I'll do an update for each week so far since I last posted!
24 weeks - baby is viable.
We celebrated by going baby shopping! We bought a few things for bathing the baby - a bath seat/rest etc. We also bought the snowman book and little toy. Daddy read the bump the story book and cried at the snowman melting (as he did when he was a child too at the film!).
People have been commenting that my bump is small/isn't growing. And of course this has got me worried.
After people saying I was small last week, the day I took this picture I felt much bigger. Even the school kids noticed and one went to touch my bump. I also went to the midwife and measured perfectly at 25.5cm at 25+1. If I continue to grow at this rate then I will be predicted an 8lb baby as I'm just above the 50th Centile. I am so happy that I am normal sized. I was beginning to get worried.
We also went to a private antenatal class that I'd won in a competition. It was brilliant! There were two other couples and one couple are our friends who are 10 days ahead of us. It was a really good day and Mr Waiting wore the 'empathy belly' for a couple of hours! I definitely feel more prepared and knowledgeable now. Seeing a model cervix at 10cm was worrying though! I also started to think more about labour and panic a bit more about that. As you can see my anxiety is not any better.
This week I had my counselling appointment and assessment. It was really hard explaining why I was so anxious and upset about things to do with my pregnancy. I realised that I do a lot of visualising of horrible things, things about giving birth early, about the baby dying etc, and even about Mr Waiting being involved in some kind of horrific accident. I follow these images through with thoughts about what I would do in that situation and even go as far as planning funerals in my head. It is very distressing. As a result, the counsellor is going to start working with me immediately and I have had another appointment this week too, which I will write about in a moment.
We broke up for Christmas from school this week. I have had a bout of sickness that Mr Waiting also had and it wore me out for a day or two, typically when I was trying to do some Christmas shopping. Breaking up was exciting and stressful. I felt and still feel like I have so much to do at home as well as at work (indeed I have brought home a big bag for life full of marking and I have no idea when I'm going to get all of it done!).
I didn't take a bump picture this week but here is a picture of our special bauble for the tree which we decorated last week:
We wanted to mark Stanley or Lucy's first Christmas in the world this year, even if they are still not born. We have also bought some Christmas presents for him/her. We bought him three books and I bought him a little natural hair brush because I'm convinced he'll be born with hair if he's anything like mummy and daddy for hairiness! And I've wrapped it addressed for daddy to open because I've also bought daddy a brush that's the same but massive - it's a back brush. Daddy has really bad eczema and gets itchy so a back brush is very useful. He does worry that Stanley/Lucy will inherit his eczema and I know he will be quite upset if he/she does develop, although clearly it's not his fault.
27 weeks - THIRD TRIMESTER!
Unbelievable that I am in third trimester. I cannot believe it. Honestly, me, third trimester. Stanley/Lucy is very very active quite often, to the point I do not worry about him/her as much. Now my worries have been focussed on he/she not crying when he/she's born. I want to hear that cry so much, to know he's ok. I have also had stronger urges to know if he is a he or a she! I think partly because if anything happens I will want to know whether it's a Stanley or a Lucy.
The further on I get the more my worries change. Things trigger my thoughts. Just today as we drove past the cemetery I spotted (again) the baby graves in one corner. My thoughts spiraled from there. What if Stanley doesn't cry and is dead when he is? What if I have to plan the funeral? I thought of the songs I'd choose, the colour of the coffin, where I'd want it to be. It's awful. I don't just do this with Stanley, I've also done it for Mr Waiting if he's late back from somewhere. I end up torturing myself with these thoughts and anxieties. Hopefully the counselling is going to help as today he gave me exercises to work through some of my issues and thoughts - there's a whole section in the booklet about "What if..." questions!
I am also worried that my worries won't stop after he is here. Will I miss out on the best time of his and my life because my worries control so much of me? I feel like I am not enjoying pregnancy as I should be. There are many moments that I feel really happy and really excited but typically I do not focus on these.
Here's a 3rd Trimester bump picture:
My belly button has gone flat now and is starting to pop out. I feel so much movement - I can tell he is getting bigger and running out of room. I feel it really high up now too, just under my ribs. I love feeling him move even though it is a little freaky! I still can't get used to it. I'm looking forward to seeing my sister later as she hasn't seen me since 22/23 weeks I think so she is bound to think I am much bigger and I'm hoping that the baby kicks for her. My dad still hasn't felt him move! I hope he does over Christmas.
I often see things poking out and my tummy jumping about. I also have felt a full rotation! I have no idea which way is which though, as in what's head and what's feet! I am looking forward to the midwife being able to tell which way he/she is laying at the next appointment in early January. I have 3 weekly appointments now, and soon it'll be one every two weeks. This only means one thing - that I'm getting closer to the end! I have 91 days until my due date today. Oh my goodness, this is really happening!
I'm really looking forward to Christmas this year. It was so hard last year, being infertile, not knowing about the future, reliving mum's last moments and first anniversary of her death. This year I am more focussed on Christmas, on things that are going to happen in the future and I am looking forward, despite my anxieties. On Friday everyone is doing a Christmas walk for mum's favourite charity (the Holisitic Care centre that she went to for treatments when she was poorly). We will decorate a tree for mum.
Next year, Christmas will be so different - we will have Stanley/Lucy and it will be their first Christmas. It will be fantastic, I am sure of it. They are going to be so spoiled by everyone. I can't wait.
Daddy has been busy working on the nursery since we have broken up from school. This is what the room looked like before:
And this is the first stage: clearing it out!
This is the room after the yellow paint (Lemon Ice) was done yesterday:
It actually looks brighter than it is. It's much better taking a photo in proper daylight, so I will try to do that this week. Daddy has finished the skirting boards, frames and window sill today. He has also taken up the old carpet and we have ordered a new one which will be fitted on the 5th January - the same day the furniture is getting delivered. I am so excited about this. It will start taking shape and we can start to put things together and accessorise the room.
I'm sure there will be more pictures to follow soon. I'll be sure to do an update in January some time.