I kind of always thought that pregnant women who expressed repulsion at the thought of vegetables were maybe, possibly, just a little bit exaggerating. How can a capsicum make you want to cry, yet a bag of potato chips bring indescribable joy? I just didn’t get it.
Well, for the past couple of months, the thought of zucchini has made me want to barf. I get it. I’m there. I’m pregnant. Now where the heck are my french fries?
It’s so fabulously clichéd, this whole food aversion thing. I should have known that positive pregnancy test was coming. One Friday night in early January, Ben and I were headed to the city for a friend’s birthday party. That whole week I had felt vaguely blah, enough to prompt a “couch day” the previous day, but not enough to cancel on seeing my friends and not enough to stop me eating salad for lunch, as is my usual style. Anyway, that car trip was a bit of a giveaway, on reflection. As I drove, Ben worked on his laptop and I blessed him with a monologue detailing ALL of the foods I felt like eating IMMEDIATELY. From pasta bake with bolognaise, with a high ratio of oven crisped pasta, for which we’d need a wide, shallow pan (I was already planning dinner the following night), to a BLT (which I’ve never even eaten before), to a burger…the ultimate burger. Yes, I’ve thought a lot about burgers recently. The burger of my present, pregnant dreams is a thick, juicy, all-beef pattie, covered in melted cheese (a gouda, perhaps), with pickles and some sort of crisp green (because if it were smothered in beef juice I can get behind a bit of veg). I’d like a sharp and cheap tomato sauce (some mustard too, why not?) and a bun that is neither too plain nor too sweet and briochy, and certainly not too thick – it’s all about the pattie. Whoa, baby. A month later I made that burger. And it was freakin perfect.
So, I just announced that Ben and I are expecting a little burger at the start of September and all I have really spoken about is food. Go figure. I mean, this is a food diary, so you’d expect nothing less. But the thing is, my food world has changed so dramatically since the start of the year. Food makes me feel my worst and my best. It’s bizarre. The fact that my work and hobbies revolve around food and cooking makes things a little tricky, and I’ve found myself pulling a Puddy more often than I’d like to admit. I feel as though it has been rather obvious I am pregnant from my pictures on Instagram. There’s been significantly less vibrant salads and significantly more potato, pasta, cheese and biscuits and bread (plus more pasta, more bread and more potato). Some savvy folk guessed I was pregnant before I told them, one being my friend who also happens to be pregnant and due one week before me! How rad is that? The two of us have always shared a deep affection for Grill’d burgers and chips, and this has only grown these past few months. It’s pretty special to have someone who so severely and presently understands your desire for potatoes. So even though these days you’ll find me watching Jane Eyre instead of Nigella Lawson, I clearly still have a lot to say about food.
But there are other things I want to talk about too. Like how we got here. Ben and I were actively trying to get pregnant, so it wasn’t a big surprise when it was confirmed… but then again it was. I had a lot of trouble getting my hormones to good lady levels after coming off the pill 2 years ago. 2 years without menstruating, despite having a healthy diet and lifestyle, putting on weight, trying acupuncture (albeit only a few sessions) and meditation, and having blood tests and ultrasounds to make sure I was healthy (which I am, there was nothing wrong besides my brain not letting me ovulate), well, it leaves you questioning whether you’ll actually be able to have children. It made Ben and I realise how much we did want children of our own. Adoption was always a happy alternative, but I also knew I really wanted to experience this beautiful pregnancy business for myself. So I got some help from a medication called Clomid, which some ladies need to help them ovulate (Clomid doesn’t help you get pregnant, as such, rather it works to make you ovulate. After that you’re on your own). It worked for me like an absolute charm, and one month after the first round of meds Ben and I did a home pregnancy test.
It was a Sunday morning. The day before we’d spent time with our niece and nephew who were over from Hong Kong. For breakfast I’d had what would be my last coffee to date and devoured a croissant, before kicking the football outside with the kids and pretending it wouldn’t be months between visits. That night Ben and I made the aforementioned pasta bake and I went to bed with a stomach full of butterflies, as I knew in the morning I’d be taking a pregnancy test.
I woke buzzing, so ready to go! But it was suspiciously dark out, so I looked at the clock…it was 3am.Darn it. I considered waking Ben but somehow managed to snooze for a while… then at 6am felt somewhat less bad about disturbing his sleep, so shouted to the poor fellow, “I have to pee! It’s time to test!”. Deep breath. We had waited a while for this, a week longer than perhaps necessary, because I didn’t want the test to be negative. I wasn’t sure how I’d handle that. I’d like to think I would have handled it with an “Oh well, onto the next lot of Clomid. It’s common to need a few rounds, that’s ok!”, but I had a feeling I wouldn’t be quite that graceful, so thought it best to wait and try to not think about it (I’m good at that game). But here we were, about to test, nowhere to hide. Deep breath. I did my thing and handed the Clear Blue stick to Ben. We spoke about something for a moment, Ben trying to distract us, but after 30 seconds he snuck a peek… “There’s something there.” On the test we saw a Days of Our Lives hourglass flashing to the left, and next to it, the word “Pregnant”.
I sprinted into the bedroom and dove head first under the covers, repeating “oh my God, oh my God”, while Ben waited in the bathroom until the sand stopped falling through the hourglass. After a couple of minutes, Ben brought the pregnancy test into the bedroom with a big smile on his face.
And here we are, at 13 weeks, feeling beyond blessed and tying my pants together with a rubber band.
I’ll be back with more posts later on. Sorry/not sorry that there will be a lot of pregnancy and baby talk over here. I think you’ll appreciate the burgers and I promise to not solely talk about pasta. I just have a lot to say, and you all know by now that I am an over-sharer. Really, it’s all in the hope that someone will knock on my door with a bag of fries and some ginger beer. We can watch BBC Jane Austen adaptations whilst eating potatoes and not talking about zucchini. It’ll be great.
Here are some pictures from our second scan last Tuesday, at 12 weeks, outside the clinic. It really hit us at this point, after seeing bub hanging out in my belly…this is legit. We are elated.