Pregnancy Kicked My Ass

So, obviously it has been a while since I last posted and that is simply because – PREGNANCY KICKED MY ASS!!!

Sorry if that offends anyone, but seriously it is so true.

I’ve tried and tried repeatedly to get myself writing but it has just not happened. I have been so tired and exhausted and literally dead on my feet EVERY day that it was barely possible for me to function as a basic human never mind anything further.

Now that it’s over and my little man is finally here I am so grateful that I am not pregnant any more. I feel awful that every morning I wake up and think “thank god it is over!” I know that I should be thankful that I managed to conceive, carry and birth a healthy happy baby – and believe me I am. Yet, I reiterate – PREGNANCY KICKED MY ASS!!!

Line Severinsen’s book of comics about pregnancy is hilarious and worth a look.

I struggled with Pelvic Girdle Pain, horrific heartburn, sickness throughout my pregnancy, sheer exhaustion and oh just being ridiculous uncomfortable. By the end of my pregnancy I was attending weekly physiotherapy sessions for my PGP and basically living on the sofa as any movement at all was horrifically painful.

Basically I am writing this post as a bit of catharsis, because I know how lucky I am to have my baby boy here. However, I feel really guilty for feeling so awful and hating pregnancy so much. I feel like I am mocking women who aren’t able to get pregnant or have happy healthy babies of their own. But I need to remember that by hating pregnancy, I am not mocking them or minimising their experiences. I need to remember that I am entitled to acknowledge that I was uncomfortable and I really couldn’t wait for the experience to be over. I need to remember that every woman’s experiences of fertility is valid and not to be ignored.

Looking at the discussions about pregnancy and women’s experiences you can see that it is fraught and difficult. Firstly because it is a difficult experience, not necessarily a bad one for every one, but the process of getting pregnant, carrying to term and birthing a human being is complicated no matter who you are. Secondly, because of the way that people treat women regarding their fertility – from constantly asking “so when are you going to pop one out” right through to treating pregnant women as public property (something I’m going to go more into). Finally, the way that the woman feels about the whole process is something no one can quite quantify and yet is judged and picked apart at every stage.

Anyway! I am now three weeks postpartum and I am currently juggling my laptop, bouncing the bouncy chair with my foot and repeatedly sticking the dummy back in my little boy’s adorable gob (why has dummy sellotape not been invented?!). As you can tell if you have got this far, my writing is rusty and my brain a bit like mush – but – I am glad to be at least giving it a go!

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The painful painful joy…

The moment a friend calls, messages or arranges to see you and then goes on to present you with that grainy black and white blurry image, the first picture of their soon-to-be bundle of joy. Oh it is lovely, heart warming and exciting isn’t it?

That is, unless, you are on the trying to conceive journey yourself.

Then your heart starts to sink, your throat starts to tighten and the corners of your eyes to start prick. Your head is going into overdrive, trying to calm yourself down, present a strong front, don’t cave, be a grown up.

Then it is just straight painful, in more ways than one.

First, there is the selfish kick that takes over you, the jealousy that they got the thing that you want the most. Their hopes and dreams had been answered, but yours haven’t. This feeling is almost overpowering as it engulfs you that the thing that you have been hoping, trying and praying for has come to someone else.

Secondly, you feel like a horrible person as instead of being excited for your friend and loved one you have jumped straight to thinking about yourself. When actually, you are very happy for your friend, that they have now got the chance to embark on such fantastic journey and welcome a new little person into their lives.

You want to go through this journey with them and enjoy each minute. You want to look at little socks and scratch mitts with them without breaking down inside wishing it was you and not them. So what do you do? Do you tell them? Do you bottle it up inside? I suppose the answers to these totally depend on who the person is to you.

The alternative is of course, when it isn’t a grainy blurry photo but instead a teary phone call or a white face at the door asking for help and advice. Then of course, you really do have to pull yourself together and support your friend through their feelings and decisions, because right now what you want and what you think doesn’t matter. That’s the way it should be, because as painful as it is for you talking about this; getting pregnant is a personal thing and you can’t pin your hopes, dreams and feelings on other people’s experiences.

Anyway, the reason I wanted to write this post is just to show that you are not alone and it is totally normal to feel these things. When you are trying for your own child, no matter how long you have been trying, it is always difficult to deal with the totally messed up mash of emotions when a friend or family member tells you that they are expecting. The best way I have found of coping in these situations is to let myself wallow for a small period of time, assuming that the person hasn’t told me face to face I can have five minutes to cry it out, or sulk like a proper grown up. If the husband is feeling particularly loving I might get a hug and a consoling pat, as a Yorkshire man that’s about as effusive as he gets. Then I log onto MumsnetMumsnet or Babycentre and talk to some of the longterm groups I am on, or just have a nosy at other people’s posts and stories and this helps me feel a bit more normal, reminds me that other people feel like this. Then I focus on the positive, my friend/family member is soon going to be welcoming a squishy little bundle that I can coo over and spoil.

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Oh Christmas Tree, you’re leaves are such a pain to pack…

Christmas Tree Undecorated

Here is my question for today – when do you take your Christmas Tree down? This includes those with fake trees and real trees!

Traditionally Christmas finishes on the 6th January and this is when trees Christmas Tree Lightsusually come down, well at least as far as I’m aware. This is also the day that traditionally my husband and myself take ours down, but I am starting to realise this isn’t the norm.

My Mum for example? If she had a choice her tree would be down Boxing Day morning. Seriously by the end of Christmas Day you can see her twitching and ready to get “tidying”, as it is we only manage to hold her off until around the 28th at the latest and this is a woman who loves Christmas. She usually has her tree up by the last weekend in November!

Christmas Tree BaublesOn Instagram and Twitter as well the last few days I have taken note of the number of people who have already taken down their tree. BEFORE NEW YEARS EVE! What the hell dudes? I mean come on, I thought my mum was odd and alone in the tidy tidy tidy brigade – but is she really?

Personally I’m not crazy on Christmas, but I love having my tree and decorations up until at least the days after New Years and ideally take it down on the 6th. This year I am a little bit gutted as we have friends coming to stay and it will have to come down sooner so we can get all the paraphernalia out of the spare room and back in the attic.

But I will miss my tree and my fairy lights, they make my house so pretty!

Christmas Tree Stages

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New Years Resolutions?

Last year I wrote a post about my new years resolutions, to get healthy not thin, this is still sort of the plan but less of a dedication and more of a general way of life. This year I’m not really sure if I want to make a resolution, or if I did what should it be?

Getting healthy was all part of my excited, looking forward, eager to get started and become a Mum kick. A year on a bit of that has faded, who am I kidding? A lot of that has faded. I think everyone goes into the process of trying to conceive eager and a little bit blind to reality. The number of times I exclaimed “I know it could take a while and there might be issues, but I’m ready for that” and I honestly thought I was. I thought I was prepared and ready for all that it had to throw at me. Boy was I wrong. So SO wrong.

The emotions of this process are inevitably exaggerated by the associated hormones, as well as the undeniable longing for this something. Most people don’t tend to have any problems when conceiving, even if it does take time, so in theory it is pretty much guaranteed when you start trying. So why is it not easier to achieve? Why is there not more research? Why do I only have a 1 in 5 chance of getting pregnant each month – even when I do everything right? Even when I follow my new years resolutions and behave and be healthy and follow all the tips. I don’t know and neither does my doctor, it’s just life, it’ll happen, just relax and enjoy it…

Trying not to sound like I’m on a downer is difficult when reality sets in, because I am still positive and keeping my head up and excited about what the possibilities are each month. But it is undeniably a shit process and generally makes you feel shit at least once a month, no matter how proactive you are and how much positive thinking you do.

With all this in mind I think instead of focussing on new years resolutions, what I am going to do instead is focus on the way I think and act. I’m not going to let the “LOSE weight”, “only eat salads”, “no sugar diet”, “become ‘healthy'” police bully me into a resolution I don’t want. This will be an effort in and of itself working in education, if you have ever worked in education you will understand the madness that takes hold every January.

So what I will do?

British Book Challenge 2017

Well I will focus more on doing things that make me happy like reading, a lot. This is why I have signed up to the British Book Challenge 2017 and have a lovely great big stack of books ready to get stuck into. This will also help to keep me distracted – even in the dreaded two week wait! I have also set myself a personal goal of aiming for 52 books read by this time next year.

I will also blog more, writing is something I’ve always enjoyed even if I’m not very good at it! This will also hopefully help me improve my confidence levels as I focus not only on book reviews but clothing reviews as well. This will mean *gulp* photos of me on the tinterweb for all sorts of people to gawp at and recoil in horror, well I hope not but you get the picture.

THINK POSITIVE AND RELAX. Ugh just writing that I can feel my blood pressure rise, but its a good thing to commit to I suppose. Not so much in that it will “help” us get pregnant, more that it will help me to deal with disappointments and the down days.

So with those sort of new years resolutions and as I technically still have one day of 2016 left, what to do? I know! Amazon book sales…

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Carrie Fisher

Carrie Fisher - Leia at the beach

I can’t let this one go by without posting something. Today 2016 took the great Carrie Fisher.

I’m not going to go into any detail about her life because others will do that so much better, but I have to say something about the woman who was a big influence on my early life.

As the daughter, sister and wife of nerds and a fully blown geek in my own right Carrie provided a character I couldn’t help but love. She was strong, intelligent, sassy, brave and by god she could kick ass – what more can a girl want to look up to?

Whilst I always loved Disney and have vivid memories of dancing around with a tea towel on my head, Leia Organa was the princess my childhood needed. She inspired me to believe that a woman could do more than just be beautiful, wear a pretty dress and wait to be saved by a man. I mean seriously, Han and Luke couldn’t even rescue her without her help!

Carrie Fisher - Star Wars V

So with that, I am going to retreat to the twitter-sphere and send protective thoughts to all the other greats still going.

2016 you are an utter twat.

RIP Carrie Fisher.

Carrie Fisher - Star Wars 7

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The day after the day after…

Soooo… What did you do this day that is the day after the day after?

Did you go for a walk? Tidy up? Play with your new toys? Put your new toys away? Veg on the sofa watching crap tv?

It may be a bit odd but I’m really curious about this. My social media is filled with all sorts of variations. From the unbearably smug matching running outfits with matching ear muff couples out on hills “burning off the turkey”. Those who have spent the day elbowing and fighting through the sales, be it online or in person. Those who have collapsed and put the electronic babysitter on whilst they snored all day. To the total weirdos who have gutted, cleaned, stripped and taken down all signs of Christmas (including filing away all gifts), basically people like my mother. 

Me? What have I done? Well I’ve slept, a lot. Cuddled in my insanely comfy and soft and fluffy and beautiful new dressing gown. I’ve watched crappy tv and eaten my body weight in junk food. And since I’m ill and feeling sorry for myself I’ve spent way too much money on clothes I have no room for… reckon IKEA have a sale on wardrobes?

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