The baby arrived….

…quite a time ago actually! She was 7 weeks on Saturday and every week I’ve thought ‘I must update my blog’ and have never managed it. After wanting a baby for so long, and having been surrounded by EVERYONE I KNOW having a baby I pretty much knew what to expect – the tiredness, the wonder, the crying, the fantasticness, the tiredness – but what I was not prepared for is how there is not a single minute in the day. Seriously, the days whizz by in a blur of feeding, changing, burping, playing, trying to rest, trying to put a wash on, feeding, changing etc. Add to this that somehow I’ve managed to plan a hen-do for 16 girls to go away for the weekend in this time it hasn’t left a second to update you all.

So, here you go – the birth story!

I started getting pains on Thursday 31 May and very slowly progressed with contractions coming and going over a couple of days – they would mainly come when I laid down to sleep and go when I got up! So between Thursday morning and Saturday I got about 3 hours sleep. In total. By about 2am on Saturday they had been getting stronger and closer together and I decided to go to the midwife led centre as I was pretty sure I was in established labour. We drove the half hour journey to the hospital, my sister met us there as she was also my birth partner and the midwife examined me. I was 2cm. 2. I cried. I felt like a total idiot for thinking I was further along and pretty scared about how much more painful this was going to get since I was in a lot of pain, already exhausted and only 3cms. They gave me some codeine and sent me home where I managed to get another hour or so sleep as the contractions had slowed again. 

When I woke up they were getting stronger and stronger and at 4pm my waters broke after the day of trying to get comfy and rest between contractions (and failing at both). When we’d been at our NCT classes the teacher had said that some people only get a trickle rather than a big ‘sploosh’ and since then DH had been saying he wanted to see a ‘sploosh’! He wanted the drama! So when they did break I just stood in my living room saying “sploosh, sploosh”!! And sploosh they did – thank god we have wooden floors!

Just after she was born

Just after she was born

Luckily they did sploosh as we noticed they were green tinged and so when we phoned the hospital they told us to go to the delivery ward, rather than the midwife led unit. We arrived at 5pm, was examined and I was 4cm and they confirmed I had meconium in my waters. I couldn’t believe I was still only 4cms…how?? I was in so much pain and I’d been going for so long. I asked right then for an epidural as I was convinced I still had hours and hours to go if it had taken so long to get to 4cm.

The anaesthetist was in an emergency C-section but I was told he’d come once finished and had the gas and air whilst waiting. By 6.30pm I was 6cm dilated and by 8pm I felt the intense urge to push. The midwife didn’t think I should be trying to push, examined me and then changed her mind! I was fully dilated and had beaten the anaesthetist! I think the idea that an epidural was coming got me through the pain and enabled me to do it on the gas and air.

Sophia was born 40 minutes later at 8.42pm on Saturday 2nd May (same day as the Princess, although our princess is better, obvs), 7lb 2oz of perfect. It was such an intense and amazing experience. The pushing was seriously exhausting and I did tear but by that point I really didn’t care!

Daddy cuddles

Daddy cuddles

Since she arrived our lives have been turned upside down in the best way. Its exhausting and often tough but so very amazing. Especially since she started smiling a few weeks ago – that makes the sleep depravation a lot easier to take!

It was worth it. The years of struggle, the tears, the injections and tests and dildocams. The failed IVF rounds (although it was a ‘natural’ pregnancy in the end), the month after month after month of negative pregnancy tests. It was all worth it to have her in my arms.

Her first smile

Her first smile

Maternity leave

Well here I am, 38 weeks pregnant. It seems crazy that I’ve made it this far, that there is a real and proper person inside of me rather than a funny little alien thing! Because there is definitely a person inside me and I’m pretty sure it thinks the way to get out is to kick its way through my ribs!

It’s been so long since I updated my blog. Mostly because I’ve been so busy. The last 6 weeks or so of work were so incredibly busy that I kept thinking “I’ll update the blog when I’m on maternity leave”. I’ve now been on maternity leave for nearly 4 weeks (I had a load of annual leave to use up so have had a nice long lead up to D-Day) and I feel like I’ve been even busier!

For some reason we thought it was a great idea to do a load of home improvements in the 2 months before I’m due. So since February we’ve replaced our boiler and all windows and doors, had our hallway redecorated, decorated the nursery (still not finished) and replaced some of our carpets! It’s been total chaos and there has been dust everywhere, which has driven me crazy. But we’re finally close to finishing and by the end of this weekend hope to have the house pretty much back to normal.

Although I’ve been off work, so in theory I should be able to do lots of jobs, being this pregnant is pretty debilitating. I’ve found it really frustrating how little I can get done each day before I have to have a 2 hour sit down to recover. This has not been helped by my slipping down a few of my uncarpeted stairs this week resulting in a massive purple bruise on my bum and a painful, swollen foot that I can’t really walk on. Grrr. I just want to finish everything so I can laze around and relax before the baby comes but can’t relax until everything is done!

People keep asking me if I’m nervous about the birth…and so far I haven’t been as I’ve been focused on getting everything done. But in the last few days where I’ve been forced to sit down more I’ve been thinking about not just the birth, but the actual part of having a baby.

Of course most of me is just incredibly excited by the idea that I will finally get to meet my baby. That I will hold him/her in my arms – the moment I’ve waited so long for. But I don’t think I’d be normal if I didn’t have my anxieties about it too – what if I’m a useless mother? What if I do something really wrong and hurt the baby? What if the baby is really sick? What if we get one that cries all the time and I can’t handle it?….What if I just hate motherhood? I’m pretty sure I won’t seeing as it’s all that every fibre in my being has wanted for the last 5 years, but there is that chance that I just bloody hate it!

It’s pretty scary times. But mostly just an amazing time. I do feel so incredibly lucky and despite the aches and pains of being pregnant I know I’ll also miss that a lot too. I’m not sure I’m ready to share my baby with the rest of the world. At the moment its just the 2 two of us really, and we both know what we’re doing, we’re both contented with where we are but its all about to change. And I already know I don’t know how much life will change! Fertiles must get really freaked out by this….imagine thinking about/wanting a baby for 1 or 2 months and then getting pregnant! In a crazy crazy way, although I obviously wish I hadn’t had the painful journey to get here, at least I’ll (hopefully) be a little more prepared for it – despite my fears and anxieties.

Third trimester

I’ll be 28 weeks on Sunday, and as some books/websites say 27 weeks is the start of the third trimester, and others say its 28 weeks I’m officially declaring myself as Third Trimester since I’m in the middle of the 2! It does seem a bit weird to me that there is this confusion as to when it starts. I asked my midwife (I say my midwife – I haven’t actually seen the same one twice yet in 5 appointments) at my last appointment, thinking that surely the NHS would have picked a week to go with, but she didn’t know.

Let’s just give that a minute to sink in.

The MIDWIFE couldn’t tell me the most basic information about being pregnant. She didn’t even say “hmm there’s a bit of debate as to whether its 27 or 28 weeks” she just looked at me blank-faced and said “ohhh hmmm when is that….hmm I’m not actually sure…..hmm I guess just take 40 weeks and divide it by 3”. Yeah, thanks lady.

So, what does the third trimester bring? Well, so far I haven’t had any extra hideous symptoms that can go with ‘phase 3’, but since I’m half-in-half-out I’m sure there’s some treats to come. Not that I’ll really give a shit if there are….I still can’t get my head around people that moan about this. It’s bloody marvellous and quite frankly a miracle and I count my lucky stars every day.

Mostly the third trimester has brought realisation, and then fear that:  a) I am properly pregnant and it’s here to stay, b) there will, in the rather near future be a baby and c) that I’m going to have to push that baby out my veejay. And that’s pretty terrifying!

I’m starting to have to think about my ‘birth plan’ and basically I have 2 choices – I either go to the Dr led hospitaly, no frills but drugs on tap place or I go to the midwife led, birthing pools and whale music but no drugs place. Personally I’m not sure why the hell I can’t have birthing pools, whale music with a doctor and some drugs on the side but apparently I can’t. It’s one or the other. But since the midwife can’t tell me when the freakin third trimester starts I’m thinking probably not the best thing to trust these people to deal with the whole thing on their own.

Also, having spoken to a few people who have given birth in the last few weeks they all say the same – take the drugs, for God’s sake take the drugs!!


I am now 24 (almost 25) weeks pregnant. This is a huge milestone for me. The whole way through this pregnancy I’ve been thinking “if I can just get past Christmas, if I can just get to 24 weeks it’ll mean I’m almost definitely having a baby”. And now it’s here. Of course there are still things that can go wrong but we’d be very very unlucky for that to happen…and surely I’ve had my fair share of bad luck?!

The other milestone was getting to Christmas, getting through Christmas without it being heart wrenchingly painful. Last year was just so awful that when we were booking our honeymoon to Sri Lanka (before shock BFP) we booked to fly on Christmas day to make sure we would avoid having to go through it all again. We cancelled the trip – 3 weeks backpacking around Sri Lanka at 5 months pregnant was not going to work – and instead actually enjoyed Christmas for the first time in years. I thought many times of my wonderful blog/twitter friends still struggling in the trenches of the hideous IF war over the Christmas period and hope it wasn’t too painful for you.

Now we’re past Christmas and well into the new year I’ve pulled my head out of the too-worried-to-plan sand of the first part of the pregnancy and headlong into oh-shit-there’s-so-much-to-do phase! I’m basically freaking out. About everything.

We’ve started looking into what type of pram we should get. Jesus. Christ. The choice is too much….the price is waaaay too much! I’ve spent hours and hours online going round and round in circles reading a million reviews for a million different prams, all of which have reviews saying “this is the best thing ever” next to ones that say “its evil and dangerous”. Asking friends doesn’t seem to help either, it just confuses the process even more.

The conflicting information is not just limited to prams either. I thought I should probably buy some books about babies and what to do with them as, whilst I know A LOT about getting pregnant, and even a bit now about being pregnant, I really know nothing about having an actual baby other than bits and pieces gleaned from my siblings and many, many friends that have kids. But even baby books are contentious and views on them conflicting. I’ve been told to read loads and pick the best bits from each one and to read none as they’ll just freak me out! And my goodness do people get het up about different people’s opinions to childrearing!!

Also, looking on all these sites, forums etc reminds me what bloody morons (most some) fertiles can be. Seriously, they make me want to stab myself in the eye. Which is probably recommended and disapproved of in a forum somewhere.

So any advice on baby books/prams/anything else I might need is welcome!

For those still struggling, I hope so much that 2015 brings you happiness, in whatever form that comes in xxxx

Livin on a Prayer

“Woahhhhhhh we’re half way there, WAAAAOOOHHHHHHH HOOOO livin on a prayer!”

This is my way of saying, I’ve hit 20 weeks! Half way. Would you Adam and Eve it?*

I’m actually in a state of disbelief that I’ve got this far. 20 weeks. I’m now officially out of the danger zone and into the ‘holy crap I’m pregnant’ zone. Last Saturday DH and I went for a private scan just to check out how the little monkey was getting on.

Wow. There has been an awful lot of growing going on. The private clinic (I say ‘clinic’ it was actually a weird little room with an ultrasound machine in it, but it did the job) used a 4D scanner so we were able to see the baby actually moving around. The last time we saw a 4D scan was at 11 weeks, just before the wedding and frankly it looked like a Nik Nak. But this time…..there’s an actual baby in there! He/she was wriggling around so much, constantly moving and rubbing its eyes, sucking its fingers. It was just incredible. I wish I could have one of those machines at home, I’d be watching all day. After about 10 minutes or so of us ohhing and ahhing monkey had obviously had enough of putting on a show, turned round and showed us its bum and wouldn’t turn back again. Ha! We get the message!

“Take my hand, we’ll make it I swear, WAAAAOOOHHHHHHH HOOOO livin on a prayer!”

Well this week, we feel less like we’re ‘livin on a prayer’ and a lot more like we’re going to make it. The scan has made us feel so much more confident in the pregnancy, and to add to that I’m now feeling movement every day which is such a reassurance.

We’ve started planning things. We’ve talked about names, and not even in a whisper but right out loud.

We’re going to have a baby.

This hit me yesterday when stood in my kitchen and I sobbed happy, happy tears. The whole time I’ve been pregnant I haven’t let myself go and properly cried or been overly happy about it because I’ve always been waiting for it to end. Enough now. It’s time to enjoy this.


* Sorry, not sure what’s wrong with me I’m a bit hyper today but really no excuse for going all mockney on you, on top of a Bon Jovi reference. For my non-British readers ‘mockney’ is the use of cockney phrases/accent when you’re really not a cockney. Whilst I do have a saaaaaafff (south!) east London accent, I’m definitely not a cockney!

The Club

I started this post 2 weeks ago and have been so busy with work and annoying things breaking (guttering, boiler, washing machine – the joys!) that I didn’t have time to finish it off and post it…..

Whilst last week was physically challenging with the occurrence of lightening cooch, this week has been emotionally challenging. On Sunday I went to my friend’s baby shower. It’s been a long time since I’ve been to one, and the last few I did go to reduced me to crying in the loos and sobbing on the sofa when I got home. I hadn’t really thought too much about it but before leaving I felt really anxious all of a sudden…was I really ready to be a room with all those mothers?

It turns out, I was not! I’ve always been quite a gobby person and whilst not over confident, and can be shy in many situations, I usually feel fairly comfortable…and able to fake it if not. But at the baby shower I just felt like I wanted the ground to swallow me up. All those mothers clucking away, making flippant comments about having babies. Whilst the comments and conversations did not cut as deeply as they would have done a few months ago, they still made me flinch. I had forgotten how much fertiles take it all for granted and all I could think of was my lovely twitter/blog friends that are still in the trenches of IF. I just sat there dumbstruck, not joining in, hardly talking. I just wanted out of there. I got home and cried on my sofa.

Then on Tuesday I started a pregnancy yoga class. I got lost on the way there, and was late and so again I was not really thinking about what the actual class would entail. I walked into a room of about 15 pregnant women deep breathing, and felt I’d had the breath knocked out of me. I was by far the ‘least pregnant’ of all these women and I just felt so out of place, like I didn’t belong there.

The teacher talked a lot about ‘your baby’ and breathing techniques/positions for birth…which makes perfect sense for a pregnancy yoga class. I don’t know why I hadn’t realised it would be like that, I guess I just thought it would be like a normal class but without postures that could be dangerous. Then for the last 15 mins of the class a former member of the group came in with her baby and talked about her ‘birth story’!! What the holy fuck?!

I guess I’ve just spent so long trying to get into this club that now I’m in it I feel like a fraud and that any day now someone is going to notice and revoke my membership in a hideous and bloody way. I feel like I need stay on the fringes and not get too used to being here.


So, now it’s a few weeks on and I went again to the pregnancy yoga class, which was a little less scary as I knew what to expect, and I felt less out of place. Maybe this is due to the huge amount my belly has grown! I’m feeling less nervous and more calm. I’m smiling more. I’m starting to allow myself to think about the future – the good version.

I think there are a few reasons for this, firstly being that I’m now 18 weeks and heading out of the Danger zone with each day. I know it could still go wrong, but in my mind if I can make it past 20 weeks it’s more likely that this pregnancy will not be like my sister’s. I have been reassured in the last few weeks with a midwife appointment and an obstetrician appointment, during both of which we heard a lovely strong heartbeat. I’m in love with that noise.

I was sent to see the obstetrician because of my sister’s history but after an hour and half waiting to see him he seemed rather puzzled as to why I was there….he kept saying “but you haven’t had any miscarriages, so I’m not sure what the risk factor is”. No mate, I haven’t had any miscarriages. But I’ve also never been pregnant so we’ve really got no idea what’s going to happen here do we, and after years and years of TTC and 4 rounds of failed IVF lets just keep an eye on it eh?!! Anyway, he’s sending me for bloods, I don’t think either of us are sure why but at least it keeps us all busy!

The final reassurance I’ve had is I think I’ve started to feel some movement…I’m not totally sure but every few days I get a funny bubbly feeling and I don’t think its wind. I like it. I want lots more please.

Finally, on Saturday I’ve got a private scan booked to see the little monkey, before having the NHS one at 20 weeks. At the moment I’m feeling calm about it and looking forward to it…I’m sure I’ll be a crazy mess of worry by Friday though!

The Danger Zone

Somehow, I’m now 15 and a half weeks pregnant. This has gone both ridiculously quickly and torturously slowly. Sunday started my 15th week with scary dull stabby pains in my left ovary area, accompanied by even scarier very sharp shooting pains down into my ..a-hem…well, clitoris/urethra (a sensation DH has since named ‘lightening cooch’).

This was understandably scary but after lots of googling/tweeting I’d tried to calm myself into realising that there’s  a lot of growing going on in there, and some of its bound to hurt a bit. The ovary pain had stopped by Monday but I still had ‘lightening cooch’ and thought it might be a urinary infection so went to the GP on Tuesday morning. The GP dipped a stick in my wee (I could fill a bath with sticks that have been dipped in my wee…although probably wouldn’t use my bath) and said I didn’t have a urinary infection as far as he could see but he’d send it off for culture. When I pressed him a bit on what exactly was causing lightening cooch then he was vague, made me lie down and pressed my tummy, said ‘hmmm’ a lot and gave me no answer.

So feeling slightly panicky, I drove home….hitting a parked car on the way. Awesome. It wasn’t exactly a ‘car crash’ as I was going about 5 miles an hour but I still managed to crunch their bumper and cause a general faff that these things cause. Ugh.

I got home and attempted to find a midwife to talk to. I haven’t yet had my first midwife appointment (its next week) so I called the hospital where I had my ‘booking in’ appointment. The receptionist told me that if I was really worried I should go to A&E as I was ‘too pregnant’ to go to the EPU. Helpful. With a rather wobbly voice I told her I actually just wanted to speak to someone. She gave me a number for a midwife assessment line. Perfect you might think. I called them and they said they only treat people who are over 20 weeks, but told me everything was ‘probably ok’.

Brilliant. So basically if you’re between 12 and 20 weeks you’re on your own – it’s A&E or nothing. And I didn’t think I was having a miscarriage right at that time, I was pretty sure it wasn’t the time to go and sit in A&E for 5 hours to have a Dr that knows very little about antenatal medicine prod me. But…I just wanted someone to say “ohhh lightening cooch, yes pregnant women get this all the time” or “hmmmm lightening cooch, never heard of that, could be worrying you should definitely go to A&E now”.

But they didn’t. So I sat on my sofa and sobbed. Then I called my mum and sobbed. By the time DH called me to see how it went at the Drs I was pretty much hysterical. He left work and came home. Bless him, I’m such a crazy person. Although, in my defence he worries probably more than me, so think him leaving work was as much due to his hysteria as mine.

Now you might think that this is all rather an over reaction to a few cramps and some shooting pains, and I should just stop bloody moaning because, I’m pregnant so what else really matters? And you’d probably be right. But right now I consider myself to be in ‘The Danger Zone’.* For most people, once they get past the 12 week mark they can relax. They’re obviously still nervous but the grip of fear and constant knicker-watch has lessened.

For me, hitting 15 weeks has ramped up my paranoia. Of course I was worried before, and hitting my second trimester was certainly a great feeling. But up until then I had, apart from the odd wobble, been relatively calm. But now I’m in the danger zone – my sister lost 5 babies between 16 and 20 weeks. At the time I was absolutely devastated for her, but now being 15 weeks pregnant I have so much more a realisation of just how horrific this would have been for her than my care-free early 20’s self did. And I’m so incredibly scared it will happen to me.

That’s not to say that I’m not still happy and excited and ever so slowly starting to think about this actually working out. I’ve even noticed DH and I starting to say ‘when’ rather than ‘if’. It’s just any sign of something slightly amiss sets off the dark thoughts and blind panic.

I’m hoping very much that my sister and I just have very different types of fertility issues – she could literally pick the right day of the month to have sex on and she would get pregnant, every time. Since it’s taken me 3.5 years, 4 rounds of IVF and a miracle conception to get this far, it’s got to be ok now….doesn’t it?


* Weeeelll-coooooomme tooooo the danger zone  …have been singing this all day. Now you are. You’re welcome. If you’re not, you’re too young to be reading my blog.Tom+Cruise+Top+Gun