Once upon a time, I was a girl who thought she might be pregnant all of the time.
As soon as I put on a bit of weight or noticed some water retention, I irrationally freaked out that I’d be having the baby of a colleague I’d had one too many wines with.
Ok, I’m exaggerating when I say ‘all of the time’. I’m not on Geordie Shore and there were plenty of times that I didn’t even stand next to a guy I fancied, let alone anything else.
So worrying that I might be pregnant didn’t happen every day, but it did enough times for me to totally get the wrong idea about getting pregnant.
I naively assumed that it could happen. Just like that.
Bish, bash, bosh. Preggers.
So when I met the man I wanted to settle down and have babies with, I found myself thinking irrational thoughts again. Only this time, I wasn’t freaking out that we’d be having a baby before we’d walked down the aisle.
No, I began thinking that maybe I actually might not be able to get pregnant after all?
As my wedding approached, I felt so ready to take the next step and produce an offspring.
“But what if I can’t get pregnant? What if we have problems? What if I can never have kids?”
Happily, I needn’t have worried when I fell pregnant in month 2 of marriage, and went on to have a happy healthy girl who is now 2 and a half years old.
But what happens when getting pregnant again throws up all sorts of curveballs?
In the time since deciding I felt ready to go for it again, naively thinking it could happen just as easily, my original fears have been answered.
I’ve had polyps on my womb, an operation to fix it, and suffered 2 missed miscarriages.
It’s fair to say that my thoughts on getting pregnant have yet again been drastically changed.
Getting pregnant can be bloody hard. Like, really bloody hard.
A couple ages 29-33 with a normal functioning reproductive system has only a 20-25% chance of conceiving in any given month (National Women’s Health Resource Center).
And staying pregnant really has no guarantees.
Miscarriages happen in 1 out of 4 pregnancies Tommy’s).
If I am honest, I thought it was something you just read about in magazines; people’s infertility journeys. It’s something you read about on Mummy blogs that makes you cry. Maybe it’s even something your Mum tells you has happened to that girl you went to primary school with, but haven’t seen in 20 years.
It’s not something that happens to your actual friends. The friends that you have real conversations with. The friends that you support through really difficult times and try your best to offer advice.
It is also not something that happens to you.
Unfortunately though, as infertility and miscarriage are so common, there is a good chance that you or a friend of yours will go through something related at some point.
You think you know your body. You think after you’ve already had a baby that you’ll be able to spot signs and have a good grasp on what’s going on.
Well the truth is that nobody actually has a bloody clue, and getting pregnant is an absolute minefield of the unknown.
You can read more and find support at: The Miscarriage Association, NHS, Tommy’s