That other thing I’m growing

I’ve been a bit reluctant to post about my pregnancy.  I’m used to keeping my private life relatively private, because I have a public life. And also I’ve been paranoid that I’ll blog about it, and then it will all go horribly wrong and I’ll have to deal with not only my own grief, but the sympathy of strangers. I actually wrote this post a week ago, but wanted to wait until we’d had our 20 week ultrasound and checkup before posting, just in case. Anyway, people seem to be interested, so here I go.

It took us exactly one year to get pregnant. In the end, we were using an app called Glow (which I highly recommend) to track my cycle, along with OPKs and temperature charting. I honestly don’t know if any of those things helped, but they certainly made me feel more in control.

The pregnancy has been thankfully uneventful. No real morning sickness to speak of – just exhaustion and some mild nausea. Oh, except for the one time I nearly fainted in front of a class of Year Nine girls and had to be sent to sick bay. The first few months of pregnancy aren’t fun. Even though I wasn’t sick, I was pretty useless because of exhaustion and paranoia that the little bean wasn’t going to stick.

At my first ultrasound (8 weeks), I was told that I had endometriosis, on one ovary, and in a place called the Pouch of Douglas*. This came as no massive surprise to me. It explained A LOT (as well as making me feel totally vindicated that my periods always had been more painful than average). If you have to be informed you have a treatable but unpleasant medical condition, I recommend you try and swing it so it also comes with the good news that your baby is alive and healthy. It’s like being told you have a parking ticket, but that you also won the lottery. If the sonographer had told me she had to cut off one of my fingers, I still would have walked out of there with a smile on my face.

There are lots of unpleasant things about pregnancy. Heartburn, heart palpitations, headaches, dizziness, period-style cramping, sore boobs, sore back, constipation, trouble sleeping, a coccyx that always feels like you just fell over ice-skating. And I’m only five months. But then you see the little face on the ultrasound, and feel it turning over inside you. And that’s pretty special.

Yesterday we found out the gender. I’m not going to put it on here, I don’t know why. I’m happy to tell you if you want to know. Mj and I didn’t really mind either way, but we weren’t expecting to feel this weird simultaneous joy and grief. Because up to that moment, we both had two hypothetical babies in our heads – a little girl and a little boy. Like Schroedinger’s Baby. And although we could not be more excited about meeting our baby, we had a moment of sadness that one of the babies we imagined never really existed. It passed very quickly of course, and now everything feels MUCH more real. The baby feels like a person now, instead of just a concept.

Okay, back to the gardening.



*I KNOW. THE POUCH OF DOUGLAS. Useful for storing loose change and displaced endometrial cells. As my midwife said “it’s probably named after some dead guy who didn’t have one”. She was correct, I googled it. You have one too, unless you’re a bloke, then you have a Pouch of Ben.