In an effort to keep our family blog, The Parker Pack, from being overrun by pregnancy photos and updates, I’ve started this blog, A Belly in Bloom, to record my voyage through these next 9 months. Check back often for belly pics, sonograms, and just general posts about Mom’s thoughts throughout this journey. Keep watching our original blog, The Parker Pack, to see videos, photos, and more from our day-to-day lives.

Monday, June 23, 2008

19 weeks

Ms. Bean and I are doing well. She's been kicking and moving around quite a bit lately, although I only feel her when I'm lying still. Brad has felt her move a couple of times now, but it is still a rarity--she has to really kick hard or roll over for him to feel. I've gained 10 pounds so far, and I swear it is mostly boobs. I've grown out of all of my old bras and am having to wear my postpartum/nursing bras these days.

Aiden and I have been reading some books about being a big brother that I checked out of the library. He seems to be settling into the idea that he's going to be a big brother soon, but he asks me very frequently if he's still my special boy. I'm always quick to drop everything I'm doing, give him a cuddle and reassure him that he'll always be my special Aiden. I tell him that no matter what he does or how many little brothers or sisters he may have, he'll still always be My Special Aiden and my first child. That seems to reassure him enough to go back to whatever mischief he's into at that moment!

I've been feeling well. I don't tolerate the heat for long periods of time well, and sun exposure makes me break out into a rash and feel achy and tired, but I feel great otherwise. My belly has really started to grow and now gets in the way when I try to hug Brad. Aiden has yet to notice that my lap is getting crowded and is constantly begging me to carry him, but I have to tell him that he needs to walk--it is really hard for me to walk and carry a 35-pound kid these days and I know its only going to get harder, so he'd better get used to the idea now!

Here's an update on what's going on with The Bean:

How your baby's growing:
Your baby's sensory development is exploding! Her brain is designating specialized areas for smell, taste, hearing, vision, and touch. Some research suggests that she may be able to hear your voice now, so don't be shy about reading aloud, talking to her, or singing a happy tune if the mood strikes you.

Your baby weighs about 8 1/2 ounces and measures 6 inches, head to bottom —about the size of a large heirloom tomato. Her arms and legs are in the right proportions to each other and the rest of her body now. Her kidneys continue to make urine and the hair on her scalp is sprouting. A waxy protective coating called the vernix caseosa is forming on her skin to prevent it from pickling in the amniotic fluid.

Next week is our big 20-week ultrasound with the high-risk OB. They'll be checking out The Bean in close detail and we should be able to confirm the sex of the baby that day. Hopefully all will go well and baby is still growing on track. I'm also still in the process of getting an appointment with a rheumatologist. They are having trouble finding a doctor in the area that will accept my insurance plan and that is taking new patients. Hopefully I can be seen soon to get some more answers about all of the weird rashes and symptoms.

Be sure to check back next week--I'll post pics and video from the ultrasound as well as a new belly pic so everyone can see how big I'm getting.