A Northern Pregnancy

The Second Trimester

I had high expectations coming into the second trimester. I thought it would be like waking up from a bad dream and riding a magical unicorn into being active and motivated … not so much, but still better than the first three months!

Month 4

We officially announced our baby to the world, and the freedom and relief was great. I loved being able to talk with other mothers and share the fact that pregnancy really does suck.

The stress of waiting on genetic testing was excruciating. Did you know they measure the baby’s DNA in my blood? Yes, my “parasite” has, in fact, infected every part of me, and I’m sure this is some biological requirement so we don’t eat our young. But, either way, the Harmony Test is free to those over 35 years in the Yukon and provides a number of diagnostic tests and also tells you the gender of the baby!

We got the call from the midwife, after having to redo the test and, after waiting, were told everything was normal (low risk). 

And, it’s a boy! Yes, I’m growing a teeny tiny “penis” inside of me. Super weird! But, not to worry, I have two important tasks as a future mother: to make sure he doesn’t grow up being an entitled white man and that his penis should be used for good, not evil.

At week 13, we had a midwife appointment and my husband Ryan came with me (he goes to every baby appointment). And we got to hear our baby boy’s heartbeat—170 bpm—like a freight train! Ryan said, “Wow, it feels really real now.”

As I entered my fourteenth week of pregnancy, I felt like a new woman. I didn’t feel too exhausted, then all of a sudden I woke up feeling like a cat being dragged through a drainpipe, and my breasts hurt like never before!

It was not a good day and also a reminder that you can’t take any day for granted or have any future plans for fear of the baby’s development impeding your own physical well-being.

At 15 weeks, my pants were starting to annoy my belly. Although our baby boy was still behind my pubic bone, I’m guessing he was pushing all of my organs up for his own comfort. I started getting anxiety with every little cramp or twinge. At this stage, you can’t feel the baby move or kick. And you don’t get another ultrasound until 20 weeks and your first-trimester symptoms are gone. So, you think, Is it still alive?

I love having a midwife. I called their pager and they said to come in, and we listened to the baby’s heart beat—140 bpm (happy and healthy hanging out in there). It was a great relief to just chat, too, about all of the body changes, mind changes and life changes that feel very overwhelming.

Month 5

At week 18 I still can’t feel the baby boy, which can be a rather unsettling experience. You take each day hoping it’s still alive and growing accordingly. I weigh myself every week to make sure I’m on the right weight track and my weight dips, which worries me. (I really should stop looking things up on Google.)

I’m just waiting, impatiently, for our next ultrasound at 19 weeks, to make sure everything is happy and healthy with the baby.

The ultrasound went swimmingly, and our son, Maverick Leo Campbell-Clarke, only slightly looked like an alien, which is good. The midwife said everything was all OK and that even though I was worried about only putting on six pounds, half-way through, he was measuring perfectly!

Week 20, we decided to head to Vancouver on Air North’s hockey special, to watch the Canucks play. It was my first Canadian hockey game and it was a great game to watch! We have planned our vacation to Mexico in January, and travelling on a hot plane while pregnant was not fun, so I won’t be looking forward to a longer flight south.

Twenty-two weeks and finally I felt the baby! Maverick was swirling and jabbing me. It’s a strange feeling to have going on inside of you. If you have ever seen the movie Alien, it pretty much feels how it looks when the alien is moving around, before it breaks free and attacks from the person’s belly!

Month 6

Week 23 and the freezing-cold weather made it difficult to keep exercising. However, I finally invested in a Nintendo Switch, with Ringfit (highly recommend it for those who don’t have much time to exercise or who prefer to be alone and in the comfort of their own home). It definitely helped during the cold snap. And once it broke, it made it easier to continue doing outside activities.

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