(Do not expect me to launch into “As Long As We Got Each Other.”)
Today was my 24-week checkup. All was well — my OB found Dubya’s heartbeat immediately and let the sound linger so I could hear her. She was moving around quite a bit. Dubya’s more of a morning person, it seems. She gets a tiny bit active when I’m about to go to bed, but I mostly feel her in the mornings. Does this mean I’m going to have a productive little morning bee on my hands who then goes to sleep at 9:30pm?
Sounds like me in college.
Leading up to this appointment, I’d been a tiny bit nervous. As we approached viability, there have been some women on my birth month board who have lost their children. It’s been completely heartbreaking and, admittedly, worry-inducing. The signs of preterm labor are drilled into our heads.
Last Friday, I started to feel a good amount of pressure in my pelvic region — I felt bloated and uncomfortable but found I could still move with ease. Yesterday, however, when beginning my walk to work, I got what can be best described as a major side-stitch on my right side. Logically, I figured this was round-ligament pain. I took the bus because I knew I couldn’t walk 1.5 miles with that stitch. Then, while I was at work, my stomach was, ah, upset. Piecing together these discomforts and turning to Dr. Google (that hack), I made an emotional leap to worry.
I’ve been remarkably calm with this pregnancy. In all the weeks that have passed, I’ve told myself that nothing my body is doing indicates that anything is wrong — and as Dubya has started to move more and more, I had an extra layer of reassurance. The new discomfort, coupled with the losses on my board, worked to completely unsettle me.
I called my husband yesterday in tears, asking him to reassure me and talk through what I was experiencing. As we talked, I realized that nothing that I was experiencing meant much. My pressure seemed to go away whenever the baby moved up or I had a bowel movement (sorry, TMI). My side-stitches were aches, not cramps. My stomach upset followed a very cheesy lunch. With his help, I calmed down and noted it was lucky that my appointment was the following day.
My OB reassured me that all I was feeling was normal. She reminded me that the uterus is a heavy muscle that’s getting bigger; my baby’s gaining weight; and the placenta adds to the total accumulation. “It’s bound to be uncomfortable and it’s going to get worse,” she said. “If you were to go into preterm labor, you would go beyond uncomfortable, into pain, and your body would tell you something was wrong.”
However, she said, always call if anything is on your mind.
My plan is to take it easy, listen to my body, drink lots of water, and perhaps get a maternity support belt. I’m not carrying big at this point, but with more discomfort coming, best to prepare. My lesson learned is that I can still worry with the best of them, particularly where this little lady is concerned. I can’t believe how much I love her already and I want to do all I can to take care of her.
My next appointment is four weeks from now, and it’ll be my glucose tolerance test. I’m not sure how this’ll shake out, honestly — I was a tiny bit overweight when I got pregnant and my family has a history of diabetes (but not of big babies). However, despite the weight, I’ve always been classified as tremendously healthy by my docs. Blood, blood pressure, and other vitals are always great. So we’ll see. After that, I’ll start going in every two weeks (until the last month, when I go in every week).
I was marveling to my husband about how quickly time has gone when I called to report out on the visit. He chuckled and said, “I don’t know, I feel like this has been going on for a long while.” I know it’s nearly November and we’ve known about Dubya since June, but it still feels like time is flying by.
Watch, my third trimester is going to slow to a crawl.