Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Month 5 & 6

So I've missed a month! Naughty mummy! Maybe though that shows how busy the little blighters make us at the above age.

So whats new with Isaac? We'll the last couple of months have brought the landmarks of weaning and rolling over (lots!), as well as supporting his weight on his arms. He never has been keen on 'tummy time' so I thought he would make any effort to stay on his front, but he has been doing so lately. You have to watch him like a hawk though as no matter how much space you give him, he will always gravitate towards the only unlikely danger in the room.

He still shows no real interest in sitting up himself, as much as I try to encourage him. He still topples over sideways, backwards or leans right forwards so he's almost doubled in half, lol. I know he'll do these things in his own time, but I am keen to make sure I am encouraging and doing everything I can for him. I don't want to think I have failed him somehow.

We had started him in his own bed at month 6 but he came down with a virus (caught from me) 2 days later so was very unsettled and unhappy. I didn't think it was the right time to combine with getting him used to his own bed, so we took him back into his smaller cot in our room. We then had his christening and people staying in the house, so we kept him in our room so as not to keep everyone awake all night traipsing in and out of rooms, lol.

Right now he's teething big time! He's been very whingy and has been crying a lot for a few weeks now. The drooling, biting and shoving everything in his mouth has been going on for a good couple of months now, but his gums are swollen recently and we're having to use teething gel several times a day and some nights even Calbrufen. Yesterday I spotted a little hole in his gum where a tooth is trying to break through (he won't let me photograph it). Its not quite through yet, but its on its way, bless him! We should have a tooth to photograph for next months blog!

He's been enjoying his swing time in the park, has trips out somewhere every day and loves nothing more than getting out and about in his pram. We have a god routine now where he gets up, has his breakfast, has a play on his mat, we play with some of his toys, he has some bottle and he naps for an hour (if i'm very lucky) in the early afternoon. We try to do something mid afternoon and then we leave to collect his dad from work at 4 O'clock.

Next week he starts swimming lessons which I'm looking forward to. It'll be something else for him to do and a new experience for him. The school he will be going to when he's old enough, (Hothfield School) is literally 2 minutes from our front door and it has a heated baby pool where they teach swimming from birth to 9 years old. Lets hope he enjoys it.

For his christening he was a model baby and didn't cry once. He was passed around everyone for a hold afterwards and seemed to enjoy the day. He also has taken remarkably to his godmother Kelly and godfather Dave and even fell asleep on both of them (almost unheard of). He behaved the whole weekend when everyone was here. Of course once everyone left our house, he started misbehaving and screaming again (the little blighter). I worked out though that was simply because he was being held or fussed over all day over the weekend which I cant do when I'm on my own, hence the model behaviour.

A big love which has developed is dogs, which I'm delighted about. He squeals in excitement when he see's Chewy coming near to him (although Chewy being an older boy is less than keen). He also has met his aunt and uncles dog Maggie, which he loved and a friend Claires dog, that he also loved. He's definately going to be a dog person! :o)

So as the little blighter is giving off again, I must go. I'll leave you with some video of him with Chewy and a few pics as always.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Month 4

Isaac is now just over 4 months old. How time flies! 4 months sounds quite young though and he's such a big baby, he looks much older. He's bigger than a lot of 6 month olds I see. He's also in 6-9 month clothes now which fit him perfectly!

He can hold his head completely rigid now and will be sitting completely unaided soon now I would think. When he sits on my knee, I just have to support him very gently so he doesn't topple backwards or forwards. His favourite thing at the minute is standing up and having us support him. He can stand on the ground if you hold his hands and stands happilly on your knee if you support him gently around the waist. He loves it and is all smiles and giggles when he's doing it. He doesn't show any interest in rolling over or crawling. He doesn't actually seem a big fan of the ground or laying down in general. He's even started to object to taking his bottle in a reclined position.

This month we tried a small amount of mashes banana mixed with his milk which he adored. We had a little bit (about the size of a small bite) twice. He didn't go to the loo for 3 days after that, so no more banana until he's much holder. It may have been nothing to do with that but I'll err on the side of caution. He's not a big fan of baby rice or the flavoured baby porridge I got him, so I think I'll leave trying food again for a month or so.

There are still no teeth although he's drooling a serious amount and biting everything, has been for weeks now. He's also been very unsettled for the last couple of weeks. Crying a lot, screaming in fact for what seems like no reason. Nothing soothes him sometimes. We wonder if its painful wind. Its almost impossible to tell. He has everything we can provide to help with his wind, but he's still a very, very windy baby.

He stayed away from home overnight for the first time since he was born a couple of days ago. Unfortunately he didn't stop screaming until after 1am when he finally fell asleep. This had went on since tea time, so grandad had a baptism by fire there! He's only due 2 overnight stays this year (once for Alice Cooper and once for The Darkness) away from us so hopefully he'll behave on them. It is incredibly draining at the minute though as there just isn't a spare minute from him and he cries so much right now I do all night feeds and all getting up as Darren obviously needs to be up early for work and I can't remember the last proper nights sleep I got.

Apparently babies get to an age where they go through this unsettled stage and we've got it now. His smiles do make all the hard work worth it though and I know this is just a phase that will pass. The complete change to your life is shocking though, even though you knew it would happen beforehand, nothing prepares you for it.

The babysitting thing is so hard. People either have dogs that we are a bit wary of leaving Isaac with as they are quite rough (just excitable) or they have no experience of children or they live too far away. The only babysitters we have is Darren's dad Derek and his wife Kath and there's only so much you want to impose on 1 couple.

In other news this month we've been to Asda to do the grocery shop quite a few times and Isaac loves it. He loves to nosey at all the people and shelves. He always behaves really well.

He also loves his door bouncer and gets quite excitable in it. Although you have to sit down beside him and watch him in it so he bounces, otherwise he just screams to come out.

So not too much of note in the past month to document, just a very screamy baby. I keep telling myself 'It will pass'.

Morning doze time at about 7am!

Sleepy boy mid afternoon for about 20 minutes

Asda Shopping Trip

Activity Ring in Mr Bump outfit

Bouncing :o)

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Month 3

Isaac is now 12 weeks old and still growing fast. At least the 3-6 month clothes he wears are his correct age range... although most 'just' fit him and he has outgrown some (including his beloved Kermit all-in-one and Ramones tops)Booooo. We are going to get his ACDC, Ramones, Cookie Monster, Metal Horns and Kermit tops put in a big clip frame and hung on the wall in his nursery when we move. It'll be something cool to keep, even when he is grownup!

This past month in the way of developments, he has become much sturdier and although he cannot sit upright unaided, he can sit on your knee and support his own head and back if you hold him. He loves his bumbo given to him by Mark & Helen although I have to support his head or put it against something when he sits in it. I just hope his bum fits into it when he's ready to use it as it seems the perfect size now.

He has started to giggle now as well which is sooooo cute. He smiles all the time which is lovely as well. He seems to recognise us and there are people he seems to have developed preferences for... so far apart from us, he loves Darrens dad and seemed to enjoy being held by his friend at Dereks wedding. He definately seems to have a preference for men, although some do set him off bawling, lol.

The latest development this week has been much better sleeping. He is now doing 5-6 hours straight which is fantastic. He refuses to sleep until 10pm at the earliest, although it is usually more likely to be between 11 and 12 midnight, but then he stays down until 5am or 6am sometimes! Good boy!!!

This month he met Kelly & Dave for the first time. Unfortunately he was being a crabby baby that day. We can't complain though as he did a full day at a wedding and didn't cry at all. He also was good the following day at a family meal, just having a bit of a whinge because he was hungry (all the way through the meal as usual).

He has his 3 month jabs next week which is something i'm not looking forward to after the last time. Especially since I had Darren with me then and this time I'll be alone. :o(

I'll leave you with some 3 month piccies

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Month 2

Isaac is now almost 10 weeks old and growing massively by the day. He is now wearing age 3-6 month clothes which 'just' fit him. He also has a couple of outfits which fit him that are 6-9 months! He is definately a big baby! The health visitor assures me he is not overweight and I am not overfeeding him. He is in proportion and will lose a lot of weight when he starts running about. The last thing I want is to leave the child with a legacy of being overweight.

The last month has been fraught with ill health for both me and Darren which took a while to get sorted out. It turns out I had a piece of retained placenta which made me very ill and causes several infections. LOts of antibiotics caused lots of problems and led to the end of me breast feeding at 8 weeks due to Isaac having a reaction to them. I tried to express while I was on the antiobiotics but it was then I discovered the retained placenta had affected my milk production anyway, so we decided to hit it on the head. He is doing well on the bottle now anyway. We switched him to Aptamil Comfort milk which is better for his tum as he has a tendency to get constipated and to have bad wind. I also bought some Dr Browns bottles, especially for eliminating wind. He seems to be doing well on a mix of the bottle, the new food and some dentinox colic drops. The spitting up and vomitting has all but gone!

He has progressed this past month from smiling to laughing which is adorable! He loves having his nose pressed and his chin tickled. He always gives me a big cheery smile when I pick him out of his cot on a morning :o)

I'm trying to introduce a routine very gradually. AT the minute we make sure he has a day outfit every day and changes into his pyjamas every night with his nappy change & wash so he knows its a different time of day. In the next week Im going to introduce a story at bedtime even though he won't know what Im saying, it will add to the routine and they like the sound of our voice. The week after I'm going to start puting him upstairs in his cot at about 9pm. The cot is beside our bed and I will need to go up and see to him im sure or wait with him until he falls asleep but at least it will establish a 'going upstairs early' routine. I will reduce the time to 8pm after a couple of weeks and then to 7pm a couple of weeks after. Hopefully by then we'll have him in the routine we want to keep him in until he's ready for his new room, which Im thinking of doing when we move to Darrens dads place. That should be in the next 2 months I would say.

He has now outgrown his Moses Basket and is in a rocking wooden crib beside our bed. The net stage will be his own cot in his own room.

We're learning more about his little personality every day. What he likes and doesn't. He likes having a bare bum! lol. He doesnt like wearing trousers. He isn't sure about the bath, but no longer cries when he's in there. He hates coming out of the bath and being wrapped in a towel though! He likes being sang to and dancing on your knee and hates to be left alone in his swing when he's woken up. I always try to have him out when he's awake so he gets as much stimulation as possible. He loves to look at his reflection. When he's on his activity mat (which he has a go on for about 10-15 minutes a day or as long as he'll tolerate) his favourite thing to do it to look at himself in the mirrored surface of a flower toy.

He also had his jabs this month which was awful. He screamed in pain when he had it done which was heartbreaking. Poor ba. Im definately not looking forward to taking him again in just over 2 weeks :o(

No doubt the next month will bring more progression for my little man. I look forward to it!

Smiley Boy

Beautiful Boy after his bath

Upset after his jabs

With Tony when he came to visit having a whinge

Many facial expressions

Friday, 8 April 2011

A passage into motherhood.

So its been a while since I last blogged which was about Isaacs first month. As I type, on 8th April, he is 5 weeks and 5 days old.

This blog though, isn't about an update on Isaacs progress, but more about motherhood, something I never thought I'd experience.

Now I have never been maternal. Until the age of 32 or 33, I never even wanted kids. I don't go gooey over babies and coo at them when they are brought into the office at work. I can appreciate a pretty or handsome baby, but I just don't get that pull in my stomach that most women seem to get. I am however capable of it, as put a little puppy on TV or in front of me and Im a big ball of mush. I want to hold it, smell its head, kiss it... all the things I should have felt about babies.... right?

Well no actually. I worried about this lack of maternal instinct a lot before I got pregnant, and even whilst I was pregnant. I didn't feel excited like most mums. I just longed for pregnancy to be over so the hell I was going through would come to an end. I couldn't imagine or picture him as an actual person. I didn't feel that longing to meet him that most women talk about. I know a couple of other friends I have feel similarly. Some decided not to have kids and some did. What would happen?

Well, the day came. The labour and operation were awful. I didn't get to hold Isaac when he was born as he wasn't breathing properly. I remember feeling worried and concerned about what was wrong. I got all the normal protective feelings and I remember thinking what a handsome baby he was when I finally got to see him. I made sure from that day on he had everything he needed and he was well looked after. Of course I loved him, but I still felt like I didn't react in the way most women do and it kind of worried me. I changed him, fed him, dressed him, took him out. I felt proud of him and my accomplishment in bringing him into this world.

As time has went on, I have grown closer to him and feel an overwhelming protective instinct towards him. I want to make sure he's ok and has everything he needs. I worry ridiculously if he seems unwell or unhappy but wheres that surging feeling women talk about?

At the weekend, I found out. From out of nowhere I was overcome by a wave of emotions like nothing I've ever experienced before. Something as stupid as mothers day messages on TV set me off. I realised PROPERLY for the first time, I was a mum. I also realised how much I loved my little man. I would die for him and couldn't imagine my life without him. I ache inside when I think about how much I love him. I spent all evening eye watering and crying trying to convince Darren there was nothing wrong and I was just hormonal.. I mean how do you explain that 5 weeks after the birth of your baby, you finally have been hit with what most women experience from day 1.

Its an overwhelming feeling and scary that its possible to feel so overcome by these emotions. Its so unlike me. I have been turned into a big bundle of mush by a little guy. He cries and I ache, he smiles and it melts my heart. I just look at him and feel nothing but utter love.

I read a quote that makes so much sense to me the other day:

"Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body."

So true.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

My Visitors

Heres some piccies of people who came to my house to visit me in the first month.

Rachel and Simon came to see me with my cousin Paige

Uncle Richard and Auntie Atsuko

Grandad came to see me when I was a few hours old in hospital

Gran and grandad came over from Ireland to see me

Cousin Kayleigh with me. Aunt Sarah, Uncle Andy and cousin Bryony also visited, but we didn't get their piccies.

Me with my proud grandad

And grandma

My first month trips out

My grandparents took me to The Tramshed for a Carvery on their last day here.

I went to a tea room at Bolton Abbey on my grandparents visit

Bolton Abbey
My first trip to Leeds. Here I am with dad at the station

On my first train ride

At B&Q helping mum and dad pick wallpaper for moving house soon

With dad on my first trip to the pub

With mum on my first trip to the pub

With Auntie Lynn on my first visit out to Great Grans

With Great Gran

In my car seat on the way to great grans

My first outing in my pram

My first trip to Asda

The First Month

Its taken me a while to get around to posting another blog since the birth one, but to say having a newborn in the house is an eye-opener is an under statement! Getting time to do anything much is a push. The short amount of time Isaac sleeps is spent trying to put on a load of washing (we're averaging 2 to 3 lots of a day at the minute), cook something, clean or tidy something or preparing a bottle for when he wakes up.

Talking of bottles, I was breast feeding Isaac and I still am, but just not exclusively. He has bottles for the wee small hours of night, although I breast feed him when we wake at 6ish. It started as a way for me to have a break but now it is a necessity to feed him some formula. I am also expressing milk for him, but given that he has up to 30 fl oz of milk a day, I simply cannot produce all that myself. Yesterday he had 34 fl oz! On one hand you think it has to be too much, but on the other hand, everywhere you read, tells you to feed on demand, as much as they want. If its too much, they will be sick. Oh yes, he throws up, usually all round me, lol. Its not excessive though and he's only had about 5 occasions where he has thrown up a large amount at one time.

So, we have established Isaac is a greedy little sod. He also has earned the name Grimble Grumble for his hatred of being winded, waiting on food or being changed. He isn't one to be quiet when he is annoyed. He doesnt like bath supports, but seems to prefer being held in the bath and floated back and forth. He HATES being changed or undressed and pees almost EVERY time we change him which makes doing it a challenge. If he's hungry, he wants his food yesterday, he is not keen to wait at all. Formula does my head in for this reason..... what baby understands waiting 25 minutes for the kettle to cool and then having to cool the actual bottle under the cold tap for him to have his dinner...certainly not Isaac.

He has started a lot of straining and grunting over the past few days which apparently is normal. Its down to him having an immature digestive system and having to learn he doesnt have to push and strain to go to the toilet. it is upsetting though as he appears in discomfort and pain, even though Ive been assured he isn't and most babies do this from 3 weeks to up to 3 months in age.

His sleeping pattern involves him sleeping more during the day than at night. He generally has his worst grumbly time from 11pm to 2:30am (sometimes going on until 3:30am). He then settles either for an hour or 2 until 4:30, or if we're really lucky, for 4 hours until 6:30. Then its up at 8:30 after a 2 hour cuddle and snooze on the bed. He generally then feeds and grumbles for a lot of the morning until about 11am or noon when he goes down again for another snooze. During the day its a case of a few hours awake, a few asleep. Although he has mastered the art of knowing when our dinner is ready even though the time can vary up to 4 hours in the evening from 5pm to 9pm!!! I think we've accepted the fact we'll have to eat seperately for the next few months.

Darren goes back to work tomorrow after taking an extra 2 weeks off work after his 2 weeks paternity leave. Its going to be hard work looking after Isaac alone as I don't have my parents here to help out every now and again and I don't like to impose on Darrens dad and his partner, apart from maybe a few hours 1 night per month to give us a chance for some alone time out together. It certainly illustrates how important having family close-by when you have a baby is.

My parents visited last week and met Isaac for the first time. They are over the moon with him and didn't want to leave. I've never seen my dad so soft. He didn't want to put him down. I just wish they lived closer, but I don't think I could ever live in Northern Ireland again and my mum would never move away. My parents also brought presents from extended family and friends and my friend Raymond sent a very generous £200 over for Isaac, so he now has a bank account with £400 in it! He officially has more money than us!! We're going to save a little each month for him so when he reaches 18, he can have a car or something he wants.

So the first month is past us. Tomorrow Isaac will be 1 month old. The time has flown in. Days seem to pass in the blinking of an eye. I find myself wondering what I did with all that spare time before he was here. I also find myself wishing I had done more constructive things with all that time I had. We're getting to know Isaacs little personality and what he likes and doesn't. I can't wait for him to get to the stage where he is reacting to us and smiling (where its not wind), where he plays and says his first word. Its bloody hard work but I wouldn't change it for the world.

Some piccies of his first month below

My Rainbow Rocking Chair

With Rachel

Chewy watching over me

I Rawk don't you know

I need a poo
My Pram Suit

Me with Mum

Me with Granny & Grandad when they visited from Ireland

A rare eyes open photo


Wednesday, 9 March 2011

The Birth Story

On Friday 25th Febuary, I went to the hospital following the results of a blood test which confirmed I did indeed have Cholestasis. They spoke to a consultant who decided it would be best to induce me, so I was booked in for the following day, which I don't mind telling you was a bit of a laxative! We decided to go out to watch a movie that night to distract ourselves (Rite btw and it was ok, nothing special).

On Saturday morning we arrived at the Induction suite and I was hooked up to a monitor for the babies heartbeat and my tightenings. They gave me a Prostaglandin Pessary at 11am and left me to my own devices. That day th labour ward was exceptionally busy. All rooms were full, there were not enough staff to deal with all the women that were in and people were turning up in labour unannounced. For that reason, it seems I was forgotten about as I barely saw anyone all day. I got lots of apologies and explanations of how busy it was and unfortunately as I was the least 'advanced' labourer, I was bottom of the rung.

As the day passed into night, the contractions got much worse and I the vomitting had started in earnest. Darren had to go home at the normal 8pm visiting hours as I was still in the induction suite, even though I was experiencing bad contractions. The woman in the bed next to mine came in a few hours after me and was in a similar position. Her waters broke naturally at 1:30am and her husband was called back in. She had her baby that night. I could hear her up the corridor.

Sunday brought another busy day. Darren arrived as soon as he could at 10am. Someone came and told me they had no-one to come and remove the pessary that I'd had inserted 24 hours previously and check on me so they asked me if I could take it out myself as it stopped working after 24 hours. Soo that done, I waited. Someone came a few hours later and broke my waters. I've seen this done on TV and I can safely say, when they did it to me it was nothing like what they do on TV... a small nick with a hook??? Yep they do that which is bearable but then pull, pull and prod about your insides trying to force all the water out, which in my case was a lot. That part was extremely painful. I was 3cm dilated at this stage. This would have been 2pm on Sunday afternoon. 2 hours later at 4pm, the contractions started in earnest. I was taken down to the labour ward somewhere around tea time, I can't remember exactly what time.

I was using a TENS machine for pain relief at this stage but I now started on gas and air, which was very odd. It doesnt remove any pain at all, but it does mess with your head and confuses you so there is something distracting from the pain. It is just like feeling very, very drunk and disorientated, but not in a pleasant way, more in a smothery kind of blankety way, yet that feels better than the pain, so I supped away for all I was worth.

Labour continued all through the night. A new midwife came on at 9pm and was with us through the night. I was checked in the early hours of the morning and I was still only 3 cm dilated.... the same as I'd been at 2pm in the afternoon. It was soul distroying to be feeling all that pain and not be progressing at all. These things are more manageable I think if you are getting somewhere with it, but to be feeling it all for nothing was not good. It was then that I decided on an epidural which they came in to administer. This took an hour and a half to get right as it had to be sited 3 seperate times. They kept putting it in the wrong place and it gave me electric shocks all down my leg. They couldn't risk leaving it there as it could have led to nerve damage or paralysis, so I had to keep having it put in again until they got it right.

The epidural was amazing. It took away the pain for a couple of hours, but then they decided to not top it up again as they said they wanted me to be able to feel to push when the time came. The normal monitor they put on women wasn't picking up the babies heartbeat and they were a bit concerned about that due to the length of time I'd been in labour, so they had to put a clip on the babies head to monitor it. Legs akimbo on stirrups yet again... They're right when they say you don't give a damn though. I was beyond caring. The midwife tried over and over and couldnt attach it, so that was another pleasant experience. A doctor had come in several times to check on different things about me and thankfully he took over and did it right away first time.

They decided to check me again at 6:30am on Monday morning and found I was 9cm dilated. Unfortunately there was a rim of my cervix which wouldnt dilate. Also the babies head wouldn't drop down low enough, as it couldnt enter my pelvis. It just kept pushing down on top and rotating around and around which was what was causing the major part of my pain. Little Isaac still has obvious markings on his head from this.

Finally they decided at about 7:30am that I would need to go for an emergency c-section as the babies heartbeat was slowing down and he could be becoming distressed if he stayed that way any longer. Also they didn't see that I was going to progress any further.

I've never had an operation before and I was terrified of having one. With the pain though, I welcomed it. I just felt so disappointed to have had 2 full days of labour and to not have been able to do it normally. I'd done it all bar the pushing bit. Everything which followed was a bit of a blur. Darren was all scrubbed up and I was soon in theatre surrounded by what seemed like loads of people. I shuffled across onto the theatre bed and tried to zone out. They spent a lot of time testing whether I could feel their touch and told me to make sure to tell them if I could, which just makes you nervous thinking youre going to. Its one of those things where you have no idea what to expect.

Then they started....It wasn't the most pleasant of experiences I have to say, but it didn't hurt, I just concentrated on Darren and prayed it would be over as soon as possible. He was born very quickly and I saw a very quick glance of him over the top of the cloth. He had a 'crouching tiger, hidden dragon' stance when he came out which is startled baby sydrome where they are shocked to have come out of the warm environment of the womb and into the open air. One thing I was really aware of was that he didn't cry. They took him to a table to the side and 3 people worked on him. It took some time for him to breathe properly and quite a few minutes before he uttered a tiny mewl. He didn't cry much at all to start with as he was filled with fluid due to not having being squeezed through the birth canal. The most horrid part of the section was what they call the 'washing out' stage at the end which takes about 40 minutes. It was uncomfortable and I did anything to distract myself that I could. I at least got to see Darren holding our son for the first time :o).

They got me all tidied up, cathetered up and ready for the ward and wheeled me out. Isaac was brought up to me shortly after I got onto the ward for a cuddle. I can honestly say it felt really surreal to be holding our son. I was still a bit zoned out but I thought he was beautiful. I know all mums say that, but it is a real feeling to be holding a tiny perfect person you created.

All in all, yes of course he was worth the pregnancy, the labour and the delivery, but he will definately be a very much loved and wanted only child. :o)