Week 19 of Pregnancy
Your baby's skin now has a protective coating, while you might be hoping for something to protect you from painful leg cramps.
One minute you're lying peacefully in bed and the next your calf muscle feels like it's about to explode. Leg cramps during pregnancy are pretty common (though no one knows exactly what causes them) and tend to strike at night. You might also be wondering about tingling and numbness in your fingers and toes about now. It's a weird sensation but totally normal, probably a result of your body's swelling tissues pressing on nerves. And speaking of weird, have you ever seen a mango dipped in cheese? Well, that's what your baby looks like this week due to a little growth spurt (she's about a half pound in weight and six inches long) and a substance called vernix caseosa. This greasy white stuff covers your baby's skin, protecting it from the surrounding amniotic fluid. (Without it, she'd look totally wrinkled as she entered the world.) The vernix sheds as delivery approaches, though some babies still sport a bit of the coating at birth.
Week 19 Pregnancy Tip: Feeling Baby Kick
Your sister said she felt her baby kick by this point in her pregnancy, and so did your best friend — but so far, you haven't felt a thing. Except those gas bubbles this morning…but those were gas, weren't they? Maybe, maybe not. Those first tiny kicks can be felt many different ways — anywhere, on average, between week 18 and week 22 — as the merest flutter or the most insistent slug. Or as gas bubbles that aren't gas at all (that's how I felt it that first time — and for days I was sure it was just all the dried fruit I'd been eating). Some of it has to do with a mom's size (the thinner you are, the more likely you are to feel movements earlier), some of it has to do with her muscle tone (the laxer the uterine muscles, the easier it is to feel those kicks — which is why second-timers generally feel them sooner), some has to do with the baby's position (when the baby kicks facing in, it's more difficult to perceive the movements). A due date that's off can also throw off your recognizing that momentous first kick. Don't worry — there's no mistaking the real thing once your baby gets that technique down — and gets big enough to pack a serious punch.
I haven't had a chance to take a picture of my belly yet, but I will try and get one tonight to post on here tomorrow. It's definitely noticable now. The change from last week is pretty crazy!! There have been a couple times that I'm pretty sure I've felt the baby, but of course I just don't know for sure!