Pregnancy Update: My First Trimester

Monday, 14 September 2015

As a first-time, rather clueless mum-to-be I have been doing a lot of pregnancy-related research over the past few weeks. Books, internet forums, blogs, vlogs, mobile Apps...you name it, I've delved into it. It's been so important to me, not only to check that I'm doing things the way they should be done with regards to everything from sleep to my diet to exercise, but also so that I can compare my progress to that of other mums with a similar due date.

Do you want to know my main discovery? There is no 'normal' pregnancy.

There are expectant mothers that seem to flourish in pregnancy, right from day one. They manage to carry on with their normal lives, as if nothing much has changed, keeping up with outings, classes, exercise regimes and even managing to run marathons! Others report that they feel better than ever, and happily gloat about that elusive pregnancy 'glow' that some of us have been desperately waiting to miraculously appear...

Yup, you guessed it, I've been on the other side of the pregnancy camp entirely. I would even go so far as to say that my first three months has been nothing short of a long and exhausting struggle. Nevertheless, this definitely hasn't detracted from the excitement that's accompanied every little development, every time I've heard that rapid little heartbeat and seen our baby grow week by week in each scan...Yes, it's been tough, but it's also been the best three months of my life.

Here's a little summary of all the ups and downs. For those of you with a delicate constitution, or those who aren't a fan of TMI, I suggest you click away now!

How did I discover I was pregnant?


Towards the end of our honeymoon, I started to feel different. I can't put a finger on exactly what it was, but one night, sitting at dinner in Florence, I just kind of knew that I was pregnant. Lots of mums-to-be report a similar feeling - be it intuition or the change in hormones - sometimes you just know. Then my boobs started to tingle, and then really ache, and for me that confirmed it. Mr Sunshine needed a little more convincing however. When we arrived back in London for the final leg of our honeymoon, we rushed out to buy a pregnancy test at the first opportunity. I opted for a super-accurate digital one, just to be sure, and was a little surprised when "Pregnant 3+ weeks" popped up on the screen! Mr Sunshine's face was a picture when I showed him. Shock and then complete happiness! I was so relieved that he felt the same way as me about the news. Obviously this had all happened much more quickly than we had anticipated, but it wasn't unplanned. We had discussed all of the connotations in detail, like every sensible couple should do before making such a huge, life changing decision as this, and we already knew that the time was right.

So how far along am I, exactly?!


I am 12 weeks today! This week marks the end of my first trimester, or the first three months of pregnancy. Before you all go and do the math and start pointing any fingers, the doctors actually calculate this date from the date that you started your last period rather than the actual date of conception, so I did get pregnant after we got married. Just! According to our calculations is was probably the very first time we tried. We were just lucky in that respect I guess!

What am I looking like these days?


Pretty much the same, to most people. To me however, I feel like I look completely different! I think when you're used to your body looking and feeling a certain way, you notice even the tiniest change in the way your tummy sits, and how clothes fit you. Take a look at these photos and see what you think...



I am really embracing all of the changes that are happening to my body. They are a daily comfort to me that the little human inside of me is really there and growing at a rapid rate! I can't wait for the next month, when all of this is going to escalate, and my tummy will 'pop' out under my rib cage, and I will finally look properly pregnant to the outside world!

Why has it been so tough?


The number one reason is that I haven't had the safest or smoothest of pregnancies so far. I had a bleed at 5 weeks, and again at 9 weeks, the latter of which the doctors termed a 'threatened miscarriage'. When I heard those words they shot through me like a lightning bolt, and I will never forget them as long as I live. I was put on bed rest for a week and prescribed progesterone tablets to see me through to the end of the trimester. It was a really scary time, during which I convinced myself that we were definitely going to lose the baby. I berated myself for all of the things that I could have done wrong and read far too many scare stories on the internet. Towards the end of the week however, with the help of Mr S, I pulled myself together and started to think far more positively. After all, many many women (approximately 15-20%!!!) have a miscarriage in the first trimester, through no fault of their own, and the only thing you can do if there is threat of this happening is to rest and stay positive. What's more, we had seen our baby wriggling on the screen in a scan twice that week (one of the real perks of the excellent private healthcare in Qatar), and heard their little heart beat, signalling that everything was still going as it should be. I picked myself up out of my gloom and ever since then, things seem to have got a lot better. As we come to the end of the first trimester the risk of miscarriage reduces significantly, and we can start to rest easy at last!

Any other symptoms?


Oh, loads. Between weeks 5 and 10, my morning sickness lasted practically all day, and sometimes went on into the night. Particular low points included the time I threw up incessantly between 2am and 5am, and still dragged myself into work the next day, and the time my kind and caring husband brought me breakfast in bed and I promptly threw it back up all over him. See, I told you this wasn't a glamorous pregnancy!! Now that I've entered the 12 week mark, the physical sickness is lots better, but some of the other symptoms still prevail. A bit of nausea and lack of appetite. Occasional headaches. Dizziness. Achey, swollen boobs. Extreme fatigue and the need to nap ALL THE TIME. Luckily, Mr Sunshine is the best nurse/house husband in the world, and his patience and care has been an absolute life saver while I've been feeling so terrible. I'm not sure many husbands would let you sleep all evening while they go to the supermarket (to stock up on all the strange items you've requested), quietly make you dinner (for the umpteenth time that week) and hastily tidy up all the mess that you've made throughout the day around you. Thanks Mr S, you're the best!

So, um, are there any good things about being pregnant?


Sorry to save this nice bit for last but I think it's important to end on a positive note. There are a million and one absolutely amazingly wonderful things about being pregnant!

I suddenly feel like there is something bigger than just me, or Mr Sunshine and me to think about. We are already becoming less selfish in our lives.

I feel incredibly lucky and happy that we have been given this opportunity, and there isn't a night that I have fallen asleep, or a morning that I've woken up without a huge smile on my face. The things that used to really get me down no longer trouble me for long - they are so insignificant compared to what we are about to do.

I have a new-found appreciation for all of those other mothers and mothers-to-be out there. Friends, family, strangers I pass on the street...there is so much that they go through every day that is completely taken for granted. I think they all deserve their own medal.

I am really positive and excited about the future. Yes, it's going to be new and daunting and difficult. But it's also going to be the best thing that we will ever do. I can't wait to get started!

34 comments:

  1. Congratulations!

    Not great to hear it's been a tricky journey so far but sounds like you're in capable hands with Mr S! xx

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    1. Thanks. He's been an absolute life saver...

      Polly xx

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  2. Congrats Polly, that such great news and I'm glad you've not got as much morning sickness xx

    Mehreen A | wrapyourlipsaroundthis.com

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  3. Congratulations again lovely, it's really interesting to hear how you found out. I was actually wondering if you were pregnant on your wedding day. Sorry that you've had such a hard time of it, I hope it all gets easier soon.
    Lots of love,
    Angie

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    1. Hehe, everyone was wondering that! Luckily I'm feeling soo much better now, thank you lovely.

      Polly xx

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  4. I've just discovered you blog, congratulations! I'm looking forward to following your pregnancy with you!

    Gold Dust
    x

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    1. Thanks Kate! Look forward to sharing the journey with you!

      Polly xx

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  5. Hey Polly!

    Im so happy for you. It is indeed a really wonderful journey to embark on. Congratulations!

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  6. Congratulations! It sounds like you've had a bit of a rollercoaster ride. Fingers crossed your second trimester is smoother. They say that the symptoms ease a lot more.

    I'm currently in my third trimester (six weeks to go!) and definitely suffered with extreme fatigue in the first three months, so I can only imagine how hard it must be coupled with sickness. I was still tired in the second, but not as much. Now I'm nearing the end my back hurts and I'm tired and breathless, but more so than anything I'm super excited!!

    Have you found any good pregnancy/baby blogs? I've struggled but really enjoy The Uphill (especially the monthly updates) and The Parent Crap (for a good laugh!).

    Anyway, once again congrats! x

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    1. Congratulations!!!! How exciting. It's so good to hear other people's stories. I hope the little one comes soon and relieves you of all those symptoms...although I'm sure you will still have the tiredness ;-) I will send you a message with some pregnancy blogs I've enjoyed. Thanks for the recommendations, I will check them out!

      Polly xx

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  7. I am actually bursting with excitement for you guys! How amazing and what a fabulous wedding gift - well, if you take away the morning sickness etc. I can't wait to see how you progress and hear all of your little pregnancy tales. Fingers crossed things are a bit smoother from now on! Congrats. xxx

    Kirsty - Effortlessly Excessive

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    1. YAY!!! Thank you sooo much Kirsty!!! Things are much much better thank goodness.

      Polly xx

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  8. Such incredible news Polly and so lovely to share your journey with you, although you are scaring me a bit, haha! Pregnant the first time you tried - fate or what! Lots of love, Andrea xxx

    Andrea's Passions

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    1. Eek, I know right. Everything they taught you in school was right. BE SAFE!!! Haha.

      Polly xx

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  9. Thanks for sharing this with us, warts and all! The media often presents a glorified version of what being pregnant is like and it's nice to hear the full story. I hope that you start to feel a lot better


    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

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    1. Thanks Suze. I know, it's so misleading! I hope that if just one mum-to-be can relate to what I'm going through or realise she's not alone in feeling this way then it's a job well done!!

      Polly xx

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  10. Congratulations lovely, how incredible to find out on honeymoon! Looking forward to seeing how the blog changes into luxury parent travel and dining! I know well how that has been a traumatic few weeks, so glad you are out the other side of it, look after yourself and your little bean xx

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    1. Thank you lovely lady. Haha, luxury travel and dining might have to be put on hold for a while in favour of learning how to put on nappies and napping...but I'm sure it will return in due course! It's going to be an interesting time.

      Polly xx

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  11. I've been secretly waiting for this piece of news ;) YAY! Congratulations. So happy for you two :)

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    1. Haha, was it that obvious?! :-) Thank you!!

      Polly xx

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  12. Huge congratulations really pleased for both of you. I am not sure anyone has an easy pregnancy they might put on a front. I had visions of blooming and feeling ful of radiant beams. I had the worst morning sickness from 6-20 weeks. The most challenging as you say is being at work feeling awful and no one knowing. Sharing in posts about what to expect is really important writing though a blog is a challenge whilst pregnant but I am adamant that I can keep it going. It's important to share the reality. Lucy x

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    1. Ohh you poor thing Lucy, I really feel for you! I know, work has been dire. Luckily everyone knows now so I don't have to hide it when I need to go and puke!! I'm really impressed that you've managed to keep it up, mine has trailed off somewhat. However, I'm sure it will be even more difficult once the baby comes! Thanks, pleased you think I'm doing the right thing.

      Polly xx

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  13. After following your engagement, wedding, and honeymoon, I am so excited to read along during your next journey! I can't even express how excited I am for you! I am so sorry that you haven't been feeling well. I hope the rest of your pregnancy goes much smoother. Sending you love from Hawaii!

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    1. You are sooo sweet Carolann, thank you! Big love returned from Doha.

      Polly xx

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  14. Awww Polly, sorry to hear it's been a bit of a rough first trimester. Such happy news though and I loved your little positive end-note! Can't wait to see yours and Mr Sunshine's baby journey!

    C x | Lux Life

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    1. Hehe, can't wait to share it with you. Thanks Catherine :-)

      Polly xx

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  15. You're so sweet sharing this all with us Polly and I'm so pleased to hear you're starting to feel a bit better. Must have been a turbulent few weeks for you with the scares and I'm so pleased that you're managing to stay so positive despite a hard few weeks ��

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    1. It's not been the funnest few weeks ever, but it's worth it! Thanks for your lovely comment :-)

      Polly xx

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  16. Hi, I have come across your blog now. My husband and I moved to Doha a month ago and a week ago I discovered I am pregnant :) I should be around 5+5. As I know nothing about clinics here, would you mind sharing your experience with doctors/clinics you have been to throughout your pregnancy? I am waiting a few weeks to get the first scan done but I still have to book an appointment!
    Thank you so much if you have the time to reply to me. You have the prettiest girl ever, congratulations!

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