Early on, I went on an info binge- absorbing everything I could about what could go wrong, and why, and how, and what I can do to prevent it. Obviously, I know that there’s very little you can do to prevent a spontaneous abortion. It’s just natural selection. If the embryo’s not viable, it’s not viable.
But still, if you searched my browser history in that first trimester you would find a dark inventory of searches like “what does an ectopic pregnancy feel like?” “What is a blighted ovum?” “Placenta Previa” “Chances of miscarriage by week.” “How soon can you see a heartbeat” etc. I sapped it up, like a sponge. Not in a morbid way, but in a ‘the more you know, the better prepared you’ll be’ way. Not that this could help in any tangible way. Rob is very much in the opposite camp, not wanting to tempt fate or think on the dark possibilities.
After seeing a tiny heartbeat at 6 weeks 4 days, I relaxed a little. I relax a little more with each day. But as Rob said, if you worry now, and he/she’s not even born yet, you will worry for the next 18 years. Babies are designed for first time mums. And there is nothing you could do that you aren’t already.
Everything seems so fragile, so minute and delicate and precious that every sneeze, cough or sudden movement seems disastrous. Should I carry on taking full-on Zumba classes twice a week? Should I demo the floor work to my dance kids? I think stopping headstands and inversions in yoga would be a good idea. So how do I tone it all down?
Contrasting advice online does little to help. Take two videos for a first trimester yoga sequence on youtube. One is pretty much a total vinyasa flow with little to no precautions or contraindications advised, the other seems to be yoga for mums made of glass, surrounded by pillows, bolsters and a precious attitude.
I was worried that teaching Zumba in the heat of the moment is not so much about thinking and processing but ‘monkey see, monkey do’ movement. The instructor has to give 110% for her class to give 80%. I worried that if I was only giving 80%, they would give 50%.
So what did I do? Not wanting to be seen as a pansy or only giving half-ass effort, I told my Zumba ladies really early on. Earlier than my mum! I carried on teaching twice a week, but cut out the jumps. I gave my ladies several options of difficulty and made sure they knew they could go harder out than me (and many did).
I stopped the hip wiggling and the full on shimmying. I got more vocal in all my classes, and used more verbal encouragements and cues than physical ones as before. I stopped doing routines that included abdominal work myself (planks, sit ups, leg lifts) and used one of my class to demonstrate before just yelling the instructions over the music. It worked well.
To be brutally honest, I dont think it helps that I dont have a full time job. I’m part time, self employed, teaching kids dance classes, Zumba, yoga, and a bit of working in a fish n chip shop at the weekends. Because I don’t have a strict routine, my motivation to ‘do’ has taken a dramatic nosedive with the arrival of the all-encompassing fatigue. Because my days are pretty quiet, (Rob’s at work 6am-6pm) I can nap when I want to, and don’t have the immediate stimulation to stay up and soldier through.
Not that this is necessarily a bad thing, all articles say to try and sleep when you want to sleep, your body obviously needs it, etc. Because we are in this limbo period of moving back home from NZ, when we found out about the baby, I stopped looking to take on anymore work and started to fizzle out what I was doing. Physically, great... Loads of time to rest, but still up on my feet and moving around, moderately 6 days out of 7. But mentally? Long weekdays at home alone, little social interaction with colleagues and thousands of miles from the comfort and distraction of family and home leads to endless web-trawling and worrying, even more so when all my symptoms completely and spontaneously vanished at the end of this week.