Archive for December, 2009

Happy Holidays!

December 29, 2009

I am still too absent minded to blog properly so again here are some updates from Shep Towers…

1. Naturally Zadie got a least 3 times as many christmas presents than Shep or I. The only ones she was interested in were a fluffy sheep with a bell inside which she rammed straight into her mouth and cuddled and a little gadget which you hang on the cot that plays Bach and Mozart. Grandma also bought her a posh wooden baby gym which she has been bashing away at and grabbing happily.

2. Zadie is thriving and I think I have got over a hurdle with the breastfeeding although I still often find it less than ideal. Only another 3 months to go until weaning time.

3. We had all the best intentions about using washable nappies. I bought 40 terry nappies from Green Baby and all the other kit you need with a view to using them full time. I bought biodegradeable disposeables for the hospital (although they come from Israel so I’m not sure about their green credentials once you count the air miles!). Of course the terry nappies were too big for Zadie when she hatched so we didn’t start them for a while but when she grew a bit we did persevere. However, I know now that we will never go 100% reuseable. Zadie will tolerate a wet disposeable for hours but will not bear a wet terry for even a minute – Grandma says this is a good sign for potty training later on though. We have a sort of routine with them now where Z has a terry for at home during the day and a disaposeable eco nappy during the night and if we are out and about and if I’m being honest when I am having a difficult day with her and want to get her to sleep! I really tried!

4. Z is 3 months old next week and is just growing out of newborn sized clothes so I still have piles of posh baby clothes I was given when she was born. She is bang on her centile curve though.

5. Passing the 3 month mark means Z is allowed to try out a whole new set of kit I bought her including the front facing baby carrier, her bumbo seat and best of all the baby bouncer you hang of a door frame. We bought her a swimsuit today – it was exactly what I imagined – red and white polka dot with a frill around the waist – we can take her in the pool on friday – very exciting!

6. Meanwhile I was given BSM driving lesson vouchers by two of my friends for christmas and told to get on with it! Grandma has agreed a regular babysitting day on Wednesdays so I can book lessons. I am bit scared!

7. Lastly I am starting my power pramming (yes, really) class after new year and hope to run the half marathon yet – heres hoping!

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Who Knew

December 9, 2009

The last few days have been a period of almost enforced reflection. Myself, the wee baby and Grandma took a trip up the line over the weekend all the way to North Herts. It had indeed been a while. I think the last pilgrimage was for my Grandad’s funeral sometime in 2003. My Mum had been a regular visitor until George died on 2007. After we unpacked the baby she went out to the car again. She said ‘i’ll knock on the door to get back in’….to which i replied ‘who else would it be?’. Mum said ‘no, it won’t be him will it?’. I think it was a rhetorical question.

Since my mother is part of some discount club for adventurous pensioners we stayed at the Milton Keynes Hilton so we could march around Ikea (we have nothing of the sort down by ‘ere) to procure a coveted wooden baby gym. This was an unsuccessful venture and Grandma was quite furious that Ikea were displaying it but not yet stocking it. We had more of a shuffle around the big mall in MK and I was quite brave and fed the baby in the restaurant in John Lewis but the christmas crowds got a bit much after a while. I did buy Grandma a new knitting pattern book so the wee baby can be kitted out in all manner of cardigans and bobble hats before it gets old enough to be embarrassed by them. I wish Plymouth had a John Lewis. Very much.

Anyway the point of the trip was to go and visit the clan so that my cousin and I could look at each other’s babies for the first time which was fun and strange because even though Emma and I are parents now, my 3 cousins and I still seem like the kids in the family. After that it was back into the familiar territory of Letchworth Garden City to inspect my aunt’s new Great Dane (size of a pony but scared of me unless I approached it on my knees – absurd!) and my middle cousin’s enormous, credit crunch bargain house, complete with heritage protection and original arts and crafts features.

After all that excitement we retired to the Pizza Hut on Eastcheap, long familiar from eating there since 1989 during visits from Mum when I still boarded at school just up the road. I could never have imagined we’d return 20 years later with my baby daughter.

I don’t feel like dancing

December 1, 2009

Been meaning to write blog posts for ages but i never seem to finish one. Its not so much the demmands of a 7 week old baby, (she is still very easy and goes to bed at 8 and sleep through until at least 2am) more not knowing what to say. I feel like having her has sucked the personality out of me. People come around and I have nothing new to tell them except bits and pieces about the baby, and this only really appeals to friends who have children.
I have also been through a period of feeling very low about my body although this seemed to lift unexplicably a few days ago. A post baby body coupled with major surgery induced constant fatigue had led me to empathise with that analogy older people use when they say ‘I’m ready for the scrapheap’.
There have been small mercies. Yesterday a friend’s mother enquired how I was feeding Z, when I told her she was breastfed her response was ‘That is HARD WORK’. YES IT IS!!! This made me feel better because amongst all the praise I have had from midwives, health visitors, GP’s, family and the general public that was the first acknowledgement that although very worthy and effort, breastfeeding is not easy.

BF is so physically demanding I have a silent strop about it most days. I cannot ever miss a meal or not eat enough- Z will feed heavily and not get enough from me and get very distressed. I learnt this the hard way a few times but I did get a call back through NHS Direct from a very understanding nurse who explained all this to me so I was able to take a break and carry on. I think unaided we might have resorted to formula by now which would have killed me. BF is also extrmely inconvinient. I cannot leave the house until Z has fed enough and during the day she prefers to graze feed and fiddle about with feeding so I never really know. Luckily she doesn’t do this at night. Thank god! Once I have gone out I have to think about where I can feed her if I am not in the car which is most of the time. Despite my mother and others campaigning in the 70’s for breastfeeding facilties they are very thin on the ground and always busy. Mothercare dutifully provides a changing/feeding room but thats one venue in a city of 300,000. It also irks me that the (usually crap) baby changing tables are usually located within disabled toilets. I have resorted to feeding Z in toilets a few times but feel resolute that I won’t do this again (although she seems to like it because of the quiet). I have been braver lately and fed her in Sainsbury’s cafe, outside a pub and in Debenhams restaurant. So far no one has given me any grief but I am a bit worried as it was on the news recently that a lady was asked to leave a cafe in London. I have decided that if this ever happens (and I’m feeling very brave) that I will stand up and ask all the customers at once if they mind me feeding my daughter and see what happens!

But wait…I have more! I still have wardrobe issues. I have to plan not only what is breastfeeding friendly but also tummy friendly too. I am still sore from my c section and anything tight or chunky (belts/jean waistbands) gets really painful after an hour or so walking about. I bought control pants to wear imediately after the birth which are very unsexy but at least allow me to wear jeans as they protect my tummy a bit. Thank god its winter! On a lighter note I bought some hareem pants from primark yesterday which have a loose, wide waistband (much comfier), shame they are so thin and flimsy. All this amounts to not feeling very carefree before the baby even comes into it.

I do, however, fit into my disco leggings and I did manage a brief night out on saturday. However I don’t think I was quite ready for it and felt far too fat, poorly attired and self concious to enjoy it that much. My friend got the dj in the club we went in to play Scissors Sister for me and I just burst into tears. We went to a gay club. It was a good call by my friends. I was ready for upbeat, fun and lets not take ourselves too seriously. I am not ready for posing in trendy bars.

Meanwhile I am starting a post natal excercise class after chirstmas which involves using the baby as a weight and power walking with the pram which sounds hilarious to me. If I can manage that I am starting at the gym fomerly known as Cannons which has a creche and a pool etc and will hopefully enable me to run the Plymouth Half Marathon in May. Yes I know I might not manage that but I’d rather be motivated to try than presume failiure.

Aside from all this the little baby is for the most party very jolly. I bought her those pram books with the black and white faces. She concentrates very hard and smiles at each page. I am relieved to put her to bed at night but miss her when she is asleep.

Over and out.