Back in September, after missing three weeks of work due to debilitating nausea, dehydration & weakness, I resigned from my full time job in Alaska. I couldn’t resign until Ben got a job somewhere, and he had been working his butt off to secure a job somewhere! Sadly due to Covid, as I mentioned in a previous blog, law firms in Alaska just weren’t hiring any more. The job prospects he had when we decided to move were gone. It was really hard on us to accept that fact– but when bulletins started coming out saying some were on a hiring freeze til 2021 — uhhhhhh? Thanks, Covid.
When he flew to CO at the end of August, nailed an interview & the job offer came in I was so thankful I didn’t have to follow through with a leave of absence from work and could just resign. My boss was so understanding of the situation and reiterated her thoughts from when I first started calling out sick that what mattered most was the health of mom + baby, and I was always welcomed back. After the resignation I went through the motions pretty badly. I felt so guilty for resigning, for one, and I also felt like a failure. And we moved to ALASKA AGAIN for my job. And I resigned, AGAIN. And then of course the comparisons. So many women work while pregnant! They’re also usually like 25 years old or 30 on their second or third kid and not first time mom to be at 34 going on 35 for the birth. I always hear how first time older mama’s have it so bad. Not to say many first time mama’s that are younger don’t because oh my gosh so many do!!!!, but when I hear younger mom’s talk about how they didn’t feel pregnant until week 25-30 I get so jealous.
I felt pregnant a week before I tested positive as I sat on the beach in Homer, Alaska with Copper on my lap crying my eyes out because I thought he was going to die and assumed it was his last day ever on the beach. Ben also reminded me that I took not one nap but TWO DAY TIME NAPS (so weird for me) that week while on Vaca! Looking back, I know that was right during the implantation phase and my hormones were WAY out of whack already! I tested positive a week later on July 26th. I was only four weeks pregnant. And I felt so pregnant already. How is that even possible? I took the pregnancy test because I was convinced I either had Covid19, or was pregnant. I was too exhausted to not have something. Turns out that something was a little baby/body havoc wreaker 🙂
These past few months have been interesting. For starters, I didn’t start to feel even a tiny bit better until we drove the Alcan. And that was misery in itself so I think me feeling a tiny bit better was all mental because I HAD TO drive my vehicle from Alaska to Colorado which took 8 long days of full day driving. Ben drove his Tacoma with a trailer and I drove my Rav with a trailer. You should have seen what I survived on. Chips and popcorn and candy bars and a soda for caffeine occasionally because I could not stand the thought of coffee and pop tarts and an occasional donut if we were lucky enough to be able to snag Tim Horton’s. I was constantly battling nausea, acid reflux and headaches. I was so exhausted. I am thankful for audiobooks, for sure.
Once back in Colorado I went through almost two weeks of headaches and even migraines due to- I suppose- elevation change (going from near sea level to 5300 feet), pressure changes, and my hormones beginning to level out as I neared the 2nd trimester. Then, I had a cyst rupture along with the discovery of fibroids and I was crying on the couch for 5 days, unable to move without intense abdominal pain. And then, it was discovered I had a gut bacteria, so I am currently finishing up a 10 day round of antibiotics. WHEW! Go pregnancy! Women are warriors! ❤
Yesterday we reached a big milestone. Week 16! Sunday, we go in for an elective ultrasound to find out the sex of our little baby. A couple weeks ago we got a clear crotch shot during an ultrasound and the sonographer told me what she thinks the sex of the baby is, but there of course were no guarantees (are there ever prior to baby actually coming out?), because it was only week 13-14. I didn’t bet much on her guess because a lot of times baby gender cannot be determined until later. So, we will go in this Sunday, on 16w3d for a 3/4D ultrasound. We are so excited! We can’t wait. I know our families have been patiently waiting as well 🙂 Some, not so patiently. Tyler, more than anyone else, is dying to know!
Along with the 16 week milestone comes a couple of other huge milestones for me as a mama-to-be. First, I am feeling better. Like, ridiculously better compared to how I felt just one month ago. The antibiotics have done wonders and my abdominal pain is gone. Hooray for modern medicine! I am super reluctant to take antibiotics usually but of course with a baby inside you do not take chances with infections. And, it has helped me. Tremendously! I have more energy. I’m going to bed between 10-11pm and waking up about 6:30-7am energized and without nausea. My mornings consist of coffee again (I had given up coffee around week 5 due to losing a complete taste and appetite for it). I can eat whatever I want – including veggies!!! For so long in early pregnancy I could not stand the thought of a vegetable. My headaches have subsided. I actually feel excited rather than just sick all of the time. I don’t know how long this will last, but I’m savoring it!
And I’m job searching. Slowly. I do not want to go back to hospital bedside nursing where I am on my feet for 12+ hours a day with patients who may have Covid19 (unless it’s back to a tiny hospital I worked at previously in eastern CO. I would go back there in a heartbeat, and they know that, but they’re fully staffed right now). I am being a lot pickier for the health of me + our baby, and it’s been difficult to do this while job searching. I still feel so weird and guilty for not having a job. But I also have to remember that going back to a large hospital and putting us through that isn’t in the best interest of either of us right now, or our family. And how long would I be able to handle that, anyway? Am I going to be lifting patients and risking my health at 8 months pregnant in a hospital unit? In addition, Ben’s job is hard and he’s working long hours. He leaves before 7am and gets home around 6pm. And that’s 5 days a week. He’s settling into his new role, but it’s come with an adjustment for him, for sure. And for the dogs. And me. I’m playing full dog mom duty for three dogs in a fourth floor apartment, and house keeper upper and whatever else. But now that my health is back to where it should be, I am ready to start some sort of position (as ready as I can be). I know it won’t last too long because of my pregnancy, but I need something. Baby prepping isn’t cheap! I’ve been applying for lots of jobs in areas outside of the hospital, but no bites yet. Hiring nurses right now is weird in the Covid era.
So that about sums up the first 16 weeks of pregnancy & this weird new season of unemployment, give or take some details 🙂 We are super excited to find out if baby is a girl or boy, and I will report back soon, I’m sure!