Trimester Two: Vegas, Pee and Parkour

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I can’t believe it’s time to sit down and write this post. I started thinking about this post three months ago, after completing my Trimester 1 “Report”. I knew there would be a follow up, but it seemed so far off – as have many things (everything?) with fertility and pregnancy has been for us.

Trimester 2 has been filled with just as much learning and change as trimester 1. There has been less vomiting – thank God – and much more peeing. Mostly in my pants. At inappropriate times.

Here’s are some Trimester 2 highlights:

1. Are you still there?
Shortly after entering my 2nd Tri everyone started asking me if I was feeling any movement yet – or “life within,” as my mom calls it. I call it kicking and I didn’t feel it for a long time. So, at every doctor appointment I was super anxious to hear the baby’s heartbeat, indicating there still was “life within”. Given my anterior placenta, my doc explained, it would take a little longer for me to movement.

On May 24th, at 22 weeks + 4 days, as I stood in the security line at the airport I felt three distinct kicks. And I knew there was an actual baby in me. I had to keep my cool as I gathered my gear and scooted through the line to reconnect with my husband who had gotten ahead of me (read: didn’t refuse the “radiation scan”). Once collected, I ran over to tell him. And then I didn’t feel anything for a couple more days. And so it went, teeny tiny kicks here and there, very infrequently for the next couple weeks. Until the parkour began (see #3.)

2. It’s bound to be a redhead.
One of my biggest fears is having a redhead child. Because that might make him/her more like me – anxious, neurotic, sassy, controlling, highly emotional and perhaps a little devious in weird, unexpected ways. But, the more I get to know this baby, the more I think we could have a redhead on our hands. It started around 24 weeks or so, when I was feeling more frequent kicks and movement. EVERY time I would grab my husband’s hand to let him feel it, the movement would stop. Each and every time. Same thing now – I will feel huge movements – my whole belly shifting and bulging. And I’ll look down to try to get an eye witness account and it’ll immediately stop. The kid is already teasing and taunting me – a red head for sure.

3. “It’s going all parkour”.
The first time my husband got to feel a series of movements in my belly (at about 25/26 weeks), he said, “It’s going all parkour!” And he was right. That was the best description of what I was feeling, but I hadn’t been able to put it into words. If you’re not familiar with parkour, it is this crazy running/gymnastics combo that would scare any parent to death. I’m pretty sure it will be Little Bean Dean’s sport of choice – just to keep me peeing my pants for the rest of my life. Here is what parkour looks like – and exactly what I feel in my belly a couple times a day:

4. Mushy mess.
With movement and the realization of there being an actual baby in my belly has come emotions. Lots of ’em. Add to that some hormones and the video above and I can just sit and weep on command. In fact, I’m somewhat obsessed with the video above and watch it regularly, imagining the baby doing the same moves in my belly. And then I think of the metaphor of it all. I hope this baby runs through life carefree and confident. I hope he/she jumps and leaps without fear, always landing firmly, prepared for the next step. And I can tell already this will terrify me at every turn. I will often not be able to watch – I will be too scared – because how can I protect him/her from bumps, bruises, scrapes and crashes – all of which are inevitable, right?

5. More tears.
Along the lines of tears and hormones, everything on TV makes me cry. I started watching Bill & Guliana – and I cry through every episode. I cry through the Real Housewives, too. And they are not sad. They are pitiful. Hormones. . . And yes, I know, I watch awesome TV.

6. Vegas, Baby.
Many couples take a Baby Moon – a final romantic trip before the arrival of their little bundle. Due to a crazy booked summer and many family obligations, we haven’t been able to book a Baby Moon. Instead, we decided to extend an already scheduled trip to Vegas in May. We were heading there for a wedding and added a couple days to just hang out and relax.

Because where else would a pregnant lady want to relax than VEGAS?!? Yes, 5 days of watching others drink and dance as if no one was watching.

We were in great company, among our wedding friends. But, outside of that crowd, OMG. There were moments everyday when I felt like I was in the middle of a filming of MTV Spring Break 2012. It didn’t help we were there over a holiday weekend (Memorial Day), so the crazy was multiplied in numbers of people and volumes of drunken behavior. I frequently found myself starring at the “I Just Turned 21” crowds, horrified. I quickly decided that my child will not go to Vegas until he/she is at least 35. Yes, I’m sure I will be able to influence them with my wisdom and advice for that long.

In spite of the crazy crowds and late nights, we had a great time. Some fun shopping, great meals and time with friends. I stayed up past midnight 4 nights in a row. Given my 9pm pregnancy bedtime, this was a mysterious and magical feat.

Vegas, 22 Weeks

7. Trimester 1, Part II.
There are some parts of my first trimester that have gone away, and I have been more than happy to say good bye (the constant feeling of motion sickness and ensuing barfing in the kitchen sink) and there have been some things that have stuck around. Things that I would have been more than happy to give up.

At the top of the list of “Things I Would Like to STOP” would be the continual, daily enlargement of the MommyBoobs. They continue to be horrifying and inappropriate. The only good thing is that now that my belly is a little bigger, they look slightly, only slightly, smaller. I’m still scared to death of what’s to come. I walked into Nordstrom recently to get a new (read: bigger) black bra and walked out 10 minutes later, refusing to buy the size that actually fit me. I didn’t know bras came that big and I refused to acknowledge that I may need that size. I will continue to suffer with welts across my breasts from bras that are too small. For at least another week at least. Denial is a powerful thing. And I’m determined to will my chest to stop growing.

I’m also determined to get better control of my pelvic floor. I’m sick of peeing with every sneeze. At this point, I have learned I can preventatively run to the bathroom as I feel a sneeze coming on – but instead I choose to take on each sneeze as a personal challenge, convinced if I kegel hard enough I won’t pee myself. And I fail. Every. Single. Time. This has lead to a few public bathroom emergencies – and teaching myself how to stop sneezes at will (finger pressed firmly under the nose works wonders.)

8. Fruitgasms.
Fruit continues to be the best invention ever. I’ve never eaten so much of it in my life. In fact, I’ve never been much of a fruit eater. Now I hoard it. I had my glucose test last Friday and tried to not eat any fruit the morning before the 1pm test. I made it until 11am (I’ve normally had three servings of fruit by then) and I couldn’t do it – I HAD to eat a peach. It was not an option. Fruit = pregnancy crack. Given my fruit addiction I was worried about the blood test results, thinking I would have to go to fruit rehab if I had GD. I got the test results back to find out I have the opposite of GD, hypoglycemia. I’m still figuring out what this means. So far I know I need to eat more often and get more protein.

9. Sleep, or lack thereof.
I’ve been an insomniac all my life. So I considered myself well prepared for pregnancy insomnia. It hasn’t been any worse than my regular insomnia, really. However, my ability to function on 3 hours of sleep is TOTALLY different. I used to be able to cruise through a week of bad sleep with maybe just a bit of crankiness. Now? I can barely make it through the morning if I don’t sleep well. There have been days that I get out of the shower and the exertion from washing my hair has done me in. I do have thick hair, but really?! Showering should not be a workout.

10. Sweat.
Speaking of workouts, here is where I have excelled. My food has suffered, my sleep has suffered, my humor has suffered. But my workouts – they are ROCKIN. I’ve been able to maintain 5-6 workouts a week up to this point. I feel really good about that. I’ve backed off only on my running. In the last few weeks that just got too uncomfortable. So I’m getting my cardio through bodyweight workouts (lots of Tabatas!) Yes, still getting in a ton of burpees, modified with the use of a step and still lifting as heavy as I did before pregnancy. Push ups continue to kill me – since each of my Mommy Boobs weighs at least 43 pounds. But other than that I’m feeling super strong.

I was able to win a “Babe In Belly” race at 22 weeks (ok, I was the only prego to show up.)

IronHeart Classic, 22 Weeks

And this is a workout last week with my trusty 35 lb kettlebell.

27 Week Workout

11. The scale.
I’m trying not to be obsessed with the scale. For the most part I’ve done well with this. That said, I HATE my doctor’s scale, which is significantly heavier than mine. I try to just ignore it, knowing the number really doesn’t matter. It’s JUST A NUMBER… According to my home scale I’ve gained 18 pounds so far – right in normal range for where I’m at. I’m living exclusively in my Lulu gear or maternity wear. Ummmm, maternity jeans?? How did I now know these are the best invention ever. I hate jeans in normal life. I think they are horribly uncomfortable and they give me poor self esteem. But prego jeans? Awe. Some.

12. Boys vs Girls
We have decided not to find out the gender of our baby, much to the chagrin of those who want to know if we’d like pink or blue gifts. Since we’re not big fans of pink or blue, we’re hoping for much orange, red and brown. However, all baby neutral stuff comes in the most bland shades of green and yellow you can imagine . . .

Letting the gender be a surprise was mostly my husband’s idea. Me being the anxious, neurotic, controlling redhead, I kind of wanted to know what we were in store for. But when a few friends told they didn’t think I could handle waiting for 10 months to be surprised, my competitive side took over and I said, “Game on.” I will show them how much I can handle not knowing, not planning, and being 100% out of control of this.

The whole gender thing really comes down to this for us – boys and girls are equally scary. And probably equally joyful. But mostly, as parent virgins, we’re just thinking about the scary part: a little boy who runs wild from age 2-8 or a teenage girl who defies our every wish and command from age 12-18. Equally daunting. So we really have no preference for which kind of fright we prefer. This makes it easier to hold out for the surprise.

13. I am my mother-in-law.
Every time I bend over to pick something up or put on my socks, I let out a grunt and then I stand back up and let out a groan. I sound suspiciously like my 89 year old mother-in-law. I love my mother-in-law and have the utmost respect for her – but I didn’t expect to sound like her just yet. The list of moves that require exertion grows daily. Turning over in bed leaves me breathless – seriously, it’s cardio. And given how often I need to turn over, I’m pretty sure I can count sleeping as a workout.

Overall, this process is pretty cool. As much as it may sound like I’m moaning and groaning, I’m really not. It is absolutley fascinating to watch my body grow a human. And I’m not taking it for granted, given we weren’t sure we would ever get the chance to do this. Time is moving too fast and too slow everyday. There isn’t nearly enough time to get everything done, yet meeting the little guy/gal can’t come fast enough. I guess it’s just the beginning of parenthood – a life of paradoxes: joy, fear, love, anxiety and hopefully lots of laughter.



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