Monday, 17 March 2014

If it looks like a baby...

The end of last week was a bit of a mixed bag of emotions for me. Thursday night I spent mainly in tears for various reasons:

- being pregnant in general. I hear pregnant ladies do the crying thing a lot
- being totally detached from the pregnancy as from so many things
- wanting but not being able to buy a baby blanket because I'm convinced that something will go wrong and I'll have to get rid of anything I buy
- not knowing where we'll be living after May when our lease runs out
- feeling desperately homesick
- knowing that this is not the right time to be applying for new jobs in Europe because I can't promise to only take 3 months maternity leave then hot foot it back to work
- knowing that we can't really leave until husband finishes his MBA because we can't afford international fees in Europe, and that could be 18 months away
- feeling trapped by last 2 points
- worrying about having a single income
- did I mention homesick?
- worrying that even if we do go "home" I'll feel like a foreigner and miss the beauty here
- feeling sick because we don't have a plan or anything solid to stand on... this usually makes me feel free, like we could just go anywhere and do anything

Now, for the first time, I really want to own a house. It will make HN1 feel more secure, and it will be somewhere of our own where I can paint skies on the ceiling and rainbows in the bathroom, and we can dig up half the garden to grow vegetables. We can't do that here though, because here isn't permanent. Here is temporary, and since we haven't decided where here leads to, here is limbo.

Anyway, I emailed my mother, feeling and probably sounding hopeless, and she (of course) called me straight away from Chile (don't ask). We talked for a bit then I crashed on the couch until HN1 got home from uni. We got up super early and drank a lot of water (well, I did) on Friday morning for the NT scan. The two ultrasound ladies were very nice at this place - different clinic this time - and we were actually in there for a lot longer than previous scans having a good look at the baby and making sure everything was in the right place. It is, in case you were wondering. Arms, legs, fingers, toes, a button nose (although it looks big like HN1's in one picture)... Amazing really that it's the size of a kiwi fruit but everything is already fully formed. The heart is beating, and the stomach and bladder are visible which apparently show respectively that it's swallowing and that the kidneys are working. 

It's actually super cute. 

Still, I can't reconcile the images on the screen with the thing that I know but don't feel is growing in me. Of course, it's a relief that everything looks good and healthy, and there are things I can stop stressing about for the time being. It's growing (measured 12w6d on Friday), it's bouncing around like a jumping bean, the main bits are all in the right place, and the nuchal fold measurement is good (1.4mm, should be below 2mm I think) which was the point of the scan.

My GP texed me on Saturday night to say that the blood test and scan results were "favorable" and that I am "low risk" for Downs. He perhaps needs to get out more but it was very cute of him to text as soon as he had the results. 

I sent pictures from the scan to both of our families, and we told the two guys I used to live with and my god father. Still not told more than a handful of our friends here, and really want to keep it away from Facebook. I'm not sure why I don't want people to know, I just don't. I'm sure at some stage it will be obvious and we'll be outed my my tummy, but I dread actually telling people even though it's really happy news for us and was planned and wanted. Everyone's different I suppose, some people shout it from the rooftops as soon as they have 2 lines on a stick. We'll just see how it goes I think.

Telling work is another kettle of fish. Part of me doesn't want to say anything until I have to give notice that I'm going on maternity leave - I'll be 8 months pregnant then and it will be fully obvious - because they don't care about their staff and I don't owe them anything. Also because if I tell them now then they definitely won't seek permanent residency for me (which they are supposed to be doing at the moment but, like everything around here, it's taking months to get approvals), and to go with the big fat zero I receive from work, I definitely won't receive any government maternity pay. Even if the approvals go through this week I probably won't get PR in time to claim anything, WHICH IS WHY I STARTED THIS PROCESS MONTHS AGO. So we would have time. It's infuriating.

I'm expecting calls today about jobs, but I don't think I'll go ahead with any applications at the moment, which makes me feel a bit sad and a bit trapped. I'll start a countdown until I can leave this company that doesn't give a shit about anyone, that will make me feel a little better I hope... 5.5 months and counting!

Just going to keep reminding myself how fortunate we are. We have each other and a baby coming. We have a home and even if that changes in a couple of months, we will find another home to go to. We have food and clothes and warmth and enough money to up sticks should we need to. We have the option of going back to the UK to live with my mum for a bit, or even to NZ to live with his. We have jobs and income. We have so much freedom. We have a lot more than so many people, and I need to have a bit of perspective when I collapse into a useless heap stressing about everything.  

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