‘Facebook official’ – bleeeuaagh

  

Since becoming pregnant I have been targeted- targeted! – by infantilising, weird baby talk. Pink websites telling me to ‘make time for me time’, comparing babies to fruit and reminding me not to ‘forget about hubby!’. It’s like being transported back in time. I’m almost 40 years old. I have a career. I have a Masters degree. I do not need to read about taking care of my husband’s needs in oversized Comic Sans font. He takes care of his own needs – he’s an adult human being.

I managed to find one website which is sensibly written by professional midwifery staff – the Tommys page. Most others (‘What to Expect’, ‘Bounty’ etc) are full of exclamation marks and make me want to punch my phone.

Anyway somewhat related to this is the need to go ‘Facebook official’. The fact that this is even a phrase, and therefore a ‘thing’, says it all really. It kind of makes me want to puke. I mainly hate Facebook, it’s full of humble bragging – perfectly edited  posts about someone’s yoga class, gifted children or expensive holiday. It’s self indulgent and frankly weird, nobody would put up with such ‘look at MEEE’ism in real life. #blessed incites rage. Yet it’s also strangely compelling – ooh look, Julie from sixth form has a new lawn mower!

SO – what is my point exactly. Well, husband and I have friends and family scattered all over the world. We are not going to be able to call everyone and tell them our news. It would be easier to post something on Facebook – but then I’m caving in to everything outlined in the paragraph above. It’s also a massive ‘in your face’ to all our contacts who would love to be pregnant but aren’t, for various private reasons of their own. Tough one. I’m going to think about it over the next few days. Maybe people don’t actually need to know? Maybe they really don’t care? Perhaps they would prefer to live in blissful ignorance, as we all used to in the early 90s. Whatever we decide to do, it will not involve comparing babies to fruit.

Advertisements

First Trimester, aka, There Will be Blood

Today I am 12 weeks and 1 day pregnant, which means I can almost wave goodbye to the first trimester. Yeah! Farewell first trimester, you terrifying, bloody nightmare!

We had our ‘Nuchal Translucency’ scan yesterday and I’m happy to report that everything is fine. Our twins have a 1 in 10,000 chance of having Downs or a similar chromosomal condition (muchas gracias, 21 year old donor) and both little dudes have the correct number of brains, arms, legs, noses, livers and hearts.

So, can I relax a bit now? Well yes, a bit. Statistically, our chances of miscarriage have significantly decreased now we’ve made it to week 12. However the bleeding is still there – a little bit every now and again – just enough to say ‘gotcha!’ every time I start to relax and feel blase. I’m still on knicker watch 24/7 but I think that’s just the way it’s going to be for the next 30 weeks or so. Well, it couldn’t just be easy could it? Nah. That’s life.

We have a meeting with our obstetrician, Dr K, tonight. I’m going to ask him if I can lighten up on the ‘pelvic rest’ a  bit now. I’d love to go back to yoga and hopefully be able to walk more than 20 minutes a day. I’m pretty sure husband would enjoy a bit of pelvic-action but I have a feeling that might be the last thing to go. Sorry husband.

I’ve been wondering what to do with this blog. I started it as a place to track my infertility progress (I refuse to say ‘journey’ even though I just said it). I know it must  be tough for some of my fellow IF’ers to read about my pregnancy. Personally I always felt glad when someone ‘won’ their battle and was curious to see what happened next, but I know that doesn’t apply to everyone. Infertility is a cruel mistress and I’m well aware that we just happened to get lucky – I’ve given up on the science of it all. Anyway, I’ve decided to keep this blog going in case there are people out there  interested in:

  • Donor egg pregnancy
  • Twin pregnancy
  • Pregnancy after 5 long, failed cycles of IVF
  • Pregnancy at the ‘geriatric mother’ age of 38
  • Pregnancy with Crohn’s Disease
  • A Mancunian/Maori pregnancy in a small flat in  London (haha)

 

 

 

10+5 wks – Ladies and Gentlemen we are Floating in Space

   
 
….the name of one of my favourite 90s albums and also what occurred to me when I saw these little dudes bobbing about on Thursday. Twin 1 (top) was doing karate kicks, waving and spinning around like he’s on the International Space Station. Twin 2 appears to have a bit less room and was sulking – didn’t move much until the sonographer poked him and he did the fetus equivalent of a ‘FFS!!!’ and started kicking and waving.

We went to a snazzy new place on Harley Street to get a Harmony Test done (blood test looking for chromosomal abnormalities) and they did a quick scan to make sure everything was OK beforehand. It was lovely to see. Both twins are measuring at exactly the right size and we heard their hearts pounding. We even saw their tiny little hands and feet – amazing! Nature is incredible. Two miniature human beings.

I’ve been bleeding on and off this week but nothing too bad. I like being back at work – I don’t like being an invalid. My boss has been great and agreed to cover a couple of European trips I had planned last week. She also encouraged me to work from home as much as I need to. Her support has really helped reduce my stress levels and I am very grateful. I like to think that I would do the same for anyone in my team who found themselves in the same boat. Girl power.

9+5 weeks pregnant – to move or not to move

We met our new obstetrician yesterday and he is  – NICE! Of course he’s nice. I think I had a progestodream* that he’d be bossy/arrogant/dismissive but I was completely wrong. He’s lovely and inspires complete confidence. Within a matter of minutes I was oversharing about my brown bleeding and constipation. Must be love.

Here are some of the things we learnt:

  • It’s very likely that I’ll need a C section – mainly due to twins, ongoing bleeding and my previous bowel surgeries
  • My official 40 week due date is 5th September, but most twins are born at 38 weeks or even before….so probably early/mid August in my case
  • As this is classed as a ‘high risk’ pregnancy I’ll need scans every couple of weeks and regular checks for pre-eclampsia and other nasties
  • The bowel surgery I’ve had for Crohn’s Disease means I’ll most likely need B12 injections and checks to make sure the twins are getting enough nutrients
  • As I have B negative blood, and my husband and the donor both have RhD positive blood, I’ll probably need an ‘Anti D’ injection soon. Especially because of the bleeding.

He did a quick ultrasound scan (my first abdominal one) and the babies are both looking good with strong heartbeats. Unfortunately the frigging SCH (sub-chorionic hemorrhage) is also still there. It’s like a pantomime villain – it pops up in every single scan. ‘It’s behind you!’ etc etc.

Anyway, he seemed relatively unconcerned with the SCH. The settee rest has certainly helped – when I’m doing nothing around the house the bleeding goes away. However it pops up again as soon as I walk anywhere….in the hospital yesterday, to the corner shop this morning. It’s brown blood but more than just spotting. Ladies who bleed – what did you do? Did you go back to work and try to get on with your life? Or did you ‘rest’ for weeks and weeks?

Our obstetrician says there is no evidence that bed rest helps. I’ve found people online who think it’s best to let the SCH ‘bleed out’, and there are others who think that rest is best. I have an understanding employer but I need to get back to work sooner or later. I have an office job so I think I’ll be ok….I’m planning to go back to work on Monday and just stay off my feet as much as possible. Obviously I’ll call him if the bleeding becomes red/heavy. Any advice welcome here. The bleeding is terrifying but it seems unavoidable.

Here’s the best thing of all….the icing on the cake….the cherry on top. He sympathised about the bleeding and we explained that it has certainly sucked, and we’re just desperate to make it to 12 weeks. He said ‘of course you’ll get past 12 weeks’. What? Nobody has said this to us thus far. A small comment but it gives us massive hope. Everything – apart from the bleeding – is looking good. For the first time I’m allowing myself to feel a bit optimistic about this pregnancy.

*Progestodream – weird, vivid, psychedelic dreams caused by progesterone supplements.