My Second Trimester Recap

Above photo by the sweetest Katie Day at Katie Day Photography 

My goodness, I know this post is months overdue, but with the craziness of the pandemic, giving birth a month earlier than expected, being a first time mom raising a newborn, and stopping maternity leave a month earlier, I’m just holding on to the crazy train that is life right now. It really feels like I’m just trying to survive some days! However, there is still so much I want to share with you about my journey to motherhood so here I am writing my 2nd trimester recap haha!

How my 2nd trimester differed from my 1st

Thank goodness I kept a journal during my pregnancy to remind myself of everything I was going through. My 2nd trimester was definitely a lot easier than my first! The nausea and extreme tiredness of the first trimester went away literally the first week of my 2nd trimester. I felt so much more energy and at times I would even forget I was pregnant because I felt so normal. I was excited to get my appetite back because I literally had no appetite in the first trimester.

Cravings & Aversions

I didn’t have any real cravings in the first trimester so I was excited to find out what I’d want to eat in the 2nd. My biggest cravings were hot dogs haha! Hot dogs are kind of frowned upon during pregnancy because they had to be made sure to be heated to the right temperature but I craved them weekly! I think I really only had about 2-3 hot dogs during my whole 2nd trimester but I thought about them all the time haha. I also craved cake and Starbucks guava white tea drinks. I still had aversions to all beyond burger products unfortunately and I still couldn’t finish big meals. I could only eat about half of a meal and feel full, probably because the growing baby was taking up a lot of room.

2nd Trimester Symptoms

A new set of symptoms started to arrive as the 1st trimester ones waned. (TMI City coming up, so proceed with caution!) I still had crazy sore breasts. They just hurt all the time and that never went away during my pregnancy. A new stereotypical symptom started to gain strength and that was my need to pee. I had to go to the restroom all the time and that was something I never had a problem with before. I was trying to drink as much water as possible to stay healthy so that didn’t help at all haha but I just had to go to the restroom everywhere I went, it was so annoying! Another weird symptom I started getting was something called Lightning Crotch, haha. Technically it’s called round ligament pain and it’s just a shooting pain that comes out of nowhere, like someone just kicked you in your private parts. That was fun.

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Finding Out The Sex of Our Baby!

The 2nd trimester was also when we could find out the sex of our baby! I took an NIPT test which was a blood test that would screen for chromosomal defects but also would tell you the sex of your baby. The results came in the mail and Jared and I read it together. I first looked to see if there were any chromosomal anomalies and thank God everything was looking normal. Then I looked down and it said the baby was female. My husband and I both bursted out crying. We were both ready to be happy no matter what the sex of our baby was. I actually convinced myself I was going to have a boy. I don’t know if it was because I knew I’d be slightly sad to not have a girl to dress up in cute girly clothes, or if because our baby doggy Moby was a boy and I felt used to baby boys somehow haha. When we saw that she was a she I was so beyond happy and thoughts of cute Disney Baby outfits started rolling around in my head and I couldn’t stop thinking if she was going to look like me or my husband. He was also so excited to be a Girl Dad.

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Getting to Tell Everyone We’re Pregnant

It wasn’t until the 2nd trimester when it was safe enough for me to tell everyone I was pregnant. Being older, it always felt like touch and go with every test so we were super cautious to not get ahead of ourselves. The first person I told was my friend Kim. I didn’t plan it haha, but we were at a cool event at the Disney Studios to celebrate the premiere of Disney Plus’ High School Musical the Musical the Series. We were the only ones in the Disney studio theatre bathroom and I just blurted it out and told her haha! It felt so great to tell someone and Kim was the best person to tell because she kept my secret till I announced! I love you Kim!!!! We then told my parents when we visited them. I put a pic of our ultrasound in a card and handed it to them. They were so surprised and never thought they would be grandparents because it took me forever to get married haha. My dad high fived Jared haha, and they were so happy.

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Telling my parents and brother for the first time

Getting Ready For Baby

I started researching all baby stuff, but mainly I started buying all the baby clothes haha. It was so exciting to find all the cute baby clothing companies. It was like a whole new world that I never thought I would be a part of. Some of my new favorite baby clothing stores were Hugo Loves Tiki, Spearmint Baby, and saw that Uniqlo, Zara and HM had a lot of cute baby clothes.

The Coronavirus

I started my 2nd trimester at the end of December 2019 and ended my 2nd trimester in mid March so this is when my pregnancy started to take it’s weird and at times scary turn. January and February was filled with fun events with friends and so much fun announcing to the world that I was pregnant. There was so much fun day dreaming about bringing her to Disneyland for the first time and I even found out of my dear friends Jess was expecting a baby girl about 10 weeks later than I was. 2020 was looking just so exciting! =( Like everyone, in late February there was a lot of news on the news about a virus that was going around. My friend Jaycee warned me about going to Disneyland with the virus starting to run rampant and there was so much talk about washing your hands and using hand sanitizer. It started to get scarier and scarier as a pregnant lady. I remember one of the last times I went to Disneyland, I went by myself and I forgot my hand sanitizer and for the life of me, couldn’t find any to buy at Disneyland. They were all sold out. For the first time ever I was a little bit afraid of what was going on. I couldn’t even feel fully safe being at my happiest place. I also had all my work and health insurance and maternity leave planned out and everything was supposed transition smoothly into going on maternity leave. Being a freelance TV Producer, I was blessed to have work lined up till I was ready to start maternity leave and I was planning on taking a nice month off right before the baby was born. Well that all went up in smoke at the beginning of March and I found myself out of a job, while 7 months pregnant and so uncertain of the future. I didn’t know how I would afford my health insurance while having this baby and all we had was our savings which we were saving up for the baby and to help supplement our income while I was on maternity leave which paid about half of my regular salary. A bit of pre-partum depression started to settle in amongst all of this and I found it harder and harder to celebrate having a baby during all this uncertainty. I found myself taking less and less pictures of my growing bump which I regret now. Luckily, and I know a lot of others were not so lucky, but I had a friend who took sympathy upon me and hired me to work on her show the week after I was let go. I was soooo grateful and at the same time pretty scared because for the first 2 weeks I had to go into the office due to the fact that the company was still transitioning to work from home. For 2 weeks straight, I had to drive to the heart of Hollywood and basically bathe myself in hand sanitizer while not being able to stand close to my dear coworkers who were also my friends. I sat in an office all day by myself, sanitizing my office from head to toe every morning. I was feeling so alone. By then it started to sink in that it wasn’t a good idea to see my friends in person anymore and it wasn’t a good idea to see my parents either, who lived in a retirement community. Thinking back, it was so tough and I do believe this pandemic played a huge part in my post partum depression, which I’ll talk about soon.

Any who, that’s basically how I ended my 2nd trimester, on such a sad note! I started my 3rd trimester just as we started lock down for the Coronavirus. I think that’s why it’s also taken me so long to catch everyone up on what the rest of my pregnancy was like. I’m just finally starting to feel open again about it all so if you’re still with me on this journey, thanks! I’m excited to fill everyone in on the craziness of the past few months and what the rest of my pregnancy was like as well as all the wonderful things about being pregnant and eventually soon I’ll tell you all about Baby Violet’s birth story!=)

On Having A B Belly

I have a B belly, and no I don’t mean beer belly 🤰🏻⁣⁣

I think when you become pregnant you have all these expectations of what it’s gonna be like. Is there gonna be nausea, what are your cravings going to look like and also how is your body going to change? With me being #plussizeandpregnant, there aren’t a lot of pregnant role models out there for me to see. Most of the ads you see of pregnant ladies are adorably “normal sized” ladies with the perfect, cutest bumps. Round, perfect D shaped bumps. As I started to grow I had to come to terms that my baby bump would not look like that. ⁣⁣⁣⁣

I will say it made me sad because since I didn’t start out at what society thinks is the “ideal weight,” I felt my baby bump wouldn’t look like the ideal bump. For a long time I didn’t really “show” I just looked bigger. My B shaped bump didn’t look like a baby bump, it looked like a big muffin top and a muffin top that grew bigger as my baby grew bigger. ⁣

⁣As my B belly started to get bigger, I was just glad my bump was growing and my baby was healthy. I was glad to look more pregnant, even if my bump wasn’t perfectly round. And even though there are so many stigmas about being overweight and pregnant, my baby is perfectly healthy and growing right on track. Being overweight has not impacted the health of my baby at all, maybe just the look of my bump. I am so thankful that I also have a great doctor who has never judged me for my weight or made me feel less than because of it (Shout out to Dr. Latrice Allen, you are the best!). ⁣⁣

⁣⁣So I wanted to take this pic of my B belly bump for all the mamas who also don’t have what they think is the “ideal” looking baby bump. Just because it doesn’t look like everyone else’s baby bump doesn’t mean your baby won’t be perfectly perfect when he or she arrives. It also doesn’t mean that you are less than beautiful than all the other expecting mamas out there. You glow and grow that bump! 🤰🏻✨⁣⁣

My First Trimester Recap

Ahh I can’t believe I’m already in my second trimester but I thought I’d recap what my first trimester was like for those of you that are curious, or even on your own baby journey!

image-1Time really does fly fast while you are pregnant and my first trimester seemed like years ago haha, but that’s only because I’m in the “honeymoon” stage of pregnancy and most of my first trimester symptoms have gone away.

My positive pregnancy test taken on Sat, Oct 12th at like 7am!

So the first trimester is the first 12 weeks of your pregnancy and also the most delicate stage of pregnancy. Usually once you hit the 2nd trimester you can start to feel a little more at ease because your risk of miscarriage goes way down from 80% to almost 5%. Being that I’m a little older, this was always in the back of my mind, and I would feel blessed by every passing week all the while battling some crazy nausea and exhaustion.

The day we found out! Our faces say it all!

My First Trimester Symptoms

So I’m sure a lot of you want to know what dreaded morning sickness ailments fell upon me during my first trimester and to be honest, I feel like I got off pretty lucky. My biggest symptoms were nausea, loss of appetite, extreme exhaustion, sore breasts, getting emotional and crying, and heart burn. One of the reasons for having morning sickness is because your body is trying to develop a placenta to support the baby! This was such an interesting thing that I learned. You’d think that the placenta just happened like the baby just happening, but your placenta needs to develop to feed and nourish your baby and until that happens it’s your body that has to do all the work to keep your baby going and morning sickness is the toll! So interesting!

Nausea / Loss of Appetite

I was really lucky to not throw up once during my first trimester (though I heard it can come back in the third trimester because of heart burn so I’m hoping that doesn’t happen). I dreaded throwing up the most because I really can’t deal with it (not that anyone really can). I literally tried everything in my power not to get too nauseated to the point of throwing up haha. This meant eating ginger candy like these and drinking ginger ale and lemon lime soda. I also made sure I took it easy or napped when I felt nauseated or dizzy. Also it’s true, morning sickness doesn’t happen just in the morning. Most of my nausea happened in the middle of the day and at night.

I also did not want to eat anything because I was so nauseated. I thought that when you got pregnant you would just want to eat anything in sight and that was not the case for me. I could barely get through any meal without pushing my food away. It was even sad when my beloved beyond burgers that I used to love so much, now made me want to throw them out the window. To this day, I’m not sure if I can eat a beyond burger which is so weird because I used to love them before I was pregnant. I ended up losing 8lbs in my first trimester and have yet to gain any of it back. Since I’m already overweight it isn’t something to be alarmed about and the baby is getting all it needs, mostly from my stored energy supply (aka my fat =) haha, which is fine with me! Due to my weight, I was actually advised by my doctor to aim to gain no more than 15lbs during this pregnancy and so far it hasn’t been difficult to do. I don’t know what’s going to happen in the 3rd trimester, but so far it hasn’t been difficult to stay steady at my current weight.

Exhaustion

One of the biggest symptoms that hit me first, even before I took a pregnancy test, was exhaustion. I just felt like I had ran a marathon most days and would feel so heavy and way too tired even to walk up the stairs. I’m a morning person and I’m usually never a napper but I’ve never taken so many naps in my life while in my first trimester. There were even some work days where I just pretty much took the day off and slept all day. Thank God I have a job where I can usually make my own hours as long as I meet my deadlines. Being able to have that flexibility was a God send.

Sore Breasts

Sore breasts were also a big sign I got that made me want to take a pregnancy test. Usually I get sore breasts right before my period but it only last for a few days and its intermittent. This time around my breasts would not stop hurting and it was like 24/7 all day long. Wearing bras even hurt me and sleeping on my stomach was painful. Now in my 2nd trimester they are only sensitive a few times day.

Crying / Feeling Emotional

I feel like some of the first things I did after finding out I was pregnant was cry haha. I mean, being pregnant was just a bit of a shock, even though we were kind of trying, but for some reason, I just did not expect to get pregnant. I mean, I had been with my husband for a very long time and it never happened (well we weren’t really trying, trying) so I think I was just in shock coupled with fears of “how do we afford a baby?” coupled with raging pregnancy hormones haha. I wasn’t crying to commercials or sweet photos of babies, it was like fear crying haha because I’m such a planner and I just wanted to know then and now, everything about being a mom and how to handle it all and how afford it all. I wanted to have it all figured out but being a first time mom I had no clue what was happening each day with my self and anything else, like health insurance and how all that worked! My husband is such a trooper though because he kept me calm even though there were days when nothing he could say to me could make me feel better. Now that I’m in the 2nd trimester, I can see how my hormones played a huge role in my emotions.

Heart Burn

I hated heart burn and to have it coupled with nausea is not cool haha. My heartburn would usually happen at night and there were many a time where I made my husband drive me to the market or gas station late at night to get a ginger ale. So far in my 2nd trimester it has subsided but out of all the symptoms, it still lingers.

Our first sonogram and peek at the little peanut at 7 weeks!

Cravings / Aversions / Eating Healthy for the Baby

I am sad to report that I didn’t have any real distinct cravings during my first trimester, mainly because I was so nauseated most of the time. The only thing I remember craving was cinnamon rolls but I never indulged in any. Also, it seemed like the only thing that didn’t make me nauseated were carbs. I did indulge in the occasional croissant and dessert and still do. One of the first things I was concerned about in this pregnancy was preeclampsia / high blood pressure and gestational diabetes. Preeclampsia is an extremely dangerous thing that you can develop in your pregnancy where if your blood pressure gets too high it can put you and your baby at risk, very quickly. Being that I’m older, it’s my first child and I have a family with a history of high blood pressure and stroke I was very concerned and tried to research as much as I could to prevent these things. One of the first books I bought when I found out I was pregnant was Real Food For Pregnancy I highly recommend this book if you are pregnant and want to know about how to eat healthiest for your baby. Registered Dietician Lily Nichols takes an almost Paleo approach to eating during pregnancy and advocates for little to no sugar and lower carb eating to keep high blood pressure and gestational diabetes at bay.

I will say that the first trimester is the most difficult time to try to stay away from carbs, especially since it’s some of the only things you can keep down. My approach was just to do what I could and eat what I could stand during the first trimester and try to go lower sugar after my placenta formed and the first trimester symptoms went away. I’ve been conscious of my sugar intake also, though I won’t deny myself strong cravings and I try not to have days of just sugar bombing myself.

Prenatal Vitamins

One of the most important things you can do as soon as you find out you are pregnant is to take prenatal vitamins. In fact, my dear friend, who became pregnant years before I did told me her doctor told her to take them well before she even got pregnant so that your body would be baby ready so to speak! The folic acid in the prenatal vitamins helps ensure your baby develops well and isn’t at risk for any neural tube defects. You also need a lot of iron and calcium to help grow a baby. I take these Naturemade Prenatal vitamins with DHA and actually had a bottle laying around a few months before finding out I was pregnant when Jared and I decided we should start trying. I found out I was pregant probably in week 5 so that’s when I started taking them. The DHA in these prenatals are omega-3 fatty acids that help lower your chance of preeclampsia and preterm delivery.

And that’s my first trimester in a not so small nutshell!

Well I think that’s all I can think of about what I went through in my first trimester. I hope that there are some things in this post that are helpful to you! I’m very glad I’m out of the first trimester because the 2nd trimester really has been great! I have so much energy now and my first trimester symptoms pretty much went away within a week of hitting the 2nd trimester. I’m still in the middle of my 2nd trimester so when I’m through it I’ll do another recap! Let me know in the comments below if you have any questions, or what your first trimester experience was like. Also, if you aren’t following me on instagram check me out at @littlesweetkaren. I’ll be doing a lot more day to day baby updates on there as well as a plethora of bump pics! Thanks for reading!=)

*Note: This blog post contains affiliate links which helps support what I do so thank you for clicking on them. I hope they are helpful to you.!

We’re Having A Baby!

Ahh! I can’t believe we’re having a baby! I don’t even know where to start because I feel like my mind has been racing since we found out and every day it’s like I realize, “Wait a minute, I’m going to have a baby! This is insane!”

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Moby is soooo excited to be a big brother!

I know having a baby isn’t a new concept haha, but being a mom is something I felt I always wanted but never knew when it was going to happen.

A Little Background…

Jared and I have been together for a long, long time, haha. We’re definitely late bloomers and it even took us a long time to get married! Many of my 20s and 30s were spent traveling the world for work as a freelance TV Producer. Being a freelance TV Producer, you never know where your next job is going to come from so I just took every job that was blessed to be given to me! I had been able to meet so many amazing people, and celebrities, and I even got to literally travel the world during a show about eating around the world. Though I loved every minute of this jet set life, it was taking a bit of a toll on me. I was never home, I was tired all the time, I was stressed out, I was gaining a lot of weight, I barely had any friends outside of work and I barely saw my family, especially the love of my life. I knew deep down I was living a life led by fear. After going to see my first therapist, I realized, I was afraid that if I said no to these kinds of jobs I would be out of work. Through counseling, and my sweet husband’s support, I realized that I was more than my work and that I was strong enough as a producer to be able to take jobs that kept me home, where I could have a more balanced life, because my life was anything but balanced. I finally married the love of my life, I started working on myself and I was able to find amazing jobs that gave me a great life balance. We adopted the cutest dog ever, I grew my Instagram and also went on a lot of trips to Disneyland, haha!

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Our little nugget at 11 weeks!

Fast Forward to Us Finding Out We Are Expecting…

To be honest, time just felt like it was passing by so fast, the years kept coming and all of a sudden I was a certain age (I know it’s silly, but I’m still kind of sensitive about divulging my age as a lady haha, but if you really want to know, just go ahead and ask haha). I will say I am older than 35 and if you know, or don’t know (I really didn’t know!), that after hitting 35 it becomes harder to get pregnant and stay pregnant. I honestly had no idea!!! If I had known that, I would have tried to have kids years earlier, but I just kept working and working and working! The modern life, I tell you! So we hit a certain age and my husband and I were like, “Well we should start trying.” We probably had been casually trying (I say casually because I wasn’t really keeping track of my cycle) for about 3-5 months and I found out I was pregnant on October 12th, about a month after I got back from my Disneyworld trip with my Dreamy Girl Gang! That means, my husband and I really missed each other during that trip and we made up for it when I got back haha! A few weeks after coming back from Disneyworld I was feeling exhausted, like an exhaustion I had never felt before. Even going up the stairs made me tired and I was thinking, jeeze I need to work out! Also, my breasts were killing me (sorry for the TMI lady talk to any boys reading haha). My boobs had never hurt this much before and I wasn’t getting my period so I had a hunch something was up. Sure enough, I took a pregnancy test at like 7am on Saturday and gave my husband the craziest news to wake up to haha.

A High Risk Pregnancy?

Because of my age and weight, I was automatically classified as a high risk pregnancy and a pregnancy of advanced mature age, so fun! It’s my first kid and already I felt like there were so many things to be scared about. I was terrified honestly, we both were, and we still are sometimes. Also because of my age I had decided to do every screening I was offered. After my genetics screening I found out I was a carrier for Spinal Muscular Atrophy. It’s a debilitating disorder where in it’s most common form my baby probably wouldn’t live past 2 years old. There have been breakthroughs in the treatment of SMA but of course as a new mother it’s terrifying to know your child could suffer. My husband had to be screened and thank God he was not a carrier. So far our little one has passed every single test and marker and we are so thankful for that. There are a few more tests as I progress and we are praying for smooth sailing for the rest of this precious time.

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It’s a Girl!

We had our chromosomal test where everything came back normal, thank God, and with that test we found out we are having a precious baby girl! I am so excited to buy her all the cute pink, pastel, princessy stuff! I’m such a girly girl myself and I wonder if she’ll be just like me haha.

Give Me All the Mommy (Especially Disney Mommy) Advice!

I feel so fortunate to know so many amazing moms in real life and on social media. Even being able to bond with my mom through all this has been amazing. Being a first time mom is crazy and I’m sure it’s gonna be scary and I won’t know what I’m doing most of the time so please, if you are reading this, and you’re a mom, give me all the advice you got to give! Also, what is the best stroller for Disneyland!? I need to know these things haha! What are the items I won’t be able to live without in the new born months? What was it like for you as a first time mom? This pregnant inquiring mind wants to know!

Also, if you are also expecting let me know! I’d love a mommy-to-be buddy!

Soon I’m going to do a post about my journey so far, such as how my first trimester went and what cravings and aversions I had haha! So if you’re interested, keep checking back!

Thanks so much for reading all this! I feel beyond blessed to be carrying this child, especially knowing the odds were against me and there are so many amazing women I know where their own journey to motherhood has not been easy. I pray for all of you out there who’s journey has not been smooth and I pray for you as you wait for your own little miracle 💖