Thursday, August 31, 2017

Mood Swings and Pregnancy

Mood swings and extreme emotional highs and lows, especially during the first trimester, is a very real thing. I was in a perpetually lousy mood and could fly off the handle at the slightest provocation. 
I remember one particular incident. Two days before the start of Tanvi’s school, we went to Malpe beach.  Enroute, Sathya and I got into an argument in the car regarding the music and the volume. And we fought. 

One topic led to another. It’s true that women can bring up totally bizarre past records into a current fight. I did it too. I am beginning to think I am an expert in raking up past grievances. I have like a special storage space in my brain set aside for keeping track of all old humiliations.

Exasperated, he said “Let’s separate ya.” This was the first time ever that he had said it in the past 12 years. I say it every 6 months! (Well, make it every once a year!) That’s my most potent dhamki (threat) since I don’t have the luxury that other women have; of saying “Mei maike jaa rahi hoon.” (I am going to my mother’s house). 

He had never ever uttered that word. And now he did. I was really shocked. I thought maybe I should delete or burn that storage space inside my damn brain. Out loud, I only said ‘OK’ (in bold and caps), turned around on the seat and pretended to sleep. This was end of May and I was already 3 weeks pregnant by then but of course I didn’t know it.

It is strange now to think of that fight and how even as we talked of going our separate ways, there was a new life growing within me to keep us together. At the Shimoga hotel where we stayed the night, Tanvi overheard us talking of separating. I hugged her as we slept and told her, “We will be living separately and from now on you will have 2 of everything – two houses, two birthdays and two gifts”.

She wrapped her arms and legs around me and started weeping. She just wouldn’t hear another word. She was inconsolable. She kept saying ‘NO! I want BOTH”.   I thought I heard Sathya sobbing softly in the adjacent bed. He had uttered those words in anger and he couldn’t take them back now. He didn’t mean it but it was too late. 

I never knew how physically strong Tanvi was and how deeply attached she was to the idea of the three of us as one family unit, until that night. She hugged me so tightly that it actually hurt me. All three of us cried ourselves to sleep that night.  I think divorce affects children in ways that we adults can never imagine. They really want both mother and father together with them at all times.

I remember when Tan was conceived just 3 months after our wedding; I had just ended a long committed relationship, and had literally jumped into this marriage, Sathya was 25 years old, unemployed, reckless, and irresponsible, me at a new job, new relationship, new house and new locality, without the comfort of old friends or family. His parents didn’t even sleep in the direction of our house; such was his mother’s animosity towards me (reason, you ask? Well, because I wasn’t beautiful enough for her Star Son).

I contemplated many times to end the whole ordeal. It was a marriage that was giving heartache to everyone involved. It was pointless to waste precious human life, his and mine, in such a futile union.

But who knew that Tanvi, who was growing within me at the time, was coming to keep us together. 

Comfort Food and Pregnancy

17th August '17 entry:
My go-to-food during pregnancy is idli (shown in the pic). Two idlis with sambar - hunger successfully squashed. As it is, fermented food is always a healthier option. Also idli is a safe bet. Any other snack changes from hotel to hotel. One can’t be certain. But idli tastes the same in every hotel whether price is Rs 5 or Rs 15. May be softer in more expensive hotels but basic taste doesn’t vary much. So no risk of buying and not liking it and being forced to change the order and having to eat something else.   Idli with sambar is tasty, light, healthy and easily available at any time, anywhere. 

As for cravings, the first three months, I had a strong craving for sweets. I used to make at least one sweet everyday - kheer, sheera, etc. I was craving for sugar, a lot! But this fourth month onward, I have not eaten a single morsel of any sweet!! I don't crave for it anymore. I prefer my regular, slightly spicy, food. I also like chattambade (shown in the pic) and bajjis a lot these days. 


10th August '17 entry:
I suffer from it. 

It started many years after my first delivery. Pregnancy and childbirth are some of the known causes of incontinence. 

I had my first baby at the age of 29. I started realizing I had incontinence at the age of 37-38. Advancing age, lack of exercise and vaginal delivery - I feel these three contributed to my problem. 

A loud sneeze or a loud laugh and it would be like the dam broke and I would find myself wet to my thighs. I started wearing sanitary napkins just to contain the water flow and not end up wetting my clothes in public. But even those were not enough, if I laughed a lot. 

I even went to the doc who suggested a minor surgery to contract the muscles so I could hold in the bladder longer. Quite embarrassing the problem of incontinence is. Can’t tell anyone and can’t keep it from anyone. We are literally on high alert all the time, especially when outside! 

Due Date

9th August '17 entry:

I got the expected due date (EDD) for the delivery of the baby. It is 9th of February. The baby will be an Aquarian, like me!
If the baby is born 10 days after the due date, then he/she will be born exactly on MY birthday. Yippeee!!! We will be doing same pinch - same pinch all our lives!!

If the baby is born 5 days after the due date, then he/she will be born on Valentine's Day. Still, Yippeee!!! Some remarkable day, that!

If the baby is born 2 days before the due date, then he/she will be born on my mother’s birthday. Hurray!! He/she will be a very kind person, just like my mother!

If the baby is born 3 days before the due date, then he/she will share the birth number with big sister Tanvi. Both born on 6th of the month!

If the baby is born A Week before the due date, thenhe/she will have a unique Date of Birth (DOB).  02-02! Born on the second of the second month of the year. Big sister Tanvi's DOB is even more special - 06.06.06! 

If the baby is born WAY before the due date, then he/she will be born on Republic day. 

Have I done all permutations and combinations of possible birth dates? 

Weight Gain and Pregnancy

25th July '17 entry:

I was 49 kilos at the start of my first pregnancy in 2006. 
I am at 59 kilos at the start of my second pregnancy in 2017. 
Ten years later, 10 kilos added. One kilo added for every year. 

I peaked at 63 kilos at full term with Tan. 
This time I am starting at 59 and I dread to think what I will peak at!! 75 kilos, perhaps? Ayyoo Rama! How am I going to carry myself?!!

My weight hasn’t vacillated to the right of the weighing scale much throughout the years. I have been wavering at 50-55 all throughout. Only after I hit 39, I put on a couple of kilos and for the first time in many years saw the scale tilting right ward and the needle stopping at 58. Three kilos gained post 35. Hmmm!

I easily shed the pregnancy weight of Tan within a couple of months. I was back at 55 without any diet or gym or any exercise. I breast fed her for 3 complete years. 

Many say if we are on copper-T it makes you put on weight. 
Nothing happened to me. In fact there never ever was any pain or the slightest discomfort. Five years of protection for under Rs 3000 – I feel IUCD is the most economical, stress-free and comfortable family planning option. Daalo aur bhool jao!!!

Way back in 2011, I had gone to Mudbidri to meet Lizzy, my friend and senior in Mangalore University. During a conversation, she casually mentioned that we need to remove it past its expiry date. The expiry date is usually five years. That reminded me about my copper t!  As soon as I returned to Bangalore, I hurried home to check what the expiry date was on mine. I had completely forgotten about it!!!! I had crossed 2 months past the date! I had run to the doc the very next day, removed the first one and got the second one fixed. Thank God for that talk with her!  

Fourth Month

Now that I have entered the fourth month, the energy has returned. I feel less drowsy. Earlier, I used to sleep a minimum of 12 hours every day, 8 at night and 4 during the day; that’s almost half a day spent sleeping. I have been sleeping a lot less now and that too not the earlier ‘lost in a deep, deep slumber’ kind of sleep. Sometimes, I don’t even sleep in the mornings, though the afternoon nap time still continues. 

My thoughts often wander to the topic of caring for the new born baby. Mostly it is a thankless job. If you have a mother, you take it for granted that she will take care. 

Most mother-in-laws don’t like to and it is accepted. No one questions her or asks her to change her attitude. You are lucky if you have an M-I-L who voluntarily and wholeheartedly comes forward to help with the infant. I know of a M-I-L, my ex-colleague, who was in her 50’s back in 2012. She was very clear that she didn’t want to raise her son’s (only son) newborn. "Let them do it. Why should I? It is my turn and time to relax. I have a life of my own. Why should I sacrifice it and be a nanny, an unpaid one at that?" was her reasoning. My own M-I-L has no affinity towards children, not even her own. So expecting her to pitch in with her son’s is too far-fetched. 

Child rearing is a humongous task, time and energy consuming, seemingly endless chores. Only a M-I-L who is extremely maternal or loves babies or loves her son a lot or is dependent on her son for food and shelter, would be willing to do it, I guess.

Oh, by the way, my M-I-L was 42 when her eldest son, my husband, got married. Sathya was 25 years old at the time. At 43, she had become a grandmother. 
And look at me, here I am at 40 pregnant with my second child. At 43, I will be running after a little one, who would still be wobbling! 

At what age will I become a grandmother!!??!! Hey Ram!!!

Is it a generational shift? Are women getting healthier and younger with each passing generation? Or because we are marrying later (me at 28, mother-in-law at 18), are we hanging in there longer? Has education and financial independence had a positive impact on women’s fertility, longevity and overall health?  Don't know.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

First Trimester Completed

5th Aug entry:

We had our NT (Nuchal Translucency) scan on 3rd Aug. Sathya was beside me while the doc showed our baby and its position and shape. She said everything looks fine. The baby showed good leg and hand movements. She showed the heart and the in-&-out movement of the blood flow. I love hearing the heart beat. It’s so loud and fast. The doc measured the baby's length from head to toe and said the baby is 6 centimetres. I was like “Are you kidding me? 6 cms? That’s it!!?!! All that trouble of the first 3 months for just 6 cms?!!!” 

It felt good to have Sathya next to me in the room; unlike last time, when he would be busy smoking outside with Nayan while I went in alone for the tests and scans. This time, it felt like we were in it together. He later told Tan, “Mummy is giving us a good healthy baby. Thank you Mummy.” 

We got the maternity diary to record the monthly details like weight (58 kgs), medicines prescribed and so on. I was asked to stop Finola tabs and start on Coracium, AtoZ Gold and Speedral - medicines for calcium, vitamins, and minerals - from the 4th to the 9th month.

The doc wanted us to go for further tests to negate the possibility of Down’s Syndrome. It troubled me that they kept saying it.  I came home and watched You Tube videos on it. It made me feel sad. The videos were heart-wrenching.

I reassured myself that just because I was 40 and according to medical science the chances of DS increases with the increase in the maternal age, it didn’t mean I had to worry or that my baby would have it. I am going to deliver a healthy baby, just like last time; particularly since I delivered the last one in not the best of the circumstances – both physical and emotional. This time I am taking a lot of rest, I am cooking all my meals, not eating out at all, eating every 3 hours. Things will be fine.

During the entire first trimester, I realized today, I had not eaten mutton or chicken, not even fish. I had just one piece of salmon, once. That’s it. I had cooked mutton and chicken for Sathya and Tan but I had eaten just a piece. I was not keen on it at all. Looks like, I have turned almost 100% vegetarian!!! I remember, immediately after I turned 40 in Feb, I had wanted to give up on meat and mentioned to Sathya the same. And now, it has happened, quite organically, I must say. I didn’t even know when I stopped eating or liking it much. I love the smell of dal and sabzi and I eat it almost as soon as the lunch is ready. I spend two hours cooking and as soon as I am done eating, within half an hour, I feel sleepy and sleep peacefully for an hour or two.

Only thing I want to do now, from the 4th month onward, is to start walking. I have not walked since I got pregnant and I had not walked even before. I must start. June-July the weather was so cold, chilly and breezy I couldn’t step out even with a sweater on. I was shuddering. It is the month of Ashada, for sure. Now in Aug, the weather has warmed up considerably, I am sleeping with the fan speed at 5 which is saying a lot and yet I have not started walking. Walking made my last delivery easy. Even though it was just walking from home to office, less than 2 kms daily, it still helped a lot. It was a two hour labour and relatively smooth. The baby had turned its head a week before the delivery and everything went according to plan. 

I must start walking. I definitely don’t want a C section. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

Cooking and Pregnancy

29th July Entry:

Nausea is a common symptom of pregnancy. Watch any Indian movie where the heroine is married or raped, there will be a scene where she runs to the backyard and pukes. That alerts the audience to the next scene - either it will be a scene of happy celebration or a scene of wholesale shaming of the woman.

I have vomited only twice in the past three months. Lucky me! The nausea is always there though. It has reduced considerably from the past two weeks. The second time I vomited, I was already in the shower. Tanvi came running with a glass of water. I was sitting there with my head in my hands. It completely drains you of every last ounce of energy. I came out and plonked on the bed. 

And then you suddenly realize that your man hasn't lifted his eyes off the phone/TV. That's when you muster all your Naari Shakti (women power) and throw the first curse of the pregnancy at your man. 

May he be born a woman in his next life and may be puke every single day of his first trimester!! 


I am also hungry all the time. Every two-three hours I eat something. I have to. Otherwise I feel this biting, slicing pain. Luckily, since I am not working and I have so much time on hand, I have developed (hold your breath) a never-before-felt love for cooking!! 

Yes, I have started enjoying my time in the kitchen!!
When I was with Tanvi, I used to simply order Hallimane meals every single day, in the office. It was Rs 18/- back in 2005. I ate that throughout the pregnancy. Long live Hallimane! Oh they are from South Canara too. See....we always find our own! 

These past three months, I have spent a lot of time cooking. YouTube videos are a Godsend. I start cooking at 11 and finish by 1. I make one curry, one palya, and rice. Some days, I take hot lunch for Tanvi to her school which is 4 minutes walk from our house. As soon as I am done cooking, I hear the loud rumbles from my tummy and I immediately attack my plate. And so I have never clicked any pictures of my 'masterchef' talent. Hot, tasty, home made lunch slipping down your food pipe, I now know, why we Hindus consider Anna as Brahma (food is life, food is God) and those who serve food are called Annapoorneshwari. 

I mostly follow 'Kabita’s kitchen' and 'nisha madhulika' for North Indian style quick and simple sabzi recipes or 'swayampaka' and 'vaishnavi' for South Indian style sambar (curry) recipes. So far, I have made rava sheera (turned out ok, no one else ate, I had to eat it alone!), vanilla ice cream cake bread (flopped big time), bhindi rava fry (success), souhtekai huli mangalore style (super success), aloo paratha (super success), moong dal halwa (flop), gobi sabzi (success). 

I also made Marie biscuit cake. It was a success. But Tanvi and Sathya didn’t like it or eat it. They mocked me saying, "Can't you just eat Marie biscuits directly? What is all this cake nonsense? It smells and tastes of marie biscuit from a kilometer away." But it was a hit in Tanvi’s lunch box. I had sent four big pieces and her friends devoured it. Nowadays, Tanvi's lunch box is a much sought after one in her class. Her friends love what I cook and even make demands saying, "Ask your mother to make that bhindi rava fry again ya."  

I even made radish palya (sabzi) once. It turned like how they serve in Hindu functions. Radish was not a vegetable on my radar before that! I also made Vangibath powder. It is a breakfast item made with those long, thin, green brinjals. I have also introduced myself to dill leaves! I made dill leaves parathas. Both Tanvi and Sathya not only ate it but asked for more which is the ISI mark for saying it was good. I once made Malabar spinach curry (basale saar we call it in Udupi). I once made the North Karnataka style badnekai yennegai gojju (brinjal gravy). I had put 6 brinjals in it and since both Tan and I don't eat brinjals, poor Sathya had to eat them all. Paapaa!! 

Two Months

6th July entry:

Two months pregnant. 

Yesterday was the first scan. 

Sathya joined me in viewing the first picture of our baby on the monitor. 

It already had a silhouette. So fast I thought!

In the morning, when Sathya had woken up, he said he had a beautiful dream. The baby boy was all round and healthy and had not cried and had big open eyes looking around and the doctor gave him the baby to hold. “Pili Pili Nodtha Ittu Kann Bitkond” he said. (the baby was staring with his big eyes)

I hadn’t heard of any such dream the first time around. So yeah it warmed my heart to hear about it this time. I guess God really heard my prayer. I must have called out to him really loudly, piously or as they say, Koi cheez aap shiddat se mango toh poori kainaat aapko ussey milane ki koshish mei lag jaati hai. (If you pray for something with all your heart, the whole universe conspires to give that to you). 

I had prayed fervently to have a happy, pleasant pregnancy experience. The first one was full of strife – external I mean. I was working hard at a new job, Sathya wasn’t yet responsible, I had to manage home, office, him AND the pregnancy, we were going to discos and pubs with his friends almost every evening. Throughout those 9 months, I don’t remember sleeping during the day or during holidays or ever taking rest.

This time around, I am at home and conscious of the slightest discomfort. Initially, the first month, I used to feel so bloated. Couldn’t pass gas or burp and suffered from indigestion. These past two months, I have been sleeping as soon as Tanvi goes to school, that is around 8:30 and waking up at 10:00. And then again, sleeping in the afternoon for at least two hours.

One major change is, I have completely stopped drinking tea. I was a big tea addict. I needed my two cups – morning and evening without which I couldn’t eat breakfast and worried myself into a headache in the evenings. I was the kind of obsessive tea drinker who wouldn't go to a hotel that didn't serve tea with the breakfast menu. I had to have breakfast WITH the tea. But now, I can’t stand the sight or smell of tea. Now, I don’t even buy tea powder. Strange!

Today, Tanvi’s first monthly tests results came. She got 10 in maths!!!! A future maths teacher getting 10 on 20!! I was shocked. I must dedicate more time and attention to her. I must SIT with her as she studies. So far, I used to leave her on her own. CBSE is hard to adjust to and with her being too focused on going out and playing and not really very studious, it will be difficult later. If I guide her now, and show her how to plan her studies, hand hold for some time, she might be able to cope.

I also want to write a lot. Now that I am not working, I am not even picking up any freelance assignments, I want to devote more time and attention to writing. Write and write and write. 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

The Conception

We did go to the doctor that day. Lakshmi Maternity Clinic in Malleshwaram. Same place where I had delivered Tanvi. Same doctor too- Mrs Leela Rao, a Mangalorean. 

We people from South Canara have this implicit faith in people of our own region - whether it is medicine, food or any other service - we blindly trust their expertise. We believe we will get good quality service, and won't be robbed of our hard-earned money. How much of it is true - I can never be too sure - but by and large it has been true, at least, in my case.

The screening doctor did the preliminary question-answer round. When I said I am 40, she immediately retorted, "Why did you delay your second pregnancy so much? There are high chances of Down's Syndrome." The way she said it, it sounded so scary and so discouraging and I felt disheartened. I came out and told Sathya how the doc warned me of a possible DS affliction. He got angry, "Thika muchkond hogok hel avlige. Yaval avlu?" (Tell her to shut her ass and fuck off.)

But Leela Rao was as cheerful and sweet as she was a decade back. She asked if we were planning to keep the baby and was happy with the affirmation. I was prescribed Folic acid tablets till three months and asked us to come for the first scan next month. Sathya told her she had delivered him too and his daughter as well and now this baby. She smiled.

Sathya called up his parents and his maternal uncle and gave them the news. 

I came home and searched YouTube for what folic acid did and realized the tiny tablets were so important for forming what is called the neural tube of the baby. I kept watching the video again and again...the fertilized egg repeatedly dividing into smaller, individual cells, each cell later forming an organ, the spinal shape and the elongation of the embryo. 
Sathya and I brainstormed about when exactly did I conceive. 

With Tanvi, we were just three months into our marriage, we were wild and young and madly in love and crazily physically attracted to each other. So, with her, when the conception happened was never a question because there were hundreds of instances! 

But this time around, we were puzzled. I had removed the IUCD sometime in June 2016 after using it for 10 years. 2016 to 2017 it took one year for the miracle to take place. If the baby was one month old, it must have happened sometime in May. But when?

Last week of April and first week of May, we were at his parents house in RR Nagar as it was school vacation for Tanvi. And when a couple is into their 12th year of marriage, they very well know how infrequent their romp sessions are. So we could easily pinpoint the day of the rendezvous. So it happened on the 5th! Voila! We zeroed in on the exact day!!!!

We had returned to our home on the 7th of May, a Sunday. And we hadn't had another session till the end of May when we were in Paradise Isle in Malpe. We were professional solvers of conception mysteries!!!

Sathya said, "Nodu, ee kelsa punyabhoomi alli agide" (See, it has happened in a holy place, his parents house) He even remembered that Tanvi had gone down to play in the swimming pool that day! I laughed my heart out. 

The Moment of Truth

21st June 2017 entry:

I went for a walk in the park adjacent to our house. Sathya accompanied me. The plan was to go to the doctor later in the day and remove the foetus!

I tried beseeching him to change his mind. But he in turn told me it was not a practical decision. In a week’s time, I was confirmed to join Hypercity Retail as Deputy Manager – Training, handling their 4 stores in Bangalore. The job involved lots of travelling, within the city, between the stores and of course, the accompanying stress and strain. It was an excellent opportunity both in terms of pay and career growth for me. I agreed. Our ages, me 40 and he 36, was also a factor. Why would we go through the whole child bearing and child rearing process once again? 

He also added, "Look at my salt and pepper beard. Is it a time for one more baby?" 
That made me laugh. I imagined this giant 6 feet-3 inch, 126 kilo man running behind a toddler!

But, there was a part of me that was disturbed. I needed to speak to someone.

Even as we walked, I messaged Sapna, a school friend and doctor in Australia, asking her for advice – both as a friend and a doctor. I had also messaged Suzaan in Kuwait and Asha in Switzerland. Three friends, in three different countries, and three perspectives. I needed it all. I needed more voices. And they were all well-meaning friends. I had not met them after school but somehow, sometimes, people far away from you, seem to be really close.

Sapna gave me a holistic view. Pregnancy was not just an emotional decision but also a medical one. It was a very balanced advice. Suzaan instilled hope that this could be a new direction and new motivation of life. Asha, who was a mother of 3 boys, was dead sure that we must keep the baby. The conversations with them was making things clearer to me. It was helping me become more and more aware of what I really wanted.

Sathya stuck to his ‘remove it’ stand and went to the barber to cut his hair.

At around 8:30, just as Tanvi was leaving for school, I called up Babu, Sathya's childhood friend and told him to speak to Sathya. There was no one else I knew who could convince Sathya. Also, there was no one, among his friends, I was comfortable enough to talk to about such a delicate matter. I urged him to do it soon as, in less than two hours, we would be in the maternity clinic. At ten, we had planned to go to the doctor for the abortion. Babu said he will speak. 

And he did. For half an hour I believe even as the barber was busy massaging Sathya’s head. He called me back saying “Good news, Sathya will be distributing sweets today”. (Aside: thanks to Babu, Sathya did agree to keep the baby but didn’t distribute any sweets. Saala Kanjoos makkichoos!)  

Meanwhile, I went to take a shower. I heard the main door open. Sathya had returned from the salon. I heard the sound of the TV. I came out thinking he would lift me up and say, wow I am going to be a father again.  I had always wanted that filmi scene where the heroine does this whole coy thing, twirling the edges of her saree and the hero lifts the heroine and exclaims “Mei baap banane wala hoon” and does an impromptu dance.


Sathya asked me, “What did you do? You had agreed yesterday to remove and now you are saying no. What if we had removed it yesterday itself”

I sighed. No filmi scene for me! 

The News

20th June 2017 entry:

I woke up at 6 a.m, as usual. Took the test. For some weird reason, I remembered the episode from "Friends" where Rachael takes the test and when Phoebe and Monica tell her its negative, she is, surprisingly, disappointed. She had been wanting, unknown even to her, the result to be positive.

My result was in my hands. I woke up both Sathya and Tanvi, much before their usual time and broke the news to them. I showed them the two lines. 
And for an hour we all lay on the bed talking about it and what to do next. It was like I forgot that Tanvi had school and she would be late. We hugged each other and stared at the two lines!

Surprisingly, Tanvi showed a lot of eagerness to have the baby. All these years she had vehemently told us not to have another baby. It was both strange and pleasurable to hear her talk of wanting a sibling. It was the second unexpected thing after the realization that I had gotten pregnant a second time, without trying, after 11 long years.

Sathya stuck to his standard line, “Let’s remove it." We planned to go to the doctor, later that day, to confirm the pregnancy. Tanvi went to school, happy in the thought that, we would bring her the news that yes even the doctor confirmed the pregnancy.

We didn't go to the doctor. Instead, we went to Taj Biyani hotel in Shivajinagar for lunch because Sathya was craving for their biryani. It was Ramzan and so there were no customers in the restaurant. I couldn’t eat the biryani. It was too huli-huli (sour).

The First Alarm Bell

19th June 2017 entry:

17th June was our 12th wedding anniversary. 

That whole week, I was feeling very uncomfortable. My stomach felt bloated. It was like something was "IN" there. I wanted to burp loudly so it could come out and free me of my discomfort. 

In just a week, I had drunk THREE bottles of different soft drinks. I so badly wanted to burp and release the gaseous feeling. This by itself was so unusual. I don't drink soft drinks at all. I just don't enjoy it much. I always go for milkshakes and sometimes just take a sip if Tanvi offers her glass of Coke. So three whole bottles in a week was the first alarm bell.
Then on the 19th, as I sat there, with that "something in my stomach" feeling, for some reason, I casually remarked to Sathya that may be I am pregnant. And picked up my phone and searched for “the early signs of pregnancy.” It had symptoms like fatigue, nausea without vomiting, constipation, mood swings and so on. I had been feeling all this but since I didn't know any better attributed it to indigestion. 

I asked Sathya to get me the home pregnancy kit, to check if I was right. I would check it early the next morning. Tanvi and Sathya were staring at me in utter disbelief.  

The Beginning

I had initially created this particular blog, almost five years back, to chronicle my first-born Tanvi’s growing up years.  I had named the blog simply as Tanvi. It has only a few posts, just pictures of Tanvi from 6 months to 5 years old. No description, nothing at all. 

I could never, somehow, get around to updating the blog properly. Lack of time, lack of dedication or just plain laziness or a combination of all three but the blog stayed inactive and non-existent.

I am planning to change all that. Time to breathe life into it! Thanks to a school friend Suzaan’s suggestion, I will now convert this blog to chronicle the journey of my second pregnancy. Why not use the existing "Conversations" blog for the same? Well, I want this blog to be exclusively regarding pregnancy, mostly for new moms or other pregnant women. It is going to be a journal of all the things we women experience during the nine months. Most of the content is going to be mundane, some explicit, some graphic and some cringe-worthy. But then, so is pregnancy. It is all of it at different times. It is a bitter-sweet experience. It has its ups and downs.

The important thing is no two pregnancies are the same. This is just my story.

Like the time I started "Conversations", I feel butterflies in my stomach. I am nervous and excited. If nothing else, I want to be able to blog right up to the ninth month. And if no one reads, I hope, at least, my little ones will read it some day. 

Posting the first picture of this beautiful journey.  
This was taken in Malpe, Udupi. 28th May 2017. I was already three weeks pregnant but I had NO IDEA then.