We may not be a Royal, but we have our own little announcement!

Riding on the exciting news that our 5th in line to the thrown has been born (who else watched Kate come out looking incredible and felt so sorry that this is still required of her, and that the media can’t just let her nurture and nurse her newborn), we thought it was about time we announced our own special news … yes, we are expecting baby no.2, and we’re SO happy!

I am currently 17 weeks pregnant and due on the 28th September. Now if you’ve been keeping up to date with the PABS news you’ll realise this is only 12 days after our September show, am I mad, yes probably! BUT I will have the best team around me and for anyone who has organised anything you’ll know that a lot of the work which goes into large events is done quite far in advance – so I’m confident it will all run nice and smoothly! Plus I like to keep busy and have a focus – something which I’ve been reminded about very recently as prior to our show the other week I had had minimal pregnancy symptoms UNTIL straight after the show when it feels like they’ve come in a huge wave and totally knocked me over! But so is life and it’s all part and parcel of creating a little human! I will not complain (much!)

So I didn’t want this blog to just be all about our wonderful announcement – I wanted to give you a bit more of an insight into our last 4 months (and I say ‘our’ as we’ve dealt with everything as a family, and it’s important to acknowledge how difficult pregnancy can also be for our partners). Why am I sharing this (as it is quite a personal journey for myself and my husband, Tom), because life isn’t easy and speaking about difficulties is great for healing and overcoming hard times (I’ve had a few teary moments whilst writing and reading this blog out).

The day before Elkie’s 1st birthday (and her actually birthday) was one of the most difficult weekends I’ve been through – we had known for a week that we were expecting but I was then hit with a hot flush and weird sensation, I just knew something was going horribly wrong. I felt extremely anxious, fearful, worried of the unknown and as I was at an event promoting The Parent and Baby Show, I was totally embarrassed and unsure how to get through the situation I had suddenly found myself in without too much fuss. I needed my husband. I needed a hug. And I needed to hide away and pretend nothing was wrong. I had my daughter’s 1st birthday party all planned and perfected the next day and nothing could go wrong. But it was, and from this moment on I became fully aware of the pain, anxiety and fear so many women face in pregnancy each day!

To cut a long 6 weeks short, our baby turned out to be just fine, even though we were told to prepare for the worst. Which I had fully done, so much so that I pretty much just ignored pregnancy as I was certain it wasn’t going to be viable at some point soon. I researched the hell out of what I was going to experience, the signs, the emotions and the support groups – and I was so relieved to find so many Norwich based groups out there I could turn to. But also so sad to see SO many women so heartbroken and empty. Since the scans revealed we were out of the woods I’ve been rattling my brains to how our September show can support women going through worse than what I did, I’m yet to come up with something I feel will work, but I will do!

Keeping all of this private and within a very small network of family and friends was really difficult. Sometimes I wanted to be swallowed up, not answer the phone or emails and take a few days out, but I didn’t feel I could without making people aware that something was going on behind closed doors. I’m sure so many other families must struggle with this. You want to keep what’s going on to yourself, yet sometimes you just need a little slack and understanding. It’s an awful viscous circle of emotions and hormones!

So fast forward a few more weeks, I’m starting to show (but clever clothing just makes me look a little chubby rather than pregnant), the show comes and goes and we’re in Norwich about to go to Window To The Womb for our gender scan on Weds 18th April. We are so excited! The nerves of the show have been replaced with excitement for whether it’s a boy or a girl, and most importantly if all looks OK still!

We used Window To The Womb with Elkie, twice, and it was such a magical and enjoyable experience. Now don’t get me wrong, the NHS are brilliant and I really value the support they offer pregnant ladies, the service they provide and the incredible midwives. But I hate hospitals as I am one of those unfortunate people who’ve spent a lot of time in them since I was a child! Window To The Womb is warm and friendly, calm and not crowded – you feel so special and looked after from the minute you walk in to the minute you walk out with your gift pack! Our scan was incredibly reassuring and we asked the ladies to put the gender inside an envelope so we could go to Rooftop Gardens and open it on our own with some yummy cocktails (mocktails) and food! This is the beauty of Window To The Womb … a 5 min walk away and you’re in one of Norwich’s funkiest bars/restaurants ready to find out how our life was about to further unfold!

So in all – would I recommend WTTW – WITHOUT  a doubt! And apparently so would SO many other couples, all you have to do is read their reviews on social media and comments in their ‘shop’ on Timber Hill! And what’s even more lovely is we now have lots of pictures of it’s legs, hands and the all important side view which shows our baby developing as expected. We even got to hear the heartbeat! We felt so welcomed and nothing was rushed, we got to ask lots of questions (and I had lots) and we felt totally reassured and excited for our 28 weeks 4D scan!

Although we have been told that there is now nothing to worry about, there will always be part of me which will remain anxious throughout the rest of pregnancy. I know I won’t be able to shake off this feeling, and from other mums I’ve spoken to this is natural. I’m not quite half way there yet and we still have a long way to go, but my body transformation is quickly taking place now and there’s no hiding that I’m growing a little sibling for Elkie! We have everything crossed for a smooth pregnancy from here on out!

Thanks for reading … I’m sure i’ll keep you updated on how pregnancy progresses over on Instagram, I’d love to hear if anyone else is due in September so we can say ‘Hi’ in delivery!

Love, Alex xxx

Oh and by the way … IT’S A BOY! Elkie will have a little brother and we’re so happy!