A Little Bit of History

Oh my god… surely not? I checked the test, rechecked it, and did the second one just to be sure, yep that blue line was most probably there…

I was pregnant, and that was that.

Should I be excited right? We’d been trying for about three months by this point. I should be happy and ecstatic and so looking forward to being a mummy like we’d planned. So why was my first feeling of this fear? I was scared out of my wits and had so many questions zooming around my head I felt suffocated.

It didn’t help that J had such a happy look on his face. I mean, I’m glad he did because I knew it said he was pleased about it too, but at that moment I felt my life change forever, and I didn’t know how to take it.

What if it was too soon? I was only 19 after all; I’d be 20 when I had this baby. What would our family and friends think? We’d just been engaged for a few months, not even together for a full year and I was already pregnant…

I knew we’d get it in the neck from both sets of parents. What if I couldn’t cope? What about those drinks I’d had the weekend before – could they have harmed my baby?

The questions buzzing around my head were never-ending, and I couldn’t think properly… I needed a stiff drink, but I couldn’t have one now, I wanted a cigarette to calm my nerves, but there was no way I could justify that either.

So the cigarettes went in the bin, J had the drink, and I sat there in a stupor trying to let this life-changing news sink in… I was going to be a Mummy.

It probably wasn’t the best of times to decide to try for a baby. Ok, it wasn’t the best of times to work for a baby. We were both at university and in the middle of our degrees, mine in Pharmacology and his in Computing. How on earth would we manage this? J had been thinking of chucking it in for a while and had started a full-time job at this point. I, on the other hand, didn’t have a clue what I’d do with my life different than what I’d always planned – I’d get my degree, then a PhD, then go into research. How could I possibly do that now? I’d have to take a break from uni and then decide whether I could go back or not.

The pregnancy had its ups and downs.
I ended up hospitalised on Christmas Eve due to Hyperemesis Gravadarum (severe morning sickness that just goes on and on and on). That didn’t go away till over halfway through it.

I managed to get symphysis pubis dysfunction, where the ligaments and tendons between the joints become too loose in the pelvis and cause immense pain. The SPD was worse because I’m hyper-mobile as it is.

As my doctor put it, I’m as flexible generally as your average pregnant woman is, so when I am pregnant and have the hormone relaxin released in me to ‘open up’ the pelvis for a baby to fit through…

well, you get the drift, and it’s not fun.

I also just happened to be heavily pregnant in what was the hottest summer in Dundee to date, and to top it off there was a heatwave when I went into labour.

Ah, labour… that was fun – not. It was by far the most painful experience I’ve ever been through. I’ll spare the details. On second thought, no I won’t!

I was five days overdue when I woke up to go for my usual 5 am loo trip when I had a show (snot-looking blob of jelly… glamorous business this pregnancy and birth stuff). I thought finally something might be happening but didn’t want to get too excited, so off I waddled back to bed. By 6 am I was having painful and regular contractions.

By 9 am I was in the hospital being told there weren’t enough beds in the labour suite but that I could stay up in the wards if I wanted. Go home and deal with pain on my own or stay in the hospital and have Entonox (gas & air) on tap… difficult decision eh?

By about 3 pm I was in a LOT of pain and wanted more pain relief which I got in the form or diamorphine. I’d also been told to be quiet by one of the midwives as I was disturbing the other women… now I look back on it I think I would have been a lot ruder if it hadn’t been my first labour!

Finally got down to the labour ward at around 4 pm, waters went around 5 pm, I started pushing at about 5.10pm, and Zack was born at 5.18pm.

As soon as he was out the pain stopped. He’d pooped himself while he was still inside and had to be taken to the resuscitation unit just outside to give him a little oxygen and luckily he was back in the room only a couple of minutes later.

I looked down at my beautiful little boy and fell so deeply in love with him it felt unreal. His big blue eyes opened, and he looked right in my eyes, and I knew I’d never want to be parted from this beautiful little being that I’d grown inside me.

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