In the quieter moments, stroking his soft chubby cheek whilst he’s sleeping, or planting a kiss on on his forehead; I wonder what this life will hold for my little boy. I think of the twists and turns in my own which have led me to this beautiful place; and I imagine the journey he will have. In the noisy moments when he’s grizzly or playing with his jingly lion; I catch myself hoping he’ll be okay … that when he’s an old man, he looks back on a happy life; that I’ll have equipped him with the necessary skills and sense of humour for survival. Most importantly; wrapped him in a love which will never die.. The profundity of the cyclical nature hits me; sometimes I look at my own parents, irrationally surprised that they are getting older – not stuck as a perpetual 50 something. Nothing stays the same … and as I try to treasure every moment with my ever growing baby boy, I am filled with a sense of urgency, an appreciation of Tempus Fugit. Never has the now been so important. This is what I was born to do, or so it feels …
When Freddie and I arrived on the post natal ward thirteen weeks ago, he began to stir a little, and as I was being prodded by a midwife, I couldn’t get to him. I turned to my cousin and said “I don’t want him to cry“. She laughed and reminded me that he was a baby, and that by nature he would cry. I still don’t let my baby boy cry. I pick him up, I cradle him, and if I can’t get to him immediately I explain to him why mummy wasn’t there. It is amazing what you can do one handed. Many people have used the line “rod for own back” – yet for me, there really is such a thing as the fourth trimester. After 9months snuggled in the recesses of my womb, the world must seem so bright and noisy, so huge and alarming; so cold. Babies need the warmth and security of their mothers embrace, the sound of their heartbeat, the knowledge that momma will be there when you cry. This is essentially why I co sleep with Freddie; because I think it’s the natural way. I remember when I worked in Kolkata and would walk past families on the pavement and in the slums, sleeping curled up together. I realise this was out of necessity – yet their family bonds were far greater than most are here. It feels right to me, sharing my bed with my baby; it is certainly easier to feed him at 2am … and he has never had to cry for his milk.
Never did I realise the depths of love and worry that a mother carries around with her.
My Hungry Little Caterpillar
Having the time to blog is now something of a luxury. I’m sitting in bed with my baby beside me, all plump and satiated; having drained the milk of both boobies [and puked the excess down my cleavage and new nursing bra!] THREE WEEKS; how is my baby boy THREE weeks old. Time has taken on a whole new concept in the past weeks; as have day and night … life is simply and wonderfully revolved totally around Little Lord Freddie.
The week hasn’t been without its challenges; last Saturday I found myself at the out of hours GP with mastitis after a sleepless and painful night. Ouch. Serious ouch. It’s also quite hard taking a 2 week old baby to the out of hours unit alone …. whilst they give you a specific appointment, such as 10.47am [really? 10.47?], you still have to wait 2hours to be seen, during which you need to feed baby several times through agonising pain … and realise you need to change a pooey bottom but don’t want to lose your place in the queue. Fred and I were both most relieved when the prescription was printed and we could go home chomping on the antibbiotics. I very nearly joined him in the wailing. Aside from a sniffly nose, I’m feeling much better and the boobies aren’t sore anymore [thank goodness!] Incidentally I did find it funny that the doctor asked if there was any chance I could be preggers … erm, NO.
Breastfeeding is amazing … despite the mastitis … I find it the most nurturing thing you can do for your baby. I feel like the 9months he was in my tummy, I sustained him through my food and the placenta … and now he’s here, I can carry on nurturing him. The unbilical cord may have been cut, but Momma’s milk can feed him. And feed him well, as he weighed in at 9Ib this week! I can definitely tell he’s put on weight …. getting heavier to carry up the stairs in his car seat!
As for the lady bits, I actually braved taking a mirror to the brutalised bits, and [continued several hours later; baby and momma now fed and changed and ready to face the day!] – anyway, ladybits – not as mashed as I thought. Looking quite normal. The human body really IS amazing.
Still, in the small hours when I look at Freddie beside me; I wonder how on earth I created anything so perfect … and ow wonderful the world is with him in it. He’s mine, he’s really my baby boy …..
It has been 5 days since little Fredders entered the world, and yet I can no longer remember a life without him in it. People say there is no love like the love of a mother … but until you have your precious warm squishy bundle in your arms, you cannot comprehend it. Your purpose in life is suddenly gravitated around the little piece of perfection you grew in your womb. Observations from a 5 days post partum momma [no stigmas barred]
1. After spending a great deal of time whilst in the birthing pool declaring that I was going to poo and that it felt like Freddie was coming out of the wrong hole, one of my biggest fears post delivery was the inevitable first poo. I’m relieved to report that my insides didn’t fall out when it happened …
2. People don’t really talk much about bleeding after childbirth; in fact I was quite horrified at the one birthing class when it was suggested we buy maternity pads. Why? I’d asked innocently. Oh boy, now I know. I had a mild panic attack at what seemed to be an enormous piece of womb which emerged one day, and yet was reassured that practically, to quote a friend, if it isn’t as large as your fist, you’ll be okay. The human body really IS incredible [still alive]
3. Your breasts suddenly inflate within a matter of hours on the day your milk comes in. Woah. I mean, seriously! When people said I may leak a little bit, I imagined the odd drop – not to be walking around as if I’d poured a pint down my pyjama top. That said, breast feeding is THE best feeling, so I can totally deal with the sore nips. Natural coconut oil is proving a god send …
4. Throughout my pregnancy I craved steak and glasses of cold milk. I can’t bear the thought of either one now …
5. Not getting round to cleaning your teeth until 3pm is totally acceptable
6. Little boys willies have a good spray on them, especially when changing a nappy!! Poor Fredders got himself in the eye one day, and my glasses got a good spray the next!
BEST JOB IN THE WORLD.
Talking of which, Master Freddie is stirring, so it must be time for some boob-juice. More snippets soon ….