Week 22 – Day 4

I was talking to a colleague at lunch today who has a friend who’s also pregnant. She commented on the fact that I’ve booked a trip to Ireland in September, asking if I’m not worried about stuff going wrong. Got me thinking a bit about attitude. She said her friend is panicking and worrying about everything and anything that could potentially happen, even though it hasn’t happened yet.

I know I’m quite an optimistic person by nature, sometimes over optimistic. But it hasn’t really crossed my mind to plan for things as if though it wouldn’t work. What would be the point in that? Some people have the mindset of “everything that can go wrong will go wrong” with the goal to have a plan of action when the bad stuff happens. Maybe I’m naive or unprepared, but I’m pretty sure IF anything was to not go according to plan, I could handle it when it happens. It doesn’t make sense to me to walk around worrying about all the potential horrors of pregnancy… cause what if they DON’T happen? Then I would have worried for nothing, and not enjoyed the times that did go well.

Is it just me? I mean, I’m a firm believer in planning in general and to be prepared for the baby. And I’m very much aware that things may not be this easy in a month, or two or three…. but as long as it’s all good, it’s all good right?

Week 22 – Day 3

Today was the first time someone asked me if I’m pregnant! Haha, pretty brave right, and I have to give it to her, very subtly handled. She came up to me when we were both heading into the office.. “Cata, can I ask you a bit of a personal question and sorry in advance if I’m wrong… but are you pregnant?”. I answered truthfully straight away rather than acting offended like I’d planned to. But to be fair, out of all the people, she would have found it funny!

We’re officially in month number 6, and baby should pass the half kilo mark this week! Time moves quickly and slowly all at the same time. I can’t wait to hang out in Malmo next week šŸ™‚

Me and Dave met up with a girl I know from London on Saturday. She lives in Rotterdam now and is also preggo, a week behind me, and it’s nice to know that when I’m off work before the baby comes I’ll have someone to hang out with. She’s very similar to me in the sense that she’s not feeling over emotional about the whole thing. We spend a lot of time talking about bonding with the baby, and how neither of us feel that “super connection” that people keep talking about. I wrote about this earlier on in the pregnancy but will follow up, as I think it’s worth talking about.

 

Week 21 – Day 0

Something I’ve learned about myself from being pregnant is that I’m actually quite good at taking it easy and not worrying. My initial thoughts when describing myself is that I like to plan things and have stuff under control, and when I imagined what I would be like as pregnant I thought it would be a lot harder to not know, and to worry about stuff. But having gone more than half way through now I can honestly say that I haven’t freaked out or worried about much at all. Yes, there are a million rules to follow, and yes I do wonder if everything is ok in there. But I’ve been quite good at trusting my gut instinct, and to not listen to all the “good advice” out there. I’ve taken things at my pace, not compared (too much), and have just accepted that if things feel ok, then most likely they are!

It might have helped quite a bit that I’ve had a super straight forward pregnancy so far, and that everything has been on track. But I’m actually really proud of myself for just letting things be, and accepting that I don’t know, and don’t have to know everything!

Week 17 – Day 4

We had our first daycare visit today, as our midwife recommended that we start and sign up early to make sure we get a place where we want. Before I walked in we’d talked about timing and things like that and agreed that at 6 months I’d start going back to work and we’d do maybe two days a week of childcare. It’s so expensive here so just two days would cost us around 600 euros per month! Anyway, after seeing the place today and talking to the staff I feel like I never want to leave my child in the care of others.

I don’t know why, but looking at the little babies in there it just felt wrong to the core that they were not with one of their parents. Now don’t get me wrong, I understand that for some people there is no choice financially, and it’s not like parental leave here is generous… that’s a whole issue on it’s own. Also, there was nothing actually wrong with the place itself. Plenty of staff that are well trained, small separated groups and it felt safe and all that… but something about it just really hit me in the wrong way.

When a child is still that young doesn’t it need the immediate physical closeness to an adult who is not distracted by other things? Doesn’t it need an actual parent who loves it and care for it, and give it their attention…? We both walked out of there just feeling like “no” not for us. But then we’re stuck in the situation of, can we actually survive on one salary for 6-9 months? How much would we need in savings to live? How would it work with our employers, considering most mothers are back in work in 3 months, and most fathers don’t take any leave at all… and then we turn around and say we want 6 months each..? How forgiving and flexible would they be?

Much to think about, but it still feels like all other things like career and jobs are less important then the welfare of your own child.

Week 10 – Day 2

The discussion about pre-natal testing continues at home. I think we’re going to not get the tests. For my part I don’t see the point. They can test for three things, out of an endless list of things that could possibly go wrong (not that I think that anything will go wrong). And I still argue that knowing wouldn’t change anything… so why stress over it. I’m sort of too tired to write all the pros and cons down, but let’s just say that we’ve spent many many hours discussing this at home. And Dave being a scientist thinks that all knowledge is good. I’m not sure I agree…

I am really looking forward to the ultrasound on Friday though. I’m struggling now tho actually imagine that there’s something in there. I’ve sort of come to terms with how I’ve been feeling without grasping that there’s a real reason for feeling this way… does that make sense? It’ll be nice to get confirmed that there’s actually something in there causing all this hassle for me. Plus we’ll have a little picture of Justin! And we’ll hear his heart ( I hope!!). Three more days!

Week 8 – Day 6

Hello šŸ™‚ two days with parents here and I’m exhausted! Been sick for several days in a row now, not a trend I’d like to continue. Tomorrow we enter week 10, double digits and at the end of next week we’re on quarter of the way through!

The meeting with the midwife went super well, and she was really nice and relaxed and explained everything perfectly. I think it helps me a lot that they generally have such a relaxed attitude towards everything. It means that I also keep calm about stuff. One thing that got brought up that neither me or Dave had thought of before is the pre-natal testing that they offer. It’s up to us whether we want them or not, and she said about 50% of couples do chose to get it done.

Basically they take blood samples and analyse for chromosome variations, like Downs syndrome and some more rare things. The thing is…. for our age and medical history the odds are super super low, and if it turns out that the likelihood is high… then what? The midwife said that couples who get the tests done have already decided that they would abort the baby if something was wrong… but I’m not sure that I would? It’s such a morally sensitive issue to me. If you abort because of a likelihood of Downs, is that not the same as saying that people with Downs syndrome has less of a right to life?

If we’re not gonna change our minds about having the baby either way, then what benefit does knowing have? I’m very confused about the whole thing… But got another 10 days to figure it out, before the next meeting, and regular blood tests and the scan!

Will take a first belly pic tomorrow!

Week 6 – Day 5 (confessions)

As much as I know that future me will have a different opinion, I’d like to write this down just to remember how it feels now. When me and Dave first started talking about having a family, the important questions to answer were whether we felt we were ready or not, and whether we felt like we were at a point in life where we could sacrifice a little of our freedom for the sake of a child. We eventually reached the conclusion that there was never going to be an “optimum” time to do this, and that the “relinquishing” of certain freedoms would be something that we would adjust to and make the best of either way.

With that said we started being slightly more careless with protection, and then before I could think twice about it I’d missed my period. I know that some people try for years, and some couples really long to have a family and can’t wait to become parents. Some people feel like it’s their calling in life to raise children. Well, let me say with 100% certainty (now that I’m pregnant) that that isn’t me… and it’s really got me quite confused.

On TV and in films, and when you hear people talking about having a baby, everyone is so excited and happy and filled with euphoria, and they describe it as if a missing part of them has been filled. I still feel no epic joy about this, I still haven’t been hit with a sense of euphoria, and to be honest, I don’t feel particularly strongly about this embryo that’s growing inside of me (future me might disagree entirely, but please don’t judge). I wonder if more people feel this way, and if what we’re “told to feel” is this cotton candy dream in the same way that people portray their perfect lives on Instagram?

It’s not that I don’t care at all, I want the child to be healthy, and I’ve obviously adjusted my life in such a way to risk minimum harm to it. But I wonder if that’s because I’m just a little bit selfish and want to make MY life easier, as it’s in my mind still an extension of me.

On top of that, me being me, and not thinking things through in its entirety… whenever we did talk about this family stuff, it never really hit me or occurred to me that I would have to live through the 9 months of pregnancy. I know that sounds really stupid (and obviously IĀ knew that I would have to do it), but I never thought about all the ways in which the 9 month waiting period would impact my life. The question always revolved around whether we could handle a baby – once it was here!

So here I am, pregnant and slightly nauseous, and not quite knowing if how I feel about it is appropriate or not. Or if it’s even ok? Or if it’s going to change…