Into the light

Happy 2017!

I keep thinking about starting a new blog post but have been in hibernation the past while, unsure of what to say. I think it’s maybe analysis paralysis because there are almost too many things. So – an update as I emerge from my hibernation into the light. (Well, more of a fog around London.)

Happy (quiet) new year!

We spent last night not in a state of partying but in a state of semi-hibernation as seems to have become my default since stopping work on 16 December. In my defence, I am in the end stages of gestating an actual human and it seems to be more and more unlikely that I’ll ever get up off the sofa during the day… but I think secretly I quite enjoyed not having to schlep out for New Year. 

I’ve always thought New Year was a bit of an anticlimax / weirdly arbitrary date to celebrate. Fortunately, T (and Dog) feels the same so the past few years we haven’t really done much. The last couple of years we went round to the neighbours which is the ultimate no effort party. (It’s so nice not to worry about getting home in the wee hours of the morning!) And this time we went one step further which was to stay in, eat leftover comfort food (home made bolognese sauce from the previous day on a baked potato with cheese – amazing, plus discounted christmas pudding – we really know how to live!) and watching a new series on Sky (The Young Pope – weird) and enjoying the free fireworks display from our window. Fortunately Dog is not the type to get upset at fireworks, although holding him up to view them when he was clearly uninterested was possibly a step too far!

I think you’re meant to have some sort of reflection on the past year and goals for the next year but I’m not really into all that. I try not to predicate what my next year will look like too much, as I think happiness is the main thing rather than any specific tasks or achievements. 

I will say – as I think silently to myself, most days – I am damned lucky. And not just because of B (the tiny human wriggling his way around inside me – I still can’t get over the idea there’s an actual person inside me – so weird) but because of T, who I love more than anyone, and Dog, who I love about a millimetre less than T. It’s easy to say now that B is almost cooked, but I like to think I could see how lucky I am and feel happy even if B wasn’t on the way.

 

Pregnancy update: 37 weeks – TERM!! EEK!

So today I’m 37+4 weeks pregnant, which is utterly mind blowing. I just reread my entry from 20 weeks and it’s really weird to think how everything has changed. Our doc said as of 37 weeks, the baby is considered “term” so could come at any time. What the…???!

I have a huge bump. It’s covered in stretch marks (weirdly, more on one side) and I affectionately call them tiger stripes. I can’t say I love them, but considering I never thought I’d have a baby, the tiger stripes and the destruction of my once moderately perky boobs is a small price to pay. 

My latest bumpie… taken in a changing room! We have no full length mirrors in our flat! This was at 36 weeks.


B (baby) keeps wriggling about. Occasionally he’ll stop and I’ll get a bit worried but a prod and he moves again. I am wondering if he will come early or late. Like, I always assumed he’d be late but what with the gestational diabetes and his alleged large size, there’s a chance it could be early. I got referred to the diabetic doctor and she was really nice. She said because I’m keeping the GD under control with diet, she’d let me go to 40+6 before discussing induction (in line with NICE guidelines). We had a slight worry last week as they said I had slightly more amniotic fluid than the normal range, but I had a follow up scan this week and it was fine.

Generally I feel fine health wise although I’m definitely feeling more tired and less mobile. The 8 flights of stairs to/from our apartment is a joy! I tend to stop every second flight and pretend it’s for Dog’s benefit (I give him a treat if he waits) but really I’m just knackered. Also in the past week it’s become really hard to sleep because every position results in back/shoulder pain. Fortunately I’m off work so I don’t have to do anything with my awake time.

Our NCT group has a few of us due around the same time. I’m the third (out of seven) in terms of due dates but there are only a few days between us, so we’re all wondering when the first one’s going to happen. I do feel it’s nice in a way to have a group of people to chat with about pregnancy who are all in the same boat. We have a Whatsapp group and it’s quite active. Although there is one girl on there who I find kind of irritating (who keeps angling for an invitation round our place as she lives the closest… I keep ignoring it). I suppose you can’t get on with everyone! She’s not nasty or anything but just really babyish. Probably me being a grumpy “geriatric mother”! It does mean there’s a group of people who can discuss buggies and baby clothes and things that are boring to everyone else, so it serves a purpose.

We had a group photo before Christmas. The most pregnant of us were 36 weeks and I think the least pregnant are about 31-32 weeks. We were all very smiley!


 

I love Christmas!

We had an understated but nice Christmas. Just as I’d hoped really. We went round to my parents’ place and my mum cooked – we’ve hosted both sets of parents the last couple of years, but it reminded me how nice my mum’s christmas is. (Let’s just say she’s much more domesticated than I am so Christmas dinner is not delayed two hours whilst I try and get the potatoes to roast!) Hilariously my dad managed to spill potato gratin all over my lap, thereby terminating the run of my one and only pregnancy Christmas dress before I’d managed to get a nice picture! Luckily I’d already thought ahead that I might want to lounge in jeans for the later hours, so I had a change of clothes!

We took Dog round and so there was some funny slapstick routines with us opening and closing doors so that Dog and my parents’ cat would remain separated. Don’t feel sorry for the cat. Seriously he’s a grumpy b*stard. When Dog was little, he thought he and Cat would be friends – Cat hissed and scratched him in the face. Dog’s first experience of “Not everyone thinks you are the cutest thing on earth”! Second time, he scratched Dog’s ass as he chased him upstairs. So yeah, it was funny. Dog was very well behaved though, which was nice as he had his own Christmas dinner, painstakingly chopped up by me. (I swear the baby will have no impact on the babying I already do to Dog.)

Also brilliantly, my sibling who lives overseas decided to come for Christmas at short notice. So it was awesome to spend Christmas together. A proper family Christmas! We went to see T’s parents a few days after Christmas so we actually ended up having two Christmases. It was great.

We had lots of nice presents too. Quite a few were baby related. I kind of always thought I’d mind, but I really don’t. It’s nice to have little presents for B. I realised that we needed actual newborn clothes instead of 0-3 months for the first week or two, so it was nice that my sister got us some cute onesies. The great news is, she’s still pregnant! They had their first scan (7 weeks) and baby looked healthy. Their second is in a few days which will be around 9 weeks. I’m feeling really hopeful for her and trying not to ask too many questions. 

We got a Polaroid camera which should be fun for visitors so they can take a picture with B, and also it prints pictures that are about the right size for his baby book. And as a present to ourselves we bought a proper “posh” camera which takes much better pictures than the iPhone! T is under orders to take plenty of pictures at the birth – even if we later censor them!

T got me some photo books with lots of pictures of us in them. It was really sweet and not what I had expected at all. Especially as I’d been having a go at him for spending so much time on the computer! It turns out he was making me 2 volumes of photo books. It’s really nice, with lots of pictures of us at Disney and of Dog! He said that they should help during labour (apparently looking at photos of loved ones / happy things helps release oxytocin) so I’ve packed Volume 1 in the hospital bag.

 

Christmas season in pictures…

Carnaby Street – my favourite place to go (Christmas) shopping. Another favourite, Liberty, is right by Carnaby Street. It’s a great place to shop and go out so if you’re ever in London, I recommend checking it out rather than the usual tourist spots which are usually insanely busy!


Giant christmas tree in Covent Garden. You can see the buildings for scale!

We went to see Motown: The Musical. It was great, apart from The Tallest Man In The Universe who ended up sitting right in front of me! Argh!

Christmas TOMS. You can never have too many TOMS. These are supposed to glow in the dark, but I haven’t managed to see how that works – it’s probably not dark enough, or something. Anyway, TOMS. I love TOMS.


Last work do. I had a work away day at a posh hotel. It was very Christmassy! The best thing is, my best bud at work was the one organising it and she made sure I had a GIANT room… Very luxurious! Technically it was the disabled room so I had remote controlled lights and a bathroom the size of our apartment, but hey, I wasn’t going to complain… I had a nice bath but my belly wouldn’t even fit under the water!


T, Dog and I went for a little Christmas meal at the pub. It was great! We were supposed to go with our friends but unfortunately the one who was having chemo wasn’t feeling well enough. We went to see them on Christmas Eve so we delivered all the presents then. We are hopeful she’s getting better.


And some more food… I went for my traditional pre-Christmas meal with my BFF. She loves French food so we went to Balthazar. It was tasty!

London by night.

My Christmas present from my folks! Made me laugh.

My Christmas present from my friend with the American fiancรฉ – Cheetos. And the large bag of gifts I got for my nephew / niece with my hand to scale!

We went to the cinema on a movie marathon (because we still have the unlimited cards and we figured we should get it all done before baby arrives). We saw Passengers, which was great, very silly. And Collateral Beauty which was a bit weird. And we had some Tex Mex street food in between. Healthy! (Probably not!)

And Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without the red cups! I’ll miss them when they’ve gone!

 

Ready or not…

So the focus of the past few days was to get ourselves “hospital ready” in case I went into labour early. (Here’s hoping it doesn’t happen!) Yesterday we spent ages getting the car seat installed. It was quite easy but then we couldn’t figure out how to remove it! Hilariously the instruction books are actually in a pocket under the seat, on the base. So you could only access them if you took the seat out… Anyway we finally managed to remove it. Phew! It is compatible with our buggy, which also got delivered… Crazy to think that all being well, there will be a little person in it in a few weeks.


We got a bunch of Amazon deliveries too so we are pretty much all ready in terms of equipment, apart from the cot. T is still working on a major DIY project (a built in wardrobe) so we will clear some space once that is usable. I guess if B comes early, we can have him in bed with us for a day whilst the cot is delivered! 

I packed my hospital bag which has all my stuff and everything for B. It was quite weird doing it, thinking of all the stuff I’d need and that he would need. T will have a bag too. We managed to keep it quite small. It feels so strange to think we might be coming home with a little human any time over the next month or so. We looked at each other yesterday and said, WTF?! There should be some sort of licence!!

Anyway, pending B’s arrival I’m due to go back to work on Tuesday for a week or so. In theory I’m working until 39 weeks. This was based on my pre pregnancy assumption that babies come late as everyone I knew who had first babies had them late… Also I needed to maximise my leave because I don’t have much. 

I guess we are “nesting” in our own way. As in, a rather physically chaotic but mentally prepared way! Hilariously after all my ranting and raving about “hippy dippy ****” I seem to have come full circle. I no longer want an elective Caesarian – I want to have a natural childbirth with minimal intervention if possible. And I’ve even read and semi-digested the hypnobirthing book. I’m still not convinced you can actually self-hypnotise but I’m more talking it as having a calm, positive approach to childbirth. T has been reading it too! I have the accompanying tracks downloaded to my iPhone so it remains to be seen if the weirdly toned voice helps!

I keep looking at Dog and thinking, everything is going to change for you, little man. We are trying to make him feel very secure and I keep thinking that I don’t want him to get upset. But he’s a very chilled out Dog so hopefully he will adjust and be buddies with B. I bought him a bandana that says Big Brother! I just love him so much and want him to be happy and not feel neglected. I suppose it’s like when you have an older child! Fortunately he’s probably easier to please than a child – a few treats and he’s anyone’s! I’m really enjoying these days of lying on the sofa with him. The calm before the storm!

The last couple of days I’ve felt something different – like B has maybe moved lower or something. So maybe the first few days of 2017 will be more active than we anticipated! 

Watch this space!

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20 comments

  1. lyart

    I’ll just wish you good luck for the birthing now, in case it is happening soon. ๐Ÿ™‚ It must be absolutely awesome to come to the point, when everything you have wished for, is actually about to happen.

    Like

  2. circumstance227

    Nara, only you could write a “hibernation” post with this much activity packed into it! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll be thinking about you in the coming weeks, wondering and wishing the best. (And I am jealous of your Cheetos.)

    Like

    • Nara

      Haha true. I guess not hibernation as such, but blog hibernation? It does feel like I’ve done nothing for the past week other than lie on the sofa! (The Cheetos are long gone!)

      Like

  3. EmilyMaine

    Ooooooo so awesome to read an update from you! You are so close now. Home stretch ๐Ÿ™‚ Nice that the GD is diet controlled and they aren’t pushing you to induce. GREAT start really. Love that your sis is still going along well too. Yay!

    Sounds like it was the perfect last Christmas pre-baby. Can’t wait for you to have your little one here and in your arms. Wishing you calmness and serenity for your birth. You can do this! Xx

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    • Nara

      Thanks! Yes it seems odd to think it could happen any time! I’m pleased I’ve managed to control the GD. Weirdly it seems to have eased off a bit this last week. Maybe because I’ve had more sleep.

      Yes it’s great about my sister. Even though it seems we have been going through this process forever, if it happens then it means they’ll both be born in the same school year, which is nuts!

      Thanks so much for the support! Xx

      Like

  4. tidleone

    Sounds like you had a fab Christmas and are ready for B’s arrival. I feel the sme when it comes to hibernation and cuddling up with the dog. Everyone goes back to work tomorrow but that’s when my mat leave officially starts and I’m thinking that I’ll only be leaving the sofa to scavenge for food or wee.

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    • Nara

      Scavenge for wee? ๐Ÿ˜‚

      Yeah, officially my mat leave doesn’t start till the 11th – but I’ll be working from home so I am not expecting it to be too taxing! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Hope you are feeling good! Can’t imagine having two baking away! X

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Dubliner in Deutschland

    Yea I always find New Year’s Eve an anticlimax too! There’s so much pressure to do something for it. The last few years we have done more laid back things, like last year we were in Ireland and went out for dinner with my sister and her boyfriend to a local place which was nice. This year we just stayed in, watched TV, drank some wine and watched fireworks outside our house. I’m glad to read that all is going well with your sister’s pregnancy too. The photo book idea from T. is lovely! Best of luck over the next few weeks, so exciting you’ll get to meet baby soon! It must be surreal.

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    • Nara

      Aww thank you. It sounds like your New Years was very similar to ours. Did you have good fireworks? I like fireworks! Felt pleased we had a good view of our district’s offerings!

      My sis seems to be okay although I can imagine she’s probably going a bit crazy right now. (She’s always been a bit crazy- haha.) I’m really hoping for the best for her.

      Been thinking of you and hope that this is your year. Xx

      Like

  6. thegreatpuddingclubhunt

    You have the cutest bump out of your NCT group!!!! ๐Ÿ˜Š

    โค๏ธ the Christmas Toms!!!

    Ahhhh Christmas in London. I wish I could be there it looks so lovely and festive!!!!

    I’m going to wish you all the luck because you’re going to be meeting B so soon…you never know when!!! Xx

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    • Nara

      Haha, I didn’t think you’d be able to tell which one was me? ๐Ÿ˜‚
      I’m totally addicted to TOMS. I even have a new pair I got in the sales that I haven’t opened yet! For post birth. I think it’s because they fit whatever shape you are!
      Is Christmas in the US less festive? I bet they are pretty good, no? I want to go to Disney one year for Christmas!!
      I will let you know if / when I do meet B. Feels odd to think it’s only a matter of time!! Hope you are having an amazing time with Aviana! Xx

      Liked by 1 person

      • thegreatpuddingclubhunt

        By the power of deduction, elimination and my super analytical abilities it is too easy ๐Ÿ˜
        If we were in New York or another big city I’d say yes the US is super festive, but in this sprawling suburban ‘city’ I live in at the mo it really doesn’t feel quite so festive. Perhaps I’m used to being spoilt in London growing up as a kid there! I am sure Disney would be amazing for Christmas! I said to Chris the other day how I can’t wait to take Aviana to Disney!! He rolled his eyes ๐Ÿ˜‚

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      • Nara

        Haaaaa. You are too clever! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ Hope you like my jumper!

        You HAVE to take Aviana to Disney! We are already planning B’s first Christmas there! Ha. We will definitely end up taking him in his first year!

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    • Nara

      Thanks! It feels like it’s been really slow for us! I suppose because we’ve been going through the whole process for pretty much a year. So it’s a long gestation!
      Hope your holiday season was great! It’s my favourite time of the year!

      Like

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