The New Job: Moving On

I have worked at People First for ages. I really mean ages. Almost 13 years solid, but nearer 18 years on the cards if you include the on and off part at the start!!

Before I worked at People First I was involved through my mum, attending fundraising events, Disco’s and memorably visiting the mayor’s parlour!

I first started working a few hours a week during the summer of 2000, supporting the company secretary with group session minutes and planning 3 days per week. We did lots of prep, and lots of coordination, from a little office on Finkle Street in Carlisle.

I was just out of completing my GCSE exams, and it was my first experience of the regular 9-5 office life, but it was nothing like ordinary. People First has always been unique place to work.

I continues after the summer with People First, not continuously, but helping out during school holidays in particular. I remember one memorable christmas break spent sorting archiving the company accounts and employment information. That was a LOT of paperwork.

While I had never intended to work there full time, life took its course and after I completed my degree at University there was a space for a budding historian to co-lead a Wartime Memories project, which I couldn’t resist. Circumstances (beyond my control) meant that within two years I had gone from part-time co-researcher to Advocacy Team Manager (North).

This post slowly developed, with the help of new contracts, structures, projects and restructure processes to be the Business Development Manager post I have just left.

I have had the opportunity to learn about managing people and resources, budget control, resructure(s), leadership styles, funding, tendering, business planning and much more Whilst I haven’t come out of this with qualifications to match my skills, it has definitely shaped the person I have become.

I am excited for my new role, and unsurprisingly anxious to see if the change will offer me further opportunities to grow and learn. I’m grateful for the time I have had at People First. Next step.

“Mom Guilt”: Leveller?

I had a quick conversation with a good friend last night, and it occurred to me that the “Mom Guilt” we were both discussing feeling was might actually just be an inevitable part of parenting.

Mom Guilt is for my purposes, defined as that feeling you get when you feel like whatever it is that you’re doing as a parent, it’s not the best you ‘could’ be doing. Henceforth referred to as ‘The Guilt’.

A quick Google shows lots of advice on how to Overcome Mom Guilt or how to Deal with it…. I did, in fairness recently read a good article by Scary Mommy which you should check out but even that missed a key point for me:

The experience of ‘The Guilt’ is a great leveller.

You could be a working mom, with guilt for being at work ALL THE TIME (….. side-eyes self)

You could be a mom battling a chronic illness every day getting the guilt about not being as active with the kids as you would like to be.

You could be a stay at home mom with really high cleanliness standards getting guilt about cleaning over playing sofa forts.

She’s happy with the grapes bowl…… or is she?!

You could be a dad who plays football at the weekend and have guilt about missing ‘Quality Time’ with the family

You could be a parent of a child who is in an ethnic minority, getting guilt about the experiences which come with being in that minority position.

You could be a parent of more than one kid, getting guilt about being with one of them more than another (even though the older one didn’t even want to be with you that day, they wanted to play with their mates!)

You could be anyone.

‘The Guilt’ can strike at any time. I was home today, on toil so my hubs could work, and I had the Guilt that I hadn’t planned a wonderful day for the children. Which is mental, because I haven’t been sleeping, so the thought that I should have done anything other than the absolute basics in this week to date. Well. Really. (See that Scary Mommy article….)

What’s amazing is we all think our experience of this Guilt is an experience in isolation. But it’s so not. Even if I wasn’t working, and I was home with the kids, and we were comfortable with our finances, there would ALWAYS be more that I could be doing with or for them…

And that, THAT feeling. Well, for me, and probably for you, that’s parenting encapsulated.

An unexpected journey: Oscha Middle Earth Collectors

My journey with woven wraps began way back in 2016.

Carlisle Sling Library

I had my first wrapping experience in the Sands Centre Cafe at a Carlisle Sling Library slingmeet. I wrapped with a size 6 woven wrap, a Librarian I think it was called, under the expert guidance of Jo Hymers, slingy consultant extraordinaire.

My first ever front wrap cross carry! Fispi shared this on their Instagram. I’m totally famous.

The Fispi was their unmistakably soft smooshy cotton. No carrier had ever been so comfortable, and the challenge of learning to wrap pressed all my buttons!!

It escalated quickly. I learned that some woven wraps were known as ‘Legacy’ wraps – one interpretation of this is a wrap which is released on the day of your child’s birth. (Check out the Slingofest Catalogue to find out your legacies) and discovered beautiful legacy wraps for both my son, and my daughter. My son’s wraps was Natibaby Magic Carbo, swiftly found with some more experienced help!

Natibaby Magic Carbo (Size 7) carrying my gorgeous son Nathaniel.

My daughter’s wrap was Oscha Sekai Loxley. A stunning release. I had to have it. I followed everything Oscha to find it. It arrived later. But by then, I was hooked.

Oscha Sekai Loxley (Size 8) carrying my daughter Skye

Oscha really do make some beautiful wraps.

Not long after I returned to work following my maternity leave in late 2016, I learned that Oscha were planning to release an officially licensed Middle Earth Collection.

Oscha’s teaser for the Middle Earth Collection on Instagram

Oh. Em. Gee.

For those not in the know, Middle Earth is a world created by J.R.R. Tolkien. It is a world, not a story. An incredible feat. A fully formed alternative history, written by an Oxford professor of languages and history. I studied Tolkien’s scholarly works whilst writing my BA dissertation. The thought of the marriage of two of my loves, Middle Earth and Babywearing… Well. Sold.

Oscha Middle Earth Collection logo – utilising languages created by Tolkien

I’m still not quite sure how it happened, but I decided to set up a fan group for the collection, to share my excitement with other people who wanted to geek out over the technicalities of the actual designs. I managed to rope in two other Carlisle Sling Library folk, Helen Tuck and Sally Fox.

Right at the start!
Helen looking very pleased with herself at the Northern Sling Exhibition 2017
The lovely Sally at the Northern Sling Exhibition.

Later Pauline Jennings and Gretchen Carson joined to offer their experience in running such groups. I am forever grateful for their support in sharing the journey!

You can come and join us in the group if you like: ‘Oscha Middle Earth Collectors’

It’s been a wild ride… First came Ancients of Gondor, a classic pattern in a monochrome colourway – Oscha knocked it out of the park!

Ancients of Gondor Instagram Teaser by Oscha

This was swiftly followed by Misty Mountains, based on Tolkien’s own drawings, then The Shire…. There have been many more; Galadriel, Evenstar, Rings of Power, Smaug, Rohan, Doors of Durin, Oakenshield, Frodo, Mithril, Hobbiton, “Map” (as yet officially unnamed) and we know of more to come… Not least Rivendell (which Oscha worked with our group to choose the next pattern for development) – I’m almost certain I have missed a pattern or two here!!

The excitement is still present. The group had grown massively from the original members, we now have close to 3000 members, totally diverse, from all corners of the globe. We have run two custom preorders – Celebdil/Silvertine and the Legend of Frodo (latterly the Map Takeover!)

Oscha Middle Earth Collectors first Preorder, Celebdil and Silvertine 😍
Legend of Frodo Preorder, our second, latterly the “Map” takeover….

We run several group photo albums, offer translations of Tolkien’s languages as they relate to the Oscha releases, gathering information about the releases and support buying selling and trading Middle Earth Collection items within the group.

My Babywearing journey is almost ready to cross into the west, with my children submitting to being wrapped rarely these days. But the journey for the group continues.

At the Carlisle Sling Library Xmas party 2016 with Galadriel Mallorn. See, most useful things these slings.

The True Cost of Austerity?

I wonder. I wonder if the true cost of austerity ought really to be measured in time.

There is now less time to be spent.

The process of undertaking the austerity programme, as I understand it, was to right the economic car crash, the crushing debt that despite our countries overall wealth and privilege we have somehow managed to accumulate over the years. As I understand it, the premise was, “We need to spend less” (was that David Cameron’s voice echoing in the background?)

So that was what government have done. System wide cuts to the funding available for services, both beneficial and statutory. Less money for Local Authorities to provide services for, and to people.

And we have seen that – there are less social workers, who have more people to work with (I’d say caseload, but you know… people are people not cases), less beds available in hospitals, fewer nurses, fewer nurses, fewer shop assistants and shops.

And yet, the demand for these services continues to rise, so what is left is not only hounded by the demand to “spend less”, but also constrained by ever increasing demand for support and help. So there is in practical terms, even LESS time.

So time becomes currency. And we start the answer to every “how are you?” Question with “Busy”. And then busy-ness is accepted as the norm and is judges by others. But at what point will the actual issue be addressed? I wonder.

*I am not actually suggesting that the passage of time is altered in some physics kind of way, but more that our experience of time is that there is less of it. Just you know, for clarity.

Clementine and I

Twice now specifically, I have had to do some work recently about financial structure and future plans of the company I work for.

We have to save money. As most 3rd sector organisations do in the current times.

Back in 2014 I worked with John Gray, and we jointly developed a new financial model for the company, affectionately called Clementine. I stand by the principle though in practice we have found some elements more challenging than others to implement.

It’s pretty simple. I’m sure we’re not the first. Though I have not seen another the same. It is most useful in terms obtaining, and keeping our projects both dynamic and functional as part of the whole.

And therein lies the next challenge, keeping  it ‘clean’ in its application.

Holiday to Newquay

Woohoo! Holiday time!

Day 1

Epic 10 hour car journey to Plymouth. Nathan mostly well behaved, slept much. Liked high chair to share dining table with me mum and Casey at lunch. Met Tank who had travelled on the train once we got to Plymouth.

image

Sleepy baby in the car near Preston.

image

Sharing the lunch table.

We stayed at Nanny Freda and Grandad Reg’s house in Plymstock. All slept well and excited for the coming holiday.

Day 2

Woke up in Plymouth, Tank had his now tradition breakfast of bananas on toast, a wee bit of chat with the olds and then back in the car (and Tank on the train) to Newquay.

image

image

More sleeping for Nathaniel.

image

Over the Tamar bridge into Cornwall.

Tank’s train was delayed but he made it eventually. We’d got settled into the Travelodge and then went for Nathan’s first trip to the beach! Nathan saw a starfish and paddled in the big blue.

image

image

This is Great Western beach, though I prefer it’s old name, Towan Blystra. You can see our hotel in the picture, with the Aldi sign on it.

image

We then got sorted to go for a wetherspoons tea, and had a short walk around the town and back down the old train track path which brings us right back to the Travelodge.

image

Day 3

Woke up to rain. The hotel room overnight was hotter than the sun so we were expecting glorious sunshine, supposed to get better in the afternoon. Fingers crossed.

Breakfast at Towan Blystra, cheap and cheerful. Then a bit of food shopping and off into town for crab lines and bait.

Stopped for lunch looking out to sea, fed some little birds (starlings?) part of my lunch which Nathaniel was in raptures over!

image

Tide too far out for crabbing so went off to the beach for a swim. Beautiful sunshine by now!

Nathan enjoyed experiencing the sand….
image

image

Then had his first boobie juice on the beach session, and then napped! Oh a babies life!

image

image

We all had a swim, and then back for takeaway tea, yummy Indian for us, Chinese for Casey, and 1p bananas in Tesco express.

image

image

Day 3

Today we awoke to glorious sunshine and after a swift brekkie jumped in the car to head to Perranporth.

image

image

The sun was shining and the sea was looking inviting. After we arrived Casey and Tank went for a bodyboard, reporting back the waves were not good for surfing because of the currents but the sea was good fun!

image

After plenty of lazing about, salads for lunch and nattering, Nathaniel had some lunch and boobie juice and a post food nap so Mum and I went for a swim in some of the strongest rip currents I have felt for ages. Good fun, ran away from a jellyfish.

Nathan met lots of pooches and little children on his sea paddle trip with Nanny.

Before we left there Tank and I took Nathan sightseeing in the cliffs.

image

image

We had domino’s pizza for tea, overlooking Great Western Beach at night time. Beautiful day.

Day 4

We awoke once again to fantastic sunshine! Tank was keen to go crabbing. So we got up and headed out asap to get to the harbour for high tide around 11am.

image

It was glorious sunshine so we looked to keep Nathan in the shade. After 30 mins of unsuccessful crabbing with crab lines with bait bags on the end we gave up and went to a bait shop to buy a crabbing net we had seen another bloke using (on his recommendation).
image

We went down back to the harbour, but this time on the South Quay and had much more luck, (1 boobie juice) 12 shrimp and 4 crabs in about 1 hour!

image

image
Nathan was very excited by the crabs!

image

We left as we were getting too hot and Nathan was getting bored and went for lunch with Nanny Rohhss is a cafe in central Newquay, ‘Martha’s’. Tank had some Newquay crab for lunch!!!

image

After lunch we wandered back up to the hotel, grabbed our beach gear and headed to Great Western Beach again for an afternoon swim.

image

A quick icecream was followed by playing on the beach.

image

image

And then paddling in the sea with Mummy.

image

And with Daddy!

image

Nanny and Nathan played with Uncle Casey while we got a swim in the lovely sea together! It was lovely and warm. Then nipped to Wetherspoons for tea and back to the Travelodge all knackered after a busy day. 🙂

Day 5

Glorious day once more, up and about late morning and wandered through town to head to Fistral bay for the Day. Good nosey in the shops on the way, quick lunch in Sainsbury’s on route and then setting up on the beach.

Tide was fully in when we arrived and Fistral is a steep beach at the top so we held off going in for a swim till a little later when the tide had dropped.
image

Nathan really enjoyed the sea today, he was anticipating the waves coming when he was playing on the shoreline and jumping to his feet to save from getting a cold bum from the sea water!

We all swam for a long time, as it was too hot to sit on the beach too long sunbathing.

DSC_7316

After the beach, where we spent the most part of the day we wandered back through town.

DSC_7317

We played with the giant steel ball fountain.

We then went for dinner at Wah Ching Chinese restaurant in North Newquay. The food was incredible!

Back to the hotel to bath Nathaniel after his seaside adventures and get pajamas on.

DSC_7279

Tank and I took him for a little outing to the clifftop to look over the beach. Lots of cuddles, amazing views, boobie juice, more cuddles, bouncing and games and then back to the hotel via burger king for a little ice cream pot.

image

Stopped in to Nanny Rohhss’s room for cuddles and games and then off to bed.

A brilliant day.

Day 6

Final day in Newquay today, up bright and early to pack ready for leaving. We had a breakfast at Towan Blystra again and then packed the car as we had to checkout by 12noon.

After the car was packed we headed straight to the Great Western beach to make to most of the seaside before we travel back to Plymouth.

DSC_7340

The tide was right in, we got in for a swim early on. Nathan played with the waves in his birthday suit, and then we sunbathed.

We collected some shells for back at home. Mum bought lunch so we ate that, and did some beachcombing.

We got back in while Nathan was having a nap, for a second and final sea swim.

Then it was a quick pack up and get sorted and back in the car/on the train to Plymouth.

When we arrived Nanny and Grandad made a cuppa, we chatted and then bathed and bed.

DSC_7372

DSC_7376

Day 7

Woke up to a cool day in Plymouth, the sea mist was over the city, though it was quickly burned off by a hot sun.

Grandad treated us to a carvery lunch in Elburton at The Ship. After lunch we went into town, mum and Casey did some browsing and then went to the Hoe for icecream.

Tank and I met his cousin Lee at the sundial and went for a couple of cups of coffee in a Barista Brothers coffee house.

I had never met Lee before so it was great to put a face to the name. Tank had only been back in touch with him a week before our visit, so his meet up off the train on the way down was the first time in 17 years they had seen one another.

We popped out to Bovisands after meeting Lee, but it has to be said the back couldnt live up to the standards we had come to expect in Cornwall. Still, Nathaniel had a quick dip, he couldnt wait to get into the sea. More ice-cream too!

DSC_7359

We visited the Linterns after we had been back to Nanny and Grandad’s house for sandwiches for tea.

Emma, Keith and Jenny were all in. We spoke about Nathan and caught up on the latest family goings on. Toby had only recently had his First birthday party at Ascot, and little Joe was in Wales with Nicky and Tracy visiting her mum.

Day 8

Home time. Long journey back home.

image

10 hours in the car and we were glad to get back.
image

Tank travelled back on the train, so he was really pleased to see Nathaniel after so long.

Reunited with our doggies, holiday over and on to the giant washing pile!!!

Indecision

You know when you have a date to do something by? You will also know that the date always arrives sooner than expected.

Moving Forwards

“By staying on the platform of indecision we automatically give our power and peace to the circumstance at hand.”

I read this today.

I am a terribly indecisive person. And I do not use the term terribly, lightly. This post resonated for me as I am starting to understand that my indecisive nature can lead me to choices I would rather not have taken.

“I have always been very indecisive and this usually led to procrastination. When you are indecisive it’s usually because you have some sort of anxiety about making the wrong decision. How about taking a step back and examining why you feeling anxious. Is this anxiety related to the fear of something happening or is it a warning prompted by our inner man not to proceed. Whenever fear and confusion step in remember to evaluate instead of retreat.

In some instances we are required to standstill for the battle is not ours, but there are times when you have to actively choose to make the right decisions in order to yield certain results. It may not always immediately be clear what decision to take but once we get the confirmation / information related to it, we are to act in accordance. Hoping that things would be different does not cause them to be different. It takes our active participation.” – So this is me. But why?

I am not indecisive in my working life. Making decisions about projects I am working on, programmes of events, and funding comes very easily. A little too easily sometimes, I find myself holding back to enable others to have their say and make their point. But I am seemingly unable to transfer this into my own life.

‘Note to self: make a decision and move on. Don’t waste precious time questioning if it was the right one’

So I’m going to make a positive change. I have decided to decide more.

Routine, to lead or follow…

Most common question I am asked lately:

‘so, do you have him settled into a routine yet then?’

Worst. Question. Ever.

Do I have him in a routine? Should I? Am I doing it wrong? Oh my god I’m damaging him…. No I’m not…. Is he old enough for a routine? What routine should we have anyway?

So I did what all new mother’s do (I assume) and I googled it.

Big. Mistake.

Talk about wading into a wasps nest. There are 2 clear camps (and many between)- those which recommend the imposition of routine, and those who recommend baby-led reactive patterns. And it feels like you have to choose one. So I started to weigh up the pro’s and the con’s of both methods.

image

I had so many questions, and none of them seemed to have an answer.
1) Is Nathaniel, at 5 week’s old when the question first reared its ugly head, aware of night and day?
2) Is Nathaniel in need of a routine in order to develop/feel loved/avoid irreversible future damages?
3) What routine should we follow if we were to impose one? And how long would adjustment take?
4) Did we care? Did we want Nathaniel to have a routine? Was it really necessary? And after all, does he not need what he needs at the time he is asking for it? He’s not, we assume, self aware enough to be making delay decisions for food and comfort, surely…

Anyway. Following several days of decision-making between Tank and I, and then finally several weeks of letting Nathan ‘tell us if he needed it’ (not literally), we realised that he was developing his own patterns. Not a ‘routine’ as such. But definitely some sort of repetition.

image

And that’s okay! Nathan, you can lead, and we’ll follow!! But 5 weeks was still too soon for that question….

Ps. My answers to the questions we asked above:
1) No, surely he wouldn’t be so cruel to wake me every day at 2,4 and 6am if he knew that was night-time, would he?!
2) No, not at 5 week’s, or 10 weeks, but in the future yes. To be decided upon at the time.
3)Who knows, and too long.
4)No, cue parental guilt, but safe knowledge that he’s getting what he needs when he needs it!

Pregnancy, Labour, Birth and Afterwards….

image

This is me in labour. It’s not how I thought I would look. It’s not how I wanted to look. But that’s hindsight…. At the time I really didn’t care!

My pregnancy was very smooth. I was incredibly lucky. I was sure (being pessimistic) that the trials and tribulations of getting pregnant in the first place could only really be followed up by a difficult pregnancy. There is a small amount of logic hiding in there somewhere, I think….

However, that’s not how it happened. I got a little morning sickness, which turned up at night times, making it easy to manage (read ‘hide’). That was from about week 11 until around week 14 sometime. And that was about it. It got a little difficult to sleep come the last couple of weeks, and I had slight backache getting into bed at night. That was it!

But Mouse was late. I think I knew all along that would be the case…. But you can’t help but get the due date stuck in your head, you work towards it for so long after all. I was happy to still be pregnant. I wasn’t uncomfortable or fed up, I was actually loving being pregnant!

image

I think I actually did get to the stage where I think I wanted to stay preggo for longer more than I wanted to have the baby. Labour was scary. On the other hand being preggo had become familiar and safe. It was exciting and exhilarating. It was the ultimate state of anticipation. And I wanted to keep it that way.

Inevitably of course I went into labour. Tank awoke next to me in the morning. He had had a dream about me having the baby. He said he dreamt that we had had the baby, that it was a boy, that he weighed 8lb 5oz, and he was called Morgan. And he had a mop of dark hair. I had been having slight pains for an hour or so, it was about 5am, so I responded with ‘that’s great, now do you want to start timing these pains for me? I might be in labour….’ I think Tank was pretty surprised.

I had pains until about 9am, and then told Mum, and rang the labour ward for some advice. They asked me to come in to be checked over, so we headed in around 10am ish…. After a quick blood pressure check and a once over we were sent back home as expected. The position I found the best to manage the pains was on my knees on the couch, leaning over the arm. The contractions were getting increasingly painful but I was still able to talk through them.

I remember this changing around 5pm. It quite quickly went from manageable pain to much less manageable. The maternity ward had said to call them when things changed, or if we had any concerns. So another call and we were invited back in to be checked over.

The car journey was horrifically uncomfortable. Wrong position and confined space. Probably the most memorably horrible contractions i have experienced. After what felt like a year in the car we reached the hospital and after waddling in was checked on a busy ward. 2.5cm dialated but could stretch to 3. The Midwife on duty explained that I couldn’t be admitted until 3cm dilated, and that there was no bed at present anyway (no room at the inn… But don’t panic?!?) so I was best going home again. The thought of the car journey terrified me. I don’t know what mum said when she left the room to speak to the Midwife but when she came back in she offered that I could just get in the bath on the ward as long as we didn’t mind having no bed to leave stuff with.

This sounded perfect. A bath and no car journey. Perfect.

As I got in the bath, having clearly lost my worries about nudity, mum and Tank and I chatted, then Tank went with my Dad who had turned up and went to find food. I don’t know how long we were in that bathroom, maybe an hour or more.

When I came out of the bath I was checked again and informed I was 4cm and was admitted. I had no shame walking around to the labour ward in just a t-shirt and trainers….and throwing myself on the floor leaning on a chair.

It all gets a bit fuzzy from here. With moments of utter clarity. I remember the pain of having the cannula badly inserted into my hand, removed and badly done again. I remember sending someone to get, and subsequently having a very refreshing orange calippo ice lolly. I remember the relief from the diamorphine kicking in… I thought following this that I would be really good at crossword puzzles (untested) that “I totally ‘get’ trainspotting (the movie) now”. When Chris the assigned Midwife asked me to describe what I felt like down below, the morphine led to the accurate but interesting statement from me that “it feels like I have pomegranates up my fanny”.

I don’t remember feeling like I needed to push, I just remember feeling the painkillers running out before I did! What felt like 2 mins of pushing, though was probably much longer in the non-morphine addled real world, Tank said he could see a head, and hair when I pushed.

With his encouragement I pushed until Mouse crowned and then with the most pain I have ever experienced, or likely will again, the head was out. But the next contraction I was supposed to be pushing the rest of the baby out with didn’t come. Sensing the panic rising in the room everyone urged me to push without the contraction. The baby needed to come out now. Much effort resulted in Mouse being born at 02.49am on 20.12.2013. It’s a boy!!!

image

He was placed on my chest for a moment while the cord was cut by Tank. It was overwhelming. So much so that the word overwhelming is nowhere near to descriptive enough. The wave of emotion in the room was quite incredible.

And then Mouse was whisked away for oxygen.

I panicked, and was then distracted by birthing the placenta, and lots of quick activity, I needed lots of stitches in several places… I later discovered that the rush was because I was loosing lots of blood. The stitches mainly didn’t hurt, I had local anaesthetic injected but a couple were incredibly painful. Once finished my thoughts focussed on my baby once more.

Pessimism and fear led me to ask if he was alive. I started to panic as they tried to placate me with platitudes, just add I sent Tank to find Mouse he was brought back into the room. I was aching for him, and terrified of him. I was proud of him.

We had a baby boy….

image

Tank cuddled him skin to skin, and then I did the same.

image

Once everyone had filed off home and to sleep, I was offered a shower, which was horribly bloody (which is a graphically controlled mega understatement) but put clean pajamas on, and had the bed cleaned and new bedding. Christine, the midwife, who was fantastic, then spent two or more hours with me trying to get mouse to latch on for his first feed. Despite Chris’s fantastic support and encouragement I wasn’t able to do it, and after being assured it was okay I slept briefly. Tank then came back which was great, I really needed him around.

I was kept in because of the blood loss while the doctors decided on a treatment plan, and then we stayed in a few more days as mouse got jaundice. He had lots of expressed colostrum, lots of time at the breast, and 28 hours under the bililights and recovered very quickly.

image

We thought we’d be in for 7 days and he managed to recover in 3 days. I am very proud of the fact his recovery at such speed was due, according to the midwives, to the quality and volume of colostrum I was able to produce.

After 4 days Mouse had a name, and we were desperate to get him home for Christmas.

But going home was scary, I had got settled in hospital and had expert support on tap, literally at the push of a button…. Home was disorganised and felt isolated, but it was also great to get back into my own bed in our own house. Mouse’s first Christmas, was against all odds, spent at home!!

image

image