Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Forgetting how to count to nine and other side effects of a third pregnancy.

A conversation.  End of March 2011:

"Golly I'm exhausted."
"Well, my love, that's not surprising, you've been working all day, you've got three children under four and you're seven months pregnant."
"No I'm not. I'm about five, maybe six."
"Erm, I don't want to disagree with the pregnant woman, but you're having a baby at the end of May. It's now the end of March...."
Only it's now the beginning of May.  I am (or will be tomorrow) 37 weeks pregnant.  Officially in the zone, and completely in denial.

This pregnancy has been utterly different from my previous two.  I loved being pregnant both times before.  I felt so special. I felt as though I was, first time, the only person who had ever had a baby; and second time, the only person who had ever had twins.  I was probably incredibly dull to be with, because I suspect I thought, and dreamed and spoke about nothing other than the miracle(s) that were growing inside me.  I cherished every movement, I analysed every scan, test or illegible comment scrawled in my notes, I fretted and worried, and ate well.  I planned and prepared.  I was pregnant.

And now? Well, now I'm pregnant. But I keep forgetting.

A small list of things I have forgotten in the last thirty seven weeks:

How to count to nine.
That climbing ladders is not recommended when eight months pregnant.
That I can't fit through that space.
Or that one.
Oh, no, that one's not big enough either.
That having a baby car seat, crib and baby clothes in the attic is not the same as having them downstairs, washed and ready.
That chocolate is not a food group.
To get a MAT B1 and fill in the form for the maternity allowance.
That they have yet to design a pair of maternity jeans that a) stay up and b) look good.
That you have to pack your hospital bag, and not wait for the pregnancy fairies to do it for you.
That you are supposed to read your notes.
That maybe going to a hen night 350 miles away the weekend before my due date is not entirely wise. Even if the bride is a medic.
That there is a reason I am tired, emotional and irrational.

A smaller list of things that, despite the above, I have not forgotten:

In somewhere between three and five weeks' time I will have another baby.
It will probably hurt.
It will, once more, change my life forever.
I will never be pregnant again.

And it is the last that I must keep reminding myself of.  This is it.  And as I sit here, typing away, my tummy visibly rolling about like a sailor recently returned to shore, I must remember how privileged I am to feel like this.  To feel the indescribable sensation of someone else's hiccoughs, deep inside.  To watch as a tiny foot pushes against me, so fast that you wonder if you imagined it.  To have L, and S, and A, dolls shoved up their t-shirts, put their cold, cold hands on my bump because they want to feel their brother.

I have hardly any time left to be pregnant.  I need to remember to cherish it.

I am going to write that on the to do list.


  1. I think, actually, chocolate IS a food group.

  2. chocolate so IS a food group.

  3. Oh, well, in that case, I can hold my head high at the midwife tomorrow...

  4. Yes chocolate is a food group! And apparently a bit of dark chocolate each day can reduce the risk of pre-eclampsia. I think. I know I ate a lot of it while pregnant. I remember that feeling of thinking I could fit through a gap and then crashing my large tummy into a wall or a chair. Reading this almost made me want to be pregnant again but I don't really. Three pregnancies is definitely enough. Hope the next few weeks go well for you x

  5. Hi Plan b.
    I came knocking as I know you are due soon and wanted to see how you were. Tired! I have no understanding of having 3 babies but I know towards the end of my pregnancy all I did was bake and the jobs I had planned to do well, they are not chocolate brownies now are they?

  6. I remember it so well. You are right, you need to cherish it. I miss those little kicks and nudges from inside. Thinking of you xxxx

  7. do take the time to savour and to cherish this pregnancy - and in a few weeks and months do the same in the middle of the night when feeding times creeps upon you... enjoy every moment of it and doe at chocolate as emily is right - it's for the good of your health! keep well

  8. It's not often I read pregnancy posts and feel as if I've been transported back 15 years. The tummy rolling around like a sailor - that made me smile.

  9. goodness you've just made me remember I haven't asked for my MATB1 either, or packed a bag, or in fact most of your list. It must be a 3rd pregnancy thing. Also I'm so glad I visited to learn that info on dark chocolate - I am craving so much of it so that makes me feel a whole lot better. Best of luck with baby 4. I have 2 under 3 and I'm stressing so I think you must be a bit amazing.

  10. Emily - do you think it works with the kids' easter eggs?

    DC - baking! Now there's a good idea... Instead we're moving out for a week while the builders take a wall out of our kitchen... Hey ho!

    Pants - thank you! Will keep you posted!

    Ever-hopeful Mummy - you're absolutely right and I will try. Actually it's one I'm aware of already as with twins you don't really get the chance to enjoy the cuddly feedy moments in teh same way - with one on each breast you feel more like a milking machine, and you're not cuddling them anyway, as they're precariously balanced on cushions normally.... So I'm definitely looking forward to that this time!

    Trish - thank you! He's doing it again now! Must enjoy the blogging!

    Mother Porridge - thank you! But I most certainly am not... although I am becoming more so as since yesterday I have someone helping me three days a week. Can't believe how much difference spending an hour sitting on the sofa this afternoon has made to my general well being! Very good luck to you too!

  11. You're making me broody. That is all.
    Oh and good luck :-) x

  12. Ah yes. Yes. Yes. Do enjoy. I'm missing it already.

  13. Oh, you do make me miss being pregnant! You're making me feel somewhat broody. One thing I would say is that I wouldn't worry too much about not having your hospital bag packed. I was caught slightly unawares with Hamish and didn't have anything packed. It was fine. There is nothing that cannot be bought easily and quickly by your husband (or a friend)and brought to you. And good luck, enjoy the pregnancy time you have left!

  14. Chocolate is definitely a food group!

    And I hope you manage to find time to cherish these last few weeks

  15. Just popping by to see whether there's any news... thinking of you x

  16. Sorry Pants, no news yet. Just not blogging much as have had to decamp to Edinburgh for the week while the builders knock down walls (it is, after all, traditional to do major building work while heavily pregnant...)

    Muddling - I love all the chocolatey support I'm getting! Thanks!Not sure about the cherishing but have certainly now been hit by the knackered stick so am trying at least to rest...

    Fiona - thanks for the reassurance. Once we are home and builders done, bags can come down and be packed... Cross fingers I last that long!

    Mwa - well you made me jealous with Charlie, so consider the tables turned!

    Sandy - sorry! And thanks!

  17. Oh I kept forgetting my size and getting wedged in gaps too. Now I forget that I don't have a bump anymore. I miss mine already and it has only been two weeks. Mind you I think that has more to do with the fact that now I have nothing to wear!


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