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)