Thursday, 29 May 2008

At a Loss

The great post-baby fallout has begun; I am now moulting, losing my hair.

This is not helped by Isobel's tendency to hold me close by holding a handful of my hair in each hand, nor by my self-esteem boosting daily blow dry.

But it should be helped by various hair products, except they all offer more body; I have plenty of body, it's hair I need!

(Panic not, I have a long way to go before my hair loss reaches PD proportions.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Apologies For The Loss of Transmission...

but I just didn't feel like posting.

Normal Service is now resumed.

Get Up and Go

I always thought I'd be the kind of Mum who quite happily packed up her baby and took her wherever she felt like going. But actually I'm not.
You see I have created a lovely little bubble for Isobel and I, it stretches about from here to Richmond and back again. Kind of distances I can walk to, but don't always.

We have lovely friends within this radius: my NCT group who, some weeks, I see most days, Godmother Chirsty and lovely Nicola who lives next door. Not to mention those friends we meet for lunch. So we have always been out and about, just out and about in our local area.

When it comes to trips further afield my confidence wavers more than a little. That's not to say I don't do it, I'm just not quite as free and easy about it as I'd like to be.

Anyway, this last weekend we went to Grandma's and Isobel played with her cousins.






I'm hoping she'll soon get used to playing with other children and there won't be a need to retire quietly to the bedroom to restore peace. I guess living in a quiet house where only 2 people speak at once and only one soundtrack is playing doesn't prepare her for the onslaught of a full on family gathering.


Or, maybe she was upset because she couldn't have any of Auntie Amy's birthday cake.


(Happy 21st Blues, I'm really proud of you. xx)

Thursday, 22 May 2008

Hot Date

Last night PD and I went out for dinner.

Three months ago this wouldn't really be that note worthy; but now, after three months of my evening social life consisting of the settee (and the odd evening in the garden), it's a massive deal.

I was so excited I even wore a top I couldn't breastfeed in, luckily I still wore breast pads else I may have had a one person wet t-shirt competition.

Thank you Nicola for looking after our angel baby (who uttered not a peep). We may have only been five minutes away in the restaurant at the end of the road, and we may have only been gone a couple of hours, but it was a big night out for me!

One Kir and a glass of Chablis and I was positively tipsy - a cheap date these days.

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

Material Girl

No Isobel isn't a Madonna in the making - well not that I know of - but she does have a certain amount of love for various 'things':

Her love for her mobile has not abated.

The love for the flowers in her pram has, along with her field of vision, grown to include those on the hood...




I think this minky-monkey-moo may be next on the hit parade



(It's actually quite cool, Isobel is beginning to reach out to grab things - I'll get back to you in a month and tell you if I still think this is cool.)

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

Don't Push Me Because I'm Close to the Edge

Having Isobel has been the best thing I have ever done. These last 11 weeks she has made me sooo happy. I look at my lovely little girl and I'm very proud; there is no-one I want to spend more time with.

So, why then does it always feel like tears aren't very far behind, or that I'm only a few steps away from a melt-down bigger than the artic shelf.

I know I'm a good Mum, don't I?

How can I be content and insecure at the same time?

Monday, 19 May 2008

Conversation

Isobel is nearly 3 months old and is growing and changing so rapidly.

Our Mother and Daughter chats started out as me gazing adoringly at Isobel and Isobel gazing at a point somewhat short of my nose.

Then I'd gaze adoringly and she's look back bemused.

We progressed to me gazing adoringly and Isobel returning my gaze with fascination.

Now I gaze adoringly, she smiles back and we chat. Okay so neither of us can understand each other but it's definitely a two way conversation.

Isobel is a very chatty girl. I can't imagine where she gets that from.

Friday, 16 May 2008

Green Cross Code 2

Green Cross Code

I've never been particularly good at crossing roads, I've never been run over but I have always been a little hasty and perhaps a little reckless.

Not any more. When pushing a pram in front of me I am always a keen observer of green men. I mean who, in their right mind, would push their baby into the road in front of them without making damn sure it is safe. (It's just too scary to contemplate.)

In the absence of the Green Cross Code man it will me who teaches Isobel to 'Stop, look and listen'


I am uniquely qualified for the job (guess which one is me!):



(Yes it's David Prowse who despite being famed for being the Green Cross Code man also had a bit part in Star Wars, as Darth Vader)

Tuesday, 13 May 2008

A Room of Ones Own

While I am holding up my hands to the fact that I have thought about stopping breastfeeding, I may as well admit that I have moved Isobel into her own room.

This was something I poo-pooed everytime PD mentioned it; I just didn't think I was ready (yes, this is all about ME!).

In the end I decided perhaps it would be good for PD and me, and hopefuly, please god, hopefully wouldn't do Isobel any harm. Everyone else was doing it. (For everyone else read my NCT group, yes my world seems to begin and end there.)

So, on Friday I moved her. First she had her morning nap there, just so I could see how I felt about it. Then I put her to bed there - our earliest bedtime yet 7:15. So far so good.

Then I went to bed. And I cried and cried until I went to sleep.

Now? Well she is still sleeping next door and I am still glued to the monitor. I can't really say I sleep that much better, nor can I say she does, but I think PD does.

But it had to happen one day and I suppose it isn't without benefits for PD and I, and Isobel does love her lights.

Everyone Needs a Bosom for a Pillow

How can I think bad thoughts about breastfeeding when Isobel has just finished and bobbed her head so it is now resting on my boob, smiling drowsily to let me know it's the best pillow in the world.

Breast is Best - Isn't It?

That is a rhetorical question: I know it is. But, having written a post about how much I love breastfeeding, I can't stop thinking about all the things I don't love about it, and not just my limited wardrobe.

I don't love not knowing how much milk my baby has had on a hot summers day.

I don't love that she doesn't feed well when we are out, which happens a lot as she feeds every 2 1/2 hours, so then see above. (Yes, you can all say you should stretch her feeds out, but do you want to come and hold her while she cries and screams - no, I thought not.)

I don't love having my nipple stretched to unimaginable (except maybe at the Torture Garden) lengths as Isobel decides to look around or simply bob her head a bit. I will definitely not be feeding when she gets teeth.

Maybe, just maybe I'd like more than one glass of wine.

I love and don't love the fact that I am the only one who can feed her.

But all that said, there really is no reason to stop until she is four months old*. Six more weeks to go.

* Apparently this is when her digestive tract is 'closed' and so is better able to cope with non-boob milk substances.

Monday, 12 May 2008

Fluff and Nonsense

This post could, on so many levels, be another confession but the sun is still shining so I thought not.

Isobel has dirty hands. She still has the 'grip reflex' and therefore spends much of her time with clenched fists. You can imagine my shame when said hand uncurled to reveal palms containing sticky fluff. It's a bit like tummy button fluff - always blue! (Why / How is that? Answers on a postcard please.)

It really shouldn't have been a big surprise, as a non-dummy* sucking little girl Isobel's chosen self-soothe of choice is her fist; actually we have now progressed to thumb, which is complimented by rubbing of the head with the other hand. It's very cute if not always very effective.


* I'm not going to get into the whole dummy debate, whatever I say someone will take offense or have a different opinion ...

All I'll say is I offered her a dummy, she reacted as if it was the most abhorrent thing on this earth so I gladly stopped trying. They serve a purpose, but they are not for us.

Saturday, 10 May 2008

Growing...

Isobel is now 10 weeks old and changing and growing by the minute.

She is growing used to the lovely sunshine and the heat (yes I said heat, it's over 26 degrees today)

Out-growing not only her clothes, but also her bath

And soon her beloved pram


Most of all she is growing into a beautiful happy little girl who smiles A LOT and shouts a little. She is becoming a proper little person, a proper little Isobel.

And everyday my love for her grows, so much so I sometimes think my heart will burst. x




Thursday, 8 May 2008

Love Bites

Having just written a post about how much I love breastfeeding my impatient daughter, while trying to produce a nipple from my arm, has given me a lovebite .

Breastfeeding

You know something ? I am sure you do, but do you know this something. I LOVE breastfeeding my baby.

Before I was pregnant the idea that my boobs would be for something other than decoration or a handy way of distracting from the less perky parts of my body was a little odd, but at the same time so totally right.

I Love that my body can produce the best nourishment my daughter will ever have.

I love the fact that my boobs not my hips support my coffee and cake, tea and biscuits lifestyle. (Soo Rock and Roll me!)

I love the fact that I can get up and go without packing bottles.

I love that I only have one bottle a day to wash (I express a bottle supposedly for PD to feed)

But most of all, most of all


I LOVE the way my baby looks up at me and smiles.




(But you know what I don't Love - the fact that my wardrobe is still limited, limited to those items that can accommodate a lactating bosom, provide support and yet easy access. Summer is here and I can't wear most of my dresses - that really sucks.)

Sunday, 4 May 2008

Jiggling

While I love my daughter to distraction, I can honestly say the evenings have been our most challenging time slot.

The calories that have been burnt rocking / jiggling our child to sleep or near sleep add up to the several bars of Green and Blacks white chocolate we have consumed to console ourselves.

I know you should always put your baby down awake and let her drop off on her own; I know by taking this short-cut now we are storing up trouble for later on; but, when Isobel has been unhappy for an hour or so we'll do anything to stop the pain. (And yes, I know it is our pain not hers.) In fact I know this so well I once included it in a post I had the good sense not to publish - a post about all the things I planned to do and not do when I had the baby. I was always going to put my baby down awake, I do often - in the mornings for example, my angel baby will go back in her crib and merrily gurgle her way to sleep.

Anyway, good intentions are always just that, 'intentions', reality has often been different.

Now, we are back on the no jiggling bandwagon. Quiet cuddles (maybe a little rocking) then down to sleep it is.

Our first foray into this zone found me standing over an unhappy Isobel as she lay in her crib; I stood there shushing and rubbing her tummy. It was a long fifteen minutes but you know what - it worked, she went to sleep and stayed that way for many hours.

I suspect we have a long way to go, but it's a good start. Last night Isobel just went down peacefully, but I suspect that has more to do with fresh air and a good nap, then me.

Tonight, well, Isobel is overtired (again), so maybe we'll be earning our chocolate, but I do INTEND to try not to jiggle or rock (well, not too much anyway).

Saturday, 3 May 2008

Nine Weeks

Everyone keeps telling us how hard the first twelve weeks are, but how quickly things get better from there.


Well, weeks five and six were quite tough with lots of shouting (Isobel's mainly), and lots of crying (mine - 'my baby is unhappy'), we had a couple of odd days last week, but I can honestly say that things are actually pretty good already, so I can't imagine how good it will be in three weeks time!

Ok so Isobel still has a tendency towards overtiredness; we are heading towards a sleeping through, but are no where near there yet; and routine shmoutine, I've thrown my red book away - we'll get the begining and the end of the day right, what hapens in between, well we shall see.


I used to wonder if I'd ever be able to put her down for five minutes to do stuff, but right now she is smiling me at me from her bouncy chair. All in all, she is a lovely, happy, smiley little girl...

who this week has started to dribble.

9th Saturday

On our 9th Saturday I left Isobel with PD while I went for a much needed trip to the hairdressers.


This was the first time I'd left an awake Isobel with PD (only the second time ever I've left her), and it was a little odd.


Sitting chatting it was odd to think that I have a baby but at the same time odd to think that there was ever a time that didn't have her.


Anyway, the rest of the day, PD, Isobel and I (flicky hair and all), spent outside the White Swan.


A lovely day and the world passed us by; Leela and Jasper our NCT buddies stopped for a chat; we twisted our passing neighbours rubber arms and they stopped for a drink, and finally the Fairy Godfather came by.




It was the place to be!

Sling Shot

So, yesterday was our first family outing; PD had never been to Kent before and he loves playing King of the Castle, so Leeds Castle it was. 'Lovely' castle, cool moat, rubbish weather - typical english day out really. Oh well, our tickets are valid for a year so we can do the maze another day.

Prams, quite rightly, aren't allowed in the castle, so Isobel travelled strapped to PDs chest. She loved it so much she slept the whole afternoon.


I knew it was a successful family trip when, on the way home, I looked in my rear view mirror to see this...



(PD had climbed in the back to when Princess Isobel had become distressed at leaving her castle behind)

The funny thing is it felt like I hadn't seen Isobel all day, so I was really happy to get home and whop out a boob and feed her.