My Pregnancy in a Peanut Shell
By: Emily L
My husband, Ben, and I started taking pre-conception pills the last 2 weeks in August of 2018 and I stopped taking my birth control pills.
“I am ovulating on September 14th, we will start trying then!” I yell from the living room, while I am counting the days on my calendar.
We were so excited!
September 14th, 2019: ovulation day!
“I am really nervous, what happens if it works on the first try?! Are we really ready for this?!” I say with an excited look of nervousness to my husband.
“Yes! This is something we have talked about, and something we both really want. Sure it can happen on the first try, but we have to understand that it also may take some time,” my husband calmly says to me, in some words or another.
September 27th: the day we found out about our little bean! We made it happen on the first try! ON THE FIRST TRY!
We were beyond excited, we were nervous, we were beyond over the moon happy, we finally felt like we were on the right track to begin our family. It was all very clear that this was meant to be right now in our lives. We began looking at all things baby related. Looking up pregnancy tips, reading all the books, looking for the best of the best materials. Was it too early? Should we wait? We can’t be this excited yet, what if something happens?! We need to wait until our ultrasound…but it’s ok, because right now, we were pregnant.
A few weeks later, we found out that our due date was June 8th. We were SO excited throughout our pregnancy! We “felt” like it was a girl. I felt like the baby was a girl. Was it because we both wanted a girl as our first? We instantly knew a name, we knew that we both wanted, Aurora, for a girl. We loved the Aurora Borealis, we haven ever been, but just loved everything about it. We also are HUGE Disney fans, and loved how different Aurora was. We didn’t tell anyone of our name choice because, “oh you will change your mind when she is here.” (One of the many pieces of “advice” we were given.)
November 30th: “I don’t have any cravings or weird food aversions…but I can only eat these foods all together.” Check out my smorgasbord!
The further I was getting into pregnancy, the more “real” it was starting to feel. I had morning sickness, but it was at night. This was great because I was able to work just fine during the day, relax in the bathtub at night and go to sleep when my nausea kicked in. I had lost 5 pounds due to nausea and not feeling hungry, and solely living off of saltines for dinner. (Side note: I never ONCE vomited during my pregnancy, it was so strange and not what I was expecting. )
HAPPY NEW YEAR 2019!
Our last New Year’s Eve just the two of us!
January 17th: the sex reveal ultrasound
We knew that we wanted to find out from the start of our pregnancy, because we had that hunch that it was a girl. We knew we would love our son or daughter no matter which sex they ended up being, and if they decide that one day that isn’t what they want, we are still going to love them regardless.
I say “our” and “we” because this pregnancy was just as much my husband’s as it was just the
baby and I.
“Don’t you mean your BABY’S due date?”
“YOU are carrying your daughter, not your husband.”
“This process is what YOU are physically going through.”
“He doesn’t understand what you are going through.”
“I hope he is doing everything at home, because you can’t.”
“He doesn’t fully understand what you are going through.”
Just a few of the things that I got when I phrased my sentences with “our” or “we.” You are right; he wasn’t carrying our child physically. BUT, he was working two jobs so we could save money for when the baby arrived because I was granted UNPAID leave. UNPAID. While working two jobs, he would come home to do all of the housework; the cleaning, the laundry, the dishes, taking out the trash, make dinner (yes he is the cook of the household), all while having to assist his pregnant wife. Because, that’s what he is supposed to do, right?
“I hope he is doing things at home, as he should be,” the midwife would say in reply to anything we discussed during prenatal appointments.
“I am a feminist, in case you didn’t know,” the midwife said at our 24th week appointment, as she only looked me in the eyes to say it, ignoring my husband’s presence.
The appointments my husband came to and sat idly by, as he was talked about like he didn’t exist, from the midwives.
He attended EVERY appointment. EVERY appointment he brought questions. EVERY appointment he would leave work, no matter how long the appointment would be, and not complain. He supported the process because this is something we wanted for a long time.
Here is my husband and I at our childbirth class, which he WANTED to attend to learn as much as possible to raise our daughter.
Living through the pregnancy process during a time when “males/men” are looked at negatively as a whole, was challenging. All of those “Miss Independent” ladies would come out of the wood cracks and speak their minds, only to not include my husband during MY pregnancy stories, in a positive way.
I got to a point in the pregnancy where I REQUIRED my husband’s assistance. I did absolutely depend on him the last trimester, especially after I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes on March 22nd. I struggled very hard with this diagnosis, only because we had been having an amazing pregnancy. So, I needed him. Not because I couldn’t do it myself, but I needed him for his loving support because I was too “blue” to pull myself up to do it myself. I needed the encouragement and support from him to help me through that change. To not feel like I failed my baby, my husband, and my own worst enemy, myself.
We worked together to make the 3rd trimester a breeze. Considering I am not generally a candy, dessert, or sweets of any kind type of person, the whole “NO” thing, made me want it even more. This added challenges to the final countdown, when all I cared about at times, was how delicious that brownie would taste following an ice cream M&M cookie sandwich, while eating some jujyfruits. At first, it was easy to switch up my diet, there wasn’t much to eliminate that was “horrible.” I was told that anyone no matter how big or small their bodies were, could get gestational diabetes. Since I didn’t have diabetes prior to the pregnancy, but was overweight, and didn’t want that to be the main focus of the diagnosis. I got depressed and it was challenging to enjoy the rest of my pregnancy without the constant worry.
I was recommended to go to a nutritionist, but it was basically mandatory for the first time so I could get a basis of foods to use as a resource.
The nutritionist said, “Well with your weight, gestational diabetes was probably to be expected.”
Call me sensitive or a pregnant monster, but I instantly shutdown and started snapping back at everything she said, in a rude and snippy way. How could you say that my weight was to blame, when it is common for any pregnant person? I had lost weight throughout my pregnancy and had only gained 3 pounds! What is going on?! Now, I felt like the last few weeks were going to be worse than I thought, as I watched her cross off all things delicious with a bright red sharpie as if I failed a spelling test in the 3rd grade. She told me I needed
However, this delicious strawberry poppyseed salad was exactly a perfect divide to a sweet and healthy treat that kept my numbers in great shape!
Our Baby Girl’s Baby Shower/Name Reveal!
My husband and I have always loved the Aurora Borealis, the northern lights. We always watch the live feeds of the Aurora Borealis and always say, “Someday we will go see them live.” We have never seen it in person, but we just love its natural beauty! We are also BIG Disney fans, and love Aurora as Sleeping Beauty. When we found out that our little bean was a girl, there was no doubt in our minds that Aurora was going to be her name, Rory for short. It was a name no one we knew had, and it wasn’t widely popular on the “Most popular name,” lists.
We chose her middle name, “Leigh,” after my sister’s middle name.
Our baby shower was held on Saturday, April 6th at my parent’s condo. It was well attended with my closest family and friends and it was storybook themed. I am a Children’s Librarian, so it was only fitting.
After the baby shower, things went by quickly. Before we knew it, we were having our last ultrasound. The last ultrasound to determine her size and make sure everything was going well. Below is a pic of our chunky-cheeked little bean! If you tilt your head to the right, you can see her looking right at you! It was so crazy!
Our little Rory Bean was measuring at 6.5 pounds! We still had a little was to go, and if she continued to measure ½ pound a week until her due date, she would be 9 pounds. NINE POUNDS! WHAT?!
The ultrasound tech shrugged her shoulders and said, “She could be give or take one or two pounds from that.” All I could think about was trying to control my sassy eye roll and lip pout out loud.
Since she was measuring large, the midwife thought it was best to do weekly non-stress tests, to be sure she was doing alright in there with her growth and wasn’t getting too squished. It was scary at first, being hooked up to machines and laying in a hospital bed watching the lines jump up and down with a beeping noise. Then suddenly I heard her heartbeating loud through the speakers. When she moved, I could hear her over the machine squirming to the other side of my belly. It was magical to hear her heartbeat for the 20 minute non-stress test, and everything turned out just fine.
Days flew by and the weeks were coming to a close, the non-stress tests were going great and the baby was doing fantastic. My husband and I decided to do an impromptu maternity photoshoot, with our own camera and tripod. Here are two of my favorites!
My last duty of pregnancy was to schedule a pedicure, so I was “delivery room ready.”
Our last appointment was on June 6th, with our due date being on Saturday, June 8th. We were told that I wasn’t very dilated, but they didn’t want me to go too much past my due date. At the end of that appointment, I was scheduled to be induced that Monday, June 10th! The look on my husbands face was hilarious and I wish I got a video of it! But by the feeling of a skip in my heartbeat of excitement, made me realize that mine probably looked similar.
Saturday, June 8th: DUE DATE!
We can’t wait to meet our little Rory Bean!
Monday, June 10th: Induction Day!
Our pregnancy journey was filled with so many exciting moments. As we were walking into the hospital for induction, I thought back to all of the key moments of our pregnancy. The highlights of the good and what we thought was “bad” at the time. It was all an experience to remember and in the moment there were times of worry that took away from the experience. Though those worries are inevitable for any soon-to-be mom, whether it is your first time or your 5th time, there will always be some worry. Please try to relax and enjoy each and every moment. It is a magical time that everyone should experience fully.
Emily is a wash-a-shore on Martha's Vineyard. After many years of vacationing on Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard as a child, Emily met her husband in college who was born and raised on Martha's Vineyard. Small world! Right before getting married, Emily and her husband relocated to Martha's Vineyard to settle down and start a family. They are new first time parents to their daughter, Aurora and cat parents to their gray and black tiger cat, Baby T.
Emily is a Children's Librarian on the island, as well as a kid's mindfulness and yoga instructor, and a former teacher. Being a life long and continuing learner, reading, being thrifty, crafty and fun is her specialty! Emily is always looking for new events and programs to get her and her family involved in the community. She started an advice and experience instagram page, called spillthebeansmom, at the end of her pregnancy to help use as an outlet to reach other moms and listen to what moms had to say based off of their experiences.
Cape Cod Moms