20 Bunless Questions

So, life’s gotten in the way of blogging in a BIG way lately. I’m not going to go into it, but it’s been a crackingly busy, boring, delightful, frustrating, wondrous, tedious, brilliant, crazy Summer here in the Bunless household.

When I saw the 20 Questions post over at Pail I was so pleased: a nice way to get my blogging brain back into action, and indulge my rampant narcissism at the same time.

OK. Let’s do this thing.

1. What was the last thing you threw in the garbage/recycling?

Cardboard ‘stuffing’ from a newly-purchased vaporiser. Little Bun came down with a belter of a cold on Saturday morning. Fever, streaming nose, red eyes, barking cough – the works. My little trooper managed to continue to sleep through, albeit very noisily – which broke my heart! The worst of it seems to be gone, but we’re left with a nasty cough – hence, the vaporiser.

2. What’s the #1 most played song on your iPod?

Well, ignoring the lullaby tracks that I played religiously during LB’s months 5 – 8 (Brahms will forever remind me of long, napless days), number one is Lippy Kids, by Elbow. A stunningly beautiful, hauntingly nostalgic track that makes me feel happy and sad all at the same time. Seriously, have a listen.

Sigh – I love that song.

3. What is your favorite quote?

I’m not sure I can pick a favourite, but one that’s close to my heart – ‘Things that were hard to bear are sweet to remember’ (Seneca) … pretty much sums up my response to a lot of things. I am a terrible nostalgist.

4. What chore do you absolutely hate doing?

Ah. Hands down this would be cleaning the high chair. This has easily surpassed every other tedious chore in my life. As LB feeds herself now, the mess ranges from mild to HOW DID TUNA GET INTO MY SHOES? Avocado and mango are the worst. Crevices YOU DESTROY ME.

5. What is your favorite form of exercise?

OK. Um. I am a bad exerciser. LB’s dairy and soy allergy meant that from three months post-partum I had to alter my diet pretty drastically. This, combined with breastfeeding, meant that I dropped under my pre-IVF weight really quickly. While great, it’s also been an excuse to ignore exercise in a big way. So I’m properly wobbly and unfit and gross. Having said that, we walk walk walk all day every day. So right now, walking with my girl is top of my list.

6. What is your favorite time of day/day of the week/month of the year?

I’ve always been a sucker for balmy summer nights. So I’m loving evenings at the moment, out in our little courtyard. The smell of cooling, wet soil – freshly watered after a long, hot day. Mr Bun barbequing our dinner, the two of us catching up over a glass of something very cold, as the sky turns pink and purple overhead.

7. What is on your bedside table?

I’m embarrassed to say, no books. This is unusual, but since having LB my bookwormy ways have fallen by the wayside. Now she’s sleeping through, I’m going to pick this up again. But, I’m afraid that currently my bedside table holds my phone, a glass of water, the baby monitor and sometimes a bit of the weekend paper that I’m still catching up on come Thursday.

8. What is your favorite body part?

Probably my mouth – because of my enormous head (!) I managed to avoid braces as a kid. I think a big, happy smile can be the most attractive thing about a person. Unless you’re Daniel Craig as James Bond, and then it’s your sweet, sweet body.

(yes, I’ve recently seen Skyfall)

9. Would you use the power of invisibility for good or evil? Elaborate.

Oh, evil. I am a snoop – definitely. I used to love riding on the top of the double decker buses around London, only so I could peer into the window of first floor flats.

10. If you could choose to stay a certain age forever, what age would it be?

My twenties were a really fun decade, particularly years living overseas and working as hard as I played. Or was it the other way around? But how can you pick a year from the past, when you have a baby who is growing into the future? I’d love to be lucky enough to answer that question when I’m very, very old.

11. What is the first thing you would do if you won the lottery?

Oh wow, I could write a NOVEL about this stuff. Seriously, when I’m having my most anxious 4am moments, very detailed lottery-based fantasies can calm me down like nothing else. So, first thing? Open a seriously amazing bottle of Champagne and start looking for a beautiful home.

12. What is your biggest pet peeve?

I am an anally retentive, obsessive perfectionist. EVERYTHING is my pet peeve. No seriously. What you’re doing right now – stop it – it’s annoying me.

13. If you could know the answer to any question, what would it be?

That’s easy – what are those winning lottery numbers? Because money can’t buy happiness, but it can sure help along the way!

There are other questions – ones about life, and death, and all that’s in between. But I’m too superstitious to muck with that stuff. Even if I could find out, I don’t know if I’d want to.

14. At what age did you become an adult?

When I left home, and moved overseas to a foreign city with no friends, no job, and no clue. I was 21. It was the best thing I ever did.

15. Recommend a book, movie, or television show in three sentences or less.

Oh goddamn you. This is my favourite thing to do, and there’s no WAY I can stick to just one medium, let alone three sentences.

OK – a book – one of my favourites with my non-Aussie friends in mind. Dirt Music. A rolling, languid, sensual dip into my country. A truly magical read, with a corker of a love story holding it together. Let me know if you like it.

16. What did you do growing up that got you into trouble?

I’m not sure about trouble as such, but gee could I talk. Probably quite obnoxiously. Definitely precociously. All home movies have the unfortunate feature of having my face thrust into almost every frame. Not a shy little flower!

17. What was the first album you bought with your own money?

It was this. On cassette. I was entranced by her hat.

18. If someone wrote a book about you, what would be the title?

I think this is the hardest question here. I’ve come back to it a few times, but I’ve got nuthin’. How about ‘Anxious and Paranoid’ … ? I’m only half kidding. Those who love me, love my neuroses as well.

19. What story do you wish your family would stop telling about you?

Thankfully, I don’t get many stories told about me at family get togethers. We’re not big on reminiscing in my family – more about anecdotes of the day … But generally a joke or two about my large head makes its way into the patter.

20. True or false: The unicorn is the greatest mythical creature. State your case.

Oh, false false false. A unicorn’s got nothing against The Woman Who Can Be It All – Fantastic wife! Perfect mother! Stellar friend! Exemplary career woman! Spiritually aligned! Physically fit! Now THAT’S a creature worthy of myth and legend.

(can you tell I’m due back to work soon?)

– – –

Well, I hope that fit the bill – I can’t wait to read everyone else’s answers. And hopefully this has been the kickstart I need to pump a few more posts out into the ether. Thank you Pail for the great inspiration!

x

The Bunless Birth Story

OK. Two things:

1 – This newborn baby thing is the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

2 – Here is my Birth Story. I am typing this with an overtired Little Bun sleeping on my chest. It’s been a bad day. She’s been crying nonstop, and I’ve been … well, trying (failing) to calm her. So, the chest it is. But anyway – the In Laws have left and I have some ‘time’ to get this down.

It’ll be a long ‘un, so the abridged version is here: I gave birth. It hurt. But we got a beautiful baby girl. The end.

OK – here goes!

– – – –

Cast your mind, dear reader, to four weeks ago.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT – 40w6d

Mr Bun and I headed into hospital for my first dose of P.rostin gel. As you may remember, this was with the aim of getting things started, ahead of Dr Spock breaking my waters and commencing the induction proper on Thursday morning.

My cervix was still so high and closed that the insertion of the gel hurt LIKE A MOTHER. We were sent home and told to come in if anything happened. I woke up the next morning with nary a niggle down below … little did I know that would be my last solid(ish) night’s sleep in – well – ever.

THURSDAY MORNING – 41w

We had been told to come in again Thursday morning, regardless of anything happening or not, so off we went, bags in tow – expecting this to be it. On examining me, Dr Spock said there’d been so little movement that she wasn’t that comfortable progressing into a fully fledged induction. I was relieved to hear this, as I was beginning to worry about forcing things too fast. So, we agreed that she’d give me a second, slightly larger dose of the P.rostin. We’d wait a full 24 hours and if there was still no change, she’d progress with the induction on Friday morning.

This second dose of P.rostin was administered with the help of N.itrous Oxide (Gas, or Gas and Air). I lay there at nine in the morning laughing my arse off while Mr Bun, Dr Spock and a midwife looked on in amusement. It was not my most sophisticated moment …

Mr Bun had already taken Thursday off work in expectation of that being our ‘induction day’, so we headed home together to wait. We even discussed going to see a film, but by the time we arrived home the P.rostin Pains had really kicked in. These were just like bad period cramps, and I had to take some heavy-duty painkillers to dull them. It was so weird having ‘cramps’ again after nine months. I swear I got a touch of PTSD-like flashbacks, in feeling like my period was about to arrive … I kept having to remind myself I was 41 weeks pregnant. A few times, Mr Bun asked if I was having contractions – but these were constant cramps that responded to painkillers. So, in a word, no.

THURSDAY NIGHT

Resigning ourselves to a full induction the next morning, and toasting our last night as a family of two, we sat down to takeaway and a DVD. As the opening credits rolled, I felt a swift and firm ‘kick’ down low in my nether regions. Almost immediately, there was a POP and my waters broke bigtime! Being the practical lass I am (ahem) I swiftly moved off the couch/rug/any stain-able soft furnshings and onto the wooden floorboards.

Me – ‘Woah! WOAH!’

Mr Bun – ‘What! What!’

Me – ‘My waters JUST BROKE!!!’

Mr Bun – … !!!

Me – ‘GET A TOWEL!’ (See? Practical)

We called the Maternity Ward and even though I was having zero contractions, they told us to come in. We piled the car up with bags and made the third trip in two days to the hospital. They examined me, confirmed my waters had broken (duh) and asked us what we wanted to do. We could hang out in the labour ward, use up one of our four allocated nights (it was 10.30pm, so counted as a first night) and wait for contractions to begin – or head home, try and get some sleep, and come in when contractions had started. It seemed a no-brainer. We got back in the car, and made the now very familiar drive home.

And – you guessed it – my contractions began. They were crampy-like, down deep (I believe they call it perineal pain!?) and within half an hour were coming every 2-3 minutes, lasting 45 seconds. It was intense, and it wasn’t long before I was doubled over the kitchen table having a good old holler. It was time to go back to the hospital. For the fourth time.

THURSDAY NIGHT/FRIDAY MORNING

The drive to the hospital was one of those surreal, out-of-body experiences where you’re living something you’ve imagined so. many. times. I was bellowing over speed bumps and bracing myself on the roof of the car. I couldn’t make it across the footpath until a contraction had passed, and had to stop again – doubled over and moaning – outside the lift. We arrived in the delivery suite and Mr Bun asked where we should set up our TENS machine. The midwife looked at me, and gently said, ‘It’s a little late for that, love’.

With the help of gas and a shot of p.ethadine, Mr Bun and I worked through the contractions together. While things were progressing really quickly, and the pain was intense – I felt in control of my labour. Mr Bun was AMAZEBALLS, and really helped me work through each peak and trough of pain.

Around 3am Dr Spock came in and announced I’d gone from 3cm to 10cm in a few hours (woah). And that, being fully dilated, I’d be soon be getting the urge to push and the baby would be not far away. The contractions had peaked, she said. While I had been gently suggesting (ie. starting to shout) for an e.pidural, this news changed things. I felt calm. In control. I could do one more hour – sure I could!  We agreed to a top-up of p.ethadine and got ready for Baby Time. Labour is easy, people. I am a birthing legend. Bring on the champagne and streamers!

This did not happen.

This did: bad things. Painful, sobbing, begging-my-husband-to-help-me-please things. I did not get an urge to push. The baby was not moving anywhere. The contractions were getting worse. And the ANAESTHETIST AND DR SPOCK HAD BOTH BEEN CALLED AWAY TO ANOTHER LABOUR. Endless minutes passed. Time slowed. Mr Bun looked stricken. It was a shit way to spend the early hours of a Friday.

Dr Spock eventually reappeared and immediately approved the goddamn epidural, and then broke the news that the anaesthetist was still an hour away. The ensuing 60 minutes were the toughest of the labour.

When the epidural finally did arrive it was incredible – obviously. It’s amazing that you can go from 100km/h to 0 in just 15 minutes. Drugs are GREAT.

I had a little sleep, and then we got down to business. The actual birth of Little Bun was the most peaceful, beautiful thing. Our favourite music played. Mr Bun and Dr Spock chatted and joked quietly. When our baby emerged, calm and peaceful and very, very beautiful – there was an explosive pink and purple sunrise out the window. I reached down and pulled her onto my belly, and then my chest. I was the first to see that she was a she. A few tears were shed. She latched onto my boob. Our daughter was here. We had become three.

There’s so much more to tell. The blissful post-baby days in hospital, surrounded by bustling midwives and the heady scent of endless flowers. The Baby Blues and how they muck with your mind. The sleep deprivation and how it mucks with your EVERYTHING. The, frankly, horrible breastfeeding trials of clinics and classes and consultants (and how, four weeks later, I’m nearly there). What it feels like to have a baby, after so long of wanting one.

But you’ll have to bear with me. This post is being completed three days after it was begun. Time at home with a newborn is liquid. Your day, your life is not your own. You exist to serve another, so things like blogging – and eating, and brushing your hair – become luxuries.

Let me just say one thing: to those of you, waiting and hoping and trying your goddamndest to get what you want. Whatever you end up choosing, whatever ends up being your story – know that there are people out there who hurt as much as you did, who begged and hoped and prayed as hard as you did, and they are here. On the other side. With what they wished for.

x

She’s Here.

Our daughter arrived early Friday morning after a pretty intense 11 hour labour.

She is, of course, the most beautiful thing we have ever seen.

I’m still in hospital. There have been some feeding issues that, coupled with hormones and a lack of sleep, have made for a really challenging time.

But none of it matters. She’s here. She’s healthy. We’re so, so lucky. And so, so happy.

I’ll write more when I’m home.

x

Overdue (40w4d)

If I hadn’t received a due date – if I was living in a wooden shack somewhere in the 17th century – then last night is when my body would have told me, ‘OK. You’re late.’ Up until then I was feeling alright. I was embarrassed to receive looks and texts of concern, feeling a little like an imposter.

But now, now I’m feeling it. The pressure of the baby is immense. The discomfort in my groin, hips and pelvis is ever-increasing. It’s now almost impossible to get off the couch or out of the car without help (Mr Bun is being called on more and more often … I crouched down to unload groceries this weekend and he had to help me up … gawd knows what I’d have done if I was alone).

I had a second fetal monitoring session this AM, and all is looking normal – bub, heartrate, fluid levels – all good. Then Dr Spock examined me, and stripped my membranes. I BELLOWED. It was fah-reaking painful. Seriously, as she rummaged around down there I almost levitated off the table. Any longer and she would have been stripping me off the ceiling.

I laughed nervously afterwards, ‘Um, s’pose I need to work on my pain management skills, hey?’ She gave me side-eye which didn’t make me feel any better.

She said I’m not dilated at all, but my cervix has softened. The little membrane ‘sweep’ (such a bullshit term) she did may, but is unlikely to, get labour started. If not, we stick with the more likely plan which has me getting a dose of Prost.aglandin gel on Wednesday night, heading home, then back on the Oxy.tocin drop on Thursday morning.

Sheeeeeeeze.

In the meantime, I sit tight, nervously witter my way towards Wednesday night, and wonder if I may actually go into labour ahead of then. Not very motherly of me, but – faaark!

x

Where I’m Admitted to Hospital (38w3d)

Pain’s a bastard, right? Because it normally goes hand-in-hand with exhaustion, which means it’s friends with helplessness, and comes with a small side dish of panic.

Dr Spock sent me off to hospital.

After visiting her for my normal weekly check up on Monday, and my last post on Tuesday, the ‘roids got worse and worse. So much worse in fact, that I was doubled over sobbing by Thursday – at which point Mr Bun gently asked, why didn’t I try Dr Spock again?

On hearing how I was going (badly, would be an understatement) she asked me to come in and bring my overnight bag. I don’t know what I expected, but it wasn’t that. What she explained was, if you’re in so much pain you can’t sleep, then you become exhausted and can’t heal … so you need to break the cycle by getting some proper pain medication.

So I ended up in the maternity ward for two nights, getting some rest and a little relief. It was pretty strange being there, surrounded by the cries of very-newborn babes. The midwives were all – mostly – lovely. Many asked ‘does this mean you’ll have a c-section then?’ When I raised this with Dr Spock she rolled her eyes. ‘Absolutely not’, she scoffed, ‘you should treat this as totally separate from your labour. This will get better – you’re just taking a little longer than most.’

I’m not sure if I believe her, but it made me feel a little better.

I really wanted out of there by the third day. Dr Spock wasn’t on call this weekend, so her backup Dr Bark came in to see me before I could be discharged. Well. She was a barrel of laughs. Basically told me the pain relief Dr Spock had prescribed me was ‘wrong’ because it would constipate me and make the problem worse. When I told her I was still in extreme amounts of pain she looked at me blankly. ‘Well – it’s your decision.’ How’s that for bedside manner? We can only hope she doesn’t end up overseeing our delivery …

So, I’m home, and still feeling pretty rotten. I am trying to stay away from the heavy-duty drugs, but the pain’s still bad enough at night to have me crying and feeling faint. I feel pretty hopeless. I’m weak, tired, very sore and certainly not exuding the rested, strong, at-peace, hippie-love pregnant vibe I was expecting at 38 weeks.

I trust my doctor. She says this will get better soon. My baby is moving around like a trooper and our house is ready for his or her arrival. Mr Bun is doing everything while I slide between bed and couch, and I have a cracking support team scattered around giving me lots of love. Need to focus on the positives and hope that this, too, shall pass.

Lists and Superstitions (34w3d)

I’ve just finished writing four lists:

  1. Things to buy for the baby (8 million babygros, singlets, wraps etc etc)
  2. Things to buy for me (padded-housebrick maternity pads, 20 supersize black knickers etc etc)
  3. Things to pack for labour (‘glucose treats’ – lollies? – ginormous nighties etc)
  4. Things to pack for the hospital stay (dressing gown, ‘non-slip bed socks’ … seriously!? etc)

I’ve tried to be brutal in making these, only including what my girlfriends, the eminently sensible prenatal class maternity nurse, and Kaz Cooke say is absolutely necessary. Yet I still have a selection that would make any practical person squirm. How do people keep this megaload to two bags!? Are any of you following a ‘master list’ online? Would you pre-purchase everything, or leave until after the baby is born?

Which brings me to the second half of my post’s title. The Huggies* update was once again right on the money with this week’s update:

“At 34 weeks pregnant, you could worry that there may be something wrong with your baby which hasn’t been detected yet. You may wonder how you and your partner will cope if there is a problem and how this will impact on your life. Many women become very superstitious at this stage of their pregnancy and see “signs” which they interpret as being proof there is something wrong. Dreams, seeing someone with a physical or intellectual impairment, hearing of other new parents who’ve had a baby with problems can all cause great concern.”

This is me to a tee.

As we get closer to the due date, I can’t put off doing some pretty significant baby things any longer. Mr Bun put the cot up today (WOW). I’ve got these aforementioned lists that are going to require some pretty heavy-duty time in the baby shopping department. And I just can’t help but think, ‘what if?’ Is this all tempting fate?

Basically, my superstition radar is going BERKO.

I had a good chat to Dr Spock a few weeks ago about my anxiety around this sort of thing, and her answer was perfectly balanced between the rational (giving me the facts and trying to appease me with odds and stats), and the emotional (gently explaining that this sort of anxiety is normal, and I just have to remove triggers like nasty/depressing/tragic mag articles, news stories etc etc from my life).

Of course, the ongoing movement of the little one is really the only thing that makes me feel calm. But all it takes is one shred of doubt, or one whisper of  story, or one quiet day from the baby, and I find myself panicking that something awful will happen.

In black and white this looks extreme. But I guess that’s one of the roles of this blog. To express how I feel, and in doing so, to lighten the load a little?

It’s also not the full story. The majority of the time I am excited, scared, in awe, uncomfortable and your all-round pretty average first-time-preggy-lady in her last few weeks. It’s just these black spots. I try not to dwell on them. I try to combat them with happy, shiny thoughts.

Here’s to a week ahead filled with those happy, shiny things – for all of us.

 

*While I’ve been subscribed to Baby Center throughout this pregnancy, consistently I’ve found the Huggies updates to be the best: detailed, accurate, helpful and interesting. I was skeptical initially because it was branded, but well done the Huggies marketing team for creating such good content!

A Peek at L&D (31w4d)

Mr Bun and I took a detour on this gloriously warm, sunshine-filled Labour Day … we finally saw the inside of our maternity ward … !

The baby had been very quiet yesterday, but by the time I went for my nightly wee (I’m still working on keeping it to once a night) I started getting really worried. Dinner, drinks, bedtime, middle-of-the-night toilet breaks – all of these are normally events that wake the little one up enough to give me a squirm and a stretch and a ‘Hello, I’m here!’ But – nothing for almost 24 hours.

I lay on the sofa at 3am drinking icy cold, super sweet cordial. Nothing. I went back to sleep and got up to a big plate of toast and juice. Nothing. I went for a walk in the mid-morning sun. Nothing.

At my fortnightly appointment with Dr Spock last week I’d mentioned my ongoing anxiety that something would happen to the baby in utero. There have been a proliferation of articles in the mags I get through work lately. All – terribly – containing desperately sad tales of babies dying at 38, 39, 40 weeks with no warning and no explanation.

I’ve stopped reading those magazines.

Dr Spock was wonderful, as usual, and talked me through the stats and likelihoods and all that rational stuff. But she also said that the only thing I can really do is be vigilant, keep a close eye on the baby’s movements, and speak up if I ever felt worried. So, I called the Maternity Ward and they told me to come straight in.

I was expecting a long wait and the need to re-explain my story to a few different nurses, but they were expecting us. We were taken straight into a small delivery room and hooked up to monitoring for 20 minutes. There wasn’t much fluctuation and they had me stay for another 20 minutes until they were happy enough to send me home (after faxing the results to Dr Spock to be triply sure). The baby had a few big movements while I was hooked up (typical!) but has been very quiet since. So – good news!?

I know as bub gets bigger the movements will become less and less, but I just can’t shake this fear. Is it the fact I’m a neurotic hypochondriac? Is it that we tried and tried for three years and only found failure and loss? Is it typical first-time jitters? Probably all of the above. What I do know is I’m skating so close to fear and panic all the time. Routines and superstitions and things I’ve come to rely on (like a very active baby) are keeping me on the right side of ‘normal’ – all it takes is a day like today to reveal just how frightened I am.

But, I pick myself up, focus on the thumping, whooshing heartbeat I listened to for 40 minutes today, and hope this little baby decides to get its bum back into gear tomorrow!

The Big 3-0 (30w1d)

Well hi there!

A big milestone this week – thirty whole weeks. Holy cow! Feeling pretty blessed to have made it this far.

The past month of pregnancy has really tipped into a different speed (slow) and feeling (discomfort). I’ve had nothing truly serious to complain about – but there has been some pretty crappy rib pain that’s causing some issues.

It started about three weeks ago – it’s the oddest, localised (size of a ten cent piece), burning pain (like a lit cigar held against my skin) just under my left boob. It only appears when I sit and can be quite intense. Physio, stretching, ice packs – I’m doing it all with no improvement – so Dr Spock actually sent me in for a x-ray last week. I discussed it with her a fair bit beforehand, did some reading, and decided it was the right thing to do. She was keen to rule out ‘anything sinister’ (nasty words), so I was too.

They didn’t find anything – good news. And that’s fine with me: as long as I know the baby and I are OK, I can handle the pain. It does mean that I have to restructure my work for my last weeks in the office, as I can’t sit at my desk for more than a few hours. Thank god for the mobile interwebs and an understanding boss. I see a lot of couch-working in my future!

Apart from my cigar-rib, the shift into the third trimester has been pretty much as I expected. I’m finding pregnancy is a lot about hindsight. When I was in the early weeks, I didn’t think I was that typical – yet looking back I was queasy, exhausted and pretty textbook! Again with the second trimester, I was scoffing that they were meant to be the ‘easy months’ – but now I’m bigger, heavier, stiffer and more swollen … easy sounds about right!

Symptom Check …

– Swollen feet, hands and calves. Mmm …squiggy piggy fingers and toes. My havaianas are my footwear of choice – morning, night, corporate meetings and supermarket runs. Am dreading the cooler weather and the requirement to wear some proper shoes …

– Mr Bun has ALWAYS teased me for my brilliant ‘skillz’ (!) found in my crab-like toes … seriously, I can pick up ANYTHING with my foot digits. When were were kids, I could even give my brother a vicious horsebite with either foot. Anyhoo – skillz indeed, as I now can’t bend over that easily, and my toes come in handy every day. Here here for access to the ground without bending down!

– Kicks and punches are turning into big, sweeping twists and rolls. The bub’s movements tickle often, and actually even hurt sometimes. My tum can look like there’s someone doing a 90’s rave hop in there – which I guess there sorta is

– I am properly-freakin-ENORMOUS. Like, people ask me if I’m having twins enormous (I killed her). I have one big bump people. I’ve started dreading telling curious semi-strangers my due date when they inevitably ask, as the response is a sharp intake of breath, a quick glance at my belly and some raised eyebrows. ‘Oh! Well! Wow … you’re pretty big already?!’ I’d round-kick them in the face if I could lift my legs.

I try not to let it bother me. I won’t lie, the body image is taking some battering as my face, upper arms, thighs and bum start to catch up with the rest of my increasing girth. But, I remind myself of the times I wished and prayed for this – and all I would have given to be here, right now. A fat ass and some unflattering chin softening is no price at all.

We have been up to our ears in plaster dust and paint fumes (hello paranoid Bunless living with every window and door open) with the longest kitchen reno EVER rolling on and on. The nursery doesn’t yet exist – a wall needs to be put up to create it. I’m trying to remain zen*, and figure we can do the baby buying, building, washing and nesting in the coming month/s.

I am starting to think more about birth, and what happens after that. It’s exhilarating and terrifying – I worry so often that something will go wrong. But I try and think positively, which is when my head explodes with THIS IS REAL and I have to eat cake and watch junk teeve.

OK. It’s Friday night and I’ve got to get back down to the pub and crack on with my drinking, partying and general carousing it’s time to take my prenatal vitamins and roll into bed with my 128 pillows.

G’night all. Hope you are happy where you are.

I’m finding the blog and the pregnancy to be a difficult partnership. I still have so many superstitions whirling around my pregnant self, and I find the blog becoming tangled up in that. Many times I go to post, but I tell myself ‘I need to wait for the next appointment / week / purchase / test result’ before I do … it’s difficult to explain. But I’m sure you understand.

* HA HA HA haha HA

Kleenex anyone? (24w2d)

I can’t stop crying.

Not sweet n’ kooky ‘weeping at a sad puppy story on the 6pm news’ crying, but more ‘lying on the couch ugly-sobbing for no real reason’ crying.

It’s been a HUGE week at work. I’ve been clocking 12 hour days. The pattern this week was brutal: get up early to get into the office early, start work before the phone and email kick off, lunch at my desk, finish late, home, dinner, bed. That’s been me.

So yes, I recognise these crying jags are mostly linked to over-tiredness. I just feel so hopeless. It’s a stunning, postcard-perfect Summer’s day out there and all I’ve managed to do is eat some toast and do some internet banking. I am just so tired. Mr Bun has escaped, off to do some errands. So it’s just me and the Beast. Under the aircon, staring out at the blue sky, having our own little pity party.

Here is what I would like to be doing today:

  • Vacuuming and mopping the floors
  • Cleaning the bathroom
  • Folding the laundry
  • Going to get my toes done
  • Picking up toiletries at Priceline
  • Having lunch out somewhere, enjoying the kickass weather
  • Walking the dog
  • Being nice to my husband
  • Not crying

Here is what I am doing today:

  • Crying
  • Feeling guilty
  • Feeling sorry for myself
  • Repeat

The two lowlights of the week were bursting into tears in front of my boss when he asked me to pick up another project (on Friday afternoon), that was due on Monday. He ended up doing it himself.

The second, was being on the receiving end of the worst haircut I’ve ever had. They took off a good TEN CENTIMETERS more than I wanted. I am feeling like an enormous roly poly round person at the best of times, so a short cut right now has me looking like a lesbian trucker* from 1994. It’s so bad I can only tie it up for two months and wait for it to grow. Seriously. My hair was really the last part of me that still felt like ‘me’ and now it’s gone. Just thinking about it gets me going again.

OK. Deep breath. Time to see past the hormones and FWP’s and get over this.

The GOOD things about this week have been ‘turning’ six months pregnant!! It’s like we’ve passed a real milestone and I’m feeling the most positive and excited about the baby that I ever have. The bub is kicking more and more each day, and every punch, wiggle, turn and push fills me with this glowing, warm rush of happiness (mood swings, anyone?). While the pregnancy still seems to be going very slowly, I am starting to realise that May really isn’t that far away. I think because there’s so much to do between now and then – I am becoming more appreciative of the months and months us humans are given to gestate.

We are also about to get a whole lot of work done on the house, including a new kitchen. It’s going to be dusty and disruptive, but the thought of some significant improvements to the house we’ve been in for nearly two years is truly exciting. I mean, we’ve been living without a dishwasher for nine months**!

OK. I’m feeling a little better. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not ungrateful. By no means do I wish any of this to be any different. It’s just the ups and downs. It’s seriously more intense from an emotional perspective than I expected. But I’ll take it. I’ll take whatever I have to, as long as it means health and happiness at the end.

Have a great week, everybody.

* No offence to lesbian truckers. It’s just not my style.

**Another FWP