First Trimester Part 1 (Weeks 1-7)

I’m in the first week of my second trimester.  Wow!!  There were days when I felt I wouldn’t survive to say those words, but here I am!  It would have been great to be posting about the first trimester as it happened, but one advantage of looking at it from the other side is that I have… perspective.  This basically means for my readers that I can talk about first trimester in a somewhat positive way instead of writing posts that say something like “Pregnancy is the worst!  Don’t do it!  Haha ha…. ha”. Ugh.  It was rough.

But let’s start from the beginning.

0-3 Weeks:

The first time I got pregnant, I blogged about our conception attempts during month #1 and #2 in great detail.  I’m really glad I did because I love to go back and look at my charts and our conception story.  Hopefully reading about what we did will help others who are trying to get pregnant.  I get a lot of hits on my blog from people looking up information about pregnancy tests from Dollar Tree, which I used a lot of this time.

This time, however, I don’t really feel like going over it in such detail.  We mostly just did the same stuff, anyway, or at least part of it.  I actually did not do any temping this time at all, mostly because we were in the middle of our move and my thermometer was in storage.  We did do ovulation predictor kits (OPKs), cervical mucus checks, and of course I paid attention to the unique little twinges that I get at ovulation.  Those are what actually prompted me to use the first OPK, and it’s a good thing I did because I surprised myself by ovulating much earlier than I’d expected.  I actually got positive OPKs for 3 days in a row, which was pretty confusing, so when calculating my ovulation date I’m mainly relying on the other clues.

These were my OPKs. I skipped a day between the last and second to last tests.  I wish I'd taken one on that day, though, because I think that's actually the day I finally ovulated.

These were my OPKs. I skipped a day between the last and second to last tests. I wish I’d taken one on that day, though, because I think that’s actually the day I finally ovulated.

Much to our surprise and delight, we got pregnant on our first month of really trying!  There were a couple of months before that when we were pretty lazy about preventing pregnancy and even thought we might be pregnant.  When we weren’t, I think the disappointment really prompted us to say “Ok, let’s do this!”  I had wanted to wait to get pregnant until Alex was at least 18 months old.  When that time finally came, however, we were right in the middle of our big move from Michigan to Oregon, we were living in a temporary apartment, and we hadn’t found a house to buy yet.  That’s what made us wait a couple more months.  We found out we were pregnant just 3 days before we moved into our new home!

4 Weeks:

I took a pregnancy test at exactly 12 dpo (days past ovulation), just like I did with my first pregnancy.  I got a good strong positive!

My Big Fat Positive with Baby #2!

My Big Fat Positive with Baby #2!

The moment you find out you’re pregnant is one of those that will stick with you forever.  This time I just felt an overwhelming sense of thankfulness.  I just thanked God over and over and over for the miracle of this baby.  I think knowing what it is to have a child really gives new meaning to the beginning of a pregnancy.  I spent the next few days looking lovingly at my Alex and wondering at the thought of being blessed with another beautiful precious child.  It’s difficult to believe that there is another angelic baby being formed in me right now.

My early symptoms were definitely different than the ones I’d had with Alex.  Instead of big boobs and terrible acne, I was exhausted and hungry, with a little clumsiness thrown in.

RIGHT after I found out I was pregnant, I got this huge giant crazy bruise on my shin!  What?!  This never happens to me, so it must have been pregnancy related.  Low iron, maybe?  I made sure I took all my vitamins after that.

RIGHT after I found out I was pregnant, I got this huge giant crazy bruise on my shin! What?! This never happens to me, so it must have been pregnancy related. Low iron, maybe? I made sure I took all my vitamins after that.

Right at 4 weeks I also felt completely dazed and out of it.  I panicked a little, remembering the feeling from before and wondering if I’d feel like that the entire pregnancy.  I just didn’t feel like myself!  It was like losing your glasses and not really being able to see all day.  Thankfully the feeling didn’t last.  In fact, the very next day we moved into our house, I got busy cleaning and getting ready for my parents to visit, and I almost forgot I was pregnant for awhile!

I didn't take quite as many pregnancy tests as I did with my first pregnancy, but only because I ran out and couldn't sneak away to get some while my parents were in town.  :P

I didn’t take quite as many pregnancy tests as I did with my first pregnancy, but only because I ran out and couldn’t sneak away to get some while my parents were in town. 😛

5 Weeks:

At 5 weeks, lime slices were still helping....

At 5 weeks, lime slices were still helping….

5 days after we found out about the pregnancy, my parents arrived for a week-long visit.  I was SO sad that I couldn’t just tell them I was pregnant, but it was still so early.  If we’d told them, we would have needed to tell other immediate family, and I just didn’t want to risk having to break everyone’s hearts if we had a very early miscarriage.  Three times I almost spilled the beans, though.  The first time was really all the time as I had such a huge appetite and was eating SO MUCH that I was worried my parents would notice, haha!  Another time, I was unpacking a suitcase while talking to my mom.  I saw an unfamiliar-looking shirt of Alex’s and held it up, puzzled.  Then I saw that it was the “Big Brother” shirt that I’d bought to tell my husband the good news and quickly tucked it away!   A quick glance reassured me that my mom had been looking the other way and hadn’t seen it- Whew!  Another time was when I was telling my parents how ever since my pregnancy with Alex I always felt a bit nauseated after breakfast (I thought maybe this would be a clever preemptive strike in case I started looking a little green, plus it’s actually true!).  Then my mom said, “Well, maybe you ARE pregnant!”.  I’m so glad my oh-so-clever response of “HA!” managed to satisfy her….


At 5 weeks we all drove up to the Seattle area to attend my cousin’s wedding.  So many of my family members were there, and I was keeping a huge secret from them!  Thankfully, other than needing to eat on time, I was feeling pretty great still, so I didn’t give anything away.



Alex and his cousin at the wedding.  Adorable!

Alex and his cousin at the wedding. Adorable!

Right at 5 weeks 3 days, feeling great began to disintegrate.  It was the same story as my pregnancy with Alex.  It was two days before my parents left, and I was still able to act pretty normal, though fixing meals was definitely making me feel more and more green.  They left just before things went from bad to worse, never guessing they had been in the presence of their unborn second grandchild.  🙂

6 Weeks:

By the time I hit 6 weeks I was remembering all too well what “morning” sickness was like (and how I resent the inaccurate name).  I threw up for the first time at 6 weeks, 1 day.  Lovely.  I think I’d lulled myself into thinking that maybe I’d feel great all pregnancy, or maybe I’d only feel a little bit nauseated, or maybe I wouldn’t throw up.  Yeah, no.  I was throwing up like a champ and already counting down to the end of first trimester.

7 Weeks:

On the way to the wedding, I noticed that I'd developed a tell-tale pooch!

On the way to the wedding, I noticed that I’d developed a tell-tale pooch!

At 7 weeks we went to another wedding, a whole-weekend affair that was 7 hours away.  I know.  Really bad timing.  When we’d promised to attend, we’d known I’d probably be pregnant, but we figured it would still be fine.  Right up until we left my husband was still saying “Are you sure you want to go?  Should we just stay home?”  He was worried that I’d be miserable the entire time, but I really wanted to go.  A friend who’d just had a baby and had a daughter just 2 months older than Alex was going to be there, and I wanted to spend time with her and give Alex a chance to play with his friend.  I was also hoping that having some fun stuff to do would be distracting enough that I would actually feel better.

Well…. thankfully, I was right!  The weekend turned out really well, and I actually felt pretty great most of the time.  I loved talking with my friend about pregnancy (I let her in on the secret), Alex and my friend’s daughter were just super cute playing together, my husband and my friend’s husband found plenty to talk about, and the whole weekend was so much fun!

The only bad part was that we’d chosen the “camping option” instead of staying in the dorm or guest rooms at the camp, and it was about 40 degrees at night.  We were the only fools camping.  Yeah, so….  camping with a toddler is probably fine.  Camping with a toddler when it’s really cold isn’t such a great idea because they can’t keep their own hats on in the tent at night and you end up waking up every time they move to put it back on for them.  Camping with a toddler in the cold when you’re also pregnant is an even worse idea because of the peeing.  Have you ever been camping, all snug in your sleeping bag and then realized you had to pee?  Sucks to get out of your warm bag and trek to the bathroom in the cold, right?  How about doing that multiple times a night?  😦  I will confess that I didn’t walk all the way to the bathroom because it was about 10 miles away.  I just squatted on the other side of our car.  That is how it is done.  Baby wipes and a wet bag work really well for that kind of midnight bathroom excursion.


The wedding was beautiful, and it was also the only day during the weekend that I threw up.  I thought it must have been because of all that delicious egg and potato casserole I’d eaten at breakfast, but as it turns out it was a harbinger of things to come.

Sunday evening we went and slept in a hotel because we’d had enough of the tent of torture (Am I making it seem worse than it was?  My husband would probably think so.), and Monday we made the long drive home.  And I felt so terrible.  I’d thought my “morning” sickness (do I have to keep calling it that??) had reached an apex at 6 weeks, but apparently that had been nothing.  That phenomenon where a little distraction made me feel so much better?  A thing of the past.  As soon as we got home I took to my bed and pretty much stayed there for the next several weeks.

And now, to illustrate how long those weeks felt, I will end this post now and you will have to wait until part 2 to hear more about my misery.  I’ll bet you can’t wait.  😛

My view from our bed in the living room (we had to sleep there for a few weeks while we were painting bedrooms).

My view from our bed in the living room (we had to sleep there for a few weeks while we were painting bedrooms).


Thoughts on Labor Pain from a Mom Who Birthed Naturally

I found this blog entry today on labor pain and epidurals. It’s well-written and shares this woman’s personal experience giving birth naturally in a free-standing birth center. I think all of us who choose a natural birth hope for an experience as positive as hers, so it’s very encouraging to read!

Thoughts on Labor Pain from a Mom Who Birthed Naturally.

Book Review: Making Babies


I LOVE this book!  I went to my local library this week and checked out a bunch of books about trying to conceive.  I started with the book Making Babies by Sami S. David, M.D. and Jill Blakeway, LAc.  He’s a traditional medical practitioner and she’s a licensed acupuncturist.  Together they have created what may be the most fantastic book available for anyone who is trying to get pregnant.  I absolutely love the philosophy and general tone of the book and have thus far found  their advice to be excellent.  I’m only halfway through but I’m so excited about what I’m reading that I can’t wait to tell everyone!  There are sections for all the areas you must consider when you are preparing your body for the important task of reproduction- including diet, exercise, nutritional supplements, and emotional health.  The book begins by discussing some fertility basics, and then goes on to describe some fertility “types”- Tired, Dry, Stuck, Pale, and Waterlogged- and  then gives advice catered to each type. You should definitely read the descriptions for the different types, but I also found it helpful to go take the type quiz on their website.  I’m the Stuck type.

Even if you think you’ve heard it all, you may learn something new from this book.  There are some surprising strategies you can use to help boost fertility that I had never heard of before- such as eating lots of pineapple after ovulation to help with implantation.  The book helped me to feel encouraged that even if we end up having problems conceiving, I have a resource to turn to.  I also really enjoyed the section about charting your BBT and other ways to pinpoint ovulation.  I never knew there could be so many signs of ovulation!  The complex interplay of hormones is absolutely fascinating for me, and reminds me what a beautiful miraculous process birth is from start to finish.  I feel like keeping a BBT chart would be so interesting that I really wish I’d read this book several months ago and had started charting back in November or December!

If you’re choosing a prenatal vitamin, the book really lays out what you should look for, as well as what other supplements you might want to additionally consider.  The last part of the book addresses potentially fertility problems in more detail.

Making Babies is so good that I would recommend it as good reading even for people who just want to improve their general health- regardless of any plans to conceive!  The authors are very realistic concerning a person’s ability to do everything right all the time.  In fact, they state throughout the book that “80% is perfection”, and I love that.

Making Plans to Conceive

The first year of marriage practically flew by, and we managed to not get pregnant. 😛  Now, in our second year, things are starting to get pretty exciting because we have all kinds of plans for things like houses, gardens, vacations, and yes, BABIES!

My husband and I have really discussed quite a bit whether we want to have kids sooner or later (really, though, later isn’t that much later since we’re both in our thirties…).  I tend to think that the sooner we have kids, the sooner they will grow up, the sooner we’ll have time AFTER children are out of the house to accomplish our travel goals, and the more of their lives we will actually be around to see.  My husband tends to agree, and says he feels ready to be a dad.

So here’s the deal: we have three big exciting vacations coming up,  the last of which is a snowboarding trip to Tahoe in March.  We have been saying for several months now that I can’t be pregnant before then, because I want to be able to go.  Last year was so much fun and I made a lot of progress (I’m a newbie snowboarder).  So then AFTER that vacation….

Now that I’ve gone to the doctor about the chronic pelvic pains I’ve been having and have gotten the go-ahead there, nothing really stands in our way.  My timeline is as follows:

  • January- start taking prenatal vitamins, focus on my personal health
  • March (after our Tahoe trip)- start trying to make a baby!
  • September- I hope to be pregnant!  If I’m not, I’ll make an appointment with my doctor for a laparoscopy.

The time is really coming when I could become pregnant.  Some days I’m so exciting I want to jump out of my skin!  Other days I feel content to wait, but always I anticipate the spring.  I can’t wait to begin this new phase of our lives!

I want to find a good prenatal vitamin that contains “real” vitamins, not just synthetic copies.  Because I want to be in the best possible health during pregnancy, I have been thinking about which areas could use improvement.  I have been working on my diet for awhile now, and while every perfectionist bone in my body continues to scold me for my inconsistencies, I realized that my diet is exceedingly better than that of the general population.  Therefore, I think I want to focus on the habits that are really lacking, namely- enough sleep, consistent exercise (gotta use my yoga groupon), and adequate water consumption.  These can be the bane of my existence, but I’m hoping that the goal of providing a healthy vessel for a growing child will provide incentive that’s been previously lacking.  Wish me luck!  Also, if anyone knows of a fabulous prenatal vitamin, I’d love to get some advice!

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