Then, my pregnancy started to get really interesting.
Not content with morning sickness, stretching, putting on weight and generally feeling a bit nackered, my body decided it wanted to act without my permission.
Seven weeks into pregnancy, I had a seizure.
What happened? I have no idea. What did it feel like? No clue.
I jumped in and out of consciousness in an ambulance and then a hospital.
What I know of the three (!) paramedics who attended; they were absolutely brilliant.
I can’t even remember where I came to properly. I remember a paramedic telling someone my details and that I had had a seizure. I’m so glad I had at least some presence of mind and didn’t say what I was thinking.
“No I didn’t.”
For once in my life, I shut up. And threw up. Alot.
When my husband called 999, he had told them I was pregnant and apparently a paramedic car was there within minutes. Closely followed by an ambulance that had been called off another job to come to us.
Those guys do such an amazing job.
I remember being in A&E with my husband beside me and the doctor asking me to give him a urine sample.
No bother, said I. My bladder, at least, had managed to behave during the seizure.
Off I went (not easy with a canular in your hand!) and then off he went with the wee bottle.
The doc came back and stated that I was pregnant.
This is definitely not the best way to get confirmation.
It was stupid o’clock so I was admitted overnight and let out early the next day. My husband, however, had to find his way out of the night exit and home without a car or a wallet.
Clearly, my subconscious decided it wasn’t getting enough attention…
“You’ve got such a glow about you!”
“You look great.”
“You look so slim!”
“You’re doing really well.”
Its all lies. I thought you should know.
I certainly didn’t feel glowing. Bloated and a bit sweaty maybe. But not like a gentle star winking in the night.
What does that even mean anyway? “Glowing”? What a load of nonsense.
I think the character of Phoebe from the American comedy Friends got it spot on with her response to the ‘pregnant lady glow’ when she said:
“That’s sweat. You throw up all morning, you will be glowing too.”
Absolutely spot on.
I may have been providing an Oscar winning performance when they said I was looking great. I certainly didn’t feel like it. But when someone asks how you are, you have to say “fine, thanks” don’t you?
Can you imagine if you were honest with everyone who asked? Crumbs, you would be too busy talking to get anything done.
Of course I’m going to tell you that I am doing great. Because we can’t be seen to be weak now, can we?
Isn’t it funny how pregnant ladies are treated like china plates in relation to work and such things; but admitting that things might be a bit trying is a different issue altogether.
And that goes far around and beyond pregnancy.
“Oh, look at the size of you!”
Is that supposed to be helpful?? Unless you find comfort in the assurance that you didn’t actually throw up your entire body weight that morning.
Morning sickness doesn’t necessary keep itself in the a.m.’s either.
Its all lies.
As pregnancy ticks on, things don’t seem to get more real. As the stomach grows and the skin stretches, I still found it hard to believe that there was a little life in there.
A deep maternal instinct told me to keep bump safe; to protect it from the struggles of this world. A feeling I am sure will remain far beyond pregnancy and childhood.
No matter how many books we read or how much we frequented the Pampers website telling us which stage our little one was at week on week, it still felt a little surreal. And it still feels surreal now to think about where our wee lad began his life.
Even when my husband takes him now, at a few months old, sits him on my stomach and says “can you imagine him in there?”
No, but I’m really glad he wasn’t that size when he was!
Apparently, you couldn’t tell that I was pregnant until I turned around. Result! Trust me, I know how lucky I was. Especially since my hands and feet stayed their original size too.
I have the feeling that other new mums will be swearing at me right now after that information.
It trucks on and the bump grows. Suddenly its huge and when people ask how you feel, you can confidently say:
“I feel the size of a barge.”
Telling family that there is a baby on the way is interesting. Especially if you come from a family such as mine where saying silly things at important times is an inbuilt tradition. At least it explains where I get it from.
When you tell your parents they are going to be gran and grandad and your mum turns round and says “you?” it’s not exactly a magical moment. I found it really nerve racking actually. No, I found it absolutely terrifying. Who knows why!
Our pregnancy had the added challenge of trying to find two friends we wanted to tell quickly and before the news got out. Two friends who happened to be in Australia and America. But we found them! One on a break from their work in a hospital and the other just after dropping off the kids she was looking after at school. Also a nerve racking experience but we were still desperate to tell them.
I wonder why it is so scary? Am I the only one who suffered from this ridiculous anxiety?
There was the other friend who we told just after taking the test and she arrived with a baby grow the very next day. Now THAT was scary! But I also think that was on purpose. And then there was the dancing that night (dizzy baby) and the theme park ride the week before with the confident “ah we won’t be pregnant this time, it’s fine.”
Whoops. Definitely not something I would recommend – certainly not in any later stage of pregnancy.
We live and learn, don’t we?
Its a strange feeling when you find out that you are pregnant. And I don’t mean whether the baby was planned or not; that is a very different issue that I am not going to tackle.
I mean when you do the test and the initial celebrations (in our case) are over. You maybe do another test a few days later; just to be sure. But, yep, you are pregnant.
Its odd- you know that your lives are going to change forever. You know that in less than a year, your world will be turned upside down. And possibly right way up again.
But you don’t feel any different.
I didn’t feel any different within myself. There was a baby in there? Really?
Its odd, eerie and altogether strange. And you know what? I don’t think there is anything wrong with that.
Maybe it is God’s way of letting you get used to things before it all goes a bit crazy.
I didn’t feel any different.
Then the morning sickness came. And the stomach. And the stretch marks. And the tiredness.
It is such a special time.
The world isn’t completely honest about being a parent. There is plenty that they miss; plenty that they over-simplify and some that they get spot on.
Its impossible to describe the reasons for wanting a baby. There’s plenty of statements you can utter and each will be different for each person.
Perhaps it is a primitive instinct that kicks in. The need to continue the species. Perhaps there is no hiding from the maternal, no matter how much of a tomboy you were (or are). Perhaps wanting a baby is a natural extension of showing the love you have for another; the father of that child.
Maybe its because you didn’t feel love any where else, but crave the love to be found in a babies eyes. Maybe it is the only way to stoke the fire of affection of the man that you love. Maybe he will only stay because of a baby and you can’t bear to do this life without him.
Either way, when you get right down to it, you want a baby because you just do.