20 Weeks Old

Continuing on from the busyness of last fortnight we had your grandparents come to stay last week, to say you were spoilt rotten is an understatement. Among your swag of goodies, your Granny had knitted you a wonderful blanket, jumper and two of the cutest animal hats whilst your Grandad amused you with Dee Dee and plied us with copious amounts of chocolate and sweets! You relished being doted on despite being a bit off colour, it soon became apparent you had developed your first cold.

This week saw the arrival of Auntie Ann and Uncle Brian delivering to us your cot. This cot has a long history within our family. It initially belonged to your maternal great grandparents (my Nanny and Poppa) who bought it for your grandma (my mummy) when she was a baby. She then used it for Uncle Simon, Uncle Daniel and myself before it went to Auntie Ann to be used for my cousins Lisa and Helen. It then returned to the Petitt’s when it was used by Uncle Daniel and Auntie Sam for your cousins Ella and Tommy. Then back it went to be used by the Jaworski’s (my cousin Lisa and her husband Kuba) to be used for their two children Alex and Maja before it went to cousin Helen and her partner Leo to be used for Macey. Now it’s my turn to use it for you. It’s not in bad nick considering it’s 76 years old. Auntie Ann doted on you and I’ve never seen you so relaxed in the arms of a ‘stranger’ before, it’s a shame she couldn’t stay longer but it was lovely that she finally got to meet you and it was quite obvious you loved her.

Firsts
First trip to the pub for an evening meal at the Brendan Arms with Granny and Grandad, you behaved exceptionally but started getting tired so I rushed you home so as to get you to bed but you did wait til I’d finished my meal.

First cold, bless your heart, I thought you’d avoid it but unfortunately not. Apart from being very stuffed up you were happy enough, I just had to sit up with you all night so you could sleep upright thus enabling you to breathe.

First rolls. On the 6th April at 1450 you did your first, totally unaided roll from your tummy to your back, even with a cold you amaze me! Of course this was shortly after you pooped on your playmat and prior to peeing on it 😉 On the 9th you flipped from back to front on a totally flat surface.

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Taken immediately after your first f-b roll

Character
Your humour continues to shine through finding your father’s face the most amusing thing ever. I don’t blame you 😉 You’ve been really chilled out despite your cold and not being able to breathe properly, an absolute delight.

Muscle Development & Coordination
You’re doing proper little push ups now when on your tummy and are throwing yourself around from side to side and have finally rolled front to back and back to front. Though you’re not doing this every time it put you on your mat. This week I’ve noticed you paying particular interest in your bouncer play arch… Finally. You grab the little lion, in particular, with both hands and study it deeply, slowly turning it as you go, it really is a delight to watch you, I often find myself wondering what you’re thinking. Your newest trick is pinching and then twisting which is fun for us, especially when you grab my neck or under my arm and I’m pleased to announce you have, in the last two days, found your thumb and I’ve caught you sucking it on a few occasions, hopefully you’ll be self soothing before we know it.

Speech
You’ve been quite quiet this fortnight, this could be down to the fact you haven’t felt very well but you’ve still shared plenty of smiles and giggles with us. In the last couple of days though you’ve been back to your normal gobby self which is amazing!

Entertainment
You’ve absolutely fallen in love with your Lamaze Dragon (Dee Dee) this last couple of weeks and nothing delights you more than seeing her swoop down from a height rewarding her with a big chomp on her nose or ear. You love being read to and enjoy your cardboard books, mostly to munch on granted! I bought you a bumbo this week which you LOVE. Honestly, it’s the best thing I’ve bought, you look like such a grown up little boy in it and I’m sure you must feel more independent.

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Sleep
Hmm, this is hit and miss. I’ve had a four hour stretch followed by one hourly feeds from you yet one day last week you slept for 7 hours then a half hour feed followed by another 4 hours (of course I was checking on you every 3 hours). There’s no rhyme nor reason to it, we just have to take each night as it comes.

Routine
Your bedtime routine is still working, although the one night we ordered take away with granny and grandad to arrive at 8 when you’re ALWAYS asleep you decided to not settle til gone 9! I’m going to start a more rigid nap time for you during the day soon too, hoping to put you in your crib awake so you fall asleep that way. I’m yet to start this though *eek*

Growth
You are now 14Ib 9.5oz.
I have been trying your 3-6 month clothing on the last couple of days but they swamp you still, though I have now put you in your bigger baby gros at night which is rather funny. I’ve retired some of your 0-3 stuff but some brands still fit you nicely.

Feeding
It’s becoming quite obvious we’re nearing weaning time with you. You are fascinated with what I’m eating and drinking often grabbing for the cup or plate I’m holding and smacking your lips. In a comical moment in the pub when Granny and Grandad were down, you grabbed hold of Daddy’s pint glass and pulled that to your mouth. It made for a wonderful photograph. God forbid I eat something now when you’re feeding as you pull off me and glare at what I’m doing with a total look of “Excccccccccuse me, what do you think you’re doing?”

I’m not sure where the last 20 weeks has gone, in one sense it feels like only yesterday we welcomed you into the world, yet on the other I can’t even start to imagine my life prior to your arrival. You continue to delight us everyday and with every smile, giggle, frown or even whinge I fall deeper and deeper in love with you. I never imagined my heart could hold so much and wonder how it has room for anymore but it seems to grow with you. I’m so totally in awe of you and so proud.

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Mother’s Day

My mum, my beautiful, intelligent, funny, witty, kind, caring, popular, strong, heroic mum… where do I start? She is quite possibly the love of my life, second only, since November, to my boy.

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She sacrificed so much for us, she worked tirelessly to bring the three of us up to respect and care for others. She raised us single handed when my Dad had to go to Nigeria to work, she scrimped and saved to give us what we needed and often what we wanted. She was known not to eat herself so we had food on the table at a particularly bad time financially, working two jobs then coming home to do freelance typing just to pay the bills. She threw us the most amazing birthday parties, kids loved coming to our parties, in fact kids loved simply coming to our house for her cakes and warm welcome, never did she make them feel uncomfortable or in the way when I’m sure at times they were. I have the most wonderful memories of my childhood with her. She was strict but fair, we were never spoilt where objects were concerned and if we were naughty she never failed to punish us, the worst punishment of all was knowing she was disappointed or ashamed by our behaviour. However she loved us openly and never ever made us feel that we weren’t the centre of her world as she was ours.

As I grew into an adult our relationship changed from mother/daughter to best friends, we did pretty much everything together. We holidayed together, shopped together, worked together, often lived together, partied together, cried together and laughed together. Not a day went by when we didn’t talk except when I went travelling where phone calls were limited to, at the very least, once a week. She never turned us away, never made us feel that we couldn’t turn to her if we needed her and we so often did. She sacrificed so much for us and never asked for anything in return except that we be happy.

She’s the strongest woman I know, she’s a fighter, she tackled everything head on and with gusto. She wouldn’t let anything defeat her without a damn good fight.

In 2000 she was given the devastating news that she had cancer of the breast. Again she put on her bravest face and started the biggest battle of her life, never letting her humour or smile evade her, not in front of us anyway. She beat it after months of surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. I have never been so totally in awe of someone in my life, her bravery and positivity were inspiring to more than just us. She wasn’t just our hero, she touched the lives of so many people and rarely lost touch with anyone she came into contact with and as such had hundreds of friends across the world. This was never more evident than at every birthday and Christmas where the sheer number of cards that she received spoke volumes.

Unfortunately the cancer returned years later, it had metastasised and again her battle began to prolong her life. She fought it so well until unfortunately her body couldn’t fight any longer. Our relationship changed again and as her health began to fail I became her carer. It was my turn to look after the woman that had looked after me for 35 years and yet still her foremost concern was us and how we were. She never ceased to amaze us and despite medical opinion she saw in her 70th birthday, filling her room at the hospice with well wishers to bursting, so much so I was literally pushed out the patio doors. Even here she made friends, the staff loved her, she filled the place with light and laughter even when she was obviously in so much pain. That year, 2008, I celebrated my last Mother’s Day with the woman that defined me. Unfortunately 9 days after her birthday, on April 13th, we lost our brave, beautiful, wonderful, precious mother. Our hearts broke and continue to break to this day. Not a day goes by where I don’t think of her and miss her. A hole was left which nothing can ever fill.

The last five years I have tried to hide from Mother’s Day. I avoid card shops and florists, I turn my head away from gift shop windows in the run up and tend to lock myself away on that Sunday so as not to see the happy faces of mothers and daughters out on walks or out for lunch. I’m jealous you see and bloody angry that this evil disease has robbed the world, us, of such a precious person when there are so many wicked people still roaming it. I hate Mother’s Day.

Now here I am in 2014 no longer avoiding it but being the centre of it because now it’s taken on a whole new meaning… It’s now my badge of honour. I am now that mother to be celebrated. I’m not sure how I’m going to cope with this change having harboured such ill feelings for the last 5 years. I hopefully got all my tears out of the way last night in the hope that there won’t be any sad ones shed today.

I find myself missing my mum even more since the birth of my beautiful Noah. She would have doted on him and I feel he’s been robbed of this beautiful woman, of a doting grandmother so although this is now ‘my’ day I still find myself struggling to see it that way, I feel like a fraud, in my mind it will always belong to the woman that brought me into the world, she was a real mother.

My mum was my first love. She was my life. She was my everything. Now it’s my turn to hopefully give Noah the same wonderful memories and to instill the same moral and social principles. She’s a tough act to follow but I hope I do her proud.

Happy Mother’s Day Mum, I love you.

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Weight Watchers

It would appear weight is an issue that becomes public fodder right from the start of anyone’s pregnancy.

Be it the sonographers and midwives guesstimating your baby’s weight in utero giving you cause to dread your impending birth and crossing your legs. Then it turning out to be so far off the mark it’s a joke.

Colleagues, family, friends or just random passers bys remark on your bump size and again remarking on how massive you are at 38 weeks pregnant which, quite frankly, got my back up. One; I wasn’t MASSIVE, yes at the end I looked full term and there’s no denying it but massive is just an offensive remark to make to a woman who’s hormones are already making her an emotional wreck.

Then there’s the people who remind you of the pressures you’ll be under to ‘lose the baby weight’ before you’ve even met your child. You start researching the best way to do this and, let’s face it the only examples you have access to are celebrity examples which are simply unachievable especially whilst breast feeding given that you don’t have an entourage to help look after the baby and personal trainers to drive you back into shape in an unrealistic time frame.

Now I was lucky enough to actually lose weight whilst pregnant… Weight I have subsequently put on due to an over zealous appetite and penchant for chocolate (those who know me know I HATE chocolate, go figure, the only cravings I receive are after birth). One simply can’t diet when breast feeding, it is impossible, you’d pass out if you did and vigorous exercise is just a no go for reasons of breast control and time. The most I can manage is a vigorous walk when taking N for a stroll (and let’s face it the weather has been far from ideal for many of these lately) and a tiny bit of muscle fixing. A supposed ‘friend’ said to me 4 weeks after birth (her child being slightly older) “I could tell it was you by your fat arse” WTF? A hurtful thing to say to someone at the best of times, but to a sleep deprived new mum who feels like a total failure anyway it’s down right cruel and from a new mum themselves. What gives people the right to make such remarks? And by other women who’ve been through the same process. I’ve never once heard a man refer to mine or N’s weight when meeting our little man cub.

I’m desperate to exercise properly but am realistic that this may take until he sleeps through better for me to do as I simply don’t have the time nor the energy and although I fret that I’m a bit ‘baggier’ around the middle i know that this won’t be forever and I have more important things to worry about like raising and loving my child yet still it’s one of the first things anyone enquiries about. Yes I’m back in my pre maternity clothes but I can tell you now they don’t fit the same and I’d rather brag about the fact that my beautiful son is smiling, cooing and thriving than I’ve squeezed myself back into my jeans.

Just when you think you’ve covered all weight related issues people start attacking the last, and worst thing they can… your baby! Now I have a very sicky baby so have been obsessing over whether he is getting enough sustainence so have been reassuring myself by getting him weighed quite often and am proud to say that he is indeed gaining weight. However when remarking on his weight it is questioned by complete strangers with remarks such as: oh isn’t he small; are you sure he’s getting enough milk?; Only the 9th centile? Mine’s on the 90th. Holy cow… When does it stop? What is it with people’s fascination with weight. Look at him, he’s bright eyed, happy and thriving. If he was on the 98th people would people brag there child was on the 2nd and probably refer to him as chunky? It’s never ending.

It’s no wonder we grow up with weight issues when criticisms start when one is 5 weeks old, or even at birth. I’ve found myself asking other mothers about their child’s weight because people keep saying N is so small just so I can compare. When did we become so obsessed with growth charts and centiles and become so bloody competitive?

Weeks ago a midwife on Twitter said to me “watch the child, not the scales” and I didn’t understand what she meant, now I do and she’s absolutely right and I thoroughly intend to and when I tweet about his weight it will be with pride that it’s proof my baby boy is healthy and thriving.

Does He Love Me?

My beautiful boy is 7 weeks old now, the fastest, yet slowest 7 weeks of my life.

I’m sure time only moves in this way when you have a baby. The broken nights’ sleep and seemingly endless, lightless nights and the inconsolable cries during the day make time move at a snail’s pace. Yet the constant inability to get things done, basic things like getting yourself dressed before midday, preparing to go out for a simple walk and when you realise your tiny baby is growing out of his newborn clothes makes time seem like it’s racing by at warp speed and you have that overwhelming need to stop it and get off.

Here we are, in our 8th week as parents, Noah’s 8th week of life and I truly couldn’t be happier, despite the constant state of exhaustion I know it won’t last forever yet it still manages to affect the way you think.

Gone are the dreamy days of a milk drunk baby sleeping away the day only waking to be fed then collapsing into that stupor once more. We have welcomed a new phase. A phase of beautiful alertness, an alertness that sees him locking his eyes on our faces and gracing us with the most beautiful smile we’ve ever seen when he deems fit. Soaking in his surroundings and finding joy in certain things around him. He’s truly captivating, yet the last couple of weeks haven’t been easy to say the least.

N has been particularly fractious. With this new found alertness comes boredom. He rarely naps in the day now and after feeding and a little playtime the wails and screams begin. He’s been fed, changed, entertained, fed some more, nappy checked again. He’s apparently inconsolable for what seems like a large proportion of the day. Nothing seems to pacify him.

We’ve bought bouncers on the advice of other parents; “one that vibrates is a must”, they say; “They absolutely love it”, they say; “he’ll drop off in it in no time”, they say. He HATES it. He lasts five minutes at most til he’s crying once more. We’ve bought an activity mat, another recommendation, another total failure. We’ve tried dummies despite our hatred of the, he spits them out. We’ve tried colic drops despite not being totally convinced it is colic. He just wants to be held, then that becomes boring to him and so starts the squirming and wriggling and flailing head with the onset of more screams. I sing lullabies, read stories, read my twitter and Facebook timelines to him (ok, so that would make anyone cry). Carry out activities that I’ve googled are good for babies of this age. I’ve taken him for long walks that only result in me having to endure the looks on passers bys faces when they hear the screams, screams akin to that a victim in a slasher movie makes. Nothing, nothing seems to work. Now during the day I can cope, to an extent, with this tired as I am and usually I can take him to bed with me and nurse him to sleep and by 3 he’s managed to nod off.

Then the OH comes home and the whole thing starts once more only it’s doubly as fractious as we argue between ourselves over what could be wrong. We misunderstand what each other says in the heat of the situation, taking each remark as a criticism which then makes the whole situation 50 times more stressful. Then I give in and take him to bed at 8.30. I don’t care that I’m making a rod for my own back, it’s the only way of preserving my sanity. My relationship with D has changed beyond anything I could ever have imagined.

People say the first 6 weeks are the hardest after that they find their own routine, well those I would say, in our experience have been the easiest and those weeks have been and gone and no sooner do we seem a glimmer of a routine it all changes again, and now people say 12 weeks then some helpfully say 16-20 weeks. I think forcing a ‘routine’ will help, HA!! I’ve even resorted to buying Gina Ford’s book which I’m currently in the process of reading and have to admit some of her points are quite valid and wish I’d done some of the things she said from birth, but I didn’t. Anyway, the only routine we now follow is N’s apart from his bedtime routine I have decided to carry on being baby led. And as far as his bedtime routine goes it consists of a bath, feeding and hopefully settling. I am very lucky in the fact his nighttime routine is set and has been for a while now. He still wakes three times but feeds, winds and settles within half an hour and reading others’ stories I’m glad he has his unsettled time in the evening but it’s hard to see that when he’s been screaming for hours on end.

It’s frustrating that I can’t calm the one person I should be able to soothe. He’s part of me, how can I not soothe him? The only conclusion I come to in this tired, anxious, overwrought state is he hates me. The love I feel for him isn’t returned. Every time he sees my face he thinks he’s looking into the eyes of a monster, it’s the only answer. The only reason he’s behaving like this.

Then comes my saving grace… In a particularly bad episode before I broke down into floods of tears knowing the OH is out on the road for the night, knowing I’m on my own until he returns the next evening, knowing I have to keep it together, I put him in his car seat and put him in the car. As soon as he was locked in, silence. And so I drove and drove and drove. A 50 mile round trip to North Devon and he was finally asleep… My partner and I have, over this weekend, found this time driving around great for all three of us, N gets to sleep, or atleast have a period of no screaming whilst D and I get to talk like adults. I have found our Holy Grail!

I am currently awaiting the arrival of a Boba Wrap so at least I can walk around the house when N just wants be held. Another purchase, another promise of hope, I’ll keep you updated as to it’s success.

No one tells you how hard it is looking after a baby. You expect the sleepless nights, you expect to be sleep deprived for a few months, you expect the loss of a social life and a change in your relationship and you welcome these. What you can’t comprehend or prepare for is how much it hurts when you can’t seem to calm your beautiful baby, it tears at your heart, at your very soul and when you see your beautiful child’s first tears rolling down his cheeks you want to sob and sob and berate yourself for being so totally and utterly useless. You feel like such a failure and this feeling you don’t expect.

Yet with these seemingly horrific moments have come the most precious ones. Ones like when you can pick him up when he’s grizzly and with that one action you can calm him and when you watch him rouse from sleep and in that moment he opens his eyes, sees your face and rewards your efforts with the most endearing smile that lights up his face it wipes the slate clean once more.

So in hindsight… does he love me? Yes, I think that maybe he might!

6 Weeks Old

Time is going too fast.

My pregnancy dragged, like REALLY dragged. Every week seemed to last a month and it literally felt like FOREVER for Noah to finally be handed over to us safe and sound way back in November. Now he’s here time has suddenly sped up. It’s now a whole new year, we’ve seen two new months in, it’s like labour presses the fast forward button and there’s no way of turning it off and I want to cherish every second like it was an hour.

He continues to amaze us everyday. He’s such an inquisitive soul, always intrigued by his surroundings with great big doe eyes. The downside of this however is he rarely sleeps during the day which then leaves him a little grumpy and stressed in the evenings and we have to concede and take him to bed to settle, this isn’t such a bad idea as I get to shut my eyes too ;).

He’s holding his head up so strongly now and looks around surveying his surroundings, although he still let’s it flop quite suddenly when we’re least expecting it resulting in a few injuries to our faces.

He’s discovered his hands properly now and takes great delight in grabbing at everything, mainly my hair, necklace, glasses, lip and nose and has given his father a nice bindi on a couple of occasions. He also loves to eat them though he still fails to have found his thumb. He loves to mimic our hand and face movements which helps to entertain him on the changing mat and in the bath.

He continues to make the most incredible noises when asleep. The pops, whistles and squeaks constantly have us in fits of laughter when they wake us in the middle of the night in utter confusion or interrupt a conversation we’re having whilst he’s dosing in his basket.

We recently bought a Mamas and Papas Capella bouncer to try and entertain him as he is getting a little bored with our stupid faces and silly noises. He hated it. After much perseverance we’re slowly cracking it and he seems to be enjoying it more now, though I think the reason he doesn’t like it is because he’s strapped in. He likes to be free to wriggle.

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Of course we have the bouncer to thank for his first smile, that moment where your heart melts once more and I managed to catch the moment on video, I couldn’t believe my luck. Of course he doesn’t give them away freely and is yet to smile at every given moment but we’re getting there and it just means we treasure them even more when he does feel the need to treat his old mum and dad.

Today saw the arrival of his Mamas and Papas Tummy Time Octopus which I am waiting to use (he’s currently sound asleep) but looks incredible. I decided to purchase this (with the help of a voucher from his Uncle) as he is getting to the stage where I am in no doubt that he’ll soon be rolling over, he’s making all the right motions and he’s so bloomin’ determined and he tries his hardest twisting away from us on his changing table (unless he’s particularly messy he doesn’t relish his nappy changes).

We had baby clinic yesterday and in preparation for our 6 week GP check up on Monday Noah had a full set of measurements taken:

Weight: 9Ibs 3.5oz (despite him being a particularly sicky baby that’s a massive 1Ib 11.5oz increase that I mainly feel in my arms)
Length: 53.5cm (3cm growth)
Head Circumference: 39cm (5cm growth – that’ll be his Dad’s fault then)

I am in no doubt that’ll he soon outgrow his newborn clothing, I give him a couple more weeks if that. Not bad for a baby that I’d given up buying newborn stuff for after a couple of sleep suits and vests as all the professionals said how he was going to be a 9Iber+. It’s going to be a sad day and I’ve been deciding what to do with them. Do I sell them, donate them to charity, bag them up for baby no. 2 (if we’re granted such luck a second time round) or get creative? I saw a lovely article on making things out of baby’s favourite clothes; patchwork blankets, bunting, etc. so you, and baby, have a constant reminder of those first few precious weeks of life. I totally love this idea, it’s like a keepsake in visual form, just need to get the sewing machine up and running.

We’re still having issues with sleeping arrangements at night. He’s used the bednest a handful of times. He still needs to be settled with me and this means I fall asleep with him so fail to slide him across into the bednest. When he wakes for a feed I tend to get up with him and we stay in the lounge for the rest of the night as I don’t wish to wake the other half up as he’s back at work at the moment and he needs the sleep. I’m hoping when he starts working away again I’ll be able to feed in bed and put him straight into the bednest afterwards as he settles so quickly after his feeds at night and it won’t matter if he grizzles a bit. That and the introduction of a grobag when he’s a little bigger may just solve the issues of a cold bed. We’ll see, watch this space.

We’ve had a few evenings (all over Christmas) of constant crying; colic, reflux, over tiredness, cluster feeding? The reason remains unknown but my nipples were suffering and my OH bit the bullet and purchased some dummies. We both hate dummies so this was a huge step and not one we took lightly. Noah hates them! Constantly spitting them out as he’s gaping wide as if he was on the breast. This breaks my heart every time because we took a long time getting him to latch on so well and now I was confusing the little mite. Needless to say I don’t persevere with the dummy thing I give up as soon as he spits it out. OH, thankfully is the one with the perseverance and continues to hold the dummy in his mouth in a bid that he will, soon, self soothe and not need me nor my sore nipples to lull him to sleep. We’ve now tried 2 different types and I’ve been recommended another which I shall try but I still live in hope he’ll find his thumb.

In a nut shell we’re making progress. He continues to fill our hearts with the deepest love, I don’t think I could love him any more deeply and then he does something new which just strengthens and deepens the feelings I have for him even more. I never knew our hearts were so deep. We are still totally besotted. A little tired I admit but I wouldn’t change it for the world. He is my life and I leave you with this, his first smile.

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Week Two

I really can’t believe how quickly time is going by. In fact as I am writing this it’s actually been 2 weeks and 4 days since our precious parcel was delivered into our care.

I’m not going to bore you all with as detailed a run down as I did in Noah’s first week, just a quickie, I promise!

We continue to learn something new every day. This week has seen us discharged from the care of the community midwives which after missed visits, no shows and let downs I’m not overly bothered about! I understand that events happen which render appointment times impossible to honour but a phonecall wouldn’t go amiss and the correct and relevant information when you finally do get some for, of contact would be preferable.

I was supposed to have a visit on Saturday (day 8), midwife rang after 1400hrs to tell me the visit would be about 1730! No show… We finally locked the door at 1930 and had supper. Phonecall at 1100 on Sunday apologising for missed visit… Valid excuse. MW day off on Sunday so could she visit on Monday?… No problem, she’ll see us early afternoon. Roll on Monday 1630 when I leave a message on MW answer machine asking when she was going to visit. Another MW calls back… My MW on a training course all day, she must have forgotten. Rearranged another home visit for Wednesday, my discharge appointment!! Wednesday comes round, phonecall in morning asking whether we could go up to the office! A mild annoyance but seeing as we were going to take Noah to OHs office to shoe him off we didn’t mind too much. Appointment at 1430, plenty of time to get him fed, changed and up there…. Or so we thought! 1400 and he kicks off! Needs feeding – one of his mammoth feeds ended up making us nearly half an hour late. Now if you know our MW service you’ll know there’s no manned reception, no way of announcing yourself and no way of letting anyone know you’re there. We’re late, the office appears empty so there we sat for half an hour more hoping that MW hasn’t just given up on us. Noah fills nappy, again! First changing experience outside the comfort of our home. Take changing bag to the toilet. Now this is the toilet in the MW unit so imagine my surprise when I discover no changing facilities, nothing, nowhere but the floor to change him on. At this point MW comes out of another room and ushers us in, I’ll leave the nappy to her. Anyway, after apologies concerning the weekend debacle Noah is doing fine, apparently he’s latching well, I’m fine and have stopped bleeding??? News to me but never mind! He is putting on weight nicely which alleviates my concerns over his possible lack of milk intake. Some garbled information about postnatal GP appointments and being informed the health visitor will visit us tomorrow at midday, that’s us discharged.

Then onto the office to be proudly shown off to OH’s colleagues… He did us so proud, he was as good as gold throughout the whole affair and they were all so lovely (having only met a handful of his colleagues before). Kisses, cuddles and presents were bestowed upon him which he accepted without a murmur of complaint. So proud!

After such an eventful day we decided that it would be fitting to give Noah his first experience of the bath. I’m not sure wh was more traumatised by this, Noah or ourselves! I can quite happily report the experience went down like a lead balloon.

Day 12 saw the health visitor visit to do carry out Noah’s hearing test and measurements. Of course he’s super alert and just wants wriggle constantly. Finally calm him with the breast while the test is done. All clear, both ears, another proud moment! HV concerned that his head circumference has grown 3cm in 2 weeks panicking OH. I’m not overly concerned, he was ventouse after all and the first. Erasure meant of 34cm was done immediately after birth and not done again since. Anyway it’ll get measured again next week to be sure. After some more garbled and contradictory information HV left with no plans to see us again.

This day also saw our first explosive poo, out both leg holes and up his back. Impressed us both I can tell you. Also this Little Rufus romper arrived from ‘Auntie’, isn’t it fab?!

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Cluster feeding continues along with it’s daily challenges. I can now totally understand why some women give up breastfeeding despite their good intentions. I shall blog separately about this issue in due course.

Co sleeping continues having failed to settle him in his basket since Day 4. Not that I mind. There’s nothing more beautiful than watching his sleeping face in bed. OH still unsettled about the arrangement and is looking into hiring a bednest for 6 months.

The amount of washing I’m doing continues to amaze me… How can someone so small create so much laundry? Can’t wait to start the real nappies!!

We’re still being showered with gifts, cards and well wishes. The generosity and kindness of people, some we’ve never even met (thank you TwitterFamily), continues to astonish me. It is now official… Noah has a better, bigger and more varied wardrobe than me!

Although I miss my bump terribly and all the comforting little undulations that it brought me I can happily say it has very nearly gone now. I’m still left with the Linea Nigra, a very enlarged belly button and a jelly like ponch but mostly it’s vanishing quite nicely, maternity jeans don’t stay up anymore so it’s time to dig out my pre pregnancy ones and grit my teeth. I intend to start some form of exercise as soon as I can find the time to counteract all these extra calories I seem to be wolfing my way through.

Cat is slowly getting used to the new addition and has stopped racing out the room as soon as Noah starts to cry.

Another rookie error was made. Kissing Noah’s perfect little mouth just after burping resulted in him vomiting IN my mouth!

Still finding it a struggle getting everything coordinated enough to get out the door but still managing a walk most days, god knows how I’ll manage when OH returns to work next week, it’s going to be a case of sacrificing a nap to go for a walk.

Despite everything we are still totally in awe of our perfect little boy. He’s only doing what babies do and my moans and gripes are more to do with my inability to cope with these challenges than the challenges themselves. I wish my mum was around to help me and give me advice but I can’t dwell on that as it won’t change the reality of the situation and I’ll just have to muddle through as best I can. I have my sister in law that I can rely on to cheer me up, tell me I’m doing ok when I actually feel like a total failure and to give me some candid advice, I just need to find the time to ring her more 😉

Biggest event of this week was finally registering Noah’s birth on the 3rd. Not that he was bothered but it was kinda epic for us. Have to say I wonder why, in today’s society, the father’s details are first and seemingly more important than the mother’s. Anyway, what a weird place our registry office is. Quite depressing to say the least. Can’t quite believe people chose to marry there, it’s the only place on earth where the fake flowers look died. Anyhow, he’s now ‘in the system’ Big Brother is now watching him. Now we have to await the certificates. Welcome to the official world Noah Ace.