Family

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I started as One

Individual, Lone, Singular

We met and became Two

Partners, Companions, Soulmates

Then our Two turned into Three

Family

 

 

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34 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of http://www.yourbabylibrary.com)

It’s getting closer and closer now! I’ve had an exciting week. I bought Charlie’s pram, compact cot, and even a rocking crib! My sister found someone selling a second hand rocking crib for £15 and it’s in great condition! Practically perfect. It’s in the corner of the lounge now and the pram is in the dining room. Once I’ve sorted out my bedroom I’ll be able to build the cot and sort that out too. It’s feeling much more real now!

Me and my mum went to the first Antenatal Class too, which was really good. The lady taking the class was lovely and the majority of the other couple were too. The couple next to us are due a week after me and we were talking about how emotional we’d both been. It’s their first baby too, and I think you can tell when it’s a couples first baby, they seem much more excited and innocent. I suppose the couples with other children know what’s coming…haha.

We learnt loads too, my mum said “I’m 49 and I’m still learning!”. Apparently your happiness and comfort has everything to do with how fast and painful the labour will be. The woman said that they try to keep you at home as long as possible with contractions to keep “happy hormones” high. If you go into the hospital, your adrenaline will build and you’ll feel more nervous and out of your comfort zone and that will bring the “happy hormones” down which can make labour slower and more painful, and sometimes put it on hold all together! I never knew any of that, but it kind of makes sense. I think of it as a similar thing to the placebo effect. The mind is a powerful thing. I told Paul about it and that he has to make sure I’m constantly happy and that he is at my beck and call constantly…he thought I was making it up to try and have him be my slave.

I saw a new midwife today, who was so lovely. She’s older than my usual midwife, and has 4 children so it’s easier to trust what she says, because she’s been through it all herself, if that makes sense. We talked about some of the Birth Plan, mainly where I’ll be giving birth (hospital), who will be with me, what I need to take, what kind of things I can expect. Next time we’ll be talking about pain relief and the possibility of assisted birth too. She was telling me about breastfeeding too, and how it’s the first few days that are the hardest. She said a lot of women crack and give up, which she totally understand because it’s exhausting enough after labour let alone the emotionally draining experience of struggling to nurse. But she did say that if you can persevere through the rough days, it’s gets so easy and natural, so fingers crossed I can, because I’ve really got used to the idea of breastfeeding. She also said that she would never make me feel guilty if I can’t nurse, or choose not to either (a lot of midwives look down on you if you choose formula instead), so I like her a lot.

When she put the machine on my bump to hear Charlie’s heartbeat, he kept kicking it as if he was trying to make it move, which made us both laugh. I love being able to feel him so much. She said that every time he kicked his heartbeat got a little faster, which means he’s really healthy. He’s also seeming a bit on the large side if her measurements are anything to go by, which doesn’t surprise me, my mums always saying how massive I was when she had me!

This week has really got me excited though, it’s all very real and my due date is less than 6 weeks away. I can’t wait til that moment when I see him, and my life changes forever.

33 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of http://www.yourbabylibrary.com)

I read that Charlie will be growing about half a pound a week now, and I can tell! It’s had to explain how it feels, I suppose only other pregnant women or women that have had children would understand, but it’s like you can literally feel the weight of him and it’s just getting heavier and heavier. It’s times like when I’m in bed and it takes me more time that usual just to roll over onto my other side, and getting out of a chair.

I’m a bit more chilled out this week than I have been. I was starting to panic about how little time I have left and how I have bought nothing yet! I mean, I have clothes and small things…but no pram or cot or anything! I’ve applied for a Sure Start Maternity Grant that we can get here, and I got a letter today saying that I’m getting the £500 on Monday! So exciting! I’ve already got my shopping lists ready online, with all the deals I can get since all the supermarkets have Baby Events on right now. So I should be able to get my pram, cot and mattress with that money and still have quite a bit left over!

I’ve been a bit ill again though, on a down note. It’s made me really nervous because my midwife told me it’s common to get ill at the end like you do at the beginning, but remembering how I was at the beginning makes me scared about it! I can’t cope with being that ill again, it was unrelenting and exhausting, I’m already knackered nowadays with little energy, so I really hope it’s just a little bug I’ve got that will pass in a few days time.

I went to Paul’s last night. It was strange seeing him again after so long, but we got back into our old routine quite quickly and I think because we know each other so well and we’re both quite similar, we got along fine. The whole point was that he could feel Charlie kicking but typically, Charlie didn’t move! He wriggles around loads every night but last night he just stayed still. It really bugged me because I feel like if Paul doesn’t feel him, he won’t bond or something. Is that stupid? I don’t know.

Anyway, hopefully next time I write, I’ll have bought all the essentials for Charlie, and I have a midwife appointment next week where we go over the Birth Plan…so that should be interesting…or terrifying. Probably both. It’s always both nowadays.

31 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of wow.yourbabylibrary.com)

It’s been a nice week! Quite chilled but fun too. My grandad and my stepdads parents came over for Emily’s birthday buffet. Andy’s mum is knitting cardigans for Charlie and her grandsons daughter whose also due in October. She was saying how she needs some buttons, so I got the button tin from my room. It was my grans, if she ever threw clothes away, she’d take the buttons off and put them in this tin, and she’d bought quite a few too. It’s an old fashioned circular biscuit tin and it’s totally full of every button you can imagine. I used to love looking through them all when I was small and when my gran passed away last year, it was the first thing my grandad gave me. So now when Charlie’s here, I’ll have a cardigan knitted by Andy’s mum with my grans buttons on. I think that sounds so lovely, and definitely something to keep always.

Me and my mum went to look at baby stuff, which was really good! We went to Mothercare, Mamas & Papas and Babies R Us. After checking out all the different prams, we found the perfect one. It’s lovely and black and red, it’s big but not too big to comfortably walk around shops with, and it turns into a pushchair for when Charlie grows a bit. It was £400 in Mothercare, but when I got home I looked online and Boots have a Baby Event going on until the middle of next month and the pram I want is on sale for £233!! I couldn’t believe it! So as soon as I get some money I’m getting it from there, so exciting! We also saw a few “compact cots” which are just the same as normal cots, can hold a baby for the same amount of time, but are designed for smaller rooms which is ideal for me! Found a few bargains for them online too. Online shopping is awesome.

Saw my midwife today. I told my mum that she could come in with me to hear the heartbeat this time. It look my midwife quite a while to find his heartbeat, she said my placenta was in the way. My mum thought it was pretty amazing once we could hear it though. Next time I see her, we’re talking about my birth plan! I can’t believe how close that seems! I don’t really have any preferences, I don’t think. I know I want to use gas and air as relief. I’ve nothing against having an epidural, but only as a last option I think. Only if I can’t go any longer without it.

I’m going to see Paul tomorrow. It’ll be the first time in months that we’ve seen each other. Giving him his birthday present and hopefully he’ll be able to feel Charlie kick at some point while I’m there. I think seeing me with a big baby bump will kind of surprise him. I’ve kept him as involved as I can, and the whole thing has sunk in now…but I think seeing me all pregnant will have an effect on him. I hope so anyway. Could be awkward, but it will probably be fine. I’m looking forward to seeing him feel Charlie for the first time anyway.

Worries of a Mother-to-be

What if he doesn’t like me?
Those little kicks from within
that get stronger by the day,
giving such comfort that he
is safe and sound, have been
the only thing that could portray
whatever his feelings may be
for a woman whose life will begin
when he enters the world to stay.

What if I am not good enough?
The constant and unyielding care
that he will need, my whole life now
entirely dedicated to him, above
anything and everything, no spare
moments for selfishness, I wonder how
I will find the patience, the love,
the unrelenting maternal instincts to share,
I hope I surprise myself somehow.

What if I am just a bad mum?
The balance of love and kindness,
discipline and anger, how will I know
when to fight or when to succumb,
when to let it go and not stress,
without hitting an all time low
and being wrapped around his thumb
wondering if more really is less,
desperately trying not to let fear show.

28 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of http://www.yourbabylibrary.com)

I’m into my 3rd Trimester! Can’t believe how fast it’s gone actually. According to Emma’s Diary, if Charlie is born now, it’s almost definite he will survive! I find it really hard to think of that as true, he’s so tiny still! I mean, I know 15 inches seems quite big, but even so! He should weigh about 1000g now too! In case you can’t picture that, it’s the amount of flour you need to bake 60 fairy cakes!

He now has eyelashes, he can breathe, and he can see light filtering in to him through my womb. It just seems like he’s a proper baby now, and all he needs to do for the next 12 weeks is grow and grow so he’s ready to meet us all in October.

Me and my mum were talking about the labour last night, and all the options I’ll have and what I’ll want. I think I’ll just see how I am when it happens, but I’m not really against anything. My sister says she doesn’t like women having epidurals because it’s like cheating. I think that’s ridiculous, how is it cheating to have less pain? That’s just science and progress! It’s common in America too, over there if you don’t have an epidural it’s really strange. The only think I’ve not really considered is using a birthing pool, it’s meant to ease the pain but I can’t imagine being comfortable in water like that.

I’ve got another midwife appointment tomorrow, same as before as far as I’m aware. I’m going to record Charlie’s heartbeat on my phone this time though so I can send it to Paul, since he won’t hear it at all. Then I need to book my Whooping Cough vaccine and on Monday I’m at the hospital for all my injections and blood tests and fun stuff. It’s my mums birthday on Tuesday so that’ll be a nice evening, going out for a meal with the family.

On another note, we got a puppy on Saturday! We called her Tessy and she’s the cutest thing ever! A tiny 7 week Jack Russell. I’ve been spending pretty much all day every day with her while everyone else works and has stuff to do, so we’ve bonded and she loves me. My mum jokes that she’s my little baby and no one else’s. I was a bit hesitant at first, getting a puppy a few months before I have a baby, but my stepdad says he can get her housetrained well before then, and Charlie will always be priority. Running around after her all day is good practice for when Charlie is here too! So that’s good. It’s been a nice week.

26 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of http://www.yourbabylibrary.com)

I heard his heartbeat! It was amazing! The midwife was pretty straightforward, we went over my session at the hospital next week (lots of blood tests!) and then she had me lie on the bed to listen to the heartbeat. She said “Now don’t worry if it takes me a while to find the heartbeat, that’s normal…” put the monitor on my belly and said “There it is!” straight away! It was really quick, like twice the speed of my own, and really clear and loud. Loved it.

Another first this week was that my mum and younger sister felt Charlie kicking! I feel him all the time, but on Sunday night I could feel him kicking my arm too so I told mum and she came and sat next to me with her hand on my stomach. It took a few minutes and we nearly gave up but then Charlie gave an almighty kick and she got all excited! So Emily came over too and felt him, she seems pretty shocked. So it’s been a pretty eventful week!

I got my first Healthy Start vouchers through today too. Because I’m on benefits I get £3.10 a week for fruit, vegetables and milk (including baby formula). After Charlie is born, I get twice as much! Plus vouchers for vitamins. So it’s pretty good actually, I should be able to buy most of his formula with it. I’m very lucky!

The plan was to go and see Paul this weekend so he can hopefully feel kicking too, but we ended up having another argument so we’ll just wait and see how it goes. I hate that we argue all the time, and I’m not going to put all the details on here, but let’s just say the whole having a baby while being separated thing isn’t easy! We’ll be ok in the long run.

Fingers crossed.

25 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of http://www.yourbabylibrary.com)

I’m so glad that I’m feeling Charlie move more and more nowadays. It’s not little movements that make me question whether it could be him or just normal body feelings, it’s definite kicks and wriggles! According to Emma’s Diary, you might be able to hear his heartbeat now, if you put your ear against my stomach, haven’t tried it because I don’t like the idea of someone squashing their heads against me…maybe that’s just me being weird.

I’m getting more and more excited about what he’ll look like, what colour hair and eyes he’ll have, how big he’ll be…all of it! My usual dark and worrying dreams (I’m told it’s normal to have these dreams during pregnancy) have been swapped with lovely ones. The other morning I woke up smiling after a dream about just holding Charlie in my arms reading The Night Before Christmas poem to him. I can’t wait to dress him up as Santa and reindeer and a snowman and an elf! I love Christmas…can you tell?

My cousins wife was due on 5th of July and so far there’s no sign of her little girl coming any time soon! She’ll be induced on the 17th if nothing happens before then. So I worked out that if Charlie is late, I’d be induced on the 3rd of November (he’s due on 22nd of October). I really hope I don’t have to wait that long though, I’ve gotten used to the idea of him coming in October!

Me, my mum and my sister Cat took my niece Chloe to school today, she’s there for about an hour just to meet her new classmates and get used to the building for when she starts there in September. It got me and my mum talking about Charlie going to school and how I hope he’s not a chav and hope he doesn’t want a shaved head and things like that. My mum says I won’t be able to control what he wants or likes. I just hope the way I bring him up makes him less likely to become like some of the children round here. I will not have a chav for a son!

Not much else to say this week. I have my midwife appointment tomorrow, so there’ll be stuff about that next week! Hope I get to hear his heartbeat…

23 Weeks Pregnant

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(image courtesy of http://www.yourbabylibrary.com)

I swear Charlie is nocturnal! I hardly feel any movement during the day, as soon as I get into bed and snuggle down to sleep he starts punching and kicking me! It still feels quite faint at the moment, but it’s definitely him. My bumps getting bigger all the time and I’m loving my new leggings, they’re so comfy! Just makes me wonder why I haven’t worn maternity clothes all my life, I’ve been missing out!

Had another quiet week, mostly played Assassin’s Creed and eaten. My appetite is ridiculous. Everything I’ve read says it starts going up now, but I had no idea it’d be this extreme. I’ve always been a big eater anyway, but I’m eating more than I ever thought possible and still feeling hungry afterwards! Everything says that pregnant women shouldn’t “eat for two” but I can understand why they do. It’s not just greed, it’s hunger! It’s difficult to not eat when you feel like you’re starving.

Had a nice day on Monday, my niece is starting school in September and one of her teachers were coming for a home visit to meet her and my sister and just kind of have a little introduction. My sister moved in not long before Christmas, so we haven’t done anything with the garden, but now it’s getting sunny and it grew up to my waist! So my dad came down with his strimmer and me and my mum and stepdad did other parts of the garden and sorted the house out. After my stepdad had gone to work, it was just me, my mum and my dad. It was strangely nice. They’ve been separated since I was young, I barely remember them being together. So seeing them working together and chatting about funny things that they got up to years ago was a nice experience for me.

Also started watching One Born Every Minute with my mum on Wednesday nights, I’ve never been interested before, but I am now! Luckily none of the women I’ve seen seem to suffer all that much, so it’s not a traumatising watch, thank god! Emotional though, me and mum are tearing up the whole hour that it’s on! Who knows what I’ll be like when I go into labour…