Second Trimester Update

I had another prenatal visit yesterday morning. Little Dumpling’s heart abnormality bought us another ultrasound with my OB’s office, so we got to take another peak at him. He’s starting to look less like a creepy alien and more like an adorable baby with each passing ultrasound. We even got a profile shot with a cute little nose! Anyway, since it’s been a while since I wrote about pregnancy trials and tribulations, I thought I’d sit down to go over life at 23 weeks and change:

Flutters – Yeah, he’s definitely kicking now. Most of his movements are still felt only internally, but he does occasionally kick with enough force to feel from the outside. I’ve been trying to catch one for Luffy, but Little Dumpling always seems to get shy whenever Luffy’s around.

On a typical day I feel him briefly in the morning, right after waking up. I’ll feel him a couple of times throughout the day, usually after I’ve eaten or when I’m sitting with particularly poor posture (I imagine him in there beating on the wall like can I get some more room woman?!). He seems to be very active later in the day, after dinner. As I’m watching TV or reading for the evening, I’ll feel him squirm and kick and move up a storm.

Weight gain – I was actually really proud of myself at the doctor’s office yesterday because my weight came in at a very reasonable number. I’ve gained just under 15 pounds at 23w, 2d and I am very pleased with that. At my previous appointment (at 19w), I had gained almost 13 pounds and, probably most alarmingly, had gained something like five pounds in three weeks. I vowed to slow that weight gain down and it seems like my efforts have payed off! Or, you know, I could have had nothing to do with it, maybe that’s just how my body wanted to gain weight, but whatever – I’m taking credit for it.

Aches and pains – Of course, with an expanding belly comes abdominal aches and pains. However, since I’m a fairly small person, that 15 pound weight gain has already started to become a bit of a burden. By the end of the day, my feet hurt and my back hurts, my glutes are tight and my calves are weary. Though my abdominal muscles get most of the stretching focus (the cow and cat poses are practically a requirement at the end of the day), my hamstrings need loosening as well. I had hoped that the sheer work of carrying around the extra weight wouldn’t become evident until the third trimester, but that doesn’t look like it’s happening. Little Dumpling’s already 1 lb, 4 oz (rough estimate, obviously) and moving him and me around is WERK. Whew. Guess I should take heart in that it will get better in a bit – November, to be specific.

Speaking of my feet hurting though, I have to take a moment to give a shout out to one of my favorite products – KT Tape. I first heard about KT tape back in college when I went to physical therapy for a stress fracture in my ankle. My therapist snipped off two tiny pieces of tape to place across my foot, saying the tape would help with swelling. I was dubious, but then amazed when, by the next day, the swelling had all but disappeared. I bought my own roll several years later, when regular exercise started to bring back the pain in my ankle (stress fractures basically weaken the bone and make it easy for new stress fractures to crop up). The miracle tape instantly gives me relief from the pain and swelling – like a brace, but way more comfortable and flexible. To this day, I still apply the tape to my ankle whenever it starts acting up. (I have the pro version, in purple. Fantastic.)

Anyway, I’d already seen posts about using the tape during pregnancy, to support the belly, but I had the thought last week that I could probably use the tape to help my feet. Saturday morning, I applied the tape across my forefoot, wrapping under my arch and up towards the inside of my ankle. Immediate relief. Seriously, made all the difference in the world. No knots in my feet and no swelling. Another win for KT tape!

So yeah, doing pretty good at almost six (SIX!!) months along. My belly is becoming more noticeable and strangers are beginning to comment on my pregnant status. I finally bought some maternity tops to wear to work when it became clear last week that my button downs were beginning to stretch a bit past decency. Heartburn is beginning to crop up as my stomach becomes crowded (have I mentioned that I’m a short person??? there’s just not a lot of space for Little Dumpling to work with). According to our ultrasound yesterday, he’s head-down for now, which explains the random times my bladder becomes suddenly compressed (like right now, my bladder is not your pillow child!).

I’ve started looking around for ideas for his nursery. We’re definitely not the types to decorate a nursery (we’re not even painting! cue gasp), but I am looking for a bit of decoration for the walls. Luffy’s parents want to buy us the crib and my mom told me about a fantastic secondhand sale a friend of hers puts on twice a year, so we haven’t purchased anything big yet. Actually, we haven’t purchased anything at all yet. I keep waiting for the “nesting” drive to kick in, but I remain pretty calm and carefree about everything (I mean, so far, there’s plenty of time for that to change).

All in all, Little Dumpling and I are doing just fine and I can’t wait to meet him come Fall.