January 22nd, 2010

Hello 32 Weeks!

You're 32 weeks pregnant!

Was that a contraction? Yup, but it's just for practice. Those strengthening Braxton Hicks contractions are just your body's way of prepping for the real deal.

To accommodate you and your baby's growing needs, your blood volume has increased 40 to 50 percent since you got pregnant. With your uterus pushing up near your diaphragm and crowding your stomach, the consequences may be shortness of breath and heartburn. To help relieve your discomfort, try sleeping propped up with pillows and eating smaller meals more often.

You may have increasing lower-back pain as your pregnancy advances. Both hormonal and other factors may be contributing to this discomfort: Hormones make your ligaments more lax, your abdominal muscles are stretched, your growing uterus may put pressure on some nerves, and the extra weight you're carrying up front changes your posture and further strains your back.

Baby is the size of a jicama!

By now, your baby weighs 3.75 pounds (pick up a large jicama) and is about 16.7 inches long, taking up a lot of space in your uterus. You're gaining about a pound a week and roughly half of that goes right to your baby. In fact, he'll gain a third to half of his birth weight during the next 7 weeks as he fattens up for survival outside the womb.

Ready or not, baby's getting ready to emerge! He's probably in the head-down position by now, with his bottom facing up. This is the comfiest way for his body to fit in your increasingly cramped womb and will make his eventual exit (only a few months away now!) much easier. (If he's still head-up, don't panic -- there's still time for a flip before birth.)

From me!
Shortness of breathe? Check.
Back pain? Check.
Trouble sleeping? Check.

Whew boy! Oh boy! BOY, STOP IT! Or girl, stop it, whichever you little booger are!

Bending over? Forget about it! I was at the grocery store yesterday trying to get some cans off the lower shelves and I had to squat all the way down then slowly pull myself up. Not so bad if you're only getting one or two items, but if you're trying to price compare a row of items... whew! Not the easiest thing in the world. In fact, it's quite difficult.

Some good news or bad news, depending on how you look at it. My appetite is back. Oh boy, it's back with a vengeance! I am hungry ALL THE TIME (isn't this what the first/second trimester was supposed to be like?} and I still get full easily, but at least I can eat more than a saucer portion of food now! For about two months there I would eat half a regular-sized sandwich and get hungry. Now I eat the whole sandwich, and orange, a small salad, and a glass of milk! Want to know what I brought today to eat? An orange, wheat things, a pudding cup, sliced veggies w/ ranch for dipping, a mixed greens salad w/ lots of veggies and honey Dijon dressing. Oh, and a yogurt! And I ate two slices of toast w/ strawberry preserves for breakfast and am drinking a peanut-butter banana smoothie. And of course, water.

Yeah. Food and me are friends again. I don't dare come to work without anything less than 4 small snacks because otherwise Baby will be gnawing on my insides come 2pm and that just doesn't feel good.

Still have to stay away from cereal and milk, though. And apples. We are definitely not friends right now.

Most definitely not.

Only 8 weeks to go! 56 more days!

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