20 weeks pregnant – My second scan is nothing short of amazing!

20 weeks pregnant
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Finally had my 20-week scan and, wow, it was nothing short of amazing!

Our little Boxer looked just like a teeny baby. We saw EVERYTHING – we saw the fingers, the toes, the heart, the spine and even the brain. The Sonographer measured the size of Boxer and reassured us that everything looked fine, which was a big weight off our shoulders.  We were so desperate to find out the sex of the baby, that both hubby and I were nervous and very, very excited. I know hubby secretly wanted a boy, but I didn’t mind so much, as long as the baby was healthy.  The lady turned to us and smiled:

“I can tell you the sex of the baby if you want to know now?”

Hubby and I had massive grins on our faces and both of us nodded vehemently.  

“It’s a BOY!”

Hubby whooped in the air and I just stared at the screen, grinning from ear to ear. Amazing! We had a feeling he was a boy as well.  I hadn’t felt pregnant before, but I definitely felt pregnant now after seeing our Boxer spinning around in my belly.  I’m glad that I got to see our baby boy as I was getting worried about not feeling him properly yet. All I felt were butterflies, but seeing Boxer again just made everything so real.

We decided to wait until the evening to call everyone spread the good news. A few of my friends and family were shocked that we actually found out the sex of the baby prenatally. I know that the choice is very personal, but why was it so shocking to them? We wanted to find out so we could prepare, i.e. buy specific clothes for a boy, decorate the nursery and get started on trying to find a name for our Boxer.

I get there are many reasons to wait too. My sister told me that with some families, it is probably best to not find out the sex of the baby as some families dislike having girls and knowing prenatally may lead to abortion of female foetuses. When I did a little bit of research on the net, I found that this was actually quite common in some areas.  I found this article on the internet, “UK Indian and Chinese women ‘aborting girls”. I couldn’t believe that these women were aborting their unborn daughters so they can have more boys. Have a read, it’s unbelievable!

I was now walking on cloud 9! I had visions of my baby boy Boxer running around and causing mayhem in our flat. I could not wait to see my baby now, I wanted to pregnancy to hurry up! Maybe it was the hormones, but I flit back and forth from feeling pure joy to worrying about every little thing, like whether I’d be a good mum. Or whether I would be able to protect Boxer from bugs and diseases. Would I know how to stop him from crying and how would I know when to feed him so he wouldn’t go hungry? Experienced mum kept telling me to just trust my instincts, but I didn’t have any. Would I give birth to these instincts the same time as my baby? I hope so!

A Fun fact – Your little baby is around 16cm from head to bottom and weighs about 340g. About the size of a beef tomato. Still so tiny!

The Science Part

Your baby at 20 weeks

  • Your baby is covered in a sticky substance called Vernix which protects their skin in the amniotic sac. It’s a bit like expensive body cream!
  • The genitals are now fully formed and you will be able to find out the gender at your scan
  • The most important organ, the brain, is developing quickly.
  • Your baby is very active stretching our their legs now!
  • Your baby has working taste buds now and gulping down quite a bit of amniotic fluid.
  • Your baby may be growing hair on their head now.
  • They can hear your heartbeat and other noises like music

Your pregnancy signs and symptoms

  • You are now halfway through your pregnancy!
  • Your uterus is now at the level of your belly button
  • Have you started to feel your baby’s movements yet?
  • The increased blood flow and hormonal changes is causing your gums to bleed and damage teeth. Make sure you are visiting the dentist regularly to combat this. Don’t forget you have free dental care up until your child is 1! – you just need to get an exemption certificate from your GP or midwife.
  • Are you experiencing pressure on your pelvis? To relieve pelvic pain, try to stay active, but avoid movements that may cause you any discomfort. Start sleeping on your side if you are not already, with a pillow tucked between your knees. I find maternity pillows that support both the tummy and back as well really comfortable.
  • You may see an increase in vaginal discharge which will continue to increase until delivery.
  • You may start to experience heartburn/indigestion as your baby starts to crowd your digestive system
  • Urinary tract infections are quite common. Try drinking cranberry juice and water throughout your pregnancy

Next steps

  • Be sure to eat lots of iron to support your baby and placenta.
  • Now is the time to start thinking about antenatal classes for you and your partner
  • If you haven’t developed stretch marks yet, now is the time to prevent or slow down the onset, by keeping the area moisturised. Don’t forget your breasts, legs and bum too!
  • Keep up with your stretches to avoid leg cramps and keep drinking plenty of water.

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.

Leyla Preston (590 Posts)

Leyla Preston is the owner and Editor of Motherhood Diaries global magazine for parents. Leyla is a busy mother of two even busier boys; Aron, 8, and Aidan, 7. When Leyla isn’t feeding, managing a gazillion tasks or cleaning the infinite mess at home, she is busy working on this magazine and a new cooking channel coming very soon – no rest for the wicked! You can follow Leyla on Twitter (@M_Diaries) or join the busy Motherhood Diaries Facebook group where all mums get together and share stories and solutions with one another: https://www.facebook.com//groups/motherhooddiaries/