We had our 18 week anatomy and growth ultrasound today. This really gave me the opportunity to observe baby’s movements. I first felt flutters from this baby around 13 weeks and the first real kicks towards 15 weeks. They have been getting stronger and more frequent. At this stage of my pregnancy with Everly I was just starting to feel the strong kicks. However after my “18 week” scan with her our due date was set back by 2 weeks so I was actually 16 weeks, so it looks like things are the same kick wise, I just didn’t get the flutter feeling the first time. I think as a veteran mom I knew what the feeling was and so I recognized it a little bit earlier, the first time I likely thought it was gas!
Activity level of the baby is thought by some to determine gender. My nana herself told me this baby must be a boy because I felt the movements earlier. My midwife said it’s because I have “been there and done that before.” I did some research about gender and foetuses and found that this belief is thought to be based on the assumption males are more energetic while females are more passive and serene.
This theory is obvious flawed. It doesn’t take into account whether the mom is a first timer or not, whether she was at a healthy body fat percentage pre-pregnancy or consider the fact that some babies move a lot at night when their mom is sleeping and the sleep during the day while she is moving.
So what does affect movement of the baby? Well I looked it up of course. And I found this interesting study that linked the amount of cortisol the mother had in her body with movement. The mom’s who were more stressed out, had babies that moved more. Considering the fact that I was tremendously stressed out in the first trimester with grieving my mother’s death it is not surprising now that this baby has been a mover and shaker from very early on. This study also shared that the human fetus moves once per minute on average! And what did they find in relation to gender and movement? “Although there is a well-documented and robust sex difference in motor activity after birth, with boys displaying greater and more vigorous motor activity (Eaton & Enns, 1986), this has not been consistently observed in the prenatal period.” So in conclusion, judging the activity level of a fetus is completely subjective.
So now I bet you are wondering, how much did baby move during the ultrasound?? Baby was asleep when I first got there, but after the tech did some measurements that pushed him/her around a little bit the action started. We could see baby move shortly after I could feel it and it was so fun to watch! This baby is a model in the making let me just say! They were pulling all the stops with the posing; B and I were laughing at some of the funny shots that we got. Miss Everly would not cooperate for photos at her 18 week ultrasound, we got three and you couldn’t see her face. Below is what we got with this one. Based on this old wives tale we would be having a boy, and Everly should have been a boy too.
For those of you who are like the majority of people and have trouble making sense of an ultrasound here are some easier pictures to decipher that will give you an idea of what baby looks like and the size!