The Second Trimester
Holy. Moly. We officially entered the third trimester two weeks ago today, which means I can finally write a recap on our second trimester! Most of the moms I’ve spoken to say the second trimester was their favorite, and while I can’t claim that until I’ve experienced them all… I will say, it was a good one.
It’s A Girl!
We found out Baby H’s gender in the very beginning of the second trimester. Well, we confirmed it. I’m one of the most impatient people you will ever meet, and I actually took an at-home blood test at nine weeks to see if it was a boy or a girl. Of course, an at-home test has plenty of room for error and isn’t going to be 100% accurate, but I couldn’t resist doing it anyway. Basically, I pricked my finger, filled up a vial, and send it out to a lab for testing. About 48 hours later, I got THIS email!
I cried, a lot. While we kept repeating over and over, “All we want is a healthy baby!” deep down we both really, really wanted a daughter. From the moment I got that positive test, Jeremy was convinced it was a baby girl. I didn’t have a hunch one way or another until about seven weeks, when everything in my body was also screaming GIRL. Honestly, if that email had said “boy” we would’ve both been shocked.
We took those results with a grain of salt and managed to not buy anything until we got the results of the genetic testing around 14 weeks. The genetic counselor confirmed that baby is a girl, and most importantly, that she looks healthy. Best. News. Ever.
The Best Things
I mentioned it in my first trimester blog post, but so far I’ve been insanely lucky to have a smooth, easy pregnancy. Of course I have a few aches and pains and my digestion is not always the best, but I absolutely cannot complain about my symptoms. I know that some women have a really rough go of it, and I feel so fortunate that I’ve had such a painless experience so far.
My favorite aspect of pregnancy, hands down, is the kicking. I love feeling her movements more than anything in the entire world. Not only is it so reassuring to feel her moving around in there, but it makes me feel so connected to her already. I felt my first kicks right around 19 weeks, and Jeremy was able to feel them around 22 weeks. I still put his hand on my belly to feel her kicks almost daily – it will never get old to me.
Lastly, I freaking love my baby bump. I’ve always loved baby bumps. I think they are the sweetest, cutest, coolest things in the world, and I used to love when women on my social media feeds would post “bumpdates.” I’m totally guilty of spamming my Instagram with bump pictures, but I am just in awe that this is actually my body. Of course, I’ve gained weight in my arms, legs, and face too, but as of right now I really couldn’t care less. I think these physical changes are insanely beautiful and I know all of my weight gain is ultimately helping this baby grow. That said… I am really looking forward to getting back to running once I’m cleared to do so post-birth!
The Less-Great Things
For me, the hardest things about pregnancy have been anxiety-related. I’m an anxious person when I’m not pregnant, and this experience has definitely upped my worrying a few notches. In the beginning I told myself, “I’ll be so relaxed once I make it to the second trimester.” Then it was, “I’ll be so calm once we have the anatomy scan.” Then it became, “I’ll feel way better once we hit viability.” While each milestone does help my nerves a bit, there is always a little worry in the back of my mind. Most of the women I’ve confided in about this have said, “Yep, welcome to motherhood,” which makes me feel much less alone.
My realization is that pregnancy simply makes you vulnerable. Even if a woman does everything right, things can and do go wrong sometimes. I just have to trust my body to grow, carry, and eventually birth this baby. I have to take care of myself mentally and physically and recognize that worrying is not beneficial for anyone. Throughout these 30 weeks (so far), I’ve had to be extremely conscious of my own negative thought patterns and pursue healthier outlets for my… overactive mind. I can still absolutely say that the majority of my pregnancy has been happy and healthy, but the anxiety can definitely creep in if I’m not careful.
Before getting pregnant, I knew Jeremy would be an amazing support system and teammate because he’s just a wonderful person. He’s blown away any expectation I had for him, though. Whether he’s examining nutrition labels to choose the item with the most protein, asking me if he can rub belly butter on my bump, or reprimanding me for getting up to get a blanket instead of asking him to get it for me, he’s bent over backwards to make sure that Baby H and I are taken care of. He tells me daily how much he loves my pregnancy body, and I honestly don’t know if there’s ever been a chapter in my life where I’ve felt more beautiful. Oh, and I burst into both happy and sad tears at the drop of a hat nowadays, and he’s ready to either laugh with me or comfort me, depending on what that particular mood swing requires.
While I’m excited for a lot of things that are right around the corner, I’m most excited to watch Jeremy hold his daughter for the first time. This baby girl has no idea the daddy jackpot she just hit.
As of today, we only have 10 weeks (or so) to go until Baby H is here. Though I still feel incredibly unprepared (What do I need in my hospital bag? How many diapers should we have stocked up? And will I be able to handle postpartum hormones?!) I am so insanely excited to meet this girl who has already stolen our hearts. Considering the amount of times I’ve cried happy tears just feeling her move around in my belly, I genuinely don’t know how I will contain myself once I finally see her. 70 more days!
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