Sometime between Saturday morning and now (Tuesday night), I sprouted a belly. It wasn't there before, but now....it really is. I can see it pretty obviously, and it's safe to say that everyone who saw me at church on Sunday night was blown away. Last Sunday there was a whole 'lotta nothing. I've started gaining weight which is nice and puts my mind at ease. I've gained back everything I lost during the first trimester and have added three whopping pounds to it.
There are tons of old wives' tales that go along with pregnancy, and none of them interest me save one. Many people say that the way a woman carries her baby in her belly suggests whether it's a boy or girl. The only reason I put any weight into this theory is because I've now witnessed many friends be pregnant. Friends who've had girls look a certain way, and friends who've had boys look a totally different way. I'm sure there are exceptions as there are to every rule, but since I've seen this theory proven several times, maybe it's not all hogwash. Point is....everyone I've talked to thinks I look like I'm carrying a girl.
I don't care what the sex of baby is, as long as it's healthy. Seriously. Clark and I both think that there are pros and cons of either one, and we don't really have a preference. If you put a gun to my head and told me I had to choose, I think I could admit to wanting one slightly more than the other, but it's like 50.1% for one and 49.9% for the other. (And no, I'm not telling you which one's which). Regardless, my gut tells me it's a girl. I've dreamt that it's a girl and when I think about the baby, my mind is just more inclined to think girl things. I don't know....just a gut feeling. I'd be happy with either, but I would be surprised if it was a boy. We'll know within 20 hours!
Preggo-wise, I've been feeling pretty good. I've got an occasional achy back, but that's it (and I don't even need Tylenol for it - it's not that bad). My headaches have gone away and my appetite has come back. I've got more energy overall, but sometimes after lots of activity I do feel like I've hit a brick wall and I have to stop and sit. I did have a nasty, evil cold for two weeks. It probably felt worse than a normal cold only because there was very little medicine I could take to relieve my symptoms. It was a head cold for one week before moving down to my chest for the rest of the time. I completely lost my voice for about five days and I've still got a wet cough that just won't quit, but it's nothing that's getting me down anymore. Oh! Good news! Sometime after 18 weeks I went off of my anti-nausea medicine again to see if it had passed, and I have yet to get sick again! I think it's over for good and I'm totally thrilled about that.
When I was really sick, I had feelings like, "what if it's this bad the whole time?," "what if it's this bad every time?," and "how can I possibly be sick like this while having to take care of a toddler (or even more kids)?" I think I'm over it now. That first trimester was hard, I have to admit (and it didn't turn off like a switch like I was told it would...I'm just now starting to get my groove back consistently). In the midst of all the grossness I was feeling, I lost my memory of what it felt like to just feel halfway decent. I was worried that I'd never feel good again but....I thank God that I do! And now, just as quickly as those concerns had come, they've gone again. I'm so hungry nowadays that now instead it's becoming hard to remember what it was like to feel sick and have no taste for food! I feel fortunate to have had a rough experience so that I can relate and empathize with other women, and also to know that I can live through it and that it gets better. That alone is enough of an encouragement to myself that I look forward to going through it again and again (God willing) to bring more little ones into the world. So a note to my future sick-preggo-self who I'm sure will read this post in a few years in search of some hope: it will go away, you'll be happy again soon, and it will all be worth it. So keep your chin up and hang in there!
We've got a few things for the baby's room. (Does anyone else NOT like the word "nursery"? I just don't like it. My personal opinion is that it's too traditional-sounding and like a nursery should be a big room with lots of random babies. After tomorrow, we will be calling that room [insert baby's name here]'s room.) We've got a crib and a changing table both assembled, the beginnings of my cloth diaper stash arranged cutely on the shelves of the changing table, and a bedding set for one particular gender (not telling which). The story behind that is that I found a twin-sized bed-in-a-bag set that - if it turns out to be that gender - I will take apart and make into a baby linen set. It was a great deal and Clark said I should get it, even just to hang on to for "someday" if it's not this time. That room will be totally gender-specific, so pretty much we just need to wait a smidge longer to get started on it.
Oh my goodness, tomorrow. I don't know what "normal" emotions are to have about what's happening tomorrow, because I've never had a 20-week ultrasound appointment before. I've had several friends who have had bad experiences with that appointment, one of them being completely devastating. Part of me wishes that I could walk into the office tomorrow afternoon and feel nothing but joy and excitement for seeing the baby and finding out the sex. The other, bigger part of me is thankful to not be naive. If everything's not completely perfect, at least I won't be caught completely off-guard and I will have a strong support system of friends by my side. I am anxious about it. I had a little bit of a meltdown over the weekend because I was totally overwhelmed by fear. "My belly's not big enough." "I'm not growing right." "Nobody ever thinks something will be wrong." "I've taken too much Tylenol." "I haven't been drinking and eating right." UGH. But I just needed that hour or so to freak out and get it out of my system. I'm better now and not worrying about things like that; I have just anxiety about it in general. My past appointments at 6, 8, 12, and 16 weeks have been great and the baby and I got clean bills of health from the doctors, so really, I don't think I should expect anything different this time.
On the good side, man am I EXCITED to know what it is!!!! I'm really hoping the baby cooperates and we get a good angle to see the goods. I was told last time that in their practice they've only been wrong one time in seven years, so I have confidence in them. We've had a girl name picked out for almost two years, and a boy name for about three months. So we just need to know what it is, and then he or she will have a name! I can't wait to see it and be surprised by how much it's grown. I can't wait for it to have a name!!!!!! And you all will know what it is tomorrow!! Be sure to check back in, and thanks for reading today!!