Note: This post was written in the 40th week of pregnancy. I will try to update soon with the story of Liam`s birth.
It’s a bit surreal for me to be working on this entry right now. I feel like I’ve had the fastest pregnancy of history, and yet when I look back, it feels almost like a lifetime has passed since we were TTC. Now that you’ve heard about how the little man arrived, here’s a quick look back at the last year or so. Bear in mind that this post is TMI in nature:
How TTC Went For Us (ie: Things My Teenaged Self Totally Got Wrong About Baby Making)
I started on the pill when I was 15 or so. I had awful cramps and raging hormones, so it seemed like a good fit. I’m sure its no surprise that within the next couple of years I became sexually active. I remember worrying constantly about OMGWHATIFI”MPREGNANTACK if I were even an hour or two late. My period was so predictable I could tell almost what hour it was supposed to start. I had a few friends in high school who were pregnant, and it instilled this fear in me that it could happen anytime and with the smallest of errors when it came to birth control.
This, of course, made me think that when I wanted to have babies that all I had to do was enjoy some unprotected sexy time and VOILA! Babies! Well, I have since learned that a 27 year old body that had been on the pill for 12 years isn’t nearly as on board with making babies as I though it would be. It took about 10 months for us to get pregnant.
Things that helped us (keeping in mind that this could be coincidental, and is mostly me just talking from our experience):
–Taking Charge of Your Fertility. My SIL gave me this book to read and it completely changed the way I looked at my body and my understanding of reproduction. It is THE book for those thinking about charting (and not just for baby making, but to know your body better and for family planning)
–Fertility Friend. Consider for a moment that I started the pill at 15. I had only been having my period for about 2-3 years, and hadn’t really figured out my cycle yet. It was a massive shock to me, at 27, to start charting. I had no idea that my cycles would vary so much. This page made the charting process so much easier for me and thanks to my charting, I had a much more accurate idea of my due date.
–Knitters Trying to Conceive. This group on Ravelry was a huge source of support and information to me through the TTC process.
–Baby Bells/Canadian Family Starting A Family Forum I practically lived on these forums while we were TTC. Once a part of the WeddingBells/BabyBells family of forums, these folks are great about providing support, information and their own personal experiences. Super helpful.
–Ovulation Kits. We went the cheapy Ebay route for these. While they weren’t a GREAT help, they did give me something to focus on and made me feel like I was doing something to catch the window of opportunity.
–Clear Blue Pregnancy Tests. Ok, seriously, I used the cheapy tests, I used First Response and I’ve tried these. Clear Blue was the only one that made me feel confident about the results. I got a couple false positives from the others, and that’s so heart breaking when you’re TTC. In the future I’ll know to just stick with Clear Blue.
-Guaifenesin. Yep, like what you find in cough syrup or Mucinex. I’ll let you do the research, but I’ll just say it worked for us.
At the end of the day, charting didn’t get us pregnant. Neither did cough syrup. If anything, it didn’t happen until we had decided to take a bit of a break from actively trying and went away for a weekend of fun. I know the stress of working on my mother’s estate couldn’t have been helping anything, and in the early summer I had a chemical pregnancy (very early miscarriage). Letting go and relaxing seemed to be the biggest help for us.
The First Trimester (ie: The secret that wasn’t):
Because I can’t get enough of telling this story, I’ll share it again. I’ll never forget the morning I found out we were pregnant. I had wanted to sleep in a bit, but had to pee. It was a Saturday, and I didn’t want to test too early and have to wake Pat up to share the news (whether it was positive or not). We had tested a couple times already on the cheapy tests and a First response, but after some unreliable results in the past, I didn’t trust it. It was THE morning we were going to test with a Clear Blue. I was super nervous.
Eventually, I couldn’t hold it anymore so I tested anyway and was shocked and thrilled at the “Pregnant” that popped up on the tiny little screen. I went back to the bedroom and shook Pat awake. I told him that the test had been positive. He, unfortunately, was not quite awake and muttered sleepily to me “Congratulations” before rolling back over. I sort of sat there dazed for a second, before laughing and waking him up fully.
Aside from telling my sister, we decided to wait to tell anyone else until I was about 3 months in. I had known a few people who had recently had miscarriages and who were TTC, so I didn’t want to share the news until we were sure. Unfortunately, I made a post on here about a secret craft project and my in-laws put the pieces together and called me on it. I was 5 weeks in, and refused to lie about it. So, we made our announcement to family then and then several weeks later, in September, announced it on facebook to the rest of the world.
My first trimester was pretty standard to be honest. I had morning sickness (or rather all-day sickness that was really only helped by copious amounts of gold fish crackers and ginger and lemon tea). I pretty much survived on starchy carbs until October when my appetite changed a bit and I entered the 2nd Trimester). I caught a terrible cold that really scared me early on. I had a bad fever, and ended up nearly in the ER for dehydration, but ended up ok.
The Second Trimester (ie: Yay! I feel Awesome! Mostly. Kind of.)
Unfortunately, while I was feeling great most of the time, family and estate drama picked up which left me an emotional mess. There was a return of nausea and extreme exhaustion, body aches, as well as lovely mood swings to keep things interesting. Oh, and I caught another cold. Wee! Fun times! Oh, and my boobs got HUGE all of a sudden. Despite being uncomfortable, I felt gorgeously pregnant and curvy. We did find out during this time that we were having a boy, which was amazing. Also, I started being able to feel him squirm around.
It was the holidays, which was a tough time for me, especially being pregnant. I so deeply missed my parents. On the plus side, my friends really stepped up and became my second family. I felt hugely supported and loved.
The Third Trimester (ie: Ow, waddle and enough is enough)
The third trimester started in the new year (fitting I’d say). it was a major time of beginnings and endings: I cut my hair, got bangs, we got the renovations started and mostly finished. We did our prenatal classes and loved them. We completed the estate, we sold my old dead car and bought a new one. I left my job much earlier than expected and managed to visit with my sister. I started up a family website. We did maternity photos and set up the nursery. We settled into our house.
The downs? Bad swelling, a bad incident of spotting, norovirus, many aches and pains, lack of sleep. Pressure to deliver “on time”, work stress, braxton hicks.
Of course, the third trimester wraps up with the birth of a baby. That epic tale is coming soon! I promise :)