Why I Decided to have a Baby

I’ve been blogging for a long time now, over 10 years on and off. So if you have been reading for a while, you might have heard me say that I wasn’t planning to have kids. I have never felt a strong maternal urge to have kids. I didn’t ever grow up assuming that I would have my own family. It was just never that important to me. Like marriage I suppose, I didn’t need it to be happy.

As the years passed and I turned 30, nothing changed. My biological clock didn’t start ticking. I had a great life without kids and I didn’t think I needed to change anything. AJ and I have a blast together and I was surrounded by good friends and family. Plus, I was working on finding a good place in my career, managing my weight issues and enjoying a new-found love for travel and experiencing life.

I think that another factor in my lack of biological clock was that I always had a reverse mother -daughter role with my mum. My entire life she was severely sick with bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder. I cared for her and was the only one who she would listen to, who could get her to take her meds, who she would let visit her in the psych ward. I think I was the only person who didn’t judge her and gave her unconditional love. Like a mother would I guess. So I didn’t ever feel like I needed to be a mother.

Then, after my mum passed away, I decided that I could never ever have kids without my mum. It was non-negotiable. All my mum wanted was to be a grandmother and I hated the thought of having kids and her not being here. I still hate it. Then as the fog of grief cleared slightly I felt such a big loss in my life. I had such a massive hole which used to be filled with family.

You see, after mum passed away, my older brother became estranged from our family and my younger brother and his wife moved 900 kms away. My dad had always lived far away and had remarried after divorcing my mum years away. I have only ever had sporadic contact with my extended family every few years. Suddenly I felt like I had no family. I didn’t realise how much I needed my family until they were gone. That is where the urge to have my own family started.

I don’t want this to sound like I decided to have a baby because I was lonely. It was much more than that. It was about creating a family for me and AJ. I wanted to have those happy family memories of my own, Christmases, family dinners, laughter and tears. I wanted to love and care for and be part of a family again.

I didn’t need to convince AJ. While he was happy with our life the way it was, I knew he would be up for the adventure of having kids. Plus, I always knew he would be the most amazing and supportive father in the world and it was almost a waste for someone like him not to be a father!

I was still petrified about whether I was making the right decision. Was I letting grief and fear and loneliness guide my decisions? How was I going to do this without my mum? Was I going to be tired and stressed and broke for the rest of my life now? How could I cope with changing nappies, snotty noses and the chaos and mess that comes with kids? I don’t know the answer to any of those questions, but I am happy that I have this baby in my tummy and that in 5 months we’ll get to be his/her parents.

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Week 18: 17 February

How far along: 18 weeks- getting close to half way.

How big is baby: The size of a capsicum. A girl at work was asking me how big the baby was now and I said it was still tiny really and my app was telling me it was 14.2 cm from head to bum. She got out a ruler and measured that and we were both shocked by how big that actually was. I think I just assumed it was still this tiny little nugget, but it’s really growing now! That was a surreal moment.

Sleep: Same, same this week. Waking up very early and can’t get back to sleep. I’m not sure how much of it is insomnia, anxiety or just changed sleep patterns. It’s not really bothering me too much.

Symptoms: The main thing I am struggling with is a major 3.00 pm slump. I can barely function at work after this time and just want to go home to bed. Other ongoing symptoms have been consistent throughout my pregnancy: dizziness, cramping and needing to go to the toilet all of the bloody time.

Best moment of this week: I had a few nice moments where I felt special this week. One of the agencies I work with sent me flowers to work to congratulate me, my blog friend Nessa sent me some baby goodies, my sister-in-law treated me to a night in a hotel and AJ bought me some lovely choccies and perfume. It reminded me how lucky I am to be surrounded by good people.

Oh and submitting my maternity leave forms, my last day of work is 16th June. The countdown is on!

Miss anything: Missing AJ, even though he is still here with me, he has been working long hours on his business and I feel like I barely see him. I miss having time to chat with him about the baby, but I am proud of how hard he is working.

Movement: Not feeling anything much this week. I am sure I felt it last week, but not this week.

Food cravings: A plain toasted cheese sandwich would be nice. Craving plain, dry foods as I am feeling a little off this week.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Not queasy, just a lack of appetite. Not that it’s stopped me from eating of course!

Gender: Some annoying people at work have started predicting it’s a boy… hmmm

How’s your mood: My mood has been a bit cheerier now that I have confirmed I am moving into a hotel close to work on the 13th March until my new house is finished being built. Not long now and I’ll be rid of the hideous long commute, have my own private space, reliable hot water, internet and TV reception. I am so excited!!!

Looking forward to: Moving into our hotel in just a few weeks. Bliss.

The Bump: I took a photo in my jeans this week. I am still in my pre-pregnancy size 14 jeans, but they are really being pushed to the limit now. Before baby they were too big, now they are very snug and I need to undo them in the car to give me some relief. This might be the last time these jeans make an appearance!

Still no noticeable bump to the outside eye, but I can see how rounded out I am there. I used to be flat (thank you tummy tuck), but now I have a little bump. It’s enough to mean a lot of my clothes don’t fit, but not enough to need to wear maternity clothes. The awkward stage!

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Week 17: 10 February

How far along: 17 weeks!

How big is baby: The size of a turnip. That just makes me think of yummy homemade soup.

Sleep: Up and down. Insomnia strikes about half of the time, but I guess I am getting used to it. I just try not to worry about it snuggle up with AJ while he snoozes and play with my phone (when the internet works here).

Symptoms: Not too many physical symptoms. I’m tired, grumpy and stressed, but I think that is more about my living situation right now and not pregnancy. I think physical symptoms are going well this week though. 

Best moment of this week: To be honest, I couldn’t think of any great moments this week. I am trying to find my happy place in small things like burning a nice candle, going on a weekend walk, watching a movie with AJ. It’s the little things…

Miss anything: Hmmm, what don’t I miss… my own space, a kitchen, not sharing a bathroom with teenagers, phone service, internet, TV reception… Not that I am complaining or anything… 🙂

Movement: I think I actually felt something this week. A few times I felt some pretty major flutters in my tummy that I am pretty sure was bubs somersaulting around inside.

Food cravings: Nothing in particular, but still enjoying fruit, which is unusual for me.

Anything making you queasy or sick: The same things like coffee, mints, pepsi max, but they are making me feel much less sick now. Things are on the way up.

Gender: I don’t know! I am projecting girl because I really want it to be girl. Most people say they think I am having a girl because they know I am a girly type and would suit having a little girl. Or they are trying to be nice and make me feel better!

How’s your mood: Oh my goodness, I am a mess. I cried on the train tonight while reading a sad book. So that says it all.

Looking forward to: Just moving into this next stage of my life, I’m ready to fast forward past the next few months and be in my new house, on maternity leave, with my baby.

The Bump: I know you can’t see anything in the photo below, but I can see it a bit more now and I can definitely feel it. I am starting to get a lot of comments from people who think its strange I don’t have a bump yet, but it really is quite normal from what I have read. I am not expecting to be showing for another 4 or so weeks.

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Week 16: 3 February

This week I finally told people at work that I am pregnant. I didn’t really plan on telling my boss just yet, but an opportunity came us where we were having a big talk (i.e. she was telling me off) and it was the right time to tell her. She then proceeded to tell my team a few days later because she said if I wasn’t going to do it, she was going to tell them. So that seemed a bit weird. No one believed her at first, which has been a common reaction. I am not sure why this has shocked everyone so much?!

So now just about everyone I am close with knows I’m pregnant. It has been such a weird and awkward experience telling people I am pregnant because it feels like such a personal thing to share. I really hate talking about myself normally and now I am getting so many questions (which is lovely of people to care) but I feel quite uncomfortable. Has anyone else felt like that?

How far along:  16 weeks, yay! Ive been excited to get to this point. It seems like I am really getting there. Next milestone is 20 weeks. 🙂

How big is baby: The size of an avocado, which is weird when I have eaten avocado for lunch every day this week.

Sleep: The insomnia hasn’t been too bad this week, but sleep has been a bit lacking due to the very early mornings for my long commute to work.

Symptoms: Just so bloody tired. I have found myself pretty much done for the day at 3.00 pm and barely able to function after that. It might have more to do with the heat and the commute to work than the baby. Also, I feel like my hair looks like shit lately, is this a pregnancy thing or just having a bad hair month?

Best moment of this week: AJ got a new job, which has nothing to do with the baby, but I am excited for him. Unfortunately this means he won’t get much paternity leave, but hopefully he’ll be able to take 2 weeks off when I have bubs. I have a feeling I will have my hands full!

Miss anything: I’m still missing my mum. Ive been trying not to think about it, but I had a horrible dream on Saturday morning that my gran passed away and my mum was hysterical because it meant that I didn’t have her or my gran to be there for me and the baby and she was worried about me. I woke up sobbing and just haven’t felt good all week. My gran is actually alive in real life, but she hasn’t known who I am for 5 years and can’t really communicate with me at all. So even though she’s still alive, I miss her so much too. It’s just really bought home for me that I don’t have my mum or gran with me. It doesn’t help when so many people keep saying things to me about my mum. People just assume my mum is still around and will help me with the baby and I have to correct them. The HR girl at work was awful because she was pushing me to give her a date for my return to work and I said it would depend on childcare and she flippantly said “can’t your mum just babysit?”, which was just annoying on a number of levels.

Movement: I’m not feeling anything. Maybe in the next few weeks.

Food cravings: Nothing too much, just dry/carby foods and fruit. Nothing weird. I am trying to eat better this week after eating sooooo much take away while we were moving.

Anything making you queasy or sick: No issues this week, but I still can’t stand the sight of chili, onion, capsicum, tomato, mints, coffee and pepsi max. That’s been consistent for my entire pregnancy.

Gender: I still don’t know, I always think of it as a little girl, but that’s just because I want a girl!

How’s your mood: Don’t ask! Oh dear, its been a bit tough again this week. I have felt teary and emotional all week and just not like myself. I am blaming the hormones.

Looking forward to: Just fast forwarding through the next 4 months and being in my new house and having a big fat baby bump.

The Bump: I can really feel it now when I am laying in bed, but no one else can really see it yet. Now that people at work know I am pregnant everyone keeps saying that they can’t believe I am 16 weeks pregnant because you can’t tell. I think it’s quite normal not to have a bump until about 20 weeks for your first pregnancy. Obviously I have a bit of padding for the bump to poke through yet.

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Week 15: 27 January

How far along: 15 weeks

How big is baby: The size of an apple

Sleep: Baaaaaad. I am so bloody tired. I’ve got insomnia, but I’ve been moving house too, so I am more exhausted than ever.

Symptoms: This week its been insomnia, heartburn, constipation (sorry!) and dizziness. I’ve also felt teary all week, which is unlike me, so I am not sure if it’s the hormones or just because I am so tired and its been a stressful week.

Best moment of this week: I am not sure there was a good moment this week.

I had to pack up my apartment and put it into storage and move out to AJ’s sister’s place in the country while we wait for our townhouse to finish being built. I am not sure when the townhouse will be done, hopefully June (baby is due 21st July). So in the meantime, we are living with AJ’s sister, her partner, their 2 year old, 4 year and 19 year old step son and his girlfriend. And we are commuting 90 minutes each way to work. Plus, I am beyond terrified of spiders and can barely function here because of my fear. Fuck my life. (Though I must say that my sister-in-law and her family have been so gracious and kind to take us in, I am so grateful).

Moving was physically and emotionally hard. I had to open my storage cage and go through my mum’s stuff that I put in there almost 3 years ago when she passed away and never opened again. I thought I would be OK, but AJ opened the first box and I immediately burst into tears. So we just packed it all up in new boxes and put it in storage, it was too much to deal with this week. Plus, moving house while 15 weeks pregnant is bloody tiring. I don’t recommend it!

Then to top it off, I’ve had one of the worst weeks at work that I have ever had. Let’s just say that the countdown to maternity leave is on… 5 months left…

Oh well, at least baby is doing fine. That is the main thing.

Miss anything: Sleep and my apartment. 

Movement: Nope, not feeling anything.

Food cravings: Nothing in particular. I did eat a lot of dumplings before I moved out of the city and into the country this week. Yum.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Still AJ sucking on mints in the car. I can’t take it!

Gender: ???

How’s your mood: Ha ha… Obviously I am a bit tired and emotional this week.

Looking forward to: Our townhouse being built and being able to set up our new house and the nursery. Hurry up!!!

The Bump: Still can’t see much happening, but I can feel the bump a bit when I lay down, it just feels kind of harder than normal.

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