Hey Ho…..Let’s Go!

It’s probably about time I updated this, last time I blogged I was impatiently waiting for maternity leave to begin and preparing for the arrival of our little one. Fast forward 10 weeks and I am impatiently waiting for a good nights sleep. We are over the moon to be able to say that our gorgeous little (or not so little) boy Arlo Ramone arrived at 5:40pm on 3rd August, weighing in at a hefty 9lbs. I can’t blame him for ALL of the sleepless nights, a lot of them have been down to me just laying next to him staring. 

 

Approx 1 week old

 
As someone who had always been terrified at the thought of labour (not the best fear for someone going through IVF) I can now happily say I would do it all again. Though scared I had always said I wanted to attempt it sans pain relief, mainly to prove a point to my mother and P who laughed everytime I suggested this. However, after 2 hrs of contractions I had totally changed my mind and was open to anything…..anything more than the 2 paracetamol I was offered. 

I was induced at 1pm on the Sunday afternoon and with little progress had to stay in hospital overnight. The following day they gave me another pessary at 10am and told us to go and occupy ourselves on site for 6 hours. I don’t know about you but kicking about a hospital is not my idea of a fun day out so we rebelled and drove home to chill (shhhhhh, keep it on the downlow). We only live 5 minutes drive from the hospital so figured it would be ok. I’d literally made a cuppa and been forced to watch 5 minutes of Homes under the Hammer before I had my first contraction and we headed straight back in (nothing to do with the fact that I’m a wimp and already felt scared that we had broken the rules and gone off site). That cuppa was still where I left it 3 days later.

Once back on the labour ward I was told that the pains I was having were more than likely down to the pessaries, not contractions and that I would be checked 6 hours later (4pm) as initially told. Eventually P convinced them to check me an hour earlier and it turned out I was 9.5 cms dilated…so bang went the chance of any pain relief, apart from said 2 paracetamol and a few puffs of gas & air. I’m still convinced that the gas & air did nothing but am assured that I sounded out of it. So, to cut a long story short we now have an Arlo. 

The past 5 weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind to say the least and all of the cliches you hear throughout pregnancy are true. You do forget the pain instantly, you will never have felt love like it and you will never have been as tired…..but it is all worth it.

I’ll write more about our first month in the next couple of days now that I’m back into this blogging shiz but for now I’m kicking back with a large vino while he sleeps. Mucho love to everyone x

  

The Final Countdown

With only 11.5 actual working days left at work I feel like I can finally start counting down….although to be honest I’ve been doing that ever since I handed in the formal notification to HR. Getting ready for work is a bigger chore than going to work and I’m looking forward to some well-deserved lie ins, getting up for approximately 14 toilet visits per night really takes it out of you. I’m forever questioning why we didn’t install an en-suite when we renovated our house.

I’m hoping that once I am on maternity leave I become motivated to do some of this nesting I’ve heard about. I’m quite an obsessively tidy person when it comes to our abode and thought this part would be a breeze but even looking at the ironing pile makes me retreat to the comfort of the sofa and remote control. I’m trying to rope in my mother to help me nest, she assures me it’s an instinct you’re supposed to get and do yourself but I’ve explained she’s better at it than me. P.S. I’ll pay you in cuppas and biscuits if you’re reading this.

Put aside the exhaustion and the rising levels of discomfort it’s actually been really enjoyable of late. I had my ‘non baby shower style get together’ that I was adamant I didn’t want. I’m not a fan of the old nappy cake, and being the centre of attention puts the fear of god into me but I enjoyed a fab day out with family and friends (and received lots of lovely gifts). Stop press! I stayed out until 8pm, good going eh? Mind you, they stayed out until around midnight and got suitably mortz on my behalf so we all put in a good shift.

I also kindly offered (i.e was bribed by the promise of a Marks & Spencers voucher) to go along to assist medical students with their final exams. The midwife mentioned it at my last scan, said they needed a pregnant ‘lady’ for one of their sessions and casually mentioned that I had a lovely bump and should do it. Flattery (and said Marksies vouchers) will get you everywhere (I’ll do anything for a 2 Dine for £10 meal deal). It was quite surreal lying there while a conveyor belt of students came in one after the other to question me and have a fondle of my bump. I’d say a good 75% of them were quite hot though so I’m not complaining. A good day out and doing my bit for the NHS after they’ve done their bit for us.

More good news, we were signed off from being classed as high risk from our consultant and are now midwife led. I’ve still been allowed my late scans though just to check he/she is growing ok. The little chunk was 4lbs 10 at the 28 week scan, I thought that seemed huge but the midwife assured me that it’s the norm. So now we only have 5 weeks (hopefully) before meeting Little Pip. I’ve hit a point now where it really feels like time has slowed down and that I’ve been pregnant for years. I don’t suppose it helps that with IVF you find out you’re pregnant at the earliest of stages, combine that with the 6 – 8 weeks drug fuelled lead up then you are looking at the best part of a year….but as they say, good things come to those who wait. Now just need to wait for the mother (aka designated nester) to turn up with her feather duster and marigolds and all will be well.

24 weeks…when did that happen?

It’s been a while since I last blogged (2 months to be exact, according to WordPress). I thought it had been around 1 month max. I need to sit down and catch up on everyone else’s too, I feel like I’ve had no time lately. Just goes to show time does fly when you’re having fun….I do use that term loosely.

Many milestones have now been reached since my last blog. The biggest being making it to 24 weeks and viability this week. Finally I’m at the point where I feel I can relax and accept that we are going to have a baby.

Other milestones include;

* Becoming many pounds heavier……in terms of weight

* Becoming many pounds lighter…..in terms of money

* Lots of movement. It’s clear we have a pretty active baby (unlike its mam) it’s usually after a meal so obviously enjoys it’s grub (very much like its mam)

* Getting 1 month into my new job and starting to feel like I’m finding my feet….on the flipside I am extremely excited at the prospect of around 10 months maternity leave starting in 11 weeks time. Woohoo!

We have also bitten the bullet and finally purchased a pushchair/travel-system/buggy whatever it is you choose to call it (the Mama’s n Papas Armadillo Flip XT if you’re interested), along with a car seat and a new car to put it in. The baby has to travel in style after all…and it saved me a job of cleaning out the old one. We’ve also opted for the Chicco co sleeper crib for the early days and we now have the grand total of 4 x babygros. So you could say we’ve made a start on the preparations. I’ve stopped having anxiety attacks at the thought of going into Mothercare anyway so progress has been made. Although I did almost pass out in Mamas n Papas the other week (nothing to do with the total cost).

Since we have allowed ourselves to start buying stuff I have noticed a distinct lack of unisex options for newborns in the shops…..unless you’re a fan of cream or grey. To be fair I’m a massive fan of grey, as anyone who has been to our home will testify (most rooms are a shade of grey…not in that way ladies) but I’m constantly on the lookout for brighter, more vibrant options, mainly so they are not camouflaged against the paintwork and we can easily find him or her. Maybe I’m just picky as I’m still having the same struggles finding maternity wear for myself, I seem to spend most of my free time queuing up to return items that looked great on the model online but don’t quite work on me. Maybe I’m a weird shape as well as picky……who knows.

Milestones my OH would point out would probably be the increase in my complaining, it’s on another scale. I’d love to be one of those women who love/d being pregnant and embraced the changes with open arms. Don’t get me wrong, I couldn’t be happier and am super excited about the outcome but overall I don’t think me and pregnancy get on.

Thankfully now that we can feel it moving around it makes it all feel worthwhile but I do look forward to a time where I’m not downing more Gaviscon than water, lying on my left side to stop myself passing out and being able to sleep comfortably without firstly constructing my jigsaw of pillows.

Next steps are to start thinking about a birthing plan, I’ll get round to that once I’ve stopped distracting myself by pinning pretty nursery ideas on Pinterest. #priorities

16 weeks……time flies

As of today I’m 16 weeks & 3 days and apparently baby is the size of an Avocado. I’m finally feeling back to ‘normal’ after a brief relapse into nausea hell and exhaustion. I’m hoping that’s the hard bit over…..if we skip over thoughts of the actual birth. I can barely watch One Born Every Minute without feeling faint at the sound/sights going on. I need to man up and start looking at a birthing plan, but one step at a time. I had my 16 week appointment with the midwife yesterday, it all seemed a bit pointless to be honest. I thought I would get to hear the heartbeat for the first time but no, quick blood pressure test and the ceremonial handing over of my urine and I was out of there. Bit disappointing really. She didn’t even weigh me….and I’d worn my lightest clothes especially.

We finally ventured into the realms of shopping for the new addition this week. By we I mean myself and my mother, I think P is still wary of buying anything just yet but that’s what joint accounts are for aren’t they? 😉 Just kidding, I didn’t even buy anything in the end. Just pushing around a few pushchairs was overwhelming enough. I never knew so many options existed, up to now I’d planned to apply the same logic as I would when car shopping.

Me “Does it have a cup holder? Is it a nice colour?”

Salesman “Yes”

Me “We’ll take it”

I’m none the wiser to be fair, I’m going to force P into a trip soon so that he can take charge and look at the actual practical side of things, he’s good like that. To be fair I’m a bit scared of going back to Mothercare, some of the assistants wouldn’t be out of place in a car showroom. I think we were approached on average every 3 steps by someone asking if we needed help, wanted to look at a finance plan, wanted to attend a parenting evening. I’m all for good customer service but jeez take it down a notch ladies.

So, all quiet over here for now, I’m enjoying feeling good and am going to make the most of it while it lasts. I’ve even managed to incorporate some healthy food back into my diet, gone are the beige foods (for now) and we’ll ignore Thursday nights triple chocolate sundae. We’re hopefully going to start decorating the nursery this weekend….or rather clearing out the junk room. We’ve only been in our ‘new’ house for around 3 years but after renovating the whole place our smallest room has officially become the paint store/new fixtures that we haven’t put up yet store/space where junk goes to die room. I’m looking forward to having a good clear out, out with the old, in with the new(born) as they say.

Happy Days

Rejoice for the weekend is upon us. Not much has happened this week but I thought I’d share my particular highlights. It’s only a matter of time before I start banging on about my bits again so let’s just have some nice stuff for a while eh?

1) I managed not only a night out but a day AND night out (with a quick outfit change in between obvs). Spent the morning and afternoon at a christening and celebrating with friends, quickly followed by a wedding reception in the evening. I even stayed out until just after 10pm…..I KNOW, achieving what I thought was the un-achievable. I did leave in tears mind, but they were happy tears caused by friends being super nice about our news. I was due a cry anyway, it had been at least 21 hours since the previous one.

2) I’ve no idea what I was spouting on about at the time but I mentioned our impending son or daughter to OH and he panicked upon realising he’s going to be a dad. I’ve no idea what he’s been thinking he’s going to be for the past 14 weeks but he now says we have to grow up immediately. I’ve informed him that this will never happen!

3) It’s been a week since our NT scan and we’ve heard no news. They said if was high risk we would be contacted within 3 days. I’m taking this to mean that we’re in the clear and can start to chill for a while. No news really is good news.

4) I’m finally starting to develop a bump (rather than bloat) and as a result I have purchased my 1st two pairs of maternity jeans. I haven’t tried them on yet so may be jumping the gun a bit but I’m very excited about the prospect of having alternatives in my wardrobe. I’m already sick of the sight of black leggings…..it was a short lived affair.

5) Not only have I ventured into the world of maternity clobber this week but I also had my 1st morning sickness based “real life vom” tmi??? I’ve only recently gotten my appetite for cooking back and thought I’d knock up a curry from scratch, 30 mins in OH had to take over whilst I stared down the toilet bowl for while. I’m pretty happy about it though, now I feel like I’m actually going to be a mother. I’m still not growing up though!!!

Oh and one not so great thing……still no glow! How long before I can sashay around looking all radiant and elegant like Blake Lively instead of putting on 12 layers of Bare Minerals each morning just to look alive, is it that much to ask? xoxo download

What. A. Week!!!

So, I’m pregnant, have I mentioned that? AND now I have a new job! I don’t want to jinx things but I still can’t quite believe how well everything is turning out. I don’t want to be a negative Nancy but after years of infertility struggles I’m just not used to things going right. Suffice to say, I’m exhausted and overjoyed that it’s Friday. A quick breakdown of the weeks highlights so far;

  • 2 x job interviews (not necessarily a highlight but the outcome certainly was)
  • Our 12 week scan (AMAZING….but freaky)
  • A job offer!!! (Nuff said)
  • A successful negotiation with the HR department to leave my current role early and still get 100% of my redundancy pay (I should think so after 11 years of hard graft, ahem)
  • Another 12 week scan as baby refused to stay still for the 1st one, so they had to have another attempt at taking the nuchal fold measurements (achieved on this occasion)
  • Announcing our pregnancy (finally feels real)
  • Discovering my new found love for pickled onions (I’ll never look back)

So, all in all it’s been pretty full on…especially on the pickled onion front. We have a healthy baby bouncing around (literally) inside, it’s no wonder I’m knackered! In between all this excitement I had the dreaded issue of letting my new employers know about my ‘current situation’. Being an honest person (yeah, yeah I know I didn’t mention it at my interview) I wanted to tell them sooner rather than later. I braved it before accepting my offer and I couldn’t have asked for a more understanding and welcoming response. My current team have been fab too. I don’t want to get all soppy but I’m truly thankful for everything that’s happening right now. It’s only now that I’m starting to take everything in and can finally start to feel relaxed about the future….once the screening test results are in. Can a pregnant lady (I use that term loosely) ever relax???

I’m starting to think this blog is a good luck charm, I feel like bloody Noel Edmonds banging on about that cosmic ordering shiz.

Happy Friday y’all!!!

Gis A Job!

I haven’t been very prolific on here recently. I have been writing lots….mainly personal statements declaring how bloody marvellous I am, in the hope that someone will take me on when my job role is made redundant at the end of March. It’s a good job I’m pretty relaxed as early pregnancy and being faced with unemployment isn’t the best of combos. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change it for the world, but talk about awkward timing. Still, that’s infertility for ya! Anyway, if I think about the money I’m saving on Sauvignon Blanc then we should have a fair bit put away by the time the new addition comes. 😉

The thought of interviewing is quite daunting, luckily the bump/bloat can still be hidden relatively well at the moment so that shouldn’t give things away and what’s a little white lie between me and a potential employer?  I also worry about getting a job offer, would I tell them at that point or would I wait until my (rapidly increasing) bottom was placed firmly on my swivel chair? Any wise words from people who have been in a similar situation would be much appreciated.

Apart from employment woes not much has been going on. There’s been the usual ‘ ugh, I’m sick of feeling sick symptoms’ quickly followed by the ‘WHY HAVE MY SYMPTOMS DISAPPEARED’ panic. I’ve now learnt to enjoy those rare days/hours. I’m waiting patiently for my first midwife appointment on Thursday morning and hopefully we’ll get a date for our 12 week scan. Then I can really start to worry again.

I also made my debut on the airwaves?!?! this week. I was kindly invited to take part in an interview for an episode of The Fertility Podcast, a brilliant online resource offering hope and advice to people trying to conceive.  You should check it out…..not just the one featuring me obvs. There’s a great back catalogue of podcasts on the website featuring interviews with fertility experts like Zita West and Emma Cannon as well as real life stories with people like little ol’ me.

You can download the podcasts here and can follow them on Twitter https://twitter.com/fertilitypoddy

Right, those applications won’t write themselves! Hmmmm, I wonder if the midwife needs a PA??? Please send positive job based vibez!

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