6-12 weeks, bleeding, feeding, jabs…..

This is the other milestone to log down in your book/memory. 12weeks that other diamond of a goal to reach.

IMG_2614

Now that this cute photo has distracted you for a little bit let’s talk about bleeding. Which, from my experience doesn’t get talked about. Ok I know I know blood is a slightly icky topic but still I would have felt a lot more normal and comfortable if I’d just known what was normal. Now obviously your advised to get these ginormous maternity pads for after the baby but you don’t really think much about it. The thing to keep in mind is that you haven’t had a period for 9months. So I bought just one of those packs of pads naively, I think I probably got through that in the first week. But yeah one pack wasn’t enough I think it was about 8 weeks in the end for me that I bled for, obviously wasn’t as heavy as the beginning for the whole thing but still was more than enough and went on for long enough. I didn’t think it would go on for this long and was worried after a few weeks but lucky enough I had a couple of other new mums who had had their babies around the same time as me and so just gently broached the subject and turned out one had only finished bleeding a week or so before and the other was still going so it is pretty normal. Obviously if your ever concerned or not sure about something do go to your doctor about it as they can just give you a check and make sure all is ok as it can sometimes, very rarely turn out that not all your placenta has come away and so this might need keeping and eye on or even sorting out. So yes anything usual or anything your not sure of just ask that’s what they are there for.

Right thats that out of the way. Feeding, now I know I said in my last post about breastfeeding and for us 6 weeks was a golden milestone, well by 12 weeks let just say a fair bit happened in those 6 weeks. For starters cluster feeding. Now I’d heard about cluster feeding ever so slightly from a friend who’s little one is nearly a year older than Hetty. So knew this did occur. And oh boy didn’t it occur. Hetty began cluster feeding and she was literally attached to me from about 6:30/7:00 in the evening till 11:30/12:00. This period was fun as it also didn’t lessen the amount of times she woke in the night either.

IMG_2662

This is how I spent a lot of evenings. I would toddle off into the bedroom with her. Read her a story and then she’d latch on and that’s where we’d stay for a while. She would drain both boobs. Now as you can imagine all this made me very very tired and it was around this point that I started doubting myself. So of course when this happened and when others heard of this they always give you suggestions. Now some are brilliant and really helpful and others maybe not quiet so much but again that comes down to what suits you and your little one. Now one suggestion we kept on getting but we weren’t sure how we felt (didn’t sit right with me at all, Doug wasn’t sure but more open to the idea) about it was that we should give her food. Give her some baby rice or something as that will help her feel fuller for longer and allow me to get some sleep. You get told a fair bit about babies and when to feed them and wean them etc so yeah. This one wasn’t one I was keen to try out or give in to. It just didn’t sit right the idea of giving her food at 12 weeks so I didn’t, I persevered. Cluster feeding pasted, it was something we just came to terms with and dealt with and it does pass. Like the old cliche ‘it’s just a phase’. Embrace it as much as you can if your going through it, know it does pass and just have a camera handy for the in between times and get shots like these haha

But for full disclosure though which some books don’t do (NS you know what i’m talking about). We did try to get her to take a bottle of expressed milk to try and help ease it if we could so Doug could do a feed in the evening to try and help. But like with some babies Hetty refused she would not take it, she wouldn’t take it from me, which apparently they often won’t take bottles from mum to begin with because they can smell your milk. She wouldn’t take it from Doug, and even got my mum to try and she still was having none of it, and as breastfeeding was working for us and I was no longer in any pain or anything, decided it wasn’t worth the hassle, stress or upset it was causing trying to get her to accept a bottle and gave up and continued with direct from the boob.

Next thing to start being thrown at you at this stage is the jabs. Now I had already asked if Doug would be so kind to come with us for that first set of jabs as I knew I would be emotional. (I was right I cried) So we had these booked in and we went along to the nurse. It is a horrible event really and in the words of hot fuzz and what you have to keep reminding yourself of it’s for ‘the greater good’. That first set we weren’t really sure what to expect what it would be of what and yeah just felt so guilty (I will touch upon that feeling in another post too 😉). We started off with Doug holding Hetty as I felt I couldn’t do it and then by the time it came to after the needles and for the drops I had her in my arms trying to get her calm. However, as I said I did have a little cry when she cried out when she had that needle popped in her leg, but all joking aside it is for the greater good, it’s to make sure they don’t get any nasty illnesses which could be really harmful even life threatening to them so you just have to remember this and get them done. ( Doug also being the amazing husband and dad he is, came to all the other jabs and will continue to as he gets to hold her through them 😉)

Another development happened during this time frame too….Hetty found her thumb 😍

Now I was very pleased about this. We’d had people suggest dummies to us earlier when going through the cluster feeding ‘as she was just using me for comfort and to settle, you should really use a dummy’ no no I shouldn’t and didn’t. My opinion personally is I’m not really a fan of dummies. I get the benefits that when they get to a certain age you can take it away etc and obviously can’t with a thumb but I personally just don’t like them. And again each to their own and honestly whatever you and little one are happy with that’s the right decision there isn’t a wrong one. I was a thumb sucker though and well I self stopped when I felt the time was right and I think that’s the same nature with most thumb suckers. So I was extremely pleased when Hetty showed signs she would be a thumb sucker as it meant she would be able to self soothe and comfort and I mean come on as these photos and ones later on will show it’s extremely cute! It had been a god send when it has come to self settling.

Advertisements

First 6 weeks; in this post I’ll be covering all the things which effect that first 6 weeks. Breastfeeding, healing, sleep…..

This seems to be a golden milestone for women to reach. I’d advise this as your first goal to reach and honestly things do start to get better after this point. But lets cover those things first.

So we had to wait the whole day to get discharged from the hospital and we were itching to leave we’d been in there too long already. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Back to that first day. We spent it in the hospital and we were very much kind of left to our own devices knowing help was on hand if we needed it.

As I said unfortunately due to blood loss I was now suffering with low blood pressure because obviously they had been treating me for high blood pressure. So I was feeling rather shaky and delicate but have a whole new little person to look after so I was very conscious of this. Now for me during pregnancy we had spoken about breastfeeding a lot and it was just something which I was hoping to be able to do and Doug was pushing for a lot! He’s seen how important it is for calves to get colostrum and so he was adamant I was breastfeeding. (During pregnancy I was compared to a cows pregnancy a lot! We have the same gestation and there are other similarities but yeah you can imagine how this was. Good job I’ve got a fairly good sense of humor. Especially when Doug would continue to ask whether I would allow him to milk me in the parlor; this was met with a no and I can confirm I never let him)  We had be transferred to the ward and given toast, they love giving you toast but it was like the tastiest toast ever so that was well received by both myself and Doug. We decided for the first time of trying to get Hetty to latch we would ask for assistants with this so Doug went and asked the midwife if she would come and help as I was still rather wobbly on my feet. A few moments later she came back and asked about how we would like to go about it and I wasn’t really sure and she suggested as I was a bit wobbly we tried the lying down technique. We were very fortunate she latched and away we went. This helped me probably feel a bit over confident in a way.

We were finally discharged from the hospital on the afternoon and home we went. I was feeding on demand and muddling my way through and unfortunately had a few wrong latches and ended up with two bruised nipples. The services out there are fantastic and literally don’t worry about what others think and do just do what suites you. So with this in mind, I’d got to the stage where it was really painful to feed and I had lots (and I mean lots!!) of milk so when one of the women rang from the local breastfeeding support group and I had a little cry on the phone someone was out to see me. That’s when I had it confirmed nipples were just bruised nothing major so to speak and unfortunately only thing to do is power through, so with a little help from Doug at times. (On the one nipple it was particularly painful so he just sat next to me and supported my shoulder as I had a habit of pulling back when she latched on and this just helped me stop doing it and causing more harm.) So with powering through within a few days we started to get a bit of a technique down and then by the golden 6 week mark it was a doddle. I mean don’t get me wrong there was still times when I had frustration with her with incorrect latch and having to pop her off and back on and also although lovely at times and also hilarious when she would come off just as let down happened and so milk sprayed everywhere (everywhere!), and all it was for was for her to give me a little smile. But it was so much easier after this point, it is like they say you’re both learning something new and with learning anything sometimes it just takes a little bit of time. But once past that first bit to be honest I found it fairly straight forward.

Now another fairly big part for me after having Hetty was things being a bit delicate, uncomfortable and painful. As I mentioned in my birth post I had an episiotomy and therefore stitches. Now where I was cut wasn’t where I thought it would be, it was more along the side like towards my leg rather than where you think it would be. It was so uncomfortable for those first few weeks, I couldn’t sit for long periods of time, couldn’t stand for too long and sometimes it just ached and stung like a bitch! Obviously the midwife checked everything was healing ok on her couple of visits and when I mentioned that I was still really uncomfortable she gave it a check, took a swab and asked how I was caring for it. I explained I’d been advised at the hospital bath with salt, and she said that the amount of salt I’d have to add to a bath for it to actually benefit would be about two bottles of salt at a time. She suggested I used lavender oil and would only need 3-5 drops in a warm bath. I have to say I was very lucky that again Doug was rather sympathetic about this and very often when I said I need to get in the bath to help and hopefully sooth, he would either start running it or just let me get into action and would watch Hetty for that period of time so I could hop in even if it was just for a couple of minutes to help. And as this is the first 6 week post you can guess what I’m going to say next within 6 weeks it was all fully healed. Now when I say fully healed I’m not going to broach the sex topic yet so….yeah……….

Now sleep is obviously a big topic which gets spoken about in many platforms. Everyone knows this is one element which to begin with there isn’t a routine too. Anyone who is expecting one, take the pressure off yourself and little one. Go with the flow. That being said whatever anyone finds that works for them and little one good for you, stick with it and be happy with your decisions. For me I had decided I would go with the flow of baby. I was feeding on demand, so whenever she woke I would offer her and if she went back to sleep she did and so forth. Unfortunately Hetty didn’t really like the moses basket,

A7E7CC24-D84F-417F-90D1-A127DE33DFDA

we had that time old issue of as soon as you lowered her that was it she knew it was different and would wake back up. So after about two days/nights of trying this, Doug built us a shelf.

86E46804-0A96-492F-8D84-6FCBF327066D4603F425-C7FA-4A2F-A441-B75FFAB53295

Bit of backstory and explanation. Our bed is high, and I mean high it’s about level with the top of my leg, so we weren’t sure whether we were going to be able to use one of those next to me cots. Therefore we didn’t want to fork out a fair amount of money to not be able to use one, and also we weren’t sure whether this would suit Hetty or not and whether she’s accept it or whether it would be another moses basket situation. Hence, Doug built her a shelf much to the intrigue and caution of our health visitor. She didn’t quiet know what to make of it and was all about oh well your not sure what the toxins are etc etc Now obviously it was fair enough for her to voice her concerns and stuff, but we didn’t use any materials or anything unsafe. And it was working for Hetty and myself, meant I could be right next to her, roll over to feed her and roll away without waking her meaning that we were able to get the odd hour here or there of sleep. So we kept it and continued to use it until Hetty got too big for it. When she got close to growing out of it we managed to buy off a friend the Chicco Next to me and we managed to screw that onto the side of the bed and we used this until again she got to big and we moved her into a cot in her own room. I would like to say that 6 week is a golden mark with sleeping and for some it may be but for me it was not so this is a topic I’m sure will come up time and time again. But at this point I hadn’t quiet got to the point where I collapsed on the floor crying (that happened a little later)

As you can see Hetty was very happy in her next to me.

Hetty was born exactly 2 weeks before Christmas. In my mind this was a lovely time of year. I bloody love christmas! So we were able to go and buy the tree a couple of weeks before and have that up, I’d already got all the presents sorted and wrapped. However in saying this obviously there are certain activities which go along with Christmas. A couple of members of Doug’s family were going on their honeymoon over christmas so they wanted to organise a Christmas meal the week before so they could celebrate then. So this involved going up to Doug’s grans when Hetty was just a week old. Now on one side this was nice to do as we saw a lot of family, had amazing food but on the other side we probably could have done without it. As I said before with a new born your both just learning and getting used to things. And as I said my bits were uncomfortable! And I mean uncomfortable at this stage, there was part of the day I was really struggling. Doug was as helpful as he could be but as soon as we got home I literally jumped straight in the bath to try and help calm and sooth it. The guess what we did the following the next week on Christmas Day, this one was better though as there was less people there, things had had an extra week of healing so was slightly more comfortable. In hindsight I think that first week was too early for the both of us and we should have been a bit stronger and said sorry but we weren’t going to be able to go but it was nice seeing family. But yes I don’t plan on having anything planned in those first couple of weeks next time. But Christmas was lovely and I just love Christmas.

 

I always class this photo as being her first smile which she gave me bright and early on Boxing Day morning.

A side note as well didn’t want to do too much tmi but post natal bleeding, this is usually the golden mark as well for this finishing. 6 weeks mark that gem to get too.

Giving Birth, my birth story in full….its long and detailed be warned haha

At 36/37 weeks I got signed off with my wishful thinking birth plan. Where I live we hadn’t long had a wonderful facility up and running. A new birthing suite run by midwives with birthing pools and loving calming lights and just looked absolutely wonderful. As I was low risk and hadn’t had any issues at all I had it signed off that I would be able to go here to have our baby. Well 40 weeks check up pissed all over that.

Doug and I had gone to see the midwife together for hopefully my last appointment as i was finding it a bit uncomfortable behind the wheel now and well it’s nice having your other half there and Doug was very good to come to appointments where he could. Well we went in and she started her usual checks and then blood pressure check and as soon as she went to perform it a second time I knew that was it my luck had run out. She did two readings and by this point I already knew the issue was that it was reading high. She said it was slightly high and that she was going to ring the hospital and see what they wanted to do. She rang they chatted for a few moments and it was decided that we should go up there this evening and just get checked over. Said there was no point getting there before 5 so to go home for a bit make sure everything was in hand and then head up there.

We went up to the hospital for around then; hospital bag ready in the boot just in case (as your advised from 37 weeks, ours wasn’t in from then though we just got it when we’d gone home). Then the wait began, we were waiting in a tiny room for about an hour and then got transferred to another small room. A woman came in, asked a few questions took by blood pressure again, disappeared again for a little bit and then came back again. Also on another side note you never have to wee into so many pots as you do when you’re pregnant. So I had to do that again when I got there, even though I’d just had it checked at the midwife appointment only a few hours earlier.

Then that was it, it was decided I wasn’t going anywhere and I was being admitted and induced. But before I even got transferred to the ward they decided that they would perform a sweep, lovely. So my ideal birth plan had been kicked out the window and now I was going to have a sweep performed. To say the least about no longer being able to go to the midwife lead birthing suite, I was completely gutted! I was transferred, given my bed and that was it until show time. I was strapped up to a blood pressure monitor and belly hooked up to heart rate monitor. Doug was allowed to stay with me until 10 and then he was told he had to go home and that was it. Now another thing that will become apparent about my birth experience is that everything happened to me at night.

IMG_2197

 

As you can tell from this pic, very unimpressed haha

So Doug had left and I was in the ward for the night. So first thing that happened they decided they were going to start the inducing process. As I said things happened to me at night so at 12:15am lovely midwife came through and inserted the cardboard like thing that was suppose to get the ball rolling. The hours unless something was happening for your partners to be there was 10:00am – 10:00pm so Doug returned after doing work on the farm the following morning. Well not much was happening in the morning, was all rather boring but then by the afternoon contractions had started. These weren’t too bad in all honesty just a bit of tightening and so forth. Mum and Dad came in visited and we all went for a coffee at the Costa at the hospital and chatted for a while. The contractions got closer together and more intense as time went on but I wasn’t checked till this had been for a long time and until they were a certain amount of time apart and unfortunately no where near yet. Doug again had to head home at 10 and they told him they would call if it looked like anything would make an appearance. Contractions continued and still nothing. I fell asleep…..when I woke in the morning contractions had stopped and that was that….They checked everything over again and I was told I was dilated enough for them to be able to break my waters and so it was just the wait to be transferred to delivery suite as they would do this there and start the drip for the rest of the induction. Now I got told this in the morning, before lunch that I just had to wait for a bed to be available and I’d get transferred through. Now as you can imagine I got mixed emotions about this because obviously you know that means going to meet baby soon, and be out of this hospital and no longer pregnant and stuff  but also obviously its a little bit nerve wracking and well you know you’re being told you’re about to have your baby. However, try waiting nearly 24 for this. So as I said I was told in the morning all was fine and ready and just a case of a bed….well I didn’t get transferred till about 12:30am and then once they got everything sorted and broke my waters and started the drip it didn’t all get started till about 3:15am! !

Lets talk about the drip. The horrible needle popped in your hand which twinges every time you move or get it stuck on something, that was fun but luckily I had a lovely midwife who came an popped this in and was really efficient. But that bastard drip! It gets increased every half hour until your at a certain point which was fine. With me though I reached that point before all the interval increases. So contractions where happening when they should for as long as they should but I hadn’t had one of the suggested increases. My midwife at this point was newly qualified and she felt we could probably leave it at this level for a bit see how it went and then possibly increase again later on, but because she was newly qualified and stuff she just wanted to check with the ward matron and get approval. However she came back a little later on and after talks they decided to go with the normal planned increased. This tipped me and my body over the edge. I was having contractions less than a minute apart and baby wasn’t getting a rest either and so they were then worried about babies heart beat. So they wanted to take bloods from the top of her head to check that she was ok. So this was done, not the nicest of process for either of us I’m guessing and that was all fine and so we continued. At this point I found gas and air and lost a bit of time so not sure how long that went on for. Again contractions where still a minute to less than a minute apart getting worried about babies heart rate again and so took more bloods. It was at this point that every one was telling me to have an epidural. Now prior to having all this happen and being in labor the one thing I was adamant about was that I did not want an epidural, the whole idea of it just freaked me out. But yes I went again against my prior judgement and also when Doug was telling me to just have one as well I did.

Two lovely gentleman came in to administer and that was that, everything went a little bit calmer for a bit and then I was told it was time to push. So when the midwife instructed I pushed and oh my god they expect you push for a ridiculous length of time. Anyway they allowed me to push for about 10 minutes and then they were getting concerned about baby’s heart rate again. The other thing you should know at this point was that you could clearly she her head. Next thing I knew there was another 4 people in the room and I was being given another decisions, they wanted to take more bloods from her head again to check whether she was getting enough oxygen, and then they were like but we’re also concerned so could either rush through for emergency c-section or can do an instrumental. Did I mention you could see her head! therefore I was like how the hell you going to do a c-section surely she’s gone to far already. By this point as well I felt like baby had had enough needles in her head and so I didn’t want her to have to go through this again so I just said lets go with instrumental, with no clue really what I was agreeing too.

Turns out I was agreeing to have forceps. I tried to ask the main doc what this entailed and I was given a look and spoken to like I was an utter moron. Well how the fuck was I supposed to know in the antenatal classes we’d gone to they didn’t really cover this as obviously they talk about all the details of having a natural birth and the process your body goes through etc etc and they just mentioned about instrumental in a sweeping statement rather than full detail. The amazing student midwife who was in with us could kind of see that I was clueless and that doctor was a prick and so she kindly explained what would happen and made things clearer.

So again another 4 people came sweeping into the room and that was that. Lady who was assisting it all she cut me (Doug likens this to a gore scene out of a horror film, because of the amount of blood), inserted the forceps and with two pushes and pulls out came baby Henrietta. They took her over to one side gave her a check over, all was fine, kind of wrapped her and popped her on me. Now as you can imagine I was a little out of it an over whelmed and didn’t really know what to do or expect.

IMG_0025

One reaction I did have thought was I was really hungry and craving sugar. Remember I said I’d got transferred middle of the night and ball got really rolling early hours of the morning well it was now 6:30 in the evening, I hadn’t eaten anything all day and barely drank anything either. As a result of being cut they were now working on the next part, stitching me back up! Also I was really lucky not only did I have the cut from where they cut me but I also tore just inside by this cut also, therefore I was getting stitched on top of stitches. Unfortunately as well by this point my epidural had began to ware off so I started to feel things. Luckily she was really quick and was all done in not time.

IMG_0027.JPG

As I said I was really hungry so Doug had nipped off to get me something to eat and drink while they were doing the main bulk of this stitching but unfortunately this is when they took Hetty to one side also to take her measurements clean her up a bit more and weigh her so regrettably we missed out on being able to take any photos of this.

But that’s ok we got some cute lovely photos and we get to take more and more photos and videos while she grows. Following pics are shortly after and one from during the night once we had moved back to the ward.

another thing to add is that Doug was made to go home that night which I think is really harsh. I was suffering a bit as because they were treating me for high blood pressure after I’d been transferred I had lots a fair amount of blood during the birth that my blood pressure dropped really low so I was having the effects of this. Dizzy, feeling very weak and obviously I’d just had a baby first time mum and all but yep at around half 12/1 they sent him home. He came back straight away in the morning but harsh just harsh.

 

IMG_2200

 

IMG_2204

 

Pregnancy

So, let’s start at the beginning. Doug and myself decided that I would come off birth control on the 1st January 15. Therefore this began the not trying/trying. We figured we’d go with the flow of things and see how we went. What that meant in my head was let’s see how quick we can make it happen.

I’d been on the pill for 15 years by the time we decided I would come off it. This made me rather anxious about the whole whether I’d even be able to get pregnant thoughts in my head. As I had heard it can take quiet a while for you body to return back to cycling after being on the pill for a period of time, let alone over a decade. Any way long story short, we were at it like rabbits when I thought would be the most fertile window and then we would just wait to see what would arrive or not. Doug had no clue of cause during these periods of time he just figured I’d got a bit more mojo with coming off the pill and all his Christmases and Birthdays had come at once.

Doug went on a stag due in early April and Aunt Flow was due her visit at that same time. When she hadn’t arrived I thought hey why not I’m excited and can always buy more sticks to pee on so I toddled off to the bathroom while he was nursing his sore head and just wanting to sleep on the sofa. (I have no sympathy when it comes to hangovers as they are self inflicted so he was getting nothing but it’s your own fault from me). While he was passed out on the sofa I waited to see if anything would change on that stick and well it did😳 I was so excited and so went back into the living room stick in hand ready to break the news to Doug.

Well if I was hoping for one of those TV/movie scenes when they tell their other half their pregnant and the whole hugging kissing and jumping around quiet the opposite I got. I tapped his leg holding the stick up and trying to get him to rouse and well he mumbled do you want a kiss and then fell back to sleep. So as you can imagine not what I was quiet hoping for but he was rough and probably picked the wrong time to do it. Therefore I knew from the day my period was due I was pregnant so very early on. Also just to be sure I took a test the next morning as well as I’d always heard your morning pee is the best one to test with.

IMG_1681

We had a chat and decided we wouldn’t tell anyone as it was way to early and you always here it’s best not to say anything until after the first scan just in case. Well I’m not always very good at this and so I told my mum and dad. Truth is I’m very close with my mum and dad and I pretty much tell them everything. To be honest as well I think if the worst had happened I would have wanted them to know so I would have had them there to support me. But this is just an assumption as I was very fortunate to have a very smooth straight forward pregnancy. (Edit: ok I told my best friend too, I tell my best friend literally everything as you should so hence why I didn’t think this needing mentioning as I figured we all know we tell our best friend everything but for her she was the only person this was shared with (outside of my parents) And everything will always be shared with her…always x)

IMG_1794

I didn’t suffer from any sickness as such just a lot, I mean a lot of dry heaving. Smells would set me off, imagines and even conversations. I wasn’t actually ever sick, just heaved. I had some of the usual issues swollen hands and feet towards the end and these little blighters literally showed up over night when I was about 38 weeks.

IMG_2177

But it’s ok they pretty much disappeared afterwards and the silvery lines which are left now are just a reminder I grew a little person, my body did an amazing incredible thing which we should be kinder to each other about.

below will be some other pics of my growing bump which is a pregnancy bump, not fat, not bloated,just baby. I was fortunate to go full term. I got to 40 weeks and no baby, I’d had what I thought to be a bit of a show on that Monday (40weeks on the Tuesday) and then I had my 40 weeks appointment and well that changed everything…..

IMG_2123

IMG_2159