Pregnancy Diary: Week 18 | Birthdays & hearing heartbeats

18 weeks pregnancy diary

This week was really just adjusting back to normal life after returning from our honeymoon, but luckily we’d had something to look forward to: the 16 week midwife appointment, which, yes, happened at 18 weeks thanks to the timing of our trip! This time I saw a different community midwife who took me through my results from my last bloods (all good!), talked through the growth chart that we’ll start at around 28 weeks, and, most excitingly, she showed me the heartbeat! We hadn’t had a chance to hear the heartbeat yet; I’d kind of hoped they’d do it at this appointment but I’d heard they didn’t always, so I didn’t have my hopes up, so that was super exciting! Unfortunately Ben’s not attending midwife appointments, only scans because it’s a lot of time off work otherwise, so he didn’t get to hear it then.

Mickey Mouse pyjamas - 18 week pregnancy diary

That evening, I went to out for a Thai meal with my friends Rosie and Helen for our birthdays – we’re all in September and October, so it’s a good excuse to get together and exchange gifts. This year, they grouped together to get me a joint present of two pyjama sets – the Mickey Mouse ones pictured here, which are my new favourites, and a big Mickey nightie that they bought in a bigger size so I can wear it in hospital and afterwards.

That weekend was my birthday – as Charley put it, the last one before being a mummy forever! We celebrated by going out for a meal at a local pub with my family on Saturday evening, and I received some lovely gifts! Ben got me a proper “grown up” handbag, my parents gifted us the money to cover a hypnobirthing course, a bonsai tree, a Mother and Baby set from Neal’s Yard and some other bits and pieces, and my sister got me a gorgeous pink maternity jumper that had been on my wishlist!

See more of my pregnancy diary posts here or check out the whole thing:

We were also out for a meal on Sunday with Ben’s family to celebrate his uncle’s birthday – busy time of year! We’re now doing these get-togethers with Ben’s close family – ie. his uncle, aunt and young cousins, grandma, grandad, great aunt, his mum, dad, sister and sister’s boyfriend – more frequently which is really lovely. We always end up going back to his great aunt’s house where we get more food, play with William and Lydia (Ben’s cousins), and spend a few hours all talking over each other!

Tomato salad lunch - 18 weeks pregnant

On Monday I booked our hypnobirthing classes. I’m super excited for these, and I’m also looking at doing some online classes too in addition to the ones we’re taking locally. I imagine I’ll be talking a lot about hypnobirthing in future, so I’ll save that for now. I also went to the library on my lunch break and picked up two pregnancy books, one on hypnobirthing (Your Baby, Your Birth by Hollie de Cruz), the other on pregnancy and birth in general (How to Grow a Baby and Push It Out by Clemmie Hooper).

Tuesday was a normal work day, but Fran came with my birthday present in the evening and part of this was foam shrimps (or lobsters, from M&S) and they were THE BEST. Excellent choice, Frannel!
That night, baby was kicking around while I was laying in bed and I told Ben he might finally be able to feel it – he put his hand on my tummy for a minute then said, “Wait, was that it then?!” at the same time I felt that now slightly familiar bump inside – it was!!

I’ve been waking up feeling a bump in the last week or so which is different as my tummy generally felt as flat as normal in the morning up until now (ie. not completely flat, but not bumpy!) – it hasn’t generally been until later in the day, particularly evening, when bump has been most apparent. On Wednesday morning in particular, I realised that turning from my side to my back makes baby kick and shuffle around like crazy, maybe waking up?! I’ve noticed this happening a lot of mornings but hadn’t connected it to the turning over until now!
I’m trying REALLY hard to stay on my side while I sleep, particularly my left side as I’ve seen that recommended basically everywhere, but I’m ending up finding myself lying flat out on my back a lot – annoyingly because I don’t often sleep on my back! I still haven’t bought that pregnancy pillow, but I’m doing alright with one giant pillow I’ve discovered at home at the moment between my knees and alongside my body when I’m lying on my side, so that’s a positive. I’m planning to see whether I’ll actually need the pregnancy pillow or not because I’m worried I’ll get hot and bothered wrapped up in a big pillow!

In other news, I noticed my weight was back up to pre-pregnancy which made me feel happy about gaining weight for the first time in my life! I’d been quite worried about this, but I think all the walking in Florida and Lake Placid made it certain that the calories I was eating (and there were a lot of them!) were getting burnt off very quickly. I know I lost weight early on because my appetite was absolutely broken and I felt sick a lot, but now my appetite’s back, I’m looking forward to seeing some (not too much though!) weight going on!

And final random news, I watched Bridget Jones’ Baby and realised that they don’t put any of the “fun” (ie. realistic) early pregnancy stuff in there. I wish they would!

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