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.