night night sleep tight

I have always dreaded the night that proves the boy has inherited his fathers sleep disturbances . I’ve always waited for the sound of tiny feet clambering around the bedroom, or loud one way conversations, or a complete panic and a few minutes of petrified between sleep and awake moments, in the night.

Well, apart from a few bad dreams, a few night-time separation anxieties and one way chats and giggles, it’s yet to be proved.

According to BabyCentre http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a558175/toddler-sleep-concerns-nightmares , nightmares in under 4 years olds is unusual. The boy did go through a stage where he would wake after a vivid and frightening dream and was able to recall what he had been dreaming of. Now, they didn’t sound like frightening sleep disturbances, but in his tender innocence I guess they were the most disturbing and upsetting things his little brain could come up with.

Here are the frightening encounters (as far as I could gather them!)

  1. a cow was sniffing his toe (his left, big toe – this is actually a recurring dream which he still has now but manages to shoo the cow away)
  2. someone ate all his crisps (my husband had earlier in the day eaten one of his crisps)
  3. something about purple and counting
  4. Peter Rabbit (just “Peter Rabbit” sobbed over and over)
  5. a cow was sniffing all his toes
  6. there was a bee in his bed
  7. he lost his big banana and he wanted it back
  8. he lost his handle on the bus
  9. he wanted his chocolate cake back

I consoled him with a cuddle and a kiss and back to bed, I consoled myself that if they were the worse things he could think of as happening to him then we were doing ok.

Starting nursery

The boy had his first day at nursery today. I want him to go to nursery, its a nice, small, friendly nursery and we were really lucky to have been offered a place. He was ok, he didn’t love it, he didn’t run in shouting “bring it on” (as I secretly hoped but of course didn’t expect).

I was a total mess, I wept a little a first (I was going through his “red book” with his teacher – so many memories) then I moved on to sniveling into a tissue and then exploding in tears (this seemed to take the teacher back a bit, I think she was on my side up until then).

I do want him to go to nursery but I’ve been trying to pin point what it is I’m anxious about. I’m worried he’ll be forgotten about, accidentally or purposely ignored, spoken to needlessly harsh, not cared for in the way I care, not given the food he likes, not put on the toilet the way he knows how to, to be left fend for himself in anything. These are things that might not happen, but they might. They are small things that every child has to bear at some point and of course quickly recover from.

He can’t possibly function without me can he? I do want him to go to nursery (have I said that?)

I think I’m also worrying that perfect boy will be ruined and it will turn out that my lovely, sweety, honey is actually a sappy, mummy’s boy, weakling. Or my lovely, sweety, honey will learn to scratch, bite and spit from “Alfie” and the little boy I knew will be gone for ever.

Update – We went again today and it was fine!

a whole new world

I was wondering what I should do in the year before I turn 40. I really want to do something crazy. Something thrilling with an element of danger. Something unexpected of me. Something life changing.

Yes, I’m going to try and have another baby.

I have just turned 39 and have entered the insane world of OPKs, DTD, DPOs, 2WWs, HPTs, BPNs and BFPs. At first I thought that I’d just have to have sex with my husband, but no! I have to learn a new acronym-ised language and become expert in biological statistics.

I’ve discovered a whole new world – to be ostracised from.

The most amazing thing I’ve discovered is that contraception is totally pointless. I can have sex the day before, the day of and the day after ovulating and not get pregnant. In other circumstances it would be quite liberating.

So I’ll be using my OPK then DTD, counting my DsPO, agonising during the 2WW, taking a HPT and hoping for a BFP. And if I get a BFP, I’ll be shitting myself!

Guest Post: An exercise in control

“Exercise helps fight postpartum depression” according to this latest study from Finland. Seeing as we have known for some time that exercise helps improve mood in everyone (whether depressed or not), it’s not going to make headline news.

But what this seeming statement of the obvious hides is that exercise benefits women suffering from PND (and all new mothers to some degree) above and beyond the action of the endorphins. Because what usually accompanies exercise is space. Whether you leave the house or simply go for a solitary walk, you gain a bit of distance from your children and your thoughts. When you’re feeling low and the children are demanding all of you, it can be very difficult to gain any sense of perspective. Knowing you’ve got an hour (or however long you have) of time, where you set the pace, you control what you do and how, can be enormously liberating. And if you can build it into your weekly schedule, you can also enjoy the anticipation (“I just have to get through this truly terrible day and I’ll be out”).

Exercise also literally helps you to feel like yourself again. As mothers of babies and small children, it’s so easy to spend all our time meeting the needs of other people. Sometimes it can feel like we’re having an out of body experience. When I was in the depths of my depression and you’d asked me how I was feeling, I’d have looked at you in astonishment. How on earth would I know? I had outsourced my feeling to another being.

But whether you’re doing pilates or yoga (great for stretching out shoulders and backs tight from feeding and carrying babies) or dancing the zumba, moving your body helps you become more aware of your own feelings. And once we start looking after ourselves, everything else starts working better too. Our relationships with our children and partners improve. We feel a bit calmer. There’s a bit more of a sense of a world outside of the feelings of insanity and pain.

It’s not a magic bullet. Exercise was just a part of my recovery, which included taking antidepressants, learning mindfulness, blogging and work. But it was (and remains) an important part. Over Christmas and New Year when I wasn’t able to get out and exercise because of looking after sick children, I felt trapped and exhausted. Some of the old feelings came flooding back. Because, at its core, choosing to use your body in a way that makes you feel good is a way of taking back a little bit of control. And when you’re struggling with PND or just finding motherhood tougher than you thought, that can mean the difference between keeping your head above the water or sinking.

Cat Dean blogs at http://www.postnatalsurvival.com and is the author of The Postnatal Survival Guide, available to download on all e-readers.

The Truth About Newborns

Having been inspired by a comment my husband made about an article on The Guardian website I have finally written my truth about new borns and thus finally finished my series of truths laid bare. The Truth About Newborns.

It is not intended as advice simply what I found to be true.

Oh and my husbands comment on that article was something along the lines of “she may as well said “how the f*** should I know””

do you mind if I don’t?

2013, unlucky for some?

This is my first post this year, in fact its my first post in a while. I don’t seem to have had as much to moan, worry and angst over recently and haven’t had much to say.

For the first time (possibly ever) I am not going to predict or plan, hope or dream about the new year, I’m going to just get on with it. See what happens. So as far as round ups of the year and new year resolutions go, well, do you mind if I don’t?

I am going to be fortunate enough though, to have a guest on my pages. Cat Dean who blogs at Oh no! We’ve got to go through it. will be popping in soon. I’m looking forward to having her company.

I’m not sure I want to say that I hope to post more in 2013, I’m quite liking not have much to moan, worry and angst over, but no doubt there’ll be a couple of things!

my life in 4 parts

Part 1

When I was a girl, I wanted to be an artist. I had thought through how I would like my life to be, even visualised a typical day. I followed my dream in the formal way, GCSE, A Level, University Degree. Then I realised that I wasn’t actually that good at “art” and terrible at being an “artist”. I really didn’t have anything else in mind to do, so I bumbled around various shops and temporary employment and accidentally found a desk job. The hideousness of this forced me to rethink my future and revisit my hopes and dreams.

Part 2

As unlikely as it may sound, I decided I wanted to work in Museums (some people find museums boring whereas I had always escaped from the present day into history and Museum collections). I buried myself in this new ambition and didn’t really lift my head again for a good few years and midst museum career.

Part 3

While my thirties rambled away a new vision crept in, a kind of life opposite to that I had. I wanted a family. I wanted a husband to adore and be adored by, I wanted a home and children. I wanted a home teeming with children and I my biggest concern would be their happy upbringing. I met a man, he became my husband and a beautiful baby boy followed. Unfortunately along with my boy came post natal depression. As the boy turned 1 I was waving goodbye to PND and enjoying my life as mum, reveling in everything he did  and looking forward to his next steps. I feel recovered. I do not have PND anymore but I am still trying to get my head around the scars it has left behind. I had planned out my life and if I was following my plan I would have 2 children by now, but my life has changed. For many reasons, not the least being PND, I don’t want anymore children. I am mourning the wonderful life I had dreamed of and must come to terms with the fact that my hopes and dreams have not quite been fulfilled, and probably never will. I must not dwell on the regret I have that I didn’t look down at my beautiful baby and think “you are my beautiful baby” that I will never think that was the most wonderful moment in my life. Those days are over, they’re gone and I can never have them again and I must not dwell on them. I think that, in the most positive way, my boy is enough for me. So I now have to tweak my dream, make plans for what I should do when he goes to school, create a another new typical day, reset my hopes and dreams…

Part 4

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other posts you might like: Revelations  can there be 4