I’ve finally reached 21 weeks! And, as I had a 41 weeker with Ezra, I don’t count myself as halfway until 21 weeks. So I’m finally halfway there.
Honestly, I’ve hit a wall of discouragement over the past few weeks. In spite of numerous lifestyle changes that I have been focused on with this pregnancy…
(to include regular Webster-certified chiropractic care, drinking 48-72 oz of water per day, attending yoga 1-2 times per week, walking nearly 20 miles a week, being on a completely wheat/soy/tomato/mostly-corn/and-mostly-caffeine free diet, trying to limit sugar consumption, increasing my protein intake, sitting daily on a birth ball, trying to sleep on my left side, drinking herbal tea, and taking supplements and vitamins regularly)
…I feel like I’m pregnant with Ezra all over again. Over the past two weeks I’ve started to gain weight more rapidly, had a host of GI issues, started retaining water in my hands and legs, felt short of breath during exercise, and been hit with a hefty amount of rib and back pain.
I’m starting to realize that, regardless of my lifestyle choices, this is just how my body does pregnancy.
I’ll grab my phone to Google the latest ailment seeking relief, and nine times out of ten I’m already doing the recommended treatment for it.
So, I guess I’m just going to have to deal with it for the next 20+ weeks.
I also received news that the hospital I plan to deliver in no longer (as of last week) allows moms going through a trial of labor after cesarean to use waterbirth. While I still feel confident that I’m in the right place and very confident in my midwifery and doula team, I’m super bummed out that I won’t have water to help with optimal fetal positioning and pain management. It feels like one more hurdle I have to overcome.
In spite of the discouragement and overall discomfort I am feeling, I feel a lot of true peace and settled excitement about this baby.
(18 Weeks ~ In this picture I’m trying to explain to Ezra that I want him to move closer to just capture my belly instead of my whole body. But it turned out rather cute this way I think.)
The relief that I felt when we found out that this baby boy was so indescribable that I actually felt guilty for about 24 hours that I was so relieved. I felt very inadequate, even downright terrified, anytime I thought about being a girl-mom. I felt like a boy would just fit better in our family structure and I feel like…well, I can be a boy-mom. I can do this.
Since then, I have felt much more bonded to baby, thinking and calling him by his name (which shall remain a secret for now), and imagining what our family will be like with him.
(19 Weeks ~ the day of our anatomy ultrasound; also, the reason I make Ezra take my pictures. Because if I don’t, I end up taking 20 awkward selfies and having only one of them turn out relatively decently.)
When we had Ezra, our whole world turned upside-down, which I think is inevitable when you go from being a couple to being parents. We rearranged our whole life to fit him – he ran the show in every way and was the center of our world.
When I think about this baby, I feel like there’s far less rearranging to be done. There’s already a place for him. I wrote this in my birth journal earlier this week:
I feel so very settled about our new baby. Like everything is falling into place. I am so very excited about welcoming him into our home, yet calmly so. There is a definite place for him – just for him – in our lives, and I know he will make our family better, yet without disrupting it completely. With Ezra, our whole world changed when he was born – a topsy-turvy kind of change. Perhaps I am just optimistic – but I feel and expect the change with this one to be more peaceful. He will fit – but not overturn. He will be a beautiful addition to the family structure that we have worked so hard to create for him, and for us. I love him and can’t wait to meet him.
Ezra continues to remain very excited about the baby and chats about him frequently. He gives him hugs every once in a while. And he’s started acting more impatient about “when is baby coming out of your tummy?” The visual calendar we made for him to help him through the changes he’s going through this summer is helpful because it runs through the end of August which is right around my due date. We can easily remind him that when all the days are marked off, that’s about when baby will come. He seems to be appeased with that.
The baby’s nursery is about 90% finished. I hope to share photos in an upcoming post of the space that we have for him, because I’m totally in love with it.
Baby needs no clothes because I’ve saved literally everything Ezra has ever worn. I can’t wait to see this baby in the same clothes and take comparative photos. But, that hasn’t kept me from picking up a few new things, just because. As I said on Facebook: Baby Boy doesn’t need new clothes, but Baby Boy needed these!
Baby Boy is very very active, which is yet another reason I feel like I’m pregnant with Ezra all over again. I’ve always heard that each pregnancy is different and each child is different, but I’m honestly expecting these two boys to have far more in common than what they don’t.
I had an extra ultrasound this week to check Baby’s cardiac structure and function and everything looked normal. There was a soft marker for chromosomal abnormalities found on my first ultrasound, but my quad screen results from 19 weeks were negative so I am not stressed out about that at all.
The doctors want to do an extra ultrasound to check fetal growth next month because of my weird cardiac history and the links between maternal heart problems and IUGR. My next cardiology appointment also isn’t until May. I’m almost annoyed because if there’s anything I’m not worried about it’s baby NOT growing.
For now, I’m trying to stay positive, even when my body feels miserable; to enjoy this pregnancy instead of being so focused on the end-goal; to stay as healthy as I can without being so stressed about checking all the boxes and doing everything right; to prepare for and visualize a peaceful labor and delivery while still remembering that there’s so much more to this baby’s life than how and when he enters the world; and above all…to just relax.
And with that…I’m off to yoga.