Monthly Archives: June 2013

Naughty

My three year old (almost 4, going on 18) is naughty. She’s getting more and more naughty by the day.
The thing is, she’s not the kind of naughty you see other kids being in supermarkets (and of course, my childen are always on their beet behaviour in supermarkets. Toodle pip and bullshit!) but this all-new breed of cleverly twisted naughty.
We get the refusal to follow instructions – all kids do that – but Lily follows it up with a dose of Extreme Stubborn with added Martyr.
For example, as punishment for not cleaning up, we put all of her toys in a black sack to be “taken out with the rubbish.” She was, quite rightly, upset.
Not upset enough to tidy and the threats were soon met with her turning her back on us and saying
‘Just put them in the bin.’
Wait, this wasn’t in the plan.
She’s not supposed to reverse this shit on us.
The toys came back in.
Sigh.
She’s also become very rude.
She tells me to leave and go to my other house. She tells me what to do, counts to three if I don’t do it, lets me know that she dislikes me being here.
I don’t let myself wonder where these choice phrases came from though. There’s only one place.
Me.
Shit.

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Trauma

Oscar’s birth was beautiful.  A wonderful and empowering experience.  There is nothing as womanly as pushing another life out of your body, I think.

So, when Ru was born via an emergency C-section, I expected it to hit me.

The physical recovery has been hard.  I had severe bruising on my abdomen where the Drs had been less than careful with me to get him out quickly.  I also had awful anaemia, which meant my legs were bruised from being moved about on the bed. I narrowly escaped a transfusion.

I couldn’t look at The Wound for two weeks because I felt mutilated, the numbness on my tum a reminder of the scar below it.

Ru’s due date came and I felt a moment of grief for the birth I could have had.  The one that didn’t happen. This was quickly followed by guilt.  Ru is here.  He’s OK.

He’s OK because of me.

I’m not going to go through his birth here. I’ve been asked to do a guest post for a very special friend, which I’ve been putting off with a feeling of dread.  I started it yesterday, got to the bit where we couldn’t find the heartbeat and found that the emotion was physically crippling to the point where I couldn’t continue. I will write it, but I need time to deal with the whole experience.

I also spoke to a health visitor.  She is an ex-midwife and she picked up on the lingering anxiety I have; not so much from the birth itself (the hospital staff and my midwife were exceptional)  but from the events leading up to it and the short time I spent in the hospital before we were rushed to theatre. She’s arranged to keep close contact with me.

I find myself becoming very upset and distressed if anyone mentions reduced fetal movements and I’m having weird flashbacks to the feeling of Ru sliding about in there.

Even thinking about it now has raised my heartrate and I’m sweating, shaking and feel a bit sick.

I didn’t understand birth trauma before, but now I get how these experiences can be life-changing and, in some cases, life-stopping.

And why it can be hard finding the right help.  I didn’t really know where to turn.  I’m a member of birth trauma groups  and I talk about it to anyone who’ll listen.  I can’t write it though.  For some reason, writing it down digs deeper and makes it more real and vivid.

So, I’m plucking up the courage to contact Birth Afterthoughts. .

I’ve found it hard to admit, just like I did when I had PND after L.

I have had a traumatic experience and I’m seeking help.

More than a Bounty of issues

For the last few weeks, there has been a rise in the amount of tweeters discussing the Bounty pack.

Bounty packs are issued initially to put your notes in. They contain magazines, information, but most of all, advertising. Then once you’ve had your baby, a lady comes round to your bed, asks for your details and gives you a newborn pack which contains free samples, a bit more information and another doorstop of advertising. They’ll also send you regular emails about (I assume) products “relevant” to your baby’s stage of development. Personally I filter them to spam. It takes seconds.

So, what has the discussion been about? It seems its been led by a certain blogger website and has its own hashtag. Women are rebelling, Bounty. They no longer want your free stuff, your information, but most of all, they no longer want your advertising. They are horrified and disgusted that your associated companies would see it fit to pitch to their exact audience.

Oh, wait.

Isn’t that what advertising does? Daytime TV is full of quick loan adverts under the assumption that people watching don’t work so will need quick access to money. Google and facebook target ads based on what you view online.  Tweeters and bloggers collect similar people online then post links to their blogs.

This is advertising. Not exploitation.

Maternity services are a mess. There’s no consistent care, which breeds fear. There’s a lack of midwives and maternity units are closing up and down the country meaning women are not getting the care and attention they need, being turned away from hospitals or having conditions missed or misdiagnosed. There are no plans in place to test for Group B Strep as standard, something which could save the lives of babies.

These are things that matter.  Not whether you have a free pot of sudocrem, or if someone emails you with products which might interest you. 6 free pampers aren’t going to save a precious life, one swab could.

You could come home and dump the whole pack in the bin, send emails straight to the delete box, and be done with it. That is if you’re not too traumatised by a midwife you don’t know attending your labour, nipping in and out once an hour because she’s watching three ladies labour across the ward and there are no other midwives available.