So you’ve just found out you’re pregnant. You may have been trying for months, for years or may have been successful first time. Or, you may have accidentally conceived. However you got here, I’m just here to share my experience of what I went through during my first trimester as a first time expectant mummy. You may or may not experience these things and when I talk about the midwife and hospital appointments this is regarding UK care, I’m not sure how exactly it differs across the world.
My first signs of possibly being pregnant, other than a missed period, were a sense of nausea in the evenings. It was strange,I would be really tired and lying in bed ready to sleep and a wave of nausea would hit me like a strong wave and disappear as quickly as it came. Another sign I had was that I needed to pee a whole lot more than normal and I pee regularly anyway so I knew something was up. It is only after reading a few books that I’ve learnt this is super common and is actually your hormones stimulating your kidneys to expand and produce more urine.
THE BIGGEST AND MOST EXCITING SECRET
Once you find out you will probably want to shout it from the rooftops and you’re right to want to, the feeling of telling your friends and family that you’re pregnant is like no other. Everyone shows such joy and happiness for you, it’s lovely. It is recommended to not tell anyone until after your 12 week scan. Liam and I wanted to tell our family sooner so we went for a private 9 week scan at Window To The Womb. This made us feel a lot more comfortable that there was definitely a baby in there and news to tell. It also meant we could tell them with a photo and we even paid a little extra for a video of the scan and our baby wriggling about in there. I think a general rule to go by when deciding whether or not to tell people is, would you tell that person if the worst happened and you were no longer pregnant? If the answer to that is yes then there is no harm in telling them your exciting news (in my opinion).
WHO TO TELL AND WHEN
My biggest advise to telling people is to make a list of people to tell that need to know before any news hits social media or spreads through word of mouth. Liam and I wrote a list of family members and friends that we were going to tell and in which order and then ticked them off as we had spread the news. We told our parents before anyone else.
TIME TO RING MY DOCTOR
So your pregnancy test says you’re pregnant and now it’s probably time to book a doctors appointment, right? Well, I rung mine and the grumpy receptionist said that I don’t come to them, I need to go online, sign up as being pregnant and my local health centre would call me to book me in. As a first time expectant mum I had no idea but my happy buzz was definitely killed by this receptionist.
A week after registering online and 2 days before I was due to turn six weeks pregnant a midwife from the local health centre rung me asking me to come in the next day to essentially register myself as being pregnant and then booked me in for my 12 week hospital scan as well. Kaboom, it’s all getting a bit real now. I say to ,shelf, “it’s all getting a bit real now” on a regular basis. I actually don’t think it will be properly “real” until my baby is in my arms though.
FIRST MIDWIFE APPOINTMENT
My first midwife appointment was the longest doctors appointment I have ever had. Normally they kick you out after 2-3 minutes with a prescription for something or other but this was like a family history interview. Liam and I were both asked everything about our family health history, and our own. I was taken outside to be weighed and asked if I felt safe around Liam. I laughed and she sternly responded, but are you in safe hands? I answered, “of course”!
I then to my horror also had you blood pressure and bloods taken. I have a serious case of white coat syndrome and everything to do with doctors and hospitals terrifies me (at 37 weeks in I am slowly getting better).
SIX WEEKS IN
Six weeks of being pregnant doesn’t seem like a lot, especially when if you don’t count your period you may have on,y technically been pregnant for about 4 weeks but 6 weeks on the dot my morning sickness arrived and didn’t leave for a bloody long time!!
The hardest thing about feeling the worst you’ve ever felt before the 12 week scan is that it is the loneliest time you will experience whilst being pregnant. You can’t tell anyone or explain why you’re feeling so awful. I was bed ridden with sickness for a lot of my early pregnancy and just had to push through when I went out for work. It was an awful time that I’m pleased has gone. I remember spending hours watching YouTube videos and reading books and blog posts about how to stop feeling sick and then ringing my mum in floods of tears that I couldn’t stop feeling CRAP. Just know, that it will stop soon(ish).
BLOAT VS SHOWING
Am I showing signs of a baby belly or a food belly or is it just bloat? I didn’t show for a really long time (which actually didn’t make me happy-more on that in my second trimester blog post) but I felt uncomfortably bloated at times. If you do start showing or like me are a model that has a size that their clients think they are it can be an even tougher secret to hide. If it’s summer, wear floaty dresses, if it’s winter, wear a baby jumper and make sure you have a spare hair tie for the jeans hair tie trick (if you don’t know it, it’s in my Bump highlights on my Instagram page @megantaylorlondon
Hooray, it’s finally the day you’ve been waiting for, your possibly first scan and chance to see your baby. I’m so pleased I had an early 9 week scan because it allowed me to just enjoy my 12 week scan knowing there was a baby in there. I hadn’t started showing at all at 12 weeks so it was sometimes hard to believe I was having a baby. At your 12 week scan they want to check measurements of your baby which will give you a clearer due date estimate. They also check a measurement in the back of the neck to work out the probability of chances of down syndrome and a few other potential syndromes as such. My baby was such a mover, wriggling all over the belly that they couldn’t measure the neck so sent me off to jiggle about, walk around for half an hour and eat something sugary. I came back and they still couldn’t tie the baby down so I was booked for a further scan a few days later. They have to do this test before I think 13/14 weeks so there was a time pressure on this. At the next scan they just about managed to pin the baby down for a measurement, then sent me on to have my bloods taken which is standard procedure. What I didn’t know at the time was that they had sent my bloods off for private testing to do a DNA test on my bloods to take strains of the baby’s bloods to work out if it had any problems. I am so pleased I wasn’t told until my results came back as good as they could be otherwise I would have spent weeks until my midwife appointment worrying about the results.
I feel like that was way more than I was expecting to write, but I hope it can help you in some way with a sense of reassurance and to know what’s to expect. How was your first trimester if you have already been through it? If you’re pregnant now, when are you due?