Sunday, 27 March 2011

27th March 2011 - 13 weeks

So, what a long week! Scan day on Tuesday, which didn't exactly go to plan. I had been really anxious about having the scan, mostly for vanity reasons - my tummy is very flabby and covered in old stretch marks from puberty. Basically it's not a pretty sight and the idea of a stranger squishing it around filled me with dread.

On arrival at the clinic in my local hospital I found the whole system confusing - having to check in at on place, then another, and sitting in three different waiting areas. On top of that I had missed part of a form in my blue book which required my signature - the lady dealing with me was not impressed and made me feel like an idiot. So I was holding back the tears waiting outside the room. I was with the hubby who was a bit bemused by my reaction as he was just excited to see the baby of course. By the time it was my turn I was led into the room to be introduced to the back of the sonographer, who didn't even bother to turn around and say hello. It was a man, which added to my anxiety.

Once on the bed the angry lady (not sure if she was a nurse) told me off again for not pulling my leggings down far enough at the back - why did they need to be half way down my bottom?! More embarrassment. Then the sonographer walked around the curtain and began. It didn't take long, after a minute of very painful jabs with the scanner and alot of discomfort we had seen fleeting images of the baby - so much bigger than our earlier scan, much more babylike. He/she even did a little wriggle, but this magical moment was cut short when the sonographer decided the image wasn't clear enough, possibly because I hadn't drunk enough water and that I need to come back next week.

He also said that I may need a TV scan but he didn't have time to do one as other patients had arrived late. He did manage to date me - my due date has now moved to September 29th. I expected it to be tricky to see things so I wasn't overly surprised, but I did get the feeling that he didn't really try very hard and my weight was a good reason to cut the appointment short so he could get back on schedule. Might be wrong, but I generally left feeling quite traumatised by the whole experience, and a little emotional.

So now I have to go back next Wednesday as I have an appointment with a consultant so they have booked my scan for just before that. But since this all happened there have been further developments. I woke up early Friday morning, not really feeling any different than I usually do and of course needed to visit the loo, but I discovered that I was spotting. The first wipe was light pink, I called out to my husband who woke up with a jolt. It felt surreal. I had no pain, and the spotting was very light, but I checked out my books to see what to do. After getting washed and dressed I checked again and it was now a brown discharge, which reassured me - I don't know why, just seemed less scary than pink blood.

After an hour of trying I finally got through to the Midwives call centre and was told by the lady who answered the phone that my Midwife was on call and even so she wouldn't be able to help, so I needed to see my GP. Luckily I managed to get an appointment for that afternoon. I was feeling quite calm strangely enough, telling myself that this was very common, the bleeding had stopped and I had no pain, so there was nothing to panic about. I saw a junior doctor (I never seem to see the same doctor twice at my surgery!), but she was very lovely, read all of my notes thoroughly and really tried to allay my fears. After taking my pulse and blood pressure she then felt my tummy and told me that she wasn't worrying, so I needn't but to be on the safe side I should have a scan as soon as possible.

She arranged the scan for first thing Monday morning, so now I just have to wait. I've not had any bleeding since Friday and feel ok. I wonder whether if something was wrong would I be able to tell? Then I worry that I'm not worrying enough! I just need to see their heart beating, then I can relax. Fingers crossed.

Here are my measurements for this week -

Bust  - 51.5 inches (no change)
Waist - 49 inches (-.05)
Hips - 56.5 (+0.5)
Weight - -1.2kg

Surprised I have lost weight, as apart from being sick in the morning (when there's nothing to bring up) I've kept most things down. I've even had three cheese baguettes for lunch this week - which are more than I normally have.

  • Sickness - in the morning mostly
  • My boobs have felt bigger and more sensitive this week (so am surprised they haven't grown)
  • Waist is changing shape, and my top tyre feels bigger also.
And finally the weekly shots -

13 weeks plan view

13 weeks side view

Sunday, 20 March 2011

20th March 2011 - 12 weeks

This week I have started to feel uncomfortable. I've suffered in the past with hip pain, especially on my right hand side. And for the last few nights I guess as things have been shifting around in there, I have been in some discomfort and on occasion reasonable pain.

Friday night was the worst. I woke up in a panic as the whole right side from my back all the way through me was in some kind of spasm. I had been sleeping on my back for too long - which I know I shouldn't do, but when you are asleep there isn't much you can do! Luckily, naturally I sleep on my left, the best side, but I still need to flip around as everything aches if you stay still for too long. After getting up, going to the loo, having a drink and finally getting back into bed the strong pain subsided, but left me feeling a little battered and very apprehensive of what further pain is yet to come!

I've tried not to think too much about giving birth, but now I have that little niggle in the bak of my head, and although I'd like to think I have a reasonable pain threshold, in actuality I worry that I will be a big wuss! I also worry that I may neve get a good nights sleep again, as I'm only going to get bigger now and once the baby is here they'll be even more reasons not to sleep!

I've decided to buy a body support pillow as scrunched up duvet and an old pillow just aren't helping, will pick it up tomorrow night - so wish me luck that it helps!

My tummy has changed alot this week. From having a small hardness amongst the squidge I now have a small pooch which feels firm and round. Still can't really see anything with clothes on, but there is definite expansion! Just checked the measurements I took this morning and amazingly there's no real change - have put on a couple pounds, but my diet this week has been a bit rubbish and I haven't thrown up as much either.

Next week I'll be able to update you on the scan which is on Tuesday. We will also be telling some more friends on Saturday - not sure how they'll react - especially when one of them realises I am due near their wedding day!

Here are my measurements for this week -

Bust  - 51.5 inches (no change)
Waist - 49.5 inches (+.05)
Hips - 56 (no change)
Weight - +0.9kg

Surprised there isn't a greater change - really feel alot bigger and heavier this week.

  • Hip Pain
  • Backache
  • Mild Headaches - these seem to be getting better
  • Mild Queasiness
  • Rounder firmer tummy - just below belly button
And finally the weekly shots -

12 weeks side view

12 weeks plan view

Sunday, 13 March 2011

13th March 2011 - 11 weeks

Can't believe I'm in my Eleventh week already - it scares the life out of me when I think I'm now more than a quarter the way through. The main development this week is that I can now feel a proper bump. A lovely round ball below my belly button. Nothing to see yet though as it's nestled in with the flubber, but every morning now it seems to be just that little bit bigger.

The week didn't start off too well though as apart from dealing with jetlag I had a couple bad days of morning sickness, followed by extreme tiredness for the whole week. I've put this down to the growth spurt. My diet this week hasn't been great either, ate a whole packet of chocolate fingers on Sunday, then pizza and pancakes on Tuesday, and topped it all off with Fish n Chips Friday night. But still despite all of this I have lost a little weight.

Not sure if I've mentioned already but I have a date for my 12 week scan, it's on the 22nd March, followed a few days later by an appointment with a Consultant. Not quite sure what the Consultant appointment will be for - whether it will be about my weight or my blood clotting. But I'm more nervous about the scan. As much as I can't wait to see Bumpy on the screen I am dreading exposing my flubber and having it squished about and possibly commented upon. Worse still it will interfere with the scan and leave me feeling like some kind of freak rather than an expectant mum. I'm really trying not to worry too much about it, but it's something I'm finding hard to ignore and wish I could get over it and just think about the baby side of things.

Still yet to tell any more people. Hubby wants to wait as long as possible, I'm not sure. Although I have a feeling that I could probably hide it for longer than most women I still want to be open about it as I find it really hard to not spill the beans or make it obvious.

The whole feeling I have at the moment that the reality of having a baby is on hold, until we have the scan and everybody knows. I start to look at pushchairs and other things but it doesn't seem real. I guess it's quite normal to feel this way at this stage - before I know it I will be up to my eyes in nappies and poop!

Here are my measurements for this week -

Bust  - 51.5 inches (no change)
Waist - 49 inches (-.05)
Hips - 56 (no change)
Weight - -0.4kg

Not a great deal of change despite the bump appearing! Wonder if I have lost more weight as surely the baby and fluid weight must have increased this week? Hard to tell I guess.

  • queasiness - two bad days at the beginning of the week but felt much better second half
  • headaches - seem to have almost a constant underlying headache these days
  • emotional
  • tiredness - but waking up early
  • Solid bump appearing! Yay!
And finally the weekly shots -
11 weeks side view

11 weeks plan view

Sunday, 6 March 2011

6th March 2011 - 10 weeks

So my trip last week to Hong Kong, China and India was as you might imagine a tough one. The purpose of this trip was to visit the factories we use, to better understand their manufacturing capabilities. Work-wise it was very interesting and informative. Physically, it was draining.

The week didn't start well. The flight from the UK to Hong Kong takes 13 hours, a long time to be on a flight for anyone. But a nightmare if you aren't allowed to sleep, sit still for too long and must drink as much water as you can manage. It felt like I spent most of the flight in the loo. As mentioned before I insist now on going Business Class so I have enough leg room. This time we flew with BA so went Club World. It was my first time in this class on BA(we usually fly Virgin), but the seats weren't too bad - they lay flat and are approx 20 inches wide. Any larger lady reading this will know the terror of airline seats. In the past I have endure the embarrassment of the seatbelt not fitting and having to hide this from the attendants - no way am I going to ask for an extension!! Luckily in Business Class the belts are generous - why can't they do this across the board?! The seat was wide enough to not dig into my hips and the headphone socket was up high away from my thigh.

Not that relevant to the blog, but blimey the food on BA is awful!! So I arrived in HK the next day, my boss had had a lovely long sleep and felt fine, I did not - and hid away in my hotel room for the rest of the evening. On the Monday morning we fly out to Fuzhou in Eastern China. A short flight, but I felt so sick. We were right next to the Galley and the smell of the food being cooked was almost unbearable. I must mention again that my boss does not yet know about the baby, this will a complete shock to him as he doesn't really see me as a woman - just a fat design robot! Harsh I know, but after 10 years of working with him and being his support system for his roller-coaster emotions I know him too well.

Moving on - the day in Fuzhou was tough, the factory was (as most Chinese factories are) dirty, messy, smelly and depressing. The showroom part was full of wonderful product, but whilst my boss shut down, suffering from jet lag I was left to conduct the rest of the meeting, amending samples, photographing product, discussing QC issues. The whole time suffering from a bad headache, and feeling like the floor was moving up and down - even though I knew it wasn't. To top it all off it was bitterly cold, and when the visit was over the time spent in the airport was even colder and more depressing - with only a choice of three places to eat. I knew I needed to take something for the headache as I feared it would become a migraine, but stupidly I had left the paracetamol back in Hong Kong - all I had was a cooling gel patch for my forehead - not a great look - but I was desperate. I was dreading the flight with the dodgy food smells, I didn't know if I could keep my chinese lunch down!

After a very long and tiring day we made it back to Hong Kong and the familiarity of our usual Hotel. I felt like crap, just wanted to curl up in a ball and cry - which I did. Thank god for the rest of the trip I felt better, and made sure I was well prepared with water, snacks and paracetamol for any emergencies.

So on Wednesday night we fly into New Delhi. I had only been there once before last October - now we were visiting two of the factories we had placed orders with last year. My previous experience of India had been the chaotic but funny trip to and from the trade show - so not exactly a cultural overload. My boss decided that to be on the safe side we shouldn't eat the food - so I survived on mini cheddars and chocolate - but this time he was prepared to eat - which meant (as much as I love Indian food) I too had to eat and risk the infamous Delhi Belly!!

We stayed in a lovely hotel - The Imperial on Janpath. Very old school colonial! But the contrast between the 5 star luxury of our hotel and the squalor we experienced on the way to, and inside the factories can only be seen to be believed. India has a serious problem with poverty, hygiene, organisation, corruption, infrastructure and safety - but the worst problem of all is that no-one seems to care and everyone just accepts it!! Truly shocking and exhausting.

My worst experience was on the last day. The traffic was bad (as usual) and we were stuck at some lights for ages. Anyone who has visited India will be aware of the many people begging at traffic lights. A shocking sight no matter how many times you have seen it (as a Westerner). I was used to people tapping on the window for money. The only option, as hard as it seems is to ignore them. Many of them either choose begging as their career, or are under the control of the mafia who provide shelter, food and protection in exchange for all of their earnings. But on this occasion a woman in her twenties, painfully thin pressed herself and her malnourished baby up against my window. She gestured as to feeding the baby - I looked at the baby's face, it had large oversized eyes which stared right at me. I felt angry that someone could use their chid as a begging tool - I personally think there are always ways of making a living without resorting to begging, but I also felt so sad and wondered what life lay in store for this child. I had often seen older children - 3 or 4 years old who were already experts in begging unaided by their parents. We had no where to go so had to sit whilst this woman pressed herself up against the car, tapping my window. The India factory owner and his father sat in the front unaware of my distress - my boss sat on my left drifting in and out of sleep. That was until I began to cry, and much to my efforts I couldn't contain my sobs. It was embarassing as this was a business meeting, but my so called stiff upper lip disappeared entirely. My boss was unsupportive as usual, and chose not to comment - so my reaction was left undiscussed. Even now I am crying typing this, I cannot get rid of the image of that baby's face. Horrific - just horrific.

Gladly I am home now, back with the hubby and my two cats. Feeling queasy, with a banging headache. But so grateful that I was born in the country and nowhere else - something I don't really appreciate. And knowing that my baby will be born here also - with a chance in life, and not as a money-making tool. Although even here that happens too - but in a much less extreme way.

Sorry if I've depressed anyone reading this - it was a long tough week, and my last trip abroad for quite some time.

Here are my measurements for this week -

Bust  - 51.5 inches (+0.5)
Waist - 49.5 inches (+1.5)
Hips - 56 (+0.5))
Weight - -1kg

I kind of thought I had begun expanding - but now the measurements prove this! I don't know whether to be happy with the weight loss, but I guess at this stage I really shouldn't be gaining anyway - I'm sure I will put it all back on again next week knowing me!

  • queasiness - threw up several times
  • headaches - getting more extreme
  • emotional
  • dizziness
  • Expanding waistline!
And finally the weekly shots - 

10 weeks plan view

10 weeks side view

27th February 2011 - 9 weeks

Apologies for the lateness of this post - I had hoped to update my blog before my flight - but just ran out of time. I did manage to take photos and measurements that morning - really want to keep a good record of this pregnancy, I do love a good stat and comparison photo - even if it is of my expanding waistline!

So after a little hassle and NHS inefficiency I eventually picked up my blood thinning injections the day before my flight. I had been given 6 x 60ml of Clexane in prefilled syringes. Clexane is deemed safer than Warfarin as it doesn't stay in your system that long. Hence taking 4 hours before and then 24 hours after each long haul flight.

Luckily I'm not too squeamish with needles, but still the act of injecting yourself is very alien and not something I could ever get used to. Before the flight I had to do my first injection. Into my tummy. It stung like mad, and left a wonderf bruise the next day!

I still felt like an idiot going on this trip and risking my health and the baby's health. Friends and family mostly thought I shouldn't go either, which made me feel worse. I kept trying to keep things in perspective and fight against my natural instinct to dramatise things, but sometime you just can't help the way you feel. I did though try to adopt the bury your head in the sand approach, which helped somewhat.

I packed lots of nibbles and drinks to my already heavy suitcase - it ended up weighing 26kg! For one week! Food and drink can sometimes be a luxury on these trips, especially when my boss doesn't ever seem bothered about mealtimes! So I knew a well stocked supply of oat bars, biscuits and mini cheddars were essential!

The week before had been tough. Making excuses to be off for my booking appointment, trying to tie up loose ends at work, fulfilling orders for my craft business and of the worst part - attending my husbands Nans Interment. Interring someones ashes turns out to be a distastefully short but nonetheless traumatic event. Helped none by a cold, wet and grey afternoon. We were all worn out by the grief and tragedy of losing Nan, and it wasn't just my husband and I who couldn't help thinking how happy she would have been to hear about the baby. In fact she would have been the happiest of everyone as she had longed for this moment. Not that I'm religious, but I'd like to think she knows somehow, and is still happy.

On that note I guess I'd better tie things up and add my info -

Here are my measurements for this week -

Bust  - 51 inches - no change
Waist - 48 inches - no change
Hips - 55.5 (-0.5)
Weight - +0.1kg

  • queasiness - still, did throw up a couple of times
  • headaches
  • tiredness
  • emotional
And finally the weekly shots - 

9 weeks side view

9 weeks plan view