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Bump to Baby Lifestyle Parenting

D Day – Welcome to the world!

It’s strange knowing in advance the “likely” date of your child’s birthday. I had two scenarios in my mind nearing the final trimester, either the Obstetric Cholestasis (OC) would return and he would be shipped out sometime after 37 weeks or I’d make it to the allocated 39 week deadline date for scheduled sections. Frustratingly I wouldn’t find out until around week 36 when I was diagnosed with OC again and thus given the date, this time exactly 38 weeks on the dot.

January the 12th 2018 was to be the day and I just had to make it to that date, which was not an easy feat. The OC really gave me a terrible ride towards the end, I felt very unwell and was on a fine tuned balance of medication to keep my liver functioning but also me feeling well enough to get around. Last time I only had a day or so from diagnosis to induction date, it was only eleven days this time around but it felt like an absolute eternity. When I wasn’t taking medication I felt so tired, my eyes were yellow and I looked like a person whose liver wasn’t working so well. On the medication I was constantly nauseated, had huge amounts of acid that had to be countered with another strong acid reducing medication. Acid was just overrunning my body completely it was hard to imagine that it was a health environment in which to keep a baby in.

The night before was very odd, it was hard to sleep knowing that I had such a big day ahead and I had medication for my surgery to take as a precaution before going nil by mouth. I wasn’t particularly worried about being too hungry as I had a morning list spot for the surgery and arrived in pretty high spirits on the ward. It was rather odd to be placed on the delivery ward, sitting in a bed which is design for ladies to give birth in and I had never visited before with either of my births. I never toured the hospital, the only experience I have is the pre assessment/induction suites, recovery bays and birthing centre that I checked out in my last pregnancy. We waited around for a few hours while meeting the various staff that would be performing the surgery, the ward had a few emergencies that took priority and then I ended up being bumped down the list so they could repeat bloods. It was getting very much late in the day and I hadn’t eaten since dinner time the previous evening, eventually a midwife appeared to give me some IV fluids as it had been such a long time. Four failed attempts to get a line in due to me now being very dehydrated and suddenly the surgical team arrived to say I was going down now for my section.

Off we walked, to theatre which was rather different to last time in which I was wheeled in a huge panic.  The anaesthetist managed to get my cannula in straight away by digging an almighty hole in my hand, thankfully giving me something to numb the area first by injection. I’m pretty sure that will remain a scar forever but now I have matching ones each side. It was a much more relaxed affair, there was radio playing in the background and everyone seemed rather chirpy than stressed. Because of this I feel it felt longer, things really took a long time. The spinal was in soon enough and I was quickly moved into position, it’s a strange feeling – your legs becoming tingly and eventually when they come to spray them with a cold spray you cannot feel anything at all. After the procedure it is the oddest thing ever watching someone lift legs that do not feel like they are attached to your body.

Before long the surgery was underway, a little pressure cuff was inflating every minute or so on my arm just like last time. All my obs were carefully being monitored and soon enough they lowered the sheet of fabric down. The consultant doing my section was a big advocate of the gentle approach to C sections. This time once the incision had been made they gently pushed on the top section of my bump to help ease the baby out. It was rather amazing to watching him come out whereas last time Ariella was just presented to us over the fabric divide, on this occasion he was still curled up in the position he had been in the womb and covered head to toe in vernix. My first thought was that he was much smaller than his sister and that I was surprised by this. Previous scans had shown he was on the bigger side, maybe if he had made it to 40 weeks that would have been the case.

Rather than being whisked away he was put on me and later was checked by the team next to us on a small table while everything was stitched up and I was soon sent off to the recovery bay before moving onto our suite in the postnatal ward. Everything from the music, to the more relaxed staff, the natural gentle approach to the section and the nicer postnatal period afterward was brilliant.
We had prebooked a suite after my stay last pregnancy on the noisy inner city London ward, in which my baby slept but I didn’t sleep because of other babies crying. This time around it was mostly quiet and although I didn’t sleep much it was because I kept looking at Sebastian!

The next day I was up and moving around, in no real pain and ready to go home. I had my medication and once discharged we headed back home to greet Ariella, it was overall a really positive experience the only negative being the amount of time I spent nil by mouth. After a really stressful end of pregnancy with Obstetric Cholestasis it was fantastic to have him arrive safely and be able to go home so soon.







Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Thirty Seven Weeks, Thirty Eight Weeks – D Day

37 weeks

37 Week Bump

Deviating from the standard format of my bump update posts. In my last bump update I mentioned that I had just found out that I indeed had Obstetric cholestasis (OC) again. I had always prepared myself mentally for the possibility of having it, it has a 60 – 90% reoccurrence rate and I had been undergoing weekly bloods and CTG monitoring to check my levels at the hospital. Luckily I was able to schedule this in during nursery days as some of the stays on the assessment unit would take 6 – 8 hours to complete. On top of this I had been in and out due to regular contractions twice which stopped of their own accord, it really felt like I had been in hospital more than out of it.

Once I was diagnosed I expected to be looking at a planned c-section anytime between 37 weeks (seven days notice) or 38 weeks. I knew that it was unlikely that I would go beyond 38 weeks, which cut my planning time down to a week or so, as I saw the consultant around 36+5 days. The final two weeks were absolutely horrible, my body really struggled to cope with the liver condition. I felt the effects of the liver struggling, I know my liver tests weren’t looking pretty either.

I was drained, I lacked any form of appetite, I looked like I’d be up all night as my whites of my eyes were really dull and before I started my medication looking yellow. The medication given to me made my liver a little better but made me sick, by the last few days I was in and out of hospital as I was vomiting, unable to eat and felt really unwell. As a result of this I was given an anti acid to keep the balance of my medication in check which really helped.

Knowing the date of my section was perfect, this time around it felt very planned – my parents were called over to stay and I was able to take the bump photo above the day before. This is the very last photo I have of me pregnant!

Birth story to follow next!

34 Weeks < – > To be released


Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to baby #2 – Thirty four/Thirty five/Thirty six weeks

34 weeks

34 Week Bump

Top moment the week? – I’m not sure these weeks had a top moment, I spent the last few weeks very itchy and with weekly monitoring/bloods to check for Obstetric cholestasis. Last pregnancy I was diagnosed late, bloods were done before but for whatever reason my bile acid level which is what they look for to diagnose OC did not rise until around 35/36 weeks. Like clockwork they began to rise again, I received a phone call in the evening of the 35 week to tell me. I would have to say therefore the top moment of these weeks would have been Christmas, although everyone in the house was sick, our guests were sick. I’m not sure the final weeks of December fall into the top, but alas they came and went. Once I was diagnosed with OC I knew the current plan of a planned C-section at 39 weeks was unlikely and that as before they would want to bring this forward. Perhaps the top moment was seeing my consultant week 36 who confirmed indeed that the plan was to evict at 38 weeks exactly, two shots of steroids to endure first and a bunch of medication to take for the duration.

Stretch marks – Yes unfortunately I now I do have new ones above my belly button. Not a lot so I’ve been very lucky!

Sleep – Not so good, you really are just too big at this point. I’m rather glad these are likely to be my last few weeks now. When I do get to sleep I am completely out though, the liver condition really knocks your energy levels.

Maternity Clothes – In preparation to get my hospital bag sorted, I’ve ordered a few nursing pieces of clothing which also happen to be maternity wear. Rather frustrating that brands and designers lump the two together, everything will look quite baggy post pregnancy.

Food Cravings – Zero appetite, another symptom of OC which I remember from last time. I knew it was creeping up purely from this and my energy levels, by the very end before I was given medication my eyes had started to go yellow with jaundice too.

What do you miss – I miss sleeping on my bag still, I also miss being able to walk around with too much thought, walking now is uncomfortable.

Movement – I had a case of reduced movements week 36, around the time that I had steroid shots which I think had an impact. I felt seriously buzzed after the shots though, glad they were not given to me at night and instead I had them during the day time.

Symptoms – Heavy, tired, itchy,

What are you looking forward to – D Day, I feel oddly unprepared though – but I’ll be glad to no longer be pregnant and look forward to meeting the little guy!

33 Weeks < – > To be released


Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Thirty One/Two/Three Weeks

31 weeks

The “thirties” feel quick, I don’t really remember it feeling as quick last time – perhaps because these weeks were somewhat separated by antenatal classes rather than the general run up to Christmas. Which I must admit has been a perfect way to distract myself, it’s always great to have a project and this year we are staying at home so for once I can really decorate with appreciation.

I can’t imagine I will have as much time next year to decide on wrapping, ribbon and which card I fancy sending out. Sometimes I remember the pre baby days where I put a lot of thought into which Christmas chocolates were going on the tree that year, those days are far gone and while I’ll still look for nice things I don’t have the same mental appreciation for that level of detail. So like magic, here we are fast forwarding a few weeks squeezed into one post – really all I do is grow a little bit bigger each week!

31 Week Bump

32 Week Bump

33 Week Bump

Top moment the week? – The last couple of weeks have really not had much to speak of which is why they are combined, at the moment the midwife appointments are springing up fast. I’ve spent quite a bit of time at the hospital too having my bloods checked weekly due to itching again. I suppose I’m glad that I was able to attend the Christmas light switch on weekend we have locally, I don’t feel too big just yet and walking is still comfortable. I had another scan also which was nice, although not 3D as they are happy as they can be with this babies development.

Stretch marks – I’m starting to get a few just above my belly button, I suppose it will match the ones below. Really not bothered at all about them this time, they disappear soon enough that you don’t really notice them! I think it’s actually worse post birth as they look so angry! but it calms down and they fade in time.

Sleep – Still sleeping well, going to enjoy the last few weeks of sleeping through the night it will be strange to go back to the constant wake ups but it’s such a short time in their lives – we will get through it! Fingers crossed this one is also a sleeper.

Maternity Clothes – Yes, I am far too round to wear much that isn’t maternity wear or stretchy now.

Food Cravings – Bread? Really loving sandwiches at the moment, still having a brunch in-between breakfast and lunch although not feeling as crazy hungry as I was a few weeks ago. No heartburn, that’s pretty good isn’t it?

What do you miss – Sleeping on my back, normal clothes, fashion, being able to twist and bend while seated in the car.

Movement – Always active, no concerns at all about that yet. He is super active and I can always feel him moving around, he has started being more active in the evenings at night-time. A little quiet in the mornings then perks up around lunch time normally.

Symptoms – I feel fine, Ariella has been really unwell the last few weeks so I haven’t really focused much on myself. I do still forget I’m pregnant at times because I don’t have the mental space to run around for all of my appointments plus Ariella’s appointments. I had a strange evening of what I’m told were likely contractions at 32+6 weeks, but they stopped eventually which was good since I was home alone with Ariella. I haven’t had anything like that since, although still get regular Braxton hicks.

What are you looking forward to – The end, sort of. It feels like the pregnancy has flown by and I still have a bunch of things to do. But I’m also not looking forward to getting heavier than I am now, my last pregnancy only lasted until 37+3? I think or around that time so I didn’t have to go forth and experience the last few weeks of pregnancy which from seeing through others doesn’t seem all that great! However I was hoping I’d have a toddler whom would walk outside by this point, which is not the case – but you adjust don’t you?

30 Weeks < – > To be released




Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Thirty Weeks

30 weeks

This week commenced with a fabulous spa weekend break, all three of us which I’ve talked about in my previous lifestyle post update here. I had my first pregnancy massage of this pregnancy and it was joyous, my aches and pains this time are amplified by the sheer required to hold onto Ariella still. It seems carrying heavy items during pregnancy does not apply to me this time around! Some days I feel the strain on my nonexistent core, I fear this is only going to become harder over the course of the next few weeks.

30 Week Bump

Top moment the week? – This has to be spa time and also my second baby shower, it was fab to get together with friends and celebrate the pending new arrival. It was also so relaxing from the suite to Ariella’s behaviour, she coped so well with the change and we came back very refreshed!

Stretch marks – Nothing new quite yet, I have a feeling it will occur though and probably around my belly button as per last time!

Sleep – I really cannot complain in this department, my daughter is a great sleeper mostly. I do get some pelvic pain in pregnancy but I try not to walk too far and a pregnancy pillow always helps. I know many pregnant women have it much harder, are up all the night – so I feel quite glad that isn’t the case. It’s hard enough when they arrive, I’ll enjoy the sleep for now thank you!

Maternity Clothes – Yes lots, in fact pretty much all maternity wear other than a few large jumpers now.

Food Cravings – I’m at the stage where baby has become quite large but hasn’t quite engaged yet so my stomach feels tiny, making eating rather a long-winded affair. Hoping he will drop down soon enough though and I’ll be able to breathe and enjoy food!

What do you miss – Oh nothing really, it doesn’t feel like too long to go now to miss anything much! I guess if I had to pick it would be alcoholic drinks as it is always lovely to enjoy a nice glass of wine with a nice meal.

Movement – Active as ever, I’m currently on high alert for movements though as I have started itching again and if I do develop the same condition again then it can cause reduced movements. All is well so far!

Symptoms – I really feel like so far I am getting away lightly this time, a little achey, breathless, but really not bad at all. Itchy I suppose!

What are you looking forward to – I’m looking forward to another scan soon, at 33 weeks I’ll be seeing him again. One of the main benefits to being high risk (and there aren’t many!) is that you do get to see them more often.

28 Weeks < – > To be released


Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Twenty Eight Weeks

28 weeks

Let me just start by adding in my twenty six and twenty seven week bump photos, I didn’t get enough to log those weeks details but did take a photo at least.

Welcome to the third trimester, how exciting!  This week I definitely feel different, like I’m on the very last stage. Ariella was born nine weeks from now, which doesn’t feel like a very long time at all.

28 Week Bump!

Top moment the week? – Storage! I’ve sorted out storage for all the newbie’s clothes which is great. Feeling a little bit more organised. Also I had another scan so got to see his little face which looks a lot more like a baby and less like an alien now.

Stretch marks – Nothing new yet but I can definitely see my skin is getting more thin.

Sleep – Not too bad, I’ve been unwell lately with Ariella passing me colds so I’ve had a dreadful cough which has been keeping me up. As well as this I’m itching! Which does seem to get worse at night, waiting for bloods to come back but it might be too early to tell yet whether it’s OC again.

Maternity Clothes – I need to source a few for my second baby shower coming up next week, or rather I suppose the week after (I’ll be 30 weeks by then – Just!!). I also need to sort out swimwear for a spa trip, maternity swim wear, not something I’ve had to buy before as last time although we did go away I was still able to squeeze myself into my normal swimwear.

Food Cravings – Not a huge appetite at all, which also makes me think the OC might be on it’s way again.

What do you miss – Lots of beautiful clothes are being released, I’m being spammed by various companies via email and I can’t wear any of it. Which really is sad because I don’t often like clothes much anyway! I also am regretting being pregnant again over the festive season, darn it!

Movement – Lots as always, some real hits lately. I’ve felt him take one elbow and swipe it across, he seems to have fallen into a bit of a pattern now too.

Symptoms – Itching, I hope I don’t have the same issue again but it’s been on/off and I need to check with the midwife during my appointment this coming week. Else I feel pretty great, I have more energy now (probably thanks to the iron tablets and folic acid I’m taking) and generally just forget I am pregnant still at times.

What are you looking forward to

25 Week < – > To be released






Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Twenty Five Weeks

25 weeks

I almost didn’t bother writing anything much for this week, it feels like such a “filler” rather than essential. But it’s worth documenting if only for the bump photo and to keep up to date with the latest progress made.

Top moment the week? – Storage! I had been really trying to decide which storage to buy for the new babies bedroom, we still need to have the room renovated so for now it’s just something that can easily be removed when that happens but will store a bunch of clothes, nappies and changing mat. After looking at lots of options, varying in budgets, materials, looks and styles I decided to go back to my original plan of using the IKEA Hemnes small chest of drawers. It seems to be a really popular choice for most nurseries and really didn’t cost much at all, compared to a solid wood piece will be much lighter to move out of the room and is “fit for purpose” in my mind. We assembled it and it’s now playing host to all the newbies clothes, rather than storing them in a large bag next to his hammock.

I’ve been getting organised in general, I’ve gone through all of Ariella’s old clothes that we had stored away and anything useable has been removed with everything else going to charity. I’m glad that’s done with now as any bigger and I would really start to struggle to find the energy. Even putting the flat pack furniture together was a struggle, going up and down the stairs, bending over a lot to fit various little screws and fixtures in. Normally I am the flat pack queen but I think I’m going to have to hang up my cape for a while and accept that not everything can be done by me.

Stretch marks – I am still dancing around this, not quite big enough yet to test the boundaries of my skin for a second time. I’m sure they will come but later, I already have some anyway so I really am much less “fussed” this time around. They honestly fade, as tragic as they are to have when you first see them after many months you forget.

Sleep – Pretty much fine, no complains this time around. I really think that knowing the best positions and posture have helped loads with sleeping. Either that or I really just am too tired, I don’t need to get up in the night like most pregnant people still.

Maternity Clothes – Yes rocking my new jumpers, dresses, all sorts of maternity wear – really pleased with my purchases actually! I’ll have to expand a little on it though as some of the items arrived damaged and I had to send them back but haven’t finished sorting out the wardrobe yet.

Food Cravings – Probably sandwiches again, I really do like a sandwich – I’ve been eating ploughmans as a brunch, pre warm up to my lunch. I’ve also enjoyed a few official “brunches” out too.

What do you miss – Probably just being able to breathe, but I’m sure i’ll adjust to it. Also I am on iron tablets again so I think anaemia won’t be helping at all.

Movement – Yes, as active as ever. Much more aggressive movements earlier on than I remember before.

Symptoms – A little tired, breathless, but generally okay and my normal self. I have definitely not felt that hungry lately.

What are you looking forward to – My parents are coming to stay this weekend which will be really nice for Ariella, gives us a little break too!

24 Weeks < – > To be released




Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Twenty Four Weeks

24 week

Hello viability! Twenty four weeks, doesn’t feel like viability but at this point a hospital would be considering survival, I definitely don’t want to be seeing him any time soon still! There is something about hitting that milestone, knowing that you now qualify as a person it’s probably quite a big event in most people’s calendar year, if only we were aware enough to celebrate it – he definitely has no idea. Once again not a huge amount of change this week, I actually feel a little less “big” than I have recently, but we did have a midwife appointment which went well. Everything is measuring correctly, it was my first fundal height measurement and so far we are all on target.

Top moment the week? – I guess this has to be hitting viability! But it was nice to see the midwife again too.

Stretch marks – No nothing new so far.

Sleep – Nothing really to report, I had my first leg cramp this week. Those are horrible! Pregnancy pillow is doing its job, either that or I just don’t have as much time to worry about it!

Maternity Clothes – I have finally put in an order of wintery jumpers, rather than stretching out my normal ones like last pregnancy. I think given that the due date is January I’ll get a good use out of them and will be at my biggest during Winter so it makes sense to just focus on the winter wardrobe.

Food Cravings – My appetite has really plummeted, I hope that’s not a sign of the itching to come. Last time I really wasn’t very interested in food too.

What do you miss – I often forget that I’m pregnant at the moment so not really missing anything at all!

Movement – Lots, he is busy in there practicing away.

Symptoms – It’s getting harder to breathe now, I’m not exactly sure how that’s going to work for me in the last trimester. Last time I could just avoid bending or doing “too much” but things are different this time around. I’ve had a lot of colds thanks to my toddler, but I still feel like I’m in the pleasant second trimester right now.

What are you looking forward to – I guess getting to twenty-eight weeks now, at which point children born have a really great survival rate. The risk of any future problems starts to drop dramatically too!

23 Weeks < – > To be released




Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Twenty Three Weeks

23 weeks

Oo la la twenty-three weeks, look at my stomach that’s certainly not flat. At least I no longer look like I could have just eaten one to many chocolate bars although I still do get tentatively asked “You’re expecting?” just in case, no one wants to make that mistake!

It’s all feeling rather Autumnal here in England, I am SO pleased because I hate being pregnant when it’s hot. I can finally get out the winter wear and walk the streets without feeling like I’m going to pass out! I don’t have a huge amount to say about this week, I have noticed all the movements are really strong now but other than that it’s business as usual.

Top moment the week? – Very little in the world of exciting baby things occurred this week, we did have guests stay which was lovely but not particularly baby related. I have a defined bump now which wobbles when kicked or hit from the inside and it was funny to see our guests faces when my stomach suddenly jerked in a weird direction. Ariella is starting two days of nursery a week from next week, which is awesome!

Stretch marks – Not yet, I’m hoping it will be like my last pregnancy when they really only occurred right at the very end.

Sleep – It’s alright, strange how you become used to turning from one side to the other and never sleeping on your back. I think I am rather lucky that I don’t need to get up multiple times in the night like many pregnant women so really I can’t complain. I have been tired again but that’s due to Ariella being sick constantly the last week.

Maternity Clothes – I still haven’t sorted this out, someone please do it for me!

Food Cravings – All over the place, from sweet to destroying a whole bag of salty crisps. I like to go and get lunch on the day so can give my cravings free rein. Really love the Kettle chips sea salt and balsamic vinegar crisps right now.

What do you miss – I miss eating whatever I want, drinking whatever I want. It’s dawned on me that I’ll be sans alcohol (mostly) over the Christmas and New year period, I promised myself last pregnancy that I’d never time it that way again!

Movement – I can feel everything, ever flip, kick, wobble, every single thing. I rarely feel like I’m not moving and it’s hard not to feel queasy about it at times.

Symptoms – I’m starting to get pains when I walk now long distances again, tired, reflux is starting to appear. But all in, it’s alright – I don’t mind really and as long as I don’t eat a mountain of tomatoes without an anti acid nearby I feel perfectly well.

What are you looking forward to – Next week! We hit viability which is great.

Week 22< – > To be released



Bump to Baby Lifestyle

Bump to Baby #2 – Twenty Two Weeks

22 weeks

I’ve had a lot on with Ariella’s appointments this week and thus it went by very quickly. I can’t say I’ve had much of a chance to even think about being pregnant between Portage, arranging a new private occupational therapist, physiotherapy and a speech therapy assessment. The only baby number two dedicated appointment was my vaccinations, on Tuesday I had the Whooping Cough vaccine alongside a flu jab. I felt really rotten the days preceding this and predictably my arms ached, you have one in each arm – yippee.

Looking rather sorry for herself.

Ariella has picked up some kind of vomiting bug too, she’s been sick several times this week and has really been very tired. Poor thing! The bump is growing fast, I did wake up one morning and forgot I was even pregnant though so I must be getting used to it being there.

Top moment the week? – I can’t think of one top moment, it’s been all very busy.

Stretch marks – Nope.

Sleep – I’ve been much more awake, I think the iron tablet must be having an impact!

Maternity Clothes – Errrr yeah.. still haven’t ordered new items for Autumn/Winter, I’m so terrible at this sort of thing!

Food Cravings –  Last week I talked about Subway closing down, well I had a Subway sandwich from another store on Friday. I sat and ate it alongside a cookie, it had been a week-long maybe even longer craving. Until this point I had been constantly trying to replicate the craving with sandwiches and bread, never quite hitting the spot.

What do you miss – Nothing really right now, it’s fine!

Movement – Kick, kick, flip, flip – bounce. Having a posterior placenta I feel every movement and he spends a lot of time moving around. It’s so much easier to keep track of movements now!

Symptoms – My back aches, round ligament pain is starting to flare, not quite able to eat at much as I usually do which is a shame because I can eat, eat eat right now. But I’ve found a way to conquer this, just leave your food out and eat it over a longer space of time. Maybe that’s counter productive to me not looking like a huge whale.

What are you looking forward to – Still viability, 24 weeks feels rather near and I’ll be quite pleased to hit it.


These posts are retrospective, if you’d like to check out other weeks please click below


Week 21< – > To be released