Sharing a little life and second trimester update. From symptoms and anxieties to favorite products and food cravings.
(bump in the kitchen remodel)
Hello! Just popping in today with a life and pregnancy update. The second trimester flew by as opposed to the first which seemed to never end. We also moved when I was 25 weeks so that made things a lot more interesting and helped pass the time, ha!
We had been looking to move for about 18 months and it finally all fell into place. Moving during a global pandemic at 25 weeks pregnant is not ideal, but is there really even a good time to move? Now that we are moved I’m happy that we decided to do it now because trying to move in the future with a tiny human in tow sounds even more daunting.
It was a local move from Alexandria to Great Falls, VA. Our main reasons for moving were a backyard for Layla (we moved from a townhouse), a better school district for baby (when he’s old enough to go to school) and an easier commute for Walter (if he even actually goes back in to the office). Oh and in case you were feeling bad that I’m not getting anything out of the move (ha!)… I’m got a major kitchen upgrade! We are currently remodeling the kitchen, I can’t wait to share it with you guys when it’s all done and we are actually settled in!
I feel very lucky to have been relatively symptom free throughout the second trimester. I know everyone says the second trimester is easy and I really found that to be true! I’m sleeping much better and feel much more energized.
Heartburn – My only complaint is pesky heartburn. It doesn’t seem to have a rhyme or a reason for when it hits, but I have been dealing with it at least 5 days a week since early in the second trimester and it’s not showing any signs of going away. Talking 2 of these chewable Tums helps for temporary relief. I recently learned that eating green apples can also help. It seems counterintuitive because they are so tart and acidic, but I guess they do something to balance out or calm down your stomach acid. Luckily I’m a big fan of green apples (I know they are too sour for some) so I have starting eating one before bed and so far it has really been helping to give me some nighttime heartburn relief!
Lots of Baby Kicks – The best pregnancy “symptom”. I started feeling flutters around 13 weeks and real kicks around 16. Since around 20 weeks the kicking has been pretty consistent and it’s my favorite thing about pregnancy by far!
Braxton Hicks Contractions – These started earlier than I expected, around 18-20 weeks. I don’t have them every day, but I am definitely noticing them a few times a week!
Overall the second trimester has been much improved from a food perspective than the first. I don’t have any nausea and there aren’t any foods that make me gag. I have felt a shift in my appetite though, I’m much hungrier during the day and a lot less hungry at night. Some nights I can’t even stomach the idea of dinner and opt for a bowl of cereal, fruit or ice cream instead.
Some of my most frequent food cravings are the following:
BLTs – I talked about this craving last week in my BLT Panzanella recipe post. They have been a major part of my pregnancy diet 🙂
Watermelon – Sounds good at any time of day, I’m going through 1-2 a week.
Grapes – red or green, but they must be perfectly crunchy (idk if crunchy is the right word, but you know what I mean… please no mushy grapes!)
Peanut M&Ms – I’m pretty sure they are a major contributor to my heartburn (why does chocolate have to cause heartburn, it’s totally unfair!), but I saw someone eating them on TV and the next day I picked up a family size bag at the grocery store. Why are they so good!?
Chocolate Covered Gummy Bears – So far I have not been able to get my hands on any, but chocolate covered gummy bears sound so good to me all the time!
My exercise routine has mostly stayed the same from the first trimester though I’ve slowed down some since we moved. I took about 2 weeks off from my virtual body pump classes during the week we were packing and the week we were moving and it’s been hard to get back into it. I’m trying to get 2 strength training sessions in per week and I would really like to continue that as long as I can.
I’m still walking/hiking about 3-4 miles about 5 days a week. I always feel better on the days I get a good walk in!
FAVORITE SECOND TRIMESTER PRODUCTS
Burt’s Bees Mama Body Butter – I’m still using this body butter on my belly and pretty much all over my body when I get out of the shower. I haven’t had any issues with dry or ichy skin and it seems to keep me moisturized.
Amazon High Waisted Bike Shorts – I’ve been basically living in athletic wear this whole pregnancy (thank you global pandemic), when we hit summer I realized I was going to need some new shorts. I tried out a few brands from Amazon and these are my favorite by far. They are really soft, stretchy and comfortable. They are not maternity, I ordered one size up from my normal size and they fit great!
Belly Band – I started wearing this belly band around 24 weeks for extra support when I go for walks and when I am working for long stretches in the kitchen on my feet. It is comfortable, not too hot and definitely provides the support I need.
Snoogle Pregnancy Pillow – I know people who swear by this pillow, but I’m not completely sold. I do use it sometimes for support while sleeping, but I find it a little too large and cumbersome, I often forgo it in favor of a regular pillow between my legs. I’m hoping it will get more use during the third trimester!
HOW I’M FEELING MENTALLY
Like most people, I have adapted to the fact that we are going to be living in this new, weird world for quite a while. I always assumed I would join a new mom’s group where I would meet other, local women in the same life stage as me. It’s a bummer that I can’t (at least not in person), but it just is what it is.
In the beginning it was really upsetting that Walter could not come with me to my doctors appointments. I still had a lot of anxiety in the beginning given our history of loss, so I was really thankful that he was able to come to the early ultrasounds at the fertility clinic. Right around 8 weeks is when things started shutting down, so he hasn’t been able to come to any appointments since I “graduated” to the OB. What I have found is that OB appointments are generally really quick, and aside from the major perk of being able to listen to the baby’s heartbeat the appointments are boring (in the best way!) when you are having a normal pregnancy, so not having him there is really not that big of a deal. I will say it really sucked that he wasn’t allowed to come to our 20-week anatomy scan. That was a really fun appointment and the fact that he was deprived of getting to experience that ultrasound is a really sad reality of the pandemic.
But this is the world we are living in right now and whenever I feel down about how things are I remember that EVERY, SINGLE PERSON is making sacrifices right now, no one is living the 2020 they had imagined.
Infertility and Anxiety/Body Image
As opposed to the first trimester where I was anxious the entire time about the possibility of miscarriage, the second has been much improved. When you go through infertility and loss I don’t think you will fully let yourself believe you are going to have a baby until he/she is in crying in your arms. I’ve still had many moments of unrest throughout the second trimester, but it is no longer constant. I was lucky that I was able to start feeling the baby kick early in the second trimester which does a lot to ease my mind.
Around 22/23 weeks I started feeling really scared that I was going to go into labor early. Since I have never been pregnant before I don’t really know how it’s supposed to feel, but to me it felt (and still feels) like he is sitting really low. Because of this, I felt like he could just fall out at any time (I know a lot of you mom’s out there are probably laughing to yourselves because wouldn’t it be wonderful if labor was that easy and painless that the baby just fell out, haha… Since I’ve had it in my head all this time that he is going to come early, I’ll probably go to 42 weeks, because that’s just how these things go, ha!) But, in all seriousness, I was really scared during the few weeks leading up to 24 weeks. I think it’s because the 24 week viability target is talked about a lot so I viewed it as a big hurdle. Clearly he’s still in there and thankfully my fear of early labor has mostly subsided.
I feel lucky that I’m having a relatively easy pregnancy. It was so hard to get here, but now that we are I feel like one of the lucky ones that actually enjoys being pregnant. I am in awe everyday of what my body is able to do – there is an actual baby growing inside of me and that just feels like magic!
It’s hard to love your body when you are going through infertility, you feel like it’s literally working against you and not doing the things it was meant to despite all your best efforts. Pregnancy on the other hand is the direct opposite, your body is doing all of these amazing things and providing for another growing life inside of you and you don’t have to tell it, or ask it or beg it to do anything, it just knows what to do and that is incredible. People say you never get over infertility and I believe that to be true, but this pregnancy is definitely helping me heal.
So about a million words later… sitting here at almost 29 weeks pregnant I fell so incredibly grateful to be in the 3rd trimester. I can’t believe we will finally be meeting our baby in less than 3 months!
We start our virtual childbirth class tonight, things are getting real!