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I'm back...

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Yes I am back. I'll be honest parenting takes up well all of your once "free time" and the "free time" you get only happens after a good bedtime battle after which you slob in front of the telly, to which you don't even realise is the YouTube live repeats of peppa pig. The mum life is real and it's all consuming and it's far to easy to loose that sense of YOU.
So the other night I sat down and wrote a list of all my hobbies (blogging) being one and have decided that now the sprog is no longer a newborn it's time to make time for me again. 
That said you may hear a little more from me from now on. I'm not going to commit myself to a schedule of postings as life just doesn't allow for that but what I will do is write when I can. Follow my insta as I am sure to shout about it on there when I do @hollybobbinblog 

Week Eight

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Everyone always say they grow up fast and crikey their not wrong. I can't believe we now have an 8 week old baby and we've been doing this parenting thing for that long!

These last four weeks since our last update seems to be full of changes, I finally gave up the breastfeeding at 6 weeks. He is such a demanding baby and it meant we just couldn't get out the door some days which made both of us miserable. It feels like an end of an era as it's all we ever knew but he has taken to the bottle feeding great and it's great to share the load with Tom too.
He smiled for the first time this month whilst laying in bed with his dad, so we now spend a lot of time making ridiculous noises trying to get those little smiles (our poor neighbours must think we are a couple of nutters!). Now he smiles it feels so much more rewarding, even when we are up at 3am.
He is so much more alert, taking everything in and interest in toys and playmats, bring on the plastic tack that my house is about to be covered in!
He just does not stop growing and is now fitting into size 3-6 month clothing, so I have sorted through everything that doesn't fit and popped it into the loft. It's amazing how long I spent ironing, organising and preparing his clothes whilst pregnant, to then already be out a lot of them.
This month also saw us host a 'Welcome to the World' party which we had instead of a baby shower. It was a lovely day and great for him to meet so many of our friends and family. We also took him back to my family in Rutland, which was lovely but my god do you have to remember a lot of stuff.

I have also been going to a few mother and baby groups, which has been daunting but really nice to chat to other mums going through the same milestones that we are.

Health wise we had our last home health visitor appointment, and our six week check so we are all signed off the health service. Although injections are happening Monday.

Here's to week eight ... bring on the next four...

Delivering a Special Care Baby

Monday, 7 August 2017

When you think about the birth of your baby, you think about 'will there be forceps? will I be cut front to back? and at worst case will I have an emergency c-section' never do you think that your baby will be in intensive care especially after a "text book" pregnancy.

However I wanted to share my story about our experience as it may offer some comfort to anybody who is going through the same thing. And as this is sort of my online diary I wanted to get pen to paper as such whilst it's still relatively fresh, as this is the journey of how our little babe came into the world.

So, following on from my amazing waterbirth the midwife started to perform the standard newborn tests and slowly one by one poor Archie was failing them. First his hearing (this is pretty standard due to all the gunk that goes with birth) then his blood sugar levels where low which was worrying as he was born on 97th percentile, then his oxygen pre and post his heart, it was dangerously low post which meant his lungs were not working to their full capacity.
On this our midwife quickly summons a cot and he was wheeled off to the neonatal intensive care unit quickly followed by Tom. Unfortunately I was too weak to walk, so had to slowly make my way up to the unit. The staff are amazing and kept me so calm that it didn't really hit me till I entered the assessment room. The little babe that was sprawled across my chest moments before was now in an open incubator being worked on my a whole team of doctors, consultants and nurses. Tubes and wires inserted all over his tiny body whilst multiple blood tests where drawn. I remember feeling so helpless and emotional, we waited until we spoke to his consultant who explained that he needed to be kept in the unit on high Dependancy for the next few days, he went into detail about potential problems that Archie may have but we needed to wait for tests,scans and bloods to be returned. Dazed and drained we headed back to the delivery room where we had him on our own, the room that was so joyous felt sad and empty, as we lay there in silence waiting to be moved to our own room and wondering how our baby was.
Eventually at 8pm we were moved into our own room off the main postnatal ward. Both exhausted and only room for me to sleep we decided it was best that Tom went home to catch up on some sleep as we knew we had a long week ahead of us. I'll never forget opening up my suitcase that night and seeing the tiny "going home" outfit all ironed on top along with a little grey bunny my mum had bought him. I think that's when it hit me, that and hearing the cries of all the other babies on the ward outside. Why couldn't I have my baby with me? I spent the whole night crying into the little bunny.

The next day when Tom arrived we went up to the unit and spent the whole morning sat next to his incubator. They cover the incubators in thick duvets so you can't see in very well but it was nice to know he was next to us.
After the doctors and consultants had done their rounds they decided that it would be OK for Archie to have skin to skin with just me. I really felt for Tom, he was going through the same pain as me but was still unable to hold his baby.
It took two nurses to transfer him on to my chest, when I held him it was so emotional and I never wanted to let go. I only had an hour with him as not to stress him too much, but my god it was amazing! I think the photos say a thousand words.
That evening Tom went home and I sat next to his incubator all night, chatting to the other mums in the unit who were doing the same. The nurse we had on that night was brilliant and we slowly turned his oxygen down to see how he coped which he did brilliantly. It was so good to see him coping so well. She said that if we could get it down then he would have a good chance of being 'normalised' the next day following the consultants rounds.
I went back to my room, and got some rest and waited till 7am when I knew Tom would be back. We went up to the unit and our little boy was in a hospital cot with less wires, they had normalised him. We hid our relief and joy as we were in a room full of sick babies who were not so lucky and the desperate parents that was once you. The nurses spent the day with me establishing feeding and closely monitoring his progress until an emergency came  on to the ward and we are moved down the corridor from high Dependancy to special care. The room was so full and we were squeezed into a corner, I couldn't take it anymore & begged them to let me have him in my room with me as he was only on antibiotics through his canula for suspected sepsis although nothing was confirmed as we needed to wait for bloods to come back.

They let me have him in my room and it was amazing, just how it should be after childbirth sat in a hospital bed having skin to skin.
We were eventually discharged on Father Day and now have a happy and healthy almost 8 week old baby.

I wanted to share my experience so if their are any parents going through a similar experience that you are not alone and if your pregnant that it's ok if your journey doesn't go to plan not to worry.

If you have any questions then don't hesitate to comment or contact me privately. 

Week Four

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Where have the last 4 weeks gone? During my pregnancy it seem to take an age to get from one month to the next and now he's here it's gone in a blink.
The first four weeks of motherhood have been a rollercoaster but I can honestly say I have never been happier.

The Month Round Up

We have been discharged from midwife care, it took a while as he struggled to gain weight but we got there and it felt like an end of an era as I have continuously looked forward to the next appointment throughout the pregnancy.
Also on a medical note Archie has his tongue tie snip which was a little disturbing to watch as a mum but now he feeds like a dream. So any mamas out there awaiting the refferal, don't stress it takes seconds and they soon forget about it!

Talking of feeding we are still continuing our breastfeeding journey which is well, ... time consuming to say the least. I have also started to introduce a little formula to top Archie up after feeds and so that if we're out or I'm away from him he has some form of food.

Mum groups...yes I have braved the mum groups! It totally feels like some sort of strange first date but it is so worth it. It gets you out the house, gives the babies a chance to socialise and you a chance to have a hot cuppa and share some experiences with other mums. So if your sat here reading this thinking you haven't actually ventured out in the last two weeks (it happens when your sole focus is your little bean) then look up local classes online and get out there I promise it's not as scary as you think and it will do you both the world of good.

Archie's development this month, he is so much more alert he has started to really open his eyes and take in everything around him, although his favourite activity is to stare at my stripy tops on the washing line (easily pleased). He has also started to happily self soothe himself to sleep if he's sleepy enough and is loving his bath times. But pretty much at this age all the do is sleep ... just not at night.

Next month I'm looking forward to...

- A bit more sleep

- Maybe a smile appearing?

Surviving Life with a Newborn

Friday, 23 June 2017

The first few days and weeks are already blurring into one, and with some of our first days spent in hospital (all explained in labour & delivery part 2, when I feel I can write about it) I'm trying to savour every moment. But there is no doubt about it, having a baby is a huge life change so here's a few tips that have helped keep my sanity over the past week and a half.

So new mamas and mums to be listen up...

1. Get dressed Everyday
With your baby crying in your ear or constantly attached to your boob getting dressed becomes a luxury. It is so important to not just slum it in your pjs, otherwise your life will just blur into one. I'm not talking about throwing on a scruffy pair of trackies, pull out the maternity jeans and treat yourself to a few new feeding tops or tops if bottle feeding. Online shopping is a god send!

2.Eat Well
Becoming obsessed with someone else's feeding routine means often forgetting about yourself. However, it's more important than ever to be fuelled up especially when running on little sleep. Preparing a three course meal is near on impossible, but investing in some wholesome ready meals is the way through the first few days. We particularly liked the Charlie Bingham range! Order them online & get them delivered to your door! 

3. Salt Baths
Having just pushed out your beautiful baby into the world your downstairs region may not be looking just so beautiful, and feeling rather sore. I found that once little one is settled in the evening (pass them over to dad) running a hot bath full of salt really helped to soothe and repair down there. It's also a great time out period in the day even if it's just for 5 mins. 

4. Get Dad or Family to change your bedsheets.
Nothing beats clean bed linen and when your eyes are stinging at 3am trying to get the baby to latch or finish a bottle at least do it in the most comfort. I also think that fresh sheets make you sleep better, so at least the hours in between your getting a good sound sleep.

5. Leave the House
Even just to post a letter! A bit of fresh air and a good waddle is good for not just you but for your little one too. There are some studies that suggest fresh air helps babies to sleep longer, and no new parent will pass on that! It may feel like a military operation to get out the door but persist it will make you feel so much better.

Let me know your tips for adapting to newborn life in the comments.

Introducing Archie George - Week One

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Archie George



Well, I could never of imagined how the first week of becoming a new mum would be. You think you have an idea but nothing will prepare you for the reality. It's the most amazing thing in the world and you are all consumed by your tiny being. Don't let me give you the impression it has all been plain sailing, there has been a hell of a lot of tears, cross words, stinging tired eyes and sore nipples. But that all goes out the window when you look into their teeny eyes.
This week Archie, you have been discharged from hospital at 4 days old, met nanny and grandad as well as a whole host of family and friends. We have experienced your first poo explosion, you weed all over daddy in bed and we have started to establish breast feeding.
The nights are hard work but it is all worth it.

I hope you enjoy following our journey.

Labour and Delivery Story

Having read what feels like every labour and delivery story post out there it is finally my turn to share my experience. Grab a cuppa (& a tissue in my case, damn those post pregnancy hormones) and here goes.

We had had dinner with family in North Norfolk and the ride home was full of bumpy country lanes. As we drove home I joked that it was enough to put we into labour... little did I know.

We got home about 9pm and I had a few Braxton Hicks which I was getting most nights so didn't think anything of it and had an early night.
I woke up at 3am and was still having Braxton Hicks (or so I thought) so I got Tom to grab my birthing ball and just bounced on it over the side of the bed. I was still pretty comfortable, although the pains were coming in intervals. From then we started to time them but they were pretty inconsistent. I then for some mad reason remembered I had left the kitchen in a bit of a mess so I started frantically cleaning. By this time I was starting to feel pretty uncomfortable but not painful. All I can remember is cleaning a bit then hunching over the worktop, breathing through the cobtractions. My waters were leaking but I never had the Hollywood gush and quite frankly with all the pressure down there I just thought I was leaking urine (lovely). I then called the Midwife Led Birthing Unit who said to stay at home and call back later on. So I ran a bath and put on the hypnobirthing music. Tom fed we two pieces of toast, banana and an ice lolly in between contractions and I was constantly drinking water. I then rotated from bouncing on the ball to being in the bath (our bathroom was a state by the end of it). The contractions were coming quick and strong so I got Tom to call the unit again as they were lasting 57seconds 1-2mins apart. The lady on the phone said it was time to go in. Tom grabbed all our stuff and I put my maxi dress on and got in the car. I kept my headphones in the whole time listening to my hypnobirthing, with all the windows wound down. It was fine driving along, just any traffic lights made the contractions more uncomfortable.
We got to the hospital at 7:30am and parked up. We walked to the reception and I remember struggling and thought I'm going to have to crawl there any moment but kept going. We had no idea where we were going but luckily a nurse found us and took us to the unit as I was hunched over the reception desk. All I can remember is telling her if forgot to put my bra on (most random, labour is a funny thing).
When we arrived outside the unit I was having very intense contractions, and a lovely midwife came and took me in from the corridor. She took me in and showed us to our room which was all set out with candles, music and a pool just what I had wanted.
I then met my amazing midwife Zoe (I get so emotional thinking just how kind she was to me, especially in the aftermath of the birth). She had to examine me and see how far I had dialated as well as check my blood pressure, temperature and baby's heart rate. She did her examination and to both our amazement I was 10cm and ready to push. I really do think that the hypnobirthing techniques keep you so calm that others around you may think you are less dialated than you are.
The student Ellie put the hot tap on and warmed the pool whilst Zoe and Tom got me ready. The warm water instantly look the edge off the contractions. I didn't really feel this overwhelming urgency to push but with Zoe's help I started and could feel my baby start to come out and down. It's the most amazing and weird feeling in the world, to me it really did feel like having a huge poo, it all seemed to be in my bum (side note - I did not actually poo in my labour). Waiting for the contractions to come so I could push seemed an eternity a complete contrast to them feeling like they were coming all the time. I was pushing for 40 mins with encouragement from Zoe and Tom. Tom held a flannel on my head as I was hot and had my hand. I remember looking at the clock at 08:20 and Zoe telling me I'll have this baby by 9am! 
Then out he came! At 08:49 he floated in the pool and then Zoe passed him up to me! He was very grey and didn't cry for ages, however they say waterbirth babies are calmer. He did eventually cry and it was amazing, Tom was crying but I think I was in shock especially as he was so big at 10 pounds having measured small in my pregnancy! 
Zoe clamped and cut his cord in the pool and then gave me the injection for the placenta. I passed the baby to Tom whilst I lay on the bed and out came the placenta which was swiftly taken away. Tom then passed the baby back to me where we had skin to skin, we just lay there for a couple of hours but it went by so quickly. It was the most amazing experience.

It was then time to be stitched up which I have to say is pretty sore. Any pregnant ladies out there the wee afterwards is the worst bit! Ouch! 

Once I was stitched up, we were left for hours as a family enjoying skin to skin and taking photos. I can't even talk about it without welling up! 

Then it was time for the babies tests and this is where things started to turn a little pear shaped for us. Due to his size (he's over the 90th percentile) so his blood sugar levels had to be monitored. He then started to fail other tests such as the oxygen in his body so it was a case of wheeling him sharpish up to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). I want to write a whole other post on having a special care baby so I think I will leave it there for this one.

I want to say that I loved giving birth it was an amazing experience and wish I could relive it over and over. Everyone is so quick to share a horror story, but I found it empowering and loved every second.

For any ladies expecting or trying for a baby soon, I highly recommend the Hypnobirthing course offered on the NHS it really was the key to my calm birth.

Lastly a huge thank you to Zoe,Ali and Ellie who delivered our baby boy, Archie. The best day of my life.

Any spelling,grammer or mistakes .. cut me some slack I've had little sleep and I'm a new mama!