Tag Archives: Society

A change of heart.

First of all, I’ll apologise for my lack of prescene online. With a growing baby  demand for my full attention at all times has become a first priority. Eleanor is now on the move, vocal and ahaving a spell of nap refusal. We have 5AM wake ups and 8PM bed times. I began a book way back in March and I don’t think I’m half way through as of yet, it’s terrible. Call it laziness, call it busy, exhaustion, whatever you like.

The point is, I have so little time to think right now, I don’t have the spare time to blog,when I do get that minute peace, I nap because frankly, it’s the only hope of a good kip. An active and demanding baby and an active family life has left myself with little free time to blog or even concentrate for that matter.

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I return to work in a few short weeks and my priorities right now are making the most of this time out in the sunshine, playing at the park and being with my baby. I’ll never get this time back, my blog can take a back seat. I think that’s fair? Anyway, as I mentioned, I’d keep you all in the know with any wedding plans and change, so here I am, posting about a change of dress as Eleanor has a feed.

I was set, good to go. A white dress, inexpensive, drop hem, little lace.. It was perfect..until it wasn’t. With the Wedding drawing close and free time running low, I was on a tight time scale and budget to find the dress for me. Sure, the white was lovely but I’ll stats that say for a Summer day. It wasn’t right to wed in, it’s just not enough of me, it was much too ‘safe’, and I’d hate to look back and think I wish I’d worn another dress. Scrolling online, I came across the perfect dress. It would have been wrong not to try it on for size. As the title of this blog implies, I had a change of heart. It was instant.

The Friday afternoon that it arrived, I was ecstatic. I didn’t expect it to fit so well or look as it did but its just right. I’m sorry option one, in the closet you go. This dress is to die for, a cowl neck, a slinky material that hugs all the right places made from my favourite material. Modest in length (longer than the first) and my favourite colour. Correct I’m not wearing white on my wedding away. The accessories I have match perfectly and I have a faux stole coming my way to finish my look off. I’m hoping for an old school, glamour look. A little modern take on a vintage bride. Birdcage veil included.

With mention of the birdcage veil, I’m still unsure of a hairstyle? I think a ballerina bun, scraped back from my face and held high. Classic and simple yet practical with a small baby who tugs at my hair and face non stop. Right now. I’m unsure wether to incorporate a braid for some modernism or to just let my hair hang loose in beach style waves with the veil draped down my face? I have some time to play around and an appointment with the hairdresser on the day on my wedding to get my favoured style put in place.

I have collected some little accessories here and there. Vintage Bobby pins, a blue brooch to fit the something blue trend, a garter hand made from Etsy by the most lovely lady and some small rhinestones which I’m not quite sure what to do with yet! I’ll find a use though, my Mum said you can’t have too much sparkle on your wedding day and I’m going with that. Although she returned her dress as she claimed it was too much sparkle for a day time..

Euan and I have a photographer booked tnow too, something we weren’t originally going to opt for but with only having one wedding day in your life time to gtt it right and have it just as you would dream it, we decided to go with a local woman who took beautiful images of Eleanor back at the beginning of the year. It seemed only right to re book with Eni, and to remain an intimate ceremony and celebration. I’ll be grateful to look back on our Wedding photographs come years and cherish all of the memories, especially of Eleanor being with us.

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(I think she is feeling as excited as I am for the big day when Mummy and Daddy get married, don’t you?)

We are set to meet the coordinator at the hotel reception on June 3rd before I return to work and get all of our plans, table set up and decorations in place. I’ve got all the little bits and bobs that we will use to decorate the room, now just to hand over the supplies and get the menu’s down to a tee for the big day.

I’m real excited as time reals in on us. I can’t wait to have a lovely day with my love, my baby and our close family and friends. I’m so happy with how our plans and ideas are taking shape, my dress and whole look has come together on a whim and how small and intimate we have kept the day in general. Now just to wait for the day to come around and seal the deal. How did you spend your Wedding day? Has anyone had a fiasco with a Wedding dress last minute?

Keren x

Travel essentials with a baby.

Time is passing super fast right now, the weeks all merge into one. With our holiday to Cyprus just one short month away, I’ve began to list some of the essentials that I will be taking in the suitcase for Eleanor.

I’m a little anxious to travel with her as she is just so young but I’ve heard travelling with a baby, is easier than a child at times. Throw colic and a fussy baby into that mix, I’m not so sure. Yes, at six months we are still having spells of colic. Usually from 9pm through to 11pm. Better than previous but still it exists and taunts us. Any chance of movie nights or snuggles are pretty darn slim.

Anyway, as I have said,  this will be our first family holiday and trip with a baby in tow. I was due to fly out to Malaysia last April when pregnant but was advised against this by health professionals for risk of contracting the Zika virus. Safe to say that I took the advice given and stayed put at home while Euan went out to spend time with his Father.

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Of course I’m anxious about travelling with my baby and keeping her safe in an environment that is somewhat out of my control, but I am also so very excited to make some memories to remember and to ring in my partner, Euans 30th birthday. A special trip and a special occasion, one that I’m sure will stay with us for a long time. I’m all for making lasting memories and documenting each part of family life, the good, the bad and every moment in between.

It’s so important for me to be in a loving family environment and to be able to capture that in the moment and for looking back on with happiness. Becoming a Mother has really made me appreciate family and think more of others at all times than I do myself. I am trying to be better every day and grow to be kinder and more openly warming.

You could say I was used to having my own way, now I have to put Eleanor and Euan first and will always take care of them before I do myself. It’s a privilege to have my own family to care for in my own way and to grow with. Through the years I’m sure our bond will flourish and as a family we will be a strong and loving, support unit to each other. Building ourselves and our Daughter up and setting our sights on better.

This trip marks a milestone and also is a little wave goodbye to my maternity leave that is coming to an end. We are certain we want to make the most of this trip and have the best time together, time as a family will be tough to come by when I’m back to work, Eleanor is at day care each day is full on making family time hard to juggle.

I’ve been doing research online and sourcing information for travel with a baby. I’ve been reading what others advise, stories from parents and scrolling through lists designed for baby travel. From doing some light reading, I’ve come up with my own travel kit with baby which I will list below.

If you feel there is anything that I have missed that may be critical please add a comment. I need all the help and advice that I can get on this, as it is all very new to myself. I’m over organising for good reason, I want to be prepared fully for our trip and have everything and anything we could and will need. This will make for a smoother running holiday (or at least, I hope so) and more time to spend enjoying a break in the sun. Don’t worry, I’ve a good sun hat all ready to go and sun screen will be slathered on all through the day. With a baby, you can’t take no risks.

First up, I will share a travel guide for the journey. We have got a little back pack for our Eleanor to store the essentials she will need while making the journey. This will be so handy as al of her snacks, medication and change of clothes etc will be secure in one place and we won’t have to go digging around our own hand luggage to try grab what we need as we battle with little space.

Eleanor’s travel backpack:

– nappies, sudocrem, nappy sacks, hand sanitiser (for parents)

– water wipes

– medication required and calpol/teething powder and saline spray. A thermometer to monitor any change in temperature.

– comfort taggie blanket (very small) and teether

– muslin cloths and selection of bibs

– food pots, spoons, sip cup and food pouches. Varied snacks – I’m thinking rusks. Messy but effective.

– change of clothes

 

Now, for the suitcase I will list the added essentials which we will be bringing with us. Please remember, this list is just for Eleanor and I am new to this so I may have missed something out. Please share if you feel there is anything that will make the journey and trip a little easier.

– Mamas and Papa’s sun protection stroller with visor

– selection of clothing lightweight and durable, Pram shoes/sandals.

– beach towel and swim nappies

– bathing and wash supplies. Wash cloth and soap.Eleanor has sensitive skin so many wash supplies can bring her out in a rash or spots. I’ve just packed a simple multi use Johnston baby wash.

– toothbrush and paste

– pyjamas which are lightweight, sleep bag.

– various food supplies. Cutlery set.

– water sterilisation tablets for cleaning up etc.

– nappies and wipes, change mat, cotton wool. All the essentials for changing nappies..

– swim costume, swim all in one and a floating device for use in the pool.

– sun hat and sun screen suitable for babies SPF50+

** As I am breastfeeding I don’t require to take any formula or bottles, breast pump etc. Eleanor is EBF mostly and has around three meal times a day with snacking when necessary. Most of her nutrition is from her milk right now. I’ll be taking Muslin cloths a plenty and a breastfeeding scarf to remain covered up when feeds are necessary out in public.

The hotel is a family hotel and all supplies should be at hand if we feel we need anything extra or have missed something out. High chairs, cots etc are all provided and I’m sure we will be well looked after following the reviews.

I think that I’ve covered all bases and spent a small fortune at the same time. Travelling light with a baby is out of the question and I the best option for myself  is to be organised in this scenario. I’ll begin to pack next week and check before we depart that I have absolutely everything I need. Think I’ve missed something on the list? Let me know!

Keren x

 

 

 

Babies first..trip to A&E.

I noticed as I woke a little dried blood on the bed sheet, this had come from Eleanor’s ear which has also specks of blood dried up. Worried by this, I cleaned her up and kept my eye for any odd behaviour and warning signs of infections.

Eleanor has lately grown an obsession with tugging and piking at her ears, more noticeably when she is tired or having trouble with her teeth. I think she uses this as a comforting mechanism. I figured that in her sleep she must have caught herself and given a good scratch with her nails leaving a little damage behind. I wasn’t aware there was an ear infection brewing, and rapidly.

At lunch time, Euan came home for lunch as usual and was having his cuddle with Eleanor before heading back out when he passed comment that her ear was smelly and raw looking. Upon inspection, I began to panic that there was something serious under lying and that a minor irritation wasn’t just the issue. How I hadn’t noticed, I in the few hours from waking to lunch, I don’t know. Eleanor’s ear was raw red, pussy and definitely infected. There no mistaken the smell of an infection.

I called the doctor and got an appointment for the following afternoon and was advised to clear up her ear with sterile salt water regularly. Happy with this advice, I done so and I done so as best as I could. As best as I could with a wriggly six month old anyway. I was happy that this was going to settle this issue and ease of discomfort until the following day, however come 8PM after a wee trip out, her ear was progressively worse and smelling very angry, looking very unhappy.

Poor baby was having trouble, you could tell she wasn’t feeling right, irritable, crying for what seemed to reason and refusing food. We decided to take further action and call the late night doctor, got booked in and headed off soon after to the emergency department. Upon arrival, we were told to head to the fracture clinic..now,a young couple with a crying baby heading to the fracture clinic, passing a room full of waiting patients never looks good, does it?

I actually felt as though our every moved was being scrutinised by unaware individuals as we passed. Needless to say, I kept my head down. Low profile and all that. The wait wasn’t too long and Eleanor sat on our knees and had a wee play, good as gold really. You wouldn’t have thought it by the cries coming from her in the car but she surpassed expectations.

The doctor had a check of all her crucial stats and inspected her ears. Low and behold, an ear Infection.. Perhaps a burst ear drum but too hard to know with being unable to see far down the canal and Eleanor being so small. We were given a dose of amxocillin for a course of six days to clear up the infection and advised to see the Gp after this time for a check over to get the all clear. With this being her ears, I’d not like to risk lasting damage and will call first thing tomorrow to arrange for a check up. My poor baby.

It seems to be one thing after another for her right now and with being so tiny, so helpless, I really feel all of her pain only I wish I could take it away and have her as comfortable as possible at all times. Teething, colds, coughs, rashes with sensitive skin, ear aches…you name it. Man, I never thought a baby could suffer from so much in one spell. I was made aware that breastfeeding would help to eliminate colds/coughs etc and aid the immune system for both Mum and baby but this is not the case with us. We seem to pass back and forth colds and all sorts. I just wish for my baby to get a break!

It breaks my heart to see her so unhappy and unwell. It truly is the most horrible thing to see someone you love so deeply in pain and distress. Thigh she takes it like a trooper and still smiles throughout the tears, it just makes me so upset. I only wish for her a speedy recovery and hopefully some lasting relief, a break from all of the growing pains, the teething, the colds. You name it.

Motherhood really is more than just nursing a sleeping baby and changing nappies. Each day is so complex and different from the next, you dint know what is around the corner and babies moods can change in an instant. As Eleanor grows, I find there is so many complications that growth brings. The spurts, the sleep regression, teething, general unwellness, issues with sensitivity, all things that you do not really prepare for or fully expect when you bring home your newborn on those first days. It’s not all black and white as I am learning and Motherhood is challenging, it is testing and it is powerful.

I’ve never known a love like this and the want for a better life for this little lady. Here’s to a fast recovery, I’m off to sneak her some cuddles as she rests before hitting the hay myself. I’m sure I won’t sleep for worry and checking on her but I’ll give it a try. Tomorrow is a new day and with that I’m hopeful it can be a better day and I will see my baby happy once again.

What was your first experience with a trip to accident and emergency with your babe? Has anyone had trouble with ear infections in children?

Goodnight, Keren.

An insomniacs finest hour: The battle for sleep.

No, this title is not the next follow on to a Hollywood blockbuster, it’s my current fight each night, and I’m not on the winning team. Insomnia, it can and will, drive you insane.

I’ve been thinking as I lay awake about what to share with you bunch next. I want to expose myself to others and open up through my writing. I’m not good at public speaking or even chatting aloud to strangers and so I find it much easier to interact and socialise with others through the use of my writing and online sharing.

Let’s talk insomnia,shall we? I haven’t really ventured into sharing with you the lack of sleep that I face each night lately. It’s 11.19PM and once again, I can’t seem to get to sleep. To make use of the passing time, I thought I could post a short blog. My mind seems to be in over drive lately and I’m suffering with a spell of insomnia, deprived of any chance of a good nights sleep.

I can only describe this as gruelling, it’s horrible. I go to bed at 10 PM each night and I see every hour or there about. It’s not through choice, believe me, I try to sleep. My body fights to get to sleep but the more I fight, the more alert and awake I become.

I lay awake each night, tossing, turning, thinking. I think a little, I think a lot, sometimes I don’t even think, I just lay as still as can be in the hope that sleep comes. It never does and I’m lucky to catch a solid three hours. I get by during the day but my mind is elsewhere, a place that I don’t seem to recognise and a place I can’t quite comprehend or put into words.

I’m unsure wether the insomnia is due to the fact that  my anxiety seems to be at an all time high. I struggle very much lately with the increasing demands of a baby and keeping on top of the daily grind. From trying to complete one task to the next all while tending to a baby and ensuring that I spend enough time each day to interact and play with her can be challenging.

If I dare spend too much time on the house work or catching up with online reading for my own career, making the dinners etc, I fear that I’ve not given Eleanor as much of my attention as she deserves and the Mum guilt kicks in. It creeps up and I feel terrible if I notably leave her alone for any time period. I must add, just in case any of you wonder, I always leave her secure and safe, wether it be strapped into her baby bouncer or on her play mat away from anything that she may get her hands on and could cause harm and she is never left for over ten minutes without being checked on.

However, no matter how little or how long I leave her for some alone time, I feel bad. Eleanor is my baby and it should be my responsibility to be with her and teach her every step of the day. Or at least that’s what my mind tells me, being a Mother really is a full time job. Lot’s of love to all of you parents out there doing your best. I’m beginning to wonder who depends on who, it seems where Eleanor is fine to be left alone and rather happy to be so, I can’t seem to deal with being apart from her.. ONE ROOM APART. God damn that Mum guilt.

My mind is in over drive, I have a lot going on, with a holiday next month I seem to be planning and thinking about this a lot. It is always at a bed time that my mind begins to start springing out ideas and organising. It’s 11.33PM now and I’m thinking about holiday outfits, what to pack, what shoes I should bring, how much shoes I need to bring? (for one week). Can I bring Dr Martens to Cyrpus?

Surely such thoughts can be put on hold until the morning when I wake rather than torment me as I try to drift of and catch even just a solid hour. Give me a break. Heaven knows I need one right about now. This sleep issue can be harrowing and I often feel alone, me against the world as I lay awake in silence through the early hours.

I often wonder, is the insomnia part of the post partum finest? Hell, I’ve already got the whole Mum pouch, the hair loss, the breastfeeding sweats, the body aches and pains. I’m sure the insomnia is just another perk of Motherhood? Have any other Mum’s out there suffered with insomnia post baby?

I find that with the mix of anxiety, the whole rush of Motherhood and busy days.. busy weeks, months, can lead to my mind setting itself in over drive. A place quite tough to crawl back from.  I’m going crazy trying to stay on top of the whole balance of Family life. I am trying to plan a holiday, plan my Wedding day, stressing about my return to work after my leave, trying to spend as much time as I can with my family yet keep on top of all the daily activities and chores. I can’t do it all but I feel like I am expected to right now. My baby needs me and I don’t like to put her second. Ever.

Everyone wants more and more from me and I don’t have the ability to meet all of the demands I’m faced with daily and try to get some time for myself too. I mean, at least it feels like everyone wants, however, this is just what my mind feeds me. Nobody expects anything from me in reality and the only challenge that I face is dealing with the balance and fighting the fact that I am not Superwoman and I can’t do it all. At least not on my own.

Since having Eleanor, I don’t think I’ve had as much as six hours sleep, never mind alone time. I’ve been out with Euan on cinema trips away from Eleanor and Motherhood duties for no more than four hours at a time. I crave some alone time yet when I have it, it doesn’t feel right and I feel like I should be with my family rather than taking time out for a break. I chose to become a Mother after all, I don’t really have the audacity to request a break. Do I?

I must add, I am now six months post partum and I believe I feel and look worse than I did at two weeks after giving birth. Motherhood is not glamorous, I am tired, I live in the same over washed joggers and knitted jumper, I over heat, I break out in spells on acne, my hair is so thin it’s falling out all around me and my body has unexplained aches and pains every single day. My knees burn, my back hurts, my body doesn’t actually feel like it belongs to me. I don’t feel as though I am in my own skin, yet I seem to not remember myself in any other form.

As if I didn’t need more on my plate to content with, throw insomnia and a six month old teething into the mix and you have one twenty five year old ready for the grave. It’s tough, and it can be very testing. Some days all I want to do is lock myself away and take a nap, but then I remember that I am not fifteen anymore, I have a child and I hold a great deal of responsibility.

11.41PM, I have rapidly swapped the thought process from holiday packing to self esteem. See what I me, my mind races, it’s in over drive and at the worst as I try to sleep. My mind is now working to be little what self esteem I have left right now, I tell myself I am too skinny and have to gain weight as I’m stare at my frail legs and being knees. I wonder about my hair and hope that it won’t begin to fall out in clumps, I can’t take losing much more and now I feel sad that I cut my locks so short, I long for a full and shiny mane once more. The more tired I become, the more I notice myself to criticize and note my every flaw.

I just want sleep to come, it doesn’t and I know long after I stop with this post, I will still be laying here in silence. So here I find myself ask for advice for sleeping aids, have any of you had sleep issues that can recommend some products or routine to help?

I have tried hot showers and face masks, tried no caffeine past six, I would read or play music but it only stimulates my mind further and brings provoking thoughts.

I don’t do well with yoga but I have tried the whole yoga breathing, th counting of sheep classics  to help ease my mind before drifting off, only this can bring me to more thinking, my mind just wonders. There is little I can do with Eleanor in the bed so, I am working to get her into her own bed only teething seems to be a bit of a big issue right now and comfort feeding next to me is all that will settle her tears.

I’m afraid to take any sleep aids as with Eleanor next to me, I would be too concerned for her safety and never forgive myself if I fell Into a deep sleep and rolled onto her or any sort of freak accident were to occur. Are there any herbal remedies that can aid sleep? I am planning to try with the lavender and get some sleep scent spray for the room after doing some research.

Please feel free to add your comments, recommendations, requests. I’m happy to receive any tips and feedback. In fact, it is nice to hear from others from time to time, it’s not often that I venture out of my comfort zone and chat with strangers. A mixture of an introverted personality and what can be over bearing, I want to crawl under a rock type anxiety.

Better get back to trying to sleep and laying patiently awake, dwelling into the thoughts in my mind. Goodnight all, thanks for reading.

Keren.

 

 

Home is where the heart is. Valentine fantasies.

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Good afternoon guys! Okay, I admit that the title of this post may seem misleading, I best correct myself before setting you readers up for disappointment. This is no fifty shades of grey theme, you can keep your pants on. I am keeping things clean and talking about fantasies that as a family we hold for the future.

It is shrove Tuesday, pancake day as it is better known. A day to celebrate and eat my favourite food and just to mix things up, I recieved a Valentine bouquet from Euan a day early. With my favourite food day now combined with Valentins, I can only assume that this ought to be a good day.

I have woke on this day to some beautiful flowers delivered and a day is planned out with the main ladies in my life, my baby, my Mother and my sister. Galentines! With that in mind, I am feeling optimistic, high on love and plan to share with you bunch some recent topics of discussion in our household. Home is where the heart is.

Opportunities, higher wages, better quality of living, the great outdoors..we all strive and crave more. I mean, there has to be more to life than a 9-5 dead end job and British weather. Surely? There has to be a key to finding a happy work/life balance all while finding peace of mind too?

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We aim to find a place to reside that will bring us better prospects to raise a family and a place we can live minimally with access to a large variety of activities and opportunities. I would love to have three children one day, i grew up in a busy household and want to bring that chaos into a family of my own. A large family would mean a big move and many changes so that our children would have the best start that we can offer.

We hope to find a location with good education, health benefits and a healthy lifestyle, vitamin D on the occasion value for money and homes that we can only dream of. The grass isn’t always greener, no but in our circumstance,  we have nothing to lose in all honesty.

We dont seek much, nor do we have crazy expectations, we just crave a change that will bring something more, I don’t think it is wrong to want better and to do well and I think a fresh start would be welcome. I think we all want to start over from time to time. This time, we are willing to work to make that happen. No more pipe dreams.

During recent talks myself and Euan have decided that we wish to move away from home to raise our family. It’s been done many times by people in both better and worse circumstances and ther are plenty of success stories with regards to big moves with many folks saying once leaving home and finding settlement elsewhere, they have never looked back.

A move of any accord with a family is no small task, the way we see it, go big or go home. We have much research to do in regards to finding the right place for us to settle and see our children through school but with the information that is out there and the help available online, I’m certain we can come to an informed decision with location and area planning.

Once we are set with a base, we can then further explore our options and expenses. We can get estimates for the money we require to save and work our butt’s off to make life happen. I certainly feel it is time for big changes and a new climate. There is so much to life and this world away from this City.

As a family, we want and encourage new adventure, we want to live our best life together. I am sure all this planning and saving will be no easy task and bring plenty stress but together with the hopes of a better future in mind for ourselves and our family, we can achieve anything we wish.

Persevering and patience is key so it is a good job that I have left Euan at hand to do all the dirty work and the researching. I don’t cope so well with being patient, I only end up frustrated and upset. We don’t have time for that with all the planning and prep that must be done. I’ll simply take a back seat and advise on this occasion, the easy ride. No pun intended.

The Valentines hype has had us in a wee love bubble and brought us to some thoughts and new hopes. We have been thinking about our future and all that family life will hold, it has us both feeling motivated and excited which has led to this post and thought sharing with you all. We dont know where will be be five years from now but we have a plan to find a new place to call home and claim residence for the benefit of a happy family life. After all, family is the most important gift and to grow together with an ever flourishing relationship is what really matters. Happy Valentines everybody.

To you and yours, love always wins.

 

Keren.

Mum guilt; The real deal.

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It’s a funny old thing, you become a parent and all of a sudden you are no longer your own person, you are a Mother, a Father. You lose a sense of identity but gain a whole new realm of responsibility and love that you didn’t even know was capable.

The love for your baby, your child, is like no other. I have not experienced so much love nor emotions prior to the birth of my wee Eleanor. The best and the worst of myself has been put to light and I see the world from a whole new perspective.

I am not as easy going and care free as I once was and the world is now a scary place through the eyes of this over protective parent. I would like to focus this post on something that I have recently began to notice creep up on shopping trips or days out. A feeling that has rised from within and hits like a tonne of bricks ,a feeling that all you Mothers are well aware of.

Mum guilt. No matter what you do, it simply does not feel good enough. It is a losing battle where we are the sole contender.

Guilt, we all feel it, with the exclusion of active sociopaths, add a baby or child to the mix and guilt is suddenly intensified. What exactly is Mum guilt and where does it come from? It has seemed to appear out of the blue for myself and has prevented me from doing the things that I love and taking some time out for myself. Wether that be a half hour shut away to read, getting out for a lone walk or even (god forbid) having a day of pampering.

No matter what my intention lately, I always have a terrible feeling of guilt hang over my head, ready to exploit my mind with shameful thoughts whenever I dare put myself first. I feel that I have lost a sense of freedom and self worth since becoming a Mum, something which is quite hard to adapt to and take control of.

I no longer deem it acceptable to treat myself, not without fear that I should have treated my baby over myself. Do I need this? I ask myself this often. A shopping trip is short lived, and rather than taking items I pick out to the till, I return them to the rack or shelf which I plucked them from. I feel guilty for wasting money on myself no matter the sum. I could have utilised any spenditure on Eleanor rather than myself.

I find myself anxious of time and feeling bad for dragging my baby out just so I can pick up a carton of milk for myself or browse the stores when I could be at home, holding her, giving my undivided attention. I tend to get out but feel panic and pushed for time, I can’t relax for fear that she will want a feed or begin to get uncomfortable and cry.

Crying is perfectly normal for a baby to get attention and I know I have the security that she is always changed and fed before I take her out, I can’t help but feel unsettled at the thought of her crying in public. I always feel that it’s my fault for dragging her out and that I have led her to be unhappy for my own pleasure. Mum guilt.

I no longer indulge in any alcohol or nights out as I feel that my baby could need me at any time when I am apart from her. I just can’t leave her behind knowing that she is my responsibility and could need me at any time. I have reluctantly left her for no more than four hours with my Mother so that Euan and I can catch a screening at the cinema. This has only ever been around four separate occasions, a month apart at least.

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I can’t bring myself to leave her no matter who with or how capable they are. Knowing that Eleanor is so tiny and may need me at any time. I know that my baby is loved and nurtured and with that understanding , I must implicate healthy changes for the benefit of my own health.

I am not just a Mother, I am my own person with interests and needs that I need to fulfill every once in a while. It is important to take time for myself and my own sanity, i owe it to myself to give myself a break without feeling the need to explain and justify my actions.

With that in mind, I am off to the hairdresser next Saturday on a solo outing for a bit of me time and pampering. I am after a fresh dye job and cut, both much needed and long overdue. Oops, blame Motherhood on that one. Free time does not come freely.  A trip to the salon may not seem a big deal to many of you, I’d previously not have thought anything of it either but these days a little time out to spoil myself is a rare occasion.

Following this, we are going to see Stereophonics at the end of the month for a parents night out. How dare we? I’m absolutely looking forward to this and an evening out with my love, I fully plan to make the most of being child free, let my hair down and have fun. I have plans to go all out with a glass of wine in a plastic cup and greasy gig chips.

The last time we went to a gig together was back in July and I was heavily pregnant and spent most of the gig nursing a sore back. This time, I can make a better go at it and not retire early. I got this.

I’m sure that my Mum guilt will be in full swing but im going to really try to get myself into a good mindset and forget Mum duties for the night. It will be time for my partner and I to enjoy. Eleanor will be in capable, loving hands, I just need to let go, chill and live a little. If I can push the Mum guilt aside for even just one night, it will be a milestone itself.

I feel that as Mothers and Fathers, we put so much pressure on ourselves to be the best parents we can be, we get ourselves down when something doesnt go to plan or work out as we had hoped and we hold ourselves responsible for any setbacks, the guilt can be too much to take some days.It’s time to start pushing that unnecessary guilt trips that we love to drive down aside and putting ourselves first once in a while.

Book a pamper day, take yourself out for a coffee, set a date for a night out (and follow plans through) and for God sakes, buy the dress. Life is too short to spend it consumed with guilt, we all deserve a break once in a while.

Parenthood is hard, it is testing, it is wonderful. Let’s not be so hard on ourselves, our babies will still love us after a few hours without our company.

Keren x

Yes, babies cry. Deal with it (and love them hard)

I am writing this post having been inspired by a recent trip to the GP for concerns over the health of our baby daughter, Eleanor. A baby who has always been, in my opinion very vocal and dependent. I believe this to stem from her connection with me due to breastfeeding. I could be wrong.

My partner had suggested that we call the GP to make an appointment regarding an issue with our baby who seems to cry constantly and wriggle around in pain. Eleanor has reflux which is currently controlled by medication, however, some days not even medication seems to help.

I called the doctor to make an appointment for as soon as possible. I didn’t want Eleanor to be in pain but nor did I expect much was up. She was after all, just being her usual self.  Euan arrived home to attend the appointment, I discovered that we were taking the car to the GP which is a short distance from home, I became upset and wound up.

You see, this sounds silly but it’s tough for me to get out alone. I spend much of my time alone with her and a lot of this is spent indoors as it’s just too tricky to get out, especially with being in a first floor flat. If I want to go anywhere, there is a whole battle with the Pram getting down stairs and out the door before we even get moving.

Some days it isn’t worth the fight with Eleanor if she is in a particularly sleepy or in a grumpy mood. I find I don’t have the fight in me to battle through the cries very often, blame it on the lack of sleep.

It’s easier for me to simply just return home than to deal with the stares of strangers passing judgment as I still past with my baby screaming out from her Pram. I’m not cut out for public judgement, it brings a great deal of anxiety. So, with that mental image and sound of a babies cry echo through your eardrums, forgive me for getting upset having had my dream of five minutes in the fresh air, shattered.

What might not seem a big deal to some, can be a huge deal for others. Something which I have recently learned. We all handle things differently and lately, I feel like I can barely handle things at all. I spend most days alone and some times I feel as though I am losing my mind. Perhaps I am. Perhaps I lack social interaction.

I understand that my partner has work commitments but a five minute walk is not really going to make such a big difference to the working day when  opposed to three minutes in the car? I feel alone much of the time right now and the inability to get out can lead me to feel like I’m stuck in these four walls, all I wished for was my partner to take a short walk to the GP clinic with me. I was once very active and I crave to lead an active life again.

A life that has more challenging excercise to it than the constant bending to change nappies or emptying the tumble dryer. I need to walk, I need to have fresh air. Without it, I go crazy. I’ve given up on my fitbit for the moment as the step count became so pitiful, I felt ashamed to even track and document it.

Back to the GP, the reasoning of this post, I had a feeling that I knew what the doctor would say, having been in this position before. I’m usually lucky to get an appointment as its normally an automated phone service. Nonetheless, the story never changes and the outcome is always “babies cry, it’s a phase” or something along those lines.

I’m never taken seriously with the GPS and feel as though my worries are over looked and brushed off as though I am a mere hypochondriac. Even if I were, I would expect better care and time in the hands of the professionals than what they tend to give.

There was no answer. Babies cry and that’s just how it is. Some are more vocal than others yes, but it doesn’t mean that anything is wrong. It were suggested that we try control crying.. as if this would help with her round the clock cries. I wasn’t looking for answers of how to get my baby into a night sleep routine, and I didn’t want advice for control crying, I’d get more information from a book to be frank.

I wasn’t looking for anything actually,  I knew all too well how the appointment would go and knew that I would leave feeling stupid. My partner wanted this appointment as he was certain something was up. I merely booked it to prove a point and to show him that what I tell him when I call the GP each time is not a lie. I wanted him to see for himself how it goes. I wanted to prove my point and stamp my feet at the same time. My inner diva was out to play. I fear you not.

Some babies cry more so than others and they want held. This I know to be true with Eleanor. We were told that she was on the top dose for her reflux medication and to keep with this. When solid food becomes more frequent, her reflux should improve. Other than that, deal with the crying and just get on. If I felt it necessary, I could make an appointment to see the Health Visitor for advice on control crying but there was no cause for concern.

This was all said as I sat there choked up and crying spontaneously myself. I was crying because I was mad to have taken the car when I had hopes of fresh air. I was crying because I was drained, physically and emotionally. I was crying because this was the first outing of the week that involved human interaction  and it was now Wednesday afternoon.

I was mad at my partner, Euan for making me book an appointment to which I knew the outcome. I was told that he would get answers and yet here we are, no further than I have ever got before, Eleanor still crying.

I feel an element of guilt. Guilt that I can’t help my crying baby, I can’t take away her reflux and stop the back arching pain soar through her tiny body. I feel guilty that I want so desperately to have a break from her, even just for five minutes of peace. I feel guilty that I feel the need to have a break from her. As her Mother, I shouldn’t want a break from her. Should I?

I often can feel a whole lot of guilt and it seems that my best is never nor ever will be good enough. I ponder over thoughts about my parenting and I wonder if I’m a good Mother. I wonder if my Daughter knows how much I love her and I worry that I am incapable of the around the clock care she requires.

The Gp, I assume was left wondering who the appointment was initially made for. The sobbing mess of a Mother that I presented to her, or the baby sleeping in her car seat as though butter would not melt? Typical.

The thing is, the GP was correct, babies cry and all that we can do is hold them close and love them harder. It’s hard, it’s real tough, especially when you feel so hopeless and can’t help them take the discomfort of reflux away. Or even know the reason behind the cries. Is it reflux, teething, ear ache?

The guilt you feel along with the pain can be overbearing and overwhelming and I forget that as parents, we too are only human and we need to give ourselves a break and cut some slack or we will lose our minds. Its hard to always remain on top on situations and it’s hard to mimic what a baby wants at all times. Some days, there is just no pleasing these tiny humans.

I guess, I should be both grateful and thankful of Eleanor’s super dependent personality. I am lucky that I have my baby to hold and come time, I will look back and miss the cuddles and the closeness of my baby girl.

The days when I’m back at work and wish I could be curled up with her lovingly by my side at home, when she is a stroppy pre teen and I’m no longer cool enough to cuddle. I should take these moments to appreciate my ‘needy and vocal’ baby and love her as hard as I can all while embracing her before it’s too late and she no longer cares for the comfort of my company.

I hope that through weaning, the reflux will ease off. Our journey with food has only just began and we are still on select puree foods. I hope that when we venture into more tastes and textures, introduce baby led weaning her reflux will slowly disappear and we can forget about the difficulties that it has brought. Until then, I will continue to monitor and control it as best as I can with medication and a whole lot of baby cuddles. I hope that as she grows, she will become more independent and less reliant on myself, with this, the tears will stop too.

If you too have the struggle of a very vocal baby, don’t feel so alone. There’s always someone going through the same and there is always a light at the end of the tunnel.

We as parents are often too hard on ourselves and can be our own worst enemy, let’s be a little more appreciative of our efforts. After all, we are only doing our best and there are days that push the limits but we have to see past this. Take the good with the bad.

So here I am, sat on the sofa, same spot as always with a lukewarm cup of coffee, staring at a blank screen with a numb buttom from lack of movement,  preaching to all you parents out there, to take your baby and love them hard.

Keren x