Thursday, September 5, 2013

Reflections From the First Trimester

Now that I'm solidly into my second trimester and carving out more time for writing again, I wanted to share the little bits and pieces that I wrote during the first weeks of my pregnancy. 
There are some references to bodily functions and physical symptoms of pregnancy (nausea, urination, etc.) so if you're particularly squeamish, consider yourself fairly warned!



Weeks 5 & 6


This pregnancy has already felt very different from my first. Dizziness, thirst, and fatigue were my first symptoms this time, while tingling breasts and a general sense of something feeling "off" were my first symptoms with Daniel. The nausea began almost immediately with my first pregnancy, while this time it has ramped up more slowly, with constant dizziness being my main complaint. (Last time it was as if the nausea was in my stomach, but this time it's almost as if it lives in my inner ear.)

I took three pregnancy tests this time (on different days)
as opposed to the one I took with my first pregnancy.
After taking longer to conceive, I think I was in disbelief!

I'm finding the fatigue this time to be incredibly overwhelming. I've started turning in for bed for the night as soon as Jaymz gets home from work. Even with that and a midday nap, I feel so sluggish and exhausted all the time. Growing people is hard work!


Week 7 


I've already lost 7 pounds, which is almost twice the amount of weight I lost in my whole first trimester last time. I'm pretty much sustaining myself on tea, mints, and body fat. I guess I'm kind of grateful to my sluggish thyroid for packing on a few extra pounds for me to burn through during this time.


Week 8 


I miss my mom.

I began eating grains again this week after a couple months off: quinoa, rice, and oats. My nausea has improved a bit with the addition of these grains, so I'm thinking my body really needs them right now.


Week 9 


It's too hot. Blah.


Week 10


I had an appointment to check for a heartbeat which got canceled at the last minute (due to a birth) and rescheduled for later this week. I guess I have to wait a little longer! We've already tried once to hear the heartbeat with the doppler since we heard it very early on with my pregnancy with Daniel. I had hoped for a similar experience this time, but that's alright.

***

The second heartbeat check was unsuccessful. My midwife suspects it's because my uterus is retroverted (it has been tilted back on one side since Daniel was born; prior to that, it was tilted forward). She offered to order an ultrasound if I felt like I wanted one, but I'm content to wait it out. We'll just try again next week!


Week 11 


OK, I must've missed reading the weekly State of the Fetus update last week, because this week I'm reading that my belly dweller is the size of a lime... and that's pretty much blowing my mind. I have felt a lot more pressure/pushing/stretching sensations in my uterus in the past couple of weeks, and I noticed last night when I laid down for bed that my uterus was definitely much larger than the last time I checked in. There's a nice hard lump over to the right, which could either be a fetus or an ovarian cyst—who knows!

Today at nap time, I noticed how out of control my trips to the bathroom have become. Case in point: Daniel used the potty before nap, and then I had a turn. Then I brushed his teeth (~5 minutes total, including copious breaks for chatting) and asked him to go get comfy in his bed while I put his toothbrush away. I had to pee again. I went in to his room, tucked him in, and rocked in the rocking chair while he fell asleep (~12 minutes). I needed to pee again. Then I went into my room and chatted with Jaymz while I ate a little lunch before lying down to take a nap (~15 minutes). I made another trip to the toilet (that makes 4 pees in about 35 minutes). I finally was able to settle down and fall asleep. Thirty minutes later, I get up to pee; come back to bed, go back to sleep. Another 35 minutes, and I force myself to get up because I can't ignore my bladder any longer. More pee. So, we're talking 6 trips to the bathroom in less than two hours. Wow.

I'm about ready for the kid to get big enough to encourage my uterus up out of the pelvic bowl to give my bladder a bit of a break!

***

The day after we heard the heartbeat,
complete with adorable photo bomber.
11 weeks + 4 days: We heard a strong heartbeat with the doppler at my midwives' office today! Baby seems to have implanted rather high up, which could explain the extra pressure I've been feeling. This is all starting to feel even more real now—here we go!


Week 12


I've been thinking a lot about nutrition lately, specifically how strange it is that during the most vital weeks of development for a fetus, its mother's ability to nourish herself adequately is drastically reduced. This seems pretty backwards to me, to be honest. Before I was pregnant, I had no (or very few) food aversions, I did not vomit regularly, and I was able to eat a wide variety of foods. Now, I'm quite limited in what appeals to me, and furthermore, I'm too tired to cook anyway. We have an entire fridge drawer full of squash from the garden, and I'm embarrassed to admit that I haven't eaten one bite of zucchini yet this season. What's worse is that the whole family's nutrition has taken a hit due to pregnancy: I'm too tired to cook, so we end up having take-out. Sigh. I know this stage will pass, but right now I'm getting pretty tired of it.


Week 13 


I'm starting to feel better this week! I was still very nauseated with Daniel through about 18 weeks, so I'm excited that this symptom seems to be easing sooner on this time. Evenings are still the hardest for me, but I'm not having to eat quite as frequently and my excessive thirst (and resulting urine) isn't quite so out of control. I'm also starting to have a little more energy, which is encouraging. I had started to fear that I would be in bed for the remainder of this pregnancy! I think the progesterone supplements I've been using this time around have really affected the intensity of my fatigue. Last week, I started weaning off of the progesterone, and I'm already noticing a difference.


Week 14 


I'm calling it: I feel movement! This is 3-4 weeks earlier than I felt it with Daniel, but I know that with my pregnancy with him I had an anterior placenta (where the placenta attaches to the front, or belly side, of the uterus) which can dull feelings of movement and kicking.

Feeling little thumps and flutters (which turn into big stretches, elbows to the ribs, and hiccups on the bladder) is one of my favorite parts of pregnancy. The beginning of this stage also means that I'm moving into the middle (most physically comfortable) part of the pregnancy. Yay!

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