Party of Five

So here I am at almost 8 months pregnant and finally sharing my “Pregnancy journey”. I know right it sounds so corny. But I have had a lot of people ask how my pregnancy experience has been. So if you do care then bare with me while I waffle on.

Let me be honest in saying that having a third child at 39 in the middle of a global pandemic wasn’t exactly on the vision board.

After my second son was born 4 years ago hubby and I said “Two and through!” And for a few years we were adamant we didn’t want another child. Then we thought another child might be nice but we were undecided. It didn’t make sense financially or logistically. So we were actively trying not to conceive. Then I had some health issues and was on & off contraception and really thought at 38 that my “fertility window” (as my GP called it) was closing. So I guess we got a bit complacent. But clearly that fertility window was still wide open because here I am.

I have a regular cycle and get major PMS so when my period was late I initially thought nothing of it. I was tired. I was cranky. I was bloated. But its OK its just my period about to come. But it never did. I had a glass of wine one night and instantly felt sick. The next day I was so tired, like more than usual, and I started to join the dots. So I did a home test just to ease my mind. It was going to be negative. Of course it was going to be negative. I was so bloated. I was SO going to get my period. Well after instantly peeing on that stick the second line was there. Pregnant. By my calculations just over 5 weeks. Bloody hell.

“Poppy seed”- 7 weeks
I was really nervous to tell hubby but he just hugged me and said “Its going to be OK, it will all work out”.
The next day I went to the doctor to get a blood test to confirm. Oh and in the mean time I also did two more tests. Of course they were positive.
Doc suggested two blood tests two days apart to confirm my HCG levels were rising and that it was a “Viable pregnancy”. I was already getting morning sickness and that week felt like the longest ever until the Doctor called me to confirm that the levels were rising and I was 100% pregnant.

He recommended waiting until at least 7 weeks to get a dating scan but I was so eager and I was sure with my boys I had a scan right on 6 weeks.

So I held off and booked the scan in but even though I knew my dates, conception must have occurred a bit later as I was measuring right on 6 weeks, when I thought I was almost 7.  After an internal ultrasound all that could be seen on screen was a fetal pole and an empty sac on on the external ultrasound.  The sonographger also had no bedside manner and was not reassuring. It didn’t look like the pregnancy was viable and I was to go back in 7-10 days to confirm. I was devastated. Hubby was trying to reassure me and say it was probably just too early but I was convinced that little dot on screen would never progress. I have seen many friends suffer losses and knew that a positive pregnancy test didn’t always end up with a baby in their arms. So we waited.

5 days later I started spotting and thought the worst. This was it. We were losing our baby. I was hysterical. This was also the week that Coronavirus panic really hit and the news was filled with stories about everyone hoarding groceries and toilet paper.

I made a doctors appointment to get a scan referral and booked a scan for the next day at a different place to where I had my dating scan.

I was so nervous but the staff were amazing and straight away on the external ultrasound there was a strong heart beat. My little “Poppy seed” was growing. Due date also moved up.  The bleed was likely a small Sub Chronic Heomarage (that I had with both previous pregnancies) but I was told everything was tracking as well as could be expected at that point.

So now I was at ease about the pregnancy but freaking out about Coronavirus. What the hell was going on? What would things be like in October? What if I got sick? So much felt unknown.

A few weeks later things started closing down and restrictions were in place. All that aside I just wanted to get to the next scan. That was my countdown.
We decided to do the Harmony test. I was older. I was anxious and the test had a more accurate reading for Downs and other abnormalities.

It wasn’t cheap- $500- but we agreed it was the right thing to do. Previous pregnancies I don’t recall Harmony being so opening discussed or offered. Most people do the standard Nuchal screening at 12 weeks. But we needed reassurance. We also wanted to know the gender.

20 weeks- half way

As I was much sicker and the pregnancy just felt different I did wonder if I was having a girl. I had morning sickness that turned into all day sickness that felt like a 24/7 hangover. Fun!

The package we went with included a viability scan at 10 weeks to check dates and a heart beat then a blood test. Results 1 week later.

The scan was all fine and bloods very simple. Less than a week later I got a call to say we came back low risk for everything and we were having a girl. I cried with happiness.

I have often been asked what we would have done if the test did flag anything. Honestly I don’t know. We never had to make that decision and my heart goes out to anyone who does. But with two other kids and at this stage in our life it was important to us to know and be prepared.

We told the boys just after this that they were going to have a baby sister and they were both really excited.

The next part of the Harmony package was a structural scan at 14 weeks to check bubs growth. Again everything was fine. We started telling family and a few close friends after that. But decided with lockdown we weren’t really seeing anyone and it didn’t feel do a big public announcement. So for a while longer to felt like our little secret.

I registered again with the Midwife program at my local hospital, where I had the boys and had such amazing care. I was considered low risk so I wouldn’t have my first face to face appointment until after 20 weeks. Appointments were also spread out due to COVID. (Yup we are now saying just COVID)

In the meantime like everyone else we fumbled but survived through restrictions, school closures and working from home.

So the countdown was on to the 20 week scan. All went well and again we felt reassured but again- COVID.

Hubby was luckily allowed to attend all scan appointments.

My Midwife and GP kept reassuring me that pregnant woman weren’t at any higher risk for complications if we contacted COVID and just to keep up regular hygiene practices. But of course the worry was always there.

We decided at the half way mark to finally publicly announce the pregnancy. Lots of friends were surprised or felt hurt we hadn’t shared the news sooner. There were lots of “Oh wow was that an accident?!”- I hate that question!

So that pretty much wraps up the first 20 weeks! Oh wait lets not forget getting COVID tested at 25 weeks due to a sore throat and then falling and fracturing my foot at 27 weeks requiring a moon boot for possibly the duration of my pregnancy.

Screen Shot 2020-08-22 at 7.10.39 am
30 weeks

But here I am at 34 weeks. Very heavily pregnant and counting down the weeks until we meet our baby girl. I can’t believe we will soon be a family of five. I am nervous being that much older. Nervous how our lives will change. How the boys will adapt. Nervous about dropping down to one income. Nervous that we can’t give our baby girl her own room initially. But these things will work themselves out. As this is our last child I am trying to embrace the good and the bad.

I had two previous natural, uncomplicated deliveries and I am hoping for that again. But I am more open minded now to intervention if need be. Whatever is best for myself and bub.

Currently in NSW (and I don’t see it changing) there are no hospital visitors allowed other than your birth partner. I am OK with this. I will hopefully only stay one night and the boys will be at home with their nan and meet their baby sister when we bring her home.

Big love to anyone currently pregnant especially if you are birthing in Victoria. Its a hard enough time in normal circumstances.

NSW COVID numbers are thankfully tracking well and I hope this second waive passes but I think life will forever be different.

I am not having a baby shower and we won’t be so eager to introduce our baby girl to the world. I want to stay in our baby bubble for a while.

Hubby stands by those words he said when I first told him about the positive pregnancy test-   “Its going to be OK, it will all work out”. So every time I get anxious I repeat those words.

LK xox

One thought on “Party of Five

  1. What a great read.

    This is certainly a different pregnancy for you. When bub gets older you will be able to explain to her just how special she really is.



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