My pregnancy journey so far...
I'm 37 & this is my first pregnancy. I've always worried about my fertility chances after my mum sadly suffered with endometriosis preventing her & my stepdad from having a baby. After my period pains getting a lot worse last year & having problems with flushing on my face I was convinced I had the same hereditary condition so persisted with my GP to have a laparoscopy (which is the only way they can see if you have it) & was only referred to the hospital after seeing a female doctor who seemed to empathise more...
So under the knife I went last Christmas to be told when I was drearily coming round from surgery that I did have a small amount of endo. on my left side which they had removed and shouldn't come back. Apparently the best thing to make sure it didn't was to either go on the pill to control it or to get pregnant. As we were planning to get married in September I didn't really want to be pregnant for the big day & wasn't really up for popping a pill every day that could mess with my hormones!
It was bittersweet to know that it was endo. as I was happy I knew what it was but worried about if affecting my fertility - for my birthday 2 days before Christmas I did a charity fundraiser for Endometriosis UK raising a few hundred quid but more to highlight the importance of undiagnosed this mystery illness is
Preggers AF (thats as f**k & Alexis Fletcher!), our latest scan, at dinner the day after we found out & NYE celebrations!
We decided that we would start casually trying after the wedding but then COVID-19 struck, yay! In June we decided to delay the wedding til May 20201 & to casually start trying for a baby (even though I was convinced I couldn't conceive) but stop to leave enough time to be bump free on my wedding day... after 2 unsuccessful months of trying (even though we were keeping it very relaxed) we thought we should maybe just carry on as there was a chance we may have to delay the wedding again & we weren't getting any younger :(
During lockdown I had decided I wanted to do my pregnancy yoga training (I'd touched on pre & post natal training in my personal training & yoga qualifications) but wanted to deepen my practice & Yoga Mama were doing an online training (when I was actually supposed to doing another yoga training in London with my amazing teacher Suzanne Faith at the beautiful Union Station in London which had unfortunately been cancelled because of the virus) So I went for it and glad I did - noticing I was one of the only ones on the training without a baby or being pregnant didn't make me feel out of place... Cherie & all of her staff were lovely & I still chat now with the other girls on the training, with lots of updates of new babies!
After teaching my Flexy Mama classes throughout lockdown & still to this day online I then wanted to be able to safely teach the girls after they had given birth or had a C-section to come back & practice with me. So back I went back to Yoga Mama for the post-natal online training! Again it was a lovely course & made me feel even more broody with some of the girls using their babies as models in the baby yoga training part... I then realised I was day late on my period & had an inkling I should go & get a test. As soon as I closed my laptop I ran to Boots & all in a hurry came back & did to see it was positive :)
The growing bump...
That first week was a bit of a blur... feeling up and down about our news as well as feeling tired & achy (although not sure if that was psychological!) I was shocked to learn that my GP surgery 'didn't deal with maternity patients' & after contacting the midwife was told I would receive a hospital appointment in the next 4-6 weeks. Was that it? Just left in the big wide world to deal with growing a baby human inside me?
I found a place doing early scans just around the corner, Lollilpop NQ, but even another 3 weeks felt an age away, more so as I'd been getting some funny pains in my tummy and stupidly reading up on ectopic pregnancies. The odds were stacked against me in terms of my age, having endo & my party lifestyle, although I am generally healthy because of my job. The bonding scan definitely put my mind at ease & it was so nice we could both be there to see the little dots heartbeat... there were happy tears for sure!
I had my flu jab not long after & thats when I noticed I started to feel a bit rubbish... I'm not sure it was related but nausea kicked in just before 7 weeks. It really floored me, I'm used to feeling pretty perky (apart from when I'm hungover!) & very aware of my body but this all day feeling of wanting to be sick but not actually being sick was out of my control! I tried all the ginger products out there but they didn't really help (and now the thought of if makes me want to vom!) acupuncture-which was lovely but I think its a placebo effect which helps but wasn't enough for me. I ended up with prescribed anti-sickness tablets from the GP which helped massively :)
I had my first midwife appointment at the hospital at 10 weeks with blood tests and booked full screens, it was a hard decision to do the downs syndrome one but everything came back low risk and after my 12 week scan I decided it was OK to tell people. I always questioned why we had to keep it under wraps, I understand you shouldn't 'jinx' it but I also feel that if you want to tell your close friends (the ones who you might want comfort from if your were to awfully have a miscarriage) then why not?
Starting to decorate his room, gather cute clothes & buy essentials already :)
It was such a shame Martial couldn't come to the first scan at the hospital so we decided to book a private gender scan it at 15 weeks so he could see how the little dot had come along! And at the same time we could find out the sex of the baby :)
Finding out we are having a boy was a real joy (it also explained the cravings for everything beige and salty) To be able to now call him a him rather than an it (although Martial had already been calling him a him because of the French translation to it!) makes it all seem so much more real & whenever I used to think of having children I always imagined myself having boy then a girl so she would have an older brother to look after her... whether it will turn out like that let's see...
I then had a scare of a blood clot on my lung which pregnant women are more susceptible to & after a few stressful days leading to the all clear I felt like I could now finally start enjoying my pregnancy journey - it was really tough with the tiredness & sickness. An electric blanket (rather than a hot water bottle which gave me bruising on my belly) and pregnancy pillow (along with an my Nightire eyemask & earplugs I sleep with) were a god send!
Lockdown has also made it a bit of a strange experience not being able to see friends & family as often & even connecting with other pregnant people at classes etc. I'm carrying on teaching my classes online which is a great tool for me & my students to connect and have been treating myself to massages. We managed to get away just before the last lockdown to Mottram Hall in Chershire where the spa is amazing & the pregnancy massage was so good we went again just before Christmas! Also Lisa at Brooklyn Wellness in Chorlton gave me a lovely massage-can't wait to go back after this lockdown! At least I have a massage chair at home and a willing partner ;)
It's also been great having networks such as Peanut & Mush to meet new mums & mums to be, and have the educational & fun videos/Zooms from Mush (which I've also contributed to with my pre & post natal yoga classes!)
Elasticated/high waisted clothes & underwear are a must!
Christmas was different for everyone this year I guess and even more so for me being booze free but we had a really lovely time just being with my family and reading French Children Don't Throw Food (a present from my mum) mainlining Quality Street & making a dent in the sofa. We also had loads of fun just the two of us on NYE, which mainly involved me watching him get drunk!
We had the 20 week scan at the start of 2021 which was nice to see everything was fine, he was wriggling a lot and at first they thought I had a low lying placenta but it was because I'd drank loads of water (maybe too much!) so it was pushing everything down
Now in the new year as grim as it with the lockdown I'm feeling my best, getting back into exercise with BLOK (special shout out to Georgina for her burning barre & sculpt classes, Tomas for his super strong strength and Kate for her hardcore blokfit) & Sclupt in Haus classes with the amazing and fellow pregnant gal Amy! I recently had to stop running as it gave me too much pain, almost like a stitch after 5 minutes of tuning super slow even/ I tried a support belt but made no difference so got a BKOOL trainer for my Brompton and have started doing the spinning classes.
This Dry January has been the easiest for me but I'll be honest I am looking forward to having the odd glass of fizz here and there (all natural from Funky Wines of course!) I've read its ok to have 2 units twice a week so I'll go with that, and TBH haven't even being having that... I still have the odd pang for junk food but guess thats normal and although I did a refined sugar free Jan I don't think it will ever kick my sweet tooth! I find having sugar free mints and fresh lemon/lime with soda is very satisfying and can some kick the odd bit of nausea that may drift in.
I'm definitely eating a lot more than I used to, usually I'd have a water & hot lemon in the morning which I haven't able to stomach, I now start my day with cereal or something on toast! I still enjoy my Ancoats Coffee but one shot of espresso now then maybe a kombucha or a turmeric latte in the afternoon if I need a pick me up... still trying to have healthy lunches and dinners with protein and lots of salad/veg and a smoothie instead of a juice for more fibre.
Eyemask, relaxation & good times are also a must!
Now in my third trimester...
I'm noticing the pile of 'too small' clothes is getting bigger & bigger, as well as my bump. I'm really enjoying teaching still and its nice that in a few months I'll be able to use a real baby in stead of a doll for my mum & baby classes, and hopefully in person! I've put on the usual 2lbs during the first 3 months & roughly 1 pound a week up to now which will continue and 7% body fat which should taper off - but my view of my body has changed so much. I'm growing a tiny human & am actually amazed by my curves!
We're also due to start an online hypnobirthing course next month with the wonderful Charlotte owner of Positiva Hypnobirthing, who happens to be one of my best friends, mama to 2 boys & a bridesmaid for me when I eventually get married... I'm hoping the course will of course help me with any anxieties of the pregnancy journey and childbirth but at the moment we're really struggling to make a choice on a home birth or not!
And just a note to end on - for anyone newly pregnant who's maybe feeling anxieties about it changing they're relationship (which was my first worry) Martial said something that really stuck with me when I said I was really enjoying our time together, just me & him and didn't want this to affect it... 'We'll still be me & you, just with the addition of a little bit of me & a little bit of you'
Maybe I'll update you again before he arrives, just depends if my arms can still reach the laptop ;)
I'll be continuing to teach my pre & post natal & normal yoga classes (aswell as my corporate classes for places like boohoo HQ & Broadside) for as long as I can - with classes every day apart from Friday there'll no doubt be something for you! I would love to see you on screen soon - just mention the blog for a free class :)