Second Trimester (in the nick of time)

Somehow I’m 27 weeks pregnant. It seems like about a fortnight since we announced that we’re expecting a baby boy in August and now, with just three months to go and a week before entering the THIRD trimester, I’m finally getting around to an update about the second.

This time during my last pregnancy, I was all about taking bump pictures, pregnancy modelling and finding out what size fruit or vegetable the baby matched up to each week. Seriously, I used to wait for the vegetable picture to change every week. Of COURSE, none of this has happened this time around.

Fruit/Vegetable: We’re a cauliflower right about now, apparently; I just looked it up for the purpose of this post.
Number of bump pictures taken: 1 (for this post, you lucky people).
Number of maternity shoots undertaken: 0. (The photo attached to this post is from pregnancy number one)
The difference? A 19m old bundle of energy, who makes every day fly by and fills up my time.

For the last six months, I’ve had a pretty easy ride compared to so many ladies, and for that I am very grateful. Apart from the following, I’ve been very lucky so far.

Insomnia: There are few things more frustrating than everybody else being fast asleep when you’re lying wide awake. Usually, this comes off the back of a 2am trip to the loo (bladder’s getting squished now!) and then I’m awake for 2-3 hours. I’m not stressed, or anxious, just WIDE AWAKE!

Vivid dreams: When I am asleep, the dreams I’m having are very vivid. What causes this? Hormones, of course! They have A LOT to answer for.

Bleeding gums: I wear a see through retainer at night, after dental treatment a few years ago. As if that wasn’t attractive enough, I’ve been waking up to find it full of blood. Thankfully, hubby has usually left for work before I get up, so doesn’t have to see my vampire impression. Fortunately, I don’t suffer from the tender, red or swollen gums that some women do, for which I am grateful. Thanks again, hormones, you absolute delight!

Placenta praevia: Our 20 week scan revealed a slightly low placenta. Fortunately, our sonographer was a lovely chap who reassured me that, though nothing can be done to move it up, they almost always do. I have another scan in five weeks to check on it, and another at 36 weeks if it hasn’t budged. He seemed pretty confident that it wouldn’t affect my plan to birth at home, so I’m not worried about it either.

Painful pelvis: I remember my hips starting to hurt at about this stage last time around. In this pregnancy, my pelvis started hurting weeks ago – everything softened much sooner, which is normal, though frustrating. Relaxin and other pregnancy-related hormones remain in your body until around four months after you stop breastfeeding. As I was still nursing until a few months ago, those hormones are still floating around and are simply being topped up by this pregnancy. I’ve been seeing a chiropractor each week, which is helping keep it in check, plus things like swinging both legs across to get out of bed/the car, not standing on one leg to tie laces and being mindful of it in Relax, Stretch and Breathe classes.

Milk supply: As happens with many women, my milk supply dried up when I was four months pregnant. Though I was happy to continue nursing and would have tandem nursed both babies, when it happened, Primrose was completely unconcerned. I was worried about how I’d get her to sleep/nap but she’d been feeding less and less and often it didn’t send her to sleep anyway. As it happened, she simply wanted to ‘Duggle’ (cuddle) instead, and now lays around the bump listening to her Relax Kids Little Stars CD. (I’ll mention this in more detail in a post about sleep very soon). I am grateful that our journey continued for as long as it did and, though she didn’t ‘self wean’ in the proper sense, I’m glad that she was unfazed by the change and it didn’t unsettle her.

No longer being able to bend over: This happened over Easter – definitely the last time I’ll be painting my own toenails for a few months, and this warmer weather means I can soon be sockless, which is good because putting them on is tricky, despite Primrose’s offers of help!

——

Aside from these changes and niggles, I have little else to report. There are far fewer appointments this time around – I saw my midwife at 16 weeks and won’t see her again until 28 weeks.

Supplements: I get reminded by a little voice each day to take my ‘tabbit’ with breakfast. A good job, because I often forget. Women often don’t bother in second pregnancies, simply because they are too busy or preoccupied, but it’s definitely worth it as it’s common to feel much more tired this time around.

Relaxing: One thing that I have stuck to is Relax, Stretch and Breathe classes each Monday night – my weekly dose of chill. I also try to do something each day to relax – usually a bath once Prim is asleep. I am determined to keep up this ‘self-care’ once this baby arrives, too – I’ve definitely learnt from the last time.

Reading: I’ve just finished Birth: A History by Tina Cassidy. So interesting (though slightly gruesome in places) and well worth a read to help you understand what your body can do and how birth traditions have changed through the ages. I’ve just started The Positive Birth Book, by Milli Hill, which I’ve been meaning to read and review since it was released nearly two months ago – watch this space for a review very soon 🙂 I’m about 20 pages in and already think every pregnant woman should be given one instead of a ruddy Bounty pack.

Planning: Aside from revising my Wise Hippo hypnobirthing material, I’ve been researching homebirth, doulas (hence our recent guest post from Cathy at Chilled Mama), Birth Photography (hubby isn’t convinced), and placenta encapsulation, which will come courtesy of Jade at The Village Midwives.

I’ll keep you posted on the above as I enter the third trimester and edge ever closer to meeting this baby boy. In the meantime, hit me with your homebirth, birth photography and doula experiences – I’d love to hear them!

Jo, The Mother Side x

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