Hurricane Ophelia

Ophelia, How the hell are ya?

Have you clamed down yet?  Ophelia, I heard you were pretty miffed!

On Sunday night, well it was like Christmas eve going to bed.  I wasn’t sure what to expect from the morning light.  There had been whispers you were on your way but Ophelia, I’m an Irish Mummy in the North and we’re tough in this part of the world.  It was gonna be business as usual as far as I was concerned.  Monday mornings are busy I haven’t got time for a load of fuss.  At some point after I’d gone to bed the Education Board pulled their fingers out and decided the wee forgotten six counties would get the day off school as well!  Now, that put halt to my Monday morning plans.  There’d be no quick nip to town for this Mama.

You see I was starting to believe you might actually turn up.  Exit Tough (sure its only a bit of wind) Mummy.  Enter Panic Mummy.  Ah Ophelia!  ‘Panic Mummy’ is not one you want to come and meet.  I’m irrational.  I was afraid I was gonna have to light my big Jo Malone Candle!  See I got it as a wedding present and I’m saving it for a special occasion.  Lighting the kids bath time if you mess with the electric is not special.

I rang the Husband.

He’d have to come home.  I didn’t want him bumping into you on the road.  Thanks be to goodness he had his sensible head on.  He was ahead of the game and on route.  Sure there was clearing up to be done.  We didn’t want you arriving and having to blow a load of stuff out of your way.  That picnic table had seen it’s last outdoor lunch for this year anyways!

I’d made a dash to the shop.  For necessities you know.  Bread, Milk, Butter, Sweets, Crisps, Buns…  Sure you know yourself!  When you’re expecting visitors you buy a big load of crap and then end up eating it all yourself.

Lunch time arrived and we were all ready and waiting for you.  We sat looking out the window.  I wasn’t sure what you’d look like so we were keeping an eye out.

We waited and waited and waited.

We watched more episodes of Power Rangers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles  than I’d care to admit.  There was quite a few arguments.  Keeping the four of us inside all day will do that.  We weren’t sure if that was you at the door or not.  I thought I heard you shout a few times but I thought you’d be louder.  You weren’t what I was expecting.  The lights didn’t go out and next doors trampoline stayed in their own garden.  I had heard you we’re a big impact kinda gal.  The drama queen in me is thinking was that the best you got, but then I heard you were a bit of a bitch down south and sure I don’t want to pi$$ you off or anything but a morning spent panic prepping for you, then an afternoon sat waiting on you, for you to just fly by us was a bit of a let down.

But sure we’ll not fall out about it.  We were all just suffering a bit of cabin fever.

The Education Board decided the kids should have another day off school today, well I’m sure there were Mothers up and down the county cursing you!  I couldn’t face another day on lock down in the house so we went for a peak to see what mess you’d left behind in your flit.  I’ll tell you something, you might not have done any damage to our house but you made a while mess of the road.  Jeez Missus what did them trees do to you?

Anyways I had better go now.  Nursery is open again in the morning and all the messages I was meant to do on Monday have been pushed till tomorrow so I’d better get organised.

Oh Ophelia just one last thing…  I hear your cousin Brian is meant to be calling round this weekend – could you tell him to come quietly as well?

All the best

Mrs C

 

Bringing up Georgia

Pregnant lady with bow for babyloss and miscarriage awareness

One in Four pregnancies end in miscarriage.

That’s quite a high statistic but miscarriage is something that we skirt around unsure if it should be talked about or not.

Should we share our pregnancy news before the twelve week scan?

I’m not writing this blog post to give a right or wrong answer, just my opinions and my feelings.  They have changed over the years.  Now in hindsight I think if you want to share your happy news with someone – Do it!!  Don’t hold back.  We all started out as someone’s little miracle.  When the boys are having a really cute moment (obviously not when they are smeared in Weetabix or have just tossed my neatly folded piles of laundry around the floor.)  I’m reminded how bloody fabulous they are!  We made them and I’m dam proud!

I’m not someone who ever called that little bean a foetus because to me it’s always a baby.  Forget the science I’m all about the romance!

From the second there appears two little lines, a big blue cross, or even that magic word ‘Pregnant‘ you have an image.  An image of bringing home your new bundle or maybe a flashback to sleepless nights.  In a split second you have planned a life as ‘Mummy’ to the little person growing inside you.

I don’t want to share the details of my story on the internet but I will say I was 1 in 4.  There are dates every year when I remember the Doctors words.  A song I can’t hear without welling up and there is a due date on which I count the years.

When it happened I didn’t know if I should share my sad news or not.  I wasn’t sure anyone would actually care how upset I was.  Would they brush it off as no big deal, “Sure she can have another baby”?

When all intervention and procedures were over I knew I had to tell some of my friends.  I didn’t want to shout it from the roof tops but if I said nothing it was like my baby never existed.  Like they didn’t matter when to me they were a very much longed for life.

I shouldn’t refer only to ‘Me’ it was very much a ‘We’ situation.  I may have physically lost our baby but Hubby was grieving too.  He’d lost the Baby he had imagined when I showed him the stick with two little lines.  But he was the man and played his role triumphantly.  He was strong and held it all together for me.  Making it all, all right.

I reasoned with myself – it wasn’t meant to be.  

If it hadn’t of happened I wouldn’t have the boys I do now.  It made me scared, the beginning of my second pregnancy with F was not an easy one.  Some people would refer to him as our Rainbow Baby and he is.  Even though we were delighted to have another baby to look forward to, superstation quietened us and we kept our news a secret till after our twelve week scan.

Then F came along.  I was lucky enough to be able to bring a home a healthy baby.  At last, we had got to the end of the rainbow and found our pot of gold!

When I finally got myself out and met a group of Mummies I realised my story isn’t uncommon.  There are lots of us who have been the 1 in 4.  Each of us with our own story of heartbreak.  All wondering if we did something wrong.  Unsure of the reason why and unsure if it’s something we should be sharing.

So when it came to my third pregnancy – I didn’t keep it a secret.  I didn’t make it common knowledge but the friends who I seen on a daily basis – I told.  They were the ones I would have wanted to pick me up if it all went wrong.  So it seemed only natural to let them in on my secret.  Oh, and they probably would have guessed something was occurring when I wasn’t shaking my wine glass at the waiter asking for another ‘large Pinot Grigio’ on our Christmas night out!

Loosing a baby at any stage is heart breaking.

The 9th-15th October is Baby loss awareness week.

A week to remember the little ones who we won’t see grow up. This year the Baby loss Awareness Campaign, want us to talk about better bereavement care for people affected by pregnancy and baby loss.

Bereavement care should be offered to anyone who has lost a baby before, during or after birth.  Unfortunately this care varies between regions and not all Trusts and Health Boards have a dedicated bereavement room in each maternity unit they cover.

I had lots of appointments after we received our heartbreak and looking back my, aftercare is a blur but I don’t think I could fault it.  I personally didn’t have a want to speak to a stranger about my loss but I understand that this option may be the only option someone else feels comfortable with.  That option should be there for everyone, regardless of your Post Code.  A room equipped for ladies or couples living their very own nightmare doesn’t seem like a massive ask but hospitals are obviously under huge stress and corners are being cut.

To any anyone reading this who has carried a baby.  Felt it move.  Maybe even decorated a nursery then heard the world crushing words “We can’t find a heartbeat” you are a hero!  I can’t even begin to imagine the grief, the sadness or the bravery you have experienced.  Hopefully you have been surrounded by love and kindness in your darkest days.  I hope you have had the care you needed and somehow you have found a way to carry on.  I don’t really have the words to express my empathy so I’m gonna shut up and pray that infant loss is something I never have to experience.

Every year, on October 15 (International Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day), people from around the world are invited to light a candle or candles, at 7 p.m. local time, creating a Wave of Light in memory of babies who have died too soon.

I’m gonna light a little candle this year and remember all the little babies that didn’t get to come home.  Can I ask my readers if you are someone or know someone who has suffered a miscarriage or babyloss share my post.  No-one should feel they have to grieve in secret.

All my love

Mrs C

xxx

 

Rhyming with Wine

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We did it…  It’s only taken eight months and one day but me and himself had DATE NIGHT!

Uninterrupted by a crying baby or an enthusiastic ‘I want to be involved in everything’ nearly three year old.  We left the house just me and him.  Husband and Wife.  Not Mummy and Daddy.  We walked to a restaurant, ate dinner, drank drinks and talked about…  Wait for it…  The kids.

Do you remember what life was like before the kids came along?

Remember staying in bed past eleven on a Sunday morning or heading out for brunch with your hair and make-up on point.  You’re outfit perfectly pieced together and a pair of heels that looked amazing but killed your ankles.  It’s not that long ago.  My eldest isn’t even three yet but life before him is starting to become a little hazy and when he bundles into our bed at 5.30am on a weekend morning I definitely remember those pre children weekends with rose tinted glasses.

Times have changed.  The perfect hair has been replaced by fuzzy, uncontrollable, greying regrowth.  The uncomfortable heels have been banished to the back of the cupboard in favour of run quick flats and the perfectly pieced together outfit… Ha! Well that’s now a ‘Mum Uniform’ but I think that deserves a post all of it’s own.

Our last Date Night…

Before Saturday night, the last time we had a meal together, in a restaurant just the two of us was my birthday in January.  The restaurant was just across the street from our London flat.  The kids were tucked up in bed when we left.  All hell broke loose when the baby woke up to a face that wasn’t mine.  After rocking and singing to a wailing, boob reliant six month old from virtually the moment we left my lovely friend gave up and knew I’d want to come home to comfort him.  So Date Night was cut short I ran across the road and settled the littlest munchkin with the sound of my key in the door and that was that… The end of Date Nights.  It was confirmed.  No one would do at bedtime only me.

Romantic evenings were to be confined to the C residence with the baby monitor to hand.

Date nights at home just aren’t the same.  There is always a screen of some description to compete with and there will always be washing to fold or dishes to be done.

But now the baby isn’t such a baby anymore we thought it was about time we tried again.

Fifteen years ago I met a guy in a bar, he drove me home, I gave him my number and that night our Love story began.  Nine years later he bought me a ring and two years after that we said ‘I do’.

We spent all them years thinking only of each other.  Then the little ‘C’s’ came along and he had to share me and I him.  Don’t get me wrong I wouldn’t be without the Rug Rats but gosh it was nice!  Nice to eat a meal without having to cut someone else’s up first.  Nice to enjoy the company of the guy I fell in love with all that time ago.  And the best bit… I didn’t have to clean up half chewed chips from under the table before we left.  Thankfully himself doesn’t leave food on the floor the way he does his socks!

We laughed, we discussed our future and reminisced about our past.

But our smiles were bigger and the glint in our eyes sparkly when we talked of our boys.  Is that really sad?  Nah… I’ll go with that’s Motherhood (or best include the Daddies in there too – ‘Parenthood’).  Cause no matter how many times a day I’ve thought about putting those cupboard messing, snot monsters for sale on Ebay I wouldn’t be ‘Me’ without them.

Anyways…  We were home at a reasonable hour the kids hadn’t even noticed we were gone and the babysitter… Well she is a little gem!  I knew they were in safe hands and we were only down the road if needed.

Maybe getting a night out with out the kids isn’t a big deal to everyone but to us it was long over due.

So for now Date Nights are firmly back on the Calendar!  Next time I won’t be so nervous about leaving someone else in charge.  I’ll be ready and waiting in an uncomfortable pair of shoes, I’ll try and tame the frizz and we can head out to talk about the kids!

 

You are a Brand Spanking New Mummy!  You’ve read all the books and you know what to expect.

 

  Welcome to Motherhood.

Here’s a few things you mightn’t be expecting…

The goo covered baby was placed on your chest and you didn’t get that gush of ‘Love’ everyone talks about.  Don’t stress it’ll come!  One day soon you are gonna feel like you could burst with how madly in love you are with this little person.  No-one can explain this feeling.  It’s a different love than you have for your husband or wife.  You would literally do anything for them.  Cue protective ‘Mama Bear’.  God help anyone who messes with your Cub.

Your Pre-Mummy pay cheques disappeared only to be found on a hanger in your wardrobe.  Newsflash!  All that spare cash you spent on that cute top or the pair of shoes you couldn’t leave the shop without will now go on your very own two foot nothing, nappy wearing, model in the making.  Just wait till the time comes to buy them their first shoes.  How can something so small cost so much?!

You will use baby wipes to clean.  They can tackle everything from baby puke to greasy hand prints on your freshly painted walls.  Always have a packet to hand you never know when the kitchen table will need a quick lick.

If you didn’t drink wine before having kids – you will now.  There is no better way to celebrate keeping them alive and making it to bedtime than chilling out with ‘chilled glass of white’ (or red your choice!) when they are all tucked up.

This ‘Mummy’ lark is hard work.

You’re never alone (See below post) and sometimes you are gonna need some ‘me time’.  When you get it…  Enjoy it!  It probably won’t happen that often and when it does you are gonna miss them.  More than likely you’re gonna sit wondering how the baby is.  You’ll check your phone lots, just in case you missed a call and you’ll rush home eager to hear what they’ve been up to.

Going to the toilet by yourself will become a luxury.  They’re like little ants and you are the sugar.  THEY WILL FIND YOU!  Even if you lock the door you won’t have peace.  They’re gonna knock, bang and shout until you let them in.  Be prepared for lots of questions and brace yourself they like to know what’s happening.

Once weaning starts be prepared to share all your meals.  Even if they have the exact same meal as you, they are gonna want yours.  Be warned you will hide chocolate up your sleeve just so you can eat it in secret without sharing.

You’ll be able to sing all the theme tunes to your kids favourite TV shows.  The name of Ed Sheeran’s new song…  Not a chance.  As if you’re actually gonna get to listen to it anyway!

I hope you’ve enjoyed my ‘New Mummy’ tips!

I’m sure you’re doing a might fine job.  This Mummy role takes a bit of getting used to.  Don’t stress the little stuff and ALWAYS go with your gut.  You’ve got this Mama.

 

 

 

 

3 Little Buttons

What’s in your changing bag?

Do you even have a specific ‘changing bag’ or are you a throw a nappy in your handbag kinda gal?

Changing-Bag-Full-Of-Essentials

Here’s what’s in mine most days…  Lets be honest – Sometimes I am that ‘just throw a nappy in’ and hope for the best kinda gal.

  • Nappies (Obviously)  but there’s no need to be carrying round a whole bail!  Be realistic how many times are you really gonna change their bums unless there’s a smelly one in there?
  • Wipes.  None of this cotton wool and water business.  How are you gonna fill a basin of water, hold on to the baby on the changing table and maybe have to stop a toddler making a get away?  ‘Water wipes’ will be your saviour!  Now my little bottoms aren’t quite so new I’ve moved on to ‘Pampers Sensitive’.  They are kinder on the purse and OMG do you know how good baby wipes are at cleaning marks off walls and other surfaces you wish there wasn’t a mark on?!
  • Nappy sacks.  These are priceless!  Especially if you have to take your son’s stinker home from your friends house because you just couldn’t inflict that on her kitchen bin.  They’re also great for keeping drool covered bibs from soaking everything else in your bag.  Just don’t forget to take them out when you get home. No one wants to deal with the remnants of a week old Ella’s pouch mixed with the slobber of a teething baby.

I hear you’re also meant to carry around a change of clothes…  I’m pretty sure I did this as a ‘brand new Mum’ and the new-born baby grow I’d lovingly folded in there on our first outing was still there when the boy was six months old.  I think I got lucky! ‘Poonamis’ where few and far between.  I expect if I’d been faced with regular ‘Poo Explosions’ I’d have carried round a wardrobe!

  • A Changing Mat.  This is pretty self explanatory.  Some of the surfaces in baby changing areas I don’t want to touch let alone lay my most treasured possession on.
  • Anti-bacterial wipes.  This kinda follows on from my last point.  Highchairs…  How many kids have wiped their drool and snot covered paws all over the surface before your little munchkin sits in there to eat his dinner?
  • A big Muslin is always handy.  Apart from the obvious moping up baby puke, It’ll double as a blanket in the    summer months.  If you’re not feeling up to ‘whooping a boob out’ in public its plenty big to cover you and Baba.  And you could nearly guarantee when you’re feeding one baby the toddler, or yourself will knock something over and there’ll never be enough tissues on the table.
  • Snacks, snacks and more snacks!  My changing bag has a few secret pockets of snacks for when the snack pocket runs out!  It’s simple – I used bread sticks and raisins as bribes.   Who doesn’t?!

Paracetamol and Bonjela are only deal breakers if we’re heading off over night.  Just in-case the tooth fairies evil twin comes to visit.  My youngest likes nothing better than tipping the contents of the changing bag all over the floor so don’t think I’d win Mum of the Year award if I let him play with this stuff…

The rest of the contents are mine.

  • My purse.  Who needs toys?  What could be more fun than hoking through Mummy’s cards?
  • A Lipstick.  Sometimes when the day has been really sh*t there’s only one thing to do… Paint your face and pretend everything is A-O-K!  And when someone says “Don’t you look good today!”  You might actually believe it.
  • The most important thing… MY PHONE!  It’s the link to the outside world.  It doesn’t bark orders at me or call me Mama.  Plus when the snacks lose they’re appeal what else am I gonna bribe the kids with?
  • Whoops forgot… there’s normally a water cup or two in there as well.

So Mummies here’s my advise.  Keep that changing bag as light as possible!  You’ve enough to carry without bringing the kitchen sink along for a coffee.  Be realistic.  If you haven’t got it with you and you really, really need it – there’s probably a shop two doors down where you can buy it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

You Baby Me Mummy

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