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Pregnancy

my first trimester with #2

November 3, 2021

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One of the initial inspirations for this blog and Settle Up was to share resources and experiences with other women to help us feel less alone and more supported. I am excited to share this look back at my first trimester with you in the hopes that it connects us in this shared experience and/or you learn something new. Plus it’s a wonderful reflection exercise for me, a thoughtful reminder about each part of this journey.

SYMPTOMS + HEARING THE HEARTBEAT

This first trimester was incredibly different than my previous pregnancies. During my first pregnancy with Jack, I experienced day-long fatigue but had no nausea or any of the other traditional symptoms. With my second pregnancy, I felt incredibly sick and tired, but the pain was localized to my abdomen. In retrospect, it was a sign that something wasn’t right. I felt instantly better after my D+C, despite how emotionally devastating the experience was.

This time around was different yet felt more familiar with my first pregnancy with Jack. The fatigue was the same for the first few weeks and then it all hit around week 8. I joke that I had every symptom listed under “First Trimester symptoms” in What to Expect When You’re Expecting.

I also think that navigating pregnancy while taking care of a toddler should be an Olympic sport. My hat is off to women who have three or more children! It is so much harder to be pregnant and raise little humans than I ever imagined. I was so sick, working full-time, and taking care of Jack. The village around me was of tremendous support. Shout out to Zach and J’s grandparents! I couldn’t have done it without them.

Despite how challenging it was I was grateful to be experiencing symptoms that were unique to our missed miscarriage pregnancy. It gave me the confidence I needed to have faith that this pregnancy wouldn’t end in loss.

I will never forget the first early ultrasound at 8 weeks. Unlike our last ultrasound from the previous year, this one showed a peanut-sized baby with a beautiful, normal heartbeat. The weeks that followed included healthy, normal test results from bloodwork, additional ultrasounds, and dopplers hearing his healthy heartbeat.

Reaching 13 weeks, with a medical chart full of healthy test results, was a huge milestone after our miscarriage. I remember feeling similarly to Jack, as I am sure any parent feels, but this time felt like a massive exhale after holding our breath for weeks. We felt joy, hope, and relief.

THE GENDER REVEAL

We did not find out the gender with Jack and it was the most incredible experience. I loved living into the dream of either having a boy or a girl throughout my pregnancy and hearing Zach say “we’ve got ourselves a boy!” seconds after he was born.

This time around I knew in my heart I wanted to know. I wanted the experience of knowing what I was carrying and if I was going to be really outnumbered. I loved the idea of being able to know what our family dynamic would be and being able to talk to Jack about his baby brother or sister.

I should also mention that I felt in my bones I was having a girl. I had dreams about having a girl when I was pregnant with Jack, the entire first trimester of this pregnancy, and a psychic I met with last fall after my D+C told me that she saw me with a healthy baby girl and that I’d have no issues getting pregnant in the future. I was convinced.

We chose to find out the gender privately and without the typical gender reveal fanfare. If you follow me on Instagram, then you’ve seen the video I made where Zach and I learned that we are having a BOY!

We were both shocked and delighted. We know boys, we love our boy, and when you’ve experienced pregnancy loss, really, you’re just happy you have a healthy baby. We’re so excited to meet this boy and to see him and his brother grow up together.

OTHER NOTEWORTHY MOMENTS

Cravings:

  • Grilled cheese and Caesar salads
  • Sourdough toast
  • Random trips to Red Mill Burger
  • Fettucine alfredo
  • Dark chocolate covered graham crackers.

Habits:

  • In bed every night after we put Jack to bed at 7:30pm. I’d sleep for an average of 11-12 hours a night and still feel exhausted.
  • I continued to teach prenatal yoga and managed to keep my students in the dark until I was 15 weeks. A few of them told me later that they noticed some subtle signs that made them suspicious which warms my heart that they were so observant yet let me keep my secret until I was ready to share.  
  • Monthly facials for self-care and to keep the hormonal acne at bay. What a treat it is whether you’re pregnant or not. Highly recommend! If you’re local to Seattle, go see Carolyn at Cake Skincare. She’s a dream!

Must-Haves:

  • New Chapter Prenatal Vitamins. Whole food vitamins that do not make you sick and are not giant horse pills that are difficult to swallow.
  • lululemon Align Pants. If you know, you know and if you don’t, all you need to know is that they are worth every penny and they last forever. I’m wearing the same ones I wore when I was pregnant with Jack. I love the Super Hi-Rise version to cover my whole belly.
  • Bio-Oil. The tried and true skincare, belly oil that I love to keep my belly skin hydrated and loved as it continues to grow and stretch. While stretch marks are hereditary and there’s not much we can do to avoid them, I’ve found this oil to help keep them at bay and lighten them if they do appear.  

So tell me, what are the stand-out moments from your first trimester with your babe(s)? Any must-haves to add to this list?

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