15 Weeks: The Mouse, The Fish + The Rhino

The weeks sure do seem to be going faster these days! And that’s a very good thing to me. This week was the first one where I feel like my friends and family can really see my pregnancy from the outside:

15 weeks (7)

A stranger might not get it, but when I look at my reflection in the shop windows while walking to the gym, I sure look round!! I’ve mentioned it before, but posture really dictates these days and most of the time I’m just letting all my guts hang out! When I do that, I look really pregnant : )

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[Cropped maternity jeans from GAP!]

Based on my posture, and what I’ve had to eat, my stomach goes from flat to huge in an instant. It’s usually HUGE at night and when I wake up, when I’m on my side and with a full bladder. After going to the bathroom, it shrinks back down to nearly flat! Then after I eat breakfast, it’s back out again, and it’s usually hanging out from midday on.

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But even standing straight with good posture, you can see a small bump now. I always though pregnancy bumps were hard, but I’ve been surprised at how…mushy…my stomach still us! I guess it makes sense that any layer of fat you had before would stay on top, but, at least when I’m sitting down, everything’s all rolls and lumps. However, underneath that layer of fat and abs, my uterus has gotten really big and really hard! I can almost cup my hands around it and that is so cool!

I actually rolled onto my stomach in Pump this week and felt like there was a water balloon inside of me about to pop!! That will probably be the last time I lie on my stomach for months!

Can’t suck much in anymore…

15 weeks (4)

The Mouse

Perhaps the most exciting thing to note this week is that I’m able to feel the baby move! Those bubbles from a few weeks ago have turned into quite the mouse house in there. I can’t feel anything when I’m up and moving around, but if I lie down very still and concentrate, I can feel all kinds of movement. Sometimes it feels like a mouse scurrying around or tickling the walls of my uterus with its whiskers; other times it’s more like a vibration or light tapping. I’m 99% sure this is the baby, but it will be so exciting when I’m 100% sure and able to distinguish between kicks, rolls or see it from the outside!

The Fish

I’ve listened to the heartbeat a few times this week and boy is it LOUD! It’s also less of a whooshing and more of a traditional thumping heartbeat sound. The coolest part, though, is that if I put the monitor in one spot and get a very loud heartbeat, within seconds, it’s clear that the baby has swam away because the heartbeat gets fainter. I can’t exactly chase it around because I don’t know where it went, but the swimming concept is so very cute : ) Also, I can hear other noises in there – loud thumps – when I have the monitor’s headphones on that I’m pretty sure are the baby bumping itself or the walls of my uterus. Having this monitor has been such a special treat!

The Rhino

The rhino part of this post? I’m pretty sure I have rhinitis : ( That just means pregnancy congestion of the nasal passageways due to increased blood volume. My upper nose always feels stuffy and dry these days, and there’s not much I can do about it other than use a tissue multiple times a day to try to clear it out.

Also on the blood volume front, I definitely feel like I have more pumping through me. I’ve felt my heartbeat in weird places (like my uterus pulsating!) and I just feel…fuller all over. The blue veins on my chest are more pronounced too.

Another physical change I’ve noticed this week is clogged pores….on my body. I don’t want to call it acne because it’s not like big red blotches of blemishes, but it’s like little bumps…clogged pores… on my chest and shoulders! What an odd place to have a clogged pore. I have heard that in pregnancy the oil production of the skin increases (part of the “pregnancy glow”) so I’m guessing it’s related to that.


On the food front, I’m off my medicines!!! I definitely have moments of nausea (like right now, as I’m typing before lunch), but usually eating makes it go right away. I also think my stomach is filling up more quickly than before. I seem to get full faster and my “I can always eat!” attitude has diminished just a little. I no longer want dessert after dinner, which is weird.

I’m really into mini sandwiches with a side of fruit and salted almonds this week…

IMG_7388Blog IMG_7491

Still loving green smoothies in place of salads for lunch…


And the reintroduction of broccoli occurred!! Totally random.


I do think I’m hungrier than normal and before meals, especially dinner, I have a ravenous feeling. Insomnia is new this week and I’m wondering if hunger is to blame since all 3 times after I finally drank some juice I was able to fall back asleep. I didn’t really feel hungry, but I could tell I sort of was. I’m not counting calories or anything, but I wonder if I haven’t added enough to compensate for the second trimester 300 calorie increase since I’m eating pretty much like I used to these days. And as the bump starts to shoot out, I imaging the baby is going through a growth spurt as well! They say gain is about a pound a week in the second tri, and I’m not sure if I’m eating 3500 extra calories…yet.


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58 thoughts on “15 Weeks: The Mouse, The Fish + The Rhino”

  1. Oh, yay……on feeling that little one move. 🙂 It’s just the best feeling and you’ll never forget it.

    When you mentioned that you ate broccoli, it made me laugh because I just read in a recent post that you can’t eat it now. Yep, you’re definitely pregnant. (haha)

    Have your parents heard the heartbeat? If so, I bet that was really special for them. I’m sure they are really excited about this grandchild.

  2. I started snoring really loudly when I was pregnant. I think it was because of the rhino part of your post. It drove my husband crazy! That might be causing some of your insomnia? I’ve heard Breath Rite strips help. It also helped me to sleep under a humidifier. It helped my husband when I slept in the other room! 🙂

  3. Don’t worry – your belly will get hard as the pregnancy continues. I thought the same thing! Now at 33 weeks pregnant my tummy feels like a rock when pressing from the outside. I’m sure it will be giggly like jello after the baby comes though, ha.

    I noticed more pronounced veins on my chest and sides. The theory you mentioned makes sense to me. Love your updates!

    1. Yes, exactly. My stomach is hard as a rock now at about 34 wks. And then of course, it pokes out when my daughter contorts herself :).

      1. It might provide enough relief that it’s worth getting over the fear 🙂

        My worst nasal congestion was actually in the first 6-8 weeks postpartum, and it was so bad that my faithful Neti pot was of little use 🙁

  4. Just wait until you are further along! You’ll really start to notice the difference in the size of your bump from morning to night. I’m just over 23 weeks and lately I look 23 weeks in the morning and 30 weeks at night especially after drinking lots of water all day and after dinner. It’s crazy how big a difference 12 or so hours can make!

    As for the sinus congestion and clogged pores I experienced that as well but am happy to say that around 21 weeks my sinus congestion went away and the clogged pores have cleared up up a bit. I talked to my midwife and she basically said it won’t fully go away until the baby comes- oh well!

      1. I think they are all the same and it just comes down to personal preference on the shape of the part you put in your nose. The Neti-pot concept really freaked me out till I tried it when I had a miserable cold in week 26.

  5. I had such horrible sinus issues when I was pregnant (I had them before too so just imagine!!) Have you tried the Nettie Pot??? I also had the clogged pores…actually, they were more like red blotches that looked like clogged pores all over! No worries, all those weird “ailments” go away after birth!! lol!

      1. Kath,

        You can boil some water and keep it in a gallon bottle to use when needed. I bought the individual use “packets” of SinuCleanse at the pharmacy. You might only need to use it every few days. When I have a bad cold, it really helps.

  6. long-overdue first BERF comment!

    i finally felt like other people could tell at 15 weeks too!! i agree not strangers, but people who know you can appreciate the change. what you wear matters a TON at that point, too — josh used to laugh because i had one dress that advanced me about 10 weeks when i put it on (ha, wonder what it would look like NOW!!)

    was just thinking about the calorie part and my personal opinion is — just listen to your body 🙂 i was definitely hungriest in the 1st tri and now at the end of the road i will have SUPER hungry days interspersed with not-at-all ones. at this point, i’ve had about a 22 lb weight gain at 37 weeks and i’m assuming that’s just what my body wanted. also, i would imagine the 3500 kcal equation isn’t necessarily true in pregnancy either because some of that weight gain is just water that you will pee out at the end 🙂 or at least that’s what i hope will happen — ha!

    thinking of you!! have a fabulous weekend!

    1. Yes, the 3500 calories per pound dedinitely doesn’t work in pregnancy! Much of the weight is or should be increased blood volume, fluid, baby, etc…all stuff that happens due to pregnancy hormones regardless of how many cals you consume. Eat reasonably and when you’re hungry and you’ll gain the right amount. 🙂

      1. Absolutely! I’m proof of that. I’m at over 30 pounds heavier with still 4-6 weeks to go, and my diet has not changed that dramatically. I was also very slim to start. I truly think everyone’s body gains what it needs to gain, as long as you eat reasonably, which you certainly do. I got so worried about the weight gain, that I wasn’t fitting in the 25-35 pound recommendation and that’s just nonsense. Everyone’s body is different, whether they gain more than the average, or under it.

  7. The belly hardness thing is amazing. I had the same sort of belly you described…my fat over – hard uterus and I sort of figured it would be that way until the end. Not. Now that my uterus us pretty much up into my rib cage, the tops to middle section of my belly is hard when I wake up, and even harder by the end of the day. My lower abdomen is hard too…but with my normal layer of fat over it.

  8. I had horrible allergies during pregnancy, never had them before (i tried a variety of things humidifer, air filter), two sessions of accupuncture and they were gone!! My husband couldnt even believe it. Also, accupuncture will help you sleep, they can put a needle in so you can relax and nap during the session, they can also place needles in so you can sleep at night. I had wonderful deep sleeps during my pregnancy including at the end.

  9. I’m 23 weeks along and still have daily rhinitis. Benadryl has been a lifesaver and is totally safe during pregnancy. My OB said I could take it daily (and I do) and it really helps. I’ve tried the Neti Pot and the relief it gives me only lasts about 5 minutes 🙁

  10. Doesn’t it feel nice when other people you know start to notice the little round belly!?

    As far as the 3500 calories to gain a pound, I am not really sure that applies during pregnancy. One week I gained 2 pounds, and I certainly didn’t eat an extra 7000 calories!
    I’ve just learned to go with the weight gain, as long as my doctor thinks I am on the right track.

    1. I know, in the past two weeks I’ve gone up 4 pounds, and my eating has been the same, and I certainly haven’t eaten 14,000 extra calories! I can tell I’m retaining a lot of fluid, as is prone to happen to women in the last month or so, which is where I am now.

  11. How many weeks are you now? This is so confusing. Here you say you don’t want dessert but on KERF it seems you have sweets every day so I’m guessing you’re not caught up yet?

  12. Congrats for being off all your meds AND feeling the baby kick. Those first little movements and when you finally realize, ah-hah, that WAS actually a kick or a movement last week that I thought I maybe felt…yes, so awesome!

  13. Kath, so happy for you and Matt! Congratulations! So I was taught in nursing school that pregnant women should increase daily calories by 300, making a weekly increase of 2100 calories. Since a pound is 3500 calories but I always assumed the weekly 1-2 pound weight increase was made up of some fluid retention too. I was also taught (and dutifully memorized!) if a woman chose to breastfeed, her daily caloric needs would increase to 500 calories above her pre-pregnancy intake (so 3500 a week). However, I noticed you mentioned you aren’t (yet…) to 3500 a week and I’m wondering if that was a typo, joke or is the most recent recommendation RDs are making? Have there also been changes to caloric intake with breastfeeding to or is that the same? I’ve been out of school for awhile now and I know recommendations are always changing! Anyway, hope your nausea stays away and your rhinitis improves! Can’t wait to see baby KERF!

    1. No, it’s still 300 extra a day, which you’re right is 2100. I guess the extra pound must be from water – or blood volume – or something about metabolism of babies that I don’t quite understand!

      1. The weight gained during pregnancy is from increased blood volume, the placenta, breast tissue increase, breast milk production, and the baby. You only need an extra 300 calories a day to support the growth of the baby. Don’t eat more than that unless you want to gain more weight. This weight has nothing to do with increased caloric intake- so 3500 calories has nothing to do with the pounds gained in pregnancy. Well, it does if you go hog wild like a lot of my patients do! Just listen to your body, and you’ll be fine!

    2. You are right. An additional 1900-2500 calories per week is suggested, although not always needed. You absolutely do not need an extra 3500 calories per week. You do not want to gain a pound of *fat* every week. The pound you gain per week should be the growth of the fetus, increased fluid volume and a small amount of maternal fat stores.

  14. Ugh…clogged pores/acne. I’ve been battling mine for a few weeks now. It’s way worse than I had in high school, especially since they’re in weird spots like all over my back and shoulders. So icky! I’ve also noticed veins in my legs seem more pronounced.

    I finally tried on some maternity tops this week, and you’re right- they make you look pudgy without an obvious bump. So unflattering right now.

  15. My chest has clogged pores all over it, too! It’s so incredibly frustrating. And, total TMI, but along with that I swear there is a weird smell coming from them. I haven’t seen anything else on the internet about anyone experiencing the same thing (except ladies with big breasts who leak milk, which is not my case), but it never happened before pregnancy. My family swears I’m crazy and there is no smell, but for me, it’s totally there! I can’t even wear a bra because it intensifies the smell. Crazy skin changes! I found that running a cotton ball of Burt’s Bee’s acne toner stuff over it once a day makes the bumps less noticeable, you should give that a try!

  16. Another comment about the 3500 kcals…. that rough equation is based on what 1 pound of fat is worth in calories. However, during pregnancy you’re not gaining just fat, you’re gaining breasts, blood, a placenta, fat, and a baby! So you can’t really use that equivalent anymore to judge calories….

  17. You’ve definitely got the beginnings of a cute little bump! It’s so fun to read all you are learning and experiencing in this pregnancy. I just had my second baby 6 weeks ago, and I had forgotten about a lot of the excitement and learning that comes with the first pregnancy, so it’s fun to be reminded of those things and reminisce a little. 🙂

  18. For the nasal congestion/dryness (which for me lasted the whole time) I highly recommend saline nasal gel – there’s a brand called Ayr which I liked. You just rub a little inside your nose with finger or Q-tip and it keeps it moist enough to breathe more easily. It’s just saline so you can use it as often as you need to.

  19. My belly does the same thing…goes from a little bump to full on baby bump depending on the time of day or whether I’ve eaten! Have any random people asked you if you are pregnant yet? At 17 weeks, I got my first comment yesterday, and it was really fun to share the news 🙂

  20. I could always feel the baby move REALLY well when I was lying in a full bathtub! You can actually watch your belly move later. Very weird laying in the water and seeing a foot or hand sweeping across your belly like a moving lump 🙂

  21. Oh my gosh – I’m SO GLAD you said the thing about having a mushy stomach too. I totally thought the same thing, I guess I figured your stomach got hard right away when you’re pregnant – apparently that’s not the case! I feel like my bump is smaller in the mornings too and huge after I eat!

  22. Kath!

    I love following your posts. I’m not too far behind you. I will be 15 weeks monday 🙂

    Curious…. what kind of fetal doppler did you get? Are you renting or did you buy?

  23. Did you confirm as time went on that what you were feeling is week 15 was in fact the baby moving? I am 16 weeks and don’t think I’ve felt anything yet… And I’m getting impatient! ; )

    When I lie still and concentrate I feel *something* – but it’s hard to tell since my breathing and pulse get in the way! I think it may just be my own heartbeat sometimes. Frustrating. I can’t wait!


    1. It’s hard to confirm because it only got stronger, but yes, I think I was feeling that little swimmer in there!

  24. I know it’s been ages since you wrote this post, sorry! I’m just now at this point in my pregnancy and I don’t like to read ahead. 😉 What did you put in your green smoothies? Finally starting to want veggies again, but sometimes it’s still hard to make them palatable.

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