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Friday Update: Week 19

PhotobucketYikes, week 19! The days seem so long but the weeks are SO short! Where is all this time going, honestly? Sheesh we’ll be a family of four before I know it.

At 19 weeks, baby is about 6 inches long which is the height of this 24 oz. box of raisins! Mmmm, raisins. Mr. Handsome loves ’em.

What I don’t love, on the other hand, is this freaking annoying-as-all-get-out abdomen pain that I keep experiencing. It’s been going on since just before my last midwife visit, so since about week 15.

What I’m experiencing is a stabbing, sharp pain about an inch or two to the right of my belly button. It isn’t very deep, I would say no more than an inch below my skin, but it’s sharp and it hurts. Okay, it doesn’t hurt so much that I’m doubled over, immobile, crying, etc. but it is annoying and I don’t like it.

What’s also super dumb is that it comes and goes, sometimes it shows up at the same time every day (for about a week it was 4:15 on the nose), it waves in and out of more or less painful and it sticks around for sometimes an hour or two and then peaces out til the next day. WTF?

So I called the midwife a week or two ago. She asked a bunch of questions about my appendix (because I’m a rare one that has all the parts I came with, except my baby and wisdom teeth) but then determined that since I’m not in a super duper amount of pain that it probably isn’t appendicitis. (Well thank goodness because abdominal surgery right now would freak the f outta me.) She ruled out critical conditions and that was about it.

I called again after Kiddo1’s birthday party last weekend because it was getting pretty painful. We talked more about my symptoms. She believes I may be experiencing round ligament pain (however from my research on this subject I believe what I’m feeling is far too high in my abdomen to be my round ligaments). This pain is caused my ligaments and tendons in the uterus and pelvic area which are stretching out due to the growing baby.

This type of pain is completely normal, especially in second pregnancies (and third, fourth, etc). It’s also most common to feel this “stretching” in the second trimester. Finally, the pain can be triggered by lots of activity (hence its onset at the end of my work day or after activities such as a four-hour birthday party) and/or light dehydration (so time to really focus on getting more than 60 oz of water per day).

So when I feel the pain now, I’m trying to slow down a bit and take it easy, but grab the water bottle first and suck up some hydration while I lounge. Things have been a bit better the last couple days, but I’m really hoping this subsides soon. It’s just annoying and causes unnecessary worry!

Here are a few other things going on:

  • Total weight gain: 14 pounds. What. The. Hell. That’s three pounds this week alone (and five pounds in the last two weeks!). I blame this on Mr. Handsome because he brought home a whole lotta candy for Valentine’s Day and I am powerless against it.
  • Cravings: Freaking Valentine’s Day chocolate is the death of me this week. I can’t stay away!
  • Coolest symptom: Yes, there have been some definite, very light but definite, baby kicks. I’ve been teased for what, maybe a month now, by little flutters that I think, maybe, aren’t gas or other tummy rumbles but little waves of somersaults and baby tae-bo. But lately, in the evening when I’m quiet and still, I feel things. I hope they get stronger soon so I can stop going crazy with second-guessing myself!
  • Lamest symptom: Same ol’ problems as of late (lower back pain, stabbing abdomen pain/round ligament pain that comes and goes, headaches aren’t as frequent but still annoying, inconsistent but daily-ish bowel movements). These are more annoying than anything, they don’t get in the way. Honestly, I don’t really mind because at this point they’re all I’ve got to remind me that, yes, there’s a baby growing in there!
  • Exercise this week: The goal is 210 minutes per week (that’s an average of 30 minutes per day). I started a brief (5 minutes a day) arm routine to compliment all the yoga and bits of cardio I’m doing. I hope to have nice-looking arms by baby time! So total exercise this week was 215 minutes! All yoga except for arms and 30 minutes of vigorous soccer practice with Kiddo1 (soccer season is just around the corner!). I have got to get back to the elliptical but it made my back hurt so much last time I used it that I’m scared off. I must get over myself!

Now let’s check in with baby’s growth, courtesy

Your baby’s sensory development is exploding! His or her brain is designating specialized areas for smell, taste, hearing, vision, and touch. Some research suggests that your baby may be able to hear your voice now, so don’t be shy about reading aloud, talking to him or her, or singing a happy tune if the mood strikes you. Your baby weighs about 8 1/2 ounces and measures 6 inches, head to bottom – about the size of a large heirloom tomato. The arms and legs are in the right proportions to each other and the rest of the body now. Your baby’s kidneys continue to make urine and the hair on his or her scalp is sprouting. A waxy protective coating called the vernix caseosa is forming on the skin to prevent it from pickling in your amniotic fluid.

Hospital/Midwife Choice

Yesterday, Mr. Handsome and I finally had our first official appointment with the midwife group that we’ve chosen. It feels like we’re making some real progress now!

It’s taken us awhile to get here because we had a hard time finding the perfect place. We were all set to go with the ob/midwife office that I had been seeing for the last couple years. They seemed good enough – perfectly competent, at least. But the more we looked into the hospital they’re affiliated with, the less impressed I was. The hospital just didn’t have the amenities that we were looking for, specifically the waterbirth option (long story short about that choice: a few years ago we were talking to a friend who had a waterbirth and she described the most amazing experience. We knew that would be part of our plan if/when we were to have another baby).


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Regardless of the misgivings, we went ahead and had our first appointment at my fallback office. During that appointment, we learned that the only midwife in the practice is pregnant herself and would not be able to attend our birth. An OB would take over for her, but that’s not the path we want to take this time. We had an OB with our son, and it was a fine experience. We just want something different for this round. (Plus our decision is really validated by the stuff I read on the “My OB said what?!” blog – link in the blog roll at right.) Having a pregnant midwife gave us the excuse we needed to start shopping.

I went on a quick interview with one of the midwives at the university hospital (Mr. Handsome couldn’t go and he was pretty bummed – he really digs this stuff!). I was fairly certain that this was the place for us, so I talked about it with Mr. Handsome and we went over all the paraphernalia at home. We agreed that both the hospital and the midwives had what we were looking for, so we booked a first visit., which we finally had yesterday.

The appointment went great! It’s a group practice so we get a different midwife sometimes but that way we get to know more of the ladies so that we might be familiar with whomever we get come delivery time. Both yesterday’s midwife and the one I met with a few weeks ago were fantastic. Super laid back and easy to talk to. They took plenty of time for questions and didn’t brush off anything (like my OB sometimes did!). No question was silly or seemingly unimportant to them.

I also like the university hospital because we can help people learn! There was a student midwife with us at yesterday’s appointment and I completely expect to see another one in the delivery room (which is more than fine with me – I remember not really caring about “strangers” in the room after a couple hours in labor with our son).

In addition, the facilities are beautiful, the amenities are plentiful (yummy food!) and all the perks that I’m looking for are there (specifically the waterbirth and cord blood donation, which I’ll talk about in a later post).

In March we start group appointments, too, which are regular midwife visits except with several other women/couples who are due around the same time. I’ve heard great things about this method and Mr. Handsome and I are excited to see how it goes! I’ll post updates about how those are working later on the spring/early summer. Today I get to call to schedule our ultrasound too!

Overall, I’m just super happy that we’re finally on track and are feeling good about at least one of the major decisions we have made!