Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 13

Well this week I was back doing the job I love. I was working with 3 different families and then on Sunday I spoke at the Baby Wearing Ireland, Wear a Hug Fair. It was a great day and I was honoured to speak as part of their expert panel. There were lots of people to catch up with too. Over all it was a fantastic day full of chatting with new or expecting parents and catching up with old friends. 

With the other women on the expert panel at the Wear A Fair - BabyWearing Consultant Olwen Row from  Born To Be Carried  and Lactation Consultant Mairead Murphy from  Better Breastfeeding . It was so lovely to catch up with them. 

With the other women on the expert panel at the Wear A Fair - BabyWearing Consultant Olwen Row from Born To Be Carried and Lactation Consultant Mairead Murphy from Better Breastfeeding. It was so lovely to catch up with them. 

I have been feeling pretty rough this week. My sickness seems to be getting worse again. Perhaps it is the shock of being back at work (LOL!).  I am lucky to have many friends in the maternity field so I made a few calls and spoke with some HCPs about the sickness. One new drug that seems to be up and coming in Cariban. It is for severe morning/all day sickness and has been used in Australia and USA for many years. It is still new here so I plan to speak with the hospital staff next week at my booking appointment. 

I have taken to driving with a big plastic bowl beside me in the car. I have had a few hairy moments where I could feel I was about to get sick but was in 3 lane traffic with no where to pull in – so the bowl has saved me a few times! 

On Friday I nearly rang my husband to collect me  when I was half way home as I wasn’t sure I could drive any more. After 20 minutes of driving I had stopped 4 times to get sick. I managed to pull myself together and get home. I literally crawled into bed and conked out for 2 hours!

I have decided to pull back a bit on my work load. I absolutely love what I do and I am so lucky to have amazing clients who make me excited to go to work every day. However, I spend my working day minding everyone else and ensuring they are ok. It is time I do the same for myself and baba. So next week I will be working my last night shift for probably a year or two! I can’t believe it. It does seem surreal. 

I managed this week to pop all my pre-pregnancy clothes into black bags and up into the attic. I am firmly out of them now. I am in leggings next size up and some baggy tops from Pennys. I also have a few items I bought that are maternity. To my frustration Paul couldn’t find my bag of maternity clothes from Seth & Leon so I may have to buy some more as I go along. 

Anyway....Until next time... Jen x

 

Week 13: What Is Happening To Your Baby: 

Photo by  Ernest Porzi  on  Unsplash

Photo by Ernest Porzi on Unsplash

  • Your baby is the size of a lemon
  • They may be able to suck their thumb from this week
  • Tiny fingerprints are forming on your baby's fingers
  • The part of your baby's brain responsible for solving problems and memory is starting to form this week 
  • If you are having a boy his testicles are now formed and his penis is growing
  • If you are having a girl, her ovaries are now developed (and contain all her millions of eggs). 

 

 

 

 

Week 13: What Might Be Happening With Your Body:

  • Woo hoo!!! You have made it through the first trimester.
  • You may be noticing an increase in vaginal discharge which will increase throughout your pregnancy due to the increase in the levels of oestrogen in the body. It is there to protect your birth canal from infection. 
  • Your clothes will be definitely getting too tight now. 
  • You might find your energy levels and appetite increasing.
  • You might find your sex drive increased. 

 

Pregnancy Tip: 

You may still be suffering from nausea and vomiting at this stage of your pregnancy. It may just be lingering for a bit longer than the first trimester. For some women it can last a few weeks into the second trimester. There is a chance, however - especially if the nausea and vomiting are still very severe at this point - that you may have a condition called hyperememsis. This is a complication of pregnancy that involves severe nausea, vomiting, weight loss and dehydration. If you suspect you might have this,  it can help to talk to others for support. There is a fantastic group on Facebook here. If you think you may be vomiting excessively do talk to your GP and Healthcare Provider and see if they can provide anything to help. 

     

    Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 9

    So another busy week working in DoulaCare Ireland.  As mentioned I have pulled back a little on night shifts while the first trimester tiredness engulfs my being. This week I am starting to come through it a little. I feel less likely to fall asleep while walking down the road LOL. 

    I am finding baby brain is making paper work last about twice as long and my ability to do mental maths while calculating shifts for our team is not what it once was! I am taking my time and using the calculator on my phone just to be sure, but find myself needing to use my hands to count out even small amounts of time (10am-2pm = 1,2,3,4 hours) Tell me this is normal and my poor brain will recover?! 

    This week I feel I am starting to come through the sickness. I’m back eating dinners now and once I snack regularly I am not gagging (touch wood). I still can’t handle the smell of the fridge – any fridge – and have to hold my breath while searching for items for the kids. This does still set me off and the kitchen sink has become my saviour. I find I am going off food and drinks pretty quickly. 7Up was my best friend for the first few weeks but I can’t stand it now. Perhaps my body knows it won’t be helping the terrible bloating and ****TMI alert****...gas. 

    I am feeling more aware of my tummy and feel a ‘heaviness’ low down. I know my body is telling me baby is there. I haven’t found I need to pee all that much more but when I need to go I do not have the ability to hold it for 4 more hours (working as a doula helps to create a super human bladder - one of the perks!). I am also getting the odd pain, which I am presuming is all the ligaments stretching to accommodate my growing peanut. 

    My oldest boy Seth has been asking me a lot why I am sick all the time. We have decided to tell the kids next week about baby. It is my father-in-law's 60th so we will tell him then, as he has been begging for another grandchild for years and we know he will be thrilled. So close family will know and then perhaps we will start to spread the word. 

    I am unsure how the boys will react. They are both old enough to understand and we hope the gap is big enough they won’t feel shoved out. I will fill you all in next week. How did you tell your other children about your pregnancy?  And how did they react when you did? 

    Until next time...Jen x

    * * * * * 

    Week 9: What Is Happening With Your Baby

    • Your baby is the size of a Grape this week
    • All of baby's essential body parts have formed now. 
    • Your baby's head is beginning to look rounded and there is a clearly defined neck.
    • Your baby's limbs are developing rapidly and you can see clear fingers and toes.
    • Your baby's eyes are fully formed now, but their eyelids are tightly shut (and won't open until 27 weeks). 
    • Your baby's teeth are developing and their heart has divided into 4 chambers 

    Week 9: What might be happening with your body

    • Your hCG levels are at their highest this week - so all the changes to your body that have been happening over the last few weeks can be at their most intense this week (nausea, fatigue, vomiting, frequent urination etc). 
    • Your gums may be softer now with pregnancy hormones - be careful with dental hygiene
    • Those pregnancy hormones can give you lovely skin BUT they can also give you very intense mood swings - so be gentle with yourself and know that these will ease off over the next week or so.
    • Your nose may be very congested - your body often produces more mucus when pregnant, leading to a constantly blocked up nose. 
    • You may be finding it hard to button your trousers or skirts this week as your uterus expands. 

    Week 9: Pregnancy Tip

    You can try the GentleBirth app free for the first week. 

    You can try the GentleBirth app free for the first week. 

    The GentleBirth App is a fantastic tool for pregnancy and birth, with tracks for early pregnancy and mindfulness to help you have a positive pregnancy and birth experience. It's such a  nice way to connect in with your baby throughout your pregnancy. You can try it for free for the first week and there's a fantastic GentleBirth Facebook Group that you can join for support as well (and it's a closed group as you may not want to announce to the world yet that you are pregnant! But to be on the safe side - if you have friends in the group and you don't want them to see you are pregnant yet, you can always join under a fake profile). Get more information on the GentleBirth App

     

     

    Jen's Pregnancy Diary: Week 7

    So I have hit week 7 (I think) I have had to ditch my underwire bras completely as the pain was too much. My boobs have gone up 2 cup sizes already so who knows where they will stop! I am now in the only 34e non-underwire bra I could find in Dunnes during a quick dash between postpartum clients. It’s not pretty but it is way more comfortable. 

    The tiredness has hit me too. I literally feel like I could put my head down on a table and be gone in 1.3 seconds. I sometimes wonder if I could sleep standing up. I have had to pull back on work a little and I am so lucky to have an amazing team of doulas who can step in to cover. In DoulaCare we all work together and there is constant back-up for our clients. I always tell doulas (and the clients we work with) that self-care is so vital. It is so important for a doula to must look after themselves before caring for others. So it is definitely time I actually take my own advice. For now, I am limiting myself to 2 night-shifts a week and ensuring I have at least one full day off to be with my family.

    I have decided to go for an early scan so I am attending the Merrion Fetal Health Clinic on Wednesday and I will have a better idea of dates then. Right now I think our baby is due around the 30th March. For my body that means closer to mid-April as I carried both my previous babies ‘over’. Seth was 40+8 after a painful sweep. Leon was 40+14 after an induction of ARM. Who knows how long they would have stayed in there if left to their own devices LOL!

    Pic: CCO Creative Commons

    Pic: CCO Creative Commons

    There are studies out there that suggest too many ultrasounds are bad for a developing baby, but considering most women only have 2 or 3 scans during pregnancy I have decided to go ahead for my own peace of mind. It is something to consider if you decide to look into early scans. My friend Helen has joked about me having triplets for the past year, and I do feel the universe may feel I could cope as I specialise in supporting families of multiples and premature babies. I, however, am not so sure so I am going in the hope of giving myself peace of mind that there is one little peanut in there! 

    I am excited to let you know how the scan goes. Hopefully, there is a strong little heartbeat and a happy baby in there. Paul is coming with me, which is lovely as I think seeing the baby makes it more real for partners. 

    Until next time...Jen x

    Week 7: What is happening with your Baby

    On Week 7 your baby is the size of a blueberry!

    On Week 7 your baby is the size of a blueberry!

    • Your baby is still an embryo and is about the size of a blueberry this week.

    • The limb buds are developing and look like tiny arms and legs

    • Webbed hands and feet are emerging from these limb buds

    • Your baby has a small tail (an extension of their tailbone) which will disappear in a few weeks.

    • Your baby may be already sucking their thumb.

     

    Week 7: What might be happening to your body

    • You may be experiencing morning sickness (see my post from last week for some tips on how to manage if you are very nauseous)

    • You may have food cravings and/or aversions

    • You may need to pee a lot more even though baby is still tiny - your kidneys are working a lot harder due to increased blood volume in your body.

    • Breakouts of acne

    • Cramping and/or bleeding - it is fairly common for women to feel cramping, and some women will also get some spotting (especially after sex). Do always check in with your GP or midwife if you have any worries about this (always better to be safe than sorry), but it can also be good to know it can be normal.

    • Your breasts may have grown in size (up to a cup size bigger).

    • You may have no symptoms at all at this stage of pregnancy.

    Pregnancy Tip

    • It can help to start your research to choose your care provider at this stage of your pregnancy. Don't just rely on the recommendations of friends and family as their needs could be hugely different from yours. Figure out what you your hopes and expectations are for your birth and talk to a number of different people before deciding on the best path for you.