THE FIRST TRIMESTER …. where has the time gone??
Let me start by saying – this is WAY over-due. I felt I was really on a roll with writing down my notes and thoughts throughout the IVF Journey and even in the early weeks of this pregnancy…..then somewhere along the way it stopped being as easy, and I was never really sure what to write, I was not sure what I wanted to say.
The First Few Weeks….
The first few weeks (which you can read about in earlier posts) seemed so easy to answer the question “how is everything going?” or “how are you feeling?”. There were weekly updates from my OBGYN, blood tests and regular phone calls with Monaish, I knew what was going on internally. Then, when I was discharged from Monaish all those weekly updates stopped and suddenly how I was doing is met with me thinking “I have no idea…growing I assume”. I have not experienced many of the regular first trimester symptoms that remind women they are pregnant such as morning sickness or cravings. Sure, I had the extreme fatigue and some food aversions – but I still felt able to do everything! As the weeks have progressed, I have continued to feel better, never worse…I really feel blessed to not experience some of those nasty symptoms – but I feel like those symptoms are what keep women grounded (so to speak).
So the weeks have rolled on, I have to take medication 3x a day and feel mostly fine….and I keep being not sure how to answer “how is everything going”. I love being asked, I love that everyone around us cares so much to ask and be genuinely interested, I just wish I had more informative answers! The truth is – I wake up every day (and often multiple times a day) thinking “well, no bleeding or discharge that I should not be experiencing…..so I must still be pregnant”.
Now we are 12 Weeks Pregnant….
Now, sitting on a Saturday I am officially in the FINAL WEEK of the FIRST TRIMESTER. I do not know where the time has gone! Do all the months go this quickly? Week 11 saw my body turn a corner and give me a few hints that yes, I am in fact still growing a little human. I am still thankful these body cues are not morning sickness or fatigue…in fact the extreme fatigue (the mid-day slump) is nearly gone. I am feeling like my own human-self again! What has changed….
- I can no longer suck the bloating back in. The protruding tummy looks like a Thanksgiving dinner indulgence.
- There are shorts that fit a little more snug and some yoga pants that just look funny to wear now. The bloated tummy always looks a little worse by the end of the day, it is not real baby belly (more like a protruding uterus – and the side effects of progesterone 3x a day)
- The glowing skin has become real….I feel like my skin is extra shiny. I still use a regular morning and night routine but I feel like I do not need the extra “soak up the Townsville humidity sweat” makeup products now.
- Getting sports bras on and off are much more challenging – with a growing and more sensitive chest I feel like taking sports clothes on/off a second workout.
- So much sweat! It is as if my brain switches from “normal sweat mode” to “let’s produce all the knee sweat” when I am sitting in a vinyl chair for ANY appointments. This has me apologising profusely to whomever’s chair I am sitting in when I stand up and there is a slight tooshy mark. Talk about embarrassing!
- If I do not drink at-least 2L of water a day – I get very dizzy and lightheaded. I finally decided to purchase a YETI (1.3L) to be sure I always have cool, refreshing water throughout the day. Side Note: I can not drink the tap-water here…I have tried (and now I blame the hormones) where it feels like I am drinking gritty water.
As the excitement begins to roll in that we may just be through the toughest part of our pregnancy (and the most risky)….there are still a few things that weight me down (emotionally and physically) from time to time.
- Although the fatigue is lifting, I still struggle through the afternoons from time to time. Rather than feeling like a heavy, thick fog that I am trying to push my way through it presents as physical bloating (by now I have had nearly 180mg of extra progesterone in addition to what my body is producing) and that makes it feel like I can not move well
- Which leads me to the medication – this is something I have spoken about before, but I am amazed (and surprised every time) I am still on medication 3x a day. I really thought that it would all stop (or at least be minimised) once the pregnancy was sticking and strong.
- ESTROGREN FUN FACT: Estrogen helps to grow and maintain your endometrial lining and sustain a pregnancy. It also helps your placenta function, boosts blood flow to your uterus and primes your body for breastfeeding. The 6mg of estrogen a day is also a down-regulator and prevents ovulation. So your ovaries won’t interfere with the embryos you put back in.
- PROGRESTERONE FUN FACT: the gel is used to support the uterus during pregnancy and prevent potential miscarrages in women who have already experienced one/some.
- We still need to make it through the results of the Nuchal Translucency Scan & the plethora of blood test to determine the health of the baby. We are not worried, but there is always that little niggle in the back of the mind.
- Nuchal Translucency Scan (takes about 45-minutes at the hospital) is an ultrasound will measure your baby’s nuchal translucency (a fluid-filled space at the back of your baby’s neck). The results of a nuchal translucency scan may tell you if your baby has a high or low risk of a chromosomal abnormality. This is used in conjunction with the Harmony Test.
- Harmony Test (which we chose to have done due to the presence of down syndrome in my family history) is a DNA-based blood screening test for the most common chromosomal abnormalities, including Down syndrome (trisomy 21).
As we head into this final week I am starting to feel more relaxed and at-ease with pregnancy. I find myself less worried about eating the wrong thing, or exercising in a way that may hurt the growing baby. I feel more comfortable in my growing skin (even if my pants are not). I am cherishing the last few moments in this time and can’t wait to share the news (no matter what) come Friday!
Anne & Baby Wright