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I Have Never…..

Is it just me, or when you become a Mum you become almost feral in your behaviours? The following may/ may not have been me…..

I have never…..

…….caught my childs poo with my hand rather than let it go on the floor

……..eaten what one thought was a raisin off the floor when in fact it was not……..

…….in the dark depths of the night taken a massive gamble and slid my finger into my childs nappy (rather than turn the light on and wake them up) to see if they have/ have not done a poo. The results are varied

……..had to prise my toddlers willie out of the hands of my baby after protests (on both sides) from my toddler claiming that it was “the babies toy”

…….turned a blind eye to my child eating dog food (pick your battles)

……eaten childs left overs as it was closer to your mouth than the bin

…….eaten childs left overs off the floor purely because you’re feral

………taken refuge in the toilet to eat (stolen from the kids) chocolate

……disposed of potty full of piss in various places including pretty flower beds, underneath cars, beaches, alley ways, gardens and drains outside people’s houses (sorry Helen)

……used various items of clothing (including socks/ own sleeves/ dirty pants) to wipe various forms of baby/ toddler grunge from child

…….been in a situation that has resulted in the dog eating your childs poo……visa-versa

…….left a nappy in the boot of the car for a few days (weeks)

……..used air freshener on child

……..used wets wipes as a legitimate form of cleaning…..on baby puke, shit stains, snot stains, toddler stains in general, dusting, shoe shining, armpit freshening, dog cleansing, window cleaning, toilet dribbles (boys), carpet cleaning, as a replacement washing machine, make up remover, baby teether, cutlery washer, high chair cleaner, shampoo/ conditioner/ dry shampoo, fly squatter and ear cleaner

…….picked my child’s nose and found great satisfaction in doing so

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Things That Are Not Ideal To Do With A Toddler AND Baby

I started writing this a while ago “Things not to do with a toddler”. But now I have a baby, there is a whole different perspective on the matter. Sometimes the logistics just don’t work?!

Get A Filling At The Dentist
Bless my Dad, he had been roped into sitting with the baby and toddler in the waiting room whilst I “nipped” into get a filling. The clock was ticking away, then a panicked text arrived from my dad saying he was caught in traffic. The dentist called me through. He took one look at me, toddler hanging off my legs, baby hanging off my boobs and said “ooh”. Yeh Ohh indeed, there was nothing I could do, they were both just going to have to come in with me. There is nothing worse than being constrained to a chair with your mouth wide open, looking at a peaceful fish painting on the ceiling, whilst hearing your toddler running riot through the dentist draws and pressing buttons on the chair (“wow mummy up”), and your baby crying frantically as you’ve taken him off the boob too soon. Then trying to “shush” and “no don’t touch that” whilst the dentist is sucking the excess spit out of your mouth. Perhaps karma for eating too much chocolate?

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Go To A Gynecoloy Appointment
Another similar medical scenario, but with a different area of the body. I wont go into details, but as the doctor is saying “the more you relax the easier it will go in”, you are trying to access snacks from your bag to stop toddler climbing onto the doctors chair and get “digger” (stethoscope), hearing the keys on the keypad type as he goes (prob accidently perscribing a 2 year old Nicotine Patches). There is nothing more disconcerting than whilst baby is crying (again) the doctor is trying to shush and sing “twinkle twinkle little star” whilst inserting a certain metal instrument into nether regions. Just altogether a weird experience.

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Loose Phone In Foam Pit
My friend and I took 3x toddler plus one baby (mine) to I-Bounce (massive trampoline place with foam pits). We thought “we’ve got this”. And we HAD got it, it was all going swimmingly. No toddlers had been catapulted, not babies had been lost in foam pit (worse than phone??) and we were all pretty stoked with our free (ish) socks. We took it in turns holding the baby (car seat). I had been taking lots of photos (for my Instagram Stories obvs.) and then suddenly realised that my phone wasn’t in my pocket anymore (big gaping open pocket of hoody), it was in fact somewhere in the foam pit. It came down to a choice, concentrate on finding my phone…..or keep track of toddlers/ baby….luckily due to some strapping toddler fathers, we managed to do it all. Everyone pitched in and it wasn’t long before it was made into a fun game for the toddlers/ parents involved. Thank god to a pink glittery phone case, the phone was retrieved from the dark depths of despair and peace was restored. I did feel like a complete DICK, I mean, who takes a phone in a into a foam pit??!

Soft Play
Joyous places. My toddler is at the age/ the type that he wants to go into the soft plays but he wants me to go int with him. Fine if there are others there to hold the baby. A juggle if not. Usually ends up with me carting the baby round with me, taking it in turns to lift toddler/ baby up and through the tower of mesh netting, then crawl through tiny tunnel hooshing baby along on his back, then along wobbly beam holding toddlers hand/ baby clasped awkwardly into boobs, navigating ball pit in similar fashion, finishing up with both of them sitting on my lap to go down the wiggly slide that launches you off into the air (due to weight?!). Next time I’m wearing my gym gear.

Changing Synchronised Poos When You Only Have The Sling
The baby carrier is amazing, I’ve used it so much, way more than the pushchair this time. Leaves your hands free to (control) toddler. But there are certain situations where it just doesn’t work. One of these times I’ve found is if you are out and about and BOTH toddler and baby have pooped. Who do you do first? I’ve tried changing the toddler with the baby in the sling, but just can’t seem to get the right angles and ended up with the toddlers poo covered winky (gets everywhere) smearing a brown patch onto the babies back in the sling. So change the baby first, he comes out of the sling, then where do you put him whilst you change the toddler? Balance on the changing table at same time as toddler change? Do toddler standing up whilst balance baby on changing table (poos are hard do standing up!). I normally end up making a little make shift “cave” on (skanky) toilet floor out of empty sling and backpack to prop the baby up whilst I attend to toddler. Harder now he wriggles more (see photo, not on toilet floor but a reconstruction of events).

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Baby Photo Shoot

The amazing Tara Statton (https://www.tarastattonphotography.com/) has taken some more beautiful photos for us. Thank you SOOOOO much (sorry we had to bribe Arlo with chocolate buttons!). Here are some of my favourite:

 

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The Neglected Second Child

Baths
With my first baby, I lovingly bathed him every night, followed by an all over baby massage, story (totally understood it at 0 years old, but figured he might like the sound of my voice) whilst colourful lights danced across his ceiling in various unicorns and other mythical beasts, synchronised with soothing lullaby music. Most nights I even got in the bath with him so we could bond (there’s nothing better for the mother/baby bonding than seeing your mums postpartum body/ flab and other regions that haven’t been seen/accessed for many months). The whole bath and bedtime thing was just a beautiful experience and I would often wish that perhaps my husband could do this with me every night before bed to help me sleep?!
Second baby, it goes about 3/4….maybe even 5/6 days and we are like “oooo whats that smell??” After checking that we hadn’t left a nappy bag somewhere, the washing hadn’t gone mouldy in the machine (been in there 5 days i think?), something in the fridge hasn’t gone funky, we then realise that in actual fact it is our beautiful little baby. “We should probably bath him tonight then?” we agree. A quick 2 min dip in the bath (often in the toddlers old water) and job done. Its only recently that I’ve started upping his bath times to try to create some sort of bedtime routine to help him sleep (it’s what google says to do….def not working yet).

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General Cleaning
Follows on nicely to baby cleaning. First baby, tiny bit of sick/ poo- change of outfit. Fresh outfit for the morning, evening, bedtime. So many outfit changes. Fresh nappies constantly. So fresh, so clean!
Second baby, wet wipes have been key. You can pretty much keep the same outfit on for 24 hours if you do your wet wiping right. This does mean baby number two essentially goes out in his PJs most days, but you can totally get away with this when you can coo and blow bubbles. And nappies, I hate to say it, but I do forget to change him a lot of the time, or remember, but put it off (not always easy negotiating a toddler diving into the sanitary towel bin whilst you’re trying to hold your baby on the changing table with your foot). Obviously if I hear that familiar “parp” noise and it starts leaking out the side code red situation, I whip that bad boy off. Although, unlike my first, I seem to miss that “poop” noise sometimes (toddler too noisy?) and only discover the littler liquid treasure at a later time. Then feel horrendously guilty as wonder how long its been there. Maybe that’s why you’ve been crying?!
Unfortunately, on one dark and windy autumn day, I actually realised I had run out of baby nappies so had to wing it with a size 5 toddler one (see pic). Poor boy, it was up to his nipples and beyond. Well it was either that or a sanitary pad.

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Clothes
Brings me onto clothes. I was so excited to start dressing my first baby in proper clothes. So I pretty much did this from the start. In fact, I loved it so much I would plan his outfits the night before and get so excited to dress him in them. Lots of clothes were bought, lots of money was spent. I obviously had a lot of time on my hands?!
All of baby number 2s clothes are hand-me-downs (perk of having 2 of the same-sex). This time round, I’m pretty certain my baby will be in baby grows i.e. PJs until he’s 18. Special occasions (like when we might see people), I have started to dress him in actual clothes, but the majority of time he will be in a onesie. There’s just not been enough hours in the day now to plan his cat walk outfits. Poor little chicken, half his baby grows are so small now that he can barely straighten his body out. You WILL stay a newborn forever.

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Wardrobe Space
Baby number 1s (now toddler) wardrobe is extensive. I mean the boy has a double-breasted wardrobe just for his Autumn/ Winter collection (see picture)
Poor baby number 2 has a 3 draw (small-scale) chest of draws next to the huge wardrobe. Nothing like rubbing salt in the wounds. The clothes that can’t fit in the chest of draws live in a bag (Tescos?) in the airing cupboard.

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Attention
I do feel like baby number one had my undivided attention ALL the time. I didn’t get much done at all because I was concentrating on him so much and responding to his every beck and call.
This time round I have a 2 year old that takes up A LOT of my attention, so the poor second baby just seems spend his life plonked in places whilst I sort the toddler out. His day looks like this: propped up on sofa, strapped into swinging chair, moved into bouncy chair…..(bouncy chair is moved from kitchen, to living room, to bedroom. back to kitchen), wedged in Bumbo (chubby thighs), Bumbo relocated to various different places/ views, Sleepy Head (for naps haha yeh right), play gym, car seat (sometimes left in house, placed on sofa or outside for “fresh air”), AND REPEAT. Soon the “Circle of Neglect” ie; the Jumperoo, will come back into action. I feel so guilty that he just kinda gets left and I can’t spend my days just staring at him whilst drinking (hot?) tea.

Used As Entertainment
Baby number 2 is also used as a source of entertainment for the toddler and often treated as a play thing. “Lets see if the baby fits in here” or “lets stick these on the baby” are 2 of the many games we can play that keeps the toddler busy for 10 mins. I also feel like you aren’t as delicate with baby number 2, you realise that these babies are actually quite robust (well he has to be when big brother tries to move him to the play gym all by himself eeeeek). This means that he’s often placed in places for amusement/ funny photos.

Baby Classes
First time round I hammered the s*it out of baby sensory, baby massage, baby gymnastics, bounce and rhyme, baby yoga (didn’t get on well with this), baby swimming…It was crazy busy but felt I NEEDED to do it all for my sons development?!
This time round the logistics of it (can’t take toddler to baby massage/ baby yoga…imagine!) means I cant really do anything specifically for my new baby (mum guilt). So baby number 2 just pretty much tags along to all of my toddlers classes/ social life. BUT I feel he’s almost getting a free ride?! Although not specially for him, already at 3 months old, he gets to attend/ watch/ “absorb” toddler gymnastics, toddler swimming (soon), Forrest School, toddler yoga, soft plays, toddler play dates, farm days, craft classes, tractor rides, crabbing……list goes on……and I get to save some ££££$$$$$

Name Confusion
I never forgot the name of my first son.
Second time round, I’m really struggling to call my baby the correct name……Arlo/ Daddy/ Rich (husband)/ Lottie (dog)/ Jamie (brother)/ Keith (who’s Keith??)…….ahhh whats your name again??! It’s not that its hard to remember, or that I have THAT many more names to remember now, so I can’t understand why I’m struggling so much? I think it’s a lot to do with the tiredness (and age?), I’m just so confused. I basically reel off all of the names I know until I hit on the right one. Plus, he’s never just called his name, he’s known as Baby Kitt. I think he should be Baby Kitt on his birth certificate.

Development
With my first son I was so excited for him to meet each developmental stage (ie. holding head up, rolling over, sitting up, crawling etc). We would even have training sessions.
This time round I’ve realised that actually things become harder when they get bigger (they can move), so I am discouraging any type of development! I want to know what when I plonk him down somewhere, that he’s going to be there when I get back. Plus I want to keep him a baby FOREVER.

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Napping
Child number 1, nap times (like bedtimes) were a serene and peaceful experience.
This time, naps for my baby are on-the-go, normally 20 min power naps in the car seat, or in the sling whilst navigating the ball pit in a soft play, or at home with a xylophone/ hammer/ toy drill being played with next to his head. I’m so sorry.

 

*disclaimer. I love my second baby just as much as my first and don’t mean to “neglect” him. He is very much loved, kept warm, happy, fed and clean (mostly). Weirdly, second baby seems way more laid back.

 

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My Birth Story

Everyone has one, to be honest, this time round mine was pretty normal……almost a beautiful (pahahaha) experience??!

So let me first remind you of Birth Story Round One (Arlo)……pre eclampsia, induction 2 weeks early, couldn’t break waters (4 diff docs tried….eventually had to call doctor with very small/ agile hands), contractions for HOURS, pushing for HOURS, baby got stuck, Ventose, Forceps, baby distressed, rushed to theatre, Emergency Spinal, Episiotomy, one last go with Forceps before C-section…….luckily baby (with brute force) came out. Baby not breathing – rushed off. Haemorrhage, blood transfusion (me), baby jaundice, tongue tie, low blood sugars, problems feeding, over a week in hospital, episiotomy infection….colic, reflux, GERD…..the whole experience was traumatic and definitely put me off having anymore children EVER

However, baby number 2 got in there somehow (!!) and had to come out. Everyone reassured me that another birth couldn’t possibly be as bad as that again??!!

Actually they were right!

So it was 20/7/17, my due date. I wanted a really exciting story ie: my waters broke as I was just about to do a sky dive (pretty sure you can still do these preggers??!!), or, my waters broke when I was in Tescos and I now get free food for life……but at 2.30 pm I was sat on the sofa watching a repeat of Loose Women with my Dad (!!!) and suddenly I said “oh I think my waters have gone”. Went to check, and it was in fact my “show” (soooo gross btw). After googling “can waters trickle out rather than gush”, I established that my waters could slowly be going / or I had lost control of my bladder also. Was pretty gutted I didn’t get the big Hollywood gush (yet), but I knew instantly that things were going to happen TODAY, just had a feeling

Waters/ pee kept trickling, until 10.30pm, I was in bed not sleeping, and I felt a “pop”. I went to the bathroom and WOSH, all my waters went. Instantly I had my first contractions. And it was a big one. They then followed fast furious after that. midwives say you should chill at home first for a bit, but I kinda knew we should get going. Action stations. First things first, mascarra (you never know who you might bump into!). This was very hard to do between contractions. My Dad arrived to look after our 2-year-old, and off we set to the hospital at 11.30pm

Of course my husband would choose the way that has the most speed bumps. Who knew these could be so painful. I just remember driving past loads of Uni students spilling out of the bars, drunk and care free really making me contemplate my life choices. Once we arrived at the hospital, literally took me about 20 mins to get up to the ward, you just cannot walk whilst you are having a contraction

My husbands brilliant idea of “oh we don’t need to call the labour ward, we will just rock up”, meant they weren’t expecting us and we had to go and sit in the waiting room….for 45 mins. I was rolling around on the floor and was sick in the bin. “THIS BABY IS COMING”, I said (yelled??) to my husband and demanded (nicely?) that he had to go and get someone, else this baby was going to start its life next to the bin I was just sick in

Finally a student midwife appeared and took me to a room with a pool. She was so lovely, but couldn’t do anything for me as she wasn’t qualified. I had FULL intentions of taking all the drugs they could give me this time (no need to experience that again). I just remember calling out “help, help, somebody help me” haha. Then “please, send help”….then “please can I have an epidural….I’ve changed my mind, I want a c-section”….then “I don’t want another baby anymore”

And then the noises. I haven’t mentioned these yet. With my first son, I’m not sure how, but I was completely silent. Maybe the occasional “fuck” , but not screaming. This time, oh my, I was SOOOOO loud. But really weird noise. First of all I sounded like a cow, then that morphed into some kind of constipated donkey noise, then into a dying Dinosaur. I couldn’t believe the noises were coming out of me, but there was nothing I could do to stop them.

So far I hadn’t even had a squirt of gas and air. I was stuck in this cycle of constant contractions with no way out, no break in between them and I felt like I was out of control. I actually wanted to shoot myself at this point. Finally a midwife came (she probably heard the donkey noises??). “oh you’re 8 cms already”….no shit! Finally she hooked up the gas and air, once I could control my breathing and had something to bite/scream into I started to feel “better”

Then something really weird happened, my whole body shuddered like a wet dog shaking its fur. My body started to push the baby out all by itself, such an odd feeling. I literally didn’t have to do anything, it was doing it all by itself. The baby was coming!! Maybe it was the lack of drugs but I could feel everything, could actually feel the head moving its way down. It was then I saw the midwives exchange looks and say “lets give Katie a fresh mat”……yes, through feeling everything, I had also felt a little poop slip out. At this point though, I really didn’t care. I wouldn’t have cared if I had farted in their faces to be honest

OOooooh the ring of fire??!! Def hadn’t felt this last time as by the time it had come to this point I had already had an emergency spinal and couldn’t feel anything. oh the burn.

“The heads out” called the midwives…..”is it ginger” I asked??!! No idea why this seemed like the right question to ask at this point, but out it came. The next push/ body shudder it was out…….ITS A BOY!!!! They passed him right up onto my chest where he has stayed pretty much ever since! Freaky bit, like a little mole he kind of scrabbled his way up to my boob for milk. I latched him on and hey presto!! Literally took me 3 months to achieve boob feeding last time.

 

That moment straight after birth when your partner is SOOOO proud of you and in awe of you is the time to strike if you really want something. Bless him, my husband was totally amazed with what I had just done, I’m pretty sure he would have done anything for me…..wish I had had a list ready of things I wanted ie: new shoes, a holiday, a ginger cat etc

So quite a textbook birth really (almost makes want to have more….JOKES), don’t get me wrong, it was VERY VERY intense and crazy painful, almost more so because it was so quick. I did tear pretty bad because of this, so few stitches to glue me back up and I was right as rain again.

I never seem to have this immediate rush of love that most mothers have as soon as their baby is born, maybe I’m in shock/ weird, but the baby just seems like an alien at the start. I do bond about 10 days later, normally have “a moment” of realisation/ love and then the rest is history:)

So there you have it, welcome to the world Kitt Leo Jonas, born at 1.46am on 21/7/17, weighing 7Ibs

Pete the Placenta was born shortly after. Unfortunately my husband accidentally saw Pete, and his words were “I wont be having steak for a while babe”