Category: pregnancy

22 weeks pregnant.

This week started off in quite an emotionally draining way. While I usually revel in the school holidays (getting to lie in bed for longer and no school runs or lunch boxes to prep), by the second week, I was looking forward to school going back. I needed a routine and I needed time to myself to tick a lot of things off an ever increasing to do list. I’d truly enjoyed the Little Mister’s company but I was starting to get a bit stressed.

Hold up…rash update coming! 😜

I spent the first half of the week having to talk myself down from freaking out about my PUPPP rash (yep – that old chestnut). Exhausting. I felt like I was fighting for my mental health. I was winning but the fight took a lot out of me. I had been stressed to be slightly under-prescribed the ointment I needed and there’s a little story about me not being too happy with the local pharmacy too but we won’t get into that. Little inconveniences like that can really set me back – the anxiety is not far from the surface, when it comes to my condition. When managed well it can almost seem like a non issue, but when there’s a fear of not having enough medication or being able to keep things under control, my nerves can feel shot to shit. Care-givers, please be aware.

One night, I let myself have a good cry and whinge about it for 15 minutes before bed. I was worried I was losing the plot after fighting so hard to not give in to my self pity, but it turned out to be a good stress release. I actually felt better after. I figure I probably need to let myself have a short pity party once a week, just to let it all out. Can’t bottle it up!

Luckily, the second half of the week wasn’t too bad. The steroid ointment was starting to work on the sides of my body (I’ve figured out that there must be about a week’s lead time in applying it twice a day before significant improvements happen) and I had figured out that good sleep comes from wearing very little to bed (a little easier during the school term because the Little Mister is less likely to disturb me in the mornings as I get up before him). Sadly, this rash is aggressive and not curable while this baby is inside me, so it is now trying to attack my legs and feet – not a very attractive look when a girl just wants to wear a shorter skirt/dress. I am getting onto it as fast as I can with treatment and I am hoping that the roughly week long lead in required with the ointment will kick in sooner rather than later.

This week I got myself prepared to clean up my diet and exercise more. I am well aware that in a month or so I have my glucose tolerance test to determine whether I have gestational diabetes for a second time around or not. While I may not be able to sway my results (if it’s in your genes it’s in your genes), I am hoping I can improve my health and therefore my test readings. Even if I am cursed with it for a second time, I want good habits to already be a part of my lifestyle when that diagnosis arrives. Makes the transition to diabetes friendly living easier, both mentally and physically. I want it to be on my terms. The stubborn rebel in me hated being treated like a child and told what to do last time. I want to pretend this was all my idea anyway haha. Never any harm in having healthy habits.

I did some research (I was a bit rusty after being 6 years gestational diabetes free) and I made a plan. I bought all of the foods that would keep me snacking healthily. While I haven’t been a perfect angel (why should I – no diagnosis yet!) I have significantly changed my habits for the better which I am very pleased with myself about. I was giving into a few too many sugary/carb loaded cravings beforehand – oops! The improved diet isn’t actually that different to what I was doing as part of my Kez Gets Physical efforts before I was pregnant so I am not finding it as hard as last time.

I enjoyed a little retail therapy this week. I was worried about finding clothes that were rash, maternity and summer weather friendly all in one. The weather has finally started to heat up around here (well it has its ups and downs but mostly I think spring has arrived). I was thrilled when I headed into Target and found some fantastic, light weight, flowy maxi dresses that fit me! The same design comes in like 4 different gorgeous prints so I bought 3 of them – yay! Big confidence boost to know that I will have something nice to wear every day. I might even go back and buy a second one of each if they haven’t sold out (I predict they will – fast). The great thing is that they are not maternity dresses so I can wear them after I’ve had the baby in the heat of summer too! YES! This successful shopping session got me thinking about maybe putting together a blog post about affordable maternity style hacks for those of us who can’t afford the inflated prices of maternity wear in the popular boutiques, or who do not live near the big name specialty maternity retailers (as much as internet shopping is THE BOMB sometimes it can be good to be able to try something on first or we might need something in a hurry). We’ll see. I won’t make any promises but the idea is brewing away!

The Little Mister informed me that we should name the baby Butterfly when she’s born. Because butterflies are beautiful and nobody else will think to name their baby Butterfly. I don’t know if I’d be sold on that one, but I thought his sentiment was very lovely. Maybe we can nickname the bump Butterfly (if for no other reason than to ditch Mr Unprepared’s very annoying nickname for it which I will not even dignify with a mention here)!

Here I am at 22 weeks…

Fellow mamas, don’t ignore your mental health…

I just realised that it’s world mental health day today. Which feels timely for me because I’ve been thinking a lot about my mental health lately. See, being pregnant has not come easy to me this time around (you may have read all about the emotional roller coaster I experienced with secondary infertility and IVF which was thankfully successful). And pregnancy itself is sadly not all unicorns and rainbows for me either. I experience a severe and at times distressing rash known as PUPPP and last time I was pregnant, I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes – something I am trying to mentally prepare myself for this time around. I also can become more anxious than usual, because that’s what hormones do to me.

Being pregnant for a second time around has really made me reflect on how things went last time (all the way back in 2011), compared to how I hope things will go this time.

A couple of times throughout pregnancy, most Aussie women will do a short quiz to help with the detection of depression/anxiety symptoms. Last time I was pregnant, I made a big mistake. I lied.

I was feeling stress in my relationship, I was suffering awfully from living with my rash and the gestational diabetes diagnosis just felt like the icing on the cake. I was depressed. I was feeling a horrible horrible guilt for some of the dark thoughts I had. One of those thoughts was wishing everything would just go away – pregnancy included. Of course I did not mean that one bit. I loved the Little Mister before we even conceived him and I knew I loved him while he was inside me – not every single moment was awful. I knew I would love him when he arrived earth side. I just felt so distressed and down that my mind said mean things to me sometimes.

I was desperate and crying a lot.

But when I walked into my appointment with the midwife, I lied. Because I didn’t want to deal with it. I felt overwhelmed at the idea of having to talk to someone about what I was feeling. I already felt like I was busy enough growing a human and trying to survive the day by day. I knew what they were looking for in that quiz so I manipulated my answers just enough that I wouldn’t be confronted with offers of further support.

When the midwife told me that I was showing some signs of depression, I lied and told her that it was just the rash getting me down – everything else was fine. She had to take my word for it. I was an idiot.

If I had accessed support groups or counselling or even medication, I might have fared a bit better for the rest of my pregnancy and what was to follow.

While being a new mum, having a slightly traumatic birth, feeling a bit like you have no idea what you’re doing, you’re so tired and the hormones are wreaking havoc is part and package of being thrust into new parenthood, I now know that the almost crippling anxiety I suffered from after the Little Mister was born, was beyond ‘normal’ or ‘healthy’ – for me. I felt that my husband didn’t know how to support me emotionally either (in fact even he will admit he was terribly unhelpful in that area), which made it worse.

So this time I will be honest. I have already had some pretty tough moments. It’s really hard work staying chipper and positive all the time. I’m constantly having to talk my anxious side down. It’s a hard fight and it can be exhausting trying to keep yourself strong. When I take that quiz again, I will be brutally honest with myself and with my caregivers. That is my promise to myself. I will also reach out if I am struggling after the Little Miss is born. I will do what it takes to be a healthy mum to my kids –  it’s what they deserve. I won’t pretend I’m fine if I’m not. I will not make excuses about why my mental health needs to come last. I will not let my fears of what other people may think influence my choices as a parent. Even if that means having to make myself vulnerable and put my hand up and say, “LITTLE HELP OVER HERE, PLEASE.”

I want to enjoy these special moments and while I was lucky to share such a strong bond with the Little Mister from the beginning, which helped enormously in getting me through, I know I did cheat myself out of having the peace of mind that comes with looking after your mental health for almost the whole first year of his life. I agonised over so many little decisions as if they were all life or death (they weren’t) and I isolated myself more than I’d like to admit. You can imagine how exhausting that was day in and day out.

So my message to all my pregnant or ‘new mum’ friends out there is to be honest. Speak out. Don’t try to be perfect, like Mrs Snootybitch over there on Instagram. Don’t be afraid to let someone know when it’s all too much. I know there’s a lot of judgement and stigma out there, but we can only beat it if we keep trying. Keep looking for your tribe – I promise we’re out there. Use resources such as beyond blue. Speak to your community nurse at your baby’s check ups. Your midwife. Your doctor. Tell your partner when they’re being really fucking unhelpful (you might not want to use those exact words ha ha but you need support so ask for it – a baby is the quickest way to highlight issues you may have already had in your relationship so maybe you both need some help together).

Please don’t make the mistake I made my first time around. Look after yourself. You’re the heart of your family. It is so important that you do what you need to do to get better. Make time. Speak out. If you’re surrounded by arseholes, then find people who make you feel good about yourself and don’t expect you to be perfect. Don’t put yourself last – mum guilt is not an excuse. What Carol Whatsherface on Facebook said once about selfish parents or parents who give up on breastfeeding or mums who struggle a bit harder with becoming parents for the first time, is not a good enough reason to not ask for help. Carol Whatsherface is a fucking moll.

I am sending so much love to everyone out there who has struggled with their mental health at some time or other. Take care of yourself – you’re not alone.

21 weeks pregnant.

This week felt like a mixed bag of emotions! That damn rash I’m experiencing got me down a bit. I realised that I should be kind to myself and acknowledge that it can be really draining when your body is constantly fighting itself. I was a bit embarrassed at how tired and big I felt. I mean, come on – I’d only just passed the half way mark and I was carrying on like I was about to pop! I was wishing time would speed up because I was already SO over it. Which is dumb because I have SO MUCH stuff to do before the baby arrives and also, I felt guilty for not enjoying things more after wanting this for so long.

But then I realised that I have wanted a baby for so long. I have wanted the end result. The completion of my family. So what if pregnancy is not a perfect experience for me? It’s worth it in the end and I would never not have signed up for that. The Little Mister is proof that eventually the scars (and the itching) fade and it’s a blip on the radar of my life – even if a very significant and memorable one. It’s definitely a marathon and not a sprint for me! I just keep striving to keep perspective.

In saying that, I think that should we have everything go well and the baby arrives healthy, this will be my last pregnancy. FOR SURE. I mean, you can say ‘never say never’ but right this minute I know I will be glad to see the end of worrying about pregnancy and fertility. I will love my family of four fiercely, enjoy my two as they grow and that will be that.

Speaking of the rash, I cracked and called my clinic. I spoke to a lovely midwife (who I know personally also) who helped me to get a prescription for a slightly stronger steroid ointment (the same one I used last pregnancy). It felt good to be proactive. I think I could do with a lot more (the tubes are TINY and I don’t want to have to chase it up every time I run out) but I think it’s helping? In all honesty, it’s kind of hard to tell at the moment. I think the rash itself is spreading down my legs a bit but the symptoms are manageable. I still get a bit distressed in the late afternoon and in the evenings but I can get about during the day OK.

I had a lot of down time this week. I slept a lot and this was good. I needed it. But it was also difficult because quiet days, no matter how much I need them, mean itchier moments with less distractions. More difficult thoughts with no distractions – it really does your head in. Trying to find a balance! I don’t recall being this uncomfortable at night last time. I think because this rash is on my sides where I sleep, whereas last time it was mostly on my front. You win some you lose some, I guess.

Anyway, I should probably just rename these weekly blog posts “RASH UPDATES” but hey. I’m trying to give an honest account. Sadly this consumes me a lot. Maybe when I’m clucky after this baby is born, I can read back and think OH HELL NO. NEVER AGAIN. Just a little reminder to future me haha.

Some other stuff did happen, though!

I started to get slightly leaky boobs. Yep. Little drops of colostrum! I thought that I was a freak having this happen early, but apparently it seems to be kind of common at this stage of pregnancy. It happened with the Little Mister too! Sadly, last time my breastfeeding efforts were kind of thwarted when he was born, but I like to think that this could mean a good supply this time around, should I be able to avoid too much trauma during birth (and the antibiotics didn’t help either).

The Little Miss (yep – she’s got her own moniker already – very original as you can see) is already being showered with gifts. I bought her very first book this week. I am so excited to teach her about inspirational women and encourage her to be a strong, confident and awesome little rebel (in all the good ways).

I feel like it’s important to balance out all of the fairy tales where the princess waits around to be rescued by a prince. I hope this book can be a great keepsake for many years to come.

I also felt so happy when I received a surprise package in the mail from a lovely friend.

It contained a beautiful little outfit – the shirt has a unicorn on it. What more can I say? OK, besides it being so cute, I was really appreciative of this gift. It came on a day when I was feeling quite flat and a bit dejected because of the…yes I am mentioning it again…rash. This picked me up at the exact right time. I am so grateful for the love the Little Miss is receiving already from the people in my life.

The baby’s kicks are increasing and sometimes I can even see my belly bounce ever so slightly when I feel one. Mr Unprepared has been able to feel them even more and that’s been lovely.

Also, my t-shirts which seemed SO oversized at the beginning of my pregnancy are starting to look ridiculously short on me. I might need to do a little more shopping for maternity wear once school goes back – any excuse, right?

Here’s me at 21 weeks…

Thanks for reading! x

20 weeks pregnant.

With the start of the school holidays, came my 20th week of pregnancy. I was so relieved to have a little time off from having to get out of bed at the butt crack of dawn (how good is it when your kid can get their own breakfast?!) and doing the school runs which eat up so much of my days. It felt amazing to turn off all of my alarms and just go with the flow. I realised just how much energy the school stuff was taking out of me. The holidays could not have come at a better time!

If you read my last blog post, you would have seen that I struggled a few times with the PUPPP rash this week. I had a couple of full on anxiety moments and I had to fight myself a lot to calm the fuck down. The rash has spread a bit more but I am trying to stay positive. I keep trying to remind myself that even though it can be torturous and can take up a lot of my energy and time, it is still (so far) not as bad as it was when I was pregnant with the Little Mister. Sometimes just staying calm can take some of its power away.

This week it was so great to spend some quality time with my mum – our first real catch up time since we found out we’re having a girl. We took the Little Mister shopping and gathered some intel on what’s in the bigger baby shops since I was last pregnant. Six years is a long time, it turns out. There are heaps more places to shop and products that are useful or cute, than there were last time! This trip really helped me to put together an idea of what colour scheme I like for the nursery and I even picked up a gorgeous cot sheet and play mat for half price! Yay! The Little Mister and I might have also picked out a couple of tiny baby outfits too! It was so lovely to include the big brother to be in the process. I think it made him feel really important.

One of the Little Mister’s jobs was to pick out a special little Jellycat bunny for the baby. He’s had one since he was little and as he’s too old to get a gift from the baby when she’s born (as if a 6 year old will fall for that haha), I figured maybe he could give her a gift (and I’m sure he’ll be spoiled by us with something special of his own when the time comes too). His brief was simply to pick out one that looked good to him but was different from his own so that they wouldn’t get mixed up. He picked a gorgeous mint green one and he cuddled it for the rest of the day, vowing to take care of it until his baby sister is born. We did have to pry it from him when we got home (so we can keep it in good condition and ensure he doesn’t get too attached and not want to give it away) but he knows it’s there and I know he’ll take his job seriously as my due date gets closer!

Another cool thing that has changed since I had the Little Mister is technology! I was able to sit down and create a bit of a Pinterest vision board for the nursery-to-be (aka currently neglected spare room aka the Little Mister’s former nursery) and then I could forward the link for it straight to my mum so she could see what I am thinking about! Very cool. Once the Little Mister is back in school, I will have to get my A into G and really get decorating! It will be so much easier this time around, as there won’t be as much to do – we have a lot of the big stuff like a cot, change table, furniture etc. I am so glad we bought it all in a classic, neutral white.

My mum would be glad to know that I’m trying harder to be a breakfast person these days. This week, I started eating overnight oats and making breakfast cookies (they are nothing but healthy ingredients). I am not perfect at it, but I definitely need something first thing in the morning to keep me from feeling faint or woozy. Growing a baby takes a lot out of me!

For this week’s bump photo, I threw on a tie dye dress I wore a lot when pregnant with the Little Mister. I love the colours but it’s looking a little worn out after all this time haha.

My mirror selfies feel a bit more awkward now. I think I’m getting a bit chubby around my back as I haven’t been keeping up with toning that area since I got pregnant. It’s one of my sensitive/self conscious areas so I try to hide it – just thought I’d tell you about it anyway – I might not feel like showing it off, but I feel like I should keep it real haha. It’s hard to get a good angle – any tips on how to hold your phone while taking a bad mirror selfie?! I feel so unco! How do those “professional” “influencers” and “Insta models” make it look so easy?!

Anyway, that’s it for this week! x

PUPPP rash: Round 2.

I feel like I’ve mentioned this a lot lately, but I have this pregnancy rash called PUPPP – again. I had it when I was pregnant with the Little Mister and very nearly went insane. Actually, I think I did go insane – I just pretended I wasn’t. Now I have it while expecting a Little Miss 6 years later. At first I thought maybe I was just sensitive to heat and hoped like hell it wasn’t what I thought it might be. But now I know that it is indeed PUPPP.

Having it for a second time around is like a double edged sword. On the one hand, I feel like I know what to expect and I know which mistakes I do not want to repeat: waiting too long to get help, seeing doctors etc who are not experienced, keeping it to myself and stressing all alone. I know which treatments are most likely to help and which suggestions from well meaning people and websites are probably going to make things worse.

On the other hand, because I do know what to expect, I freak out a bit because the reality of having this condition has come flooding back to me and I have to separate my anxiety about it getting much worse from the reality which is that it seemingly isn’t as bad as last time…yet.

The first time around, I used a steroid ointment prescribed by a dermatologist. This time I am using a slightly weaker cream to start with, as well as taking antihistamines before bed each night. I think these things are helping to keep the rash contained in its hot spots for the most part. Some parts of me have completely cleared up (they may have just been heat rashes all along just to confuse matters). I don’t think these treatments actually prevent me from itching, though. Especially at night or in the late afternoon, when things are quiet and I have no distractions.

I find that stress has been a factor in making it feel worse. The more I think about it, worry about it, or get myself into an anxious state, the more itchy I feel. The more itchy I feel, the more unattractive and embarrassed and hopeless I feel, the more exhausted I get. The more exhausted I am, the more likely I am to be vulnerable to anxiety. It’s a vicious cycle.

Often I wake in the night, scratching. I will struggle to fall asleep. I will feel everything. Every bit of fabric rubbing on my skin. I will think that this is surely a sign that things are getting catastrophically worse. Then in the morning, I will look in the mirror and realise that the rash hasn’t really changed since yesterday. I try to remind myself of this every subsequent night.

Here are the things that are helping me this time around:

Talk it out – get help fast – don’t let embarrassment stop you

You can get itchy with PUPPP in odd, embarrassing places. It can make you feel like a freak. But I have learned since last time that talking/blogging about this, tweeting about this, joining an online support group about this, admitting when I’m feeling mental, helps. Nobody can help you if you pretend everything’s fine. When people ask how I’m feeling as a pregnant woman, I’ll be honest now. Oh, I’m so so excited about this beautiful baby girl on the way, but I am struggling at times with itchiness – I’m actually allergic to her DNA or hormones or something! Sure, the person who asked how I am might be getting more than they bargained for, but I owe it to myself (and others) to be honest about it all. I am not one of those over sharing during small talk kinds of people, but in this instance, a simple sentence like that really helps me to feel like I’m not hiding or pretending.

I rushed to get help this time. I didn’t double guess myself. I knew the rash could be nothing but it could be PUPPP too. It was good to get my knowledgeable doctor’s take on it right away. I truly believe that early intervention has helped me to feel empowered and has maybe even slowed down its progress.

Wear breathable clothing/sleep on good bedding ASAP

No more jeans or leggings! Dresses, skirts, fabrics that feel soft on my skin. Things that breathe. It has been a challenge as the weather has been so crazy lately. Going from sunny and spring like, to cold and rainy and windy and back again. But I have minimised the amount of fabric worn on my legs in particular (the upper thighs can get really irritated from tight pants etc). I have a cotton slip for underneath sheer items of clothing (why is everything at the shops see through these days?) and I have ordered a whole bunch of cotton undies. I am currently researching mattress toppers made of bamboo or cotton, to try and improve my comfort when I sleep. I know the weather is only going to get more sweaty and hot with my baby due in February.

Beware a lot of ‘home’ remedies – there is no quick fix

Last time I was pregnant, I panicked and googled every remedy I could think of to soothe my PUPPP. I made the mistake of thinking there might be some magical cure out there. I bought every product ever mentioned and I probably confused the hell out of my skin. What works for some people might not work for others. In reality, the rash cannot ever just disappear (until you have the baby usually). You just have to manage it until it’s run its course.

Now I am more realistic. I won’t ever feel fully comfortable in my skin, but I can soothe it and I can calm myself psychologically which is honestly the most important thing to me right now.

For example, I had a freak out yesterday. I felt a bit manic and I wanted to cry. This made me feel more uncomfortable. I was a bit anxious because my inlaws were going to have the Little Mister for a couple of nights to enjoy some bonding time and give us (mostly me) a rest during the holidays. It was so kind of them and I was happy for everyone involved to do that, but the reality set in that I would have no positive distraction in the form of a loveable child who needs me to be strong. EEK.

I came home from dropping him off, to Mr Unprepared having heard the panic in my voice over the phone. He’d been to the pharmacy for advice (where he was lucky enough to get advice from my amazing mums’ group friend who is conveniently a great pharmacist), he’d run me a bath and lit some candles. He had a soothing Spotify playlist ready.

We threw some Pinetarsol wash in the bath and as soon as my body hit the water, I felt instant relief. I smelled like someone’s grandpa but it felt so good. I knew it wasn’t a cure this time around, so I just enjoyed it for what it was – as opposed to when I tried something similar last time and felt mad it didn’t fix everything. My skin felt smooth and clean afterwards. I tried to take that chilled feeling with me all the way to bed time. I slept better than I had in weeks.

Knowing people had my back and lowering my expectations really helped. You cannot underestimate the power of the mind in this situation. I know this well and learned a lot about this since my first pregnancy.

Keep busy – dress up and show up

It can be hard to find a balance between staying distracted and being a burnt out pregnant person, but I have found that if I keep moving, I can go a whole day without feeling itchy. To me, it’s important to dress up and show up. I isolated myself out of embarrassment and anxiety during my first pregnancy and I don’t know that it did me many favours. Of course I will also have to be mindful of my limits, but generally, having nice maternity clothes to wear, doing my make up, styling my hair, helps. I can’t let myself become scared to leave the house. I cannot sit around without distractions, feeling more depressed and itchy.

There’s nothing like a rash to make you feel very unattractive, very fast. Even looking at yourself in the mirror naked while you apply your rash cream can make you feel a bit confronted every night! My rash isn’t actually very visible outside of my every day clothing, but it can make you feel quite unsexy!!

Dressing up and showing up when I can makes me feel productive, empowered, less itchy, and more connected to the real world. Sitting at home thinking negative thoughts about my body does not help my mental health.

Have a mental health/self care plan

After last night’s little panic attack moment, I realised I need to be proactive so it doesn’t strike so badly next time. I started to think of things I can do next time I feel anxious enough to want to rip my skin off.

Things like:

  • take another bath if I am able to (because I have a kid who is still learning about privacy haha). If not, I can use the Pinetarsol or Calamine lotion on my skin before showering quickly to soothe myself.
  • Pick everything/everyone up and head to the beach (which is luckily right down the road) – don’t slow down to talk myself out of it. Get into the fresh air, see/feel the ocean (it’s my happy place). Distract distract distract!
  • Talk talk talk. Tell SOMEONE I am struggling. Even if it’s a stranger online in a support group.
  • Make a contingency plan to get more medical help if necessary. For example, if this isn’t better after trying all of the above, I will commit to making a doctor’s appointment ASAP and I will not put it off or make excuses. That way, I can feel a bit calmer knowing I will get help no matter what by a certain day/time. Even if it’s just making contact to say I’m not OK. Never isolate.

Have you ever had PUPPP? Did you have it more than once? What helped you? x

19 weeks pregnant.

And another week bites the dust!

I spent this week feeling stressed for non pregnancy related reasons, which was quite annoying. I felt really emotionally and physically drained, when I should have been feeling amazing. But I hope that next week will be a fresh start.

I am still getting used to calling my bump a ‘her’ or ‘she’. It sounds so foreign to me. I spent a long time calling the baby, ‘it’ haha. Probably shouldn’t do that anymore, considering there’s a creepy AF remake of the Stephen King movie out right now! Even saying the word ‘girl’ feels awkward. I guess that’s OK – I have a while to get my head around it! I am very excited but I think I am in a bit of shock. I never realised how used to the idea of having another boy I was. I just thought it would be an inevitability, quite honestly! I think maybe once my mum is around more and we can start planning fun stuff together, like decorating the nursery or going shopping for clothes together, I will start to feel more able to embrace the idea. I think maybe the stress I felt this week sadly overshadowed a time when I should have been adjusting to, and really celebrating, the good news a lot more.

This week, I also bought myself new bras. Up a cup size, y’all. Probably up two, but I got a good deal on bras from Big W so we’ll just go with that for now. Maybe I’m in denial haha. I think my next over the shoulder boulder holder purchases will probably be proper nursing bras, so I am holding off a little.

I had a doctor’s appointment this week. I was looking forward to it. Partly because I had some issues I wanted to ask about and address, and partly because it’s always a way to connect in some way to my pregnancy – I am always likely to have a scan or hear the heartbeat. It was good/important to have Mr Unprepared visit the clinic for the first time and meet the doctor. He’d taken a lot of time off work to get me through my fertility treatments and appointments and IVF, so making it to every appointment once I fell pregnant became a lot harder (although he hasn’t missed the important ultrasounds). I felt like he needed to connect with the process more and this was helpful, I think.

I had been worried about my itchiness (as mentioned in previous updates). I was finally able to show the doctor what my rash spots looked like. The bad news is that he agreed it could possibly be a re-emergence of the PUPPP rash that I’d suffered from during my first pregnancy, but the good news was that he was really knowledgeable, compassionate and pro-active about it. During my first pregnancy, I’d waited until it was really bad before telling anyone (it was embarrassing and it was my first pregnancy so I didn’t know what was normal), and then my previous doctor had been on leave (haha of course) and I’d had weeks of seeing random GPs who had no experience with the condition, and then I’d had to make my way up to the city for a dermatologist’s appointment, before finally getting help. By then everything had set in quite awfully and the mental and emotional damage had probably been done too.

This time was different. I was quick to mention my itchiness. The doctor was also quick to prescribe me some medicated cream and anti-histamines – all safe to take during pregnancy (please do not try these things without getting medical advice of your own). He explained that I am probably allergic in some way to my own pregnancy hormones/baby’s DNA. So that’s fun!

I immediately filled out the scripts and already felt better, mentally. It’s always nice to feel like you have support and a plan. So far the drugs seem to be working OK (not perfectly but OK). Some areas seem to have become 100% better and others are still a bit of a problem but haven’t got any worse. I will re-visit the clinic at about 24 weeks, just to check in and get any extra help if I need it. I am just glad that I am catching this condition earlier than last time. Maybe I can stop it from ever getting as bad as it was.

I cannot stress enough just how important it is to mention anything and everything when you see your care providers. If you’re uncomfortable in your skin or have an embarrassing issue, just listen to your gut and tell someone. The earlier you get help, the better it is for your mental health. Truly.

I’ve always thought I was huge (bump wise), although not as big as I thought I was when carrying the Little Mister, but I was surprised when the midwife measured my belly, to find out that its size was bang on between 19 and 20 weeks at the time of my appointment. While this can vary a lot in every woman and should probably largely be taken with a pinch of salt, I still felt a little relieved that maybe I wasn’t as massive as I originally thought (especially with my snacking being a bit out of control haha)! My mum reminded me that I was actually quite small (normal and healthy but small) when I was born – according to my adoption records and early photos. I felt relieved at the thought that maybe having a girl might mean she could take after me (Mr Unprepared was quite humongously big when he was born and while the Little Mister thankfully never reached that size it was close enough for my comfort levels I can tell you).

I was given instructions for further appointments and tests (I am not looking forward to finding out if I have gestational diabetes or not) and I was on my way. It felt good to fill out my calendar with exact dates for once (after the relative unpredictability of infertility).

I don’t know how to end this post, so here’s a picture of my bump at 19 weeks…

Until the next update, see ya later! x

Reasons I wanted to know my baby’s sex before birth.

I swear the number 1 question women get asked when we announce that we’re expecting is, “Are you going to find out if it’s a boy or a girl?”

I think that if I was to properly poll my parent friends to find out who found out ahead of their birth vs who chose to wait, it would probably be a 50/50 result.

It’s a personal decision and I think people choose one way or the other for a big variety of reasons. I can see advantages and disadvantages to both choices.

I decided to share my reasons to find out at our 19 week anatomy scan…

I wanted to be the first to know

I do not have the best track record with uneventful pregnancy or birth. While this time I am likely to have a scheduled C-section (and not ashamed one bit by the way), anything could happen! If for some reason I was rendered unconscious or had to be put under or some other kind of thing hindered my ability to witness my own birth experience (yes – a C-section is still a birth experience), I would not want to be the last to know. A friend once shared a story with me about this happening to her and it stuck with me. I am sure there are women out there who wouldn’t mind not knowing first, but for me that’s kind of important.

I figure it’s a surprise either way…

It always kind of amuses me when people say, “are you going to find out or are you going to wait for a surprise?”

Because in my mind, it’s a surprise whether you find out earlier or later! It’s also not like you can change it either – your child will have the body parts that they are destined to have!

I just like to know sooner rather than later, because quite frankly knowing that I can find out makes me impatient! I’m not good with not knowing stuff!

It makes shopping for baby clothes/nursery decor much more fun

While I am not a “please explode all the pink all over me” kind of person (in case you missed it we found out we’re expecting a girl this time) and I am quite a fan of unisex baby/children’s fashion (there is some frickin’ rad stuff out there these days), I do admit a part of me does buy into some stereotypes. I guess that’s OK because I am both a girly girl and a gender stereotype breaker all at once, myself. It’s OK to embrace both sides, I reckon!

Before I find out the possible gender, I kind of float aimlessly. Afterwards, I know that it’s half way through my pregnancy, I need to get my arse moving and I can mentally prepare. So I guess I find it to be a good motivation for the procrastinator in me too haha.

To prepare the Little Mister (5) who expressed a gender preference

The Little Mister was constantly reminding us about the order he put in for a baby sister. Before we found out, we were well aware that he still needed to grasp the concept that none of us would get to decide on this. That was up to a combination of Mr Unprepared’s genes and the clever lab person who picked out which fairly random embryo (out of a selection of 11) to implant in me.

I wanted to find out the sex ahead of time in case we did indeed have a little boy on the way. I knew there was a chance that the Little Mister might initially experience some disappointment. I wanted to give him time to realise that a brother could be just as awesome as a sister. I wanted to give him time to adjust his expectations and talk through his feelings on the matter.

Not to mention the nagging we experienced about whether it would be a boy or girl and when the hell would we find out, please?


For me, there was only one reason not to bother finding out and that was the fact that there is a difference between sex (the bits we’re born with) and gender. Having a baby with female parts does not guarantee gender identity. No amount of gender stereotypes means that we will have a child who shares the interests/preferences we hope they will have/not have. I can see the appeal in not buying into the blue vs pink thing. I know I’d have my child’s back, whoever they turned out to be, even if for now we assume them to be a ‘her’.

But, my reasons to find out overwhelmed my reason not to and here we are! I know I already love this little girl so much and will support her no matter what. For now I get to think about dressing her in embarrassing outfits and decorating her room however I want while I can get away with it haha. It was no different for her older brother! 😜

Tell me, do you like to find out the sex earlier or at birth? What are your reasons?

18 weeks pregnant.

During the 18th week of pregnancy, a lot of my thoughts turned to: OH HOLY SHIT. I AM ALMOST HALF WAY THROUGH THIS PREGNANCY ALREADY. I’VE DONE SHIT ALL TO GET READY FOR THIS BABY.

Very helpful thoughts, obviously.

Then I’d calm down and remind myself that I wanted to find out the sex of my baby first, before buying too much stuff or planning on how to decorate. Not that I am too fussed about the whole pink vs blue thing or the full on gender stereotypes (in fact I think that I can be a bit of a rebel), but it was a good way to procrastinate guilt free for a bit longer haha.

This week it really felt like my belly was streeeeetching and with that stretching came some itchiness in my stretchy areas. I also had some itching in the areas that can get a bit hot/humid. Arm pits, backs of my knees (weirdly), other less dignified creases. I’d happily not bring this up, because it can be embarrassing (and not very glam) but I didn’t talk about similar symptoms when I was pregnant with the Little Mister right away and I think it gave the itchiness too much power. Maybe I’m weird but I am a person who finds itchiness to be the worst psychological torture you can imagine (from a privileged first world point of view of course).

Gotta keep it real.

I’m probably not overreacting (much), because during my first pregnancy, I suffered from the PUPPP rash – most women get it from about 35 weeks pregnant and it lasts until they give birth. For me, it came at 20 weeks!! It’s a severe rash and it involved a panicked trip to a dermatologist (after suffering way too long because I had no idea what to do and neither did a lot of GPs I saw while my doc was on leave) who had to prescribe me a strong steroid cream because it was the only thing that would help. It was hell on earth.

Anyway, this severe rash had seemingly started with the itching symptoms I have described above, so I was paranoid for most of the week. I had to keep reminding myself that lots of women feel overheated or get dry, sensitive or stretchy skin when pregnant. It doesn’t have to eventuate into a big fuck off rash situation. It might, but it doesn’t automatically mean it will.

So I’m avoiding soap in the shower (no I do not stink – I use soap free lotions to clean myself) and using a light moisturiser on my problem areas. I’m also avoiding tight pants or jeans. Luckily, spring weather is arriving so this isn’t too hard to do. Wish me luck!

This week, Mr Unprepared felt his first kick from the outside of my belly. I find when the baby moves much lower down in my uterus, you can feel it more. It was a fleeting moment but a special one. I am sure there will be many more where that came from over the coming weeks!

One day shy of 19 weeks along, I had my anatomy scan. We had been very excited about this because we hoped to find out the sex of the baby (and I would have no choice but to face the fact that my procrastination period would be over haha). We went in and it was so awesome to see how the baby had grown so much since my 12 week scan. Seeing it move, hearing the heart beat, having the sonographer tell us everything was measuring beautifully and everything was looking healthy was fantastic. The baby was not very cooperative at times and really didn’t want to pose for photos or be easily nailed down (that’s a terrible use of words) for measurements of certain things and it freaked me out about future personality issues hahaha.

Eventually, we heard the words…

“I can tell you that you are definitely having a little girl.”

Neither Mr Unprepared or I could hide our shock or our excitement. I had secretly hoped that one day we’d have one of each, but it just didn’t seem like it could happen (I mean I know scientifically it can but I just didn’t think it could happen to us). I’d been ready to love and embrace another boy because we had been through so much that any healthy baby would be more than enough – preferring a gender just seemed greedy. Not that a baby won’t be whoever they are as they grow up (regardless of their body parts), but I guess I did appreciate my brother and I being ‘one of each’ and I was happily a breaker of stereotypes anyhow – still am. The Little Mister had expressed this desire quite openly. He wanted our family to have a boy and a girl. A brother and a sister. I was overjoyed for him (and relieved we weren’t going to have to work through any disappointments with him).

We whooped a bit and looked at each other like, WOW. THIS IS AMAZING. WHO WOULD HAVE THOUGHT.

We told our loved ones right away and everyone was so excited. There are so many males in both our families that everyone is excited each time a girl gets added to the mix (things are slowly evening up)!

We are over the moon and I still can’t believe I will have a girl! I can’t believe my husband will have a girl! This will be so good for him haha. I think he will be smitten. I think he already is!

We went to lunch to celebrate (I had a fancy mocktail) and before we knew it we were talking names and giggling over the bad ideas we found in our new baby names book!

We told the Little Mister on the way home from school and his face lit up. He exclaimed, “YAY!” and told us that he was more excited than when we told him I’m pregnant. It was very sweet.

What have you been up to this week? Would you want to find out the gender ahead of your baby’s birth? 

17 weeks pregnant.

Yo! Here’s my 17 week update…I’m crap at thinking up a really smooth pre-amble so I’m just going to jump into it and let you know how my week has been!

Celebrity baby news…

Yep. We all heard about our good mate Kate and her baby news. I have decided that our babies will be besties. I’m pregnant at the same time as royalty, so that’s nice haha. I have to say that when I read that she is suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum for the THIRD TIME, it made me feel really grateful that I have not had to experience anything like that. Imagining a princess (or Lady anyhow – I don’t know how it works) looking wrecked AF, head over the toilet bowl, really weirdly makes me love her more. Weird pregnancy bullshit does not discriminate, y’all.

There’s a Kardashian West baby rumoured to be due in January. I guess it’s time to let you in on something. I am carrying Kim and Kanye’s baby. I know. Please. No media.

Little Mister has been working it to his advantage…

This week, the Little Mister realised that if he told strangers that I have a baby in my tummy, they thought it was the cutest, sweetest, funniest thing ever. So he played up to it as much as possible.

“Hi, my name is *Little Mister* and my mummy has a baby in her tummy.”

Everywhere we went.

All the “oohs and aahs” and “I bet you’ll be a great big brother”s really made him happy haha. Shout out to all the staff at the local IGA – thanks for sharing in our news 😂😂😂

Cravings…

I had a real hankering for anything peanut butter related. Whether it was in ice cream or a slice or whatever, I was wanting it. I’ve enjoyed peanut butter before, but I have probably never raved about it. In fact, I thought it was kind of an overrated flavour and couldn’t really understand the fuss. I mean, I loved it as a spread on apple slices when trying to be healthy, but that was the extent of it. Now I feel like I get it. I really really do.

Forgetting I am pregnant…

I think I had a pretty good week. At times I was able to forget for a few hours at a time that I was even pregnant. I didn’t feel huge and I could get through the day with relative ease. Occasionally, I would have to run my hand over my belly to remind myself! I swear that at the same stage of pregnancy with the Little Mister 6 years ago, I felt more pregnant than that.

Is it a boy or girl?

That’s been the most frequently asked question lately! Basically, we have decided we want to find out at our 19 week scan. I keep asking myself why it’s important to find out – I’m not that rigid on gender stereotypes – but I really do want to know!! I honestly have no gut feeling about what this baby might be. All I know is that I will be happy either way. It would be cool to have a girl (even things up a little in my house), but I have an AMAZING little boy who I have enjoyed immensely so another one would definitely be lovely.

Do you like to find out before the baby is born or do you like to wait?

16 weeks pregnant.

At 16 weeks, the baby was the size of an avocado. Yum!

This week, I started to feel some little movements! I felt little movements at 16 weeks when I was pregnant with the Little Mister, so it was nice to have it happen so soon again! At first I wasn’t sure, expecting some of it to be indigestion or something. Trust me, I thought I felt a lot of things going on in there while we were trying so hard for a baby (not kicking or anything obviously but tugs and pains that I hoped were a sign of early pregnancy) and I was always wrong. I am not one to jump to conclusions these days!

A couple of times I sneezed (fact: I sneeze with gusto) and right after, I would feel a couple of suspiciously timed little jabs like the baby was all, “WTF WAS THAT, MUM?”

Another time, we were eating lunch out with friends and I hadn’t really had much for breakfast beforehand. The moment I started to munch on my meal, I felt little flippy, movey feelings! Since then, I have had occasional feelings of movement when I’m still and now I’m really impatient for them to become pronounced enough that Mr Unprepared and the Little Mister might be able to feel them. In saying that, it’s probably a good thing there’s a while until then…I remember how I felt last time at that point haha.

I was really excited because I was able to get out and about in my favourite dress. The one with a cool tiger on the chest and a flowy black skirt. The bad ass dress that I was too scared to wear when I wasn’t pregnant in case it made me look pregnant. Hilariously, when I put it on I realised it made me look NOT pregnant and I was all, you mean I could have worn this all along?!

This week I did a big clean out of my wardrobe. I put aside all of the things I am now too round to wear and I tried on literally every other thing so I could see what outfits I could create from my existing non-maternity wardrobe. I was pleasantly surprised by a few things (and unpleasantly surprised by a lot of other things haha). Now I know how everything will look/fit and that makes life a lot easier. Before that, I was doing trial and error last minute before going anywhere and it was getting a bit time consuming and tiresome!

Also of note: my stretch marks from my last pregnancy decided to reinvent themselves. Back from the dead, a little more dangerous looking and ready to cause trouble. Much like Taylor Swift. LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. I’ve been moisturising a bit and praying I will never have a repeat of the rash from hell of 2011.

The Little Mister has suggested some baby names already. So far we have Little Mister Junior, Tim (random) and Pat because he wants the baby to grow up to be a postman. I’m thinking that maybe when we do start to think seriously about names, we might need to create a shortlist first before handing over any input!!

Also, on the topic of the Little Mister – he got his first wobbly tooth this week! Maybe it’s not pregnancy related, but damn it’s awesome and he’s growing up so much and I love him so!