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 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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Rut

I’m not sure if life is getting me down or if I am down and it’s making my life seem shit. What came first, the chicken or the egg? All I can say right now is that I feel like I am in a rut.

Work is just so hard, my house build has been delayed and I don’t know where I am going to live, this infertility stuff is doing my head in and I feel lonely without any family around. I feel overwhelmed and like I have nothing to look forward to right now.

I am starting to wonder if the fertility drug I have been taking, Clomid, is part of the issue because I just don’t feel like myself. I feel like I have severe PMS symptoms all of the time. I am turning into a horrible snappy bitch that I don’t recognise. I’m not sure if I can take the drug much longer or what that might mean for me.

I am really letting it all get to me and I am trying to suffocate the stress with food and alcohol. I am eating poorly, drinking too much and now my clothes don’t fit me anymore. It’s a vicious bloody cycle.

The one thing I can do to help myself is take better care of my health. Eating a diet of potato chips and red wine might feel good in the short term, but it’s obviously not helping. Even though we are heading into the Christmas season, I am committing to focus on better eating and cut down on drinking. I’m going to make choices that my future self will thank me for, even if my current self wants sugar and salt.

In all the darkness, here is the light, I became and aunty on 22nd October. Her name is Penelope Jennifer (Jennifer is after my mum) but we mostly call her Polly. I was lucky enough to be able to fly to Sydney when my sister-in-law went into labour and be there to give her cuddles right away. I can’t wait to see her again at Christmas, I miss her so much!

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My first meeting with my niece

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Proud grandparents

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Juggling baby and dog, no problem!

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2 weeks old (dimples!)

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Looking just like my mum and brother

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Angel

 

 

 

Valium and Netflix

I just realised that I have been in my ‘new’ job for 8 weeks now. It feels like 8 seconds and 8 years at the same time.

I’m not sure if I have ever worked as hard in my life as I have in this job. Or maybe I am just feeling old and tired? Actually, I think that might be it.

I don’t know if I have the energy to establish myself in yet another job. I just feel tired and like I have lost the drive I once had around my career. I was so happy during my 2 month period of unemployment and I miss that feeling a lot.

I think that being made redundant in my last job kind of changed me. I don’t feel bitter or angry about it, but I guess I just find it hard to trust that my hard work will be rewarded or even valued. It makes me wonder why I am killing myself in yet another job and where it will get me. See, I am getting old and cynical!

All of this work stress, even though it’s mostly been manufactured in my own head, has left me feeling particularly anxious lately. I feel overwhelmed by simple tasks (OMG I have to wash my hair…), I’m being snappy to AJ (Close the effing fridge door!) and I’m protective of my personal time (What do you mean you said we’d babysit your sister’s kids all day Saturday?). Thank god for Valium and Netflix.

Despite all of this, I have managed to stick to my healthy eating goals (for the most part). I find that often when I am in the eye of the storm I can stay focussed on eating well. The adrenalin from my anxiety keeps me going. It’s not until everything slows down that I completely crash and burn into a pit of chocolate wrappers. I am determined not to let that happen this time. I’m on high alert!

I should mention that there are some perks to my new job. My company has ties to my favourite football team, which has meant I got to spend some time with these nice guys (and a few others). Swoon.

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Me with Mitch Duncan and Tom Hawkins from Geelong Football Club