As your pregnancy progresses towards the halfway mark and you treat yourself to those maternity trousers with the big, stretchy waistband, there is no doubt to you and everyone else that you are expecting. I loved this part of being pregnant, for a couple of months after the nausea and tiredness had subsided and the heaviness of later pregnancy hadn't kicked in I felt pretty good and very proud of what my body was achieving all by itself. You can look forward to your 20 week scan, nothing beats the amazing feeling of seeing an actual wriggling, kicking, healthy baby on the sonographer's screen and it certainly makes this pregnancy thing seems very real. Of course the big question at this point is, do you find out the sex of baby, or not? There are lots of traditional ways of predicting baby's sex; dangling a wedding ring over your belly (backwards and forwards like a pendulum equals boy, round and round equals girl), carrying high is supposedly a girl, carrying low a boy, carrying your weight out front equals boy, carrying your weight on your bum and hips equals a girl, heart rate over 140bpm is a girl, under is a boy, and so on, but the only sure-fire way to find out is to ask at your scan and as long as baby doesn't have its legs crossed, the sonographer should be able to tell you. There are some really lovely ways to tell friends and family which flavour baby you are expecting. You could bake a cake with the inside dyed either pink or blue, you could send a blue or pink personalised balloon or teddy to your loved ones or put a picture on social media with blue or pink ribbon tied round your bump or add a pair of blue or pink booties as your profile picture.
Although it may not seem like it at the time, these precious few months will fly by and it is well worth celebrating those pregnancy milestones. Why not start a pregnancy journal to record all those special memories, from cravings to baby's first kick, baby hiccups to Braxton hicks, or maybe as an aide memoire for baby names or nursery ideas? Another fun idea are pregnancy milestone cards, illustrated cards to place on your bump each month, take a photo and have a lovely reminder of your growing baby. Share with friends and family on social media and they can join in with your joy.
Now you can feel movement you can start to get to know the little person growing inside your belly, just as they are starting to get to know you. Baby now has its own pattern of waking and sleeping and although it feels as if they are most often awake and doing somersaults when you are trying to sleep, these reassuring movements mark the beginnings of a bedtime routine. Little one now has their eyes open and will react to a loud or familiar noise. They are getting to know you and other members of your family and will be soothed by these familiar voices and sounds when they leave the womb.
So when the backache gets you down, or the indigestion kicks in, when you're having trouble sleeping or another stretch mark appears, have a sit down and remind yourself what an amazing thing your body is doing. Give yourself a break from worrying and let yourself daydream about the little person about to enter your life (oh, and have that third chocolate biscuit while you can!).
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