14 weeks pregnant – The fatigue is getting to me
I attended a friend’s birthday on Saturday, which involved some “light” lunch at a really busy pub, and watching England v USA in the world cup. I felt really uncomfortable as I wasn’t able to sit in one place for too long, but the pub was crammed with people and the toilets were quite far away. I still had to endure that horrible taste in my mouth after lunch, so I resorted to water for the rest of the night (after drinking one too many pineapple juices).
By the end of the match, I felt physically and emotionally drained. As I walked home with hubby, I burst into tears. I think it was due to pregnancy fatigue and hormones, but I kept thinking, “Is this it for me and my social life now?” I felt like I wasn’t ready to give up my youth just yet and that made me cry even more. On top of that, I had a really bad headache, which I put down to the excessive crying. Hubby reassured me that I was going to be a great mum and that I could enjoy going out properly after the baby was born. Nevertheless, I got home and crashed out for about twelve hours. Plus, I really needed the energy as I had another birthday to go to the next day. Thankfully this birthday was for only a couple of hours.
Getting up on Monday morning was a nightmare. I couldn’t open my eyes at work all day and I walked around like a zombie. I couldn’t believe Saturday night had drained me so much, so I made a mental note to put my social life on hold until after I’d given birth. Getting home was also torturous. Everyone at Green Park tube station were like vipers trying to get onto the same tube. I got pushed back and forth, and at one point, someone accidentally pushed my belly. It wasn’t hard, but I jumped at him and told him to, “Stop standing on top of me. I’m a pregnant lady!” What made it worse was that I was desperate to go to the loo, even though I’d just been before I had left work. A really nice lady heard me and ushered me to the front of the carriage. Until I got off the train she made sure no one pushed me, which was really sweet of her. On the way home, I was secretly worried about whether there was any damage as I felt a few cramps afterwards… The next day I asked work if I could change my hours, so I wouldn’t have to deal with that rush hour again.
I also needed to start getting some maternity clothes as nothing fitted me anymore. After work, I looked around some of the shops to see if anything caught my eye. New Look, Next and H&M had some nice clothes which didn’t look too frumpy. It was also getting warmer outside, so I was looking for some decent maxi dresses that would cover my ever-growing bump. I couldn’t find any dresses that I liked so I found some stretchy black trousers from New Look for work, which was really comfortable, and a couple of loose-fitting tops from H&M. I found going to the nearest car boot sale at the weekend a bonus too. So much stuff is given away for next to nothing, so hubby and I went a bit nuts the weekend before and bought two bags full of baby clothes!
Hubby was scheduled to play squash with his friends in the evening, so I had decided that when I got home, I would sit in front of the sofa, watch Friends and The Simpsons, and stuff my face with hubby’s pre-made fajitas – Yay! I kept getting really hungry, stuffing my face, then paying the price afterwards with that horrible taste in my mouth and a stomach that felt like it was going to explode. I needed to remember to eat small meals slowly as, before the pregnancy, I used to inhale large quantities of food, so the habit was hard to break. I kept getting back pain in the right-hand side of my back, under my ribs. I couldn’t work out whether it was back pain or wind, but if it was back pain, then it might have had something to do with the size of my boobs! They had definitely grown a size, so I had to factor in shopping for bras as well. This pregnancy lark was expensive!
A fun fact – The baby is about 8cm long and weighs about 40g! About the size of a lemon!
The Science Part
Your baby at 14 weeks
- Your little one has doubled its weight since last week and looks like a tiny little person.
- Your baby will be covered in hair called lanugo which is temporary and its aim is to keep your baby warm in your tummy
- Your baby is using all of your protein to help build strong muscles
- Your baby is moving its knees and elbows giving him/her a much greater range of motion.
- And your baby will be doing all sorts of spins and somersaults in your belly now and can even stand up in your womb!
- Your baby’s pancreas and liver are producing fluids now
- Your baby is getting all their food and oxygen from the placenta via the umbilical cord so make sure you feed them nice healthy and delicious food!
Your pregnancy signs and symptoms
- You may be starting to experience an increase in appetite
- Your nausea/morning sickness should be subsiding now
- If you’re still experiencing morning sickness, then try eating small amounts of plain food throughout the day to keep your energy up. Potatoes and cereal are good because they are bland. I swore by ginger biscuits in all three of my pregnancies so try those too!
- You may start to experience heartburn due to your slower than normal digestive system. Try eating fresh fruit and vegetables to combat the digestion
- Fresh fruit and veg also provide that much-needed fibre if you are experiencing constipation too!
- Are you starting to experience round ligament pain?
- Make sure you’re eating a range of food packed with vitamins and minerals to stay healthy and regular.
- Have you started to experience pregnancy brain yet? Apparently, studies have shown that ‘baby brain’ is down to you using one part of your brain during pregnancy more as you prepare to bond with your baby.
- Your uterus is growing continually and will be the size of a peach now.
Your next steps
- Keep up with your dental health and brush well twice a day. Make sure to floss regularly too
- Stay active now to increase your health and stay regular. Regular exercise has been known to combat constipation as well.
- Have you decided to tell your friends and family yet? Or are you holding on a bit more to your secret?
- Have you told work that you’re expecting yet?
- Do you know what your maternity rights and benefits are?
- You should have had your nuchal scan where the sonographer tested your baby’s measurements and the amount of spinal fluid at the back of their head.
- From now on you will be asked to supply urine samples to check for conditions such as pre-eclampsia and gestational diabetes.
- You may have been given your own personal growth chart too and had extra blood tests to test for disorders like Patau’s and Down’s Syndrome
Note: These are just general ideas of how you and your baby are getting on. Don’t forget that every baby develops differently. If you are concerned about your baby’s development, please consult your doctor or midwife.
*Illustrations by Charlotte Watkins.
If you have any questions about her work, please contact Charlotte via her website, Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn*