Before getting pregnant... Advice for pre-TTCer?

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walkingwollie Posts: 3344
Hi all I was a July 07 WOL but have changed name as don't want anyone seeing me try to plan a baby! I am really nervous/excited/bewildered by prospect of TTC and DH and I have said we will start trying soon enough.. Just wondering did any of you have things to 'square away' before you got pregnant? I want to try and sort myself out a bit before baba comes along.. I need to learn to drive, for example.. give up nicorette (which I've been on FAR too long :o0 and I'd like to change my diet a bit. I don't want any poor baby eating my diet for nine months as they'd probably be born with scurvy I've been so low on the fruit and veg since 'Operation Slim for Wedding Dress' stopped! I wonder what your advice would be about managing more serious life-changes pre- or post-conception? I am really unhappy in my job and DH is worried about me continuing to work as late and hard as I do. I started an MSc after the wedding (on top of my full time job) as I had some idea that if I added a qualification I could get a promotion and everything would be right as rain. I got a promotion, right enough, but guess what? They don't pay you extra money for less work! :-8 My job is not family friendly (a colleague had to use all her annual leave when she had morning sickness, they will sometimes deny colleague's carers leave, and you have to give FOUR months notice for even one day's annual leave in normal circumstances!! It's the UK btw). I can't imagine trying to stick at it with a little baby, let alone two or three over the next five years - and maternity leave isn't as good here as in Ireland. Has anyone been in a similar situation? People keep telling me to sort stuff out before I have a baby e.g. if I want to retrain/move home to Ireland etc but I'm 30 now and I want three kids so I don't feel I have time to mess about 'sorting out my life'. People say there will never be a right time and I guess they're right but I don't want to make things really awkward either? Any advice would be great as I know you've all been-there, done-that. Also I don't want to talk to my friends (who are all single!) about it or my mother (as I know her answer would involve me getting pregnant tomorrow - she's desperate for a grandchild at this stage!). Thanks :thnk
StayShiny Posts: 1078
hi mrsbean, I've pm-ed you. :wv
lily79 Posts: 153
start taking folic acid, get a prescription for the extra strenght from your doctor and start taking it at least 2 months before ttc
tammie Posts: 169
Also its recommended to get a check for german measles
Hokey Cokey Posts: 4816
I wanted to lose some (ok, a lot of!) weight before getting pregnant, have a decent long-haul holiday with hubby, and sort out our finances, but the pregnancy happened before I could do any of that, and I suppose now the baby has become the priority and the other things are just minor issues now.
alton Posts: 3077
It sounds to me like you have a long daunting list of "to do's" but I'm guessing that they are probably inter-related and the pivot is your current job. I'm willing to bet that if you were working in a job that you felt was more in tune with the lifestyle you envision for yourself, that things like your diet and nicorette addiction would fall into place. Talk to your DH about your family plans and take everyone else's advice with a pinch of salt :o0 The received wisdom about getting your life sorted out before you have the babies is fine but really there is never going to a perfect time to have a baby. It also suggests that you're supposed to get everything just right, have a baby, and stay static for the next 20 years. If you can figure out your priorities and set yourself on the right career track [i:238kts29]for you[/i:238kts29] then you can continue to work towards your goals, perhaps a bit more slowly than if you were childfree. I hope that I'm not being offensive with this next comment, but I can't help wonder if you have created a sort of roadblock for yourself because at some level you aren't sure that you really want children? "Freeing Ourselves From The Mad Myths Of Parenthood" by Susan Jeffers explores the downsides of parenting in a way that isn't usually acknowledged.
allexcitednow Posts: 654
basicly get yourself in top shape! -take folic acid -eat a good healty diet -if you smoke then prepare yourself for stopping - get a full dental check (you can get urgent things done when pregnant but best to get any teeth problems sorted now. -Have a smear - remember it will be a year befor you have another one done - get your measels resistance cheacked as you can get a booster if needed Best of luck!!!
Grunge Bride Posts: 2529
Girls, I was getting all worried about this matter of checking your rubella resistance as someone posted here recently that if you need a booster you can't TTC for 12 months, and that even if you got the rubella shot at age 12 at school (like most people) you might not still be immune. We're due to start trying for this month from Wednesday so obviously if I needed a blood test and had to wait for results etc that would be this month out the window....so I rang the doctor on Friday, he'd already left the surgery, tried Saturday and couldn't get him, and tried twice this morning til I finally got him. He said that it's incorrect that if you get the rubella shot at 12 that you may need a booster - he said you never say never in medicine but that it's 99% certain that I am fine, and that getting a blood test to check immunity / whether I need a booster is NOT THE NORM and not something he'd be recommending. He's a medical professional and is my doctor, so I have to take his word for it. To be honest if every single woman thinking of conceiving had to go and get her rubella immunity checked, it would be plastered all over this board, and we'd all know about it. My friend has had 2 babies and is pg with her third, and she hadn't heard this either. When she had her first scan one of the questions she was asked was "did you have your rubella shot at age 12" - not have you been checked recently for immunity. So all in all I have been told by my doctor that there is no need to worry, and it seems I'd be a complete hypochondriac if I took any further action, so i presume I am safe to calm down and carry on with TTC. I thought I'd share this as I was in a bit of a panic over this and it may save others some grief - with the caveat that this is the information as I have been told it. I do hope my doctor knows what he is talking about but that is what he said to me.
walkingwollie Posts: 3344
Hi Thanks.. some great tips! Never knew about measles/chickenpox! And def need a trip to the dentist. Alton, I don't think I've got roadblocks but it's a fair question. I have never had any doubts about having kids. I don't expect to be a perfect mother or to have perfect kids.. I don't expect my life stops with kids, either. I do know that work isn't good enough at the moment to go back to after kids and I know we won't pay a mortgage if I don't... You are right about my current job being the pivot. It rules my life. At the moment, I am particularly frustrated and half-crazed about it because I have a six month secondment, two days a week, to an amazing job that is just everything I want it to be. I go there at 8, I leave at 4 with everything done and done well.. and I get school holidays! Contrast this with today, which was 8-7.30 with a one and a half hour commute EACH WAY and consisted of lots of angry phonecalls and deadlines passing and not enough time to even breathe, let alone think or feel like a normal human! The secondment is what I want for myself and my future family - and what I imagined I was getting myself into when I chose this career. The MSc has opened this door for me but the secondment is 100% temporary (no possibility of extension) and jobs like it are extremely, extremely rare (perhaps 1 per county - and UK counties are big!). The job doesn't exist in Ireland. The clinic side of my job, as opposed to the schools-based, is just so difficult and upsetting and distressing.. and I would give it all up tomorrow if I could but yet I love the actual WORK when I have time to do it. The secondment is the opposite. 6 - 12 kids, quality therapy, great working relationships. It's tough, it's busy, the kids have extremely comp-lex needs but God, it feels like Utopia. If I knew I had a job like that permanently, I'd be up the duff ASAP and coming back to work on just those days! I just want reasonable expectations.. you know, that you can work 9-5 and not live, breathe and sleep your job with a salary of 23-25K (GBP) (which, let's face it, will drop to 2/3 of that when I go part time).. I got SO mad recently with a friend in Ireland who actually thinks my job is cushy.. yeah, right. You tell crying mums that you can't give therapy to their 4 year old five or six times a day and see how cushy you feel it is.. You'll have heard mums like these on Morning Ireland and the like.. it breaks my heart every time I hear one of these stories, the injustice of it.. I wish I'd just gone into teaching instead. It seems so much happier and they get holidays too! I suppose it depends on your outlook. Maybe some people don't feel it as much.. Lots of people I work with seem to and there is a high incidence of women single at 40 because they've thrown their lives into their careers or buckling under the pressure. My career is important to me.. it was to my mother, too, and that didn't change when she had kiddos... but it's not that important. I do want enough money to pay a mortgage though! Maybe it will all change for me and maybe I need to get my priorities sorted.. but then, no one would suggest that if I were a man... I don't think most people can juggle it all, but hey, I'm a Speech Therapist not a City Trader! Moan moan, whinge whinge. This too shall pass.. it always does.. but yeah, got to get it sorted. The more I moan about it, the more I realise how miserable it really does make me.. and no job is worth that..
walkingwollie Posts: 3344
Hi Thanks.. some great tips! Never knew about measles/chickenpox! And def need a trip to the dentist. Alton, I don't think I've got roadblocks but it's a fair question. I have never had any doubts about having kids. I don't expect to be a perfect mother or to have perfect kids.. I don't expect my life stops with kids, either. I do know that work isn't good enough at the moment to go back to after kids and I know we won't pay a mortgage if I don't... You are right about my current job being the pivot. It rules my life. At the moment, I am particularly frustrated and half-crazed about it because I have a six month secondment, two days a week, to an amazing job that is just everything I want it to be. I go there at 8, I leave at 4 with everything done and done well.. and I get school holidays! Contrast this with today, which was 8-7.30 with a one and a half hour commute EACH WAY and consisted of lots of angry phonecalls and deadlines passing and not enough time to even breathe, let alone think or feel like a normal human! The secondment is what I want for myself and my future family - and what I imagined I was getting myself into when I chose this career. The MSc has opened this door for me but the secondment is 100% temporary (no possibility of extension) and jobs like it are extremely, extremely rare (perhaps 1 per county - and UK counties are big!). The job doesn't exist in Ireland. The clinic side of my job, as opposed to the schools-based, is just so difficult and upsetting and distressing.. and I would give it all up tomorrow if I could but yet I love the actual WORK when I have time to do it. The secondment is the opposite. 6 - 12 kids, quality therapy, great working relationships. It's tough, it's busy, the kids have extremely comp-lex needs but God, it feels like Utopia. If I knew I had a job like that permanently, I'd be up the duff ASAP and coming back to work on just those days! I just want reasonable expectations.. you know, that you can work 9-5 and not live, breathe and sleep your job with a salary of 23-25K (GBP) (which, let's face it, will drop to 2/3 of that when I go part time).. I got SO mad recently with a friend in Ireland who actually thinks my job is cushy.. yeah, right. You tell crying mums that you can't give therapy to their 4 year old five or six times a day and see how cushy you feel it is.. You'll have heard mums like these on Morning Ireland and the like.. it breaks my heart every time I hear one of these stories, the injustice of it.. I wish I'd just gone into teaching instead. It seems so much happier and they get holidays too! I suppose it depends on your outlook. Maybe some people don't feel it as much.. Lots of people I work with seem to and there is a high incidence of women single at 40 because they've thrown their lives into their careers or buckling under the pressure. My career is important to me.. it was to my mother, too, and that didn't change when she had kiddos... but it's not that important. I do want enough money to pay a mortgage though! Maybe it will all change for me and maybe I need to get my priorities sorted.. but then, no one would suggest that if I were a man... I don't think most people can juggle it all, but hey, I'm a Speech Therapist not a City Trader! Moan moan, whinge whinge. This too shall pass.. it always does.. but yeah, got to get it sorted. The more I moan about it, the more I realise how miserable it really does make me.. and no job is worth that..