21 Weeks Pregnant (Baby #4)

Even if we are only 1 week beyond the halfway point, it is so nice to be over the hump of being halfway in this pregnancy. This week was pretty uneventful as far as the pregnancy goes, but man, we were sure busy with the Horse 'O Peace Ranch soap business and other family matters! In other words, a typical week for us.

21 weeks 6 days pregnantHow Far Along: Recapping week 21 (Picture taken at 21w 6d)

How I'm Feeling This Week: Fantastic! This week seemed particularly good on my energy levels each day.

Braxton Hicks Contractions: Yes. Sometimes it's all day long, and other days I'll only get maybe 2 all day. Mildred the Angry Uterus is in total control and doesn't let me in on her plans!

Aversions: My husband's breath, again. Sorry Honey!

Pregnancy Symptoms: 
•bleeding gums when I brush
•vivid dreams 
•skin break-outs 
•dark hair on my belly 
•brittle nails 
•darkened areola
•leg cramps, happens only when I'm pregnant
•sharp ligament pain, occasionally when I cough or sneeze (ouch!)

Doctor/Midwife Appointment: None this week.

17P: We started the 17P injections last week. These are weekly shots that I'm receiving to get enough progesterone in my body to help regulate my horomones, and hopfully get this baby to full term (at least 37 weeks). Normally, I'm one to go a natural route for fixing my body, but after a lot of research, I found that the level of progesterone that I needed for this pregnancy, couldn't be obtained through progesterone/wild yam creams, and that I'd need a prescription for other methods to apply (such as a suppository, or oral pills). Needles don't bother me, and having to get the shot one day a week seemed so much easier than doing the pill or suppository forms, which would have needed to be taken daily or a few times a day.
Symptoms from the shot that I've experienced are: a sore arm for 3 days after the injection, and extreme tiredness that hits me like a freight train about 3 hours after the shot. Thankfully, the tiredness doesn't last very long.

Weight Gain So Far: I'm now eating about 2,100 calories each day in my diet to make sure I'm getting the calories I need to provide for both me and Baby.

After gaining weight too fast at the beginning of this pregnancy, I turned to calorie counting to help me know what my body needed. Nick and I use My Fitness Pal on our iPhones, and we bought a smart scale that syncs up to the My Fitness Pal app. If you'd like to see my diet, you can look me up and I'll add you on my friends list. I'm listed as horseopeaceranch. If it weren't for calorie counting, I'd weigh a lot more by now in this pregnancy. For some reason, I want to be irresponsible in my eating and just go crazy with it. The calorie counting helps me stay accountable and helps me know my limits, or make the decision if I want to splurge.

During the second trimester, I'm supposed to add only 300 extra calories to my regular diet each day, which translates to about one banana and a glass of milk. None of this "eating for two" business!  

Starting Weight: 119 lbs.
Last Week's Weight: 129 lbs. 
Today's Weight: 128 lbs. 
Goal Weight Range For This Pregnancy: High: 154 lbs. Low: 144 lbs.

Food Cravings: I wanted more brussel sprouts this week! I love having them for breakfast especially, or as an afternoon snack. And though it wasn't a craving, I ate a lot of sugar this week. Too much for my good, or the good of a growing baby. That's what happens when you have a 9"x13" cake pan of Eclair Cake, and you make it for a group of people, and then at the last minute you can't go so you are stuck with it to eat on your own. Well, I had a little help.

Regular or Maternity Clothes: I'm still wearing regular clothes.  

Starting to Show: A little more each week I think. Getting harder to hide, not that I'm really trying to.

Boy or Girl: I don't know, but Nick does! He looked at the envelope the ultrasound tech gave us in week 20. After coming home from that visit, I realized, 4 days later, that I hadn't seen the envelopes while I was going about our daily lives. Turns out, Nick has them, so now if I change my mind and want to know, I get to ask him! It has been a little strange between us that he knows something I don't. We are used to sharing every little thing about our lives together, and this is a REALLY big thing! He's been talking about a girl baby and a boy baby to keep me guessing.

Baby Movement: I love feeling this baby, and Nick can feel him/her a lot now too. The movements are much more distinct at this point.

Size of Baby: He/she weighs around 12 ounces. And about 10 1/2" long, or about the size of a carrot.

Car Seat StampWhat I Did to Prepare for Baby's Arrival: I checked on the expiration date for the infant seat to make sure it will be safe for use during the first year of this baby's life. And it passes! Yay! (I found the expiration date stamped on the bottom of the car seat.) Still have a bazillion other things to accomplish before this baby arrives.

Pregnancy Thoughts this Week: I started getting slightly down at the thought of having another boy. After talking through my feelings with Nick, he asked me if I wanted to know the baby's sex, which I still didn't. If the baby is a boy, I want a boy. And if the baby is a girl, I want a girl. I explained that while I've never been able to picture a girl in our family, I was feeling like I'm supposed to pop out a girl to make the people around us happy, and that I'm letting them all down by having another boy. It wasn't that I was unhappy to have another boy (if this is a boy growing in me) but the comments and expectations of people, including strangers, makes me feel like they won't celebrate a boy with us.
Now, nobody has said that, of course. I think, having the ability to find out the sex of a baby early, gives people the chance to put their opinion on the expecting couple, even though everyone knows that nobody has the power to choose the sex of their baby, and what you get is what you get. Plus, I think a lot of people are just trying to make conversation, asking us if we want a girl, or telling us that they hope we have a girl.

After I talked to Nick, I was finally excited at the thought of completing our family with another boy. Even if nobody else would be excited for us (which we know a lot of people will be excited with us no matter what), we are excited to be having another baby, no matter if this baby is a boy or a girl. He/she is already loved very deeply, and certainly have their own place already in our family.