Now well into the second trimester of our first pregnancy, in weeks 16 to 18 the changes are coming in thick and fast, not only for my pregnant wife, but as it turns out, for me too!
First and foremost, the biggest change (in every sense of the word) is her ever expanding bump, which is now standing out and proud for the whole world to see…regardless of how much she may try to hide it under baggy shirts and loose fitting tops.
According to my man’s guide to baby growth during pregnancy, the baby has had yet another serious growth spurt, and as we cross over into week 19 it is now more than 15cm long from head to rump. Undeniably our little bean has come a long way during weeks 15 to 18, growing from the size of a light bulb, through to a softball, then an iPhone, to now being roughly the size of a mini rugby ball today. No wonder my wife’s showing so much!
As she’s grown, I’ve been taken aback at how our bedroom has slowly been overrun by a large selection of new lotions and potions aimed at reducing the risk of the dreaded stretch marks (review of her favourites coming soon), which she dutifully rubs all over her upper body at any and every given opportunity. And there I was thinking that her bedtime cream application routine was complicated enough before she got pregnant?!
Perhaps most exciting of all though is that the baby is now trying its best to make contact with the outside world! Starting in week 17 as a light bubbling feeling in her stomach, akin to the feel of a hunger-induced tummy rumble, this week the baby’s wriggling has become much more pronounced, albeit still not quite strong enough for me to feel from the outside (the thing I’m personally most excited about, as it will be my first real interaction with our baby).
In terms of the classic pregnancy symptoms, I’m pleased to report that during weeks 16 to 18 of pregnancy the morning sickness has largely subsided, while my other half’s chronic fatigue has also levelled off a bit (helping to significantly reduce the unpredictable pregnancy mood swings, you’ll be pleased to know).
Unfortunately though, a wave of new symptoms have taken their place instead, including the onset of pregnancy brain (read all about it here), fear inducing abdominal pains, constant headaches, random outbursts of light headedness and excruciatingly painful night time cramps.
She’s even started having trouble sleeping, as her growing bump makes her usual slumbering position unfeasible, so I suspect we will soon be introducing a third party into our bed; the famous pregnancy pillow. Watch this space…
I’ve been sleeping fine though, in case you were wondering.
However, my pregnant wife isn’t the only one going through major changes during weeks 16 to 18 of pregnancy, as I’m starting to see some changes in myself too.
With our pivotal 20 week ultrasound scan booked in for early May and with every day rushing past in an instant, the time of pre-baby procrastinate is over. The pressure is now firmly on to get my ducks in a row ahead of impending fatherhood (cue stress induced hair loss – oh joy).
So I’ve kicked off a major review of our finances, putting away more money into savings, where I can, to help us cope with all the new baby kit we’ll need to buy before the due date.
Meanwhile we’ve started looking seriously into buying a new family car to replace our old banger (a 2005 three door hatchback with a dodgy clutch), which simply won’t cut the mustard (I’m afraid) once the new baby arrives.
I’ve even noticed a new found broodiness within myself over the past few weeks, as I’ve begun uncharacteristically swoon over any and every new baby I see, hankering for a hold, as my paternal sensibilities kick in. Luckily, this month saw the arrival of my handsome newest nephew Bertie, so at least I have a newborn to practise my fathering skills on before our little bundle of joy arrives in September.
Saying that, I haven’t offered to change his nappy yet…one step at a time.
Nearly at the half way point now…only 21 weeks left to go!
I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s blog. As always, we’d love to hear from you, so if you experienced similar symptoms or indeed anything different during weeks 16 to 18 of pregnancy, please do share your stories, tips and insights with the group via the comments section below.