Self-isolating and pregnant: 'I’m trying to take it one day at a time'

Twelve weeks isolation? Twelve weeks! I expected some changes when I became pregnant but TWELVE WEEKS trying to keep away from everyone.

I’m sure I wasn’t alone in feeling like that when the Prime Minister dropped the pregnancy bombshell during the latest wave of coronavirus measures.

Now, the thing is, I get it. I really do. The priority is my unborn child and, like any mum-to-be, I don’t want to do anything that would risk his or her health.

Credit: Alex Hartley

But that doesn’t make the prospect of 12 weeks away from friends, family, normal life, any easier to swallow.

It’s the same for anyone deemed "at risk", I imagine.

A week or so ago the terms "self isolation", "social distancing" and "lockdown" were more Hollywood than Holyhead.

But we are where we are and we all have a role to play.

Saying that, it’s all been little overwhelming (I’m blaming the pregnancy hormones).

So now, I have a million questions and a million and one concerns - as you probably do too given that you’re still reading.

Can my son still go to nursery? If he is exposed - that risks me being exposed, right? And I'm not sure a two year old will understand if his mum has to self isolate from him.

What about my husband? He's terrified of bringing back any virus to our unborn child. Fortunately he can work from home.

I guess my parents and in-laws, who are our childcare support, are out of the question for a while now too, given their age. But for how long must they stay away?

I'm currently 23 weeks pregnant Credit: Alex Hartley

The logistics and impacts are off the chart.

It's scary.

Given that it’s all changing so fast I’m trying to take it one day at a time and focus on the positives and hoping for more clarity and answers in the days to come.

What gives me comfort, is the fact that I'm not alone.

In Wales, there’s an estimated 30,000 pregnant women a year…and for every one of us, the pressure is mounting.

We all need to stick together. Neighbours, friends, communities as we have already seen right across the country.

Like my lovely neighbour who just dropped off some milk. Or the friend who just popped a bar of chocolate through the door. Little things that mean the world and we can all do our bit.

The next few days, weeks and months are going to be a juggle. But this is going to affect us all in different ways and we are all in it together.

Pregnant women have been 'strongly advised to undertake social distancing measures for 12 weeks Credit: PA
  • What to do:

Work - Speak to your line manager and discuss your options. Can you work from home? Adapt your role?

Health - If you have any pregnancy concerns speak to Public Health Wales or your GP or midwife.

Mental Wellbeing - Stay connected to friends and family - Facetime, WhatsApp, Skype.

Fitness - As long as you keep your distance from people, you can still get fresh air and exercise... and there are plenty of free online pregnancy fitness and yoga videos too.

  • Advice:

There's lots of conflicting advice at the moment and everyone has very different circumstances. But here's what the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists are saying.

And here's the Government's advice for pregnant women:

  • Avoid contact with someone who is displaying symptoms of coronavirus. These symptoms include high temperature and/or new and continuous cough;

  • Avoid non-essential use of public transport, varying your travel times to avoid rush hour, when possible; Work from home, where possible. Your employer should support you to do this

  • Avoid large gatherings, and gatherings in smaller public spaces such as pubs, cinemas, restaurants, theatres, bars, clubs

  • Avoid gatherings with friends and family. Keep in touch using remote technology such as phone, internet, and social media

  • Use telephone or online services to contact your GP or other essential services

I’d love to hear your stories and welcome any tips for entertaining toddlers and keeping sane in the weeks ahead! Send your videos to - or tweet me: @AlexCHartley.