My soon-to-be bump

When I saw the topic for this month’s Scientiae Carnival – Bumps and Humps – I couldn’t resist using my contribution for an announcement. So if you’ll indulge me…

***drum-roll, please***

Hubby and I are expecting!!!! As of this morning, I am ten weeks pregnant, exhausted, nauseous, and a complete emotional wreck. So all signs indicate that this pregnancy is moving along quite well, and my tummy will be developing its own little “bump” in the next few weeks. 🙂 Our breath was taken away just 3 weeks ago when we heard our little one’s heartbeat for the first time. Since then, we’ve been gradually telling immediately family and close friends, two of which are already planning a baby shower. And, this past week, I finally let myself start looking online at nursery items – I can’t believe how much stuff is out there!

Along with all the excitement, my soon-to-be belly bump has, not surprisingly, introduced a few new bumps in the road – the biggest being my struggle to let go of the fear that this pregnancy may not last. We lost our first pregnancy just after Christmas, and every little tinge, pull or cramp during the past six weeks has sent me into a tailspin of panic. For fear that I might get hurt again, I’ve barely let myself get excited the past six weeks. This is supposedly common with women/couples who’ve experienced a pregnancy loss – a sort of fall from innocence that accompanies a pregnancy after miscarriage. Gratefully, this last week has brought with it a new sense of peace and calm – a welcome change from the past month’s anxiety!

Another bump in the road is how this little one growing inside of me will affect is already affecting my life – especially at work. I’m currently searching for TT faculty positions, re-applying for a K grant, and generally trying to keep my competitive edge in the lab. While I knew the work-life balancing act would get more difficult once having a child, the prospect of a baby has become so much more foreboding while trying to “do it all” through nausea, exhaustion and mood swings. If I think the first trimester has been hard, what about after the baby comes? I’m so scared that I’m going to fail miserably at something – either being a mother, or starting a lab. Or worse, **gulp**, both. And the biggest fear of all – will I love my baby as much as I should? Or will I resent this wonderful new life for taking away so much of my freedom?

All of this worrying reminds me of a quote from Arlenna‘s friend, which she shared on my blog a couple of months ago: “Basically, I realized one day that I would never, ever not be mortally worried about SOMETHING ever again.” Truer words have never been spoken. And, with the support of mommy-friends, my own mom, and my wonderful husband, I’m gradually realizing that all these fears are normal. So for now, I’m taking things day by day, trying to keep the coming bump and myself nourished through nausea, struggling to relax in the midst of anxiety, and expecting a new little adventure that will change our lives forever!

May Scientiae


17 thoughts on “My soon-to-be bump

  1. Yay!!!! So happy for you and Mr. Dr. O 🙂 You've made things work to this point; you will make things work, moving forward too. Congratulations!

  2. Thanks everyone for the congrats! And thanks to BB and Dr. Becca for the extra assurances. It's amazing how life changes combined with mood swings can throw a normally confident and level-headed scientist off her game!

  3. Congrats Dr. O! I'm so thrilled for you!
    And don't worry about worrying.. For ever fear and trepidation you have, there are 100s of smiles and giggles and great moments which make the anxiety well worth it!

    Congrats again!! *doing happy dance!*

  4. Congratulations! I'm on a similar track, but several stations behind, so it's always great to hear people talking and blogging about things/situations I know I'll probably be facing some day. Good luck with everything. 🙂

  5. Congratulations! I know exactly what you mean about having fears after having gone through a m/c, so you are not alone with those feelings.

    As for everything else – you'll find a way to make it work that is best for you and your family.

  6. Congratulations! And I concur: things will be crazy and stressful, but hey they would have been either way so you might as well be spinning another few family-related plates during this time in your life. I am a firm believer that a TT job does not REQUIRE one to do nothing but science, it just requires a lot of organization, planning and good people management skills if you're going to make it work with other parts of your life. I think the myth of science only being successful when assistant professors give their lives over to it is perpetuated by the disorganized, obsessed, disgruntled tenured folks who resent having given up so much to the process.

  7. Thanks again for the congrats everyone!

    I agree completely with you, Arlenna. It's just so hard right now to imagine how it will all work out, but all your guys' wonderful blogs about balancing the two give me faith! I also keep reminding myself that, like you said, the most miserable scientists I know don't have a life outside the lab!

  8. Congratulations, that is wonderful! I hear you on the fear, but it will lessen every week, as you hit 12 weeks, have the 2nd trimester ultrasound, etc., and your excitement will skyrocket! Congrats again!

  9. Congratulations Micro Dr. O! I am so happy for you. Don't worry about the balance, you will do it. I think if you were productive and driven before you were pregnant, then you will be productive and driven during and after. At least this is what I keep telling myself. It worked for the during, now let's just hope it works for the after part as well. 😉
    Sorry for the late reply, but I am just now getting around to reading all the blogs and I have a ton to catch up on! Congrats again!!

  10. Oh, I'm waaaay late to the party- but congratulations!

    I just wrote something on Young Female Scientist's blog about breastfeeding that I realized applies to all of motherhood- “Overall, the good outweighs the bad”.

    Enjoy the ride!

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