Tag Archives: Mummy

A surprising Hashtag

On Sunday night and Monday morning, a surprising hashtag began trending:

#blamethemuslims

Now, I don’t normally check out hashtags but I’d seen the explanation for this hashtag in my timeline overnight so entered it as a search…

It is full of people saying things like “why is #blamethemuslims trending?” “#blamethemuslims is the most racist thing I’ve seen on twitter” and “don’t #blamethemuslims, #lovethemuslims.”

I had to laugh at the ignorance.  Firstly, the reason the hashtag is trending is because those of you showing “outrage”  at it are hashtagging it, making it statistically more popular. Secondly, I’ve seen a lot more racist and offensive things on twitter.  That is the folly of free speech.  Furthermore I notice that most of the people crying outrage are white and between 16 and 25. Thirdly, the hashtag was started by a MUSLIM WOMAN to bring attention to how quickly the press are to jump to the conclusion that it’s all the fault of the muslims.  The tweets actually “blaming” the muslims are accusing them of doing things like discovering advances in medicine and respecting their women.

Personally, I feel that the outrage criers were the ones turning this hashtag into a negative.  If we are to rid the world of racism, we need to learn not to jump to conclusions and assume that everything we read highlighting a particular race or religion is racist!

The Chain

When my children are not well, I like to pull them to me and hold them close, making sure they can hear my heartbeat.

A mothers heartbeat is an eternal comfort.

When Oscar is restless and will not sleep, I rest his head on my chest and don’t speak, letting him hear the sounds from the womb.

My body branded O before he was born.  The strawberry kiss on the back of his head a reminder he was pressed low in my pelvis for a long while.  But it is his face which is the most telling and fascinates me.  His forehead bears a reddy purple v shape; the shape of my uneven pubic bone.  It will fade.  Maybe not until school age, but it will go.

I love these small things as they link me to my children, prompting me everyday to remember that together we are something wonderful.

Poo, sticks, fircones and clothes pegs

Thursday was a complete write off due to the events on Wednesday night.  I don’t really remember much of what happened.  I do know I got some sleep and felt very nauseous.  And O settled very well in the evening and overnight.

Then we slam into Friday, which for me began at 6.30 when O got up for his feed.  I was still in the feed/wind/change cycle when The Toddler came in and I knew there was no chance I would be going back to sleep.

I got up, got her dressed and gave her a minimal breakfast to stop her stealing my food.  No time to shower as I figured I would do that later.  After my morning nap perhaps.  OH took her to the childminder and I plan my morning.  Well, I say plan.  My days mostly consist of trying to get O settled, napping and maybe blogging.  I had a friend coming over at 1ish to chat and relieve me so I could get some no worry sleep and I didn’t have to think too much about what we would have for dinner or rush to make it as she would be eating at the childminders.

WRONG!

At 10:10 I get a phonecall from the Childminder.  This is NEVER a good thing.

Childminder: I know OH said that she’s better but it’s falling out of her again.

Me: SERIOUSLY?! *sigh*

WTF? Thursday she showed no signs of being ill at all (ok, so we weren’t really awake for a lot of it, but still!) and now this again? Rules are rules though and the Childminder is totally within her rights and contract to send The Toddler home if she feels she is unwell.

Because the offending nappy contained a vile green drippy liquid (it did come home with me but I didn’t look.  In fact, because of the refuse collector strike it’s still in our bin cupboard.  Now tell me how that can be hygienic?)

The Childminder suggested I took her to the Drs, especially as she had showed signs of being in pain when trying to pass whatever it was that was causing her to have diarrhoea for the second time in 3 days.  There were concerns that it may be more sinister than a tummy bug.  I’m pretty sure I will discuss the poo incidents at greater length in another post though so I’m not going to make you accidentally stumble into highly descriptive poo territory here.

I called the Drs surgery to get an urgent appointment for her.  Why do they always ask if it’s urgent? If you say yes, they always tell you they don’t have any available appointments anyway.  I managed to persuade them to give me an End of Surgery jobby where you sit and wait until the Dr is available.  I had to be at the clinic by 11.30 to begin my vigil.

So, I dash to pick madam up after packing sustenance, 15 nappies (I’m not kidding, when she has the poos, she has the POOS!), two extra pairs of trousers and a couple of carrier bags for her to sit on.  I once again expected her to be pale, grumpy and lethargic when I got there but instead she bounds up to me smiling.  She doesn’t look like an ill child. Nothing like an ill child in fact.  I don’t get it, but I was glad I had booked the Drs appointment as maybe they would be able to shed some light on her runny bottom.

I drove straight from the Childminders to the Drs, throwing caution to the wind by not putting any protection on my car seats and had to park half a mile from the surgery.  Well, not exactly half a mile away but far enough to piss me off.  It then took me at least 10 minutes to shoehorn everything into the worlds smallest shopping basket and unload two children, one of whom is repeatedly telling me we are going to see the Dr and actually looking quite excited about it.

When we get to the waiting room, I get the forms to register O as a patient (naughty mummy hadn’t had time to do this) and book her in.  There’s a lovely gent sat next to us who she manages to charm to the point where he gets her a pen when failmummy can’t find the crayons I try to carry everywhere.

We get called in and the Dr pokes and prods her belly which makes her cry, takes her temperature and concludes she’s possibly got a tummy bug but everything is normal.  Come back on Monday if she’s still running.

He then hands her a chocolate biscuit.

We go to the shop opposite and come home for lunch.  She consumes a pot of jelly with vigour.

The afternoon starts to creep by and she clearly does not want to be at home watching CBeebies while mummy is pinned to the sofa by a booby monster.  Said booby monster is annoyed because by making him wait for his lunchtime feed (the Dr called her in right as I was getting him out to latch!) and I was starting to go a bit crazy.  After speaking to mum who couldn’t leave work, I decided to take them out for a walk.  Doesn’t matter where.  Just get them out of the house and doing something.

Obviously, before going anywhere, we have to complete the going out routine, which I will one day tell you all about.  However, it’s enough right to now to just know it takes about an hour with me and two from almost ready.  Including other people and from scratch it takes far far longer.

We set off and she’s starts out in the pushchair but she’s so restless I decide to try and get her to burn off some excess energy by walking.  Cue another “Thing I Have No Idea How We are Going To Do” and I put her reins on.  I find that I can cope quite well between her on reins and steering the Phil & Teds.  This is a good thing.

She finds a stick on the ground.  How many mummies let their kids play with sticks now?  Are we too scared to let our children pick these things up? Are germs now more dangerous than when we were kids and would make mud pies and literally eat worms?

She keeps the stick.  The stick is good.  She also partners it with a twig.  She walks along using the stick as a sort of walking crutch and is twiddling the twig round her fingers when she finds another treasure –

A FIRCONE!! And another one and another one and another one and another one! In fact, there are loads of them.  We are in fircone kingdom and she is Queen.  Fircones are MUCH better than sticks and very soon I have to encourage her to pick the best of her small hoard to take home to show Daddy.  She reminds me that Daddy is at work and we pick out the two most beautifully perfect fircones for him.

We then admire the wildlife we spot down the path – the bees, the wasps and the lady walking the small yappy dog.  She didn’t know that I was heading to the park.  A secret park that had more than just a slide. It has seesaws and a swing.

We spent some time playing at the park until all the kids came out of the local school then she went back in the pushchair, we came home and she, thankfully, slept.

Daddy came home, we had dinner and he went to the shop.  he came back with a present for me.  Clothes pegs.

Now, sticks were good, Fircones were better, but 24..yes TWENTY FOUR plastic clothes pegs? yeah right Mummy, you’re never having these. She has a thing for clothes pegs. She calls them “snap snaps”.

She still has half of them in her shopping bag.

Small children and breastfeeding

I’m not going to do a post about the benefits of breastfeeding for as long as possible.  There are many many many posts and many different opinions about this on the internet.  I’m going to talk about how you explain breastfeeding to other children.  Particularly children that don’t belong to you.

My first experience of this dilemma was when I was still feeding The Toddler.  My friend A had fed her daughter L for 6 weeks and then gone to a bottle.  L is 5 months older than The Toddler, so doesn’t remember the breastfeeding experience at all.  The Toddler was about 1 and I was at their house.  She started giving me feeding cues (pulling at my t-shirt and being very cuddly) so i sat o the floor, got out a boob, she expertly latched on and began to nurse.

L couldn’t get close enough, much to A’s embarrassment.  She wanted to see everything, up close and personal.  I’m not shy about feeding (now) and I don’t believe is hiding my breastfeeding like a bad habit.  If people are curious, I talk to them about it.  If they want to see, let them see (although I haven’t found many adults who are actually curious enough to want to watch the baby latch on and most just pretend I haven’t got my boob out at the dinner table/in the restaurant/at the party.)  A was trying to get her away from the feeding Toddler.  She was obviously intrigued and perhaps began to wonder why she couldn’t have a sample.

I had a similar experience today, although perhaps slightly more surprising.

I was at OHs sisters with Oscar. Some of The Cousins were there.  One Cousin in particular was very interested in the baby.  I have discovered this about young children – they have a innate fascination with babies and feel the need to poke and/or kiss them.  Well, this particular Cousin was no different and decided he wanted to share his dinner with Oscar.

Cousin: “Give the baby a chip?”

OHs BIL: “No, baby doesn’t eat chips”

Cousin: “Give the baby a bean?”

OHs BIL: “Baby is too little for beans. Baby only drinks milk.”

Cousin: “Where’s the milk?”

OHs BIL looks at OHs sister.

“Do you want to explain? It’s a whole different conversation…” He says.

“I think we’ll leave it for now.” She says and Cousin loses interest for long enough for the subject to  be swiftly changed away from my boobs.

This in itself isn’t particularly surprising.  Cousin is 3 and it’s likely that questions about babies and where they come from may have followed.  However, OH’s sister breastfed all four of her children.  She breastfed the 3yo Cousin until he was about 19 months and only stopped because she found out she was pregnant with Baby Cousin.  Baby Cousin was breastfed until he was about 6 months old, so 3yo cousin had been exposed to it.  The issue is how do you explain to a small child that it’s ok for a baby to do this and that the milk is especially tailored for that baby and that it’s not like cows’ milk and can’t be bottled up and served up to everyone?  I know that it is possible to make breast milk donations (I might even blog about my thoughts on this later) but the act of breastfeeding is such an intimate yet open one that it’s hard to explain why one child is allowed to suckle and another may not, especially at that delicate age.

Incidentally, The Toddler hasn’t tried to nurse at all.  I half expected her to try during her regression phase.  I’m not sure whether I would have let her feed, although during engorgement I was tempted as she would have cleared that no problem.  She doesn’t bat en eyelid when I’m currently feeding as she is for more interested in molly-coddling babies than trying to get at my boobies.

What am I?

I’m not a medical professional, a doula, a birthing expert, a breastfeeding expert, a mental health expert or a pareting expert.

I am a mum who is, like all first time mothers, learning as I go along.  I make mistakes, I do some good things.  Everything here is opinion and personal preference.

I’ve had the proud mummy moments and the darkest hours.  I’ve felt the soft glow of love and the burning anger of purest frustration.  I’ve had the regrets and subsequent guilt when something has gone wrong.  All mummies have their moments and I know I’ll have more as my Toddler gets older.

Being a mum is hard.

How did I get here?

OK, so I’ll begin kinda in the middle-ish.

I discovered computers late on.  Worked my butt off to get a couple of qualifications and then a job on a helpdesk.

A few months later, I was promoted.  And then again…and finally I found myself let loose on a bunch of Windows 2003 Servers on a night shift.  Happy happy joy joy.  Or at least it was until 2008 when I was sadly made redundant.  Along with the rest of the team and my partner.  It was crappy.  I would go into the details about the job centre, but they are tedious and boring and quite franklly, I’m over that.

Anyway, Christmas rolls around with all the merriment of drinking too much, smoking too many ciggies…getting up the duff…

I found out I was pregnant with the Toddler on the 28th of December 2008.  Both of us were jobless and signing on.  Both of us hadn’t really expected it to happen as nothing had happened for 18 months or so after trying.   We were due to go and get fertility tested.  This was not the greatest plan in the world.

So, I applied for jobs, just like they tell you to at the Job Centre.  One came up that to be honest, I didn’t really much care for, but in order to fill my quota of applications for the week, I applied.  This happened to be on a helpdesk at The Company.  I didn’t really want to go back to helpdesk and answering the phones, but I was left little choice and when they offered me the job I had to snatch it up and hope something else came along later…

I started the new job then I started having problems in the pregnancy.  Bleeding.  In and out of hospital.  Scans, scares, horrible stuff and very frightening.  But it all turned out well in the end with The Toddler being born on the 29th of August 2009 at 12.15am weighing 6lbs.

Post natal depression followed, along with fears, anxiety, paranoia and problems breastfeeding.   I stuck out the breastfeeding though, until the Toddler was 15 months old!  Go me!

Back to the story – post natal depression was also accompanied by something else – another pregnancy.  Then a blighted ovum, and an operation.  That took some recovering from.  I expect one day I’ll blog properly about that, but now isn’t the time.  I’m not in the right mood to talk about it.

ANYWAY – returned to work, still on the helpdesk and stuck there for all eternity until another pregnancy was discovered on 20th September 2010.  Yippeee…freedom? Well, not really although I’m finally finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.  Hopefully.

The rest will be covered as we go along…