Pregnancy diary: week 17 – kicks kick-off & a cold

At the end of last week’s post, I mentioned that I could have included another word beginning with ‘M’ to go with the M-theme that last week had. Nobody was bold enough to comment with their guess of what this word could be. What I was thinking of was ‘movement’, because since last week I have definitely been able to feel baby moving around inside me. This is very exciting 🙂

Looking any bumpier? Maybe, though this is a more fitted top than last week's

I can’t remember exactly when I started to feel Andrew moving, but I think it was a couple of weeks later than this. I did read in a pregnancy guide that you tend to feel your second baby sooner than your first, though I’m not sure why that would be the case – maybe you just know what you’re expecting to feel, so you recognise it sooner? I do know that at first, with both Andrew and this baby, I wasn’t entirely sure if it was baby moving or just my digestive system, which was perfectly feasible given how my diet has been less than ideal with the sickness and nausea. Again this uncertainty and confusion with digestion is reported by other pregnant mums, so I’m not alone. But this time I’m now sure that it’s not just my inner bits but baby’s legs/arms that I can feel!

As yet I can’t say that there’s a distinct pattern of daily activity, for example baby could be quiet when I’m awake and moving around and kicking lots when I’m trying to rest/sleep. This is a fairly common pattern so I’ve heard, and it makes sense when you think about it: mum moving around creates a nice rocking movement that is conducive to baby falling asleep, and mum staying still is the perfect time for the little one’s arms and legs to stretch and feel around their environment. This is also one of the reasons ‘babywearing’ (i.e. carrying baby in a sling) is recommended in the early days – the closeness to mum’s tummy in a warm and cosy position whilst being naturally rocked by mum’s walking movements is like baby was used to in the womb.

I’m so glad that feeling baby kicks happened now, because otherwise it would have been a pretty rotten week of pregnancy. After starting this post with the ‘good’, I’ll move on to the ‘bad’. At the end of last week I got a sore throat and an annoying cough, and by Sunday evening it had turned into a horrible cold with runny and bunged up nose (how is that possible at the same time?!) and general aches and low energy. Just when I thought the sickness was on it’s way out, this has thrown me back somewhat. I’m sure it’ll pass, and normally I wouldn’t complain much about this sort of thing, but when you’re already feeling fragile, it seems ten times worse than a usual cold.

The most annoying and frustrating thing is not being able to take any real medication. I fall into that ‘not to be used when pregnant or breastfeeding’ instruction on the back of medicine packets, not just once but twice (still working on the nursling weaning thing…). I used to dose myself up when I got a cold, with things like a decongestant and paracetamol in the day and knock myself out with something that makes you drowsy to help me sleep through the coughing. I say ‘used to’ because I haven’t taken any medicines other than the odd bit of paracetamol for over 2 years now – wow that seems like ages when I put it like that – and thinking ahead, who knows how much longer it’ll be like this – seems even more like ages when I put it like that!! Thankfully my hayfever didn’t flare up as much the past two summers as in previous years, as that was my main concern about not being able to take medication.

So I’ve had to look for drug-free ways to help my symptoms and get through the day and night without driving myself (or Tom) mad! Handily I have a very good, free source of information on this – my local friendly pharmacists, who are great for advising on minor illnesses. In fact mine aren’t that local in a geographic sense, but they do let me get in touch out of hours. They are my parents 🙂 Basically the suggestions are: head over steamy bowl of water, hot drink of (lemon) squash, sucking boiled sweet for sore throat/cough. Oh and my mum always says red wine and chocolate can relieve most symptoms of any minor illness (probably just by making you feel happier!) – don’t fancy the wine, but I’ve given chocolate a bit of a go when the nausea is at its lowest in the day.

If we’ve had the ‘good’ and the ‘bad’, what about the ‘ugly’? I guess that has to be the insane amount of snot! Tissues are filling up our bins quicker than anything else at the moment. But…. there is an advantage to having a cold: changing Andrew’s nappy is a much less stinky job! On that more positive note, I’ll leave you until next week’s round-up.

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