Injections and indifference
By Catherine Hudson, editor of FashTravels
FashBaby: A whole new kind of adventure hosted at FashTravels. Here, you’ll find a weekly diary of my pregnancy journey.
Call the midwife (again)
Don’t like injections and giving blood? Pregnancy will test this fear. I;m not fearful of these things, but I’m not a huge fan, and this week, I had seven vials of blood taken in one sitting. Among the things tested for were iron levels and retesting my blood type. And I can’t remember the rest. I asked to talk to the midwife about something else while she was taking blood, to distract me, and after a few minutes thinking, blimey, I’ve been talking for ages. Then noticing that that little tray had filled up with a lot of bottles of my thick red blood. My midwife appointments are ramping up now. I’m not sure exactly how frequent they are overall, in the last trimester, but I seem to have to go every three weeks to be checked – injected, hear baby’s heartbeat, discuss anything that isn’t ‘normal’ etc. But there lies the rub. What is ‘normal’? “Do you feel normal?”, “Are your baby’s movements normal?”, I’m asked. “Erm, normal compared to what?” I hear it’s ‘normal’ for the baby to be hiccuping now – my baby has not hiccuped. I don’t think… Why is my baby ‘abnormal’? And my book tells me now need to count the baby kicks I feel, but the midwife just said to monitor what is ‘normal’ for me. There’s that ‘n’ word, again.
Sadly, I’ve only seen the same midwife, twice. Otherwise, it’s a different, largely indifferent, face every time. I was feeling a little low about this. A bit hurried through my appointments and always leaving a bit more confused than when I went in. Don’t get me started on glucose tests and whether you need one – best to press your own midwife on that one. Then, this weekend, things didn’t feel ‘normal’. After lots of deliberating, and a rubbish time trying to get advice on the phone, I headed to my hospital’s labour ward feeling sure I would be told I was being an inconvenience. Couldn’t have been more wrong. All of the midwifes and doctors (yes, there were multiple), were kind and attentive, and I spent 2.5 hours hooked up to a heart rate (for baby and I) monitor and pain monitor, had my temperature and pulse taken, and urine checked.
The moral of this story, I’d say, is to trust that instinct everyone says you have. If everything is ok, then you’ll get a good night’s sleep. If something is up, you’ll be in the best place to get it sorted. The team that helped me were so friendly and reassuring, that my faith in the system was renewed and I left with a clean bill of health for us both, and feeling very happy with my choice of hospital. Plus, the midwife I had seen earlier this week at the GP called me up to give me my blood test results – all clear and, yep, normal! I really appreciated her calling as I knew she didn’t have to. Most of the time you are told ‘no news is good news’.
It all makes it all feel a lot more real. This keeps happening, these moments of ‘realism’. ‘Real’, I can relate to. I can’t help but feel that ‘normal’ sets you up to worry and fail.
* I must prelude anything I write in this blog series as totally my own experiences and opinions. I’ve already learned to prefix everything I say in general conversation about pregnancy and babies with, ‘everyone’s different, but…’
You can follow me @fash.baby and @fashcatherine
Inside my baby brain…
Things I am loving, this week
- Announcing our baby’s gender – It’s a girl! Weren’t bother before we knew, was only concerned that baby was healthy. Now we know, we are totally thrilled.
- Cinnamon – On everything! I love it on cereal (Cinnamon Grahams), in curries, in muffins, and especially in those pretzel doughnut things I buy at Westfield.
- ‘That look’ from other mums – Y’know, the one that is sympathetic or knowing, but not in a patronising way, just in a nice, team like way. I experienced this when I was carrying some baby bits home.
Things I am loathing, this week
- The smell of bacon cooking – Just makes me want to throw up.
- Inanimate objects – Yes, you grooves in the escalator stairs, you. You tripped me up! How dare you. Raging.
- Television game shows – Rubbish and cheesy at the best of times, but right now? Maddening. Can’t even hear the music and dings of buzzers without becoming annoyed.
- Braxton hicks contractions – Those things I thought were the baby pushing up against my tummy wall really hard? Turns out they are ‘practise contractions’! Braxton Hicks! I feel like Rachel in Friends.
Read my column every week here on FashBaby (a whole new kind of adventure) at FashTravels.com, to follow my pregnancy journey
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Introduction: Weeks 0-18
Hello, my name is Catherine and I‘m pregnant!
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 19
Hearing the heartbeat and telling people
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 20
Sleeping, 20-week scan and nesting
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 21
Confidence, quiet time and trial runs
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 22
The one where we went on a babymoon to Sri Lanka
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 23
Bathtime, being lazy and shaving rules
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 24
We’re a team, baby – you, me and…
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 25
Seeing your baby in 4D – what is it and is it a good idea?
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 26
Christmas, acid reflux and wondering who I am
- The pregnancy diaries: ‘I’m pregnant. Now what?’ – Week 27
Being stuck in limbo and working 9am – 5pm/6pm/7pm…