Let’s call this month ‘the switch’. As you guys know, I’ve had my fair share of anxiety so far in this pregnancy. But once we’d had our 20-week scan and got confirmation that our little love was perfectly healthy, everything changed for me. Now, instead of worrying about every little thing that could potentially go wrong, I just feel so calm and trusting that everything will actually be a-okay.
So, let’s catch up on everything that happened in weeks 21-24! Apart from one heart-wrenching day (we’ll get to that in a bit), it was the most lovely, easy month. I had no medical appointments or tests. When I look back, I have a sneaking suspicion that I’ll feel like this was the sweet spot of pregnancy (hello soaring energy levels, a cute, manageable bump and sweet baby kicks on repeat). Let’s catch up, shall we?
Bumpdate: Weeks 21-24
I’ve known right from the beginning of this pregnancy that I wanted to hire a birth photographer to capture our baby’s birthday. Ever since I saw Marcia Leone’s photos of the birth of her daughter, I knew it was something I wanted to do myself. It will be the most important day of our lives and I really want someone there to document what will be such a transformative experience. And how precious to have photos of our first moments as a family together. We won’t ever get those moments back again so I want to make sure they’re captured.
Unlike wedding photography, birth photography still isn’t very mainstream, although I suspect that more and more couples will want to capture their births in the years to come. I’d been doing a little bit of research on birth photographers in Melbourne for a few weeks and was honestly so surprised at how few there were! And even out of those few, there weren’t many whose style I particularly liked.
So when I came across Mel Lawler through @josiebarber’s Instagram (she’d recently hired Mel for a newborn photo shoot), I knew she was our lady. I just love her black and white, documentary style. We met for coffee, chatted about how it all works and I’m now more excited than ever that she’ll be there with us on the big day!
Up until this point, I’d been feeling sweet baby kicks every day. One night when I was 21 and a half weeks, I was lounging on the couch after dinner and felt the familiar nudges start. I could feel them distinctly with my hand so I lifted up my top and for the first time I saw my belly move! I shouted at Ben to look and he saw it too. This baby is growing so strong and healthy, I thought. It was the coolest thing to see.
From that point onwards, whenever I feel strong kicks and I’m at home, I’ll lift up my shirt to try and see my tummy move. It’s not great for productivity, I’ll be honest, but I can’t resist. I’m in complete awe of this little miracle growing inside me.
A few days later, Ben was lying right next to my belly on the couch after dinner. Our little bébé started getting all squirmy again and kicked him right in the head, totally showing him who’s boss already! So funny.
If you remember last month, I’d only just started cleaning out our spare room in preparation for transforming it into the nursery. Well, I really kicked myself into gear this month and made a lot of progress. We had quite a few furniture deliveries arrive (too exciting) and Ben’s been busy assembling it all. I’ve been sharing a few snapshots of the nursery on Instagram stories as it’s been coming together and I’m excited to do a nursery reveal here on the blog once it’s all finished.
Just like I did with the first trimester, I’ll be doing a roundup of everything I bought in the second trimester in a few weeks time. I’ll be linking to all the nursery furniture and everything else I’ve purchased for the baby in that post (it’ll be a big one!). Keep an eye out for that soon.
While I’d been feeling very calm and peaceful for weeks, when June 12th came around, I suddenly became an emotional wreck. This would have been the due date of the baby we lost last year. Even though I can’t describe how grateful I am to be pregnant again with our strong and healthy rainbow baby, my heart still aches for the one we lost. I was so teary and sad on this day and everything about the miscarriage flooded back to me. As always, writing helps me process my emotions so I wrote a little reflection on the blog about pregnancy after loss and how different it is this time around.
Remember how last month I mentioned that I’d started reading up about natural, intervention-free birth? Well, this month I started looking into hypnobirthing. As soon as you’re pregnant, everyone wants to tell you all about their dramatic, traumatic births and it really achieves nothing but makes you fearful. But I’ve had a couple of friends use hypnobirthing techniques during their births and their experiences have been SO much more positive than the friends who didn’t. It’s quite interesting. I was intrigued so I ordered a copy of the Marie Mongan book to start reading up on it.
It all made so much sense to me but I felt like Ben and I should do a more hands-on workshop to fully get the most out of it. So after browsing the Hypnobirthing Australia website, I discovered there was a certified midwife practitioner running courses just five minutes around the corner! I booked us in.
We headed to a single-day workshop and both walked away feeling completely committed to trying for a calm and positive hypnobirth. While hypnobirthing might sound a bit like mumbo jumbo, it’s actually a very grounded approach that focuses on deep relaxation techniques and releasing any fear surrounding birth. Fear creates tension in the body which, in turn, creates pain and is the most common reason for labour stalling and interventions beginning. But the course completely changed my perceptions about expectations of birth and now all I feel is calmly excited about our baby’s birth day.
I’d love to write more about what I’m doing to prepare but maybe I’ll save that for another post. Of course, I’ll also let you know how I go with the techniques during showtime!
And that’s it for this month’s bumpdate on weeks 21-24!
Are you up to date on my pregnancy journey so far? You can find all the bumpdates here.
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