Robyn Wilder's having another baby! And she's writing about her pregnancy for Mush every couple of weeks. Here's the second instalment, in which, according to our friends at Babycentre, her unborn child is roughly the size of a bell pepper. So, how is pregnancy different second time round? Apart from having a toddler balancing on her bump...
One of the main things I was looking forward to, this time around, was just not being a novice. Being one of those zen, unflappable, seen-it-all-before mums, rather than a panicked first-timer ringing the doctor at every twinge (I’m not saying that’s all first-time mums; it was just how I was). But - and I realise this may be news - it turns out not all pregnancies are the same. My symptoms are very different this time around, which is why I’m almost convinced I’m having a girl this time. I will almost certainly be proved wrong in this. Other differences include...
1. I popped way too early, way too much
I am a small, curvy, plumpish lady, in a pleasing Hobbit-maiden kind of way, so with my first pregnancy people on the Tube weren’t sure whether to give me a seat right up until I was about six months gone. This time, however, I’ve popped early. At the time of writing I am about 18 weeks pregnant, and I’d say, at a rough guess, I look about… 103 weeks pregnant? I ballooned almost as soon as I took the pregnancy test - but it’s only recently that my belly has begun to feel full firm. Recently, at a family do, one of my husband’s favourite aunties rushed up, squealing, to touch the bump - and then visibly recoiled when my stomach turned out to be jellyish and full of pizza. Sorry, Auntie Jackie.
2. I couldn’t go to bed for the first trimester because I have a toddler
Last time, the pregnancy gods chose to visit upon me hyperemesis gravidarum (severe morning sickness), anaemia, gestational diabetes, a busted coccyx, and a broken rib. However, I did get signed off work and get to hide under a duvet when things got bad. With this pregnancy I’m freelance, so can’t take a sick day, and I have a toddler I have to constantly chase about, bucket in hand. I won’t lie; the first 12 weeks were grim, but the sickness - which isn’t as bad as last time at all - is starting to abate, and my energy is returning.
3. I know other pregnant women
I was the first in my circle of friends to get babified last time, I moved area in my third trimester, and I didn’t do NCT, so I was basically on my own. Now I have a troop of mum friends at similar stages in their lives - and more importantly, I know people who have new babies and haven’t completely fallen apart, which gives me a lot of hope.
4. I have no idea what fruit or vegetable my foetus is this week (editor's note: it's a pepper. See above).
Who has time for foetal development apps when you have a toddler who has suddenly decided he must know what is at the top of every ladder in the world, at all costs?
5. I’m googling a lot less
Look, everybody calm down. I know what those pains in my abdomen are (round ligament pain). I know why my face has exploded in freckles and why I need the loo every five minutes. I don’t need to freak out and google everything, because I’ve been through all of this before! Oh blimey, maybe I am one of those women after all.
Mush brings you anecdotal and light-hearted guides on what you can expect when pregnant and in the early years of your child's life. For more official advice and newsletters detailing your baby's development, both before and after birth, we recommend signing up to Babycentre.