Written In Blood (and Tears!)

One person's climb to (hopefully!) the world of the published novelist…the trials and tribulations of parenthood..and whatever else pops into my head at any given moment!

Preparation and Panic

Well, here we are again. It’s almost Day One of NaNoWriMo, 2012.

I’m pumped. Terrified, but pumped. I think I might puke.  Last year, I made it to a not too terrible 15,000 words before the flu got me and I couldn’t lift my head up, let alone write. Being pregnant and sick didn’t help matters much either. This year, I’m aiming to beat that word count.  I might not hit the magic 50k (i am nothing if not a realist), but I’ll be happy to get further than I did last year.

Up until a few days ago, all I had to go on was a character name, Lucy, and a setting (blood covered snow in the woods). That was it. These two things kept coming up in dreams, random thoughts, or even on TV.  The name Lucy seemed to be everywhere, and when it started to snow in my hometown, I took it as a sign. I still don’t have too much more, but have been listening to all my favourite music looking for cues (right now, that’s the Rock of Ages soundtrack. Do not judge. It works for me!) and it’s surprising how much is coming up. I am asking my muse lots of questions about my character, and although she hasn’t been too cooperative just yet, I know she’ll turn up eventually, screaming at me to “Just write it down, you idiot! We’ll edit in December!!” My muse can be a bit temperamental.

So..4 days and counting. Are you freaking out yet??

Much love,

Jacqui

xxx

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21 weeks and 1 day

Dominic @ 19 weeks

Hi again everyone!

Well here we are on Boxing Day! I’ve just about recovered from the excitement of yesterday, and hope that you’ve all had a wonderful Christmas with your friends and families.

I have some very exciting news!! I’m having a BOY! Finally, after 15 years of parenting girls I’ll get to do something different!! Hubby is of course absolutely thrilled, as am I. The kids…well, we’ve had some mixed reactions to the news. My youngest is so excited she can barely contain herself, my oldest is also pretty happy about it as is my 9 year old tomboy who is thrilled she’ll actually get to do boy stuff.

We had our morphology scan at 19 weeks 5 days. As well as the very exciting news that he has “boy bits” we’re happy to announce that everything looks perfect. He’s growing beautifully and everything is in the right place. His brain, heart and spine all look great and there are no issues. Thank God for that.

I’m getting HUGE. Honestly. I feel like the back end of a bus right now, and only going to get bigger. Oh well, such is life. I’m super excited about my changing body and I’m not in the least bit stressed over the stretch marks or the extra cellulite that seems to have just appeared on my ass for no apparent reason. I don’t care. I’m growing a new life inside me, and that is pretty phenominal.

Dominic (aka Squishy) is moving around a lot now. He seems to enjoy using my bladder as a trampoline. How strange. The girls never did that,or at least, I don’t remember them doing so. In any case as much as having a foot in my bladder hurts, it’s a lovely reminder that he is doing well and is happy and secure in there.

We’ve done all the shopping for the big stuff. I got rid of everything after Miss 6 grew out of it all simply because I never even imagined having another baby. Oops. So, we now have the cot, bassinet, pram and car seat, one bedding set and a few other bits and pieces. Now that we know he’s definitely a boy, we bought him one new outfit which is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen!  So now I get to write up the huge list of other stuff that he needs, and will start collecting it week by week so that we’re totally prepared for when he comes along, which by the way will be by C-Section on May 2nd. I don’t particularly want to have yet another section, but thanks to a nice T-shaped scar on my uterus caused by Miss 9’s emergency c-section, I don’t have a choice. *Sigh* Still, at least knowing exactly when he’s coming makes it a lot easier to organise the girls. No late night frantic calls to my mother, no dreaded wait for an overdue labour, nothing. I guess it does have its advantages!

Physically I’m doing GREAT. No morning sickness and a lot more energy, although I do tire a little more easily than when I’m in a non-pregnant state.  The only real complaints I have right now are the headaches, the sudden blood pressure crashes, killer heartburn and the ligament pain. At least they’re not constant. That would drive me insane.

Emotionally, I’m still a little fragile. I cry at everything. Seriously! I’ve always been one to cry easily but this is ridiculous! Work stuff has made me totally crazy, but that’s a whole different story. I’m in a bit of a panic worrying about how the hell we’re going to make this work financially when I’ve been dropped down to part time at work, but hey, we’ve been through worse, and we will succeed. More time with family will make me a much more pleasant person anyway!

That’s it for this week!

Hormonally Yours,

Jacqui

xox

Giving myself permission to dream…and following the dragonfly…

Today, as I sat in my office on the second last day in this role, surrounded by two years of  joyful, sad, terrifying, worrying, and fabulous memories, I started to daydream. Anyone who knows me well knows that I do this quite often. Unfortunately though, my daydreams are more often than not rooted in fantasy and are totally unrealistic. You know the one. You win lotto, move to the Bahamas and live forever in paradise? Yeah. Those ones. 

Through my work, I’ve become quite accustomed to using thought stopping, a rather powerful tool used to help people to reframe their negative thoughts into more positive ones. I guess I’m now in the habit of using thought stopping on myself. However, this is usually not done the way it’s supposed to be done, and is rather more like, “you stupid cow. You will NOT win lotto and move to the Bahamas EVER in this lifetime so STOP being so damn dramatic!” Yeah, I told you I didn’t do it properly.

But today, today was different. I have admittedly, over the last couple of weeks, been so hurt by events at work that I’ve been blinded to the opportunities this could open up for me. I’ve been so immersed in my own pain, anger, and I suppose grief, to really understand and see the doors opening all around me. I’ve only been able to fixate on the slamming shut of the windows.

Today, I allowed myself to daydream, not of lotto wins and paradise, but of becoming my own boss, my own captain. I have allowed myself to finally see the potential that Ido have within, the talents I have, and the ways in which I can use them to my own advantage.

Today, I allowed myself to see myself doing the things I love every day, because Ican. I saw myself unrestrained by workplace rules and regulations, not having to answer to anyone but myself. I saw myself balancing work with play and parenthood and doing it brilliantly.

Today, I remembered that I once had goals and dreams that have been beaten out of me, both literally and figuratively over the last 15 years. I remembered how it feels to be excited by something, something that I truly love.

Today, I realised that instead of mourning the fact that I’ll only be earning a part time wage after christmas, I should be celebrating it. Two whole extra days every week with the most important people in my life are far more important than a pay check.

I adore making jewellery, and have been told on more than one occasion that I’m really very good at it. So from today, that is my goal. As much as I love writing, and I really do, I’m like a three year old in a lot of ways and writing doesn’t give me the instant gratification that I crave, and that finishing that beautiful piece of jewellery does. I’ll keep writing because I love it, but it’s now taking a backseat to all the other things I have going on in my life.

I’m doing all the goal setting stuff that I do with my clients. I’m making lists and charts and tearing my hair out thinking of all the things I need to make a good go of my very own business. Will it succeed? God, I hope so. The thing is, it won’t do anything unless I make it happen. I can’t sit back and hope that some fairy Godmother’s going to wave her wand at me and say, “here you go, dear. Everything is done for you.” That’s a scary thought. The idea of succeeding or failing all on my own back is terrifying, yet strangely exhilirating. To be honest, I can’t wait to get started. I just don’t quite know where to start. But I’m a smart woman, I’ll figure it out 😉

My blog here will continue as always, and I’ll add more and more stuff as time goes on. Maybe I’ll even add a jewellery page. Who knows? For now, I’m giving myself permission to dream, and as an old and trusted friend once said to me, “follow the dragonfly.”

With love and hope,

J

xxx

 

 

 

 

18 weeks 1 day

Here we are at week 18!!! Squishy has decided that moving around is a good thing, which of course is a fantastic thing for me too. Naturally though, this has only served to increase my anxiety some days when I don’t feel him/her move!! The joys of parenthood, hey?

Physically, I’m feeling a lot better. Morning sickness has subsided dramatically, and only hits occasionally, like this morning when I was brushing my teeth. Odd. The dreaded heartburn has started up again, although it’s bearable at this point. I’m not looking forward to the third trimester when I’m going to have to sleep practically sitting up because the heartburn’s so bad. So for now the occasional bout is manageable.

Emotionally I’m an absolute wreck. I’m having issues at work, which are probably not the most appropriate things to discuss here, but let’s just say it sucks and I hate it. The added stress of having to go part time after Christmas, when we’re already struggling a bit financially isn’t doing my stress levels any good. Oh well. Such is life, and all will be OK in the end…..I hope!!

I am booked in for my morphology scan on the 16th December. By that time, I’ll be a couple of days shy of 20 weeks so we’re hoping that we’ll find out whether we’re team pink or blue. Please send out lots of blue vibes!!!!

At my last obstetrician and midwife appointment, they took blood to screen for Down’s Syndrome, and said that if they came back with a high chance, they’d call me in straight away. No such phone call has been made, so I’m hopeful that all is OK there. We’ll know more after the scan.

That’s it for this week, I’ll update after the scan and will hopefully have photos uploaded to show you 🙂

Hormonally Yours,

Jacqui

xx

15 weeks and 2 days…or…mixed emotions

Today was a bit of a milestone, as I attended my first antenatal appointment with the obstetrician and midwives at RDH. Wow. What a couple of hours THAT was!

First of all, they lost my GP referral. It had mysteriously disappeared into a paperwork void, and to get it back, the poor receptionist had to call my doctor to get them to fax it through, who apparently didn’t make this task any easier by giving her the “but i have so much else to do!” speech. Eventually, it did show up and i was allowed to have my appointment as planned.

Enter my lovely midwife, or one of them anyway. In 15 years of having kids at RDH, she was the FIRST one to ask me if I’d had trouble breastfeeding and if so, would I like to see their lactation consultant. Duh, silly question! YES! Maybe, just maybe, this last baby will be the one who’ll take to breastfeeding so I don’t have to go through the “why does she HATE me so much!!!” rollercoaster. Yay!

The usual checks were done; height (152 cm. Apparently I’ve grown two centimetres when i wasn’t looking!) weight (please don’t ask, although I’m losing weight again. This could be a good thing!). Blood pressure (relatively normal but I can’t remember what the figure was right now. I’m blaming placenta brain). Do I drink? Nope. Smoke? Ohhhhh that dreaded question. I answered truthfully and am now waiting for a call from the Quit people who will apparently help me to stop smoking altogether. I’m doing well and have managed to cut down significantly, but would like to stop. My midwife’s exact words were, “It’s ok. You have time.” God bless her. I do love a midwife who wants to help, and not nag. nagging makes me want to punch them in the nose.

Next up, the obstetrician, a lovely lady who I took an immediate liking to. I’ll be seeing her again, hopefully!
She ran through all my previous notes and such things, wrote out referrals for more blood tests, the screening test for Down’s Syndrome (both of which I had today), and my morphology scan. We had a quick chat about my previous births and was told “we wouldn’t allow you to have anything BUT a c-section.” Apparently the emergency c-section incision that I had when Emily was born extended so far, well.. south (to put it nicely) that there’s no way I’ll be able to deliver naturally again. I’m having a few mixed feelings about this.

1. Prepared: I knew that this was going to happen. I didn’t know exactly how badly Emily’s section had been messed up but according to my obstetrician who looked after my last pregnancy, it was bad enough for him to put “natural delivery’ and ‘bleed to death’ in the same sentence, hence the elective c-section that I had with Natalie. I’d just assumed it would be the case with this baby too. I was right. Today, I found out exactly how bad it was. Oh. My. God.  It’s no wonder I was on the table for as long as I was. WOW.  I’d like to avoid that this time, please.

2. Disappointed: Despite being totally mentally prepared for the c-section conversation, I’m still feeling a little disappointed. Not for me so much, I’ve done the natural delivery thing twice already, but for hubby. He has never witnessed such an amazing event as a natural birth. I sort of feel like I’ve robbed him of that experience.

3. Relieved: I don’t like pain. I don’t like labour pain at ALL. Saying that, I delivered Chelsea without drugs or anything. Still hurt like a son of a bitch though.

4. Fearful: I know there’s nothing to be scared of. This will be my 3rd section and I know exactly what’s in store. I know about the spinal anaesthetic, the drips, the drapes, the ridiculous amount of people in the room.  I know how cold the anaesthetist and surgeon’s hands will be and how soothing I find that. I know how weird it feels to suddenly lose sensation from your chest downwards.  I know exactly when to ask my anaesthetist for drugs to stop me throwing up. I know how odd it is to lie on that table, staring up at those HUGE lights thinking, “any minute now and I’ll hear her cry.” I know the tugging and pulling sensations I’ll feel.  I know how cold I’ll be after surgery and how much I’ll want that “straight out of the warmer” blanket that I love so much. I don’t know why I’m so scared.

5. Sad: I also know that I won’t be able to hold the baby immediately after birth. I know that skin to skin contact with her/him will be practically impossible without a LOT of help. Remind me to ask my doctor about that…maybe there’s a way. I also know that breastfeeding on an operating table is not always the best idea.

6. Optimistic: One MAJOR upside to this is that I’ll know EXACTLY when the baby is going to make his/her arrival into the world. This means I can go grocery shopping with the family and make sure they have everything they need. I can be 100% ready to go on the day of the surgery without worrying that I’ve forgotten to pack something essential like underwear. Don’t laugh, it happens! I also won’t have to call my Mom at some insane time of the night to come and pick up the girls. I guess a planned c-section isn’t all THAT bad. I’d rather deliver naturally and preferably without drugs. But, if I could bleed to death, what’s the point? At the end of it, I’ll have a lovely baby either way; that’s what’s important.

I have to see my midwife again in about 5 weeks. Problem is, when I went to make the appointment, the poor receptionsist (again) said that she couldn’t book it yet because they don’t have their calendars up yet for December. I’m convinced the girl is going to have to go on stress leave soon! I assured her that it was OK, and that I’d call after I’d had my scan to make the second appointment. She was undoubtedly relieved!

I’m also really tired of saying he/she all the damn time. We’ve nicknamed the baby Squishy so from now on that’s what I’ll use until such times as we find out the gender. I have my morphology scan booked for the 16th December, so we’ll find out then IF Squishy’s in the right position and wants to tell us!

My arm hurts from today’s blood tests, but other than that, I feel fine. I’m over the cold that really knocked me down last week, and am feeling FAR more human. I’m still sooo tired, but am hoping that the energy levels will pick back up soon. I’m not as nauseated although I did have a moment this morning when I felt a little woozy and sick. It’s passed now, probably because I’ve eaten. *Note to self: Do not allow yourself to get hungry!*

I’ve been feeling movement for the past week or so too. It’s tiny but it’s definitely there. Amazing. Fifteen short weeks ago there was a clump of cells growing inside me. Now Squishy is a tiny, perfect human being, no bigger than my hand. Five pregnancies and I still can’t get over how incredible this journey is.

Hormonally Yours,

Jacqui

14 weeks and 3 days…or…blurgh!

Hey all,

It’s been a couple of weeks since I posted anything for my Hormonally Yours series, and I apologise. NaNoWriMo has pretty much sucked all of my time and energy out of me.

As far as the pregnancy is concerned, I do believe all is going well. I FINALLY got an appointment with the hospital midwife clinic, but it’s not until November 15th, so I’ll have more details for you then.

Today hasn’t been a good day. Although the normal early pregnancy symptoms have pretty much disappeared (YAY for not throwing up!) my darling hubby decided to share his cold wth me. I have a fever, runny nose, headache…the lot. Oh the joy. I don’t know what it is, but being pregnant seems to make a regular cold feel like I’m dying of some rare and exotic monkey disease!  Also, my back and hips are already starting to hurt and I keep getting the most AGONISING round ligament pain in my pelvis. Freaking OUCH.

People keep staring at my tummy. I just know they’re doing that, “Is she pregnant or just getting like, really fat?” thing. Bless them for being too polite to ask! The kids are all getting super excited, which is awesome. Of course they’re all still praying for a boy. How the heck do you tell a six year old that you can’t CHOOSE which one you get? Oh well.

Checked out some baby clothes today. They really have improved on the baby boy clothes since I had the girls. It was always the way that there was aisles and aisles of girl clothes and nothing for boys. It’s good to see that they’re leveling the playing field a little nowadays. Now let’s just hope that we get to actually shop in the boys aisles for a change! OMG you wouldn’t believe how totally adorable, or “Pimp!!!” as my hubby would say, they are! Fingers crossed.

I also discovered that not only won’t I be wearing heels for the next six months, I can’t wear my beloved gladiator sandals because my freaking ankles have swollen up so much! Not a good look. Instead, I’m looking at wearing ever so cute flip flop type things. That’s ok, I suppose. I don’t mind them that much but OH how I miss my sandals. On top of that, it seems that those who design maternity pants think that we’re all 6ft tall. So, not only am I wearing flip flops for the rest of the pregnancy, it looks like I’ll be wearing bloody leggings for the next 6 months. Oh happy day.

Other than my clothing and shoes woes an the fact that I seem to be in constant pain, I am enjoying the pregnancy so far. It’s always really amazing to take a minute to think about what’s going on inside me as we speak. A new life, another one to love and adore. Pretty exciting stuff.

Until next time,

Hormonally Yours,

Jac

NaNoWriMo Journey

November 8th, 2011 – Day 8

Well it happened. I broke the 10k words mark, then decided I hated everything and went back to my plotting and planning roots. I now have a relatively solid plot outline summary, which will (hopefully) end up being my blurb at some point in the distant future. For right now though, it’s safely stored on my laptop where nobody can find it. Call me paranoid.

I now have a clearer idea of what on this earth my characters are supposed to be doing, where they’re going and what their bloody motivation is. Thank the writing Gods for that! This business of them just sorta floating about was really making me insane.

I am a MUCH happier NaNo bunny now. I won’t rewrite, what I’ve already done, that would be completely nuts.  I’m just going to continue with it as though it’s always been the way it’s supposed to be (wow did that sentence even make any sense?!?) and will go heavy on the editing come December. I’m feeling MUCH more comfortable and in my zone now.

Pantsers, I salute you. I don’t know HOW the hell you do it.

See you in a couple of days!

J

xx

 

******************************************

 

November 6th, 2011 – Day 6

Oh it’s not going well. I managed to put down over 2000 words last night, which seems like a great achievement. However, I’m only 6,345 words down, which means that as of now I’m 3,657 words behind where I should be. Admittedly, I’m starting to feel a little sorry for myself and the self-doubt has definitely started to creep in. I seem to spend hours looking through the NaNo forums instead of writing, but when I sit down to open up my word document, I freeze. Once I get started, I’m fine, it’s getting started that’s the problem.

I’m tired. I’m cranky and overly hormonal. Tonight I went into full blown meltdown mode, complete with that stupid “crying talk” that women do. You know the one. We know that we just said “everything in my life sucks” but the person we’re with is more likely to hear something totally different. This is especially true if our companion is a man. Sorry guys. It’s true. Women can understand “crying talk” much easier than you can, probably because you don’t do it. Or at least, I’ve never heard a man do it. If I’m wrong, please feel free to correct me. Just do it gently, please.

I don’t think that doing NaNo was a mistake, but I do feel that I have taken on too much already. I’m determined to finish it only because I don’t like letting myself down. At the same time though, how much damage am I doing to myself by forcing the words to come every day when I’m just not feeling it? Or, is this exactly what NaNo is all about? Stopping that inner critic talking over my shoulder? Stopping the procrastination? Probably.

I’m lucky enough to have some wonderful writer friends, both old and new, who are doing a fabulous job of waving their pompoms and kicking my butt in the nicest way possible. I don’t want to let them down either.

I’ll plod along. I’ll get 2000 words down tonight and hopefully feel better by the morning. Fingers crossed.

Happy writing all!

***********************************

November 3rd, 2011 – Day 3

Readers will know that I, insanely and blindly, decided to take part in NaNoWriMo this year. Thanks to Laura Meyer and Jodi Cleghorn’s influence, I decided to totally copy their idea and write a short (ish) journal type thing of my journey through the next 28 days or so.

Here’s a quick rundown of what I’ve learned so far, in no particular order.

  1. I type far too slowly!
  2. Pushing myself to the point of exhaustion to get that word count up may eventually cause damage to my mental health.
  3. I miss sleep.
  4. I love my story.
  5. No matter how much I love my story, I can’t seem to express it on the page the way I see it in my head.
  6. There are many ways to cope with frustration. Unfortunately, one of them is sleep. The other is food. This does not bode well for my already increasing weight.
  7. My husband can be a real slave driver. All I hear from him now is, “You need to write. Shut Facebook OFF!”
  8. I’m going to need a chiropractor in December.
  9. I have some of the best friends a person could ask for.
  10. I’m obsessed with the stupid word counter thing at the bottom of my screen.
  11. I know FAR too many ways to procrastinate.
  12. Writers are incredibly supportive and wonderful people, who will back you up no matter how crappy your day has been or how shitty your writing is.
  13. I actually LIKE not planning! Weird, I know.
  14. Having a deadline is an excellent motivator.
  15. Not editing as I go along is a surprisingly liberating thing to do. Goodbye inner critic, you bitch!
  16. My muse likes to play tricks on me. She’ll say nothing for hours, then BOOM! At midnight, she turns up. I truly hate that, but hey, at least she shows up eventually.

And, a little excerpt. It is unbelievably rough and totally unedited. Please be gentle!

Elijah stopped by Genevieve’s desk as soon as she arrived for work the next evening. She was late and already in a foul mood. The last thing she needed was his damn cheerfulness. What freaking vampire was ever that happy? Insane.

“Hey Gen!” God, how she hated being called Gen.

“Elijah. Hello. How are you?”

“Fan-fucking-tastic! Dinner last night was incredible. I had a little Australian. 1989. Nice vintage.”

“Yes, 1989 was a good year for Aussies.” Genevieve replied and despite her mood, couldn’t help grinning. Vampiric jokes just never got old.

Anyhoo….I did say a little excerpt!

I already adore Elijah, who was a total surprise to me. He just turned up as I was writing on Day 1. I do love it when characters do that.

That’s all for today.

See you all soon!

Jacqui

NaNoWriMo….all alone, and an exercise in pantsing?

Last year, I discovered this thing called National Novel Writing Month (or, NaNoWriMo as it’s known). Typical. By the time I’d found out about these 30 days and nights of “literary abandon” it was already halfway through November and I’d missed out. I swore to myself that I’d do it this year. And so I am, God help me.

This isn’t just insane…this is “i’m not going to sleep and nobody is going to eat and the house is going to go to wrack and ruin” insane. To write 50,000 words in a month…yep, definite madness. I’m now not quite so sure I can pull this off. I’m so tired all the time that all I really want to do when I finish work is sleep, not write 1666 words.

My own daughter, who is a fantastic writer, said a few months back, “Yeah mom, I’ll do that with you! It’ll be fun!” is now saying “I never said I’d do it and I’m not doing it, I don’t have time!” Hmph. She has plenty of time for facebook and playing on her phone though. I’m actually quite peeved. And feeling rather abandoned and alone. She thinks it’s hilarious. I however seem to have lost my sense of humour. Oh well, maybe next year she’ll feel more up to the challenge. Who knows? I do still love her though and have forgiven her for abandoning me in my hour of need. Sort of 🙂

Despite being dumped so unceremoniously, my biggest issue is that so far, I have absolutely NO idea of what i’ll be writing about. Awesome, 50,000 words of….what?  It’ll probably be YA type stuff, probably with at least one or two vampires thrown in for good measure. I do love my vampires, they’re so much fun to write.  I also like to read about them, so this sorta makes sense, right?  Throw in a dose of teenage rage, angst and turmoil…and there’s a book I want to read. Quite possibly one I’d like to write. Yeah yeah I know. It’s been done, I understand that. However, it hasn’t been done by me. That makes it different, or at least that’s my defence and I’m sticking to it.

Now that I have some sort of random idea, I’m onto my next dilemma: Plan or pants it? I’m usually a meticulous planner. Everything gets thought out, listed, reworked, reframed, and reorganised to within an inch of it’s life (Lightbulb moment! THAT’S why I get so damn miserable halfway through the planning stage! I must bear that in mind from now on!). For NaNo though…not one word has been put on paper, not a list, nor an outline. Big fat nothing. Could this be the way I get through it? By NOT planning so much my head wants to explode? Maybe just having a slight inkling of what I want to do will be enough. I’ve really secretly always wanted to try pantsing it to see what happens. This is the perfect opportunity.

I’ll keep you posted as I go along. Wish me luck! If you’re doing NaNo this year, let me know!

Love and Peace,

Jacqui

12 weeks, 1 day….or…”Thank God that trimester’s over!!!”

So this week marks the end of the first trimester, or so say all the websites I’ve been reading. This is incredibly good news. I have a history of miscarriage so to make it here without incident is a good thing.

I’m finally starting to feel more human. I’m not throwing up or feeling nauseous now unless I haven’t eaten all day (which i AM trying not to do) and the energy levels are slowly but surely creeping back up. I’m starting to get that little baby bump I’ve been longing to see for the last month. Yay!! Pregnancy is the only time in my life that I actually don’t mind having a tummy. It’s the LOSING the tummy again that’s the hard part! Oh well, such is life.

I’m a lot more relaxed now than I was when I last posted about the pregnancy, I’ve had a few weeks to  get used to the idea. That’s not to say I’m not still concerned about finances etc, I am, but I’m not what I’d call “freaking out” now. We only have a couple more payments to make on the baby stuff we have on lay-by, which is a good feeling, it means we’ll have ALL the big items out of the way and paid for well before my due date (6th May, in case I forgot to mention it before). Then with a bit of luck, we’ll find out whether Squishy is a boy or a girl in a few weeks, and then the shopping REALLY begins (as will the “OMG where am I going to PUT all of this stuff?”). Looking forward to it.

Oh. One more thing. I know last time, I talked about the prenatal care stuff….well unfortunately I still don’t have anything to report. I’m waiting (now rather impatiently) for our hospital to call me and say “Hey, we’ve got an appointment for you!” but so far…..not a damn thing. I’m really not surprised, and they seem to be incapable of answering the phone. I’d like an appointment soon, preferably BEFORE Squishy makes his/her entry into the world. I will hopefully have something more to tell you next time.

Until then,

Hormonally Yours,

Jacqui

9 weeks and 2 days….or…”OMG what have we done?”

This is my fifth pregnancy.

You’d think I’d have a “been there, done this” type of attitude huh? Funnily enough, I don’t. I think maybe I’m more nervous and excited this time than I was with my first. Weird? Not really, if you think about it. My  youngest is six, and this is the largest gap between babies I’ve had so far. I’m also six years older and a scary number of kilograms heavier than I was when the youngest member of the Kipfer tribe made her appearance, so naturally there are some concerns all focused around, “will the baby be OK?” That is also my paranoia speaking. I’m sure bub will be fine, the ultrasound two weeks ago said that everything looked fine, and there’s no point in working myself up over it.

Emotionally, I am exhausted. This baby, although very much wanted, was not  “planned” as such. The reality that we need a new car, lots of baby stuff (stuff we’d had but gotten rid of five years ago) and quite possibly a new house, are prospects that are somewhat scary. Scratch that. Terrifying. However, we have been through worse and will no doubt make it through this, a little worse off financially, but hey…it’s only money, right? Of course, right.

So, I’m obsessing over cash flow (or lack thereof), worried that bub won’t be “normal” and a little more than terrified of how the heck I’m going to juggle 5 kids, a husband and a full time job. Add to that the writing and the jewellery making, and I’m afraid my life is going to crash down around me like a house of cards.

Sigh.

Physically…how am I doing? Oh don’t ask. I have the chest of a Playboy bunny, the skin of a 12 year old (yes the hormones are at it again!) and the waistline of an ever increasing  and expanding blob. Yuck! No “baby bump” as yet, just a whole lot of water retention, gas and bloating. Charming. On the upside, I’m not throwing up. I also don’t feel sick 24 hours a day anymore although there are certain smells and foods that will do it to me every single time. Unfortunately for hubby, this means that he’s back to being the one handling ALL cooking (not that this is much of a change; he’s been the family chef forever) as the mere sight of raw meat sends me straight for the bathroom. That’s not to say I can’t eat it when it’s cooked. I can, and quite easily too, I might add.

That’s the other thing. I’m starving. ALL THE TIME. It never goes away. I can eat a huge meal and 20 minutes later, I’m looking for seconds. My hubby refers to this as my “hobbit stage.” I’m waiting for him to start serving me “second breakfast” every morning.

I’ve been incredibly slack in booking antenatal appointments too. This, I suspect, is simply because this is pregnancy number 5. I know what’s coming. I don’t wish to be poked and prodded, and I especially don’t want to be weighed. Ever.

That said, I do know that good antenatal care is crucial and I do intend to get it. By the time I write my next diary entry, I will have organised my appointment with the hospital antenatal team and will hopefully have something to update you with.

Fingers crossed.

Hormonally Yours,

Jacqui

xx

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