13 October 2015

2nd Trimester | My Experience

Today I am 27 weeks exactly and my 3rd Trimester has officially started. It feels like the 2nd Trimester went on for ages, which I suppose is normal as by the time you find out you're pregnant (in our case at 5 weeks exactly), you're already several weeks into your 1st Trimester (read about my experience here). The 2nd Trimester definitely felt a lot longer to get through, a lot has happened to our growing baby over the 2nd Trimester and my body has changed dramatically.


Aches and pains, sleeping positions and (a lack of) energy levels
I know it's obvious that as a pregnancy progresses, you're going to go through physical, emotional and psychological changes, but I've still been pretty lucky compared to some of the horror stories you read. Like in my 1st Trimester I have been exceptionally lucky to avoid sickness or nausea of any type. I've always been prone to aura migraines and these were becoming more frequent at first, but now they are few and far between. I do get aches and pains; I have a slightly sore back most days now but it's my left shoulder which gives me the most grief.

It's nowhere near as bad now, as I treated myself to a Big Calm Bespoke Aromatherapy Pregnancy Massage which has honestly been the best decision I've made throughout my pregnancy, but at times my shoulder was unbearable. I think a lot of it is due to my new sleeping position, mostly sleeping on my left side which is advised during pregnancy, opposed to my life-time position of on my right side; my body simply isn't used to sleeping in that position. I've spent some days (OK, most days pre-massage) fighting off tears over the sharp, intense pains in my shoulder. Since my massage I haven't felt a single niggle in that shoulder, and I will definitely be treating myself to another before my due date. 

My energy levels have all but disappeared over recent weeks. Some weeks I am absolutely fine, but then I can have days or even weeks where I am unbearably tired every single day to the point where all I want to do is cry and climb into bed to sleep. Something else I have struggled with over the last week or so, is struggling to move around as much. Bending over to pick something up is getting harder and harder, I'm even struggling to put socks on! The biggest struggle though? Turning over and moving around in bed, which is so, so difficult and the time and effort it takes in the night easily wakes me up enough that I then struggle to get back to sleep again. I never expected it to be so difficult! 

All that aside, I think I'd still rather take the few niggles I've had, knowing some people experience much, much harder pregnancies than I am. 

Reaching milestones, getting reassurance and baby movements
We reached a lot of milestones in the 2nd Trimester, with even reaching the 2nd Trimester being a huge milestone in itself. It felt so good to reach the 2nd Trimester, instantly making me feel more confident in this exciting and nerve-wracking journey ahead. This feeling definitely increased tenfold when we reached the 20 week mark, and even more so at 24 weeks when our baby became viable; likely to survive with medical intervention if born prematurely from that point onwards. 

At 15 weeks I had a midwife appointment and we got to hear the strong heartbeat of our baby for the very first time. It was a moment I will never forget, nor the look on my partners face, especially as despite having had our first scan at 11 weeks, I was still paranoid about a missed miscarriage. Hearing that strong heartbeat was the reassurance I needed to get through to the 20 week scan with less worry! At that same appointment my midwife pointed out that the oddly shaped lumps I've felt on one side of my uterus were in fact the teeny tiny feet of our baby poking out. 

Later that day? In that exact spot, I felt a huge push, a definite kick - almost like when you're in a swimming pool and you reach the end, using your feet to kick you off as you move onto your next lap. I was convinced it was too early to feel such a strong, definite movement, but knowing his/her feet were sticking out in that spot, I know it was a kick - and it's exactly how the kicks feel now, although now they are much stronger, all over the place and sometimes so vigorous I end up lurching forwards, which my partner finds rather funny! 

After that first strong movement it was all flutters for a few weeks before I started to feel more definite kicks a few weeks later and at exactly 20 weeks, feeling the kicks for the first time on the outside of my tummy. Since then my tummy has been receiving a constant kicking, with super strong kicks every day and night. Each day I make sure that my partner gets to feel some of the kicks and I know the pattern of our baby quite well by now, even knowing the exact times of day to expect movement, day and night. I always find it funny when the kicks are in the middle of my tummy and I can see them as my tummy bounces and moves. We have one strong and active baby on our hands! 

At 24 weeks we had another midwife appointment, getting to hear their heartbeat again. Like the 15 week appointment we decided to record it, and this time I shared a little snippet with friends and family over on Facebook, as well as a short clip on Instagram. If you're curious, you can listen to Gizmo's heartbeat here!

Being super organised and counting down the days
When we found out we were due just after Christmas with a New Year baby, we both knew we didn't want to spend Christmas and New Year's rushing around trying to get everything ready. Pretty much straight away we decided that the sooner we had everything ready, the better, and we are well on track to have everything ready for Gizmo's arrival by the beginning of December. We've bought practically everything we need to buy, with a couple of last Amazon orders being made over the next few weeks. We've decided that November is the month that we'll arrange and organise the nursery, although we may hold off on doing the painting until after they're born. From December my office will be moving into the bedroom and I'll be giving up half my dressing table, which will become my new desk to work from. Maybe we're a little over organised, but I know I am going to appreciate having everything ready before December and being able to enjoy Christmas without worrying about baby shopping and getting the nursery ready!

Hitting the 27 week mark and being into the 3rd Trimester makes my due date feel so, so close. We've only got 13 weeks to go until our due date and I'm starting to think about birth plans and packing my hospital bags. It's crazy to think that in just 91 days our baby could be here. I've said from the beginning that when we got to this stage, things would fly by; there's Halloween and Bonfire Night, plus our annual local fair, which always make October and November fly by, before the final run up to Christmas and New Year's Eve. I just know it'll make the last few weeks go by so quickly. Let's just hope I don't go overdue!

Here's hoping the 3rd Trimester is as easy on me as the 1st and 2nd Trimesters have been, and that I manage to fight of the insane tiredness until my maternity leave starts at 39 weeks. We're on the final countdown now, and things are getting serious. I don't think I've ever been so excited!

Next Week: Mamas and Papas Baby Haul

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