time flies when you're being a mum

17 Sep, 2012

In my desperate attempts to get some freedom back, aside from singing George Michael’s Freedom to Reuben, I’ve been trying lots of new things. Basically Ruby likes the booby. It’s his preferred method for going to sleep so aside from making it impossible for me to do anything other than feed all day, it doesn’t always work. He’ll eat until he falls asleep but if he is overtired he’ll keep eating until he’s sick.

I can see how all bad habits start here, in these early weeks when you’re gagging for a bit more sleep or time to sterilise your nipple shields or a moment to reheat that cup of tea and spread something on that toast you made 2 hours ago…that’s the limit of my ambitions at the moment. So, you resort to letting your baby fall asleep on your boob, or when that doesn’t work rocking and jiggling or, my worst habit but fill-proof technique for sleep, lying in bed feeding, all the while knowing full well I’m going to regret it in a few months time when I’m no longer a zombie and Rueben is dependent on these tricks for sleep…including in the middle of the night!

So, on one of those days when Reuben was coming up to 4 weeks old and refusing to go to sleep despite being desperate for it and all the tricks had been tried, I did it. I tried him with a dummy. I received a dummy via a giveaway on the Nuby Facebook page and thought I may as well try it. It certainly soothed him then, he was being held by his Grandad, but I find he doesn’t like it much when I’m doing it (he knows I’ve got the real deal) and he needs help to keep it in his mouth otherwise he spits it out.

There’s 2 schools of thought when it comes to dummies…the health visitor one which is dummies help the baby regulate their breath and so prevent cot death, and the baby expert (such as Gina Ford) one who say if your baby gets dependent on a dummy for sleep they’re going to need it every time they wake so say goodbye to having a full night’s sleep.

At the moment Reuben is full of snot at night so I’m having to feed/see to him most hours, sometimes for hours at a time; therefore, the thought of only having to get up to pop a dummy in his mouth sounds heavenly! But, I know I’ll be cursing myself in months to come.

The other alternative is to teach him to self-settle. I’ve done this a few times with limited success. I decided to try after reading a sleep book from my pal and mama of 2, Ania, during an all-nighter with the Reubster. The book, Save Our Sleep: Helping your baby to sleep through the night, from birth to two years, is all about getting your baby into a routine so it is content and you get sleep. Aside for being more regimented than the army, it stipulates that once you have fed, winded and changed your baby, you put your baby down awake for each nap so they can self-settle. It gives a reassuring step-by-step guide to how to do this including the certain cry you can listen out for. This is their protest cry, meaning they are fighting sleep/annoyed that you put them down so you are safe to ignore this and they will soon go to sleep. If the cry is continuous and doesn’t change in pitch then you should see to your baby as they are probably still hungry or need winding some more.

So, I tried this a few times, all the while crying myself, and it did work but I felt like a terrible person, which was confirmed by some of my loved ones. So, I gave up and have reverted to being trapped under my lovely baby while he feeds himself to sleep…which I don’t mind too much as I get lots of cuddles and get to watch back-to-back romcoms on the movie channel. However, this is going to get old when the washing stacks up and my bum starts to resemble the sofa…what should I do to get a bit of my day back?!


01 Sep, 2012

It’s three weeks since my due date and that gorgeous last date with Mike. I literally can’t believe how upside down our world has been turned by this little fella and not just practical things, like making sure I eat or being able to go to the toilet in piece and quiet, but emotional things too. I spent at least the first week feeling completely overwhelmed by how gorgeous he was. I’d look at him and start crying just because I thought he was beautiful, or I’d be singing him a song and cry during the nice bits!

Other than being totally knackered and crying at the slightest thing, I’m generally amazed at how little time I have. When he’s asleep the first thing I do is sleep too. If I’m not bothered about sleeping (which is hardly ever), I’m cleaning the breast pump, bottles and nipple shields (I’ll fill you in on my breast feeding success/failure in my next post) or trying to eat something. In the space of 3 weeks I’ve gone from eating like a normal person to a race horse. It’s bizarre.

I thought I’d have time/energy to start working out again! Pah! I thought I’d be able to manage my diet- lots of healthy protein, juices, etc. Double pah!

What has happened though is the bump (i.e. I wouldn’t go so far as to say my baby weight!) has started to go.

Here it is after 4days …

…and here it is after 2 and a half weeks.

And, today, complete with muffin top and camel’s toe, I have squeezed myself back into my topshop Jamie jeans (they’re a size 10 but they’re long and super stretchy so I think they’re more like a size 12 – plus in my hay day they were too big!)

Finally, now he’s safely here I can answer the big question…did I get any stretch marks?! No. Hooray!

Now I need to work on getting some muscle tone back in my belly and losing the baby weight. I’ve just got on the scales and I’m 10 kg lighter than I was 3 weeks ago, which is a result. But… I’ve got about 12kg left to lose to be at my ideal weigh, which is 8kg less than I was before I got pregnant! Something tells me it’s going to take considerably longer than another 3 weeks, especially since my cartoon boobs seem to be growing before our eyes. I should probably stop drinking whole milk too…But it tastes soooo good!

Other posts on stretch marks you might be interested in…

How to prevent stretch marks

Prevent stretch marks shopping list

leave a comment.

(aka cry baby day)

08 Feb, 2012

Today was our Ultrasound – finally! I was really nervous and convinced the midwife would find nothing in there. Firstly, she said that thing they always say on telly, ‘this is going to be really cold’ before putting on the lube (or whatever it is they use). It wasn’t especially cold. Secondly, almost as soon as she put the thing on my stomach the little baby showed up. It was clear as day and instantly performed by starting to move around (not sing). I don’t want to sound cheesey but it was the most amazing thing I’ve ever done.

The pictures are never as good as when you’re there, but in the top picture you can see its head and face top left and an arm sticking out, and in the bottom one you can its face on the right looking down and its spine and stuff.

As for the crying, I have been emotional! It started in the ultrasound as soon as the baby popped up on the screen. I couldn’t believe it was there. On the way out the nurse said to me ‘you might want to wipe your eye, you’ve had a little leak while you were looking at the baby’. A leak? I guess you do have to have a full bladder before you go in but it didn’t come out my eyes, that was tears combined with too much black eye-liner.

Then on my way in to meet Alex for brunch (what? We’re ladies of leisure at the moment), I got all over whelmed again and blubbed my way in to town. Then again on my way home.

Finally, as a treat tonight we paid to watch One Day, that film based on a book with Anne Hathaway doing an interesting Yorkshire come South African come generic English accent. (They should have got that house keeper from Frasier in to train her.) Well, I don’t want to give it away but there’s a sad bit at the end. I’m normally a film crier but not this time, hard as nails. Then the film stopped, I had a cuddle with Mike and that’s when the blubbing really started. I started thinking about how I didn’t want that thing in the film to happen to Mike and then it escalated to imagining all bad things that could happen. I was really sad and started to panic that I was going to be a worrier from now on, thinking only dark thoughts!

Turns out I’m alright now…


10 Jan, 2012

January 2012

My name is Hannah Parker, I’m 28 and I live in Blyth, Northumberland (originally from the midlands, if you’d told me 10 years ago – or 3 come to think of it – that I’d be living in a small, fairly rundown seaside town in the North of England, I wouldn’t believe you) with my husband, Mike, and step daughter, Gabriella, who is 5.

I have recently found out I’m pregnant and I have (about a week ago) decided with my friend and business partner, Alex, to close down our business. It is for exciting reasons but nevertheless I am also unemployed.

In true New Year fashion, my mission for the next few months is to sort my life out so that…

a) I am healthy and happy in time for Bday (mid-August);

b) I have made some money/got a job so we are not completely skint; and

c) I have streamlined my life – meaning everything from successful and painfree business closure to uncluttered cupboards and a Gok-style wardrobe.

I am hoping to blog once a day about everything and anything relating to the above – the focus is likely to be on pregnancy and babies growing, sore boobs, clothes, weird things that I’ve found out and feel it is my duty to share (I already have gem for you – did you know that some pregnant women grow an extra pair of boobs?! I kid you not, more to come on that one!) and the ultimate issue – how not to put on a million pounds and become the size of house (without any impact on kidney bean – that’s how big my baby is at the moment).

I hope you find it useful and/or interesting and please do share your thoughts and ideas with me too!



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