Advice Smackdown UPDATE: On Timing a Pregnancy Around a Parent’s Illness



Hi Amy,

I hope you’re not reading this as it’s Thanksgiving but I just wanted to share a little update on my problem about baby timing and an ill parent. (“Goodbye, Hello“)

Well, what happened was I showed my husband my letter and your response, we both cried a lot, did the maternity pay maths and then decided to get started on the baby making plan.

One cycle later I got pregnant! It’s still really early days but now I’m actually pregnant, I feel 100 per cent sure that we do in fact want a baby right now, so getting started trying was definitely the right call.

Telling my mum will always be one of my very favourite memories. We found out the day before her birthday so I got to tell her on her birthday and, oh, her face! She started instantly crying and shrieking and was just so happy. It was a really great evening and nice to have some good news amid all the bad cancer news.

Of course, a few days later she was hospitalised for 10 days with an infection and that was pretty grim, but that’s just how life will be for a while I guess – happy/sad.

I know it’s early days for an update (I’d have loved to be able to wait until after the 12 week scan), but I wanted to update while the news is good (and even if we lost this baby, I think we’ve definitely reached resolution about whether we want one now or not).

Thanks so much for your wonderful advice.

As I already told “Kate” (although now I know her real name and feel all speshul) when I emailed to ask permission to post this update publicly, the Advice Smackdown email queue is so overloaded right now that I did NOT read her note on Thanksgiving at all. I read it on Friday, on my birthday, which made it extra exciting and warm-y awesome-y feeling.

“Telling my mum will always be one of my very favourite memories.” This. THIS! What a wonderful way to look at that moment and every similar moment going forward. Wring out every good memory you can, and soak them in. Whatever happens down the road doesn’t need to have any impact or bearing on what happens today. Today there is hope and happiness, and tomorrow can suck it, frankly. If I may once again pull out another Steel Magnolias (I KNOW I KNOW) quote: Miss Clairee, there are still good times to be had. 

Congratulations, dear OP. I’m really, really thrilled for you and think you definitely, 100% made the right decision. (It was the decision I sensed you wanted to make, but tried to stop short of ordering you to stop stressing and go get yourself knocked up already.) Obviously, we’ll all be pulling for your mom to recover and pull through and meet her grandchild, but regardless of what happens, I wish you all many lifetimes’ worth of happy, favorite memories.

About the author

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy's daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it's pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

Subscribe to posts by Amalah

Comments are closed.

Follow us on Google+