Wednesday, 3 January 2018

My Pregnancy with Baby Number 2 - Looking Back.

Looking down at my precious bundle of joy, it's hard to believe he was ever actually inside me. The pregnancy flew by and looking back, those overwhelming 9 months seem like they lasted less than half that. As Flynn sleeps soundly on my chest, I thought I'd reflect on what was the roughest pregnancy I've ever had.

First Trimester.

It didn't take Jordan and I long to conceive at all. In fact, we accomplished it first attempt. A fact that
caused me to struggle emotionally throughout the first trimester. Like with Vala, I expected months of trying before eventual conception and I couldn't believe we'd been so lucky as to conceive instantly. I was in denial about the pregnancy for weeks and took a total of 8 pregnancy tests over 3 weeks to convince myself it was real. By the time I started to accept the pregnancy was real, I began telling myself it wouldn't last. I barely had any morning sickness, or negative symptoms at all and we'd conceived so quickly that I told myself the pregnancy wouldn't last. I convinced myself that at the 12 week scan, we'd discover I'd had a missed miscarriage. I couldn't get excited about the pregnancy because I was so convinced I'd already lost the baby. Thankfully, as we now know, this was not the case. At the 12 week scan we saw a perfectly healthy baby on the monitor with it's heart beating away. I spent the entire first trimester upset about something that wasn't true. I thought after seeing my baby alive and well on the scan, I'd be able to start getting excited about the pregnancy and enjoying it. I was wrong.

Second Trimester.

I progressed into the second trimester still feeling very apprehensive about the pregnancy. I'd seen my baby but still there was a voice of doubt in the back of my head. I wasn't excited at all. Jordan's mother had already gone out and started buying everything baby related under the sun and was harassing me to tell her what I wanted for baby. But I couldn't. It all seemed too premature for my comfort. I was still convinced the pregnancy would end and there wouldn't be a baby at the end of it. As a result, I failed to connect with the pregnancy or my unborn baby. I mentioned it to my midwife but did nothing more to fix the problem. I just went through the motions hoping to get through each day without finding blood in my underwear. At 17 weeks we went and had a private gender scan done. We both believed we were having a boy and Vala even told us she wanted a brother. I was so anxious before the scan because I thought we'd find something wrong with the baby. But to our delight, the baby was perfectly healthy still and a boy! We were elated. It was the first time since getting my positive pregnancy test that I was excited about having a baby. The happiness didn't last though.

As it turned out, Flynn was a pretty lazy baby and I didn't feel his first movements for quite a while.
A lot later than I'd felt with Vala. I again began thinking something was wrong and fearing the worst. At 18 weeks the tachycardia I experienced with Vala started to return and I feared it was only a matter of time before I forced back onto bed rest or worst, admitted into hospital for endless tests. Thankfully though, the tachycardia was much tamer than my first pregnancy and I was able to avoid bed rest and hospital for the entire second trimester. Our 20 week scan confirmed we were indeed having a son and that he was absolutely perfect. No anomalies were detected at all. I was getting more and more accepting of the pregnancy towards the end of the second trimester but still struggled to connect with my baby and I still had negative thoughts plaguing the back of my mind.

Third Trimester.

Without a doubt, the hardest trimester of any pregnancy but for me, third trimester was a nightmare! I was already dealing with the tachycardia but come 28 weeks, a second glucose tolerance test revealed I had gestational diabetes. I was so angry. I felt like I'd suffered enough in the pregnancy already and now the GD was salt on the wound. I'd given up alcohol obviously. Mostly cut out caffeine to help ease the tachycardia and now I had to cut sugar out my diet too. Ok, it's not the worst thing to happen, I consume too much sugar anyway but chocolate became my main vice for dealing with the ante-natal depression and now I was being told I couldn't have it. I honestly didn't think I'd make it another 12 weeks on the diet they were recommending. I thought I'd struggle, my blood sugar levels would continue to rise and that I'd end up having to have insulin injections. My depression worsened in those first couple of weeks after my diagnosis.

I adapted though and each week got easier. I grew accustomed to my new diet and began to have a more positive outlook on maintaining the diet after Flynn was born to help me lose weight. The gestational diabetes also meant I had regular scans to check Flynn's growth and each scan connected me more and more with him. Even though they were brief, seeing that he was still ok, really helped ease my depression and helped me look more positively towards his birth. But like with the rest of the pregnancy, the positivity didn't last long. In the final few weeks of the pregnancy, Flynn dropped lower into my pelvis and suddenly I was in incredible pain. I would scream out when getting into bed and rolling over and some days walking seemed impossible. Turned out I was suffering from Pelvic Girdle Pain aka SPD and it would only get worse as Flynn got bigger. Which it did. In my last two weeks, I had to stop taking Vala to school. I was in too much pain walking that I couldn't even get myself up and down the stairs. The pain made my tachycardia worse as well. Some days I was in so much pain, I couldn't even get out of bed without strong painkillers. It was a nightmare. I thought my section date would never come.

The Birth.

Thankfully, my section date did arrive. A day early even. And Flynn was born into the world in such
a calm and relaxed manner. But most importantly, he was born alive! Something that 9 months previously, I doubted would ever happen. My son was screaming his lungs out, letting me know he was here and he was ok. Then before I knew it, he was in my arms and everything I'd been through and suffered with, seemed like a distant, unimportant memory. I knew the moment I felt him trying to suckle on my cheek that everything I'd gone through was completely worth it. I knew that I'd go through it all over again as well. Now here we are nearly 2 weeks later and I couldn't be happier. I love my son unconditionally and feel so silly for ever thinking I'd never get to hold him in my arms. This little man was meant to be here and despite all my doubts and fears, he stuck around and proved me wrong.

I'm still adjusting to a life with 2 children but honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way. My heart and life is so full right now and I'm thankful every single day that my little man stuck around and is with us now. I'm glad I got this opportunity to look back over the pregnancy and get everything written out because hopefully if we have another child in the future, it'll help me to worry less and enjoy it more.

Thank you all for taking the time to read my pregnancy recap. It was a roller-coaster ride for me and I feel honoured to be able to share it with all of you.

Until next time,
Alli xo


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