GET IN TOUCH & MATERNITY
Regularly, GiT spouses come with happy announcements .. pregnancies, expecting first (or second) borns, starting up new families. Unfortunately sometimes less cheerful messages as well .. miscarriages or longing for babies, but not always lucky yet. Child care and managing your precious time with toddlers and children, although you love them to bits, are also topics of conversation. Sharing all these valuable ‘mummy’ issues, exciting babyshowers & pregnancy parties or helping out in distress .. it all became part of our growing GiT Family :)!
Melda Onurak Köksal
Yes, I’m pregnant and I’m living abroad. I can speak very little of the language of the country where I am living. I wonder if this will be a problem or not? This question was always on my mind, since the first day of learning about my pregnancy.
When I found out that I was pregnant, firstly, I went to the family doctor. I had an interesting appointment with him.
Because he only did a physical checkup and then, with a stethoscope listened to my tummy and understood that I was pregnant. I found this strange because in my country they always check with a blood test and an ultrasound.
After the appointment, he directed me to the city hospital because of the situation with my allergies. If you do not have any health issues, you are not necessarily directed to the hospital. Instead you have to use the pregnancy centers operated by midwifes.
I think that my pregnancy is going along very comfortably, here in the Netherlands. I rode my bike until the 5th month of my pregnancy. After the 5th month, I was a little worried and I quit riding the bike and went everywhere by foot or by bus. If it is the first baby, you’re likely to wonder about the gender. It is the health policy in the Netherlands to not tell the baby’s gender before the 20th week of pregnancy. It is also common that you cannot see your baby via ultrasound every time you wish. Some tests have to be done at certain weeks and those times are good opportunities to see the baby. At other times you can hear your baby’s heartbeat with a tool.
If you are under the age of 35, your insurance does not cover certain tests. If you still want to have these tests, you need to accept additional charges. There is a different midwife taking care of you, every time you go to the hospital for the regular checkups. I think this is because one can notice something important that another had not.
After my first appointment at the hospital, I was given a phone number and many brochures. In the brochure the phone numbers necessary for emergency situations were written down. When you don’t feel well, for example in the middle of the night, you call that number and they prepare your file and they really take care of you. I was very comfortable about this.
The hospital is very well located inside the city so we could be there in 15 minutes.
Now I’m in the last month. I have begun to count the days.
Melda Onurak Köksal
When you move to another country as an expat, the first months pass getting use to the new environment, placing your furniture and clothes to your new house. After these months, you need to find a network and new friends to chat and to have fun. For this, spouse groups are great communities to join. I found the GIT spouse group with the suggestion of a friend. I’m so glad for finding. In this group one of the workshops was about our future plans. Plan A, Plan B, Plan C… I was working as a teacher in my country and I had to quit my job to move to Eindhoven. So that my plan A was to find a job, but as I could not speak the Dutch language, the result was not so inspiring. In order to work in public schools, my diploma has to be approved by Dutch authorities and it would take time. I postponed my plan A for six months, because of that.
The baby is coming 🙂
In that workshop, my plan B was: to have a baby…and plan B got real. I learned this great news while I was in my country for holiday and it was wonderful to share the feelings with them. We were returning to our new home as three instead of going there as two. I had lots of questions in my mind. Being an expat, in addition to that, being a pregnant expat. Then we came back to Eindhoven. I found another surprise in Eindhoven. I found a part time job. Lessons learned: instead of trying to control the future, we should seize the day and be patient.J Everything finds its way in time.
Melda Onurak Köksal
To be continued…