Oliver update

I’ve realised that I’ve been quiet for over a month.

For a change it’s purely down to us being busy in a positive way. No hospital stays, no real Oliver stress. Just being busy.

Since the last time I wrote, Olivers seizures seem to have stopped. The fear of a phone call from nursery or family has reduced (unfortunately I think it will always be a worry) But it would appear his medication is now at the right level and keeping him balanced. We make sure that his baby Jebba has her medicine too and anyone else who’s to hand during medicine time

I’ve been spending Monday afternoons on a Hanen course. To help aid my communication with Oliver. Although he makes noise (and plenty of it) we’ve still not got any clear speech. So being able to help nudge him in the right direction is really important. There’s a number of things I didn’t realise he was doing until I slowed down and brought myself down to his level.

We have had a bit of a surprise and the chesty noise that anyone who’s met him can always hear. For those that haven’t he ALWAYS sounds like he needs to cough or clear his throat. Well SALT (speech and language) think that it may be due to a bit of aspiration so he’s now been given something to thicken all of his drinks and it seems to have helped. We can tell the days where we’ve skipped the thickener due to one reason or another. So hopefully we’ve sorted that before too much damage has been done.

Our signing has improved massively. I don’t know if it’s due to the course and me paying more attention and looking for different things or just the he’s had another leap in understanding but I now have a good idea almost all of the time what he’s after with minimal frustration.

If it was a leap then it would explain his eating habits. Feeding Oliver is a continuous stress. It’s the only part of his condition that we worry about and if he was a ‘normal’ two year old I’d put the fact he’s eating anything and everything and demanding food/having hissy fits when we won’t share, down to him being two. I honestly believe that’s exactly what’s happening. His legs have stretched out that’s for sure and cognitively he’s improving so it’s got to be why he wants the extra bits, but there’s still that tiny niggle at the back of my head that the reason he wants to eat is due to the switch in his brain no longer working.

Last week we did another ‘2 year review’ to see where we are and how we’re doing. We then did the 20 month review after ‘failing’ the other one. The only area he’s not keeping up with is gross motor skills. He can do pretty much everything a 20 month old can do skill and speech wise (or at least to some degree) but gross motor skills (physical movement) he’s in the black, not even in the grey. Which I’m ok with (I regularly have to repeat this to myself) because I am ok with it. We knew he wouldn’t be walking by the time he was two like most kids are. I think sometimes having it put down in black and white makes it just that bit harder.

The two year review was in prep for a multiagency meeting that’s happening at the beginning of March. No offence to anyone that I work with but this will probably be the most important meeting of the year for us. Getting everyone that supports Oliver into one room so that they can discuss how he’s doing, what he needs and what everyone’s next steps are. I’ve spoken to a few people about the meeting and I’m excited and worried about it. I’m grateful that we can get as many people as possible involved to help shape what’s going on but at the same time it makes me sad at the same time that I need to push for a meeting with physio, OT, Portage, SALT, local SEN team, health visitor, nursery and anyone else that we can manage to get there. I’m not ashamed to say that there’s days where I don’t want to need any of the teams to support him but I’m grateful that they do.

Now for me and my promises I made to myself at the end of the last post.

I’ve found a hobby

  • Yes I have found a hobby and I’m sticking with it. Running – who’d have ever thought my hobby would be running 😂 I’m laughing myself right now because before Christmas if you asked me if I had a hobby I’d ask if napping on the couch was one 😂 I have book club and love book club, but it’s only a meet up once every 6 weeks and I need something that I do weekly to keep me sane. I didn’t realise I’d lost my sanity until I started going. I’m not a solo runner by any means I’ve been lucky enough to find a running group that suits my needs
    • They meet regularly
    • They aren’t highly competitive
    • They’re friendly (and a laugh)
    • They’re supportive
    • They like being social

    I went on my first run on the 9th Jan. I’ve had a week off due to being ill but I’ve managed to get up to being able to ‘run’ for four miles without really stopping. I can definitely do 3 without stopping. I’m not fast and I probably resemble Phoebe from friends as I run but I feel so much better for it and it’s transferred into every aspect of my life. My head actually feels clearer. I didn’t realise that I was suffering with so much brain fog until it went away!

    We are two!

    We’ve been responsible for another human for two whole years!

    What a learning curve it’s been and if I could go back to this day two years ago I’d tell myself not to worry, it will all be ok. There’s more tears than I ever could have even imagined that there would be but after each time I’ve been pushed to the point of being unable to control my emotions and let it all out, I’ve got right back up, brushed myself down and gone head first back at it all again. I would tell brand new mummy me that there’s far more strength hidden than you can imagine and to just keep at it.

    In two years we’ve gone from expecting the absolute worst to being surprised almost daily. Olivers two year review is coming up and I can tell you that a large chunk of that list that’s expected of two year olds we won’t meet, and I’m ok with that.

    I am ok with that

    12 months ago I probably wouldn’t and I’d have had a breakdown and go completely introvert over it and not talk about it.

    Types of things they’re going to expect:

    ❌Independent standing and even walking independently

    ✔️Responding to his name

    ✔️Talking

    ✔️Independence

    ❌Brick building

    ❌Kicking and/or throwing a ball

    ❌Put two words together for a short sentence

    I can tell you what he can do!

    Find fun in anything that’s not an actual child’s toy. His number one ‘toy’ at the moment is a smalls peg dryer. To those that are wondering what that is. You know that plastic contraption that you put socks and knickers on, on your washing line? THAT! It is a wonderful noise maker.

    He can read a book to me, well maybe he can’t read it, but he can imitate reading by running his finger across the page over the words and make noises as though he’s story telling

    He is emotionally aware. If I’m sad he’s sad, if I’m happy he’s happy. He understands emotions and processes them accordingly.

    He mentally stores things and brings them back out later. Like watching you pretend to be asleep and then later do the same thing

    He can, and will, wave at every single person that he sees and has an unbelievable way of just making people smile by being him

    He understands every word that you say.

    I could have a child that ticks every item on the list that the nhs says they ‘should’ be doing by age two…but chances are they wouldn’t have half the personality, half the imagination or determination that Oliver has. Life would be much easier and there’d be much less worry than we currently have but I wouldn’t want to trade that for the hilarity, surprises and pride that we have each day.

    Life isn’t always easy but loving him definitely is 💙

    Prader willi awareness month

    So May was prader willi awareness month which I intended on hitting full force…and well this fell on its arse a little

    But I’m ok with that

    First the first time in months and months I’ve been able to lift my head and just get on with family life. We’ve had appointments and what not still but I’ve been able to just enjoy the three of us. It’s crazy to think that in the 19 months Oliver’s been around this is the first time this has actually happened but I’m in a good place!

    So!

    Positives that we can share that have happened. We can now pull ourselves up. It’s a completely unconventional way but that’s how we roll in our house! Why do everything the ‘normal’ way…that’s boring!

    We now have the fastest commando crawler I’ve come across. Getting from the play room to the kitchen in the blink of an eye. We can finally sit ourselves up unaided (I genuinely never even realised this had happened until I started noticing him sat up everywhere and spied on him)

    We are starting to sign and gesture way more. This is making life so much easier for us. I don’t know what we’d do without the signing (well I do, we’d have a much more agitated child)

    My personal favourite- arms up and grabby hands because he wants to be picked up. However this has also caused some heart ache as he will also go to anyone, and I mean anyone. He will throw his arms up to be cuddled by people he’s never even met, we will have to keep on with the stranger danger chat 😉

    He dishes out kisses now. Especially to cuddly toys and it’s so cute. He loves to cuddle and he knows when he wants to cuddle and there’s no escaping (another favourite of mine)

    A shout out to those who embraced go orange on the 25th with very very short notice, I didn’t get sent photos from everyone, some where snapchats but it never fails to remind me how far from alone we are in everything that is going on. The improvisation from some people made me howl. Oliver doesn’t have just Mike, myself and Roo as cheerleaders…he has our family and friends right there with us! We wouldn’t be as on top of things as we are without you

    See you next year awareness month! Next time there will be much more awareness spread

    The ‘my child’s a genius’ moment

    Now I’m sure you can guess by the title that I’ve hit into a stage where he’s started doing new things very rapidly.

    I don’t know whether I had low expectations for what Oliver would do and when or I just abandoned expectations and took things as they’ve come and all of a sudden so many things are happening that I’ve had a wide eyed moment and thought ‘shit my child’s a genius’

    Don’t get me wrong I don’t think he’s going to ever astonish people with his IQ and I can clearly see that he’s doing things that all other children are doing….but he’s my child and I made him (with a bit of help from Mike) and he’s doing so many new things that he’s constantly amazes me. No one tells you when you have a child much other than ‘it’s the most amazing thing’, ‘you’ve never know a love like it’ and ‘it’s hard’. I’m sure every mum has that moment where they look and go ‘bloody hell look at what you can do! I’ve only shown you that once and now you’ve mastered it’

    Photos now take a couple of takes …

    Olivers brain seems to have had more ‘sponge power’ since he’s started growth hormone. He’s grown, he’s put weight on, he’s much more vocal and now he’s ‘doing things’. He’s not walking, he’s only just (by the skin of his teeth) commando crawling. He is, however, the fastest roller in nursery and is now solving little puzzles like his lock a block and his ball tube without any problem. My new favourite is blowing a kiss, he can’t blow a kiss and what he does is comparable to a nazi salute or someone acting out taking their hat off to greet you good day BUT I know exactly what it means and now you do too! This is my favourite part of having a child, being able to look at him and know exactly what he’s after, when he’s not right. It is by far the most amazing skill (other than patience) that he’s taught me. I didn’t think it’d be him teaching me.

    He is the happiest little soul and I’ve now been informed that all visitors to the nursery have to give him a high five when they come in the room, he also loves to dance with Karen and the girls. Portage was even impressed when we started with a language bag and he managed to get all animals bar the sheep correct on the first go. He has amazing concentration and has a keen eye for where you’re hiding things and picks things up so quickly that mummy and daddy need to start watching what they say just in case!

    There isn’t really much purpose to this post other than to boast about how well we’re doing, I don’t think it’s the ‘norm’ to be as excited by ‘where’s your head?’ Or ‘can you point at the piggy for me please’ as we are but our norm is different to everyone else’s

    For the parents of all children out there, especially the ones who develop a little more in their own time rather than the doctors and health visitors schedule, enjoy every moment as I’m already starting to realise that time is going far far too fast and I wish I could slow it down!

    Often referred to as the ‘beginning of the end’ this is Olivers first forward movement. We’ve waited a lot longer than other people to get to this point….I may regret it at a later date but I say bring on the end!

    A year on

    Hoping that Oliver would just magically awaken one day and be just like all the other babies slipped away week by week, four weeks to the day of him being in the neonatal unit we were told that the consultants wanted to talk to us as our results were in. 

    Mike hadn’t come into the unit that morning as he was trying to sort out our front so that when we eventually managed to get Oliver back home we didn’t have to fight the bushes to get him out of the car.  Before leaving Mike had joked saying ‘I bet because I’m not coming up they have the results’

    We’d established a very hamster wheel routine of get up, eat a bit of breakfast, go to the hospital, stay until around 1. Go home do a few bits and then either go back for the late afternoon feed or the late night feed and a cuddle. Then go home and sleep. 

    Or at least try and sleep.

    It’s not so easy to sleep when the little sausage you carried for 9 months isn’t where he was supposed to be. 

    So this timea year ago we were hopeful we’d get some answers and be able to start making some plans. 

    We’d been told what they were testing for so had already done a little bit of research but because there were a few things we couldn’t single into anything. We’d joined a hypotonia group as we knew he was floppy and we were reaching out to see if there’s anything we could be doing to help him.

    Ward round was about to happen so after frantically messaging Mike and ringing him to tell him to get up to the hospital because they have the results, we had an agonising wait while they checked over everyone else’s baby and we waited in the parents kitchen.

    We were called through and sat down and explained that the results had come back. 

    ‘The results have come back and he has something called prader willi syndrome’ 

    You know how in films when people are told about life changing news there’s a kind of muffled silence where your brain is processing news and can’t take anything else in – well that happened

    The nurse who we spent most of our time with cried. I cried. 

    Looking back, I thought at that moment I was sad. That I was upset that we’d not got what we wanted. We wanted a baby that we could just take home. I realise now that the cry was relief. There was no more unknown of ‘what if?’ , ‘why?’ , ‘will he come home?’ , ‘if he does will it be by Christmas?’ There was a new unknown but we knew there’d be a path that others had been down.

    We made a call to my dad and Mikes mum as they were in work and then went off to do the visiting to give out our news. A comment from Mikes Mum sticks with me, ‘you seem ok with it?’ 

    I think every couple are different when receiving life changing news. Some retreat, some take a while to accept, some go into denial. I’m fortunate enough to be in a relationship where we both have a mind set of ‘let’s just get on with it’. This news had the potential to make or break us and all it did was make us stronger.

    Being compulsive planners we went straight off and found groups. Every prader willi syndrome group on Facebook and the welcome and support that we received off the families was amazing.

    When I put up our diagnosis on Facebook I mentioned that if anyone has any questions please feel free to ask. I still stand by this. After the status went up and the likes etc that was a perceived support system. Only one person sent me a message to talk to me privately about it and ask the questions that I think most people are frightened to ask. Please, please never be frightened to ask about it, it’s also never too late to ask. Don’t think because you didn’t ask questions at the beginning that you can’t ask now.

    In the past year we’ve come so far, I’ve had wobbles but when I look at where we started and how Oliver didn’t move and wasn’t able to feed and now we have a baby that you can’t take your eyes off because he can roll himself to the hallway, we may not be crawling but we are sitting independently and we can shout dada over and over and over. Sometimes we remember to shout mum but it’s mainly dada. 

    The prader willi world we thought we were entering when we were diagnosed is so far from the truth of what we are currently living.

    For any newly diagnosed parents. As scary as everything seems now, I can promise that a year down the line you may not have forgotten all those feelings of worry but they will stop. I now have a crazy one year old, who other than being a bit slower with some of the milestones that babies are ‘supposed’ to have hit by now, you wouldn’t have a clue that anything was ‘up’ with him. He smiles and laughs more than any other baby I’ve come across and he makes me feel proud every single day. 

    For those that have stuck by the three of us all the way through and regularly ask the questions about what’s going on and how is he and how we are collectively, thank you. It’s not always easy but having people that are supportive makes everything so much easier. 

    Oliver at 1 month, 6 months and 1 year old

    One Small Step for us, potentially one giant leap in research

    What a day Saturday was! This was the first of many One Small Step events that we will no doubt be attending year after year. 

    So for those that have missed Olivers JustGiving page and what we were up to this weekend we’ve walked a massive 12.5 miles to raise money for prader willi research UK 

    As soon as we’d heard about the event we decided that we would sign up. Raising money, meeting families and going to four pubs while doing both it sounds like a perfect event for us and it was! One of the pws families own a chain of pubs in Stockport and had arranged a walk that took us from one end to the other. We started with breakfast in a pub FILLED with families. There were babies, some younger than Oliver, some older, brothers, sisters, nans, grandads, aunties, uncles…..I think you’re getting the picture. 

    I wandered around to see if I recognised any faces and found Catherine and Wills group and said hello! Every time I see William he looks bigger and stronger and Catherine always looks prouder. Catherine introduced me to another PWS mum who told me that last year her 7 year old son completed the whole walk. This is her 7 year old son who has prader willi syndrome. The syndrome that is often defined with poor muscle tone and therefore the kids get tired very quickly.

    Google would never tell you that a seven year old pws child could do this, the only way you learn these things is by integrating and going to things. Google would tell you that your future is bleak and that your child will be nothing but a worry. This little was also called William. Maybe it’s in the name? Maybe it’s the growth hormone? 

    I can tell you exactly what it is, he’s a product of his environment. He has parents that will do anything and everything for him and so far every pws parent that I’ve come across will move heaven and earth to get what they need for the child and will put everything they can into making their child be the best they can be. This is by no means limited to special needs parents, this is what every real parent would do! It’s just there’s heaven, earth and just a few extra walls for special needs parents.

    We ate our breakfast of porridge and bananas and got ourselves ready to set off along with about 300 other people. All of us in our blue OSS tshirts

    We stayed back and left last, there were seven adults, five kids and two dogs so keeping to the back meant that we could all keep together and not worry about getting lost. 

    At the back was a great spot. One of our new pws heroes, William, was at the back. He kept a steady pace and to say at times I felt a little over whelmed with how well he was doing is an understatement.m

    The day took from 10am through to around 5.30pm 

    12.5 miles

    Mud and lots of it. 

    Picturesque walk ways


    Not easy emotionally or physically but we did it! Oliver has his medal and in true Olympic style gave it a bite for the obligatory paparazzi photo 


    I’ve not hidden how not inTouch and uncomfortable I am with my feelings in my posts and this day had a lot of anxiety leading up to it.  For a long time I’ve kept my anxiety hidden and for those that know me really well, you know how stressed I can get over the strangest things. Spending a day with 300 other people who I don’t know and seeing families with older children and potentially looking into our future worried me. 

    I worry a lot. 

    I play it down a lot of the time. I worry about our future, I worry how I will be perceived if I’m not having a 100% happy day. I worry about how people will react to me saying about how scary the unknown is. Mainly because they say oh you shouldn’t worry you should take each day as it comes. That is FAR easier if you aren’t stood in my shoes. As an outsider it’s always been my favourite thing to say. I don’t really say it now, well I do, but I say it to other people so they can’t say it to me. I’ve found deflecting it and getting it in there first stops it being fired at me. I’ve also found just telling people positive things also helps conversation. Mainly because being a negative nancy doesn’t really get you anywhere and doesn’t make you a joy to be around. 

    On Saturday I wasn’t a joy to be around. I found that walking on my own with my own thoughts was a bit easier. Sometimes I’m a bit odd and I’m a bit awkward. Mainly because I don’t really know what to do with myself when my brains whirring away and I get lost in my spiraling thought process. 

    I’m lucky to have a huge support network around me. 

    I’m lucky that I had a team of 10 people with me.

    I’m lucky that over 300 other people care as much about this cause as we do

    I’m lucky that these events exist to meet new families

    Basically I’m lucky 

    I’ve no idea what the total amount raised was just yet and if you’ve read my post and wonder what the sponsorship will be going towards, to put it bluntly it’s Olivers future. It’s to help families just like mine get to the bottom of how we can stop the hunger, the hunger that won’t ever go away, it’s to look into new way of treating and managing the symptoms for the children and the adults who have pws.

    Without research we will never find the ‘cure’ that we’re looking for and finding a cure starts with hope…..and money. 

    So if you could spare anything at all Oliver, Mike and I will be extremely grateful along with every other pws family in the world. They can’t all say thank you but from all of us and the support network around us thank you. The support means everything to us

    Oliver’s JustGiving page
     



    Our future is bright 

    A few weeks ago Mike and I met with Catherine and Wills and I’m so grateful that she asked us to meet up. 

    Since we’ve had Oliver I’ve not hid that I feel a bit alone and a bit anxious about his condition so when I got chatting with Catherine and she suggested meeting up I said yes straight away. 
    It was only after saying yes I thought about how it may affect how I feel. I was excited about meeting Wills and seeing what we have ahead of us, I was also a little aprehensive. What if I didn’t like what I saw, what if I burst into irrational tears and can’t stop….what if, what if, what if. 

    Wills was different to other two and a half year olds that I’ve met before. This wasn’t in a bad way by any means, he has a wonderful quiet and gentle little personality. He was intrigued by Oliver and wanted to show him all of his Mr.Tumble cards. I didn’t realise how many alter egos this character had….I’m sure that it won’t be long before I know them all and will eat, sleep and breathe them just as Catherine seems to be doing.

    It was a huge relief to both Mike and I to see how well he’s getting along. He was much taller than we thought he’d be (seeing all of the usual stated facts you’d think anyone with pws doesn’t get past 5ft) he’s taller than my three year old nephew which was exciting for us to see. He’s cruising along chairs and tables so isn’t far off independent walking. He understood everything that was being said to him and he’s signing to show mum what he’s after. Another thing we’ve expected to need to learn and this has reinforced it. 

    Just as we were about to say goodbye Catherine was a little teary and I think that it’s probably a flash back for her looking at Oliver, Mike and I and it was definitely a reminder of how far Wills had come along. 

    One thing that we’re discovering (after google gave us the fright of our life when we first found out his diagnosis) is that the older pws children are our inspiration and the drive and hope that we need to get through the tough days. It’s not easy seeing other babies the same age and younger being so much more robust and sturdy in comparison but that’s made so much better by meeting families like Catherine and Wills and seeing that we will get there even if it is slower. I’ve heard this week that one of our older pws inspirations have got B and C gcse grades. I know people who haven’t had to face all these difficulties that never managed to get those grades. 

    Life no longer looks so much of a worry. We’re optimistic and the sky is the limit for our little man. 

    We left Ottos with a huge weight lifted off us, a weight that I wasn’t overly aware was sat there. We were on a complete high and spent the entire day chatting about them. I don’t know whether it was seeing our future and how it really isn’t as bad as we thought it would be or sitting and having a conversation with someone that’s gone through all of the same worries and stresses as we have, she had a complete understanding of how we feel and could give us answers to questions because of first hand experience. This is the first time since Oliver was born that I’ve sat with someone and talked and not felt worried about how my reaction  may effect them. I know if I’d got upset that it wouldn’t have mattered because she’d understand that feeling at that time because she’d been in that exact position before. 

    We’ve also had our genetics appointment since meeting them, we were quite shocked that the genetics team couldn’t really offer us any information that we didn’t already really know. We’ve also learnt that health professionals can quite often bullshit their way through things. I do not mean you should never listen to health professionals but when someone tells you that they have a lot of experience with pws children/patients and then in the following sentence tells you that we won’t get growth hormone soon (as in before two years of age)  then she either didn’t have a lot of experience with this genetic condition or she doesnt know as much as she thinks. Even after informing her that we know he will get it she again denied it would happen and we pretty much had to agree to disagree.

    We’ve gone from being under the impression it was deletion to her baffling us and asking for Mikes blood to check to see what the chances are of it happening again. For those unaware there are three different genetic causes for pws and only one (as far as we believed) would be something that could happen for future pregnancies. This isn’t the one that we believed Oliver has.

    We’ve also been given guidance on our next pregnancy and the testing that we can have and being informed that we couldn’t get a medical termination if the results where positive. Now I don’t know what you think when you hear the term ‘medical termination’ but Mike quite rightly said that surely it’s a matter of ethics and it’s our decision? After some back and forth we then established that she actually meant that there would be no advice to terminate as it’s not a life limiting condition and we’d have to go through the ‘normal’ termination process – what ever this may be. We then explained that we would use the tests to prepare ourselves, to not go through what we have just been through. The agonising wait and testing that we went through when Oliver was born, waiting for test results for brain damage etc knowledge and preparation would have made the situation a little easier. Not painless – just less stressful

    To sum up our genetics appointment it was more a waste of time than anything. I don’t feel that who we spoke to gave us anything that we actually needed and we feel that we were challenged then dismissed on things that we brought up. 

    This was disappointing for us. We know that there are so many rare genetic conditions out there so we understand that they can’t know each one inside out – we just ask that people are honest about it. We’re ok when (as my gp did) we are told that they know the very very basics and we will have better knowledge of everything going on. 

    We’ve now got to sit and wait for the blood results to see what the future may or may not bring.

    We aren’t living that far ahead though, we’re just trying to enjoy each day as we have it.

    Finding time to reflect

    So I’ve set myself the task of looking back from time to time.

    We all spend so much time fixated on achieving our next goal that we sometimes forget to look at back at where we started.

    From a personal growth point of view I think I’ve learnt how to be more open. I now can let people know how I am feeling. Something that I’ve always bottled up and pushed to one side. I’ve finally managed to use the words ‘I’m struggling’

    Before Oliver came along I’ve never ever admitted that. How can you get to 28 and never admit that you’re struggling? I haven’t even used it in terms of juggling getting a baby ready and sorting myself. I’ve used it in the emotional sense.  Struggling would probably be an understatement for how I’d felt the day I’d used it. It was a bad day, Oliver pulled his tube out, I had a mad panic to get him ready to get out of the house and up to the hospital to get it replaced and finish his feed, get home, feed myself and get myself to baby massage. I didn’t get to baby massage. I got back into the house and cried. Not because I was sad but because I was frustrated. Being a creature of habit and a compulsive planner I know how long it takes to do everything and can always plan my days so that I’m able to get out and to places on time. That went out the window. That’s an emotional strain on me straight away because I get stressed when things aren’t moving smoothly. Then to go up to the hospital to get the tube put back in after seeing his beautiful little face without a giant teddy bear sticker holding down a tube is hard. I know that he needs it, he wouldn’t survive very long without it but I love that little face, he looks so different without it.

    I think emotionally it tugs at me seeing him that way because in my head that’s how my baby should be. I’ve accepted he has what he has but it doesn’t stop me still having moment of weakness where I could be like all the other mums I know. No tubes, no extra stuff to sterilise, not having hundreds of appointments, being able to make your own judgement calls without having several different health professionals telling you that you can or can’t do that.


    I was also tired. I’ve complained about being tired before I had the baby. This is a whole different kind of tired to what I knew before having a baby. This is ‘cant find the right words’ tired, for those reading this that haven’t had a baby and think you’ve been tired. Imagine the time you were most tired, now imagine doing the same thing day in day out and loving almost every moment of it but not getting that one full sleep that you need to recharge. Before you say it,  whoever made this line has also never had a baby, ‘sleep when the baby sleeps’. Do you know what you’re doing when the baby sleeps? Everything that you’d normally try to fit in the day. Cleaning, cooking, eating, bathing and even going to the toilet.

    I seem to have digressed a little here. Anyway I’ve finally admitted when I’m struggling. I typed the text through teary eyes and flopped onto the couch and ordered a yogbar. Did you know you can get that delivered? Well I didn’t and you have to spend £10 to get it delivered. I’ve now got a stash of it in the feeezer for ’emergencies’ I realise now on reflection that:

    1. That wasn’t an emergency but I’m glad I ordered yogbar in
    2. I felt so much better for telling someone I’m struggling
    3. I wasn’t actually struggling emotionally from a mental perspective it was struggling emotionally from being tired, so very, very, very tired.

    So emotionally I have grown, I feel I may have matured and that’s why I can hold my hands up now and tell people how I feel.

    As a couple – now those who know mine and Mikes relationship know that we aren’t soppy. In fact we’re probably the complete opposite of what teenagers imagine a proper relationship is. He’s my best friend and my rock. I talk to him about everything. Probably far too much sometimes and share things that no one wants to know.

    For the highly strung individuals we are, our relationship is built solidly on trust and we’re both incredibly independent people so we both have our own friends and go on our own nights out. We have high expectations of each other that we never seem to have to discuss but we seem to maintain them without any problems.

    I knew when we found out we were pregnant that it’d change our relationship and that when the baby came it’d change our relationship again. I never realised how much having baby can change a relationship. I think we’re both now more patient with each other and I’ve found new things about him that I love. I’m so glad that we’ve both grown together and stayed just as united, if not more, with everything that we’ve gone through because it hasn’t been easy and it’s not always going to be easy but I’ve realised more than anything that no one else out there could be a better dad for Oliver.

    Now for Oliver.

    When I started this blog I’d been left in for the night while Mike went on a night out. For the first time in a month or so Mike and I had spent the night away from each other. Not for long, just a few hours but when you’ve been side by side for so long (pretty much from mid October we were like Siamese twins right up until his return to work in January) I was left with my own thoughts, which is dangerous at the best of times. In the two and a bit months since Olivers been home he’s progressed so well. I have moments where I feel like we aren’t getting anywhere but:

    • he’s gone from drinking 5mls to averaging 60mls a time and has even got up to the occassional 90mls recently.
    • He has started smiling and laughing and his little personality is starting to shine through.
    • His weight has now more than doubled since birth and he’s finally out of newborn clothes and into 0-3 month old. I did get excited I think that he was in 3-6 month clothes….he is NOT that big yet but it amused me to no end looking at the size of the 3-6 month clothes on him and remembering that’s what the new born clothes looked like when he was born.
    • He now has the most gorgeous rolls. They’re on his thighs and his little arms. I can grab his little chest and shout ‘boobies, boobies, boobies’ at him (he finds this as fun as I do) and he also finds it hilarious when I shout ‘pooooey’ when I open up a dirty nappy.
    • I’ve finally found someone who finds me funny and appreciates my daft repetitive songs.

    My post cover pic is evidence of how well he’s getting on. That skinny little baby is well and truly gone

    He came home pretty much like a little doll that didn’t really do much and he’s now a baby, he’s my baby and I’m so proud of every little thing that he’s doing. 

    Whys Roo getting in on my photo?!