October 19 2004 18:17 (+ 8 - 6 )
posted by (gen_here)

How your baby's growing: Head to heels, your baby now measures about 13 1/2 inches. His weight a pound and a half doesn't sound like much, but he's beginning to exchange his long, lean look for some baby fat. As he does, his wrinkled skin will begin to smooth out and he'll start to look more and more like a newborn. His hair is probably recognizable now (in color and texture), although both may change after he's born.

How your life's changing: Your baby's not the only one with more hair your locks may look more full and lustrous than ever. It's not that you're growing more hair, but the hair you'd normally shed is sticking around longer than usual. You may also notice darker or thicker body hair. It will return to normal in the weeks after you give birth. You probably can't move around as gracefully as before. It's fine to continue to exercise, but use your common sense: Don't work out when you're feeling overly tired, and stop if you feel any pain or when you begin to feel at all fatigued, dizzy, or short of breath. Don't lie on your back too long or do any exercise where you're apt to lose your balance. Be sure to drink plenty of water, and make time for both warm-up and cool-down periods.

When you have your glucose-screening test at 24 to 28 weeks, your practitioner may take a second tube of blood at the same time to check for anemia. Although your blood volume increases dramatically during pregnancy, the total amount of your red blood cells becomes diluted a problem sometimes called physiologic anemia that's common in the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. If your blood tests show that you have anemia, your caregiver will likely recommend that you take a supplement.

Have you started thinking about baby names yet? Choosing a name is an important decision, but it should be a fun one, too. Look to family history (Great Grandpa Zeb), favorite locations (Venice, where you honeymooned), or cherished literary or film characters (Greta, Meg, or Rhett, for example). Check out a couple of baby-name books to help you brainstorm, too.

Let's see...

Thicker hair - check
Less graceful (if you could call pre-pregnancy graceful) - check
Drink more water - check
Glucose screening... at 28 weeks - check

As far as anemia, I'm not so sure. I've always been anemic, but when I had my initial blood-work done, I wasn't. I've been eating lots of green veggies and the right amounts of meat, and I haven't been overly tired as of late, so I'm guessing it will be okay.

And we've thought of names. We have our girl's name picked out, and our boy's first name (we think)... we're still working on a middle name for "him." Okay - more like *which* middle name we like for him. It's pretty much guaranteed it won't be "Rhett," though. In fact, we joke that between not having the name settled and the pretty, pink crocheted dress from my mom... Wags is sure to be a boy =)

I also had my first serious Braxton Hicks contraction yesterday. It actually made me stop what I was doing for a second and took my breath away. Afterward, it felt like I had finished doing sit-ups for about a half hour. I've had minor ones before - that felt like the post sit-ups for a couple of minutes. But at least I know things are moving along now =)

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