A Life Changing Decision

I found out late last night that OH is off to the Dr this morning to book in for ‘the snip’.

I actually sobbed this morning with the realisation I will never be pregnant again, never experience those beautiful movements from within, never experience birth again, never hold my own tiny baby again.

Don’t get me wrong I knew he wanted to do it, and I agree with it to a certain extent. I feel at 43 (very nearly 44, but still hanging on) alone we have rolled the dice twice and risked so many age related ‘complications’ that maybe a third time we wouldn’t be quite so ‘lucky’. Then there’s the actual getting pregnant bit, coupled with the very real risk of yet another miscarriage meaning we could be heading into late-40s territory if we did do it again and I already feel I’m too old for the two I have. I don’t want to leave my children parentless at a young age and being the age we are this is more likely than their peers.

Yet still I sob. 

When I finally decided that I did want children, I wanted three children. I’m one of three and probably this is why I wanted this amount. In recent times I’ve found myself ‘knowing’ that had I started earlier I may well have ended up with even 4 or 5.

However, I didn’t and this is where we find ourselves, yet still I mourn.

Many years ago my SIL had to have a hysterectomy, she was in her mid to late 40s. My brother and she had, years previously, already decided they weren’t having children but she struggled. I remember (in my unknowing youth) wondering why she was so upset when she didn’t want children anyway, but my mum told me that it was their choice not to have children but now her body has taken that choice away and decided for her and that’s where she struggled.

I now know how she feels.

I know that we’re not going to have more but once this procedure is done it’s final.

There’s no going back.

The decision is out of my hands.

I find myself realising that I like to live with a glimmer of hope. Something to hold onto even when you know that it’s not going to happen.

When my mum was in her final weeks and days I clung on to a belief she was sooooo sick because of an infection, not the cancer that had rampaged through her poor body. It got me through and I find myself now realising this is how I deal with everything in life.

It’s funny, when we were trying for Peanut, and actually even when we were trying for DS, I kept saying that if it happens it happens and if it doesn’t then that’s that and I was okay with that. I would have no regrets for not atleast giving it a go even though fate chose a different path for us. 

I find myself there again, wanting to leave it in the hands of the gods, but this way I know, absolutely know, that I will never birth another child again, and with this I struggle.

6-8 Week Reviews

Last week our baby girl turned 6 weeks. 6 weeks!!! Where on earth did that time go.

This meant it brought about her 6-8 week reviews with both our GP and the HV. 

She saw our GP on Monday 22nd May at 3pm. Luckily OH was actually at home so I didn’t have to take both children with me and could just concentrate on Peanut which was ideal.

This check with the GP is to check for any physical developmental issues regarding Peanut. As you can see from the below photo there are no concerns and she’s scored a ‘Satisfactory’ for all points excluding hearing which of course was done at her Newborn review.


He also had a quick check with me. Asked about my mood, my ‘healing’ and any concerns I may have of which I mentioned the tenderness of my stomach. Did I mention this in previous posts? I think I did. During pregnancy I had a tenderness on my stomach, it was sore to the touch in a particular spot on my abdomen which hadn’t gone away yet and I was concerned I may have split my stomach muscles, a condition known as Diastasis Recti. I have noticed I have a ‘peak’ there and can’t explain how tender it is. Anyway he had a poke around and doesn’t seem to think there’s a problem so to go back in a month or so if it’s the same. 

Of course I forgot to mention the numbness in my hands, I’ve got so used to it now I don’t think about it so now I’ll have to go back again, a right royal pain in the rectum with two children in tow.

So all in all this appointment went like clockwork. No concerns for anyone.

The Health Visitor review was on Friday 26th May at our local Children’s Centre at 9.30am. The timing was perfect as DS was at school so again to focus purely on Peanut.

This visit took about 45 minutes. We discussed Peanut’s development and my own mental health. She also measured and weighed Peanut and I discovered that they do not measure at birth anymore (so my not finding her length wasn’t to do with me developing sudden blindness) as the stretching out of their legs could further aggravate any undiagnosed hip problems… who knew?!

We also discussed things that’ll happen between now and her next review at a year old. Such as weaning, safety when becoming mobile (the usual stairgates, hot liquids, hair straighteners, nappy sacks, rolling off high surfaces; sofas, changing tables and beds), sleep safety and any concerns I may have.

Anyway, developmentally and physically she is doing well.

Peanut:

  • Smiling – Yes
  • Making Eye Contact – Yes
  • Following Movements – Yes
  • Vocalising – Yes
  • Strong Limb Movements – Yes
  • Hands Gripping – Yes
  • Any Hearing Concerns – No
  • Weight – 4.80kg 10Ib 9oz (a nearly 2Ib gain in 3 weeks!) 50th centile 
  • Length – 54.5cm, 50th centile 
  • Head Circumference – 38.3cm, 75th centile 


Me:

No concerns, no low mood, no changes in personal circumstances, no domestic abuse (though I did joke that I was close to it due to usual ignorance 😂).

So there we have it no follow up until she’s a year old but to go to weigh in clinic once a month.

Does this mean she’s now no longer considered a newborn? When does that title change to baby? Hmmm, something to ponder once again 

Manchester

Great Britain woke up to the most dreadful of news this morning. I read it at 3am when woken by Peanut demanding her latest feed.

I’m speechless about this latest, in a longline, of atrocities carried out in the name of one god or another but what makes this one particularly atrocious is that this one targeted an event which was predominantly filled with children.

Children.

Innocent children.

So with that in mind and that over the next few days more children will be named as the victims of this hateful crime I hug my two even tighter tonight, I hold them longer, I kiss them harder and love them deeper.

My heart, prayers and thoughts go to those victims, and their poor heartbroken families of the Manchester Arena bombing and weep for them.

Rest in Peace 

Birth Story (Day 0)

We have now welcomed our amazing, beautiful little girl into the world and here is how it happened…

I suppose I should start where my last post left off, where the induction is concerned…

Thanks to the lateness of the appointment we managed to get DS nicely settled before we had to go. G came round at 1900 to watch him and off we went.

We arrived at hospital at 2030 and waited in maternity triage. About 2130 we got called through onto triage and met Kirsty the MW who would be looking after me at this stage of the induction process. 

She explained that I’d have to be monitored for half an hour then have a VE, a scan to check Baby was head down and then I’d have a pessary inserted to soften cervix and that this would be in for 24 hours before being taken to labour ward and put on the hormone drip, Syntocinon if nothing happened beforehand!!!

24 hours?

We don’t have childcare for more than tonight and tomorrow!!!

Cue panic and begging to just go straight on drop. She said that unless I was ‘favourable‘ then I would have to have the pessary.

The next hour I spent pleading silently with my cervix that it would be favourable.

Thankfully I was, it was. I was 6cm dilated so given the news that I’d go straight down to labour ward and onto the hormone drip as soon as they were ready for me which should be an hour or so so we tried to grab an hour’s shut eye, it was gone midnight by this point.

A lovely MW called Georgie came and fetched us about 0130 and immediately we got on. Her little boy Charlie was born 5 days after DS so we instantly had plenty to talk about.

We were settled into birthing room  number 5 and brought teas and coffees to keep us going, we were both pretty exhausted by this point.

At about 0230 a doctor came to fit a cannula and the drip was fitted and activated by about 0300 and Georgie assured me baby would be here by 6!!

This wasn’t the case.

Despite having regular and strong (according to the machines) contractions everyone was amazed that I just couldn’t feel anything. All I can explain it as was a tightening of my outer stomach muscles like you get with a TENS machine, nothing deep within.

I went from 2ml/hour to 4, to 8, to 12 then back down to 8 to prevent too many.

At this point Georgie mentioned that she thought she had felt what could have been an ear when she examined me meaning that Peanut’s head could be slightly turned meaning it wasn’t properly engaged and pushing onto my cervix thus causing this stalled progress.

If this continued then I was aware that there was a very real possibility of me having to have a c-sec.

I continued to bounce on the birthing ball, walk around the room and when OH discovered a wireless speaker behind the curtain we put on some music so I started to dance quite vigorously to desperately try and shift baby’s head.

At approximately 0750 as Heorgie neared the end of her shift she told me she was going to crank up the hormone and upped it to 16 then her replacement, Lynne, turned up and she handed over to her.

We were so lucky with midwives as Lynne, too was a great laugh and we managed to have a bit of a chat about my birth plan and what my preferences were.

At 0840 the first proper contraction hit and boy it was a doozy. I literally went from 0-1000 in one contraction. Lynne asked what position I’d like to be in and I replied not on my back between pelvis cracking contraction pains. At this point she got me on the bed where I climbed up and onto my knees grabbing the handrails on the ‘back’ of the bed.

I heard her tell me to push when I felt the urge which I was amazed about as thought I can’t have dilated that quickly but within a contraction I heard her opening the delivery pack and I was pushing.

Within half an hour, at 0913 I birthed Peanut’s head and two minutes later, at 0915 I gave birth.

It took a few seconds for her to cry which felt like a lifetime then a sobbing OH told me it was a girl!!!

That moment will be etched on my brain forever. 

A girl. 

Our family is complete. 

No pain relief but yogic breathing and a natural (barring the hormone induction) birth with no intervention. I felt every single centimetre of her descent, of her crowning and of her being born, a sensation I didn’t have with DS due to having put myself in some zen like state for the labouring hours and having been deadened ‘down there’ due to an episiotomy. Although I never got to have the water birth I would have so liked I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome, all considered.

Although having another boy would have been absolutely fine with me I think I possibly would have felt the need to try for another and with our advancing years and the time it takes us to conceive and with the risks of more miscarriages and complications due to my age I think the risks of doing so far outweigh the benefits. We’ve successfully rolled the dice twice now with a perfect outcome each time, and even though in an ideal world I would have loved three children, it’s time I stopped tempting fate and now we have one of each I don’t feel a need to risk it. 

1 Month Old 

Yesterday our beautiful little girl turned a month old. Such a small amount of time but already I’m cursing time for going too quickly and can’t remember, nor imagine, life without her in it.

The last four weeks have been a whirlwind romance, from the moment I set eyes on her, before I set eyes on her, I was besotted and have fallen deeper and deeper in love with her.

I worried I wouldn’t have enough love to accommodate her aswell as her amazing older brother but I needn’t have worried. It’s true, your heart is like a tardis!

I worried that I would have to ‘borrow’ love from DS to give to Peanut and that my love for him would lessen, as it turns out watching how he dotes on his ‘baby sisty’ has made me love him even more, if that was at all possible.

We are currently settling in to not only life as a family of four, but also into a new family home now that we have finally left our stinky one bed flat. 

Peanut:

Weight: At last week’s weigh in clinic Peanut weighed 8Ib 11oz

After initial concerns about her weight gain we have no worries anymore, she is nicely following the 50th centile.

She has been plagued by a blocked nose pretty much since birth so saline nasal spray is a constant companion

Sleep: Now this is pretty good. DS used to sleep and eat, eat and sleep, ad nauseum pretty much in two hourly cycles. Peanut, on the other hand, since birth has had large amounts of wakeful time which I thought unheard of for a newborn, but also long stints of sleep, especially at night which is a result. The only problem being she can take up to two hours to resettle, whereas DS took half hour to feed and go back to sleep, it occurs to me that you can never win.

Feeding: After an initial wobble where she didn’t patch very well, didn’t seem interested and fed for a small amount of time she’s now come into her own. Her latch is excellent and she comes away when she’s done which DS never did. She clusters late afternoon which is far better for my sanity than late evening. All is well (fingers crossed) with our bfing journey.

Poos: We’ve just had a spate of no poos which isn’t concerning, especially for EBF babies. 4 days she went without going, if you get my drift and since she started going again it is a perfect Dijon mustard consistency and to the point of properly filling the nappy now. It’s lost that newborn flecked appearance.

Me:

Lochia: I am now at the pinky turning yellow part of this delightful stage of post partum recovery.

If you were wondering what the stages were…


Weight: I bit the bullet and went to Slimming World last week and I’m officially back at my starting weight again + 4Ibs… depressing! I also couldn’t have chosen a worst week to attempt to start as moving house has meant 3 nights of takeaways, no lunches, junky breakfasts and lots of sweets, chocolates and biscuits. This week however I’m on it having eaten all the crap that was in the fridge.

Boobs: Are the size of boulders but behaving, no blocked ducts as of yet.

**Posted a week late due to lack of internet.**

The Big Move

This Sunday DD is 4 whole weeks old and today is the day we FINALLY say goodbye to our beachside one bed flat.

I’m sat here feeding, its 3.30am and I’m watching Gilmore Girls whilst surrounded by boxes and wondering why I’m not in the least bit excited.

I have kind of put myself in a place to protect myself where this move is concerned. Why? Because the house was supposed to be ready in February/March and since then the goal posts have been constantly moved and to protect myself from the stress I’ve just ‘accepted’ that we’re NOT moving and focused on getting Peanut here.

So this has been pretty much the situation until Monday when OH did a site tour and agreed to ‘accept’ some minor snags to not further delay completion (we are close to our mortgage extension and don’t want to exceed that). On Tuesday they rang and said Friday we complete… Friday, three days time, Friday. On Wednesday they said it would be next week as they couldn’t organise removals (of course not, they kind of need more notice than that), 2 hours later it was all on again, they had contacted a different removal company. A removal company who did its survey using our sales pictures from Roght Move… really? These pictures don’t show the void of doom where half our life has been boxed since our sale fell through last year, the pictures don’t show the two MASSIVE cupboards literally full to bursting, the pictures don’t show the shed outside that’s packed to the rafters and it also doesn’t show all the stuff I obviously hid for the photos. Needless to say the packers arrived yesterday TOTALLY unprepared for the mammoth task thinking this was a small one bedder. This meant a couple of the ‘characters’ were far from warm in their presence.

To say I was embarrassed is an understatement and a little cross that these people were making me embarrassed as I’m sure they have more than just a couple of cartons of stuff in their own homes.

Anyway, we’re here. Removal day. DS has got school this morning and I’m hoping that we’ll have the keys before we have to pick him up and get the bulk done but if not I’m going to leave OH to sort them out, punishment for being on the Isle of Man all week and leaving me to deal with everything up until today on my own with a newborn and toddler.

So, am I excited yet? Not one bit, just stressed to the hilt and worried about where we’re going to put everything at the other end.

I’ll up date you later.

Wish me luck.

Gah