Yesterday I had a mini-study group with a Uni friend who scared the living daylights out of me with pregnancy-related stories. Fortunately, today we had a midwife appointment. Midwife did nothing more than ask a billion questions, could not be persuaded to poke at or listen to anything, but did manage to make me at least feel like extraordinary testing is unnecessary. By extraordinary, we mean the triple or quad screen maternal alphaprotein test done as relatively standard in Australia.
Midwife: There would be no point given your nuchal measurements are so low.
Grant: nods, Loz: has quiet freakout.
Actually I am not so ticked off about it, because in my experience that test frightens more people without cause than it reliably diagnoses, but it is very hard to distinguish between the NHS being wise and sage and sensibly avoiding unnecessary testing and the NHS being a giant cheapskate. That said, while being against unnecessary testing, of course they still want to test for thallassaemia and sickle cell anaemia which is funny because WE ARE THE WRONG COLOUR HUMANS for that.
Midwife's calm attitude did rather help me believe that in all probability, there is still a baby in there which is doing fine. Well, I hope so, as otherwise I am going to have serious problems explaining the bump. Today bought dodgy second-hand copy of a Kitzinger book, where she explains that at 15 weeks one's clothes are likely to be too tight. Clearly, either clothes were looser and more accommodating of bumps in 1997 (I seem to remember pants were higher, which might have helped?) than my tight-jeans wardrobe, or the bump is a high achiever since the jeans were not buttoning by 12 weeks.
The hospital was also funny because the ante-natal clinic and ante-natal ultrasound departments are immediately next to each other but apparently are locked in a battle to the death. Ultrasound insists Plan B is due on 1 January 2008; clinic insists 4 January 2008; I insist they are both wrong, but why would I know, it's not like it was MY OVARY that started the clock ticking on this or anything.
Kudos however to the midwife whose phlebotomy rocks. Cf my last Australian GP who went through the vein and out the other side; I then let said GP do a pap smear, because apparently I cannot be taught. Public service Announcement: do not be letting doctors take blood EVAH; only nurses, pathologists and phlebotomists can be trusted. NHS announcement: swabbing before taking blood makes the needle hurt more and doesn't reduce the risk of infection, ditto swabbing after (NHS: £0.0000002 saved in antiseptic! woohoo! Loz: ummmmmmmmmmmm).
Grant has worked 2x 12 hour day shifts and is currently doing a night shift, proving that he is Well Ard. Tour de France in town tomorrow with time trials through Hyde Park, so we will head there as soon as he wakes up. You may deduce from this that tomorrow I do not intend to be arsed studying, either.
Last night I fed Grant and Regan roast chook dinner and apple crumble in my true housewifely fashion and it was quite tasty if I do say so myself, except that I cannot time a chicken dinner for love or money and only got it on the table at 9pm (which makes no sense - bird, free range and organic, natch, weighed 1.5 kg and went in the oven at 6.30pm; should have been ready at 8; really wasn't). We were up until almost 1am, which is starting to look a bit too much like our regular bedtime.
Therefore today, post-midwife £5 veg thali extravaganza at Hammersmith Sagar, aka We Will Kill You With The Too Much Food (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED OH MY GOD SO GOOD, although a little overwhelming when the courses just keep coming), Grant and I had a nice long nap and now I am sort of swaying snoozily around the flat while trying to do laundry and get my dinner organised. Then I think I might head back to bed with a book. It feels much like the weekends of my former life, where the 6.5 hour sleeps of weekdays would be topped up with binge sleeping at the weekend, only this time I have a much better excuse for being tired. Kitzinger firmly believes that as it is after week 14 I should be feeling more energetic but that may be her second strike WRONG. Of course, I was this tired before Plan B when I didn't get enough damned sleep, so maybe I shouldn't be so hard on poor Kitzinger.
Things liked about England today: the healthcare continues to be free; the Indian food is amazing and cheap; the sun is still amply up until 9pm; the street urchins appear to have been called in for dinner as are temporarily not shrieking; the tube from Hammersmith to Latimer Road (other local station near us) continues to be on time and under-budget and truly the fastest distance between two points; Primark is so cheap I can't work out how they are managing it (presumably third world exploitation), TOUR DE FRANCE IS IN LONDON THIS WEEKEND. Oh, and best of all: Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council have, after two months of deliberations, finally admitted they were wrong to charge us council tax and are giving us £300 quid back. Never mind the fact that when we paid it, it was crippling, and now we're in the money so it's all earmarked for spending on hats, the point is: I FOUGHT THE BUREAUCRACY AND THE BUREAUCRACY LOST LIKE A BIG LOSER. VICTORY IS MINE. Good on Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council for being truly gracious in defeat.
Things I am happy about generally: I have a lovely husband + the vengeful gas of the first trimester appears to have "passed" + can now sleep through the night + pants with elastic are an excellent invention.
Things I ain't so happy about today:
- I'm on my third throat infection in a month. I know there is a point to a lowered immune system in pregnancy - and hell, I get the benefit in reduced allergies, all the more appreciated in plane tree season esp. when I can't take antihistamines - but it appears to be the same throat infection! I already beat this! Twice! Where are the antibodies? Why is my throat so determined to have me puffing ventolin prophylactically to avoid bronchial complications forever?
- I cannot seem to force my brain to study. It simply isn't scared enough. It keeps getting positive reinforcement when people ask it things it already knows, and seems to be keen on metaphorically inclining on a couch eating grapes waiting for people to tell it how clever it is. Someone ask me a stumper so I can get motivated, here.
- We're not at home, and it would be good to be. Soon, though.