Friday, July 14, 2017

Week by Week: Week 20

We're at the designated halfway point! Tomorrow is our big ultrasound appointment, and we couldn't be more excited. The Week by Week post is happening today because tomorrow, our official halfway point, will be a recap of where we've been so far. AND it will, hopefully, include some ultrasound pictures! Yay! And now, on to the good stuff.

Our Baby:
  • Is as long as a banana now because the baby will be measured from head-to-foot from from here on out rather than head-to-rump. 
  • For example, the pregnancy website, The Bump, says our baby measures 6.5 inches long this week. Then, next week, our baby starts measuring at 10.5 inches long. YIKES. 
  • Is crossing over the 10 ounces mark this week. 
  • Is now swallowing LOTS of amniotic fluid. We'll try not to think about the fact that baby pees into this fluid as well . . .
  • Is now, speaking of bodily functions, producing meconium! That's the dark and sticky substance that constitutes baby's very first "poop." 
  • Has a strong enough heartbeat now that it can be heard with a stethoscope instead of a doppler.
  • Is still a he/she to us for the next 24 hours. Tomorrow morning that will change--although it won't change in the language used here, sorry!
I (traditionally):
  • Have a uterus that is level with my belly button. 
  • Have gained an average of 8 to 10 pounds up to this point. 
  • Can expect to gain 1/2 a pound every week from now on. 
  • Have noticed weird changes, which could be any number of different conditions, with my skin. 
  • Have started noticing my fingers and feet starting to swell. 
  • Have good ol' heartburn. 
  • Have those lovely leg cramps and hip pains. 
  • Will continue to have more and more vaginal discharge until birth. 
  • Have high energy--and a high libido. 
  • Have started to experience shortness of breath as my growing uterus starts pushing against my lungs. 
  • Have started thinking about my birth plan, which is my ideal goal for my birth experience. 
I (actually): 
  • Am on track for weight gain now. I did quite a bit of catch up this last month, so I'm hoping the rate of weight gain levels out for the rest of pregnancy. I don't fancy gaining 30 more pounds, nor is that what my midwife recommends for me!
  • Don't have any weird skin things right now, thankfully. I do have that line running from my belly button downward (called the linea nigra), but that's something I was expecting anyway. 
  • Live in flip flops or no shoes at all during the summer, so I'm not actually sure what my feet are and aren't doing, but I know my fingers are starting to swell. Is it crazy that I planned ahead for swelling fingers when I said yes to Levi's proposal? The ring was about half a size too big, but I knew I wanted to be able to wear it while super pregnant, soooo....... I just got a wedding band in the correct size, didn't have them attached together, and keep it in front of the engagement ring so it doesn't slide around. The engagement ring fits now. 
  • Do have some heartburn, but it's not too bad. It's only bad if I lay down or recline a little bit after a meal. 
  • Don't have leg cramps, but boy, are those hip pains annoying. I was at my max by about 4:00 this morning, and no amount of shifting would help me fall back asleep. I finally rolled onto my back because that discomfort was more bearable than the hip pain. 
  • Am still not going to talk to the internet about my daily vaginal discharge. 
  • Am curious about this phrase "high energy." I mean, I still get lots of things done each day, but I still love naps. I took a four-hour nap on Saturday, and it was glorious. And if I'm not going to tell the internet about my vaginal discharge, I'm definitely not going to tell the internet about what's going down between our sheets!
  •  Have always struggled with some shortness of breath (I mostly grew out of childhood asthma), so I know how to handle it when it happens--which is does. I'm thinking it might be because I have an incredibly short torso and terrible posture, so any bending I do smooshes up my lungs. With a baby in there, it's much more pronounced. My remedy is the same as it has always been--elongate and stretch out the torso as much as possible. Standing up straight is an excellent thing.
  • Have birth plan ideas floating around in my head. 
The Second Time Around

  • Have gained about 5-6 pounds at this point, which is right in line with what my projected weight gain should be this time. 
  • I don't have a linea nigra this time. Weird. But I DO have some new skin tags in unfortunate places. So that's fun. 
  • No swelling in hands or feet at the moment. Everything is currently normal. Huzzah!
  • No heartburn yet either! Man, I really have it easy this time, don't I? 
  • I have had zero hip pain until JUST today. It finally started on my left side, and no matter how I sit or stand or lay it's always with me. It's not unbearable, but definitely my first actual discomfort in the second trimester. 
  • Nope. No discharge talk. Ever. 
  • I have plenty of energy. I do take a nap a couple times a week, but only if I really can't manage to get up off the couch once Junior is down for his nap. 
  • Definitely short of breath. I have noticed my heart rate is faster than normal, and I don't know how much of it is the pregnancy and how much is my weight (which, duh, is part of pregnancy, but isn't ALL due to pregnancy). 
  • Have my original birth plan on hand, but don't stress about it because I've discovered the secret to your ideal birth: choose a provider whose ideals and practices line up with what you desire. My new midwife here in Kansas is someone in whom I have absolute trust, and I actually can't wait for labor. I'm excited to work together with her to bring this little girl into the world!
Thoughts on this week:

Clothes are becoming more and more of an issue now that I'm steadily gaining weight. I wish it was just my stomach growing, but it really is all of me. I'm sure my stomach is steadily growing, but it's harder to tell since the rest of me is steadily expanding with it. I've become one of those women who takes her bra off halfway through the day now because it's just SO DARN UNCOMFORTABLE. Also, the pants come off as soon as I'm at home. It might be time to invest in a few new bras because it's PAINFULLY clear that my band size is no longer a 34. It might also be time to buy some newer, bigger, prettier underwear. Then it might be a pretty sight for Levi when the pants come off instead of the too-tight, strings-hanging-down, raggedy sight he currently sees. 

While I haven't written down my birth plan, I've got plenty of ideas. I will likely share them in a separate post in a few months, but you've probably guessed a lot of things about it based on some of the other things I've shared here. 

That baby is really moving now! I feel him/her multiple times a day, but especially at night. And the little kicks are stronger every day. Two nights ago that precious babe kicked me so hard I was SURE I felt it on the outside. I have yet to feel anything that strong again, but I'm hopeful that we're almost at the point Levi can feel his baby moving. 

Freak-Out Moments:

None this week. Phew!

Thoughts the Second Time Around: 

I have felt so good this time! Our ultrasound was such a relief. Seeing that we were having a little girl and that everything about her looks ok so far was wonderful. I am so grateful for this little life, and I'm counting down the days until I get to meet her in person.

Oh, did I mention I'm having a girl? Yay!


Tomorrow is the big day. I can't wait to share an image or two with y'all!

Keep it real, 

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