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And then it was over…..

September 20th, 2013 | Posted by Sara in Being a mum | Little Human | Milestones - (1 Comments)
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And then it was over…..

I’ve written about my breastfeeding relationship with Worm quite a few times. I’ve endured the questions, comments, the support and often accusations that comes with the territory.

Whenever anyone asked me how long would I be feeding for I replied, “Well I’d like to make it to 6 months, then it will be up to Worm” as the time passed my time lines extended….. 12 months, 18 months and then 2 years.

The 2 year milestone was particularly important to me, as the WHO recommends “infants should receive complementary foods with continued breastfeeding up to 2 years of age or beyond” So to think I was giving my child the absolute best start possible was increasingly important to me.

“Breast milk is the natural first food for babies, it provides all the energy and nutrients that the infant needs for the first months of life, and it continues to provide up to half or more of a child’s nutritional needs during the second half of the first year, and up to one-third during the second year of life” source WHO

Breastfeeding a toddler is never easy. There are the boob-robics that happen when the toddler wants to drink and play at the same time.

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The middle of the very public area child pulling your shirt down demanding boobs (granted this photo was only taken 6 weeks ago when we were waiting to see the doctor)

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and of course then there’s the whole wanting boobie to help relax the baby for sleep caper.

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In recent weeks, I’ve felt the pressure to wean more and more…. But the tipping point came when Worm simply refused to sleep. Countless nights of being awake, sharing her bed, or sitting in the hallway trying to hold the door to her room shut has taken its toll.

All of a sudden the lovely evening snuggle became a chore for me – I came to look upon the whole evening routine with dread, thinking to myself ‘why should I persist with this, delaying the inevitable screaming’ I felt like I was simply delaying the torture. To make it worse a few months previously Worm had stopped letting me read a book to her before bed, so that vital part of her development had been cut out of the routine.

Last Friday I was invited to a girls night out with a lovely girlfriend, the catch was that I wouldn’t be home to put Worm to bed and The Farmer was going to do it for me. The few times that I have been away for bedtime we have always re-commenced feeding the very next night, or snuck in a late night feed to make up for skipping the bed time one.

For some reason I felt confident that this was a good time to stop. I went out, I came home to a quietly sleeping house. The Farmer had survived & worm was asleep. Come Saturday I just didn’t offer, Sunday she clawed at my chest asking whilst we were having some early morning cuddles but accepted me saying no quickly.

It’s now Wednesday. My worm is snuggled in behind me in my bed (LONG story involving rowdy neighbours, runaway dogs, febrile toddler & 11.30pm drives in the car -all whilst The Farmer is away again of course!)

When I asked her if she wanted to sleep in mums bed it was an instant yes (I’ll pay for that tomorrow night, but at 12am I wasn’t going to restart that battle) once in bed I was given a kiss & that is all. She hasn’t clawed, she hasn’t asked & she hasn’t jumped all over me.

I’m equal parts saddened & relieved by this. I really loved the bond that feeding gave us, I loved having a super power, and I loved that I gave her the best nutritional start I could.

I’m relieved that my body is once again mine. I can have a guilt free glass of wine. I can (if given the opportunity) go away for a few nights. I’m relieved that she is as happy and as accepting of the new relationship as I am.

But it means that its over….. And Worm is growing up, and that she won’t be my little girl forever……

That bit makes me very very sad.

Worm Turns Two!

July 27th, 2013 | Posted by Sara in Being a mum | Little Human | Milestones - (Comments Off)

Urgh I hate when a pre-written and scheduled blog post heads into the interwebs never to be seen again! Apologies to you all, but this was supposed to be live last Friday!

 

Worm turned 2 on Saturday, I can’t believe that we have had this blessing in our lives for 2 years now. It’s hard to imagine life without her now.

 

The Farmer & I love parties, and what better excuse for a party than a birthday. I decided after the epic 1st birthday last year we would scale it back this year, so we invited some lovely friends for a BBQ & cake.

 

Decorations were simple, some lanterns hanging in our tree outside, some bunting over the door way, I was planning on having a whole bunch of balloons however when the very first one I blew up burst in Worm’s hands she didn’t want them.

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Food was restrained! Cupcakes, and Honey Joys for the kids, little frankferts, dips & cheeses for the adults (of course the kids ended up eating the dips & the adults the honey joys)

 

The cake was a classic Dolly Varden. I used a kuglehoff shaped cake pan to get the dress structure, and then The Farmer and I cut out individual petals in the pre-purchased roll out icing. I was super impressed at how easy the icing was to use, particularly considering the hassle that we went to last year to make our own fondant type icing, I know now what I’ll be using in future!

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The doll was purchased at the recent toy sales, and I had to conduct some minor surgery (amputating at the knees) to get her the right height, so this doll is now back in the cake decorating box for future years.

I actually nearly forgot all about the cake, and so the photos we have of Worm blowing her candles out are not of her in a pretty dress- bur rather of her in striped pyjamas!

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For her present The Farmer & I didn’t want to go overboard, I’m planning on rotating some of her older toys out now she has a couple of new things to play with.

We purchased the Art Easel that attaches onto the Learning Tower, and it was an instant success – as soon as Em walked into the lounge and saw it she grabbed the chalk & started drawing – initially ignoring the large rainbow striped parcel right beside her.

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She certainly has the hang of opening presents now and quickly her attention turned. The Fisher Price Little People Farm set was a HUGE success; I had noticed her playing with one during our recent Tassie adventure, so when we saw the big kit on special it made present purchasing easy.

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Overall I’m claiming the 2nd birthday celebrations a big success, the next day she wanted more bubbles, cake and balloons, so I think she had fun!

 

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1 year 364 days

July 19th, 2013 | Posted by Sara in Being a mum | Little Human | Milestones - (2 Comments)

 

As I sit here writing this I am feeding you for the last time as a 1 year old. I can’t believe that tomorrow you will be 2.

The course of the last two years has been eventful, some times have been easy, some times have been hard, but eventful through out.

The Farmer & have been talking about all the life changes you have experienced, even at your very young age. If changes & events are as character building as your Nana says they are, you my dear Worm are full of character.

You have had 4 homes over the past 2 years, and already moved over 2500km away from your birth town.

Your bike is your favourite, and you cruise up and down our big hallway. The Tour de France has just been on TV, and every night coming home from child care you grabbed the TV remote and said ‘Bikes’ asking me to put them on the TV. You then jumped on your bike and cruised around watching the men tackle the mountains of France.

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If Qantas awarded frequent flyer points for under 2’s you would be a silver flyer already. At one point I intended to keep all your boarding passes for memory, however the pile grew too high too quickly, and I can’t see this ending anytime soon. You, my girl are as comfortable in the air, and in the car as almost every other frequent flyer. You love the attention the air hostess give you, and you also love the opportunities for a sneaky feed from mum at take off & landing.

 

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You have started eating nicely (FINALLY!) and now enjoy helping in the kitchen too. You eat zucchini pasta like its normal, and never complain when mum hides veggies in your mince. You know what the chocolate packet looks like – which always amuses your mummy & daddy as you are rarely allowed to eat from it.

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You can speak and have a very good vocabulary; you can say Mummy, Daddy, Betty & Bronte with ease. You can say the names of your school friends, and carers. However you don’t say your name at all. You certainly know your name though, as whenever we ask who you are you point to yourself, grinning. I believe you can say your name, you just chose not to (that’s part of the character that Nana says you have!)

 

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We take regular trips to the zoo, we are very lucky here to have a community zoo with all kinds of animals. The Chimpanzee and Wombats are your favourite, and we often have to grab you quickly as you try to break into the Kangaroo Park. Your ability to spot the Cassowary’s is far superior to mummy & daddys.

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You love playing with bubbles, and are getting very clever at blowing them yourself, although the giant wands still cause a little trouble when you get excited.

 

 

 

 

 

You love your mama milk, and are not keen to give this up anytime soon. I am constantly astounded by the length of our feeding relationship. It is still one of my favourite activities, big night time cuddles, in the dark of your bedroom. You play with your DeDe ‘lambie”, or Taz the tazzie devil – both of which you sleep with. You stroke my arms, and sometimes play with my hair – mostly gently, although sometimes not so much. I don’t think you realise your strength sometimes.

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Worm I am so proud to be your mummy. Your cheeky grin, and easy laugh light up our home, your daddy & I are having great fun watching you grow and develop into a little human in your own right. Your world is forever expanding in front of you and we adore that with every opportunity you jump into you often look back & make sure we are right there beside you, I often feel that you are pulling us along for the ride.

 

 

Happy Birthday Little Worm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

First School Photo

May 22nd, 2013 | Posted by Sara in Being a mum | Little Human | Milestones - (3 Comments)
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My small human continually amazes me, I had originally planned a post around her developing before my eyes but I’ll share that in the coming weeks.

Tonight I need to share another milestone in her life. The emotion around this one has taken me by surprise. My Worm had her first school photo a few weeks ago.

The Farmer & I were divided as to if we should spend the money purchasing the photo, these things always seem rather expensive, and initially the child care wanted the cash upfront.
I put the call out on the Facebook page thanks to everyone who responded.
I particularly loved my mother comment ‘just buy the photo’.

I was with her for the initial photo session, but the photographer accidentally scared her with a bouncy ball which led to tears. I had to head off to work so I couldn’t stay for the 2nd attempt (which the girls were going to do a little later)

In a way I’m so pleased that I didn’t hang around as when I was handed her photos this afternoon I was genuinely surprised and thrilled with the result. My worm looks so grown up!

So here it is- my Worms firsts school photo. I can’t believe that in a few months she will be 2!

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What’s your thoughts on school photos? Are they a must purchase?

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Over the past few years the birthrate in Australia has boomed and as a result there has been a surge in the number of new parents struggling with PND. I found it VERY hard to talk about my PND, and I wasn’t diagnosed until Worm was nearly 11 months old.

I’ve told my story before, but here it is again, I was a girl who had lived a very busy corporate existence, focusing solely on myself, my hubby and my work.

I was developing into a leader of my organisation, and I relished this role. When I found out I was pregnant I was equal parts elated and shit scared. Worm was certainly planned, and the timing was perfect from a career point of view, I had it all mapped out.

The reality was a little different. The day after I started my maternity leave the Farmer was offered a ‘dream role’ 600kms away, so with a 3 week old baby (who had spent most of that time in the NICU) we packed our home, our life and our dogs to relocate.

All of a sudden I was in a new area, with no family support. The Farmers job quickly turned from the ‘dream role’ that we imagined into a nightmare with him working 16 hour days and all of us struggling into our new roles.

Fast forward 10months, I now had a child who was bottle resistant, she still wasn’t sleeping well, the Farmer had lost his job (and I had given up my pre-maternity leave role just 2 weeks before) it all got too much. I remember one specific occasion driving in the car with Worm speaking to my mother on the phone (hands free of course) when I decided I needed help.

Within a matter of 30 minutes though I had convinced myself that I couldn’t admit a problem as ‘THEY’ would take my child away (yes I realise that this is very irrational thoughts, but that’s what PND and any form of depression really does – I’m actually holding back tears writing this)

If I had been aware of PANDA I could have made a simple phone call to their helpline (1300 726 306). The lovely people there would have been able to tell me that there was no way that ‘THEY” would take my daughter away, but they would have also told me the options and supported me to make the decision to seek support earlier.
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The “Million Mums in May” campaign is launching today. We are calling for all Mums to visit www.millionmums.org.au where you will be able to simply and easily send an e-postcard to their local member of government. The e-postcards will allow your local member to see that PANDA needs additional funding, and Australia families need support.   In addition, if you wish, you will be able to make a one time $1 donation to the work of PANDA. PANDA is the only dedicated national helpline that supports women with post and antenatal depression and in the past 2 years calls to the helpline have increased by 70%.

My situation is not an isolated event, many many new mums are struggling. It doesn’t take all the world to crumble down around you to make you feel like it is actually happening. The funding raised via the Million Mums in May will enable PANDA to extend the helpline to a 24/7 service. This is an exciting goal and a huge need for our community with currently 93 out of 100 struggling mums missing out on vital support.

Please have a look at the infographic below, and head over to http://millionmums.org.au to show your support. There are badges, which we encourage you to display on your twitter, instagram and facebook pages. Show your support of struggling mums.

 

p.s I did eventually seek help, when we went to sleep school with Worm I couldn’t hide it any further. The Farmer and I had spoken and we used the opportunity of sleep school to seek help. Yes my world had literally fallen down around me, and no amount of people acknowledging this & supporting me was going to help – I wanted to keep the smiley confident facade that people know me for. It took me a long time to be able to share my story, and it is still very raw (actually if I had realised how raw I might not have written this today) Please ask yourself “Am I ok?” “Is this normal” and also “Should this be normal” and also ask your friends.

I have been on a very low dose of medication for the past 10 months, and have recently weaned myself off them. I’m doing well now, because I talk about my feelings rather than just going for a run or bottling them inside.

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