Jul 8, 2020

A Year of Improbabiilties: My Pregnancy Journey Begins

Hello again! It's been a few years and a lot has changed. For starters...

A first time mom's pregnancy journey

I couldn't believe it when I first found out, for a number of reasons.

I'm 27 years old with premature ovarian depletion. I tried to freeze eggs last year, but after a series of tests and re-tests I was told that I was an unlikely candidate for successful egg freezing. My eggs, while young and healthy, were too few. I'd need several rounds to get the ten eggs required for a good shot at one live birth.

I passed, deciding to make myself come to peace with the idea of never being a mother. I'd never felt particularly fertile, if that makes sense, and if I couldn't be a mom myself I could always be a super-invested aunt.

On top of that, my husband had a vasectomy before we met. He'd frozen eggs to preserve the possibility of future children, but that would mean only children through IVF. No surprise babies for us.

April 2020 came and the world was burning. I had a period. Life was insane, but my body was normal. May 2020 came and I didn't have a period. I didn't think much of it; I'd had irregular periods before and while my periods had been very steady for the last year or two, I'd missed plenty of periods before that without it meaning anything.

Then, on May 15, 2020, I came down with what I thought to be the most wretched, prolonged case of food poisoning and/or a stomach bug I'd had yet. I'd been feeling a little off after eating for almost a week already, but sometime mid-morning on Friday the 15th I was struck by crippling nausea.

The next week was a hazy, nauseous blur of lying on the couch and moaning all day. I was exhausted, though I wasn't doing anything but napping, lying around, moaning, forcing myself to eat, and then pleading with my stomach and the heavens for the food to stay down. I was too tired to do any work and, for the first time in the whole pandemic, grateful that being a freelancer during covid meant that work was slow and I could take the week off without being too badly missed by clients.

Thank all things good, I didn't throw up once (I'm a bit of an emetophobe). But my condition also wasn't improving and my husband was getting more and more insistent that I seek medical attention. Finally, on Friday March 22, I had a telehealth appointment with CityMD. I went over my symptoms with a sweet, young doctor, but she couldn't tell me what was wrong with me. I was frustrated that the first thing she asked, and what she kept going back to, was whether I could be pregnant.

Of course I couldn't be pregnant! Sheesh, woman, hadn't I explained already that my husband has a vasectomy and I'm on the edge of infertile? I had higher odds of dying in a house fire than being pregnant! That's a fact, I looked it up. She suggested I schedule an in-person appointment, so that a doctor could poke and prod my stomach a bit and get a better sense of what's going on. Before signing off, she said again that they'd probably want to have me take a pregnancy test during the appointment, as well. I sighed.

After signing off, sitting there on the couch with the cuddlier of our two cats lying on my roiling stomach, I started sobbing hot, salty tears of frustration. I felt so bad, and there was no explanation for it. There was no fix.

My husband came running from his office to check on me when he heard me crying. (An aside: he's the absolute, hands-down best.) I explained my frustration and my fear that I'd schlep all over town, to appointment after appointment and specialist after specialist, with no answers. I'd had experience with digestive issues as a teenager and I knew the jig.

I told him how she seemed fixated on it being pregnancy, even though it couldn't be. My husband had made some jokes about me being pregnant over the past week of misery, but they were jokes. I was certain it was impossible. He looked at me, reminding me that it had been a solid six weeks since I'd had my last period. I explained that my periods were irregular sometimes during times of stress. He didn't push the issue, but he said he'd run out for some tums, ginger chews, and whatever over the counter nausea meds he could get. Sure I'd get negative results, I agreed to have him get a couple pregnancy tests on the way.

When he returned ten or so minutes later, I took some tums and a pregnancy test.

Wait, what?

I took the second pregnancy test. There it was, a Big Fat Plus - and, just in case that wasn't clear enough, 'YES' in all caps.

First Time Mom's Infertility Journey

Yes. I was pregnant. Against all odds, I was pregnant. There were so many feelings over the next few weeks of appointments and conversations, but from the very first moment that I saw my test result there was excitement. Happiness. 

I could be a mom. I was going to be a mom.

I'm now 14 weeks pregnant.

14 week baby bump first time mom

In the morning, with clothes on, I just look bloated. After a full day of eating (and now that the nausea has abated I seem to be ravenous all day long) I look five months pregnant! 

I'm still waiting for the bump to settle into a clearly defined baby bump and less of a bloat belly, but it'll come with time. It's growing pretty fast in recent days - I feel like I can see a difference in just three or four days! 

Here's last week, at 13 weeks, when first thing in the morning and before eating you really couldn't tell that I was pregnant:

13 week pregnant first time mom

In the meantime, I'm tracking progress with bump pics and excited to share my pregnancy and motherhood journey with all of you! Follow my journey here and on instagram, @danainygard. Say hi!

What's your biggest tip for pregnancy?

What are your thoughts on Night Nurses for the first few months that baby is here?


  1. Danai, this is such a wonderful story! I am sorry that you were feeling so ill in the beginning, but what an amazing reason for it! You look so beautiful and happy and glowing. Stay safe and healthy and protect that little nugget! Sending you lots of positive energy for a healthy pregnancy!


  2. How wonderful for you! I wish I had tips, but I would just say to listen to your body while pregnant. It will be so fun when you start to feel those little kicks and movements! Congratulations!

  3. OMG...isn't that just the best news ever?? Talk about a blessing.

  4. Wow! I'm so happy it turned out to be a pregnancy and not something scary like Covid! Congratulations, can't wait to follow along on your journey! xo



  5. This is such wonderful news! What a story and a journey for you. Sending prayers for a smooth pregnancy!


  6. Oh wow what an amazing story behind your pregnancy. How incredible that you fell pregnant, that baby of yours was definitely meant to be. I'm so happy for you! I hope the rest of your pregnancy is less eventful for you xx

    Makeup Muddle

  7. Congrats!! This is lovely news. My partner and I have been trying for a baby for a number of months now but with no luck. xx

  8. Hi, My name is Anna, I can't believe how many stories I'm finding about pregnancy despite husbands getting a vasectomy. Do you mind me asking how long ago he received it? My husband received one 6 years ago and I am wondering if I am pregnant or just hormonal? I have a proper week before I can take a pregnancy test. It could be anything, but I was shocked to hear that a vasectomy can "recantilize" or something of that sort.

    1. Hi Anna - it's very unlikely (around 1 in 1000 odds) so vasectomies are still much more of a sure thing than condoms or hormonal birth control. The internet makes it possible to find those outlier stories, though, so it does seem less rare than it actually is! But you're probably not pregnant. That said, that 1 in 1000 person has to exist, so you could be! The only way to know is to wait and take that pregnancy test. I think there are some tests that can tell you early, as well, before your missed period? You can also have your husband do a semen analysis, where they'll be able to see whether his vasectomy healed itself or if he's still sterile. My husband's vasectomy was over 1.5 years before I got pregnant and he was cleared by his doctor at his 2-3 months post op appointment (but of course now his semen analysis shows a high sperm count again). He just healed, it's crazy!


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