*16 weeks was actually 3-8-18. I'm a little behind in these posts!*
This baby deep inside me, ever so small, is a child of God. A child that God gave me to take care of whether for a day or for years. That care began at conception. Whether he or she lives or dies each day I am with him or her is a gift and has a purpose with eternal consequences. My baby is now part of my life, my testimony. -Brenda Rogers, "New Rules for Announcing a Pregnancy"
How Far Along? 16 Weeks
"The backbone and tiny muscles in his back are gaining strength, so he can straighten out his head and neck even more. And thanks to his developing facial muscles, your baby is capable of making a few expressive frowns and squints, even at this early stage. His eyes are finally working too, making small side-to-side movements and perceiving light (although the eyelids are still sealed). -What to Expect When You're Expecting
Baby Size:"baby now weighs in at a whopping three to four ounce and he's four to five inches in length. " -What To Expect When You're Expecting
Gender: We'll find out in August!
Weight Gain: No new number yet. I'll update after my next ob appointment.
Belly: Feeling like the belly is growing rapidly. I definitely feel bigger than just 16 weeks. I think that has a lot to do with the extent of diastasis recti from my previous pregnancies.
Sleep: Oh man, I crave rest. My body is having a hard time finding a comfortable position and then reaching a state of rest at night. Add to the sleeplessness the fact that the youngest two children are awake so often in the night, and some days have been just brutal. But, the day must go on! haha
Symptoms: This pregnancy is definitely taking it's toll early on. The body is just not holding up as well as it did in the past.
It's now become mandatory that I wear the compression hose during the day or else I can barely stand or walk on my legs. I have an intense love/hate relationship with them. They get me through, but they're not exactly comfortable or attractive. Oh well, I'll do what's necessary for this little one!
I've also felt the state of my weak ab muscles and subsequently back as well. It can take more effort to maneuver and/or lift as I often need to (ie lifting children in and out of carseats or lifting the double stroller). I constantly catch myself sitting or standing with a slouch, and consciously push myself to work those core muscles to have a better posture. I'm trying not to pay too much attention to this matter though because if the belly becomes as stretched as it did with baby 3, then the ab muscle separation is likely to only get worse. I'm hoping I will be able to find something that I can do after the baby arrives to heal my core. It's a pretty helpful muscle grouping for carrying about the day caring for the home and children. haha
A perpetual lack of rest has also become a more prominent issue. My body is often so achy and tense that I have a hard time reaching the deeper states of rest at night. The level of restlessness is surprisingly intense considering the last four years have had disrupted sleep from children each night. Perhaps it's the greater demand on me during the day while on little rest that makes it seem so much worse. (Maybe this baby will be a good sleeper later. One can dream, right?! haha)
(I'm amazed at women who have much larger families. How they physically carry so many babies is remarkable to me! My body..yeah, it's telling me that this will be our last. It's done. haha)
Clothing: I'm enjoying the new pieces I purchased recently! They have helped a lot in concealing the lovely compression hose in an attractive manner. I still would like to find a few pairs of shoes that would look good with dresses and skirts, as well as be such that covers the obvious ending point of the hose at the toes (I'm thinking something like a simple Keds shoe).
Movement: I'm still staying plenty busy managing the housework and children. Now that the weather is warming up, I'm wanting to resume our daily neighborhood walks. However, the few walks we've been on have resulted in me needing to prop my legs up afterwards. I'll still go for walks because I know it's healthy, but I'll probably wait until David is home so he can push the big stroller (or pull them in the wagon) to take some of the strain off of me. Walks will probably happen less frequently this time around, but they'll still happen. (Walks are one of my favorite activities!). I still think a prenatal yoga or pilates dvd would be really helpful. Something to stretch and strengthen my body a bit. I wanted such as this last pregnancy, but never purchased one. I need to search again and commit to one this time.
Baby Movement: I do believe I'm feeling some rolling around in there! It's still so subtle, but it's there. I'm eager to feel and see much more distinct movements! (I love the period in which the movements are simply magical. Later, they are just plain painful as little ones seem to know exactly where the weak spots of my belly are. haha).
Food Adversions: I still have some challenge at times of eating full meals. Small portions seem to be easier to tolerate. I'm trying to find a good system for really good, balanced meal and snack options that will be suitable for the children and myself. These things take more time and effort, though.
Food Cravings: fruit! Dried fruit, fresh fruit, frozen fruit...bring it on! I love fruit with a passion.
We toured the other hospital in town. I must say, it lived up to all that we had heard about it. The only draw back is that a "laborist" is used during the night shift. (My current OB attempts to make every delivery as much as possible. She's the only one in her practice though and so her lower patient load allows her that ability. The offices/docs that deliver at the other hospital are much larger and it therefore wouldn't be feasible for them to attend every birth day or night). David and I talked about the decision for a while. When I considered the possibility of either myself or the baby being in-patient for an extended time prior to or after delivery (because past experience has taught us to prepare for anything!), then I really wouldn't want to be at our current hospital. I would feel much more cared for at the other hospital. (We noticed a notable difference in the staff between the two hospitals). So, even though I'm comfortable with my current OB and we're nearly to the halfway point, I decided to make the switch.
Unfortunately, after calling and finding out more information on the other OB practice in town that delivers at the other hospital and is covered by our insurance, it looks as though we actually will be remaining with our current OB and hospital. The chances of delivering vbac with the other OBs is slim. There's only three OBs that I know for sure will deliver vbac, with my current doctor being one of them. The other two aren't covered on our insurance. I'd rather remain where we are and have the chance at delivering vbac. I absolutely wouldn't want to have to go for an automatic csection, especially after having two successful vbacs already. So, we'll be staying with the current OB and hospital.
In much less serious news, the nesting with this one is strong! Clutter and messes are driving me nutty! In turn, I'm probably driving David nutty with my need for things to be orderly. I'd like to do a big decluttering of the house before the new baby comes. Less stuff = less to maintain! We also have arranged to have a couple of big house projects to be completed soon. I'm excited to get this place in more of a shape that will be easier for me to maintain, especially with four children four years old and under!