Pregnancy: Weeks 21-24

Oh the hormones!!  It is hard to tell what is hormones and what is just stress from this life-changing event, but these weeks were full of so many highs and lows!

Weight Gain

I have not and do not plan on sharing overall weight gain because I don’t want to be part of the comparison trap, but I want to share my emotional reaction to my weight gain. 

Since the beginning of my pregnancy, I have already weighed more than I ever have, and was completely fine with this.  I was gaining each week, but then that weight gain quadrupled one week.  This was right after our Hawaiian babymoon (where I ate more bloating foods than I normally do) and a week of super hot weather in the Bay Area (107 without AC) so I knew I was retaining a lot of water and completely off my usual eating.

Nonetheless, this was the first time I had negative thoughts about my body during pregnancy.  What if this continues?  What if even with healthy eating, I gain more than is healthy?  My body felt puffy and swollen and foreign.  I still love being pregnant and am proud of my body for what it is doing, but that doesn’t mean I am free of negative thoughts.  I struggled that week, but I stuck to my healthy diet (no restrictions in terms of calories, fat, protein or carbs…have to feed that baby!), and my body stopped retaining water and felt more “normal.”  I knew all I could do was acknowledge I was feeling this way, ask for support from my husband, and trust in my body!  I also probably should not have weighed myself that week knowing how I felt – but live and learn!


Physically, I definitely feel the pregnancy now.  Gone are the days when I could easily forget for a couple hours.  My muscles have been feeling the extra weight and I can also feel myself losing some muscle mass.  I have heard this is normal, so I am just keeping up with my exercise routine (shared in the last update) and making sure to eat enough protein for support.

I have also switched to sitting on a yoga ball as my chair during the day and even in the evenings when we watch TV.  My midwife suggested it as a way to encourage baby to be in the optimal position for birth.  Sure, baby is still flipping around, but I am just working on making sure this is part of my routine.


Yep, I have started getting Braxton Hicks contractions!  I have to say, I did not know they started so early, but my midwife says it is normal.  They do not hurt and honestly, I don’t feel them unless my hands are on my belly.


If you haven’t already heard, everyone and their mamas will give you advice during pregnancy.  I knew this and up until these weeks, I was handling the unsolicited advice like a champ.  But that was because it was mostly coming from strangers who don’t know me, my lifestyle, or our choices for pregnancy and child-rearing.

However, these weeks friends and family started weighing in.  From telling me what to listen to, to how many hours to work per day, to how much weight I should gain, to what I should eat, to how much I should spend on baby items, to whether I should care about organic products or not … it was rough.

My husband and I have certain wishes for raising our babies – such as choosing non-toxic items as much as possible – but we also have not raised children yet and value our friends’ and families’ experiences.  We also value their feelings and want to make sure that if we are choosing a different path that we do not criticize their parenting choices, especially our own parents!  These weeks, I got a crash course in walking the fine line between staying true to ourselves but also including our friends and family.  I offended some people and felt offended, but I figure this is part of motherhood and I need to do what I feel is best!

You may also enjoy:

Hello! I'm Danielle, the nutritionist, lawyer and mama behind gheeful. I left Big Law two years ago to pursue my passion for educating people about wellness. I am a entrepreneur, wife, sister, daughter and full-time SAHM to Ellington. On this blog, I share about wellness, motherhood, non-toxic living, home decor and inspiration, and travel. Thank you so much for visiting my little corner of the internet!

  • Instagram - Black Circle
  • Facebook - Black Circle
  • Pinterest - Black Circle