I am actually appalled at how I managed my pregnancy or rather did not manage it. In fact I am appalled at how I have managed my life until very recently. Like most young educated women I worked to try and get a so-called career and fit a pregnancy around this. In my early thirties I had a wonderful job which lasted for seven years (my employers were very tolerant!) and during this time I became pregnant. In fact I had first got the job by taking over from my colleague who was on maternity leave. The maternity leave in question is only about 3 months and like my colleague did before me I just assumed that I would resume work after this brief spell off. This was never even discussed with my ex husband or anyone else. It was a given and this ill-thought-out decision was to have disastrous consequences for my health and everyone around me…….

I realise now that I was pretty much manic throughout my pregnancy. My mind was constantly racing, the thoughts running at 100 mph and stress levels bursting their banks. I remember 2 weeks before the due date when I was particularly frazzled due to training my replacement; I went for my last scan and was practically typing on my laptop during the examination. The nurses almost tied me to the bed as I had pre-eclampsia. The symptoms parallel with mental illness in that they include anxiety, racing pulse, mental confusion, chest pain, sense of impending doom. Of course high blood pressure is the main silent symptom and can be catastrophic.  A healthy baby girl arrived after a traumatic emergency Caesarian.

To all those mums, I raise my glass of sparkling water to you and wish you all the best on your individual journeys. There is no ‘’right’’ way only the right way for you.

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