Keep Calm and Move House!

Tonight is the last night in my houseshare …. I’m sitting in bed looking at a rather empty room, awaiting the removal van early tomorrow morning. I took possession of my lovely flat last Friday, and this week has been busy getting new carpets laid, stripping wallpaper and suchlike. Actually, my Dad has done most of the graft whilst I’ve been at work … for which I’m eternally grateful, as DIY has never been my forte, preggers or not! I’m really looking forward to making it home for baby boy and I, and hope I manage to sleep tonight in anticipation of tomorrow’s adventures. I can’t believe I’m a pregnant home owner, writing budgets and talking knowledgeably about underlay and economy 7 boilers.

Proper grown up or what?

Baby boy must be excited about the move too, as he has been rather hyperactive the past few days. I feel more and more like a beached whale, but the new flat is next to a large park, so I have plans for brisk walks. My thighs are ridiculous. Ridiculous I tell you! Wibble wobble wibble wobble …

It is 9.36pm on a Friday and I’m about to fall fast asleep, for the last time in this bed. The bed in which my little chap was conceived … the houseshare which has provided much fun and laughter this year. Now for the next chapter … await the photos and tales of life at Wellington Court.

The Pregnancy Police

I had never shown much interest in pregnancy before conceiving. I haven’t bought any preggers books because so much of the “pregnancy culture” is nauseatingly syrupy [not to mention judgemental]. The least I know the better; I realise childbirth will hurt, but I presume women have been doing it for rather a long time. I’ve got up, gone to work as normal, and worried most about my thunder thighs. Obviously I’ve kept my midwife appointments, and have chatted to like-minded friends who have children …. but pregnancy isn’t an illness. It should be an exciting time, a relaxing time, the beginnings of a remarkable journey.

What I’m getting to, is the current news concerning drinking in pregnancy and the legal case criminalising women who are knocking back bottles of vodka a day. I don’t think anyone in their right mind would say this level of drinking is acceptable; it is selfish, abusive, and will obviously have severe repercussions. HOWEVER, let us not confuse heavy irresponsible drinking with the odd glass of wine or  Guinness, and condemn every pregnant woman with a wine glass in her hand. There is NO evidence that one or two glasses of wine a week harms a foetus. NO evidence. Nowhere. Indeed, one study has shown that women who consumed one or two glasses a week produced more intelligent offspring. If you choose not to drink during pregnancy, fine – but don’t judge those who partake of the odd glass. Prior to pregnancy I had a glass of wine every evening whilst getting supper ready. I enjoy wine, I find it relaxing, and have Mediterranean friends for whom this is the daily practice, pregnancy included. My small glass of wine twice a week is most welcomed; and I have no fears this will damage my baby boy, who is currently somersaulting inside me.

I had no idea how militant the pregnancy police had become. Apparently I’m not supposed to sleep on my back, eat runny eggs, clean my house, swim too far, run too fast, sit on new sofas, ride horses, lie in hot baths, eat too much fish, or generally behave in any way which doesn’t reflect my sole occupation in life as foetal host. Absolutely bloody ridiculous. My mother, who gave birth to me in 1982, wasn’t aware of any of these stipulations, and somehow got through the whole experience without being arrested.

Having spent many months over several years working at a street clinic in Calcutta …. I can assure you that it is entirely possible to get through pregnancy without reading glossy alarmist drivvle; to deliver a healthy baby despite appalling conditions. Our own grandmothers delivered their children at home, no epidurals to yell for, and no nonsense.

If I had a horse to ride at the moment who I knew and trusted, I would most definitely still be riding. If I happen to fall asleep on my back, I trust my body to move itself during the night if it’s uncomfortable. If I’m craving some tuna, I have no guilt at eating a tuna sandwich [yes, with shop mayonnaise! Gosh!!]. I will not lie in a luke warm bath ….

Have I ranted for long enough now? This bump protruding from my stomach is not an open invite to comment on my life choices. Nor is it an invite to touch it.

Have a super Friday!

It SNOT funny

unborn-children-quotes-7It seems utterly incomprehensible that it was a sunny Friday in June when I found out I was preggers. How is it November already? People say you don’t get any signs of pregnancy until after a missed period … but I knew something was up … my mouth tasted like I’d been chewing pennies all night, and bananas didn’t taste like bananas anymore. I haven’t had a cup of tea since mid June, and overnight something agonising happened to my breasts. We had someone coming to view a spare room in my house-share at 6pm. I went to the Co-Op after work for a test … the traffic was bad on the way home. I got in, ran upstairs to the bathroom, peed on stick, and straight away the blue cross appeared. I remember sitting there with my knickers around my ankles thinking, WOW … this is serious. My hands were shaking, and before I’d washed them the doorbell rang. Needless to say the poor chap who came to view the room probably thought I was totally bonkers [he didn’t take it]. As soon as he left I went to Tesco and bought another two tests … both confirming the first. I bought two more before I went to the GP to break the news. Memories of peeing on sticks.

That night I lay in bed, my hand pressed against my flat stomach [it was flat, once] … reassuring the little life within it, that whatever happened “it” was wanted and would be loved; that a whole life of fun, love and adventure lay ahead. I knew the coming months wouldn’t be easy. I knew there would be judgements and anger – this wasn’t a planned pregnancy – the father and I are not together and were not “together” at the conception [well, obviously we were together – I’m not the Virgin Mary … but we weren’t in a relationship]. I knew life would never be the same again …. but as the day gets closer to getting the keys to my very own place … and as the weeks fly by and my belly grows, I know we will be okay. When I saw that wriggling baby boy on the screen at the 20 week scan, it felt like he was the only important thing in my world. A little boy, kicking and somersaulting in the safe confines of my womb.

It was a grey weekend, and I have a cold … I did very little other than drink honey and lemon, beat my Dad at Scrabble, read a book, and reassure my Labrador that the fireworks aren’t going to kill him. Today I’ve taken my germs to work and acquired a Rudolph-esque nose. Whenever I sneeze and cough [which is quite often!] baby boy kicks as if to say, “Oi! Stop it, you’re disturbing me”!! Seriously though, where does all the snot come from? It’s immense.