I bought some pregnancy tests from Superdrug during the day on May 16th. I’m usually as regular as clockwork, but I was now definitely 3 days late. I thought I was “out” that month as a few days before I’d had a bit of spotting, which I usually get a couple of days before my period anyway and that’s how I know my period is about to start. But two days after the spotting nothing had happened, then another couple of days passed, and that was when I realised I was late.
May 16th was a Thursday, and I promised myself hand on heart that I wouldn’t do a test until the weekend because I’d had the spotting (I’ve since realised that this was probably implantation bleeding). But on that night my husband was in bed ill with a flu virus and throat infection, and on antibiotics. He was fast asleep and I was a bit lost as to what to do, I didn’t want to put the TV on in case I woke him and I couldn’t focus on anything I can usually concentrate on as I was worried about him.
At 8pm that night, I gave in to temptation and did a test. It was one of those Clearblue digital ones.
Within seconds the word “pregnant” flashed up on the display. I stared at it dumbstruck. The hourglass continued to flash for another couple of minutes and then displayed “2-3 weeks” – I was expecting it to display “1-2” but I’ve since learnt that it depends on the hormone levels in your body at the time, and mine must have already been quite high.
Even though my husband was poorly I just had to tell him, so I woke him up and said, “You’re going to be a Dad” and showed him the test. He gave me a huge hug and then went back to sleep – bless him he really wasn’t very well at all that day! I remember ringing my parents to tell them, and they were over the moon. My Dad couldn’t contain himself! I ended up doing all the tests that I’d bought over the next couple of days, because I just couldn’t believe that I was actually pregnant.
The next few weeks were a bit of a blur as I tried to carry on as best I could and not get my hopes up too much. I went to the GP the day after I had my positive result and they referred me straight to the early pregnancy unit for an early scan at 6 weeks. I went with my Dad to this and they confirmed that there was a viable pregnancy, and they even picked up a flutter that they thought was an early heartbeat! My husband and I were on cloud nine, but I still couldn’t let myself get too excited.
In terms of how I felt in myself being pregnant, I was definitely one of the lucky ones. I had no morning sickness whatsoever and I wasn’t sick once (which is good news for someone who suffers from emetophobia, which is a fear of being sick). I had odd waves of nausea, but these were usually linked to strong smells of some description. I remember once my husband bought me a beautiful bunch of flowers which contained lilies, and the smell of these literally made me gag but I still wasn’t sick. He had to get rid of them which was a huge shame as they were beautiful.
The only other two things I can remember is that my boobs felt like they were on fire ALL the time, they were so sore and painful, and at about 8 weeks exhaustion kicked in of a kind I’d never known. Having never got this far in the past being pregnant I felt I was a bit in no man’s land, and I was literally in bed most nights by 6.30-7pm and asleep which I wasn’t used to at all.
I had a scan and check-ups at the early pregnancy unit at 6 weeks, 8 weeks and 10 weeks, and each scan confirmed that my baby was developing well. Then on July 15th I got to the magic 12 weeks and had my 12 week scan. It was the first time that we could see our baby properly formed, and the feelings were beyond anything I can describe to see that little face and body on the screen. It even looked like the baby was sucking its thumb!
After that the exhaustion lifted and I felt amazing. The only things I had was a bit of heartburn every now and then, a horrid metallic taste in my mouth (nothing I tried got rid of it) and the occasional leg cramp, usually as I was going to sleep or in the night. This frightened my husband to death whenever it happened as the pain would be such that I’d just suddenly cry out, totally out of the blue, but he always sprang into action immediately with helping me stretch my legs and massaging them to relieve the pain!
I had my 16 week midwife check and she said I was having a “textbook pregnancy” as my blood test results, urine results and blood pressure were perfect and everything was developing exactly as it should be. My husband and I were on cloud nine.
I carried on as normally as possible but I also knew my limits, and I combined work with resting and also going out to a few festivals over the summer. My husband took up photography and we went to quite a few events to help him hone his photography skills. Then during a rather stressful time at the beginning of September with a festival I set up a few years ago that I was involved in (one that I’m no longer involved in now thank god…and good riddance) I woke up during the middle of the night with some pains in my stomach that were coming and going. I was a bit worried, so at 2am on September 3rd my husband and I headed up to the hospital.
I couldn’t find in my notes anything about what to do, but I did spot in them that if you have abdominal pain to go straight to A&E, so that’s what we did. What I didn’t realise was because I’d just hit the 20 week mark that week, and was due to have my 20 week scan on September 5th, that I was meant to go to delivery suite triage. I was wheeled round to it from A&E feeling a right numpty!
I was checked out and again everything was fine with both me and the baby. We had to wait to see a doctor and when we did her opinion was that the pain was just because of the stretching that was occurring as the baby got bigger. I felt really stupid for not realising this, but as she said, she would rather see someone 100 times and it be nothing than miss a problem.
Then two days later I was back at the hospital for my 5 month scan.