits my mobility, however. It's also the fact that Andy likes to wedge his little feet strategically under my ribs, making it all the harder to move around without feeling a painful jab or kick that leaves me flinching.
Don't get me wrong. I am extremely excited that we are this far along. And I love how active Andy has been. I love nothing more than to see my tummy rolling with activity as soon as my husband starts to read Andy a story, or watching Andy and his dad play "tag." But as much as I love to feel Andy moving around, it can be a little hard to enjoy when he's waking me up at 4am as he body-slams my insides! I've noticed he's already developed a bit of a routine with his activity. The times he seems to be most awake is between 9-11pm and 4-6am. For awhile, I was almost regularly being woken up around 4 or 5am from Andy wiggling around. And I've come to find that, when I am feeling hungry, Andy will wiggle all the more. So at 5am, when I feel Andy jumping around, usually it's because I am starting to get really hungry at that point. I've tried to ignore it and just wait until breakfast so I'm not eating too much. But that resulted in more demanding kicks that rocked my whole body! At 5:30am, I ate my yogurt of defeat.
For the past few nights, however, the biggest trouble I have been having is leg cramps. They happen from time to time, and usually I can stretch my leg while still lying down and the cramp will subside quickly. Not last night. Last night I had the worst charlie horse of my life! From the middle of a sound sleep, I was jolted awake from my calf muscle cramping up so severely that I couldn't even straighten my leg. Gritting my teeth and moaning with pain, I tried to stand up and force my leg straight. With much effort and shaking, my leg finally gave in and stretched out in relief. I flopped back on the bed in exhaustion. Before lying back down, I stretched my legs a few more times, had some water, and tried to go back to sleep. After an hour of wrestling with a stressed and restless mind (focusing entirely too much on Joey's up and coming birth/death day), I finally drifted back to sleep. About an hour later, my other leg seized up, causing me to fly out of bed once again. Needless to say, I am one tired and sore lady!
I've heard before that leg cramps become more common the bigger the baby gets, but last night was ridiculous! Tonight, I plan on drinking more water, having a banana or two for some potassium, and I'm going to take an Epsom salt bath before bed. I've also been stretching my legs and keeping my feet elevated today in hopes to relax the muscles a bit more. Perhaps it's time I start to slow things down a little. When I went for my walk today, my hips felt achy as my legs were on the verge of cramping up, my fingers started to swell in the cold air, and my tummy felt sore and stretchy. Not to mention my back is really starting to ache more and more as my belly pulls my low back into a curve. I've been trying to keep active throughout my pregnancy, going for daily walks and keeping on my feet for the majority of the day. But perhaps it's time I take it easy and cut back a little. My body seems to be yelling at me, and I don't think I can stand another night like last night! It was literally a wake-up call.