Growing a tiny human is exhausting!
12 precious weeks.
It feels like I’ve been pregnant for years…and yet at the same time it still feels like only yesterday we got that positive pregnancy test. Most people who don’t know me and are reading this (if that’s anyone apart from me!), will probably think I’m just starting my pregnancy, having only just started my blog. In fact, I’m currently 29 weeks pregnant and taking this chance to remember the journey I’ve come along. I’m trying to catch up before my baby arrives.
Before falling pregnant I had heard terrible things about the first trimester, being sick all the time, being exhausted and feeling horrible! However, I was incredibly lucky in my first trimester. I didn’t have many symptoms yet and if I’m honest I didn’t even really feel pregnant! None of it felt real. The worst of my symptoms was the never ending tiredness, I felt exhausted all the time. Sometimes I would get in from work, nap until Mr Mitchell woke me for dinner, and then go back to sleep! Luckily, this didn’t last the whole time, but this was by far what got me the most.
Other than that, I was very lucky with sickness etc. compared to some people I know. I was constantly hungry though and if I kept my stomach from being empty, I was fine and if I didn’t I was sick. I kept biscuits on my bedside table and in my pocket at work, to snack on and ginger ale really helped with the nausea when I did feel it. The only other stand out symptom was I had a migraine due to hormonal changes for about a week… now that did suck! I was very sick because of the migraine and not being able to take effective medication due to the pregnancy.
Little changes to be made.
We decided to keep our pregnancy a secret to start with. Not even telling close family or friends. We were very excited, yet sceptical and knew the first 12 weeks was a danger zone. I visited the doctors to confirm my pregnancy and talk about some medication that I’m on. I then filled in a self-referral form to await a call from the midwife to arrange my booking in appointment (this usually takes place around 8 weeks pregnant). Other than that, it was just little lifestyle changes to start with. I swapped my Pregnacare Vitabiotics Conception for the Original ones, which continued to provide the recommend daily amount of folic acid for the first trimester. I also had a look on the NHS website, as there are certain foods to avoid during pregnancy like soft cheeses (see link at the bottom of this post). One of the hardest changes for me, wasn’t the no alcohol, it was cutting down on caffeine! I swapped my tea for decaf but had to ditch my beloved Coca Cola! Well, drastically reduce the amount I drank, saving the odd can as a treat.
There’s a heartbeat!
The first scan the NHS offers isn’t until around 12 weeks pregnant, the end of the first trimester, so we decided to book a private scan to confirm the pregnancy and put our minds at rest. We found a private clinic (BabyBond at Ultra Sound Direct) not too far from us and booked an early scan in, for around 7 weeks (costing around £89.00). While we were in the waiting room, before the scan, I was the most nervous I had ever felt. I was shaking and close to tears. I was dreading hearing them tell me there was no heart beat or no baby at all. It all felt far too good to be true. The clinic was lovely and myself and Mr Mitchell were the only people in the waiting room. I was so thankful for this, I don’t think I could have faced my first scan being my NHS one with a waiting room full of people. My anxiety was so high and we were able to have a cup of tea and calm down a bit before going in.
When we went into the room I lay down and shut my eyes, I was too scared to look at the screen. “Congratulations” the lady said, “there’s the heartbeat”. I opened my eyes and burst into tears, a little blob, with a clear flicker of a heartbeat. I was amazed, I was pregnant and that was our little blob. I will honestly never forget hearing those words and seeing that little flickering blob, it’s engraved on my heart forever. The lady told us it was a single viable pregnancy, everything looked exactly how it should for gestation and we got an estimated due date. ‘Viable, exactly how it should be’, Thank goodness… I can now breath and unclench my hands!
The scan was the best thing we could have done, it put our minds and rest and allowed us to begin to enjoy our pregnancy. We knew we weren’t out of the woods yet, but our Pea was viable. We decided now we could tell close family and friends our news, waiting until after the first trimester for everyone else.
The rest of the first trimester seemed to drag, just waiting for those 12 weeks to be up seemed a lifetime. I had my booking in appointment with my midwife at 10 weeks, a bit late due to moving, and everything was how it should be. I was classed as a very low risk pregnancy, which again helped with my anxiety. Work continued to be challenging, I was hungry and tired all the time (trying to hide my snacks from the children!) and it was difficult trying to keep my little secret. I told a colleague I worked very closely with, this helped a lot as I had someone to talk to. But mostly I was enjoying my first trimester, thinking about everything that was to come.
Tiny Fingers and Tiny Toes.
We finally made it to our 12-week scan! I was once again very nervous before going in. I’m not sure I’ve ever really got over that. We were stunned when we saw our Pea, neither of us had any idea how much change would have happened, since our little flickering blob. The scan showed a fully formed tiny baby, with ten tiny fingers and ten tiny toes! We could see our Pea moving around, not that I could feel anything. It was so strange, yet so amazing. I couldn’t get over the fact that was inside me, living, growing. The pictures were a lovely touch, so we left a donation. At the scan we were given my due date, the 9th of December 2018. Just in time to join us for Christmas.
The only thing that was left to do in my first trimester, was to have the whooping cough vaccine. Simple you may think, well I think not. I am a terrible needle phobic! So, I did not enjoy this at all. I felt it going in and my arm was achy for the next day or so. But I did it, and baby was now protected from whooping cough, which can be nasty.
Once we knew everything was ok and we were safely into the second trimester, it was time to tell people!
My next blog post will be about how we announced our pregnancy…
Please check out my Instagram: mummymitchell18
Click for NHS foods to avoid in pregnancy.