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You’ll get her back…

Before I had a baby, I was definitely very different to after I had a baby.

It wasn’t actually that quick…the transition, but it happened. I never wanted to be one of “them” mums, rocking the “mum bun”, leggings and wiping kids snot with my sleeve. But becoming “that mum” was inevitable.

Now I think I’ve had a successful day if I’ve brushed my hair before wrapping it up in a bun, leggings are me “dressing up” and my sleeve has wiped more things that just snot.

I joke about it, because on the surface it is all part of being a mum, sacrificing the daily shower for questioning whether you can use dry shampoo six days in a row. Swapping sleepless nights out on the town for sleepless nights where you could hand your baby to a passing stranger just for a solid hour.

Plus it’s acceptable, that’s what happens when you have a child and if you’re like me and fit three children into three years, you definitely won’t have time for painting your nails.

It’s easy to get caught up in life as a mum and not give your appearance a second look, I mean you have this amazing little person in your life to love more than anything in the world. But suddenly you look in the mirror and don’t recognise the tired, ungroomed person staring back at you. It’s obvious what’s happened, your priorities have changed and with that you’ve sacrificed a lot of yourself for your child and that doesn’t mean you’ve let yourself go, it makes you’re an amazing mother who has put her child before herself.

I remember a time, I went out for coffee and adult conversation didn’t seem like a luxury, I’d be dressed up everyday, because back then I didn’t see wearing make-up as a luxury. Now I find my self make-up free, sat in public places Breast feeding, making werewolf sounds with my 2 year old and pretending to get caught in Spiderman’s web by my three year old, it’s safe to say I have changed.

Grown up conversation now-a-days isn’t really that grown up, because all my grown up friends have babies, so our conversations are about babies…even when the babies aren’t there.

Don’t get me wrong, being a mum is the best feeling ever, I love it. I wouldn’t change a single stretch mark, tear or laugh because it’s the most amazing experience of my life. But sometimes, just sometimes, I feel like I’ve lost my identity to the name Mum. Sometimes I want to say my name is Emma as well as Mum.

But then I remember I have a 3 year old, 2 year old and 4 month old. It’s still early days, they are still so little, they still completely need me.

But one day they won’t……

I’ll always be their mum, but one day they will grow up and won’t fully depend on me and I’ll wish more than anything that they did. I’ll want them to need looking after by mummy again and that feeling is more important to me than getting back the luxuries of life without dependant little people, I will get that back again…eventually.

But once my little ones are grown up I won’t get this time back again.

So if you feel all consumed by being a mum, like you’ve lost the person you used to be, just remember, you’ll never get this time back with your little one again, but as for the person you lost, you will get her back…eventually.

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Two toddlers and baby…with Bronchiolitis

Adjusting to life with three kids has had it’s difficulties but considering I has a Cesaraen and struggled through a painful first few weeks of Breastfeeding, adding a third child into the mix with a 1 year old and 2 year old hasn’t been as earth shattering as I had made it in my mind.

It seems I was given a peaceful couple of months, Nicole was sleeping through and the boys have always been great sleepers, that was until they all came down with Bronchiolitis.

If you’ve never seen a 10 week old baby with Bronchiolitis, it’s heartbreaking. It is equally as devastating to see my boys poorly too, but they can at least clear their own airways or let me know when they are feeling sore or poorly. Poor little Nicole is just suffering and has no idea why, she has lost her voice and can’t lay flat with out looking like she is drowning on fresh air.

I kept them in the house for three days thinking it was a virus, but they just seemed to get worse. So by the Monday it had been five days, I got the first appointment I could at the doctors, ventured on the thirty minute walk in the freezing cold only to be told it need to run it’s course…which could be up to three weeks! Apparently the only other option is hospital admission, don’t get me wrong I’d rather them not need medication, but it was heartbreaking knowing I couldn’t give them more than Calpol to make them feel better.

So now we’re tucked up watching Christmas films and letting it “run it’s course”, whilst Jack cries anytime Nicole coughs and Mikey cries anytime Jack cries, there’s a domino effect happening approximately every 2 hours of tears, then snot, then coughing and finished by vomiting, it’s not a fun cycle.

Everyone told me having three kids under three would be difficult, it isn’t I love it…what’s difficult is seeing them all poorly, I can’t wait to get my happy healthy babies back to themselves once this has run it’s course.

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My Feeding Battle

I’ve been considering writing this post for a few weeks now, but felt unsure how to go about it.

I’m not pro-breast feeding per say, I’d say I’m pro-feeding, but the problem is as soon as you start writing about breastfeeding people think you’re anti-formula, which isn’t the case at all. I’m currently breastfeeding Nicole, but I’ve formula fed, I’ve bottle fed expressed milk and I’ve breastfed, they were all great and all difficult for different reasons, so I thought I’d write my take on each of them.

I’ll start with saying breastfeeding is much harder than I thought it would be, the four things that tipped the scale for me in the favour of breast feeding were:

  1. No going downstairs in the night to make bottles up
  2. No washing and sterilising bottles
  3. No-one else can do it
  4. You don’t have to prepare and take bottles out with you

But I never realised the battle that can be involved with breastfeeding, my first son was 10 weeks premature and never latched, I tried and tried but the sucking reflex just wasn’t there, it was heartbreaking and frustrating.

My second son was premature but eventually latched, but it took a few weeks to get him exclusively breastfeeding, I gave him bottles occasionally, but the teat and nipple confusion made it more difficult.

Then I had Nicole, I was fully aware she might be my last so I really wanted to exclusively breastfeed, just as a personal goal for myself.

She is now nearly 10 weeks old and hasn’t had one bottle, but oh my the first three weeks were so hard. My nipples were blistered and bleeding, from where she hadn’t been latching properly, I got Mastitis (ouch!) and she was feeding every two hours, plus no-one else can do it, which is a bonus for bonding but not when you’re exhausted. I’m now two and a half months in and it’s a doddle, I’m so glad I pushed through that hard time, I’ve reached my goal and I feel like I can keep going for as long as I feel happy.

Formula feeding was more complicated than I thought, you don’t realise how many different formulas there are to choose from! First there’s the different brands and everyone has their opinions of of course! Then there’s the different types of milk, some rave about hungry babies yet others warn you to stay away. I did find that formula always made them more constipated. The washing and sterilising of bottles was frustrating at times, but then being able to ask someone to watch the baby whilst you have a shower or go do some shopping is attainable because they aren’t surgically attached to your breast! The benefits I found of formula feeding were:

  1. There isn’t the frustration of baby latching
  2. Other people can feed baby
  3. You can eat and drink whatever you like without worrying about it affecting baby
  4. You know how much milk they’ve consumed

I say that formula feeding was more complicated than I thought but in some ways it’s really simple, you make the bottle, you feed the baby and that’s it, there’s not need to work on latching or worrying about how much milk baby is getting because you can see it for yourself.

Expressing milk, I take my hat off to any momma who express their milk and feed it their baby through bottles. Above I’ve discussed the pros and cons of breast and bottle feeding, well this is both! So you’re getting all your amazing ‘liquid gold’ milk (as it is referred to in NICU) out through a breast pump, washing and sterilising bottles then feeding baby. It takes double the time and double the effort. I expressed while Jack was in NICU for 6 weeks, then for 6 weeks at home, he ended up needing premature baby formula to put weight on, but during the time I expressed it was very rewarding but it was hard work. The benefits to expressing are:

  1. Baby is still getting your milk
  2. Other people can feed baby
  3. You know how much milk baby has had
  4. You can freeze the milk and stockpile to use at a later date

Even though expressing is hard work, it is definitely worth it, it has so many great benefits for both mum and baby. Having battled trying to get Jack to latch and being unable to, I found this worked so well for us and I was so happy he could still get my milk.

So there it is, my take on the different types of feeding I’ve experienced first hand. There is a lot of judgement out there about each of these types of feeding, but there is one statement I stand by…

“All a baby cares about is that their belly is full and that you love them”

Really, as long as your baby is fed and happy…that’s all that matters. People will judge you no matter what you do, so you have to do what is best for you and baby not anyone else.

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A break from blogging

So  I’ve had a bit of a break from blogging the last few months. I’ve really missed it and feel there are so many things I have missed recording about my little monkey’s.

To re-cap I have two little boys Jack (2.5 yrs) and Michael (1.5 yrs) and write about all the trials and tribulations of being their mummy. Since I stopped blogging things have changed quite a lot, I am now expect a baby GIRL!

I will talk about my pregnancy more in upcoming posts but I’m still in shock it is a girl!

I just wanted to write a quick post about why I haven’t been blogging for a while, there has been no major reason other than life just getting in the way.

So now I have my 2yr old, 1 yr old, 20 weeks Pregnancy and my wedding in 8 weeks! Safe to say I have plenty to write about…..

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Christmas Gift Guide Request

I’m creating a Christmas Gift Guide of tried and tested toys!

I will try some my self with the kids and also accept reviews from real mum’s & kiddies with pictures!

If you would like to get in contact for my boys aged 1 & 2 to try your product or to send your review in for consideration then please get in contact via Facebook or Twitter!!

Happy Holidays!christmas-presents

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Halloween with kids ideas!

I had so many ideas for Halloween with the boys but unfortunately they got struck down with a sickness bug, they are recovering now, but since they are too young to understand Halloween I saw no need to dress them up when it would benefit them more having a cosy day in their PJs. Plus it’s the one night a month they spend at Nanny’s house, so they’re having a quiet one!

But saying that I do love Halloween and think kids are adorable dressed up for it! I really wanted to do Jack dressed as Chucky and Mikey as the baby from The Adam’s Family. I then saw a friend of mine on Facebook, Harriet, who has a baby the same age as Mikey, dressed her and her son Luca up for a Halloween competition and won 1st and 2nd Place!

Like me, Harriet likes to create a lot of homemade sensory activities for her son, she gets creative and look at the results!

Luca1 Luca2 Luca3

Harriet was kind enough to let me use her pictures for this post!

So there you go a fun and creative way to dress up with your little on for Halloween.

If any readers have pictures of their cute little ones, comment with them or send them in via Facebook or Twitter!

Happy Halloween!

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The screaming, kicking & punching terrible 2’s are here!

Jack turns two on the 11th November, it’s hard to believe that my tiny premature baby that was born at 29+5 weeks Gestation is almost two!

... jack

Especially since he started not even being able to breathe by himself and now he has got a whole personality of his own, saying words, starting to string sentences together, feeding himself, knowing he does NOT want to use the potty and of course the reason they are called the terrible two’s….the tantrums.

He’s always been very loving and affectionate especially to his little brother, but I will give you a few scenarios in the last week that have shown the sudden change in his behaviour.

Tantrum 1 – Biting

We were playing “tractor” which started with me getting a picture of a tractor on google images for Jack to point at and say “tractor” to on my laptop, we have gradually progressed and now he says around 30-40 words, the other day we were playing a lovely game of tractor when Jack started smacking the laptop, so I looked at him and said “No Jack, that’s naughty”, he looked at me with anger, his body went rigid with rage, he ran over to his Daddy who was laid on the sofa and without any warning, bit him on the leg! There was pure anger, from nowhere! All of a sudden he was fine and accepted being told off, he gave Daddy a kiss and a cuddle with an apology. But it was so shocking! He has never bitten before!

Tantrum 2 – Raisins

Jack loves eating his dinner, him and Mikey sit side by side in their high chairs and never have any objections, except for Tuesday, on Tuesday this all changed. He screamed and went rigid, he wouldn’t calm down and just stormed about screaming, then all of a sudden walked over to the table and pointed at a box of Raisins, we handed him the box and he was fine, he then got in his high chair and ate all of his dinner. I didn’t see this as giving into him, as I’d happily give him a snack and considering he ate all of his tea, I saw his anger as frustration that he couldn’t communicate what he wanted.

Tantrum 3 – Bath time

Bath time is Jack’s favourite time of day hands-down, so when I get him out of it, there is a 5 second struggle until he remembers he then gets to watch a bit of Peppa Pig and have his night time bottle. Tonight I laid him on the towel and he kicked, punched and scratched, it only lasted for maybe 20 seconds then he was fine, he had his nightly inhaler and calmed down, I was in shock though, shock that my tiny snuggly baby that needed me to survive would try and hurt me! I know he doesn’t know the difference and is learning from his emotions, but still it’s hard to deal with!

They say that a toddler’s hormones are the same as a teenagers, well if Jack’s feeling the hormones I felt as a teenager I’m going to run and hide…this can only get worse!