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Week 5

Feb22

by

Weekly Pregnancy Calendar on Alphamom.com

Your baby:

  • Is about the size of a sesame seed.
  • Looks more like a tadpole than a human-variety baby.
  • Making developmental leaps and bounds by the hour like a damned GENIUS CHILD.

You:

  • Are totally for-real pregnant, with a positive home pregnancy test to prove it and everything.
  • Are definitely popping a prenatal vitamin everyday — you can pick them up at any grocery store or vitamin shop. Your doctor can also write you a prescription, but if your insurance doesn’t cover them it’s perfectly fine to buy them off the shelf.
  • If you don’t FEEL very pregnant yet, don’t panic. It’s early. Breast tenderness and fatigue may be all you’ve got at this point.
  • Oh, and yes, it is time to stop smoking, drinking, doing drugs and licking inner-city mailboxes, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Operation Chill Out hit its first major obstacle this week in the form of cramping. Lots and lots of cramping. Now, I do remember some cramping last time — right before I found out I was pregnant, actually, because I distinctly remember deciding to NOT take a pregnancy test after I missed my period, since the cramping told me it must be imminent. But this week was different, since I could clearly tie the cramping to activities, like running errands or picking up my toddler or just WALKING TO THE BATHROOM. The pain shot through my abdomen and around my back and I swear I could feel it around my pubic bone at times. I took to the couch with a ginormous bottle of water (dehydration can cause uterine cramping) and tried to stay put for as long as possible.

My husband finally handed me the phone and ordered me to call the doctor — my first prenatal appointment isn’t for another few weeks and he was not happy about that. My doctor told me everything I already knew: drink plenty of water, rest, and relax. If there’s no bleeding, cramping is usually completely normal. But…come in for a quick ultrasound anyway.

At five weeks and change, your baby is about a millimeter long. That’s incredibly tiny and hard to see with even the best ultrasound equipment. This is not to say that there isn’t stuff there — the early shapes of a head and torso and the teensiest little limb-buds are starting to form, along with internal organs and the chambers of the heart. By next week, that little heart will be a visible flickering pixel on a sonogram, but right now it’s all just too small to see.

My ultrasound this week confirmed that I was carrying a single appropriately-sized embryo — appropriate for a five-week-old pregnancy, meaning the baby itself was about three weeks old. And it ruled out the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy. (Where the embryo implants anywhere other than the uterine wall, like in a fallopian tube or down on the cervix or even IN an ovary.) Cramping and abdominal pain can be a symptom of an ectopic pregnancy, but like all other Bad Things, it is usually accompanied by bleeding.

Then again, some spotting is completely normal and harmless. It can be a stray clot, a urinary tract infection, or just one of those weird things that happens. You just don’t always know. Welcome to pregnancy! And…parenthood, actually. Now that I think about it.

(Now that we’re in the realm of actual can-be-documented stuff about
pregnancy, I’ll be including a couple things each week comparing my
first and second pregnancy. “Oh Yeah, THIS” will be the stuff I went
through the first time but repressed forgot about,
and “New This Time Around” will cover all the stuff that makes my
current pregnancy a unique and special little snowflake.)

Oh Yeah, THIS: Bloating! Dude. Duuuuude. The first time around I (wrongly) assumed that I started showing ridiculously early, and no lie, I LOOK like I’m showing already. My pants don’t fit and I have a round poochy belly that I cannot suck in. But of course, my uterus is still tiny. I am bloated. Am balloon. Am walking around with my pants undone, affectionately rubbing my little gas-baby and there’s just nothing to be done about it. Thank heavens for the Bella Band.

New This Time Around: Well, the frequent and painful cramping, obviously. I’ve since read all about the round ligament pain that plagues a lot of second pregnancies, and also how uterine scarring — be it from endometriosis or previous D&Cs or c-sections — can also exacerbate the cramping. I also went to the price club and purchased a giant pallet of bottled water and keep one with me CONSTANTLY. Staying hydrated has definitely helped, even if I am also dashing to the bathroom CONSTANTLY. A full, pressing bladder is infinitely more preferable to the sensation that my uterus is about to expel its precious cargo.

About the author

Amalah

http://www.amalah.com
Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy's daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it's pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to amyadvice@gmail.com.

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.


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30 Responses to “Week 5”

  1. jodifur Feb 27 at 5:58 pm Reply Reply

    I’m just excited someone else calls Costco Price club.
    Carry on, pregnant people.

  2. Bethiclaus Feb 28 at 9:33 am Reply Reply

    I had more intense ligament pain with baby #2. Am textbook pregnant woman. Also, seven weeks post-partum and still have bloaty gas baby. Sexy.

  3. selzach Feb 28 at 12:41 pm Reply Reply

    I’ve had much more cramping with this (my second pregnancy). I ended up calling the OB at some point around 4-6 weeks and she said it’s very common. The cramping has tapered off, but I still have some very uncomfortable days. The tiredness during my first trimester was awful. I could barely function in the evenings.

  4. tara Mar 04 at 10:53 pm Reply Reply

    hey there. long time somewhat-lurker from amalah who fears the post button and will worry that what i wrote is stupid in about 10 seconds.
    just wanted to say that i’m so glad that you are writing this and if all continues to go well, i’ll be just a few weeks behind you. i’ve been stressing all day, worrying that i’m cramping for all the wrong reasons and you’ve made me feel better. thanks :)

  5. Lindsay Jul 16 at 4:23 pm Reply Reply

    I am newly pregnant and LOVING reading your blog. I, too am experiencing the “gas baby” and thinking that I might be crazy to think that this sesame seed sized baby can make my pants too tight! Thanks for making me feel better! :)

  6. Tracy Jul 22 at 10:05 pm Reply Reply

    Ok, Like…15 or 20 weeks ago or whatever, however long ago it was that you announced you were writing this blog…I was all “hmmm. That’s interesting.” And I checked it once or twice and went on with life. NOW…five weeks pregnant…I am SOOOOOOOOOO happy you wrote this! I’ve spent the last 24 hours freaking out about all the cramping I was doing yesterday, and the very SLIGHT bit of spotting I had…and now I know it’s normal (despite what Dr. Google told me.) Yay.
    Thanks, Amy.

  7. Brittany Aug 15 at 6:23 pm Reply Reply

    whew! Thank goodness! I had zero cramping with baby #1, now I am prego with #2 and I could swear I am getting ready to have a period my cramps are killer!!! I was worried it was not normal and you have squashed my fears hooray! ps I got through advanced college calculus with flying colors…….yet pregnancy math completely stumps me!!!

  8. Andee Sep 10 at 11:34 pm Reply Reply

    I laughed out loud at the gas-baby! Was just saying to a friend tonight that I was wondering if I was further along than I thought because even my maternity pants are uncomfortable!!! This is baby number 3 and just like my last pregnancy, this one confirms that no two experiences are the same. Happy I found this! Thanks!

  9. Lucy Oct 01 at 4:26 pm Reply Reply

    I know this is totally hella late, but I start my fifth week tomorrow and I am SO THERE with you on the cramping! I’ve had endometriosis for years (4 surgeries for it) so I guess that’s why it’s so dramatic for me.
    Also, I do not have a gas baby, but I do have a water baby. For serial. I’m so damn thirsty all the time that I feel like my eyeballs are floating.

  10. Jenn Oct 03 at 12:39 pm Reply Reply

    Gas Baby: check, frequent peeing: check,
    nausea: check , but my boobs have only expanded (Thank God, also my first pregnancy clue this time around)
    I love your blog and it’s so nice to hear these things from a real pregnant woman not a man(the authors of most prego books)

  11. miriam Oct 23 at 8:01 pm Reply Reply

    I also had the cramping that made me think “damn. I’m just fat” 2 days out from when I should have had my period. Fortunately, I continued with the period not-having, and it turns out that I’m just really pregnant and bloaty. And fat. So glad I read this and got the bella band early (but now I think I might need a larger size).

  12. Michelle Nov 07 at 1:30 am Reply Reply

    Haha. I NEEDED to read this site. My friend who is 8 months along directed me here and I’m so glad she did. :D

  13. Ash Dec 23 at 4:50 pm Reply Reply

    I just found out this weekend that I’m pregnant. I’m about five weeks along and don’t have my first appointment for another month. I’ve really enjoyed reading this blog and looking forward to the coming weeks! I feel better after reading why I’m getting these annoying cramps and why my jeans aren’t being very cooperative. I have this sort of vague queasiness where I don’t want to eat anything ever again and yet I am ravenously hungry and want to eat everything in my house, furniture included. And if I go pee one more time in my day I’m just going to set up camp in there! It never ends! Thanks for a great blog!

  14. Candace Feb 23 at 8:53 am Reply Reply

    This is amazing! I found I was pregnant 2 days ago, well sort of, I took me taking 4 pregnancy tests over the course of 2 days to consider this real, because of the cramping! I thought for sure I was going to start my period. But no blood no nothing and this morning, I have a little queasiness. Trying to drink water but it is just plain nasty, so for now I am sticking to some sugar free kool aid, alternating with water. I was ravenous yesterday though, and ate everything in sight! This is so odd, and I swear I still don’t really feel pregnant.
    Thank you for a great blog! I bought WTEWYE, yesterday and that was interesting but this is hilarious and reassuring. I can’t thank you enough :)

  15. Holly Apr 03 at 4:41 pm Reply Reply

    I am enjoying your blog! I had my first possitive HPT almost two weeks ago (in two days week 6 will start). I say first because I had to take a few to make sure it was real. The cramping really threw me off – I was sure it was PMS. It sucks to have to wait so long to see the Dr. and get the ultrasound, but I’m trying my best to be patient.
    My first tip of possible pregnancy was constipation (that never happens to me) and the single dark brown spot on my undies. Fortunately I tested positive right away on my 28th day so I didn’t have to deal with false negatives. I had been trying for six months, so it was a glorious/surreal day!!
    Ash totally hit the nail on the head for me with the subtle queasiness and loss of appetite combined with feeling like I’m starving all the time. Makes finding something you really desire to eat a challenge!
    Is anyone else afraid to get too excited yet? I feel bad that I”m not jumping off the walls about it, but part of me is afraid to get too excited ’til we hear the heartbeat or the first trimester is over. I think I’ve heard too many bad stories….

  16. Amy M Aug 01 at 7:03 pm Reply Reply

    according to my dr i am 5 1/2 weeks pg but will get an ultrasound next friday to see if she still agrees with that and the estimated due date she gave me yesterday.
    to Holly: that’s exactly how i feel.
    lots of cramping coming and going and wow the constipation. and the gas baby? i has it. it’s not fun. considering amalah tells me the millimeter long embryo isn’t the source. i kinda knew that though! i have known about this calendar for a while but saved it until i was pg. i’m so glad i did. thank you Amalah!!!

  17. Melissa Sep 14 at 10:32 am Reply Reply

    I am so glad to read this! I tested yesterday – two days before my expected period – and got a positive result! Two more tests confirm that I am pregnant. Of course, I don’t believe it. But the cramping! Thanks all for making me feel okay about this, considering my first appointment is not for another 4 weeks. I am so thankful for this blog!

  18. Cara Oct 25 at 6:18 pm Reply Reply

    Thank you, ladies, for assuring me the cramping-that-feels-like-PMS does not mean the HPT was wrong. I took the first test Friday night, so I can’t even call my doctor until Monday. We’ve been trying for 2 years, and I really want this pregnancy to be real.

  19. Candace Mar 24 at 2:12 pm Reply Reply

    Hey! I posted last year on February 23, when I found out I was pregnant with my little boy Carson. And now I am posting again, because yep, got a positive pregnancy test last night. Got a blood test this morning. Totally NOT planned but really excited! Woo!
    _______________
    Editor: Congratulations!

  20. Jackie May 18 at 8:58 pm Reply Reply

    I’m so glad I found this site! Congrats everyone on the wonderful news! I am 5.5 weeks pregnant- found out 2 weeks ago, 9 DPO. I conceived using clomid due to PCOS, and have my first ultrasound in 3 days. I too was worried about the cramping (had it since implantation), but this site has made me feel so much better. I told my doctor about it last week, and they said its normal as long as it doesn’t get worse in terms of pain. I also have the bloating with constipation and look like I am 3 months pregnant and don’t fit into any of my clothes! I haven’t felt morning sickness yet, thankfully. Look forward to reading the upcoming weeks :)

  21. Suzie May 23 at 1:45 pm Reply Reply

    This is awesome!! I am not pregnant, and do not plan on getting pregnant anytime soon, but I’ve always been scared of having children just because everyone who has gone through it always talks about the bad, the bloody, scary, crappy parts, and not the fun exciting parts. They called it a form of birth control (when I was in high school) scare me into not having sex. But now that I’m engaged and about to start my life, I still feel the way I felt in high school… not excited to have kids, but now everyone is like “Yay! Babies” And I’m like “yeah right”. But this helped me feel differently on having kids. Especially the relax and enjoy blog. I am a worrier, so thank you for saying what you said about miscarriages and being scared of hurting your baby. It makes sense. You also looked at having babies and being pregnant as it being fun and not just the scary process before pushing the watermelon out your vagina. I don’t know why women don’t say this kind of stuff enough! It would make the younger generations mind more at ease and more wanting to have children. :) So thank you. You made me actually get excited about having children in the future! Very positive out look!

  22. Megan Jun 19 at 12:00 pm Reply Reply

    Found this site on Pinterest about the time I was ovulating…scoured the first couple weeks of posts over and over starting at 5 DPO, I have had the sore boobs, gas baby, crampy icky OMG I’M SO TIRED WHY CAN’T I SLEEP AND WHY MUST I KEEP PEEING almost from the beginning (not all at once until week after I got my positive test). I totally had myself psyched into following your advice and waiting to take my test until several days after I missed my period but after three sleepless nights in which I get up to pee (which I never do!) I took and got a resounding positive on day 27 (I usually have 26 day cycles sooooo technically that was not even late yet). Now I feel embarrassed because this is only my first and I feel crampy (everyone else who complains of this seems to be on second or third baby?) and I already bought maternity clothes because I can’t stand tight on me right now (see gas baby). Now today at 5w 3d and I have been feeling that whole queasy but I want to eat thing for a week. Bleh. Thank you for helping me feel like I’m not crazy.

  23. Lynette A Jul 26 at 12:51 pm Reply Reply

    Thank you so much for this.  You said exactly how I have been feeling!  PS…is it weird that I won’t be seeing the doctor until week 10?

  24. christina Nov 11 at 3:11 pm Reply Reply

    Found your blog a few months ago and even though I read it then I couldn’t wait to follow along once I got pregnant, and now I am!! Such a roller coaster ride but glad to have your humor to help me through!

  25. jingelbells Jan 14 at 3:21 am Reply Reply

    Hi! I hope somebody could help me. I think im 5 wks along and had already stopped with the cramping. BuT yesterday and today i have very light brown discharge on my undies. It’s not continuous and i doesnt hurt anywhere. I went to my ob last fri & she did a transvi on me…

    Do i need to go to the dr now or this spotting is normal? Am i miscarriaging? Pls help :(

  26. Rachel Mar 06 at 1:28 pm Reply Reply

    Thank you so much for this blog. I am 5 wks 4 days with my 2nd pregnancy and I have been experiencing light cramping off and on for the past few days. I don’t remember getting this with my first. Definitely freaked me out, but I have found lots of reassurance online that it is completely normal! Love your humor in these posts! It’s nice being just a bit behind your pregnancy so I can look ahead and see what may be coming my way soon!

  27. Jessica Mar 16 at 6:25 pm Reply Reply

    I have been making fun of myself for rubbing my ‘gas baby’ between weeks 4 and 5 five of my 2nd pregnancy. I am soo glad that I am not alone!

  28. Maureen Muoneke Mar 18 at 6:38 am Reply Reply

    Your baby is still tiny, but its heart, brain, spinal cord, muscle, and bones are beginning to develop. The placenta, which nourishes your baby, and the amniotic sac, which provides a warm and safe environment where your baby can move easily, are still forming, too. The umbilical cord forms and connects your baby to your blood supply.

  29. Melissa Jun 11 at 11:30 pm Reply Reply

    This is an awesome blog!  I am just now 5 weeks pregnant (well tomorrow).  This is my second pregnancy after a miscarriage last year.  Your humor puts a great spin on things that can be kinda scary  in this early stage.  I have to laugh being able to relate to the whole rubbing the gas baby and boob smashing as a way to convince yourself you are still pregnant (week 4).  And I have become a sobbing mess!  I’m just so thankful after 14 months of trying I am getting to experience this all over again-even the “Honey, we gotta pull over, I”m going to be sick!!!” experience!

  30. Melanie Sep 05 at 3:23 pm Reply Reply

    Just found your blog while browsing pinterest, and read week 1 to 5 – you are hilarious! Thanks for putting in the fun factor into the stressfull time :)

    I am into my 5th week (2nd pregnancy) and have been having terrible cramps (no other side effects) therefore I was quite pleased to read your input on the subject and shall take your advise and RELAX as well as add a couple more drinks of water to my day

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