The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week Thirty (finding a home)

the baby diaries, mummy blog, pregnancy blogger, blended family, dontcallmestepmummy, hypermobility, moving house and pregnant

The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week Thirty (finding a home)

This week has been so much better because we found a home.  Somewhere we can live as a family.  The girls will have a gorgeous HUGE room and we will have a room for baby boy once he’s old enough to go into his own room.  There is so much packing to do, and moving is so stressful but I’m so glad that we at least know where we are going at the end of next week.

It’s been interesting because James’ parents have come up North (they live on the South Coast) so that they can help us pack.  James is unwell, so I went with my new in-laws to the old house to start packing up.  Also, Alan (James’ Dad) ran me to the hospital for my physio appointment.  Little did I know I would be coming out on crutches.  Not a happy bunny.

I’m not as sick this week, it’s calming down.  Only a handful of times a days instead of constant.  I really hoped it would have passed by now.

My sister is due back from Mallorca at the weekend so I’m looking forward to seeing her, but it’s good timing that we’ll have a home to move into next week as it would be very crowded at my Mum’s.  We’re able to move into the church refuge for our last week next week.  I lived there after my ex left me, will be strange in my old room with a whole family, and pregnant instead of on my own.  I was always so sad there.

In my journal this week –

‘By this stage you probably have the impression you’ve been pregnant forever and may be feeling a bit fed up.  Make sure you talk to your partner about how you’re feeling so you don’t end up arguing over petty things.

THINGS TO DO Start thinking about what you want to include in your birth plan.  Discuss your options with your friends from birthing classes and people you know who have already had children.  Fill in your preferences on page….

How am I feeling this week? 

Energy : great, been packing up our home.  Comes in bursts though and then I’m wiped.

Mood : good, stressed about house and things.  Down about being put on crutches.

Appetite : want food little and often or I’m famished

Cravings : KFC lol, really wanted one for weeks, finally got one this week.

Sickness : Not too bad, occasional

Notes : staying at the ‘rents and Lydia House is stressful.  Not having a home ready for baby.  Put on crutches as my hips keep dislocating and stomach muscles are tearing.

I’m so pleased we’ve found somewhere to live, as exciting and eventful as it has been feeling like refugees at this time.  It really isn’t the best season for it.  I’m just longing to nest but unable to do so… yet.  Very excited for our new home.
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Baby Diaries

The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week Twenty-Nine (have you started maternity yet?)

The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week Twenty-Nine (have you started maternity yet?)

the baby diaries, mummy blog, pregnancy blogger, blended family, dontcallmestepmummy, hypermobility, homeless and pregnant

My journal this week stated :

‘As you start winding down at work, make sure you have your maternity benefits sorted out.  Even if you are working until close to your due date, it’s important to have it all in place as early as possible as it’s the last thing you need to worry about once you go on maternity leave.’

Ha, this is so funny.  At this point we don’t even know where we are going to be living.  My hypermobility is presenting a real problem and everyone keeps joking that I’ll need a zimmer frame.  It was Easter this weekend so we had the girls with us at my parents still.  Shayla was hilarious Easter morning, the preacher told us to talk to God in our own words at one point in the service, at this time 2 year old Shayla chirps up and started repeating ‘the end is coming, the end is coming.’  Very Grandpa Simpson esque.  James and I were in stitches laughing, but it was also quite eery.  Haha, funny toddlers.

Had an absolute melt down at my poor new husband, as we have no security and a baby coming really soon.  We’re going to have to start looking for a new home, and it’s just all a bit overwhelming at this time.  Panic and hormones are certainly playing a part.

My journal asked me :

‘How am I feeling this week?

Energy : pretty useless but got to stay with my Mum, so that was helpful

Mood : really down, about not having a home.  I upset my lovely huband as I was stressed.

Appetite : average, eating toast in the middle of the night as I can’t go long without

Cravings : chinese, but eating what we’ve bought in

Sickness : quite bad but mainly due to stress’

I was sad when the girls had to go home but it was also nice to have a bit of peace, I am preparing myself for the fact that once little man comes, there will always be a child with us.  They won’t have another home they need to go to.  I will be a parent full-time, no days off.

I have a physio appointment finally coming up next week and I cannot wait.  Tried the support bands and aquanatal etc. just not working for me.  Hopefully they can shed some light on this hypermobility and how I can get through the rest of my pregnancy without being completely useless.

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Baby Diaries

The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week Twenty-Seven (our wedding)

Baby Diaries

The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week Twenty-Seven (our wedding)

pregnant brides, dontcallmestepmummy, 6 months pregnant
6 months pregnant

Being pregnant the day of our wedding was actually nice in some ways.  I love knowing that my little man is in our wedding photographs.  In others it was difficult.  I had the girls with me the eve of the wedding so that they could get ready with all the other bridesmaids and feel part of the beautifying experience.  They loved having their hair done by the hairdresser, and I loved having them with me.  This was the first time I had them on my own overnight without James as their new stepmum to be.

I was still being sick the week of the wedding, hyperemesis is a pain.  My hen night was a quiet evening at my friends home organised by my maid of honour, it had a 50’s theme and obviously as I was pregnant there wasn’t any drinking.  Not that I’m a big drinker but that tradition was somewhat lost on me.  I did really enjoy the wedding shower though which involved a treasure hunt around the house and a risque quiz with some answers given by my husband that people had to guess… he can be a bit cheeky.

dontcallmestepmummy, bridal shower, pregnant brides
we all wore aprons – 50’s theme (although I was surprised hence no updo)

On the Monday, (we were married on the Wednesday) I went for a spa break with my sister, my Mum, and Mum in law to be.  It was lovely, so relaxing, we had facials, massages, I had a spray tan ready for the wedding, we did aqua aerobics, enjoyed a lovely meal.  The only problem was this was the first time I discovered that I had hip problems during pregnancy.  I have hypermobility and this had never been an issue before, in fact as a dancer (in my past) it was always a bonus to be so flexible.  However, whilst we were taking an aqua-aerobics class and I was extending my legs out in the water my hip came out of socket.  It was quite painful but I was able to rectify it relatively quickly and didn’t think much else of it.  It became painful to walk though afterwards and I thought I was going to be in a place where I couldn’t walk down the aisle without crutches *sobs*.  We did have a lovely time away though, and as I now know that it was only a matter of time for this to occur (so much worse in my subsequent pregnancy) I wouldn’t have changed any of it for the world.  I shared a room with my Mother-in-law to be and I felt it gave us a great chance to bond better before the wedding.  I am blessed with an amazing Mother-in-law.

spa break, hen night, pregnant brides, dontcallmestepmummy
my Mum and I about to go out for our evening meal. I had a treatment in my hair.
spa break, hen night, pregnant brides, dontcallmestepmummy
from left to right – myself, the Mother-in-law and my Mum
pregnant thick hair, spa break, dontcallmestepmummy, pregnant brides
my pregnant hair post the treatment in the Spa – wild

So, on Wednesday of this week, we were married.  Exactly one year to the day of when we met…. our little sentimental touch.  It was a lovely day, but again, due to being pregnant, we skipped our own evening do and went straight to the lodge we had booked for our ‘minimoon’  as we had already been to Paphos the month before (when it was safe for me to fly).

first kiss
our first kiss as man and wife

I only captured one picture on our ‘minimoon’ this is unlike me.  It’s James enjoying his first breakfast as a married man.

the morning after, pregnant brides, minimoon, dontcallmestepmummy
the morning after

At the end of the week we had Isis’ 6th birthday party – yes you read that right, 3 days after the wedding…. when we had no home to host it in (read my last post here).  My Mum offered us her place for the party and Isis had a great time.

sixth birthday, dontcallmestepmummy, the eldest
yep, it was a store bought cake, there was enough going on that week *winks*
isis turns 6
the birthday girl – 6

It was certainly a busy pregnant week, you can see why in my pregnancy journal I posted how I had a lot less stress once it was out of the way.
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the baby diaries, week 27, pregnant brides, dontcallmestepmummy
week 27

The Baby Diaries – Judah – week twenty-one (our holiday in Paphos)

Baby Diaries

The Baby Diaries – Judah – week twenty-one (our holiday in Paphos)

week 21

Most people like to use the excuse of ‘eating for two’ when they’re pregnant, although scientifically this is inaccurate.  Your body is actually more efficient when you’re pregnant, your metabolism increases causing you to need about an extra 500 calories a day.  Sorry.

My pregnancy journal as seen notes that your appetite will increase at around this stage.  For me this wan’t the case, Due to my hypermesis gravidarum I could barely keep anything down and as a result had become very fussy, just wanting bland stodgy food like toast, potatoes etc.  I pretty much took my only bump photo on this holiday, I stuck my tummy out as I liked looking pregnant (especially as I’m overweight to begin with, it was nice for a season to look like I had a genuine reason to be fat haha).

Bump_1.JPG

How beautiful is Paphos? and to think this was early February, being in the warm was definitely a welcome break.  I enjoyed being on holiday a lot, we seemed to go at a season and to a resort were most of the people were aged 50+.  Obviously we weren’t going to be out drinking and partying, we had gone all inclusive so that we didn’t need to worry about cost, so I had a lot of virgin cocktails whilst James enjoyed the watered down limitless spirits and cocktails.  James and I decided to embrace the fun and join in most of the activities, I won the darts championship one day, shuffleboard (haha, now I sound old), sucked at the archery and rifle shooting, but obviously as an ex entertainer won their version of X factor singing Leona Lewis’ version of ‘Run’ in the talent show.  We thought it was funny collecting the certificates and there wasn’t much else I could do as on the odd days we did do trips round the ‘Tombs of the Kings’ and to some beaches, and shopping, I was just too exhausted as it was hot and I hadn’t been able to keep down much food.

I have to say the only thing that upset me on this holiday was not having the girls with us.  We kept seeing things that they would enjoy, activities they would be good at, sights we wished we could share.  We vowed not to go away without children again apart from overnight or long weekends at a push.  It was important for us to have that couple time before the babies came along and it continues to be important for us to have dates.  Something we struggle to schedule in but are trying to get better at.

holiday selfie
holiday selfie

We would go swimming every day in the afternoon, so my hair spent most of it’s time plaited to not become a hassle.  I hated dealing with my hair when I was pregnant.  It just irritated me, funny what hormones do to you, I think if I could carry it off a pixie cut would have been adopted quick smart.

Here are the notes I made in my pregnancy journal this week :

How am I feeling this week?

Energy : Good, joined in most of the games, went swimming every day, early nights were still needed though.

Mood : great, had a fantastic holiday in the sun with my hubby to be.  Took lots of photos in and around cyprus with bump.

tomb of the kings
a much needed sit down in one of the tombs

Appetite : very little I can eat on this all inclusive, and I have a very little appetite.

Cravings : mainly salted potatoes ie. chips, hash browns etc. and ice-cream as it’s been hot but my body doesn’t want dairy.

Sickness : not really subsided but travel and heat won’t have helped.

The best thing was I got to spend Valentines Day with my amazing fiance, who was crazy enough to go into the freezing swimming pool, that NO other guests were using.  Daniel Craig eat your heart out lol.
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Daniel Craig eat your heart out
Daniel Craig eat your heart out

The Baby Diaries – Judah – week twenty (the anomaly scan)

Baby Diaries

The Baby Diaries – Judah – week twenty (the anomaly scan)

week 20

There are a lot of questions you may forget to ask when you attend your anomaly scan, it is so easily done.  There you are seeing your baby looking more like a real human as opposed to the more skeletal version you would’ve seen at the dating scan.  This is when if the scan is clear you can make out whose nose baby has, or even if they have big feet.  It is so mesmerising seeing your child there wriggling around and just that awareness that ‘hey, there’s a little person alive inside of me.’

Again, I was quite numb and unexpectant when I made my list as you can probably tell from above.  I had the ‘Your Pregnancy Bible‘ book and had read it a lot.  So, the questions I had written down where the ones I deemed important to me to check.

I found everything about going for the anomaly scan both exciting and nerve wracking.  I was so nervous that there may be something up with our ‘rainbow baby’ but also was excited by the little tasks such as drinking the correct amount of water (approximately half a litre) to make sure that the sonographer could get the best picture that was possible.

This scan takes a lot longer than the dating scan as they have lots to check, that all the internal organs are growing and at the right size,  Here is a list from babycentre

What will the sonographer look at on my scan?

The sonographer will examine all your baby’s organs and take measurements. She will look at:

  • The shape and structure of your baby’s head. At this stage severe brain problems, which happen very rarely, are visible.
  • Your baby’s face, to check for a cleft lip. Cleft palates inside a baby’s mouth are hard to see and are not often picked up.
  • Your baby’s spine, both along its length, and in cross section, to make sure that all the bones align, and that the skin covers the spine at the back.
  • Your baby’s abdominal wall, to make sure it covers all the internal organs at the front, as well as check the placenta, umbilical cord and the amniotic fluid
  • Your baby’s heart. The top two chambers (atria) and the bottom two chambers (ventricles) should be equal in size. The valves should open and close with each heartbeat. Your sonographer will also examine the major veins and arteries which carry blood to and from your baby’s heart
  • Your baby’s stomach. Your baby swallows some of the amniotic fluid that he lies in, which is seen in his stomach as a black bubble.
  • Your baby’s kidneys. The sonographer will check that your baby has two kidneys, and that urine flows freely into his bladder. If your baby’s bladder is empty, it should fill up during the scan and be easy to see. Your baby has been doing a wee every half an hour or so for some months now!
  • Your baby’s arms, legs, hands and feet. The sonographer will look at your baby’s fingers and toes, but not count them.

The other main thing they will check is where your placenta is lying.  I had placenta praevia which meant that my placenta was lying low under the baby.  They arrange for another scan in your third trimester if this is the case (usually at around 36 weeks) just to make sure that it has moved out of the way of the birth canal.  If this isn’t the case they will usually recommend a caesarean section.

20 week scan
20 week scan

Don’t forget that it’s at this stage that you can find out if it’s a boy or a girl if you want to.  My friends had a student sonographer who took a lot longer and then they forgot to ask even though they had previously intended to. They went the rest of the pregnancy expectant for the surprise and made the most out of it, don’t think they were disappointed with not knowing for long.  I on the other hand would not have been able to cope with that.  I’d have been paying for an extra scan.

You can arrange an earlier sex determining scan from as early as 17 weeks if you wanted to book one privately if you just can’t wait to find out.  I debated this *coughs* control freak.  I looked into the 4d scans, baby scan have places all over the country.  I decided that I would still have to wait for the baby to arrive and it would be good practice for me to get used to waiting.  Pregnancy definitely makes you patient, or teaches you patience in preparation for the baby that will require a lot.

We of course found out we were having a little boy and James was beside himself.  He had decided in his head that he could only produce girls and was very pleasantly surprised.  It was a special thing for me to able to provide him with his first son.  It is hard being an expectant mum in a blended family and this was a special first for us as a couple.
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The Baby Diaries – Judah – week five to twenty (am I really pregnant?)

Baby Diaries

The Baby Diaries – Judah – week five to twenty (am I really pregnant?)

After you’ve had a miscarriage it’s really difficult to accept that you are pregnant. They call a pregnancy after a miscarriage a ‘rainbow baby.’

The urban dictionary defines this as :

A “rainbow baby” is a baby that is born following a miscarriage or still birth.

In the real world, a beautiful and bright rainbow follows a storm and gives hope of things getting better. The rainbow is more appreciated having just experienced the storm in comparison.

The storm (pregnancy loss) has already happened and nothing can change that experience. Storm-clouds might still be overhead as the family continue to cope with the loss, but something colourful and bright has emerged from the darkness and misery.

“We lost our last pregnancy, but now we have a rainbow baby.”

Judah's 1st scan
Judah’s 1st scan

Even though we had a successful 1st scan which showed that I had conceived only 10 days after I had miscarried I couldn’t accept that I was pregnant with Judah until we got to 20 weeks.  This was so bizarre as I had horrendous hyperemis  gravidarum all throughout this stage.  I would say that baby was reminding me by my extreme morning sickness that they were in there, but a part of me still couldn’t believe they would make it to the outside world.  I didn’t buy him anything, I stopped writing in the pregnancy journal. I was so fearful of losing him. My husband (then fiancé) and I attended a church in London (Hillsong) whilst we were down visiting family (we’d been to see ‘Les Miserables’ the night before). As we were singing along with one of the songs in the worship time the lyrics were ‘death has been defeated by love, You overcome’ I felt God speak to my heart. This baby would stick, this baby was not going to be allowed to die. This baby’s life was mapped out before them ready for them to step into. I began to have hope again for this child.

We got engaged in this season, this was pre-planned as we were waiting for James’ divorce papers (read my post on Our Complicated History to better understand), James was designing and having my engagement ring made. We were planning our wedding even though we weren’t engaged officially, as we had set the date, and wanted to go full steam ahead with plans as soon as we got engaged. I was still teaching at a Performing Arts Academy (that the girls go to now), basically, I had a lot to distract my mind in this season.

Only at the 20 week scan (which was on my 29th birthday) did I fully accept this pregnancy and begin to plan accordingly. I had scheduled our apartment with the registry office to apply for our marriage license for later in the day just incase of any problems, and we had a holiday booked for the next day. We had a week in Paphos, Greece which we then treated as our babymoon as we knew all was ok.

20 week scan
20 week scan

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The Baby Diaries – Judah – Week One to Four (conception)

Baby Diaries

The things that I wrote in the beginning of my pregnancy journal for Judah aren’t actually about Judah.  This seems bizarre looking back, I had forgotten this had happened, and was too sad to throw it away and buy a new one, seemed wrong.

So, I have the record of the baby we conceived before Judah in his pregnancy journal. I wasn’t sure whether to document it here, but all of my thoughts still applied to Judah, I just didn’t really go through the same emotions when I found out I was pregnant with Judah as I was so scared of losing him, I didn’t fully embrace the pregnancy until 20 weeks and my brain allowed me to acknowledge there was a little life growing inside of me. I have taken the information out of my pregnancy journal so that Judah can see and decide how he feels about it all when he’s older. One thing he will know is he was so desperately wanted. He lit up the world when he arrived.

Below in italics is everything recorded in my handwritten journal

week one

Week One

I didn’t realise that this could be the month that I would get pregnant. My last period started on the 4th August 2011 (3 days late). I did a pregnancy test this week as I started spotting and though it was implantation bleeding. Test was negative (makes me wonder if I am indeed a month further along). James and I love each other very much. We were excited and planning a beautiful baby, we were disappointed when the test result came back negative. I had my routine smear and swabs at this point, all came back clear. Good start for baby.

Week Two

This was an interesting week, I drank a bit this week (unlike me), went out with friends and had a drink, not knowing that I would conceive at the end of this week. Went out to a club and got thrown across the floor by the owner (don’t ask). Luckily this incident didn’t happen a week later or it could have caused an early miscarriage and I would never have known I was carrying a beautiful baby. I received a 2 hour full body massage this week, Bess massaged my tummy and I felt something healing. Little did I know I would conceive around the next day. I felt like something good must be around the corner as everything keeps going wrong.

Week Three

How I felt when I found out I was pregnant

I didn’t find out at this stage, I was on holiday with my love at the end of this week. Had my last drink and gave up alcohol from the beginning of September. When I did a test a couple of weeks later I cried with happiness, I couldn’t believe it, I was overjoyed. I called James and then my mum straight away.

How my partner felt

In his words ‘I was elated and excited, very proud to make a baby with my beautiful lady. Impatient to see what baby looks like, if it’s going to look like it’s mummy. Very, very, very happy. Excited to tell people, Nanny and Grandad (of future baby) were very happy. Thinking little baby will be the cutest baby in the world…oh yeah! Yatta!!’

Week Four

How am I feeling this week?

Energy – low, weak, needed sugar, fainted after coming out of a cave.

Mood – happy, was on holiday, felt a bit low at points, insecure for some reason.

Appetite – Ravenous all the time, felt like a pig this week, ate a lot of crisps and chocolate.

Cravings – anything bad that week. Ate all the goodies James’ parents had taken to the cottage.

Sickness – threw up in the cottage, mainly bile, headaches were awful that week.

Notes

Had a glass and a half of wine this week as I didn’t know I was pregnant, ate like a pig (at least now I know why).

Although with Judah’s conception it was different as it was 10 days after I had miscarried this baby. Had I not miscarried, the hope that was around at the beginning of this babies pregnancy would’ve been the same for Judah’s. I was so excited to have bought the pregnancy journal and started filling it in straight away. We went straight off to the supermarket to buy fruit and vegetables so that I could eat right. I hadn’t gotten as far as filling in the next few weeks before I started miscarrying. Read about my ‘Saying Goodbye’ here.

The day we lit a Chinese lantern and released it in the park to say goodbye to this angel baby was the day I told my Mum and my sister that I was pregnant again. I had no idea what would happen from then on, or that it would result in my beautiful baby boy, but I felt I needed to at least tell them. We all knew that evening we had hope.
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