Pregnant in Koné

The last 12 weeks have been long and somewhat tiring but with good reason…baby #2 is growing as we speak. I have been too sick to write any blogs or even fathom thinking of something interesting to write about. But as the morning sickness aka all day sickness seems to be turning into morning sickness I can now tell you about the whole process of being pregnant in New Caledonia.
First of all you see a sage-femme or midwife not a general practitioner. I have seen the sage-femme twice now and have two cute little ultrasound pictures to go with it. At these appointments they are pretty much the same as in Canada. General medical history, checking your weight, blood pressure and general discussion about how you are feeling. Some of the differences between here and Canada are the length of your pregnancy, 40 weeks at home, 42 weeks here. The fact that you receive a document called the ‘declaration of pregnancy’ for your insurance. This is proof that you are indeed pregnant. You have ultrasounds at 12, 22 and 32 weeks, with Seth I had one at 20 weeks. The care is very good though. No complaints here.
Of course having a baby as an expat does present some challenges. You have the obvious no family around to give you help. No calling my mom to ask her to stop over or make a meal. Then there is the whole language issue. I speak French well but like I said before there is a difference between my French and the French here. Sometimes it lends itself to small misunderstandings. And finally there is the challenge of actually giving birth. There is no hospital in Koné. You can have your baby in Koumac, at the Centre Hospitalier du Nord site de Koumac, about 100 kms north of Koné or in Nouméa at one of three places the Polyclinique de L’Anse Vata, the Clinique Magnin or the Centre Hospitalier Territorial de Magenta. They recommend you move to Nouméa one month before your due date so that you will be close when it is time to give birth. This means renting an apartment style hotel for a month, quite the cost! Not to mention that Seth would stay with me and Keith would be in Koné Monday- Friday working. This in itself presents many logistical problems such as the 300kms between the two places and what to do with a two year old if I go into labour on a weekday. The great thing about pregnancy is that you have time to figure these things out.
So for now, we will just enjoy the bliss of knowing that we are going to be parents again and that Seth will have a sibling in May. We are pretty happy!

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