Ever changing seasons

We are reading a book at the moment about  positive parenting. There is a part of it where the author compares all the little developmental stages to seasons and says that we are all guilty of wishing away the current season to get to the next, instead we should relish and absorb every second of the season we are in as you will only look back and want the time back.

I am guilty of this and I am going to stop it. Already I notice that we get less cuddles and more awake and alert time. When we got cuddles after feeds I’d wish for free hand time, now I miss my cuddles!

Leo’s latest and most obvious progress is in his sleep again. He seems to have got used to his wind for now and can deal with it without drama at night. He has had a few nights of 6 or even 7 hours then 2.5 to 3 after that. Last night we had 4hrs then 4.5! He’s obviously managing to take a lot more milk on each feed.

He was a little unhappy yesterday though, not sure why. He seemed in pain, I had tummy ache though so maybe we had a little bug. Fingers crossed he’s OK today as I have physio to try and ease this horrible shoulder blade pain and the new knee pain I’m struggling with. We then have baby sensory, then we are visiting the new farm shop The Lambing Shed and then we are walking with the girls. If he is upset still I won’t be doing any, he currently seems pretty happy though so fingers crossed.

Right, now to stop wishing my baby’s seasons away and relish in the present!

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Life in the fast lane

Prepping for it

Today we were incredibly lucky to be treated to a track day at Silverstone by our friends who own an amazing Nissan GTR. We travelled down yesterday afternoon and stayed in a hotel about half an hour away from the track as we had to be there for 7.30

We met our friends there and then got cracking after the briefing. I’d imagine they don’t have many briefings with tiny babies present!

It’s an amazing car, insanely powerful and just so exciting to drive. Tom was absolutely amazing, really proud of him. All those hours playing on his game around that track have paid off, as well as being amazing at anything he turns his hands to.

We took it in turns to be up in the restaurant with the babies as it was quieter and warmer, although we did both have ear defenders for the little ones for walking from the pits to the restaurant. The weather was perfect for driving, really clear and dry 👌

We left the track about 5pm and Leo was fine when we left, he was immediately not fine once driving. The time from 5pm till about 7.30pm is what I call feeding frenzy o’clock and unfortunately, it really upset him for most of the journey. We kept stopping and I used every trick in the book to entertain him and we staved a meltdown off until about 15 mins away from home and he really had had enough. It took so long to settle him and we had to limp the rest of the way home.

We won’t make the mistake of travelling him at this time again, it’s unfairn on him. We was everso patient and went off beautifully when we got home and slept for a 7hr stint.

It’s all a learning curve and he knew we were there for him for that time so it won’t have had any last detrimental affect on him, it’s just our job to avoid it happening again.

Just you wait

If I had recorded how many times someone had said to me “just you wait” when I had an opinion on how I wanted to be as a parent (and what it was about) , it would be an amusing thing to look back at.. Basically everything that created a “just you wait” response, I have totally gone back on my opinion.

A few that I can think of off the top of my head

1. Not getting around to using the reusable nappies as disposable ones are just so good and easy

2. Not having your baby in bed with you

3. Not socialising all the time with people you have met through baby classes

4. Not singing nursery rhymes

5. Not playing nursery rhymes in the car

6. Not enjoying the baby classes and singing

7. Going back to work for KIT days won’t be a problem

8. Sticking to my healthy eating plan and exercising regularly

And the list goes on and will undoubtedly be added to every single day!

It’s basically down to the fact that you can’t comprehend how driven you are to make you beautiful baby happy that you are willing to forgo anything you used to class as important if it gets in the way of that happening.. It’s a good thing, it’s the ultimate selfless act and I am astounded by anyone that doesn’t fall into this trap and I am sure the “just you wait” affect will continue until the end of time

Motherhood is brutal

No one prepares you for it, yes they say your life will never be the same again but they miss out the key elements of why.

It is so incredibly tough on the mother physically from the moment you get pregnant. I was lucky to not suffer with morning sickness or anything physical throughout my entire pregnancy so in that respect, I avoided a lot of suffering scores of women have to go through. I did struggle with bump pain when exercising from quite early on though and had to stop sleeping on my front from quite early,  and I love sleeping on my front.

Latterly, I also had to stop sleeping on my back and switch to sleeping on my left side. I weaned myself off sleeping on my left side many years ago after damaging my shoulder by doing just that. Damage that took 2 years to fully heal!

I was also lucky that my sleep wasn’t disrupted through pregnancy, a lot of women aren’t so lucky.

You then have childbirth, this obviously puts you through a lot of physical trauma and then you don’t even get to sleep it off!

Then comes the mental challenge of being taken away from the life you knew that existed as just you and your partner in a perfect little bubble to basically living relatively separate lives. Your sleep is broken, you’re in pain from labour, you have no idea what you are doing and you spend your entire time checking your little bundle is breathing when they are sleeping!

You still can’t sleep on your tummy as your boobs are so damned bug and painful that you would be in agony, you then can’t sleep comfortably on your side after forcing yourself to get used to it because you don’t want to damage your unnecessarily huge boobs.. So, back sleeping it is.. But hang on, your back is so utterly crucified from all the crazy positions you find yourself sitting in with your ever increasing mass of baby, that back sleeping is now uncomfortable and you can’t sleep anyway.

I am lying here, unable to be under the covers properly because my skin on my nipple is so sensitive to the slightest but of rough material, I can’t curl up on my side as I don’t want to kick off my mastitis, lying on my back is killing my shoulders as I desperately need to see the chiropractor and my lower back is done in from lifting and holding my little pudding for the last 8 weeks.

Tom and I get no us time and I haven’t had any me time for 8 weeks, not to even put a wash on and tidy in a none rushed, mad panic. I am incredibly lucky that Tom is an amazing man, totally devoted to his family and new life but I see now why so many men wander at this critical point as they are basically on the side lines in all of this for the majority of the time and have had their world turned upside down too..

HOWEVER

This is all temporary and we just have to remember that this is a special time that won’t ever come back, regardless of the mild discomfort you feel on a daily basis, every time your little baby looks as you and smiles and giggles, none of that matters. By the time I have the luxury of sleeping normally, drinking again, loving time with my husband etc, I will be wishing I was living it all over again.

They truly are a gift that nothing can compare to, so why should it all be plain sailing? You wouldn’t appreciate the special moments in quite the same way if it were!

Although, lying here listening to my little steam train next to me, I do wish I could’ve got to sleep after his last feed as now I don’t stand a chance!

Smiling little munchkin

I was expecting an unhappy baby this morning, but what I got was a very smily, happy baby. I still didn’t bother taking him to swimming as I couldn’t face the drama after of changing them when they are so upset, especially if he wasn’t feeling totally right.

I also noticed something new, I was playing with him on my knees and bouncing him up and down and he was laughing. This is the first time it has been a genuine laugh in response to an action, rather than just giggles. #proudmummymoment

I’ve treated myself to some bigger bras in the hope it will help my boob pains. Have been pretty much the same today, he just doesn’t feed very effectively when we are out which doesn’t help!

Unfortunately, I woke him up from a little map to go and see the girls at lunch and he was mightily unimpressed with my attempts to get him in the car straight away. I had to take him in and out a few times, popped his dummy in as a last resort, he spat it out and settled! He was totally fine at lunch but started to get a little but grizzly towards the 2 hour mark so I brought him home. He did some shouting and being upset so I just gave him another dose of calpol, he pooped and settled a bit. He then started fussing again so I put him in the boba sling.. Pretty much immediately fell asleep and after about ten minutes there has been some almighty downstairs rumbling and action. It hasn’t leaked as far as I can tell so I am risking keeping him bundled up and sleeping for now!

It’s done…

.. for now at least

He was a very brave little man having his jabs and mummy cuddles made him soon forget about it and was smiling at people in the surgery a few min after.

Don’t get me wrong, he screamed a scream no mothers wants to hear and he was in floods of tears, something he rarely does! Obviously that made me cry too!!

I took him straight home after and he slept, when he woke he would cry a lot and then go back to sleep. This lasted until around 8pm at which point he settled into his cot nicely. He stirred around 11.30 but not upset, he fed for about 5 mins and then went back to sleep.. However, my boobs are playing up again as I was out the house for quite a while with classes, lunch then doctors so I am back massaging and expressing.. I feel like I am going to be chained to an expressing machine for the next year!

I have just woken him up for his next round of calpol but his temperature is still normal. They advise to give them the third dose regardless and then after that just monitor temperature.

He is supposed to be swimming tomorrow, I will see how he is in the morning but potentially won’t go anyway as I need to concentrate on my boobs or I will have problems this weekend.

Never a dull moment

Absolutely nothing to do with this post, just a cutie pie in ear defenders

Since coming back from our weekend away, Leo has seemed a little unsettled and clingy. I’m not sure if this is simply his developmental stage or because his weekend away threw him a little. All I can do is be there for him.

Boobs are still not totally OK, the occasional shooting pain is still coming on in both and my supply is down when I express. Doctors appointment tomorrow morning.

It’s been bothering me that maybe Leo is unsettled because he is hungry so I took him for a weigh in at the children’s centre. He’s 14lb 1oz so it isn’t affecting his weight if it is.

I managed to fall down the stairs last night whilst carrying Leo. If that’s not fuel for a catastrophic thinker then I don’t know what is! Luckily, it was only the last couple and I managed to take the brunt on my ankle and land on my bum then back with Leo none the wiser on top of me!

I don’t appear to have done too much damage, it’s a bit swollen but could’ve been considerably worse!

He seems to be getting back to himself today anyway, lots of chatting and cooing,  just in time for injections! 😔 My friend Tina was going to come with me but I decided that everyone else managed by themselves so I’m just going to man up!

So, this is nice!

Birthday cuddles for daddy

We arranged a while ago to travel over to Lincolnshire to see Tom’s family for his birthday weekend, first family overnight away adventure!

I was a little worried how Leo would take to sleeping in a new place and the long journey etc.. Didn’t need to be, he slept in the car beautifully and slept like an angel in his travel cot. The only issue we have encountered is me!

I’ve been fighting a cold since Monday and that decided it wanted to get me on Friday so I’ve been doing my best to save that off, I seemed to be feeling a lot better on Sunday morning but then I noticed I had developed an overly sensitive left breast and realising it was quite hard too.. The dreaded mastitis starting was my guess.. So deautifully massaging and feeding off this breast and it’s helping a lot and I assumed my right breast would be OK as it’s the quieter of the two anyway.. Big mistake

Right boob is like a lead weight and will not soften. Both are incredibly reluctant to empty using the express machine and right side is now exceptionally bad. It’s now early hours Monday morning and nowhere around here would have anything I wanted even if it was open. I am not sure how I can express on the way home as I will need to plug the machine in, will have to see if there is a mothercare near here and buy a manual pump as three hours is too long to go without pumping and Leo won’t take enough off me in the day in one sitting to drain them!

Catastrophic thinking

I have always been a worse case scenario thought sufferer, I have never bothered to read about it until now though as it isn’t a life show stopper for me.

However, since having Leo, my brain has even more fodder.. Again, not causing me uncontrollable anxiety but I decided I wanted to understand what this is.

It is known as catastrophic thinking. It’s when you have totally irrational thoughts based on specific events. The one I always have is when I can’t get hold of someone, I immediately assume the worst and that they have been involved in some horrible accident. Since Tom has been working in the city centre, when I can’t get hold of him I immediately assume there has been some sort of terrorist attack and he has been caught up in it. 😲

Now that I have this precious little bundle to look after, my brain goes into overdrive. I will be at a junction and thoughts of a vehicle colliding with me and turning the car over are rife.. I imagine me being killed and my little man growing up not knowing me and me never seeing this wonderful little person grow into an amazing man. I imagine how Tom would cope and I reassure myself that Tom is an amazing dad and would do a perfect job of bringing Leo up whilst telling him all about his mummy and how much she loved him. Seriously?!

I also imagine when I’m carrying him that I am going to drop him on the hard floor and he be smashed into pieces.

All really grim as you can see and reading up on it, it seems I already do the only thing that is suggested to cope and that is by rationalising with myself as to what the chances are of these possible outcomes and putting limits in place for the issues I have when I can’t contact someone. We have trackers on our phones that we can use to find each other and I know if his phone has service for me to find him that he hasn’t been blown up at least!

What I’d really like to do is stop these thoughts from being there in the first place. I think the only way to do that is to identify if something has ever happened to trigger this thought process and work through that. I can think of nothing, I have had a terrible worse case accident with one of my horses and sadly he did die, but this thinking preceded this event so I am unsure. Maybe just an overactive imagination and too much media.

I avoid listening and reading the news at all costs now as this is brain fodder. I remember as a young child watching something on the news when the Iraq war was first really kicking off and America was sending in the troops. They mentioned chemical warfare and the distress this injected into my young brain was palpable. Since that day I avoid anything war related, including fictional films as I just can’t handle it. I find myself trying to plan how I would avoid harm for myself and my family I’m the same scenarios.

Luckily, I seem to have a natural coping mechanism at hand but I would love to understand it more. I think when I am back at work I may well invest in some shrink sessions to do just that.. Until then, I will continue to horrify myself with what my imagination is capable of!