I decided when we finally got pregnant, and it seems to be stuck this time, that I would share my experiences. I have found that although there are so many pregnant women out there, and there have been a lot of pregnant women in the past, and although there is a lot of information on the internet, we still don’t truly know what is “normal”, and every pregnancy is different.
We finally made it to the 12 week mark! Our pregnancy has not been without stress, as I imagine many aren’t. This is an IVF pregnancy so we feel like we’ve spent most of the time waiting. You wait to start the injections, then you wait to find out when to release the trigger, you have egg collection and the 5 days of waiting to see if any of the eggs take, then you have a transfer and have the dreaded 2 week wait to see if you’re pregnant. You find out at 4 weeks you’re pregnant, and then try to contain the news for the next 8 weeks before you can share it. Meanwhile, I have been studying my masters degree and working full-time shift work, overtime and trying to balance friends and family who seem to just get whatever might be left over until the semester is over.
My first trimester “symptoms” have been… Not what I expected. From the moment I got pregnant, everyone told me “what until you get morning sickness”, and I read on a forum of all these mums to be getting raging morning sickness, so I assumed maybe things weren’t going as well as I thought they were. After all, my Dad said Mum had morning sickness with her pregnancies! I did however have the sore chest, constipation, and mild cramping stretching sensations, although, the breast tenderness and constipation is also a symptom of the medication you take during IVF, so I had a hard time figuring out what was what. I had tried to compare with my previous pregnancy, but it ended in miscarriage at 7-8 weeks so I don’t really know what I can truly take from that experience. At about 6 or 7 weeks I thought the morning sickness had finally kicked in, but I think it was some kind of viral thing, I was on the couch for 3 days taking pain killers that weren’t helping, with a raging headache and nasty waves of nausea, until I finally had a vomit and it all went away. Then back to “normal”, the occasional food aversions where I had what I could only describe as a sense of not wanting to eat anything, from about 8am until around 12 – 1pm. Not nausea, but I definitely didn’t feel like eating during this time. Since about week 8 I’ve been waking in the night around 3am and unable to get back to sleep for hours, sometimes just in time to get a few hours sleep before I have to get out of bed again. Not to mention setting my alarm, and actually getting up the first time. I am NOT a morning person, I set 5 alarms, I never wake up early, and here I am this morning, I set 5 alarms and up on the first one wide awake at 7:45. Craziness! And, least but not least. I am starting to feel the beginning of a bump, it feels significant to me, but not that noticeable to others and not so obvious in the mirror, but something I thought would be weeks away yet.
I guess the point I’m making in this post, is there is no “pregnancy template”. There is no “normal”, and from what I have read, women can have different experiences from one pregnancy to another. I will make a first trimester post where I talk about the ups and downs we have experienced (including the 12 week scan we have scheduled in 3 days), but I even experienced spotting, which was the first sign of my miscarriage last year, and everything is still fine. Who would have thought about how common it is, once you mention it to other women you find out about how they had similar experiences and everything continued and turned out to be ok. We are all unique, and react to the hormone surges in different ways, but the end results is what we’re here for!