This is a part of a series of blog posts sharing my experiences as a young Ghanaian working mother. I looked for a Ghanaian voice as I walked this journey but barely found any so I have decided to share to begin a conversation among others in this beautiful journey.
This is the first in the series.
The early signs were showing. Tender breasts. Tiredness. Bloated Stomach. A missed period.
But for each of these, I had a reason.
Tender breasts? Maybe I was pretending.
Tiredness? Work of course!
Bloated Stomach? The waakye I bought (Poor seller, I never bought her waakye again)
A missed period? Oh naa. A delayed period.
My husband was the one who was confident he had scored a goal. After waiting a week or two too long, I finally agreed to buy a pregnancy test kit with the hopes of getting the second line. Of course, I wanted a baby! After 8 months of marriage, it was perfect timing. I think I was in that state of denial because I did not want to flirt with the idea too much and end up being disappointed. Something I tend to do a lot.
Anyway, I had agreed to buy the kit. Now the question was from where? There are about 3 pharmacies close to my home, but I wanted to buy it far from the vicinity. Just in case it’s negative. You know, maybe the pharmacist will see me later without a big belly and realise that’s the lady who bought the kit, right? Awww, it was negative. Much ado about nothing eh? Tell that to Cheryl. Hehe.
So I happen to go out that Saturday and bought the kit before getting home. I got what I wanted after all. The kit was about 5/10 cedis.
When I got home, I must have read every single article on Google about how to get the most accurate result. Based on what I read, I decided to wait till Sunday morning. The morning pee has the highest concentration of HCG, the hormone I will be testing for, my Google professors advised.
The night was weird. I had interesting dreams about the test. False positives and false negatives. Oh mehn! It was just a simple test! Why was I so worked up about it?
I woke up early. I wanted to go do the test. Then I decided against it and waited till my alarm went.
Beep! Up! Bathroom! Pee! Test! Two lines! The beginning of motherhood!
I was thrilled. I didn’t know what to think or feel. I rushed to my husband who had enjoyed his sleep. Woke him up to the good news. He was excited too! We shared our first hug as parents. Now what?
Okay. Church first, then hospital.
Church was wonderful that day. It was as though I already had my baby in my arms. As if by coincidence, I was MC that day. Each commentary I gave on the readings for the day, every hymn I announced took me to a different cloud. I danced like I haven’t in a long time.
You know that feeling you get when after eating a pack of biscuits you didn’t know had expired, you suddenly feel queasy when someone tells you there were 3 hours later? Knowing I was pregnant suddenly made me feel extra hungry. After church, we grabbed a quick snack then off to the clinic!
Seeing the doctor was weird in a funny way. I remember almost accurately the statement I made.
“We got a positive pregnant test this morning so we have come to tell you.”
He asked some questions. Routine stuff. Then he sent us to the lab. The apprehension returned. What if my home pregnancy test was wrong?
But it was right! “So it’s true. You are pregnant. Congratulations.” And then he went on to give us general pregnancy advise about what I can and cannot do. My husband was particularly interested in a food restriction that included pizza and khebab. Boys abr3. But none of that. I could eat everything. In fact, I might even crave those more.
He wrote a scan test request for me. Just to be sure our baby was at the right place. Then he prescribed some medication which included one for malaria.
At the pharmacy, the pharmacist excluded the malaria medication. She wasn’t for the idea of taking malaria medication in the first trimester. She advised me to eat a lot of fruits. I will be just fine.
Doctor vs Pharmacist confusion? When I got home, I asked Google. I was told some malaria medications are not recommended in the first trimester after all. But I think what the doctor had prescribed was. Or? Well…eventually, I got well so I guess it didn’t matter any more.
The journey of advice from Google, doctors, pharmacists, nurses, midwives, parents, siblings, in-laws had begun.
The journey of parenthood. 🙂
Stay tuned for the story of our first scan.
Got something to share? Drop it in the comments below! Questions? I will answer what I can and perhaps other readers will answer what I can’t.