When I went to Mexico, I brought along my kindle. I didn’t read as much as I normally do on vacation, since we were surrounded by friends and much more socializing took place. I started a new book while I was there though, A Million Little Mistakes by Heather McElhatton. I had previously read her book, Pretty Little Mistakes, during a different Mexico trip. Both of these books are adult (specifically, for women) “choose your own adventure” books. Remember those from when you were a kid? Well, I thought it was a fun idea and it would make a light beach read. I enjoyed Pretty Little Mistakes, even though it’s far from a literary gem. I didn’t really enjoy A Million Little Mistakes. I guess one totally vapid, often ludicrous choose your own adventure book was enough for my adult lifetime. Maybe it’s my imagination, but the scenarios in A Million Little Mistakes seemed much crazier too. For example, in one storyline, I was raped by a chimpanzee. I find that tasteless and disturbing. However, my curiosity got the best of me and I had to finish reading every possible outcome and storyline. It took me forever since this was during my first trimester and I was so tired. It was also difficult to get through it because there wasn’t a cohesive storyline with characters you care about, so there wasn’t the drive to find out what happens next. Instead, it felt never ending! But finally, it ended and I have moved on to another “fluff” read, but at least it’s proving more enjoyable. I’ll blog about that one once I’ve finished it.
Join the Movement…. This post has lots of funny infertility-related someecards that I can relate to.
I had my NT scan today. The results were all low risk, which is a huge relief! And as the super added bonus, we got to see our Jujube! He or she was kicking legs, waving arms and hands, and had hiccups that were enough to make the whole body jump! I was told that I am measuring at the original due date I was given. So my due date is once again October 28th. This means I “skipped” 6 days of pregnancy and jumped from 12 weeks, 2 days to 13 weeks, 1 day. I am officially in my second trimester!
The saga of dumb, ignorant comments continued today, but this time they were of a different sort. I have this coworker who frequently makes ignorant and impulsive comments. Today was no exception. To preface this, I will state that I am short and a redhead (albeit it’s more of a subtle light reddish brown with natural blonde highlights than a flame red). This girl said, “I hope if you have a boy he isn’t short or redheaded!” Her tone was serious and insulting, as if this would be such a horrible thing. I sarcastically said thanks and it’s not like it would change how I feel about my baby. She tried to justify her comment by saying that redhead and/or short boys tend not to get the girl. It was just the most asinine thing to say. I felt very defensive of my baby and it also seemed like the vainest, stupidest thing to say. Another coworker then said that her son is short (at the 3rd percentile), yet this inappropriate girl didn’t even seem phased and continued with questions and comments. When I told J, his response was, “And so what if he was?!” Thank you husband for the perfect response! It’s true, so what if he is. I sometimes worry about the health of my baby, even though a health condition wouldn’t change my love. However, worrying about my baby’s height, hair color, or general appearance is not even on the radar and nor should it be on anyone else’s!
Apparently announcing my pregnancy has opened the flood gates to unsolicited comments about my body. First off, I’ll say that announcing the pregnancy was fun and the messages of congratulations and well wishes were touching. Here’s how I announced on Facebook:
The journey was longer than anticipated, but we are thrilled to announce that I’m knocked up, expecting, in a family way, baking a bun in my oven, in a delicate condition, eating for two, with child . . . Baby W is due November 3!
And here’s what J posted (facetiously):
It’s true. I am going to be a father unless Maury Povich tells me otherwise.
I told some coworkers first thing on Wednesday morning. The were very excited as they knew about the struggles we were having. I had to see a client right after, so I didn’t get to talk to anyone else. Once I was done with my client, I was told that some other employees in different departments wanted to see me, to ask me questions. The way it was said, it was pretty obvious that they were catching on. I figured they were catching on to the buzz around the office, but apparently it was due to how I look. One person said she wondered weeks ago because there was a “pregnant look” to my face (I assume she means a glow and not a rounder face and acne). Another coworker, the school librarian, had self-elected to ask me if I was pregnant since a group of them were whispering and wondering. She didn’t get the chance because I heard and approached her. When I confirmed the pregnancy and told her I was (at the time) 11.5 weeks, she was floored. She asked if I took fertility drugs (she saw me taking my herbs before and I told her why). I said no. Anticipating her response, I also threw in that I was only having one baby. She replied, “Are you sure?!” Now this woman is great! She is hilarious and straightforward. I could (mostly) laugh off their comments, but I felt a bit self-conscious that my bump is probably larger than most at this point (I think I’m extra bloated in the above picture). Another woman, who I also really like, told me I am huge today. I playfully gave her a hard time. I also relayed the story below (sorry for the lack of chronological accuracy). Another pregnant coworker told me to prepare for lots of rude comments and that at 6 months, she has been asked when she’s due since it “must be any day now.”
On the weekend, J and I went to Jasper, AB (in the Rocky Mountains . . . . soooo beautiful!) for his work event. J proudly introduced me and announced that I am carrying his first child. When people asked how far along I am, I felt a little embarrassed that I couldn’t say I was further along. I felt like my stomach and my week count were incongruous. I am not ashamed of my bump. I love it actually, but comments from others have made me feel self-conscious and worried that I’m growing too much too fast. This all came to a head at a company dinner. It was an upscale, 4-course meal. The dress I wore is fitted and my bump was visible. At the end of the day, following a big meal, I was likely extra bloated. I got up to use the restroom. When I returned to my seat, a VP with my husband’s company came over to say that our baby will be huge since I’m only 3 months and already so big. He kept going and going. Others around us could hear him and they could see my face. I could feel myself blush. I have never felt so humiliated. Once he finally left us alone, J turned to me and said, “That was more insulting than anything wasn’t it?” I was fighting back tears and his comment was enough to set me off. I tried to hide it and I hope I was successful as I would hate for J’s coworkers to see me in tears. We left and walked back to our room. When we got inside, I went to the bathroom and began sobbing. J must have heard me because he knocked on the door, looked at me with concern, held out his arms and said, “I don’t agree with him.” It took me awhile to let go of the humiliated feeling. I was still concerned about it when I put my dress on for the gala the next night. I was worried that I would look huge again! Maybe all of that sounds horribly vain. At the end of the day, I will blow up as much as needed to ensure a healthy, living baby. But all of this drove home the idea that if you wouldn’t say it to a non-pregnant woman, don’t say it to a pregnant woman. We care about body image too and it can be hard to come to terms with all the changes that are going on, even when they are miraculous.
These days things are only official when they are facebook official (said in a somewhat sarcastic tone). In all seriousness, I do plan on announcing my pregnancy on facebook because I am so happy and excited and I want to share that with my friends and acquaintances. In the time between when I got worried about the possibility of infertility and my BFP, I started to dread facebook announcements. I was happy for others but my heart broke for myself. It seemed like everyone else got pregnant so easily. Most of them probably did. But if someone had taken awhile, or needed treatment, it would have been comforting for me to know. It wouldn’t have felt like everyone but me gets pregnant at the drop of a hat.
Now that it’s almost time for my own facebook announcement, I wonder whether to acknowledge our struggle or not. Here’s my thought process:
- If I mention infertility, others who are dealing with the same thing will know it’s not so easy for everyone.
- However, it may “taint” the announcement by mentioning something that was very difficult when the focus should be on something amazing.
- If I do mention infertility, how do I do it? “After a struggle, I’m thrilled to announce . . . “, “We weren’t sure it was going to happen, especially on our own, but it did.”, “It wasn’t easy getting here, but I’m so happy to say . . . “
I want to acknowledge and honor my experience, but I also want to focus on the positive. I think J would favor not mentioning it. He’s surprisingly open in conversation, but I think he might feel that it would take away from the joy of the announcement (of course I could just ask him, but I haven’t). What do you think?
The pregnancy is getting more real and I am starting to feel more secure. I don’t want to become overconfident because I know things can happen at any point in a pregnancy, but I am starting to get quite excited. I also get nervous at times because I know it will be a massive change and I love my sleep. Excitement primarily wins out though and I have started to take further steps forward.
On Friday after work, I went to the mall to buy a birthday present for my cousin’s oldest daughter. She turns 9, which blows my mind. As I was at the mall, I decided to scope out some maternity clothes. I could probably make due with my stretchy pants and tummy sleeves, but I also figured that I’d definitely need maternity clothes soon anyway. So I walked into Thyme Maternity and asked if it was the right time to start looking. They encouraged me to try some pieces and said that their clothes are designed to last all three trimesters. They had a faux bump for me to try on as well, so I was able to see how they look now and how they will look toward the end of my pregnancy. I bought a pair of jeans, a pair of black dress pants (petite, so no hemming – yay!!), a cotton top, a short-sleeved cowl neck sweater, and a cardigan. I also bought two pairs of leggings from Old Navy’s minimal maternity section.
On Saturday, a friend and I went to the Bump, Baby, & Kid show. It was a trade show where various maternity, baby, and young children’s services and businesses set up tables with brochures and products. They offered deals, information, and opportunities for great prizes. I wasn’t sure how comfortable I’d feel since I’ve been resistant to buying baby things so far (I almost bought a sleeper at Costco last weekend but chickened out). It was fun though! I amassed lots of, hopefully, useful information and I bought a some cute gender neutral onesies and sleepers.
Today really drove the excitement of this pregnancy home and I could not stop grinning. I had my second prenatal appointment. I expected it to be uneventful – just checking my weight and blood pressure, etc. But then my doctor pulled out the doppler. She said that 10 weeks is kind of hit and miss in terms of finding a heartbeat with the doppler, but she would try. It took awhile and I got worried that she wouldn’t find one. I knew that didn’t mean there was a problem, but I would worry. However, she finally found the heartbeat and it is a healthy 170 beats per minute. It took me a few seconds to really take in the significance of the womp, womp, womp. It was truly amazing. I started to tear up as I drove back to work and felt so elated. I also felt so proud to be Jujube’s mom. Unfortunately, J wasn’t at my appointment because we thought it would be a very perfunctory one. I know he was disappointed that he missed out on hearing the heartbeat, but hopefully he’ll come to the next one and get to experience the wonder of it too.
I know I shouldn’t complain because Canada’s mat leave is WAY better than the US’, but right now I am wishing it was an extra 9 months. I am finding it so hard to be productive at work. I am tired and nauseous, so it’s hard to really focus on my work. And it just doesn’t feel like the important part of my life right now. I am still doing a good job for my clients, but I feel like it is taking me way longer and it’s hard to push myself. Also, all the little (and not so little) annoyances at work are now magnified, so I kind of dread going in every day. I am definitely working for the weekends at this point and already counting down to mat leave!