Officially 8 months pregnant! 32 weeks and Baby Boy is the size of a squash! We only have 8 weeks to go!
This week has been crazy and I’m a little late posting a bump update, but trust me… I’ve had a good reason. About a week ago I was exposed to someone with Covid. I got a test on Wednesday and tested negative. I started to develop Covid/flu like symptoms Wednesday night. I got retested yesterday (Sunday) and tested positive for Covid.
This week has been exhausting, challenging and scary to say the least. I am fully vaccinated, and have known full well that I could still get Covid while vaccinated but I can honestly say I did not expect to get Covid 8 months pregnant. I have developed pretty much all the symptoms of Covid these last 6 days including cough, fever, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, shortness of breath, fatigue, body aches, diarrhea, headaches, loss of smell and partial loss of taste.
A lot is up in the air at the moment as I am still waiting to hear from my OB about any testing or extra monitoring for baby and I that may need to be done. All in all, I’m doing okay. It honestly depends on the moment.
Baby is still moving and grooving which gives me great peace of mind. I am also doing my best to rest and take it easy at home while I can before I return to work and leave for maternity leave in a few weeks.
I would appreciate any prayers and good thoughts for my hubby, baby and I. It’s a scary time and there is so much unknown still about Covid. Regardless of our fears we are still doing our best to trust and have faith that we will get through this and all be okay and healthy very soon. ❤️
On Thursday, October 7th I hit 27 weeks. My very last week of the second trimester. I was already starting to feel really pregnant. I went to work that morning tired and sore from Braxton Hicks and possibly some small contractions earlier in the week. When I walked in the door, my boss notified me that we had some extra people and she said I could go home early that day if I wanted. I decided to listen to my body and take the opportunity to go home. So for the rest of the day I napped and relaxed.
Later that evening I started feeling very uncomfortable. My bump felt tight like Braxton Hicks, but I felt pain under and around my bump, I also felt some pain in my pelvis. I tried to just ignore this sensation and sleep it off. Rest didn’t really help and it was hard for me to get comfortable. After a few hours of this pain coming and going, I decided to call Labor and Delivery to see what they say. After everything I told them, they said I needed to come in and get checked out.
Charles and I headed to Labor and Delivery at 1:30am. I texted Alli and let her know what was going on since she is my second support person for birth. Alli headed to the hospital too. When we got there they took my vitals, asked me questions, I gave them a urine sample and they hooked up the baby heart monitors.
After the initial check in it was a lot of just sit and wait. Baby’s heart rate was anywhere between 139-150. They didn’t see any contractions on the monitor, and no sort of infection was seen from my urine. Around 3 the midwife came in to talk to us. And she said the pain could be a variety of things: Braxton Hicks, baby sitting on a nerve, baby growing, round ligament pain and lightning crotch. But we never fully determined what it was.
The nurses gave me some Tylenol and ice to see if that helped, and after about a half hour I was 100% better. I was released around 3:45-4pm. We headed home to get a little more sleep before my normal OB appointment in a few hours at 7am.
I went to my OB appointment at 7am. I discussed a variety of things including Braxton Hicks, work restrictions, breast pump, anxiety, and my 1 hour glucose test. The midwife measured my uterus and I was measuring at 27 cm. Right on track! Baby’s heart rate was also great between 139-145.
After my appointment I headed to the lab to complete my 3 hour glucose test. By this point in the morning I was starting to feel very sick as I had been awake off and on throughout the night and I had been fasting since 10pm. The test wasn’t terrible but it wasn’t wonderful either. I had to have a blood draw before the test, and every hour throughout. With each blood draw I felt more and more nauseated. It felt like time dragged on, and I was so glad once it was over.
I got done with the test around 11:30 and headed home. I ate some pizza, felt a little better and headed to work at 12:30. Before going in to work I received my glucose test results. To my disappointment, I again failed my glucose test. When I got to work I gave the admin team a note from my doctor stating I couldn’t work over 40 hours a week. I
I worked 12:30-6 and as I dragged my feet at the end of my shift I was done. It had been a very long day. When I got home, and got out of the car I looked up at the sky. In between glimmers of sunshine and rain clouds I spotted a beautiful rainbow. My day did not go as planned, but I was definitely being taken care of. Seeing the rainbow gave me hope. Hope for my current circumstances, hope for the future and hope for the rainbow baby I was carrying. 🌈
This month is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. As many of you know I have experienced two losses and now our Rainbow Baby is on the way. Because of this I would like to share some resources I created at the time I was going through my losses in 2019.
You’re in Heaven
The day I found out you were gone, was the worst day.
I didn’t see it coming, and I didn’t want to believe it.
I wanted to scream, cry and run because I was so afraid.
I didn’t want to feel the heaviness of grief wash over me.
I didn’t want to believe you were gone.
As the weeks go by, I hate this but know that this is how it has to be.
The doubts and anger sometimes flutters back.
I thought you were okay, but I guess I was wrong.
I think about you every single day.
I wonder where you are, and if you are happy, safe, near or far away.
It gives me peace knowing you are in a beautiful place.
You’re in Heaven where there is no pain.
I so wish I could meet you and see your face.
But since that’s not a choice I have, I instead wait for the rain.
After the rain there is usually a rainbow.
I see this as a sign from Heaven, that I had to let you go.
You are doing good.
You weren’t meant to live this life with me like I think you should.
26 weeks pregnant and 14 weeks to go! This week baby is the size of a bushel of Kale!
This week’s symptoms include fatigue, hunger and cravings, heart palpitations, lots of baby kicks, round ligament pain, swelling feet, Braxton Hicks, slight leg cramps, and some intense emotions.
The day after I hit 26 weeks, I went and had some blood work done. I had a normal check of CBC as well as the second trimester glucose test. Unfortunately, I failed my glucose test and will now have to go in for the 3 hour glucose test some time next week. I am also slightly anemic. I’m not entirely sure what all of this means, but I am hoping that my doctor will get in touch with me very soon and offer me some guidance.
On a better note, I have an OB appointment coming up this week as well as a virtual Baby Book Shower! I am slowly but surely getting what I need for Baby Boy! My birth plan is written and ready to go, and I plan to start on my hospital bag this week!
24 Weeks! 💕 168 Days 6 months pregnant with 4 months to go! Baby is the size of a Cantaloupe.
Everyday, every hour and every moment is a blessing. I have back pain, fatigue, constant hunger, Braxton Hicks, the constant urge to pee, round ligament pain and other dailly body aches. But you know what else? Everyday I feel little baby kicks and wiggles, I experience joy when I am gifted fun baby supplies, and I fall more and more in love with every ultrasound as I get to see my beautiful Baby Boy. It’s all worth it. All of it. I still have my fears and anxieties of course, but I try not to let that steal my joy. I am so incredibly in love with this baby, and I can’t wait to meet him in January. 💙💙💙💙💙
23 Weeks! Baby is the size of a Grapefruit! Both Mommy and Baby are doing well!
We had a OB check up on Friday and everything is looking good. Baby Boy’s heart rate was 135, and he was just chilling at the appointment since he was up all night kicking mommy. My uterus was measured and since I am 23 weeks, they were wanting the measurements to be between 21 and 25 cm. My uterus was measuring at 22 cm so everything is on track. I’ve also gained 6 lbs since my last appointment 5 weeks ago. So, I now weigh the same amount I did when I got pregnant and have gained back what I lost in the first trimester. Later in the appointment we discussed that I’m fully vaccinated, have been and will likely continue experiencing Braxton Hicks, and what signs to look for if I feel I may be going into labor.
At 23 weeks, this week’s symptoms include hot flashes, shortness of breath, round ligament pain, fatigue, hunger and cravings, baby movements everyday, slight swelling in my feet, and the start of some stretch marks.
Pregnancy is starting to go by very quickly. I’m excited but also feeling a little overwhelmed as I try to get what I can done and ready for baby.
On Thursday August 19th, Charles and I had a very special appointment. I was officially 20 weeks pregnant, and we were scheduled for our anatomy scan that afternoon. Before our appointment I asked many of our friends, family and coworkers what they thought baby was. I would say about 80% of people were guessing girl. Charles’ guess was he wasn’t really sure. From the very beginning I have thought that we are having a boy. However, within the last few weeks I was suspecting that we may be having a girl. Either way Charles and I were going to be thrilled with whatever the gender of our baby would be.
Before the anatomy scan, I was a nervous wreck. I tried to stay calm, pray and reassure myself that baby was just fine. We waited in the waiting room for about 20 minutes before getting called back.
Before starting the scan, the tech told us she would be looking at all of baby’s organs. She explained that she was allowed to tell us the gender if we wanted to know, and all the organs that she was taking pictures of. However, she was not allowed to tell us if she found anything normal or abnormal. After she was finished she would write up her report and give it to the doctor. The doctor would then come in, go over the report and do an additional scan.
The tech tried looking at the gender first since Charles and I had both decided we really wanted to know what we were having. However, baby was being slightly stubborn and sitting criss cross so it was very difficult to see baby’s genitalia. The tech decided to come back in a few minutes and see if baby decided to move.
The tech took pictures of the heart, stomach, bladder, kidneys, diaphragm, and brain. She then went back to see if she could determine baby’s gender. Baby was still sitting cross legged. The tech waited a moment, and the baby started to move it’s legs a little. The tech was then able to get a quick pic. She froze the screen and said “Oh wait, do you see what I’m seeing?” I said no because I had no idea what I was looking at. She then drew an arrow, and said “What do you think this is right here?” Charles and I looked at each other and said we weren’t sure. The tech then said “You’re having a boy, congratulations!” Charles and I were over joyed. A baby boy, and we couldn’t believe it.
Throughout the anatomy scan, I was slightly uncomfortable. It was very difficult to lay on my back as it makes me dizzy and have a headache. The tech allowed me to lay on my side to help relieve the back pain. I also had a full bladder that made my back pain worse, and the pushing of the probe very uncomfortable. After the 45 minute scan I was able to go to the bathroom and rest on my side. The tech left and said the doctor would be in shortly.
When the doctor came in, I held my breath. I was afraid of what the tech might have found. The doctor introduced himself and said the tech didn’t find anything abnormal. And the tech is usually right but it doesn’t hurt to have a second opinion. The doctor confirmed that baby is definitely a boy. Baby weighs approximately 12 oz. and in the 62nd percentile. Baby Boy’s heart rate was 143 and looked completely healthy. Charles and I felt so relieved that our baby was doing just fine.
After getting a burger and fries, Charles and I headed home. We called my parents and grandma and told them we are having a bouncing baby boy. We then ate our food, and put together a cute little gender reveal for social media. I shared with others that baby is healthy and that we would be revealing the gender at 7pm.
Before 7, I texted some close friends and family and told them we were having a boy. And at 7pm we made our big announcement and shared that Baby Rhames is a Boy and posted the picture above. People were shocked but very excited for us.
I am so thrilled to be a Boy Mom! Boys are just goofy, and energized and something else. I can’t wait to snuggle my baby bear, and raise him up to be a polite gentlemen. 💙
18 weeks pregnant, and baby is the size of an artichoke! This week has been pretty crazy, so allow me to catch you up.
On Wednesday, I had a check in appointment with my midwife. We discussed my pregnancy symptoms, getting the Covid vaccine, birth classes and local pediatricians. My midwife checked baby’s heartbeat and baby was definitely moving around in there. She said everything sounded perfect and baby’s heartbeat was 150.
One issue that came up during the appointment is I’m not gaining any weight. In fact, I haven’t gained back the weight I lost in the first trimester which is about 6 lbs. My midwife encouraged me to increase my calorie intake by 300 a day and try to start gaining a little weight.
On Thursday morning I went to work like any other morning feeling completely normal. While at work I went to the bathroom and noticed a tiny bit of light brown blood in my underwear and when I wiped. It was faint but enough that I could see it. I prayed and tried to stay calm.
I let someone from the admin team know what was going on and that I needed to call my doctor. I called the after hours nurse service. I explained that I wasn’t feeling any pain or cramps, and that the blood was light brown. The nurse told me that it’s likely just old blood or I could have over did it. She said if I start to experience pain, cramps/contractions; I start leaking fluid; or the bleeding gets worse then I would need to call back and possibly go into labor and delivery triage.
Throughout the day I tried taking it easy. I sat down in my classroom more than I usually do, I drank lots of water and I didn’t lift anything over 10 lbs. Thankfully I didn’t experience anymore bleeding/spotting except that one episode.
Despite the scare this week, I am really enjoying feeling baby’s little flutters and I can’t wait to find out what we are having in 2 WEEKS! 🎉
At my last OB apptiiontment with a midwife, I was offered some optional prenatal testing called sequential screening. The tests looks for various genetic abnormalities including Down Syndrome, Cystic Fibrous, Spina Bifida and more. The test is done by looking and measuring baby through ultrasound as well as testing for different hormones through a mother’s blood draw.
I considered this test when it was first offered to me, and decided to do it for two reasons. 1) because of my history with miscarriages I wanted to know all I could about baby. and 2) with the family history of my brother dying as an infant I knew I could be higher risk for different genetic abnormalities.
On the day of the test, I was a bundle of nerves, as I always am. I went to work that morning as normal as possible. Teaching preschoolers was a good distraction for most of the day. However, as the time drew closer and closer to the test, my fears and worries started to creep up on me.
I confided in many of my coworkers, and they encouraged me and sent me many positive vibes before leaving for my test. The funny thing is, at the time I wasn’t even concerned about the results of the test or any genetic disorders that may be found. I was actually scared of the actual ultrasound. We all know how ultrasounds give me anxiety since my last two losses. I was more concerned that I had lost baby and didn’t even know it. What if baby’s heart stopped beating? What if baby stopped growing? In between work and my test I also confided in my family and friends, read my bible and did some deep breathing.
Charles and I headed to our appointment. I prayed and talked to him the entire time. Charles reassured me that everything would be just fine. When we arrived, we were called back immediately and shown the ultrasound room. Before laying down and preparing for the heated jelly, I confided in the tech and told her I was very nervous.
I laid down and prepared for the worst but hoped for the best. The tech turned on the screen, asked me some questions and began the exam. I held my breath and watched as she looked for baby. She said “There’s baby, and there’s the heartbeat.” I sighed with relief and thanked Jesus. The tech measured baby’s heart rate and it was 163. Perfect. She then started to take images of baby’s heart, stomach, head, and spine.
Baby made little movements here and there but actually looked like he or she was sleeping. The tech still had a few more images to take. She tried nudging baby with the probe and getting baby to turn or roll over… that didn’t work. She then thought she’d take a moment to look at my ovaries then come back to baby. She continued nudging baby with the probe, asking me to roll to my left then roll to my right then flat on my back. She asked me to roll quickly and roll slowly. She asked me to walk around, do some stretching, and anything to get baby to try and move.
As the tech tried nudging baby again, baby turned it’s head and looked at us. It was hilarious and obviously trying to tease the tech. Then baby started waving it’s arms and tried sucking it’s thumb. Baby even put one hand on its forehead, as if feeling irritated and trying to be dramatic. Baby was just stubborn and really wanted to nap. I told the tech during the appointment that this time of day after work is normally my nap time, so it’s understandable why baby wants to take a nap. Eventually, baby cooperated enough to where we were able to get all the photos needed for the test.
After the test I was given a bunch of pictures of our photogenic baby and sent to the lab for some blood work. I was told all of my scans and blood work would be sent to the Mayo Clinic and I would receive results from them within a week or two.
When it was time to go home, all I could do was stare in awe over baby. So many pictures. I got to see baby move and I got to see baby’s heartbeat. Charles actually enjoyed himself too because baby was starting to look like a baby! I shared the good news with my family and friends. They were excited, relieved and so happy for us.
I even shared this little update on my Facebook page as I truly want to not only share in my pregnancy with others, but also share the struggle of pregnancy after loss. I wrote:
It’s funny, now that writing is my hobby, I’m usually really good at explaining what I’m trying to say. But today, I’m at a loss for words. I guess I’ll try and speak from my heart, and maybe just maybe it will make sense. . I’m going to be completely honest, pregnancy after loss is freaking scary. Sometimes I lay awake at night worried, and over analyzing my symptoms hoping and praying baby is okay. Other times, I am happy, I am at peace and I am content. . Today, I didn’t know what I was feeling. I was hoping and praying for the best, but truthfully planning for the worse. When you’ve gone through loss you know what the heartbreak feels like and you remember the never ending grief, and in someways you never really escape it. . This afternoon we had a special appointment. I walked into the room holding my breath and giving it to Jesus. The minute I heard the tech say “there’s the heartbeat.” I knew it was all okay. . Baby is happy, healthy and stubborn! Heart rate was 163. And I’m measuring a few days early so we are already at 13 weeks! I don’t think I could have asked for better news even if I tried! Baby is okay. We are overwhelmed with joy and feeling so blessed!
On Monday, June 14th I made an appointment with my midwife to check for a UTI. I was scheduled to see a midwife a week later, but was notified that my appointment was cancelled due to a conflict with the provider.
When I got to the appointment, I explained to the nurse that I was 10 weeks pregnant, and needed to be checked for a UTI. She listened and understood. She also expressed how she found it odd that I hadn’t seen a midwife yet for the initial first pregnancy appointment. I explained I had an appointment scheduled but it got cancelled. She said she was going to try and figure something out and see if since I was already there, if they could just do everything at once.
When the midwife came in, she introduced herself and explained that we were going to get everything done that day. She asked how I was feeling and we went over symptoms. She explained different testing that I can get during pregnancy in order to test for various genetic disorders. She also did a Pap smear, checked for a UTI and STIs.
However, before doing all the hard “down there stuff” she said she was going to use a Doppler to check for baby’s heartbeat. I expressed to the midwife that I was very nervous about hearing the heartbeat. After having two losses, ultrasounds and dopplers give me anxiety. She told me to try and stay calm. She said I had only about a 50/50 chance of hearing the heartbeat that day since I was only 10 weeks and a couple days. She encouraged me to at least try it, and if we didn’t hear a heartbeat we could always do a ultrasound.
As I laid back on the table, I prayed to God that his will be done and that he would help in whatever would happen. She put the Doppler on my belly and searched for the heartbeat. I was fully expecting her not to find it, and after a few seconds I heard the quick swishing sound of baby’s heartbeat. The midwife said “there it is. That’s your baby” I started crying, and looked at Charles. We got to hear baby’s heartbeat. Baby was okay. Baby was growing. This was the furtherest along I had ever actually gotten in a pregnancy. I was on a high and beyond thankful. The heart rate was 166 and absolutely perfect.
On Wednesday of that same week, I had an appointment with centering. Centering was a support group offered through my hospital designed to help empower women and build relationships with other moms. I showed up to my OB office to check in with the support group 10 minutes early. I was directed to wait with the coordinator just outside the office. We waited and waited and waited. It was quite awkward to be honest. After waiting an extra 10 minutes, so 20 minutes total, we decided to head over to the classroom building.
At the classroom building I met the midwife and the community health worker. They expressed their gratitude that I came and apologized that I was the only one that showed up. They said centering was a great program, and they would do their best to try and get me in a group, with more people. The midwife said, since I came all that way, I might as well check my vitals and be able to hear my baby’s heartbeat.
I had my blood pressure taken and it was somewhat high for me 129/91. The midwife wasn’t too concerned as I did walk across the hospital campus and was kinda bombarded with information. She said after hearing the baby’s heartbeat we would check my blood pressure again. I also stood on the scale and lost a pound. She said that was completely normal especially since I had been experiencing morning sickness.
After taking my vitals, I was then moved to a bed, where they would pull out a Doppler and check for baby’s heartbeat. I expressed to this midwife that Dopplers and ultrasounds make me very nervous after experiencing 2 losses. She said she completely understood. She did warn me that on the Doppler she was about to use, it was very rare to find the heartbeat before 12 weeks. She said she didn’t want me to panic if we couldn’t find it. If that did happen then she would just take me back to the office to have an ultrasound.
As she pulled out the Doppler and placed it on my belly I took a deep breath. I convinced myself she should be able to find it since, they were able to find the heartbeat using a Doppler before. I prayed. The midwife searched and searched and searched but she could not find a heartbeat. She was able to detect my heartbeat over one of my arteries but she couldn’t find baby’s. I began to panic. No, this can’t be happening again. Baby was fine just two days ago. After a moment the midwife said, “Well, it’s your lucky day. We’re going to take you to get an ultrasound so that you can see your baby again.” She must have saw the panic and fear in my face because she then said “Don’t let that worry you. Like I said, this is a crappy Doppler and very hard to detect a heartbeat before 12 weeks.” I took some more deep breaths and said okay.
The midwife and I walked back to the OB office. I got settled into a room while she searched for a bedside ultrasound machine. I laid on the bed and prepared for the worst. She put the jelly and probe on my belly and looked for baby. Only a few seconds went by and she said “See! There’s your baby. You see the little flicker? That’s baby’s heartbeat. It’s beating strong. Oh look! Baby is dancing!” After hearing this I was finally able to look at the screen. Baby was okay. Baby was on the move. Baby was precious and such a gift. I took pictures of the monitor so I could show Charles later. She said everything looked great and my mind was put at ease. I thanked her for taking such good care of me and baby. She gave me a hug and told me congratulations. Before leaving she took my blood pressure one more time and it was completely normal.
What a week! At 10 weeks, baby reached two major milestones. 1) Baby’s heartbeat could now be detected on a Doppler… depending on the Doppler they use. and 2) Baby is now moving in the womb. I had never seen my baby move on ultrasound before, and it was quite a site to see. Thank you Jesus for this gift! 💕