Shit is Getting Real

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My sister in law sent me my very first gift for bubs last week. I haven’t bought anything for the baby yet, it seems too soon and we are in the middle of moving, so there didn’t seem much point.

But it was really cool to hold up the tiny little onesies and try and picture our baby wearing it. Mind blowing. I don’t even really know how I get those clothes on the baby, but I guess I’ll work it out.

My sister in law also bought Penelope the same little white overalls and sent me a picture of her in them. How lovely it will be to have cousins so close in age. I am so glad it has worked out like this and they will always have each other.

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She also sent me some stretch mark cream that she said worked for her. She didn’t get any stretch marks with her pregnancy last year, but that ship has already sailed for me about 20 years ago! I have stretch marks all over me and they really don’t bother me that much anymore. It seems pointless putting the cream on my jiggly stretched out skin, but I may as well give it a go.

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Week 14: 20 January

How far along: 14 weeks

How big is baby: The size of a lemon

Sleep: No sleep. Insomnia is not going anywhere. The worst bit is that when I can’t sleep I like to snack… I find it helps soothe me.

Symptoms: Just zonked. I took my first sick day at work because I just couldn’t make it through the whole week. I told work I had a migraine and spent the day resting. It was just what I needed.

Best moment of this week: We have started to tell a few people now, which I find incredibly awkward, but it has been nice to share the secret and to have people be so excited for you.

Miss anything: Sleep.

Movement: No, just the usual flutters I feel, could be gas!

Food cravings: Potato cakes, always potato cakes… but I always want potato cakes, so this is not unusual!

Anything making you queasy or sick: Mostly just coffee and when AJ eats mints in the warm car.

Gender: Your guess is as good as mine. Still hoping for a little girl.

How’s your mood: It’s been a strange week. When I was home sick on Friday I got a text from AJ at work saying there had been gunshots and his building was in lockdown. He didn’t know what was happening and if the shots were inside or outside the building. It was a very scary few minutes while I waited to hear if everything was OK, then he was able to reassure me that it looked like the suspect had been apprehended by police outside his office window. He looked out and saw that horrible image that we have all seen in Melbourne of the gunman and the smashed car with the pram which had unfortunately happened right outside his office window. Little did we know of the additional carnage at that point. He was badly shaken up by the incident and what he could see going on, so he came home right away. I was so grateful he was OK, as he had just been out on the street talking to me on the phone and was supposed to be walking down there for a meeting that was cancelled at the last minute. I don’t even want to imagine life for me and our baby without AJ.

Looking forward to: Only working a 3 day week. Woo hoo!

The Bump: It’s looking a little bump-like in this picture. Or is it just the dress? Excuse the tower of boxes, I’m moving next week!

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12 Week Scan

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On Saturday 14th January I had my “12 week scan” except I was 13 weeks and 1 day, which is completely fine. This scan was to track bubs growth and has all the right parts (heart, brain, kidney etc.). It is also to check for Downs Syndrome and I am pleased to say that our little bub is all OK and measuring slightly ahead of schedule.

AJ came with me to the scan and it was lovely to see bub wiggling around and hear the heartbeat again, but we didn’t really feel emotional. I am not sure if I am a horrible mother already, but it all feels so far removed. My biggest concern was that our parking meter was about to run out and I didn’t want to get a fine. I’m not sure if it is all sinking in yet!

Our ultrasound technician had to do the the scan internally as she couldn’t see what she needed through my tummy. She didn’t say it was because I was too fat… but of course that is what I thought. Plus our photo of bub is a bit blurry and I read a forum for plus size pregnancy that a lot of the women said their ultrasound pictures were blurry because it’s hard to get a good photo through that extra layer of fat. I mentioned something to AJ when we got out and he just rolled his eyes and said he knew I was going to say that.

Now that we have the all-clear at the scan I guess we can start telling people our big news, but I feel really weird telling people. It seems so personal and I am a quite private person (despite this blog!). Maybe I’ll put it off another couple of weeks… I have almost let it slip several times at work now. I think about it so much and it affects so much of my life right now that I completely forget that everyone around me doesn’t know.

Week 13: 13 January

I stole this weekly update from Breathe Gently’s blog, I thought it would be fun to look back on one day.

How far along: 13 weeks- second trimester!
How big is baby: Almost as long as a pea pod.
Sleep: Waking up constantly in the night, but I’m being careful not to reach for my phone to browse and try and get back to sleep.
Symptoms: I’ve had a lot of pressure/cramping in my groin/abdomen that has made it very uncomfortable to sit all day at work. Nothing serious, just quite uncomfortable.
Best moment of this week: Getting some lovely sunflowers at work from AJ to brighten my day.
Miss anything: My mum, I had a sudden craving for her yorkshire puddings and wished she was here to make them for me.
Movement: You aren’t supposed to be feeling baby yet I don’t think, but I definitely feel twitching, I think it is just stuff happening in my tummy (like growing a baby).
Food cravings: Yorkshire pudding.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Coffee. I still can’t stand it.
Gender: No idea!
How’s your mood: Struggling this week because of some issues with our living situation and feeling sorry for myself that it all has to be so hard right now.
Looking forward to: Just making it through each week right now.
The Bump: Not much happening there just yet except my usual podginess.

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Excuse the mess, we are moving!

Pregnancy: Weeks 7-12

WEEK 7: 2nd December 2016

All I can say about this week is morning sickness. All day, every day. I haven’t actually thrown up, I just feel nauseous and tired. So tired. Unfortunately for me, I have the kind of nausea that seems to require a lot of carbs to make me feel better. I didn’t know it was possible to feel so sick, but want to eat so much food. I am insatiable. My focus on healthy eating has gone out the window and I eat bucket loads of bread this week. It’s the only thing that helps (especially cheese and vegemite sandwiches) but I know I can’t keep eating this way or I will gain 50 kilos in this pregnancy and find myself on the path to gestational diabetes.

I also get myself a nice little pregnancy cold that just won’t go away. The worst part is that most cold and flu medication isn’t safe to take during pregnancy. Between the nausea, the cold, the insomnia and the tiredness, I just want this year to be over so that I can have a break from work and get some rest.

I can’t stand the thought of coffee, breath mints or anything with artificial sweetener- even my beloved Pepsi Max. I used to drink two cans a day and now I can’t even look at it. I am in the car with my colleague and she is eating mint chewing gum and I’m almost sick because the smell is so overwhelming. If AJ has a breath mint (which he sucks on constantly) and comes near me I have to shove him away before I start dry retching. Fun and games!

WEEK 8: 9th December 2016

This feels like a small milestone to pass. Apparently the baby is now officially a fetus now, I’m not sure what it was for the past 7 weeks!

The big issues I have this week are that I have two “boozey” Christmas lunches with clients and my boss. It is a bad time of year to be pregnant and not at the stage where I can tell anyone. I am dodging pre-Christmas catch ups as much as I can and just saying I’m too busy.

My work lunches actually go OK, I don’t think anyone noticed too much that I wasn’t drinking, luckily most other people were drinking so much that they didn’t pay much attention to me. I just sat with a glass of wine in front of me and took the occasional minuscule sip to look normal.

Morning sickness has been off and on this week so I have had some little breaks from it. What I haven’t had a break from is the severe insomnia. I feel like a zombie. Plus the constant need to go to the toilet. I thought this came later in pregnancy when the baby was pushing on your bladder??!!

I had my 6 month review at work with my boss and she focussed on the recent ‘change in my behaviour’ as I had been working consistent 10-12 hour days and not taking breaks since I started, but since I got pregnant and have been so sick and tired I’ve regularly been leaving work at 5.00 pm because I am totally exhausted. She doesn’t know I am pregnant, but made it clear she is disappointed in my behaviour the last couple of months. I also took two hours off for a doctors appointment that she threw back in my face. This is going to be an interesting next 6 months with her…

In exciting news I booked an obstetrician and hospital! I had no idea what or how I was supposed to do this, so I had been waiting to see my GP to ask for her help, but she had been away the last 3 weeks. So I went to see her and she gave me some recommendations, which were all booked out. Shit. I decided I wanted to have the baby at Frances Perry House which I had read lots of good things about. I rang them and they had one spot left for July with a new obstetrician name Pip Costley, which I immediately nabbed. I am so relieved, I am not sure what I would have done if I missed out because most of the other private hospitals are on the wrong side of town for me. I decided to go private because I have insurance, so I may as well. It looks like it’ll cost about $5,000 out of pocket (possibly more because I am unsure of a few things) which is more than I expected. Looks like that babymoon to a tropical island I wanted to take might not be happening! 🙂

Cravings this week are fruit, cheese and vegemite sandwiches and soup. Sounds kind of healthy, but not really… not when butter is involved!

WEEK 9: 16th December 2016

Every week I pass feels like a giant achievement. AJ said he is starting to feel like everything might just be OK. He has been majorly stressed that something will go wrong. His sister recently had a miscarriage at around 12 weeks, so he has been really worried that it could happen to us too. I’ve felt pretty calm about the whole thing, whatever will be, will be. This is very unlike me as I am a massive stress head, but I’ve just had a feeling that everything will be OK.

This week I have my work Christmas party which is a cocktail party for 400 people that I am organising. I probably wouldn’t have gone if I had any choice, but I was volunteered by my boss to be on the organising committee, so I had to attend. The night before I only had 90 minutes sleep due to severe insomnia and morning sickness so I know this is going to be a long day/night. I get to the party early to set up and everything is going pretty well. Because it’s such a large event, the venue has a team of event planners who are doing the hard work. I last at the party until the speeches finish at 9.30 pm and then I make my excuses and leave because I am completely exhausted. AJ is out helping his sister with a jumping castle party and gets home about 11.30 pm and says I sounded like I was drunk when he tried to talk to me. I was so incredibly tired that I was in a drunken like confused state and not making any sense. I don’t even remember talking to him, but he (jokingly) suggests I must have had a couple of bottles of wine at the Christmas party.

I also have another work Christmas lunch with my team. My boss is intent on everyone getting drunk and is REALLY pushy with the drinks. Lucky for me I actually have some major work deadlines that I need to meet because it’s my last day in the office before the break so I try to excuse myself after lunch to go back to work. It is quite a battle to leave the party and my boss makes it pretty awkward for me. I don’t understand why people are so forceful with alcohol?! I guess I have never noticed it before because I don’t normally say no to a drink!

The big question on my mind this week is if we tell my family about the pregnancy at Christmas next week. We are not telling AJ’s family for another month or so given his sister’s recent miscarriage, telling them at the holidays would be insensitive. We are going to Sydney for Christmas to see my brother and sister-in-law and my new niece and my dad and step mum are also coming. I would prefer to wait until I get the all-clear past 12 weeks, but it’s going to be difficult to hide this from my family for the 3 days we are there. It is very well known that I enjoy a drink (or 20) and so no one will believe it if I don’t drink at the planned family celebrations on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Drinking is a very big part of my family celebrations! Plus I’ll likely be tired and nauseous so it will be difficult to hide that as well. I am leaning toward telling them at this stage, but I might play it by ear.

WEEK 10- 23rd December 2016

The start of week 10 is my 36th birthday. Will this be my last birthday as a non-mum? Crazy to think about! My birthday is 23rd December and we have a family Christmas function scheduled with AJ’s family that day as we won’t see them on Christmas day. His family live 4 hours away and I struggle with motion/morning sickness in the car, 8 hours is a long time to be in the car when you feel sick!

On Christmas Eve we fly to Sydney to see my family for Christmas. I once again suffer terrible motion/morning sickness on the flight. AJ suggests that I sit on paper because he heard this helps? I’m not sure if he is pulling my leg, but it does seem to help a little. My dad and brother pick us up from the airport and take us back to their house in Leichhardt where I can cuddle my new niece Penelope. Drinks are offered around, but I manage to avoid any suspicion and stick to juice.

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On Christmas morning we go back to my brother’s house for lunch. I’m quite nervous because I know I’ll probably be telling everyone our news. I know they’ll be happy, but for some reason I find it kind of awkward making a big announcement. I had tried to get a onesie made up for Penelope with #1 Cousin written on it, but it wasn’t going to be ready in time unfortunately. So I have no idea how I’m going to announce the news, I guess I’ll just wing it.

As soon as I get to my brother’s house I am offered champagne, I busy myself tucking into the lovely brunch my sister-in-law, Connie, has made and avoid the alcohol for now. My aunty, uncle and cousins are there so I don’t want to mention the news until they leave at lunch time. After the champagne, Connie and my step mum make a jug of sangria and after the sangria they make a jug of Pims (both of which they know I love). I take a glass of sangria and hope no one notices that I don’t drink any. Already there is mention of a special bottle of champers and port for later on. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to avoid drinking at Christmas with my family so I have to tell them!

Finally at lunch time everyone sits down at the table and more drinks are poured. I decide it’s now or never so I stand up and walk to the fridge and casually say “I’m just going to have lemonade because I’m actually pregnant”. I wish I had taken a photo of their reaction. It was complete stunned and silent. No one believed me and they were all looking at each other trying to assess if this was a joke or serious. My dad dropped the bread roll he was buttering onto the floor out of shock. Then my step mum started to cry and everyone was hugging me. I hadn’t spoken to them about trying to conceive so I knew it would be a huge surprise. Lucky I also knew that everyone would be very, very happy. My dad and step mum have wanted grandkids for a long time and just adore Penelope (they have been driving the 8 hours to Sydney to see her every 3 weeks since she has been born). I also knew my brother and sister-in-law really wanted a cousin for Penelope and I was the only opportunity for her to have one.

My brother does jokingly mention that he wishes he knew I was pregnant before he bought all the alcohol because he has drastically over catered now that I am not drinking… ha ha.

On Boxing Day we all meet for dinner by the water in Sydney at a lovely restaurant. Everyone, except me and baby Penelope, are enjoying oysters and wine as we watch the sunset over the Sydney harbour. I am lucky that I do not miss drinking at all because I have constant nausea. Connie said when she was pregnant she really missed drinking, but she didn’t suffer from any morning sickness (lucky her), so I guess that is one positive to morning sickness!

We fly back home to Melbourne after a short and sweet trip to Sydney. We have our first appointment with our obstetrician on Wednesday. AJ is working, but he meets me at the hospital and we meet Pip for the first time. She is absolutely lovely and definitely the right choice for us!!! I ask her the really important questions like can I dye my hair (yes) and can we go to Bali while I’m pregnant (yes, but she probably wouldn’t do it-therefore, we won’t either). She gives me a quick scan to make sure everything is OK with bubs. Apparently bubs is moving around very quickly and doing somersaults so he/she is hard to catch, but everything looks fine. Next we make about a million appointments for scans and check ups over the next few months and I get a whole heap of blood and urine taken for different tests. We also decide to do the Harmony test which is a blood test that measures for the chance of genetic disorders (like Down Syndrome) and I should have the results in the new year.

I’m on Christmas break for the rest of the week and take the opportunity to do as little as possible. I have been looking forward to this time to relax for the last month and I am so happy to just lay about on the couch and catch up on all my TV shows. Bliss.

WEEK 11: 30th December 2016

This week I am craving peanut butter sandwiches. When I wake up in the middle of the night feeling nauseous and I can’t sleep, I go and make myself a peanut butter sandwich and I feel much better. I am eating constantly and I’m starting to get worried about how much weight I am gaining. I haven’t weighed myself, but I can tell I have piled on the kilos. I’ll definitely be focussing on healthy eating… in the new year…

One day this week it is like my boobs suddenly doubled in size. I look at myself in the mirror and I am sure my boobs are bigger. A few hours later, AJ gets home from work and the first thing he says is “are your boobs bigger?”. So I guess it’s not just me who noticed. I already have big boobs, so this is going to be fun…

New Years Eve is uneventful for me this year. I never really do much, but I do normally have a bottle of champagne at least. I knew I’d be too tired to do much tonight, so instead we went on a nice drive to King Lake and had a picnic and then drove to another country town called Yea for ice cream and a walk around and are home by dinner time. After we watch a movie I go to bed and expect to be asleep early, but strangely enough I can’t seem to sleep tonight. It’s hard not to reflect on the year that has been, the people I miss and the changes ahead.

I am back at work in the new year, but the good news is that the nausea seems to have finished this week. I am so, so, so happy to see the back of the morning (all day) sickness. YAY!!!

The hospital calls me this week with the results of my Harmony test and I am thrilled that the results are all normal. I must admit that I didn’t worry about it too much because my attitude is that what will be, will be and I’ll deal with it when it happens. It is fantastic to hear that there are no health concerns for bubs at this stage. The craziest thing is that the nurse then said to me that they also had the gender results and would I like to know the sex. WTF??!! Way to spring this on me without warning. I didn’t realise you could get the gender results so early. AJ and I had discussed waiting until the birth to find out the sex, but I am so surprised that I almost say yes, but lucky I have the strength to say no. It plays on my mind over the next few days that I could make a phone call and find out the sex of our baby. I am not good at being patient, so we’ll see how long I last.

WEEK 12: 6th January 2017

Wow 12 weeks. This is the end of the first trimester. I can’t say that it has felt quick… or especially easy. The main thing has been that I haven’t had any health issues with the baby and that part has been really good. I spend a lot of time on a baby forum now and a lot of women have had a different concerns with bubs already so I feel lucky not to have experienced this.

I’ve been so thankful to have less morning sickness, but I seem to be struck more by exhaustion this week. I keep falling asleep on the tram on the way home from work and then on the couch before dinner. I just can’t keep my eyes open. I think the heat we have been having this week isn’t helping, it’s just draining me of all energy and I have had daily headaches. On Friday I almost call in sick to work, but I figure I can make it through one more day.

This week I decide to focus on being healthy and exercise. Now the nausea has worn off I need to get back to better eating and exercise because I can feel that I have gained weight. I am not showing at all yet, but I have certainly thickened up everywhere and some of my clothes are not fitting me already. It’s too soon to be gaining weight like this! I have been more hungry than I have ever been in my entire life. Is it normal to be this hungry? I am trying to eat a lot of good foods- fruit, veg, chicken, eggs, wholegrain bread, brown rice, yoghurt and nuts to keep the hunger at bay. I’m cutting out as much of the crap as possible, but my resistance is a little down right now and I am not 100% perfect.

My boobs are growing more and more and this week I noticed that my shirts were busting open in an un-ladylike manner at work. My back is already a bit achey from these bazoongas and I really have to concentrate on my posture when I walk. Eeek, how big are these things going to get?!

Pregnancy: Weeks 1-6

1 – 3 WEEKS: 21st October – 4th November 2016

I have no idea that I’m pregnant, but oh my god, why are my boobs so freaking sore?

4 WEEKS: 11th November 2016

I’m experiencing what appears to be severe PMS symptoms: cramps, emotional, sore boobs and tired. I am so tired and emotional at work that I joke to a colleague that I am close with I might need to take a pregnancy test because I do not feel like myself at all. But I don’t really think much more about it.

5 WEEKS: 18th November 2016

I’ve had terrible insomnia all week, just laying in bed awake all night with no hope of sleep. When I do sleep, I have extremely vivid and strange dreams. Then I’m so tired that I fall asleep on the tram on the way home from work.

My PMS symptoms have continued and I start to think that if it is PMS, surely my period would have come by now? My period is a couple of weeks late, but that is normal for me. I’ve only got my period 3 times this year (thanks to Clomid) so it’s not unusual at all that my period would be late.

On Thursday my symptoms are getting out of control. I’m busy and distracted at work, but I write “PT” on my hand to remind myself to buy a pregnancy test when I get home.

I stop by the little supermarket in my apartment building and try to covertly buy a pregnancy test and hope like hell I don’t run into my neighbours. I wait until I am busting to go to the toilet to take the test and then try to read the instructions. This is not smart because it’s really hard to read instructions when you’re about to wet yourself.

It seems I have bought a confusing test, there are two windows, one that says “Test” and one that says “Control”. Both windows get 1 line in them and I’m disappointed because I am hoping to see 2 lines in the “Test” window. I thought “Control” is just to test that it is working correctly. Oh well, looks like I’m not pregnant, I really didn’t expect to be anyway.

A couple of hours later I go back and read the instructions again and start to think I have misunderstood it. Maybe a line in each window means pregnant? I really don’t know at this point. Fuck.

Panic strikes and I immediately google “planned pregnancy regret”. I feel like I am going to be sick. What have I done?

10 minutes pass and I have recovered. The shock has worn off, but it’s been replaced with denial. I decide that I have definitely read the test wrong. I’m not going to think much more about it until I can do another test. AJ is in Sydney for work and his flight has been delayed, he’s not going to be home until really late, so I decide not to mention anything until I have more information. But I am pretty sure that I am not pregnant.

The pregnancy test is on my mind all weekend, but I’m scared to take another test. If I take a test and it’s negative, then I’ll be disappointed, so my logic is to just ignore it. Then on Sunday AJ is away all day helping his sister with her jumping castle business, so I decide to walk down the street and buy another test. I’d rather do this on my own so there is less pressure. Hopefully this test will be less confusing.

It’s positive.

This time I’m excited and I spend all afternoon trying to work out my due date. Unfortunately I can’t work it out because my periods are all out of whack. I am guessing it’s some time in July.

I don’t know how I should tell AJ. I know he is going to be completely shocked. Neither of us ever really thought that I would get pregnant.

He gets home late after a long day outside in the heat and he’s exhausted. We sit out on the balcony and barbecue for dinner. I wait until he sits down and basically hand him the positive test. He’s happy, but the news doesn’t really sink in. It’s a surreal moment for us both and he is more in shock than anything.

6 WEEKS: 25th November 2016

On the Monday morning I ring my fertility doctor and let her know that I had a positive pregnancy test. She asks me to come in for a blood test to check my Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) levels which will confirm pregnancy and give a rough idea of how far along I am.

I go into East Melbourne IVF for my blood tests at 7.00 am on Tuesday and the clinic calls me back before lunch to confirm that I am indeed pregnant and that HCG is 12029, which indicates approximately 6 weeks. She starts talking about deciding if I will be public or private and choosing an obstetrician. I have no idea about any of this stuff. Panic starts to set in.

She books me in for a scan next week where they should be able to tell me the due date and maybe hear the heartbeat. I can’t believe this is happening.

AJ is getting excited now that we have confirmation from the doctor. He brings me home my favourite white blooms and tells me he will give me a foot massage every night. Let’s see how long this lasts!

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Sunday night I am suddenly struck by morning all day sickness. I am suddenly nauseous 24/7 and it is sucking the life out of me. At first I was excited that I had morning sickness, but the novelty has worn off very quickly.

On Tuesday we go in for my first ultrasound nice and early at 7.30 am. The doctor doing the scan tries to do the ultrasound through my belly, but can’t see anything, so he does an internal ultrasound. This works! We can hear the heartbeat and see the little baby. The doctor says that everything looks fine and I’m 6 weeks and 4 days pregnant. So I’m about a week behind where I thought I was and my due date is officially 21st July 2017. The doctor also confirms that it is just one baby. Due to conceiving with Clomid, there is a higher chance of multiple birth. I’m happy it’s only one, I definitely couldn’t handle more than that!

I’m cautiously excited at this point, but I still feel like there is a long way to go before I’ll believe that everything will be OK. We leave the ultrasound and wait for a tram to go into work and I spend the whole time dry retching. This is going to be a long 9 months!

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Well, Well, Well…

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Yes, that little blur is a baby in my tummy! Can you believe it? I really can’t. I am going to be a mum. You would think that after trying for quite some time and undergoing fertility treatment that I would be a little less surprised. It’s not like we didn’t plan this, I just didn’t really believe it would happen.

So, as of right now, I am 14 weeks pregnant and I am due on 21st July. I don’t know if we are having a boy or a girl yet… I think we will wait and let it be a surprise. If I can be patient.

I’ve been keeping some notes on the first 13 weeks of this pregnancy, which I’ll start posting on this blog now. Skip over them if baby stuff bores you to tears (that was me a couple of years ago). This is my first baby and you’ll quickly realise that I have no idea what I am doing! Any advice is happily accepted. 🙂

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Oh and I haven’t really told many people yet, not even all of our immediate family, so if you happen to know me in real life, please help me keep the secret just a bit longer until I get the chance to tell everyone please!