How Baby Madelyn and the parents-to-be are doing at 18 weeks

How is Madelyn?

Madelyn is about 9 cm — the size of a sweet potato. The doctor tells me she’s healthy; her brain, heart, and other organs are functioning properly, and her heartbeat is about 155 bpm (normal for this point in her development). I got to see her in action during my level two/anatomy sonogram this week. She was moving all over the place — and she moved me to tears! I was eight weeks pregnant when I had my first sonogram, and Madelyn was a little blob at that point. Fast forward to 18 weeks, and she’s so much more grown up.

Here are a few photos of her sweet face and tiny foot…


How is mom?

My bump is starting to be more visible!

I’m grateful for everyone who has recently asked me: “How are you feeling?” It’s a simple question, but it holds more weight when you’re pregnant. Some pregnant women get annoyed by it; I like it.

I’m feeling strong and healthy. The daily queasiness has subsided, and I have more energy than I did during the first trimester. It’s becoming harder to get a good night’s sleep, though, and some days I feel exhausted as a result. I look at it as my body’s way of preparing me for the even greater lack of sleep that will come with having a newborn!

I’m feeling so reassured after this week’s sonogram; hearing that Madelyn is healthy so far was a huge relief. When I got home from my sonogram appointment, I was able recognize Madelyn’s kicks for the first time. It was as if she was telling me, “Yes, mom, that’s me you’ve been feeling!” When I feel three taps, I take that as a sign that Madelyn is saying, “I love you.”

How is dad?

Troy’s doing well. He talks to Madelyn and tells her he loves her every day in hopes that she’ll learn to recognize his voice. He’s always there for me with open arms, which I find especially comforting on days when I’m feeling emotional (thanks, raging hormones!). He cooks on nights when I end up working late, and he’s been equally excited about the pregnancy and Madelyn’s growth. I couldn’t ask for a more supportive husband/dad-to-be.

Nearly every weekend, Troy has accompanied me on window-shopping trips to baby stores. (This weekend, we’re actually going to buy something — a crib!) It’s been fun seeing the kid in him come out, especially when he’s in the stuffed animal section of a baby store. He apparently has a fondness for cute lions, monkeys, and elephants…


Troy’s facial expressions capture his silliness and sweetness — and the excitement we’re feeling these days. There’s so much to be grateful for, and so much to look forward to.


Published by Mallary Tenore Tarpley

Mallary is a mom of two young kiddos -- Madelyn and Tucker. Mallary absolutely loves being a mom and often writes about the need to find harmony when juggling motherhood and work. Mallary is the Assistant Director of the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas at the University of Texas at Austin, where she manages the Center's various programs related to distance learning, freedom of expression, and digital journalism. Previously, she was Executive Director of Images & Voices of Hope and Managing Editor of The Poynter Institute’s media news site, Mallary grew up outside of Boston and graduated from Providence College in Rhode Island. In 2015, she received a certificate in nonprofit management from Duke University. She now lives in beautiful Austin, Texas, with her kids, husband Troy and cat Clara. She's working on a memoir, slowly but surely. You can reach her at

3 thoughts on “How Baby Madelyn and the parents-to-be are doing at 18 weeks

  1. It such a wonderful time for you both! Thank goodness for good husbands! Those emotional hormones are so real! Enjoy those little kicks! Sitting with a sleeping 8-month-old on my day off! Hugs to you little mommy! You look great!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mallary, it is so nice to see these pictures. I was wondering how you were, well now I can see! You, Troy and Madelyn look great. ❤️U all. Sarah

    Sent from my iPad



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