Weeks 22 – 26

I am now an impressive 3 months late with this post. I’m not sure entirely what I’ve been faffing about at, especially as it’s been written in it’s entirety and sat in my drafts since I was 26 weeks. I’m very lazy. Soz.

Moving House

At 22 weeks 6 days pregnant, we moved house. Massive shout out to the 4 men, 3 trucks, 2 parents and 1 tireless husband who helped us get out of the old house, and in and settled in to the new house in one day. I say “settled”, I mean “there’s space for me to walk from the front door to the sofa”. The rest of the boxes can wait.

Since then, Neil and I have been a dream team whereby I shop for new stuff for the house online, then when it arrives, Neil gets tasked within an inch of his life to do the DIY. I did hang two sets of curtains on my own though, so that’s pretty good.

How many living things can you fit within half a meter squared?

How many living things can you fit within half a meter squared?

I wish I was the type of instagrammer who could take smug little pics of corners of the new house and make them look all stylish and stuff, but I’m not, so consider yourself spared some excruciatingly dull pics of our new sofa cushions. Basically, you’ll just have to imagine them. They’ve got triangles on, it’s pretty exciting.

Positive Birth Group

This month, I did a couple of things that were actually to do with babies, and not to do with working, or moving house or watching True Detective (although I did a lot of those things too). When everyone else was looking up at the solar eclipse through welding masks, I tootled off to a Home Birth/Positive Birth group in Nottingham.

I didn’t really go with any expectations, or any agenda, but it was bloody lovely and I’d definitely go again. Two women bought their babies who were less than a month old, and told their birth stories (one 2nd baby home birth at 14 days overdue, one first time mum hospital birth, two happy mums), and within 4 days of the meeting, two other women who were very pregnant when I met them, shared their birth stories with the facebook group (one VBAC homebirth for baby 3, one with Gestational Diabetes, a homebirth that transferred in, two happy mums). I found the whole thing, of meeting real people and hearing real stories that were all different, but all great experiences really cool and very empowering.

Pretty much everyone I’ve spoken to carries some kind of trauma from their birth experience, and it’s such a pity that it’s that bit we tend to focus on, and not the good bits. I’ve done some good thinking about Billy’s birth, I know I was incredibly lucky to have a relatively uncomplicated birth and a healthy baby, but there’s definitely some things I’d do differently this time around. The biggest thing by far would be to have confidence in my self, and my body’s ability to do its own thing – rather than where, when, or how overdue I am when it happens and what song is playing on my birthing playlist, lolz. Can you remind me of this when I get to 41 weeks and am jogging round the block whilst eating pineapple in an attempt to kick start labour? Ta.

Good face, kiddo

Good face, kiddo

When Billy was born, we got about an inch of water in the birth pool at home before the midwife decided we had to go to our local hospital for a scan to rule out what they thought might be Vasa Previa. In the process, my waters were broken and it all kicked off so fast there was no time to get home and fill the pool. So the home birth was out of the window, which I didn’t mind. The bit I did mind was being stuck on a maternity ward with low tolerance levels for everything, an inability to use my own legs and having to wait all day for a prescription to be filled. So this time, we’re planning for another home birth. If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen, but if I get the opportunity to have a baby, then curl up in my own bed with my own duvet, and my lovely husband, then I can’t really think of anything better than that.

Pregnancy Yoga

This month, I also started attending pregnancy yoga. I say “started” because a week after I started, I missed a class, and the week after, classes weren’t on because of Easter, so to date, I’ve done ONE yoga class. That means I’m a bona fide yogi now, right?

So off I trot to yoga with a mat under one arm and a pillow under another. When I was pregnant with Billy, the pilates and yoga classes both required you to bring a pillow, so I was pretty smug about remembering to take one this time round. Got there, was the ONLY dickhead with a pillow. Everyone else had bottles of water and blankets. Looked like a complete n00b.

Two paintbrushes and "magic paint" (water). Hours of fun for two identically dressed toddlers.

Two paintbrushes and “magic paint” (water). Hours of fun for two identically dressed toddlers.

Not only that, but there were BLOKES there. In fact, I walked in to the room, and walked straight out again because surely the whole being pregnant thing hadn’t changed THAT much in the last 2 years had it? Answer: yes. Of a group of 12 women, three had their partners with them. I felt a bit bad that Neil was at home wrangling a small boy into his batman PJs rather than with me doing what was clearly going to be some smug bonding yoga type stuff, but as the lesson went on, I was more and more glad Neil wasn’t there. There was no smug couple bonding stuff. There was three men who spent a lot of time with their hands on their stomachs connecting with their “babies” whilst a yoga teacher talked about pelvic floor muscles and how remarkable vaginas really are. Might take Neil with me next time, just for the lolz.

I used to think kids running around at weddings were adorable. When we got married, we invited kids as standard and was pretty shocked when everyone except family declined the offer to bring kids with them. Now? I totally get it. Weddings with toddlers involve a lot of running around and trying in vain to keep your kid out of the soil/wedding cake/dj booth (delete as appropriate).

Weddings WITHOUT kids on the other hand are excellent, and we went to two lovely weddings this month.

Pics or it didn’t happen:

Kerry and Matt's wedding

Kerry and Matt’s wedding

Laura and Tom's wedding

Laura and Tom’s wedding

Bump pics

Last time round, I took fornightly photos of my stomach, convinced that marginal changes in shape really proved I had “popped”. This time, my flab is staying under wraps, ta. At 23 weeks, right on cue as I did last time, a tiny bump appeared out of nowhere, and pretty much doubled in size on a weekly basis from that point.

23 weeks (and convinced I was massive, which on reflection, I definitely wasnt)

23 weeks (and convinced I was massive, which on reflection, I definitely wasnt)

And just to prove I’m not lying when it comes to my belly doubling in size week on week, here’s me 3 weeks later in a different, but very similar stripey top (seriously, what is it with maternity clothes manufacturers and stripes? So slimming):

26 weeks

26 weeks

Rainbow Blanket: Important updates
To round of this update, I have some very exciting news: crocheted blanket in “a bit longer than it was last month” shocker. I know. Truly mind bending stuff.

I AM pretty chuffed with myself that when I started this project (which has an alternative title of “the only thing I’m going to crochet, ever”) I eyeballed the length based on my memory of Billy’s star blanket that I was looking to replicate. Three months down the line, I get out the star blanket, and bugger me if I didn’t get the length EXACTLY right. It’s like my secret superpower or something.

Rainbow blanket progress

Rainbow blanket progress

Next month: Turkey! Fainting!Gestational diabetes tests!


23 weeks: Halloween parties, cake club, ketchup tasting and finally putting the bloody cot together

This week has been a busy one. It started with a Halloween party hosted by the lovely Kerry. She put on an amazing spread as ever, and since I found out the last two cases of Listeriosis in the UK were from butter and lettuce, I didn’t give myself the guilts over a bit of Stilton either. AND I stayed up past midnight! What a freaking rebel.

Kerry FORCE-FED us pumpkin cupcakes and cheese. It was TERRIBLE*.

(photo kindly borrowed from Kerry’s Instagram because, lets face it, I was too busy eating to take any pictures)

Over the weekend, we also switched around the second bedroom and the box room, put up the cot and moved the guest bed in to the box bedroom. I would take a photo, but it looks like a room with a cot in it, and I know you’ve got good imaginations.

Sunday bought us October’s Cake Club event, and lots and lots of cake. Can you see a theme emerging here? Wait til you hear this: I didn’t take any photos, as I was too busy scoffing cake, so these are borrowed from the @cakeclubnotts twitter account. De ja vu?

I ate all dese

…and dese.

On Monday, Neil left me all on my lonesome whilst he went on a shoot in Germany. I responded by buying a king-sized fleece dual control electric blanket and spending Monday evening curled up in bed with a cat on my lap, my phone in one hand and my kindle in the other. Me and this electric blanket are going to be friends for a very long time.

Tuesday saw me taking part in a focus group about banana ketchup, which is one of the more obscure ways to spend your Tuesday evenings.

On Wednesday, I attempted Christmas shopping, but after the mile and a half walk there, I realised I couldn’t be bothered to buy presents for anyone else, so bought myself a lipstick and went home. Now, I’m an organised woman with cooking and domestic skillz and all the independence I need, but it doesn’t stop me from getting a bit pathetic when left to my own devices for a few days. By the time Wednesday rolled around, I may or may not have called Neil in Germany to find out whether he could locate the remote control with his mind skills (because I had looked for it for HOURS, couldn’t find it, and therefore Neil had OBVIOUSLY hidden it somewhere before he left), and when he couldn’t, I may or may not have decided that 7:30pm was an entirely reasonable time to turn in for the night with 4oD on the iPad. The offending missing remote was later discovered on the floor, just beneath the sofa, and YESOFCOURSEIBLOODYLOOKEDTHERE.

Thursday saw the arrival of my wool winter coat from the cleaners, which had previously suffered an undignified strawberry yoghurt related injury at the tail end of last winter and lived in a bin bag bag awaiting dry cleaning ever since. This was very exciting as my purple trench looks ace, but doesn’t provide much in the way of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Coat-needs. Less exciting was the discovery that only the top button of my just-cleaned-winter-coat now does up. Harumph. Thursday was also a day of 50% off pizzas at Ask with my friend Kate. I bombarded her with baby related questions until I was blue in the face and left feeling a) very full and b) very calm about impending motherhood. Let’s see how long this lasts, eh?

When I’ve not been busy actually having a social life for once, I’ve also been doing some good baby-growing. This whole bump malarky has crept up on me a bit unannounced. One day I was all ‘Grr, grump grump I don’t even look pregnant’ and the next, I’m huffing and puffing trying to negotiate my way in to a pair of maternity tights. What gives?

Lookit the basketball up my jumper (slightly more demure version, featuring clothing)

So long, waistline. (Shameless belly-out shot, and one of those Dear-God-what’s-happened-to-the-shape-of-my-ass moments)

So next week will be 24 weeks pregnant, which if you work on the basis of 4 weeks to a month, would suggest I was 6 months pregnant. I’ve been perpetually confused by pregnancy timescales ever since I realised there was 4 weeks in a month, but 40 weeks in a pregnancy WHICH ONLY BLOODY EQUALS 10 MONTHS WHICH IS DEFINITELY NOT WHAT I BLOODY SIGNED UP FOR, so 24 weeks doesn’t really mean much. All I know is that the third trimester starts at week 27, which at the minute is a whole other month away. Loads of time to read all the books I’m meant to read and sort out all the stuff I’m meant to sort out. LOADS OF TIME.

This week, I also read something about how the baby took 23 weeks to get to 1lb in weight, but in the next 3 weeks, it’ll double to 2lbs. I can’t find the source of this information, so I may well have made it up, but if I didn’t, it looks like I’m going to be getting considerably fatter in the considerably near future. But then we probably knew that already, didn’t we?