Friday, 28 February 2014

Daddy improving

Today is Mr M's birthday - Happy Birthday Gorgeous!!

You may remember me writing a post a few weeks back about men and the effect that pregnancy and new baby can have on them and that they are often forgotten.

Mr M is improving from how he was feeling a month ago.  It was tough for a while but he is now seeing his GP regularly and has been put forward for support from services.

I have tried to offer as much support as I can.  I have had a number of hats on throughout - my concerned wife hat, my mental health nurse hat and a very occasional time my grumpy tired mummy hat.

Some people have found it difficult to understand how a dad is struggling with a new baby, a few times people have said "he was so excited about becoming a dad".  What do they think happens with mums who suffer from post-natal depression?! Were they also not looking forward to becoming a parent!? Of course they were!!

It's not just the new baby that has caused Mr M to feel unwell - he's had a tough year or so.  He was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, his grandad (who he adored) passed away quite quickly.  He has always been quite an anxious person but this has been amplified.

Through his hardest period every time Baby M cried he was worried that our neighbours would phone social services.  It was difficult to convince him that babies cry and also they have children they will understand.

We have been sitting down and talking a lot.  We work together the challenge his thinking and anxieties.  He is doing really well and I keep telling him that small steps are important, even though he might not feel hes making any progress he is.

I am so proud of how well he is doing and he is such an amazing dad to Baby M.  I hope he has a wonderful birthday just as he deserves!!

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Mummy starting to feel normal

I am starting to feel like me again!!!

There was a time a few weeks ago that I wondered would I ever not feel pain in my stomach again!  I was beginning to worry that there was something wrong and that I wasn't healing properly.  People keep telling me I have had major abdominal surgery - yes this is true but when you can't pick up you baby and walk around with him for long you just feel like a terrible mother you don't think about why!

I still have the odd twinge in my right hand side but I think that is because Baby M had his head pretty well buried into that side and they had to cut a bit into the side to get him out.  It's nowhere near as painful as it was.  My scar is healing well.

I have had my first period - I won't go into details but Oh My God! I hate being a woman sometimes!! I'm sure other mums will know exactly what I'm talking about.

I feel like we are getting into a rhythm as parents now too, no Baby M still isn't sleeping through the night before you ask. But we are used to getting up and who is getting up. 

I am now able to manage to walk good distances.  I am looking forward to doing exercise and after we get back from our time at my folks caravan the exercise routine will begin.  My dad has given me his bike rollers to borrow so I can cycle in the garage if the weather is bad and I can't wait to get back running.  I'm looking forward to strengthening my core and doing some yoga.  I can't wait to get rid of this belly!!!

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Water babies swimming - class 1

So we had our first swimming class with Water Babies

I was excited but a little apprehensive.

Our little man looked great in his wetsuit.

As we got into the water he was fine, yay!!

We started bouncing our babies around in the water, still looked like he was enjoying it!

We did our first swimming move, he really took to that well.

Next we did the Name, Ready, Go.  This is where you prepare baby for going underwater - you say their name, then ready, then go, then put water on their face.  Baby M DID NOT like this part.  He got very very very upset!!  It took a while to calm him down.  We got out of the water and he had some cuddles.  This calmed him down so we got back into the water. 

No crying - good sign!!

I kept him close for the next few parts of the class and he didn't seem to mind being in the water.  Towards the end of the class we did humpty dumpty where you sit baby on the edge of the pool then bring them into the water - I brought him in for a cuddle which he liked.  We then did some more of the swimming move and then ended the class on twinkle twinkle little star.

Apart from the water in the face part he didn't seem to mind the class.  I think I felt like the class hadn't been successful due to the length of time he was crying and that he had got so upset however afterwards talking to my mum she made me realise that 90% of the class had been successful. 

The instructor told us to practice Name, Ready, Go in the bath so that he gets used to having his face splashed. 

Will have to see how class 2 goes, I'm sure he will get used to it

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Cherubs Baby Photography - first session

We heard about Cherubs Baby Photography through an email.  The are associated with Bounty.

I asked for further information as the information was vague in the email.  I was sent the contact details of my local photographer, I still hadn't been told how much this would cost (I was suspicious!!).

After contacting my local photographer I was informed that the scheme was free.  You receive a photo of baby newborn, when able to sit then when able to stand all for free.  Obviously they take a lot of photos so if you want you can buy these.  Some photographers charge a booking fee but ours didn't.

We thought we'd go along for a session - it's free after all!!!

Our photographer was lovely.  We took along 3 outfits for Baby M. 

For the first outfit (cheeky tshirt & chinos) Baby M was on his back at an angle so he was looking to the right - we got lots of giggles.

For the next outfit (superbaby sleepsuit) he was again on his back but at an angle looking left.

Next we put him in his Mamas & Papas Welcome to the World sleepsuit.  A number of photos were taken of the three of us together - I can't wait to see what these look like.  Baby M was then put on his front over a cushion.  His ability to llift himself up as improved so much, he was lifting his head well clear of the cushion and for really long spells.  These photos will look brillliant!  Finally some photos were taken of him over my shoulder.

We are going back to the studio on Thursday to look at the photos and pick our free one for the folio.  We will probably buy one of us as a family at least, maybe more.  The studio are also putting the photos password protected on their website as our families live far away so they can buy copies if they like.

Roll on Thursday!!

Monday, 24 February 2014

Using our baby carrier

We bought a Babyway 3 in 1 carrier before Baby M was born.  There are so many carriers out there and we didn't want to spend alot of money incase he didn't like it.  The carrier can hold baby facing you, facing forward or on your back. 

Baby M has loved being close to us since he was born.  He will easily fall asleep on either of us and I think when he can roll over he will sleep on his front as he appears to find that a much more comfortable position.

My folks have a caravan in Northumberland - we are hoping to go there next week (weather dependent).  We do A LOT of walking when we are there.  We hope that when Baby M is a little older he will enjoy this as much as we do.  We both want him to enjoy the outdoors and exploring.

As much as we love pushing him in his pram it isn't realistic to take that on a forest walk or along the beach.

We have been "practicing" with the carrier for the past few days at home - firstly to check he likes it and secondly so we know what we are doing with it!!

My back and shoulders are shocking, plus I don't know whether I could trust myself carrying Baby M.  Mr M is really keen to carry him so I have encouraged that.  Baby M is VERY nosey!! He loves looking around and the carrier gives him that opportunity.

On the 3 times so far we have used it outside he has appeared to really enjoy it and has eventually fallen asleep.  We put an all in one suit on him so he is nice and cosy.  We have gone on walks and walked further each time.  Mr M has stated that he feels comfortable and his back is never sore afterwards.  My mum has been on a mission (like mums do) and she has bought a universal rain cover for the carrier too.

Hopefully we will get lots of use out of it at my folks caravan and once Baby M is ready we can turn the carrier round so he is forward facing and he can see much more of the world around him.

The MAD Blog Awards 2014 - Nominations

I have taken some time to decide whether to write this post.  On hearing about the MAD Blog Awards I have nominated my favourite blogs and got thinking about my own.  Should I ask my readers to nominate me in the Best New Blog Category?!

After much thinking I decided to ask my readers for a nomination.  As with many things in life - if you don't ask you don't get!!

I started this blog back in November when I was pregnant with Baby M, I hope that people have enjoyed reading my posts and have found them helpful, informative and interesting.

I am always looking into ways to improve my blog too, so if people have advice I am all ears!!

I don't think I fit into any category other than Best New Blog, I don't feel I have been blogging long enough to make an impact onto any other category.  There are so many fantabulous blogs out there I have some way to go yet.

I have nominated MeTheManandTheBaby, Instinctive Mum, FamilyFourFun, Ghostwritermummy and Mummy Tries.

If you would like to nominate my little blog I would really appreciate it.  It will help me realise that my hard work and ramblings are appreciated by others.  You can nominate me (or anyone else) here.

Thank you very much in advance!!

Friday, 21 February 2014

Changing Baby

Baby M is 11 weeks old next week!! How time has flown!!

Over the past few days friends and family have been telling us how much Baby M has changed recently.  I agree he is becoming a little person now and you can see his little personality starting to come through.  He is much more interactive with us and his environment

I'm glad he's moved on from the newborn phase - as cute as he was sleeping I am enjoying him much more now he is able to engage with things.  He still sleeps quite alot but I know that will change.

I love our little boy so much!! I am enjoying every day and trying not to let the tiredness get to me too much when he has a not so good day

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Swimming Lessons booked

I really want Baby M to learn to swim but I also want him to have fun in the water.  I don't want him to grow up scared of the water.

He loves his baths, the loves kicking his legs and splashing so I think he would love swimming.

We had a look to see what was available in our area.  Our local pool does swimming lessons for babies under 18 months.  I then found out that there are water babies classes in our area.  I have heard great things about water babies online and would like to take Baby M to their classes. 

Yes I know it would be cheaper to take Baby M to the local pool but I think he will enjoy water babies.  The nearest class to us is at a hotel. 

Water babies are focused on making the experience the best it can be for you and baby.  They help build baby's confidence in the pool and it also helps bonding with mummy and baby. 

I phoned my local office who had been really helpful with my inquiry via email and booked the class.  We were informed that they have a double nappy system.  This means that baby must wear a swimming nappy with a neoprene nappy over the top.  Water babies provide a neoprene nappy for £9.99 which I didn't think was too unreasonable since you will get use from this.  Due to our lessons being in a hotel the water temperature is good but the air temperature can be cool.  For this reason baby must wear a warming wetsuit.  Again one is provided by water babies for £23.  Our local office didn't have Baby M's size so I ordered one from their website.  I ordered it in the afternoon and it arrived the next morning - quick!!!

I can't wait for Baby M to start his swimming classes and I think he will love them.  I'm glad we have chosen Water Babies

Disclaimer:  This post contains my own views.  I have not discussed this post with Water Babies and neither have I been offered any incentive to write this post

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

January 2014 Nonabox - Review

I have tried beauty boxes before and thought they were a great idea.  When I saw Nonabox I wanted to give it a try, then for the January box they were offering 50% off.  What a great opportunity to try the box at a reduced rate of £12.50 instead of the normal £25

I loved that the box arrived wrapped in ribbon and in a sturdy box. 

I really liked the contents of my box.

Maison Bebe - Buggy Hooks (rrp 99p)
You get 2 hooks included which is great value.  They rotate 360 degrees which is supposed to leave you in total control.  I liked these hooks, although I already have a buggy buddy.  The hooks are handy but they are open so depending on what you put on it could fall off easily.  For 99p though they are great value!

The Nonabox Bag
This is a bag made from 100% recycled material.  Apparently it is so you can carry all your babies essentials around (nappy, wipes, etc).  It isn't that big and I would rather use my changing bag than this bag.  I have added it to my food shopping bag collection though, any bag is handy!

Cloud B Plush Sleep Aroma Pillow (Amazon £34.90)
I couldn't find this on the Cloud B website.  I did however find it on Amazon.  The pillow is the recommend size for a child and has a lavender pouch inside it.  This is supposed to lull your child to sleep.  When not being used as a pillow it can be followed into a plush animal.  Baby M is too young to use this pillow so I haven't tried him with it yet.  It does smell lovely and lavender though!   

Beaba 360 degree spoon (rrp £7)
Again Baby M is far too young to use this yet.  I will definitely use it when he is weaning though!  The spoon is able to rotate to alleviate frustration in children when they begin to feed themselves.  This means that the spoon always stays horizontal so food won't fall off.  It sounds like a great idea!

Bio Baby Nappies (2 nappies) (£7.05 for 40 nappies - Amazon)
We received 2 nappies in our box.  They were good nappies, we didn't have any leakage with the nappies we tried and they fit really well.  They didn't feel any different than normal nappies.  The bonus is they are biodegradable.  I found them on Amazon for £7.05 for 40 nappies.  I would use them again but I don't think I would make them my first choice of nappy for no reason other than I like the nappies I use.   

Mama Mio Tummy Rub Butter (rrp £23.50)
I got a small tube of this in my box.  My first thought was that I didn't need this as I had already given birth and luckily hadn't had stretch marks.  I was all for giving it to a newly pregnant friend.  However I then had a look on the Mio Skincare website.  They recommend that you use this rub whilst pregnant but also for 4 months post baby to help maintain skin tone whilst everything gets back to normal.  I have been using it for this purpose for a few days.  It smells lovely and feels great on your skin.  The aim of the rub is to maintain elasticity in the the skin.  I am going to see how I get on with this tube then I might buy a tub!

I really liked my first Nonabox for £12.50 it was a bargain - especially when the pillow alone is on Amazon for £34.90.  I did however cancel my subscription after this box as £25 is alot of money for me just now whilst I am on maternity leave.  I might look into it again when I am back to work and money isn't quite so tight.

Disclaimer: I bought this box when it was on offer, there was no communication between myself and Nonabox and a review was not promised.  Views are my own    

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Increase in awareness

Baby M is becoming more and more nosey.  He doesn't want to be held like a baby looking at your face.  He much prefers either being held over your shoulder or he even tries to put his weight on his legs and stand himself up.  He loves sitting in his chair and is mesmerised by the tv!!

He seems to have developed a love for the winter olympics - he seems to have enjoyed ice hockey and snowboarding the most.  When someone fell in the skiing he laughed, odd child!

He prefers being in his pushchair rather than the pram now as he can see more of what's going on.  We still lie him in the flat position though. 

He is becoming a little person, you can see his personality is starting to appear.  I am so excited about this developing!!

Monday, 17 February 2014

Nursery Coming along - Cot now built

The nursery is coming along nicely.  My mum brought the cot at the weekend and her and Mr M built it. 

We chose a BabyStyle Bordeaux Cotbed.  We went for a cotbed as we thought it might be more economical than buying a cot then a toddler bed. 

The instructions said it would take 1 person 30 minutes to build - Mr M & my mum took 34 minutes, with the first few minutes trying to decipher the slightly complicated instructions.

We have Lollipop Lane Tiddly Wink Safari bedding and bumper for the cot.  We decided to pick this as we had an animal theme in the nursery and it was nice and bright.  It gorgeous!! The only problem is the bumper isn't great for our style of cot, the end part has nowhere to tie to so I had to white tack it only the outside of the cot, not ideal.  We weren't sure if we were going to get a mobile for the cot or not but Baby M loves looking at lights.  We decided to get the Tomy Winnie the Pooh Sweet Dreams lightshow mobile.  It has a daytime and nighttime mode - the daytime mode plays the Winnie the Pooh tune and has a lightshow on the mobile.  The nighttime mode plays a lullaby and has the lightshow on the mobile and projects it on the ceiling. 

We have a Mamas & Papas Jamboree lampshade.  Again we loved the colours and the little elephant, this again went with our colour theme and the animal theme.  For curtains we bought Dunelm Mill Jungle Time blackout curtains.  They are great, they really are blackout and will be brilliant when Baby M has naps in the day and when summer arrives!! They are lovely and colourful and again go with the theme. 

All we have to do is put pictures on the walls.  We have some photos that Mr M's grandad took of planes already up but we want to put up some others, we just need to think what and where.

Friday, 14 February 2014

BACK TO SLEEP Slumber Bear - Review

My mum bought this for Baby M just after I had my 12 week scan.  The bear is gorgeous but to be honest at the time I didn't really think we would use the audio pacifier

The Slumber Bear is by Prince Lionheart.

Price varies but it generally retails for £24.99-£30

The bear comes with a comforting removable soother and a pouch at the back which contains the 5 function audio pacifier.  The 5 functions are - heart beat, waves, white noise, lullaby and a record button for you to record your own noise.  We tried to record the hoover on the record button as that seemed to work at soothing Baby M but for some reason it would only record a few seconds then revert back to heart beat function.

We use the heart beat function as it seems to soothe Baby M and help send him to sleep.  At the moment whilst he is in his moses basket we don't have the bear inside the basket incase it smothers him.  The pacifier comes out of the pouch at the back of the bear and has velcro straps on.  We put these straps around the handle of the moses basket.  When Baby M was smaller we had it inside the basket but now he's a bit bigger and hits his hands off the side of the basket we have it on the outside.  It is still loud enough for him to hear though. 

The pacifier has an auto shut off so after 5 minutes the noise stops.  As we have the moses basket at the bottom of the bed and the pacifier now hangs on the bottom of the bed I just touch it with my foot to set it off again.  Also if Baby M moves it sets off.

We love this product.  The bear is so soft!! I can't wait for Baby M to be able to appreciate the bear.  We will put it in his cot when he is big enough to go in it.  The audio pacifier has saved us many a sleepless night!!  We would have been up and down soothing Baby M without it.  I would highly recommend it

Disclaimer: This product was bought as a present by a family member with no association to Prince Lionheart.  The views are my own

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Meme: Desert Island Discs

The lovely Mummy Tries nominated me for this Desert Island Discs Meme.  Her fantastic post can be found here.  You need to compile a mixed tape of your favorite songs that you wouldn't mind listening to on repeat if you were stranded on a desert island.

Lionel Richie - Dancing on the ceiling
As many of my friends will tell you this is my tune.  It cheers me up if I feel down, its the first song I request when I'm out dancing and when it comes on the radio I crank the volume up.  How can anyone not want to have a boogie to this??!

James Morrison - You make it real
This was our first dance song at our wedding, I couldn't not have it on my tape.  It makes me smile when I think back to our special day but it also makes me thankful for everything we have.

5ive - Keep on Moving
This song reminds me of my time at uni and going out with my friends.  This was my "getting ready" song.  I have some wonderful memories from my uni days and have made some amazing friendships

Dolly Parton - 9 to 5
This song was my friend and I's song throughout our nurse training - especially when we were on placement.  Even now whenever we hear it we text each other, as we are nearly 300 miles away from each other we don't get to see each other as often as we would like

Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby
The Kaiser Chiefs were the first band Mr M & I went to see together, they put on an amazing performance at the Assembly Rooms in Edinburgh!! We had an amazing night!! If we had had a girl Ruby was one of our top 5 names because of that night and how much we love this song

Imagine Dragons - It's Time
I really like this song, it used to haunt me driving to work and constantly be on in the car no matter when I was driving.  I have no reason other than I really like it to add it to the list

Emily Sande - Read all about it
This song makes me want to cry, I get so emotional when I listen to it.  There would be times on a desert island where I would feel like a good sob so I'd stick this song on.  Plus the woman has unbelievable talent!!

Passenger - Let Her Go
Again I just love this song and at the moment it also reminds me of my mum as she has this song on repeat!!

So there you have it, these are my choices.

Now over to these lovely people to share their ultimate mixed tapes

Jen at Instinctive Mum
Rosey at PND & Me
Emma at Me, The Man & The Baby
Zena at Zena's Suitcase
Ginger at Gertie & Ginger

Is my 9 week old teething?!?

Now I know this might sound a little crazy but I'm not sure if Baby M is teething.  Can a 9 week old be teething? Isn't it a little early??

There are a few reasons I think he might be teething.

Firstly he has started drooling quite a lot over the past few days.  He has also started putting his fist in his mouth a lot more.  He also has a runny nose, I thought this was maybe the cold but after I noticed the other 2 things I did wonder if it might be teething.  Dr Google has informed me that it is possible for 2 month old babies to teeth. 

He doesn't have a temperature but he does seem grumpy at times.  I have been trying to encourage him to suck his thumb and we have tried a teething ring but it's a little big for his mouth.  I don't want to give hom calpol incase he isn't teething

Has anyone else experienced this?? What advice do you have?

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

8 week check & vaccinations - Baby

Baby M had to go to the Dr for his 8 weeks check.  The same checks were carried out before he left the hospital, these were checking that everything was still as should be.  

Firstly we saw the nurse and he was weighed and his height taken, he weighs 12lb 3 oz now and measured 52 cm in length.  He's our big boy!!

Next he saw the GP.  He checked him over including his hips, fall reflex and his man area.  Baby M has an umbilical hernia so he informed us that he wasn't concerned but for us to make a Dr appointment for 3 months time so this can be monitored.  If we have any concerns in the time before that then we obviously make an appointment.  

We then went back to the nurse and he was given his vaccinations.  He was given the 5 in 1 vaccination which contains diphtheria, polio, tetanus, whopping cough and hib.  He also received his pneumonia vaccination.  There were 2 nurses who stood one on either side and each administered an injection into a leg at the same time, he had little plasters on each leg after.  Now he did scream but it wasn't as bad as we were expecting.  He was given a hug by daddy (who was holding him as I would get upset if I had to hold him) then he was fine.  He even gave the nurses smiles after!!! He was then given the rotavirus in liquid form which he seemed to like the taste of!!

We have to keep an on his injection sites and if he develops a temperature we can strip him down to his vest or if it continues give him some calpol.  

I am so proud of how well he managed, he's our little soldier!!!

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

2 months

I can't believe Baby M is 2 months old already!!!

The time has flown by!!

He has changed so much in the past few weeks.  I love his smile and he is now giggling too, its infectious!!! As soon as he starts you can't help but laugh yourself.  It brightens up your day.

He also talks to you, obviously not words (that would be impressive!) but when you talk to him he makes noises back and has different noises that he makes.

He's growing too, some of his 0-3 month sleepsuits are getting a little snug and he has a romper suit that is now 3/4 length on his legs.  I think he will be tall like his mummy & daddy.

He is able to focus on things much more and is noticing his surroundings.  He seems fascinated with lights and due to our tv being huge he often watches the football or darts (things with lots of colours in them).  Much to Mr M's delight!

He's had his first cold which wasn't fun but he was such a soldier through it all.

He is now enjoying his toys, showing genuine interest in them.  

I am loving seeing him change into a little person with a personality

Monday, 10 February 2014

Family time

Family time means not only time for the 3 of us to be together but also time with our families.

Baby M is still young, our family time at the moment involves lots of walks, playing with toys and trying to stimulate him as much as we can.

As he grows we are planning to visit lots of different places, hopefully the weather will begin to improve and we can go to the park more.  It's not fun in the rain and wind.

Family time is also about spending time with our families.  As neither of our families live locally it's important to us to have them be in Baby M's life as much as possible and finding ways of getting around the distance issue.  My mum and dad only live 2 hours away so are planning to visit as often as their jobs will allow them.  We are also going to Ireland with my folks and brother later in the year which will be great family time!

My mum already has a great relationship with Baby M as she has been helping us out alot since he was born.  My mum and brother also FaceTime regularly (at least weekly) so that they can see Baby M and he can see them. My brother has been to visit already and has more visits planned for the year ahead.

Mr M's family live 4-5 hours away, his sister lives south and the rest of his family live north.  Whilst his sister has yet to visit the other family members have been, once after he was born and again at the weekend just passed.  The distance is an issue and I hope that it won't effect their relationship with Baby M.

I hope that Baby M grows up knowing that he is part of a wonderful family network and also how important our little family within that is.  I want him to grow up with a relationship with us like I have with my parents.  Now I am older they are not only my parents but my friends and I know they are always there for me

Friday, 7 February 2014

100 Happy Days - 19 days in

I decided to take part in 100 Happy Days after seeing someone on my Facebook timeline talking about it.

The idea is that we are all to busy to notice things that make us happy, this challenge asks that you take a photo each day of something that makes you happy.  Sounds easy!!

The website reports that if you complete the challenge you will feel happier, become more optimistic and receive compliments from others.  I haven't noticed any of that yet but I'm not even half way through yet

My biggest problem is my baby brain, my memory is shocking at the moment, I'm lucky I remember my own name some days!!  I often forget to take a photo until the evening. 

Many of my photos so far have been family orientated, I'm hoping to expand this once we get out and about and doing more things.  Not that there's anything wrong that my family make me happy!!

So 19 days in how am I doing? Not too badly, I have managed to take a photo every day (although I didn't realise that day 13 hadn't posted on twitter until the next day so I had to post 2 days on the same day).  Like i said I just feel I need to expand what I take photos of and also try and remember to take photos!!

Why don't you join up and see if you can complete the challenge & see whether it makes a difference to you!!

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Time To Change - Time to Talk

Today is Time to Talk Day being run by Time to Change.  Their aim - to end mental health discrimination

Mental Health is an issue I am passionate about, not only do I work in the field but I have friends and family who have and who are battling with mental health issues.

1 in 4 people will be effected by mental ill health but yet there is still a huge stigma around talking about it.  Thanks to the media many people's idea of someone who is suffering from a mental health issue is an axe wielding maniac - this is so far from the truth.  You would probably be surprised how many people you know have a mental health issue and you didn't even know.

I have worked in many different environments throughout my career from rehabilitation, secure units and community.  When people ask what my job is and I tell them I am shocked the amount of people that say "how can you work with people like that?".  People like what?!?!  Oh you mean PEOPLE.  I love the fact that every person I meet is different, one thing about mental health is that no one person experiences things the same way.  I also enjoy empowering people to walk their road of recovery.  Yes not everything is rosy but that's usually due to structures (or lack of them).

A service user once asked me how I know I am "normal" because I don't hear voices.  They have a valid point, in other countries voice hearers are revered.  My answer - whilst the point was valid society dictates in this country that what they experience isn't the norm.

In my professional and personal experiences people have found the benefit of talking invaluable, there are many times I have seen people stumble at a point in their recovery because loved ones don't understand what they are going through.  As a new mum health professionals check whether you are experiencing post natal depression, as I have said before dads often get forgotten but their life is also altered - if you know a new dad ask him how he's feeling.

Today is important, we need to talk about mental health much more and get rid of the stigma around it.  One way we can do that is by educating people.  There are some brilliant charities and websites out there with information - it's in layman's terms and also gives personal accounts.  There is also information about support available in your area.  ReThink, Mind and SANE are but a few.  

It is Time to Change.  It is Time to Talk

My biggest fear

Before I got pregnant my biggest fears were drowning and fire.  These were followed closely by wasps - you might think I am irrational (that's what a phobia is) but wasps have no purpose and they are evil!! They even look evil!!!

My biggest fear now is something happening to Baby M.

I don't mean I worry about this constantly 24 hours a day and wrap him in cotton wool.

This week has caused me to reflect about how lucky we are.  Friends have been experiencing some difficult times this week and also reading what other people experience on social media makes you think.  Whilst my labour wasn't smooth both Baby M & I came through it and were fit and healthy.  Baby M was tongue tied but that was resolved and although he has an umbilical hernia the Dr isn't too concerned.  He is a fit and healthy little boy. 

Some people aren't lucky enough to see their babies grow up, I don't know how they manage through that and hope I never have to find out either.

Your priorities do change when you become a parent and it's natural to worry about your children, that will never change.

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

A little rant

I apologise but I need to have a rant!

Being a new parent to a newborn baby is quite a stressful, but amazing, time!!!  You are constantly worrying that you aren't doing things right and feel you are making things up as you go.  Mixed in with that is loving every little moment with your baby.  What doesn't help and adds to that stress is other people, especially other mums.

Do people forget how they felt when they were a new parent?!?

If they took a step back would they have appreciated the things that they happily say or do to you?!?

I am seriously getting fed up of people asking if he sleeps through the night!! NO HE ISN'T!!! HE IS 8 WEEKS OLD!!!!  I would be worried if he was!!  What is with people's obsession with how much sleep you are getting?  Is it to make themselves feel better that they went through the sleepless nights and now some other person is going through it??  I really don't get it, why do they think you want to be reminded that your 6-8 hours sleep is a memory??  Feel free to ask me this question in 4 months time but not at the moment

Another thing that is starting to annoy me is the way people want to compare their child to yours.  Is he doing this, has he done that?  Little Susie was doing this by that moment, little Bobby did that.  That's really nice for you and I am happy for you but every child is different.  Baby M will do things before some children and after others, as long as he is reaching his milestones around the time he should be I'm not bothered.  When I say to people he's got his application for MENSA in the post I get looks which clearly say they don't appreciate my sarcastic comment - do they learn and not ask me again, NO they don't and they questions come up again!  He isn't even at nursery yet, I'm sure when he goes there it'll happen again with nursery mums.

And Breathe!!!!!

I feel much better for getting that off my chest, thank you for reading my rant :)

Will we ever been organised again?!?

This week Baby M turns 8 weeks old, how the time has flown!!

We still seem to be really disorganised in the morning, the time seems to fly and it's lunchtime before we know it.  Baby M wakes up about 630-7 but he then gets cosy on Mr M and falls asleep until 930.  We then give him his bottle, we have our showers (usually I jump in the shower whilst Mr M gives baby his bottle) and before we know it its lunchtime!!  I worry about what it's going to be like when Mr M goes back to work and its just me.  Maybe that will make us more organised as his going to work will make us be organised

When I have been looking at baby groups some of them are at 930 in the morning, how will we be ready for 930am?!?

Mr M have always been a bit faffy but we need to get ourselves into gear I think and get some kind of plan in the morning.  The rest of the day always goes well. 

When we plan to do something it feels like everything goes tits up and plans go down the toilet!

Has anyone else found being organised a struggle?

Do you have any tips??

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Dummy or thumb?

As a thumb sucker myself I have always been adamant that my child/children will not suck their thumb.  It was really hard to stop sucking my thumb and even now at 31 years old when I am really upset I find the thumb is back in my mouth.

I also hate children who have a dummy permanently stuck in their mouth!! Even more so when they try to talk to you with the dummy still in. 

So the dilemma - what to do with Baby M?!?

I am pretty sure that Baby M will be a thumb sucker, as much as I hate to admit it.  He hasn't quite worked out how to suck his thumb yet, he tries by sticking his fist in his mouth as much as he can.  I don't think he gets what he needs from that though as it doesn't usually stay in his mouth for long.  He keeps his thumb in his fist, I think once he releases his thumb from his grasp he will realise it can go in his mouth.

We have had to use a dummy on occasion, usually when he is really tired and crying due to his tiredness.  We have only been using it as a last resort. I know there are benefits of a dummy such as reduced risk of SIDS but it's only really during the day that he has used it, at night he goes to sleep without the need to be soothed by the dummy. 

The dummy we use is My First NUK, we got an AVENT dummy in our bottle set but it was too big for Baby M's mouth and squished his nose.  The NUK dummy appears to be better molded to his face.

I worry about the effect of either a dummy or thumb sucking on his teeth.  The NUK dummy is orthodontic so hopefully that means it be ok for his teeth.  I have an overbite because of my thumb sucking, my dentist would never give me a brace as a child as he said there was no point until I stopped sucking my thumb.  I don't want that for Baby M. 

Another thing to consider is that we have control over the dummy and when we can wean him off it, we don't have that luxury with a thumb.  My mum tried every product on the market to get me to stop sucking my thumb and none of them worked!

No matter what Baby M chooses as a soother there will be people who will judge me for being a bad mother, I just have to do whatever is best for Baby M.  As long as he is happy that's the main thing

Monday, 3 February 2014

Baby groups - where to start!?!

Where do you start when it comes to baby groups?!?

I'm in a strange situation, my GP practice is in another area than I live although it's the same town (odd I know!).  My health visitor is aware of baby groups in the area she covers but not in the area I live (helpful!).  She has put our name forward for baby massage which is run by her group of health visitors and we are looking forward to starting that in the next lot of classes.

I have spoken with friends in the area and they have recommended a baby group at the local library which they attended and enjoyed when their child was a baby - we will be trying that out.  There are other groups in the area too but my friend says she found them to be a clique.

I have used the ever useful Google and found there's a bounce and rhyme at another library which is quite local, Baby M seems to like it when we sing to him so we will give that a go too.

 I'm hoping that when I go to groups other mums will be able to tell me what is available in the area. 

I also don't want to take on too many groups, I don't want attending groups to become our full time job as baby and mummy.  When I go back to work our time together will be precious so I want to get the right balance of doing things which stimulate Baby M and meeting new mums but also having time where we do things together and also catching up with my friends, many who have children too.