Monday, 23 May 2011


As the countdown became less, I refused to pack my hospital overnight bag for when I went into labour. This, I thought, was tempting fate, and I was determined that this baby would not be born before my fiancé's return. I would commit myself to baby upon his homecoming.

The wedding planning was also coming along. After looking at numerous venues, I decided on the gorgeous New House Country Hotel in Cardiff. The views were magnificent, and you could see my hometown in the far distance. I took my mum to see it, and H's family, they all loved it. We originally wanted to get married on our two year anniversary of meeting, this date happened to fall on a Bank Holiday Monday, but the venue was free for this date. I rang the registrar, but they would not come out to marry us on this date. My heart sank! I rang the venue, and booked the nearest available day to this date. The 8th of August 2010. It seemed like a long time to wait, but I wanted our day to be perfect.

H had his homecoming date, which had stayed the same for some time, it was before my due date, but only by a day or two. This still worried me. I was convinced this baby was coming early, I had developed SPD (Symphosis Pubis Disfunction) and was on crutches. Even though I struggled with day-to-day tasks, I refused to call welfare to have H flown home. He loved his job, and if I could get by I would get by. I had friends and family around me to help every crutch-aided step of the way.
I always kept in contact with H's family while he was away, and his parents had bought the baby some things so asked if the could come over one evening to see me before H came home. This was fine with me, and I looked forward to seeing them.
The date they planned to come down came, and I made sure the house was spotless (with help from my mum). I was so tired and weak from the pregnancy that I didn't bother putting on any make-up. It was only the in-laws I thought, and with just over two weeks until my due date, I knew they'd understand if I didn't look my best.
H's mum text me throughout the day, letting me know that they had a few things to do before coming over but would be with me as soon as possible. This was fine with me, and I relaxed watching a bit of TV. I put J to bed, and waited. It was coming up to 7pm. With a fair way to travel, I thought I best text H's mother and check that everything was ok. They were on their way and wouldn't be long. I did think it weird that they would be popping up to see me so late, but shrugged it off, and waited patiently. I love new baby things, so I was excited for presents!
A little later I heard a knock on the door. I woddled to the door slowly, opening it tiredly. Only one person stood infront of me. Confusion washed over me, I stumbled back. My legs had turned to jelly, I held onto the stairs to keep myself up. I could not believe my eyes. Infront of my stood my fiancé! I don't think I quite gave him the reaction he was hoping for. I looked at him in a daze and asked "What's going on?". He nervously laughed, "It's me baby, I'm home". I lunged myself at him in tears. My countdown bell rang! He was home!
Still in shock, H guided me to the living room and sat me on the sofa. I did not know if I was dreaming. He held my hands together and pulled me closer. He kissed me gently on the lips as I cried tears of happiness.
My wait was over. My soldier had returned, all my prayers answered. He was safe, unharmed and home in time for the birth of our baby boy.
I did not get the excitement, and butterflies that all military WAGs get when waiting for their man to walk through the door after a long tour. I did not get the chance to make myself look beautiful, I didn't even have any makeup on. What a mess I must've looked! H laughed when I moaned about the state I was in, he looked me in the eye and said "Baby, you look gorgeous. You always look gorgeous". This made me blush slightly, as even though we had been together over a year, and I was carrying his child, the moment they come home from a 6 month tour it is like a new relationship. You need to get to know each other all over again. You need to familiarise yourself with their ways, and adjust back into the regular routine of having a partner. I was even slightly coy when it came to him kissing me. This feeling is exciting, and joyful. It makes the wait worth it.
His parents decided to come in for a cup of tea, I was still in a state of shock. I remember sitting there and looking over at my mother-in-law thinking "is this really happening"! They didn't stay for long, and we were left alone. It still felt like a dream. He was so handsome, and tanned. I could've looked at him forever. He touched my belly "Hello chickabean, Daddy is home and cannot wait to meet you". He bent down and kissed my bump gently, looking up at me he reached forward and kissed me on my nose. "I love you, Kirsty". Tears started rolling again, tears of utter happiness. That night I lay in bed, with the knowledge that my man was laying next to me, safe. I fell asleep with his arms around me and a big smile on my face.

I woke during the night with lower back pain. H was concerned but I told him not to be silly. I woke again, "It's ok babe, I'm only having some Braxton Hicks". Braxton Hicks is a term used for mock labour pains that you feel whilst pregnant. They are not labour pains. But as my pains got stronger and regular I started doubting myself. I was in labour, this baby was coming 15 days early! We counted the time between pains, roughly 5 minutes. Having had such a short labour with my first (one and a half hours of established labour) I had been told to call the hospital when first signs of labour were apparent.
I wasn't ready to go into labour. I was so nervous. H ran me a bath to help me relax, and rang my mother to come over to have J (I was unaware that my mum had been in on the whole surprise of H coming home, it wasn't a shock that he rang her. However it may have been a shock that I was in labour). It was 5:30 in the morning and I had been feeling the pain since 4am.
Once my mum was on her way, we rang the hospital to let them know I was coming in, and to fill the birthing pool for me. I could not believe that I was having the baby less than 24 hours after my soldier returned from Afghanistan.
Once it sinked in that I was actually in labour, and that this baby would be here today, I remembered that I had not packed all my things for the hospital bag. In a panic I grabbed all the things I had yet to pack. The pains were bareable, but H did all he could to help me relax. There were things I needed that I hadn't even bought yet. Once my mum arrived to look after J (who had woken during the commotion, and was super excited), she said that she would pop to the shops and grab the few things I needed and drop them into the hospital later that day.
During this time I kept thinking 'Poor H, he has not had any time to adjust back to normality', I worried that he would freak out, and not be able to stay with me during the birth. I quickly blocked that thought out, as the pains became stronger. He told me he was fine, and I kept apologising, which he thought was silly as this labour was out of my control.
We got to the hospital to discover I was only 2 and a half centimetres dilated. Wow, this may be a long wait. I spent the new hour or so bouncing on an exercise ball, and gripping H when the pain came. I said "If you were worried about the taliban, you haven't seen anything yet", he laughed and kissed my forehead. Then at 12 noon, whilst laying on the bed in the hospital watching Philip Schofield on This Morning, I doubled over with pain. Gripping H like a Koala, I curled into a little ball. H rang the buzzer panicing, and a midwife came rushing in. I think I passed out with the pain, either that or I've blocked it from my memory. As I came around, I opened my eyes. "That's what we call a toe curling contraction" the midwife said to me. Not bloody wrong! H tried his best to keep me comfortable.
The midwife examined me, and I was four centimetres. Finally in established labour, that explains the pain. It was time for the gas and air, and the birthing pool. As it was lunchtime, and I was a patient, they offered me a lunch. I was in full blown labour, and wasn't particularly hungry. The midwife said to H "we're not supposed to do this, but as you have just come home from Afghanistan, here's lunch for you". He sat in the corner with his plate of fish and chips, while I moaned and groaned in the birthing pool. Even though I was in a great deal of pain, I felt a sense of pride, the midwife did not need to do that for H, but she did. It hit me that people appreciate what our men do. I wanted to cry, but the pain subtracted that emotion as I was too busy screaming.
I started freaking out when it was finally time to push. I was bobbing up and down in the pool, and couldn't get enough pressure on my feet to push hard enough. "Get me out, get me out" I said in a panic. As I stood out of the pool, as I wanted to push baby out on the bed, my waters broke all over H's new trainers. "Welcome home baby" I said as I giggled. He looked at me mortified, but helped me walk to the wheelchair. Once in the delivery room H helped me onto the bed. It was time. I pushed baby out at 14:34. A two and a half hour labour this time!

H was such a big help during the labour, I could not have pushed baby out without him being next to me. My biggest fear of all whilst he was away, was having to push that baby out knowing that he would not be one of the first people to meet our little guy. I looked over at him, holding our baby boy. His eyes glazed over, happiness pouring out of him. He cwtched T, and tickled his little nose. Relief washed over me.

What a whirlwind of events! I had my hero and my baby boy, all within 24 hours of each other. There was my 'wonderful thought' that I'd been dreaming of. I was overwhelmed with joy.

Monday, 16 May 2011


It was like a dream having him home. I was able to touch his skin, run my fingers through his long hair, and look into his eyes. He was actually in front of me, real!
We had so much to pack into these two weeks. We had our 3D scan, and a few days break in London. Sadly one of H's good friends had died before he came home on leave. He was able to attend his funeral, and asked if I could join him.

I had only met this friend once, and that was in passing. I had dropped H to a local supermarket car park for his friend to pick him up and take him back to camp. The only thing I remember was his friend taking a wrong turning off the roundabout, driving towards my house not the motorway. I giggled the whole time, as I was driving behind them. A quick U-turn and a beep and they were gone (in the right direction I hoped).

During the service I did not know whether to show H sympathy, or leave him be. I stood next to H, but did not hold his hand or touch him in any way. I watched from the corner of my eye his hands shake and the quick movement of wiping away tears. I did not show that I could see, I thought it best that I let him deal with it in his own way. The last thing he needed was sympathy, and me hanging off him. Even though I did not know this soldier who had died, I still cried. To see his parents, his sisters, they all stood there so proud. I heard funny stories of the soldiers cheeky, drunken antics. RIP young soldier.

We had our 3D scan. H was very excited to see him son in putty form (that's how it looked to us). The lady who did the scan was lovely. She double checked the baby's sex for us, and he was definitely a boy. He was very cheeky, it took a while for the little scamp to move his hands from his face. But there he was, he was beautiful. H was so pleased to have had the opportunity to see his baby inside the womb. He would speak to my bump, and kiss it. We had our name, now we just had to wait to meet him. I still prayed every night for H to be home safe, and in time for baby's birth. Homecoming date was forever changing, one moment it was before my due date, then it was after. There was no telling when it would be.

Our trip to London was lovely. We wondered around Covent Garden, and ate lovely meals out. As H was previously based in Wellington Barracks (next door to Buckingham Palace), he knew all the nice places to go. He took me to a comedy club that was one of his favourites, then we ate a gorgeous steak in Sophie's Steakhouse. Our London trip was almost over, R and R was almost over. I did not want either to end. It was almost time for another goodbye, and I could not bare the thought of watching him go again.

Once we arrived back in Cardiff we were in no rush to go back to the house, so instead we decided to extend our alone time by going down Cardiff Bay for a few drinks. H took me into a bar called Terra Nova. He ordered our drinks, mine was a lime and soda water. He then led me up the stairs, and then up some more stairs to the top of the building where there was a "crows nest". As the pubs decor was based around a ship, there of course would be a large round platform named "The Crows Nest". Confeniently the nest was empty. We looked through the windows at the view, I could see my home town across the waters. We sat on high bar stools. As I admired the view, H stood up from his stool and then got down on one knee. I looked down at him, my smile beaming. He held out the most gorgeous white gold ring, and an amazing centre diamond, with four smaller diamonds on each side lining the front of the rings band. "Kirsty, will you marry me?" he asked sheepishly. "YES" of course the answer was yes, the ring was gorgeous for a start, and I loved him very much. He stood up rather sharpish, even though there was no one around he was petrified.

There was no doubt in my mind that H was the man I wanted to marry. Even though I knew he had no plans to leave the army, I accepted that this would be my life for a long time. As long as I had him I was happy. Oh my gosh, I now had a wedding to plan!

Another goodbye! I thought this time it would be easier, as it was time to countdown to his return from this tour for good, but it was still hard. R and R felt like the Army was teasing me. 'Here he is for a couple of weeks, but we'll be snatching him back'! At least I now had a few things to concentrate on - A) Our baby boy B) Our wedding, and C) The countdown.
A few years before meeting H, I had my cards read. A few of the things said had proved to be true, but these were vague comments that, I suppose, could apply to numerous situations. 'A powerful man would try to make you do something that you do not want to do' - My son's fathers dad tried making me have an abortion. 'A hospital bed' but no leads as to why this was there - The unplanned pregnancy of my first son, I did not have the easiest pregnancy as I developed pre-eclampsia which resulted in numerous months of hospital visits and stays. 'You will marry a man in uniform' - Well, J's father was a mechanic, but aspired to join the fire service, "could that be it?" I had thought. Little did I know that my man in uniform would be in bright red with a "muff" on his head (the lovely Bearskin)! She had predicted my marriage to my soulmate. He was the one.


I stayed at my mums for a few weeks after H left. I couldn't bring myself to staying in the house on my own with J.
After I'd dropped H to the train station I drove to my mums. I pulled up outside the house I grew up in, breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. I did not want my mum or J to see me cry, I'm a big girl. So I put on my smiles and went inside. I can save the tears for when I'm alone.

H sent me a text just before he got on the plane, just a little goodbye and that he's going to miss me. I think I read that text about 100 times that night. As J slept next to me, my face only lit by the light of the phone, I sat up in bed and cried. I prayed to the Lord that he would be safe, and that no harm would come to him. Before H left he took me to his sisters church (that he once attended) to say goodbye to a few people, little did I know he was giving his last letters to a close friend. Having been brought up Catholic this church was a whole new experience for me. It was fantastic, it filled me with hope and peace. My faith was restored, and I was able to pray in the knowledge that He was listening.
H's sister had also just had a baby girl, so I decided to continue going to church each week to see my new family. Before H left we also visited his mothers church, this church was similar to the one in Cardiff (both Born Again). Everyone prayed for H, and laid hands on both of us. They prayed for his safe, healthy return, and they prayed for me to find peace and be strong whilst H was away. I cried. It was so moving. Everyone continued praying for H whilst he was away. I prayed every day.

The first night without H was horrible. I was glad of the text I could read over and over. I cried myself to sleep that night, phone in hand.

I didn't hear from H for a few days. We went from talking all day, every day to me watching my mobile and willing for it to ring. I learnt that my phone would become surgically attached to my body. If I missed a call I was heart-broken. Luckily H knew my phone would be near me in some way so he would always phone back in the hope that I'd answer. I always did. After every phone call there is a lull. You say goodbye and sit there for a minute or so just looking at the screen. I tried to imagine the conditions he was in, but it's hard to when you're on a comfortable sofa with friends and family around you.

I had a small network of Army wives to keep in contact with. One being A, the girl I was in university with. Once I found out I was pregnant I made a conscious decision to finish University. Nursing was not for me, and the stress of H being away plus the baby, I did not have the energy. A had already left in the December.
Knowing that there are women in the same boat as you was a comfort, but when they're freaking out it takes a lot to stay calm and strong. I remember the sick rising to my mouth when A text me to ask if H was ok. The first soldier in H's battalion had been killed. I was not H's next of kin, his mother was who lived 20+ miles away. I started freaking out, all I could think was "They're travelling down to tell me, I know they are. There is no way they would call me first because I'd know". I frantically called a close friend who's boyfriend had been on the Herrick before H. I was hysterical and had convinces myself that it was H. Numbly I rang H's parents. There was no answer. I tried to stay calm but my voice trembled as I left a message asking to be called back.
My phone rang, it was H's mother. She calmed me down and reassured me that it was not H. Relief washed over me. Then guilt kicked in, how selfish of me to freak out thinking it was H. Some poor woman has lost her husband, and some poor mother had lost her son. It may have not been my soldier, but it had been someone's. I said a little prayer for the family who had lost they're hero, and prayed for my H.
It was a great comfort for my close friend to knock on my door. She had been there, done that and knew what to say. I suppose you could say she became my knight in shining armour whenever I needed uplifting. I thank her for that.

It was time for my second scan, the scan that can tell you whether you are carrying a little boy or girl. I knew that H wanted a boy, but I was carrying so differently to my last that I thought I may have been having a baby girl. I sat in the waiting room with my mum and H's mother. I looked around at all the other pregnant women, sat with they're boyfriends or husbands. They probably thought I was a single mother, but I wore my Help 4 Heroes band with pride, my baby's dad was doing this country proud.
Once I was in the room and being scanned I asked nervously if the lady could tell me what I was having. Excitement grew inside me, she said the words "You're having a baby boy". I cried tears of joy, I could not wait to tell H the news!
My phone rang almost as soon as I walked out of the scan, it was like he knew. I told him we were having a little boy, I could hear the happiness in his voice. He shouted to everyone in his FOB "I'm having a boy".
I was so pleased that H was so excited, but I knew he wanted to see another scan. I did not need any more scans at the hospital now, so I booked a 3D scan for R and R. It was a lot of money, but worth every penny for my soldier to see his baby.
The date for R and R shone brightly like the light at the end of a tunnel. H was a bit of a silly romantic, he did not want to be picked up, he wanted to get a train home and to just walk in at an unexpected time.
I cleaned the house, made myself look as glamorous as I could with my bulging baby belly. I warned him that I was rather big now, he said he did not care and couldn't wait to feel our baby boy kick. I could not wait for him to give me one of his magical kisses and make my world stop.
I sat anxiously on the sofa. This was it. I placed my hands on my bump "No gruffelo for the next two week chickabean, you can hear the real thing now". I heard the key, the handle. I couldn't sit there and wait for him to walk into the living room, I jumped up and ran into the hallway. It took me a few moments to recognise him. He was very skinny, very tanned and had dirty blonde hair! "Hello baby" he said. I ran up to him and cried, and there it was - he kissed me and my world stopped.

Sunday, 15 May 2011


Our love soared, and I was blooming. I may have only been three months pregnant, but I had a definite little pot on me. I was growing a little baby inside me, his little baby.

I was very nervous of this pregnancy, not having H around. With homecoming date still unknown I couldn't stop thinking about going into labour with him thousands of miles away. 'He hasn't even left yet' I kept telling myself. I touched my belly and felt butterflies "You'll meet your daddy, don't you worry little chickabean".

H had read a few pregnancy books for dads. He bought Chinese chime balls, and told me that when I was feeling happy to roll them in my hand so that baby could hear the chimes, that way when baby is sad once born we can play with them and the noise of the chime will make baby happy. I remember him kissing me and saying "Remember baby, whatever you feel baby feels too so please try not to be upset". These words did make me upset, but also made me feel safe. H was really taking this pregnancy malarky well, and was showing me how much he cared for me and baby. He also read that babies recognise peoples voices once born, this bothered H as he was worried baby wouldn't know his voice. So he chose a book that he loved to read to J, The Gruffelo. He recorded himself reading the book and made me promise that I would play it to my bump over the next six months for baby to know his voice. I didn't solely play this recording for baby to know his voice, I listened to it when calls were rare and I was scared of forgetting the sound of his voice myself. Amazingly I did not get bored of hearing the story, J would often ask me to pay it for his bedtime story, and follow the words in the book with his finger.

H and I went away for a weekend before he deployed for Afghanistan. We stayed in a gorgeous little cottage in North Wales. We used this time to relax and forget what the future promised. For those few days/nights we were just a normal couple. We were able to be ourselves, and not worry. H would run me a bath, and I could relax whilst he started the fire and chose a DVD for that night. We may not have spoken about what was coming, but it was always there when I was alone, and during the quiet moments. We would cuddle on the sofa, my head on his chest, and silent tears would tumble down my cheeks. It was nearly time.

One night we lay in bed, talking about Afghanistan. Soldiers try to be hard, and terminator-like, but no matter how prepared you are, going to war is a very scary prospect. With his arms around me, a hand touching my belly, we lay there and cried. He may have only let a few tears fall but it was enough for me to know that he was human, and he wasn't a machine that was built for war. No soldier wants to die, but (as H says) they all know what they signed up for and they know there is dangers in the job.

The dreaded day came. It came too soon. I had to drop H to the train station where one of the boys was going to pick him up. There wasn't much to talk about that morning, I think H was worried to speak incase I broke down into tears again.

We got to the train station earlier than the arranged time. Neither of us had eaten breakfast, so we went to McDonalds for some food. Once we had eaten all I could think was 'Oh my gosh, this could be our last meal together, and it was McDonalds'!! We drove back to the train station then and waited for the boy to come and pick H up. I can't describe the feeling you get when it's time to say goodbye. It's more than a knot in your stomach, it's the feeling of dread and hope rolled into one. I looked into his eyes, praying silently for his safe return. He held my face with one hand and kissed me. It was the kind of kiss where neither of you want to pull away. In that moment you want the world to stop, so that what happens next never comes.

H's lift pulled in next to my car. This is it. I watched H take his bags from my boot and load his friends car. I breathed in through my nose and out through my mouth. The tears filled my eyes, but I smiled at H, I did not want his last image of me to be a broken woman, sobbing into her steering wheel! I do not remember who pulled away first, but that was the moment he was gone. That may have been the last time I kiss his perfectly shaped lips, or look into his gorgeous green eyes. The tears rolled all the way home. "Think of a wonderful thought"!


I would like to put a few "names" into my blogs...

'H' is for my partner, standing for Husband.

'J' is my little boy

'T' will soon stand for the baby

I thought I best let you all know for future reference!
Thank you all for reading, I have had great feedback!

There is more to come...

Wednesday, 4 May 2011


The love between my husband and I developed quickly. Even though I knew from our first (remembered) kiss that he was someone very special, it took me a while to say the words. I say a while... A month at most, which is a while after the initial feeling of giddiness and butterflies, and the world stopping around you!
I remember the night I said it. It was our first weekend apart since meeting. He had stupid barrack guard! The thought of a weekend without him hit me like a thousand knives. I did not want to be sleeping in my bed alone on a Saturday night, not when our weekends were sacred. So I decided to join my family on a night out down the pub. It was karaoke, a favourite of mine (I was to learn).
After a few pints, I was a classy girl back then. A gay friend Bryn, put us down to see a duet. Lionel and Diana's Endless Love. I was texting my fella all night and told him I had to sing. He told me I was to ring him and leave my phone on the table so he could listen. I was extremely nervous, as the last time I had sung in public I was in college studying Performing Arts, and I was upset during the whole thing as my dad did not look up at me once while I sang. I was later told it was because he was crying.
So, the DJ announced it was my time. I rang my man and left my phone. Bryn and I had a blast, it was a rush and I loved it. From then on I wasn't only my man's "Little Scrumpet", I was also his "Fallen Star".
After a few more drinks, I rang him. I don't remember how or in what context I said it but the words "I love you" were said. And the feeling of joy and happiness is remembered as the words were repeated back to me!
The next morning when we spoke on the phone nothing was mentioned about the previous nights announcement. I was a bit gutted. So I said "I do remember what I said last night". I remember hearing the relief in his voice as it was realised that I hadn't said it as a drunken statement. I suppose from then it was official, love was in the air.

The run up to Christmas was manic that year. I had a new man to buy for and an over excited four year old. The Christmas spirit was alive.
I had no idea what my man was buying me, but I had been given a clue as to what my most special gift was - 'It is yours to keep forever, you may never touch it or hold it, but at times you will be able to look at it'. What could it be? I am useless at guessing, so I had to just wait.
I was so excited, our first Christmas together. When Christmas came, we stayed at my mothers on the Christmas Eve. We watched my son open his mountain of presents, then drove home alone to open our gifts to each other together. I was like a child again. We opened our gifts one by one, taking it in turns. He handed me a DVD sized gift, however it was thicker so I knew it couldn't be a DVD. I opened the wrapping carefully, I was so excited that I actually wanted to just rip it to shreds, but I had to remain ladylike. And there it was. Around a silver metal box was a black slip with a star on it. He had bought me a star, named it after me. He said that he bought it for me as I was his star, but also because he was due to deploy that coming April, and now wherever we are, we both know that we are under the same sky looking at the same stars. What a beautiful gift! Amongst my many gifts was also something I will treasure, a bracelet with the words 'Think a wonderful thought'. He told me that he bought me this so that when he is away I can look at it as a prompt to remember the good times. Whilst the tears were rolling, it did not make it stop, but it did make ne smile underneath them.

The new year was upon us now, celebrated with champagne and strawberries. This year did not only present exciting things, it was also the year of situations I never thought I'd find myself in, and never belief myself strong enough to get through them!
It was the beginning of February, and we had been invited up to camp for families day, a day for us to learn more about what our men would be doing whilst in Afghanistan. For my four year old son it was exciting, it was tanks, guns and helicopters. My son then believed that camp was Afghanistan, his stepdad was in no real danger he had a room and a bed. It's merely the goodies against the baddies, a cartoon. To me it was all tanks, guns and helicopters, which equalled war, a very serious one too. The day was held for us to understand more, I did not understand at all. It was all frightening. I felt nauseous, and could not eat. Was this the effects of being presented with material for war? However, watching my man with a gun was rather sexy, infact VERY sexy!
It was now Friday the 13th. A bad omen for some, however not for us. I had, for the second time in my life, left a stick on the floor of my bathroom and run. This time it was because he wanted to see first. I sat on the bed anxious. He strolled into the bedroom, head shaking, test in hand. He looked up at me, his eyes do not lie. He grinned, bounced towards me, jumped onto the bed! We were pregnant! We giggled and were very excited. Wow. One thing scared me, upon hearing my due date from the midwife, neither of us knew if he would be home for the birth. This is one thing we would have to pray for.
I was due October 17th, a week before my sons birthday.

I spoke to my midwife and they brought my first scan forward a week to ensure that my boyfriend would be there for it. He was due to deploy a week or so after my scan was booked in.
I was already showing, and only suffering slightly with morning sickness. As this was my man's first, he wasn't sure what to expect, so I was waited on hand and foot whilst he was home. It was lovely.
Despite the happy pregnancy hormone floating around my body, deployment lurked. I cried, a possible effect of pregnancy? Hardly, I cried before I was pregnant. 6 months sounded like such a long time. However the months leading up to his deployment date sounded like minutes. This time was precious.
We went for our scan. There 'it' was. Our little baby. It's heart flickering on the screen. I could have cried, but I held back. My man was so happy that he was able to be there, you could see the happiness in his face. His baby. The radiographer printed off extra pictures of our little "chickabean" for my man to take to Afghanistan with him. We took the images and had them laminated. He placed them carefully in his notebook. They would keep his morale high, the thought that he was coming home to his baby, enough to keep anyone alive.

After seeing our baby, it became real. I was pregnant and within weeks my man was deploying to war. All I could do was pray, and then pray harder.