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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Pregnancy update - 11 weeks

I'm now 11 weeks pregnant. (You may notice I've added a pregnancy ticker to my sidebar. --->)

The morning sickness is getting better. I started taking my prenatal vitamin at night right before bed, and I think that's helping. The reason I started taking it at night is that I was taking it right after breakfast, but then I'd usually throw up between breakfast and lunch, so I was concerned that my body didn't have enough time to digest it. So I figured that if I took it before bed, I'd be sure to get the full dose since I wasn't waking up to throw up in the middle of the night. I think making that switch helped for two reasons. First, the vitamin itself can cause upset tummy, so now if it is I'm just sleeping through it. Second, prenatal vitamins are jam-packed with vitamin B, which has been shown to relieve morning sickness. If, by taking my vitamin in the morning, I was throwing up before all that vitamin B could be processed, then it wasn't helping as much as it is now that I'm taking it at night and keeping it down. So now I'm still getting queasy a couple of times a day, but I haven't thrown up in a week or more. Which is a great improvement.

The typical first trimester exhaustion is hitting me pretty hard. I think it's gotten worse lately. I'm finding that I get really tired right around 4pm. I've tried taking a nap when Mira's napping, but that just hasn't worked for me. Mira's nap is usually from about noon to 2:30, and that timing is too early for me to be ready to fall asleep. But I can thank my lucky stars that she is a good sleeper (11 hours straight at night and 2 hours for nap, putting her self to sleep easily every time). So at least I get a good night's sleep every night. Or I *would* if it weren't for... (see the next paragraph).

I've found that in this pregnancy my bladder is hyperactive. It's quite common for pregnant women to have frequent urination even before the uterus is putting any pressure on the bladder. Apparently, it's due to an increase in the amount of blood in the body. In my first pregnancy, with Mira, I didn't have this problem until my third trimester, when the issue was just all the pressure. But in this pregnancy, I've got it pretty bad already. I have to get up twice in the middle of the night to pee: once around 2am and again around 6am. Luckily, I don't usually have trouble getting back to sleep afterwards. So at least there's that.

As far as my health is concerned during this pregnancy, the thing I'm most concerned about is high blood pressure. If I develop either gestational hypertension or pre-eclampsia during this pregnancy, it's possible that the birth center I've chosen may turn me over to a hospital, since they only take on low-risk births. Needless to say, I really don't want that to happen. I didn't develop high blood pressure when pregnant with Mira, but since having had her my base blood pressure has been higher than it was previously. Not too high, but not as low as I'd like either. So while my chances of developing high blood pressure related complications during pregnancy are not high, it is the one thing I'm probably most at risk for, statistically. Healthy diet and routine exercise are the best ways to prevent hypertension, and on those fronts, I'm all set. I have always eaten more fresh produce than anyone I know; Brian says I eat like a rabbit. And my current exercise routine involves either my regular exercise video that I've been doing (off and on) for over a year now, or swimming with Mira at the pool (she has a float that she can sit in and I push her while swimming laps).

Before I found out I was pregnant, I was on a 1200 calorie diet. Due to my nausea, I've not found that hard to stick to since becoming pregnant. But now that my morning sickness is starting to clear up, I'm beginning to wonder how much I should be eating. With Mira I gained around 28 pounds, about 15 of which I'm still carrying. I don't think I need to gain near that much this time. My goal is to keep my weight gain under 20 pounds, but I feel like I could even do less than that and still be healthy. Indeed, my midwife confirmed that my goal was quite reasonable, given my current weight. Unfortunately, our scale broke a while back and I haven't replaced it, so I don't know how much weight I've lost since becoming pregnant, but I *do* know I've lost weight because my clothes fit more loosely. By this time in my first pregnancy, I had already gained 5 pounds and was already wearing maternity clothes. So I think I'm on track for my weight goal. (I know doctors warn against weight loss regimens during pregnancy, but rest assured that I am going about this in a healthy and restrained way. I'm not starving myself and I'm not over working myself. I'm doing this because I know I can do it in such a way that it will be healthier for both me and the fetus than if I "let myself go".)

I've tried on my maternity clothes, left over from my first pregnancy. They all still fit except for two pairs of pants (which I couldn't wear toward the end of my first pregnancy anyway). So luckily, I won't have to buy much this time around. Though I do think I might need to pick up some more casual maternity wear. During my first pregnancy, I was still working, so my maternity clothes are more geared toward looking cute in an office setting than staying comfortable while chasing a toddler. ;-)

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