This will be attempt three of writing this post.
Admittedly I’ve been a little up and down, this is exactly why it’s taken me three times to get this post into what it needs to be.
Progress is not just for Oliver, since starting this blog I’ve realised that I’m growing just as much as he is. With growth comes that horrible in-between part where you’ve absolutely no idea what’s going on. I’ve been sat in it for a while which is why I’ve not really been posting any blogs
I’ve gone from pushing and fighting and sorting and researching to settling into being a mum.
….Well that’s what I thought anyway, looking back at the last two edits it didn’t just click quite like that.
About three weeks ago I did have a day where something clicked. I often have moments where things click for me. Generally when I’m not directly thinking about the subject. So on my way to my last session of baby massage I got to the top of the road and felt that all too familiar feeling of panic. Anxiety is a nightmare at the best of times but for it to kick in as you’re on your way to somewhere that you have to be social is killer. I sat in the car outside for a while so I could collect my thoughts together
I could finally explain why I’d been feeling the way I have and it’s four words.
I’ve lost my independence
This is actually a huge thing for me. I’m massively independent and always have been. I enjoy standing on my own two feet and it’s gone. It’s all to do with Oliver but not at the same time. It’s not him that’s making me feel as though my legs have taken away. It’s all of the staff that support him. I’m hugely grateful for every bit of support that we’ve had but at the same time it’s hard to cope with.
Next month I’ve been told we should be able to try him with baby rice. Probably not that exciting to most people, this IS exciting for us with all the struggles we’ve had. To do this I have to have two different health professionals present and it’s down to them whether I’m able to carry on.
I had to ask how to wean him and when I’d be allowed.
So far since Oliver was born I’ve made one choice without asking anyone because I’m his mum and I thought it’d be ok. I was told by the dietician that he was sleeping for too long without a feed and made to feel awful. I didn’t back down and I’ve not changed it back to the old way. I know him and he’s doing just fine with what we’re doing.
I think with these struggles and frustrations it’s highlighting other things to me that in turn cause me frustration and upset but for all the wrong reasons. I’m feeling upset with the way I feel people are reacting to both Oliver and I. That upset is not intentional as it’s how I am perceiving something. I can acknowledge this and I can sit and tell you until I’m blue in the face that’s what’s going on. It doesn’t stop me feeling it though and I don’t understand how I can acknowledge that there’s no reason to be upset but still be upset by it.
I had a visit from my health visitor who asked a question and pretty much opened the flood gates. As I’ve said in previous posts I not really a big crier, I often suppress feelings and deal with them all in one big go. Generally when they arrive completely unannounced and at the wrong time.
Fortunately the health visitor is an ideal person to have this happen with, so I’ve struck lucky this time.
I could feel it start to happen the moment I invited her in and she asked how I was.
‘How are you?’
Now for other new mums out there you probably know that’s not asked very often or if you haven’t yet…you soon will. I make a habit of now asking how mums are. Not that I’m not interested in their baby but I’ve become increasingly aware that I’m often not asked. This probably helps me bury issues that need addressing because my focus is the baby and sorting him.
There are bad days. That’s ok and I understand that now….but when your bad days are followed by seeing this….
Since my last post I know that Oliver has made so much progress. The Photo above is enough evidence of that. Just a few weeks ago he couldn’t do this, he wouldn’t move on his stomach very much but look at him now.
His feeding has picked up again, his personality is definitely shining through and he’s turned into a chatter box.
We’ve been to the park and tried the swings, explored the slide and we’ve even tried our jumperoo! He can now sit in these unaided. Granted he’s not actually sitting on his own and is often leaning a little BUT in a matter of weeks he’s gone from floppy baby to regularly surprising us with how sturdy he now is. If you asked me at Christmas if before the end of Feb he’d be doing any of this I’d look at you hopeful and say ‘yes, I hope so’ while secretly thinking ‘Am I being optimistic?’
We now have to make sure we strap him into the bouncer now, gone are the days where he would just lay there and not move. Those legs of his have enough kick in them that he wriggles down and they hang off the end so now he has to be strapped in.
We’ve discovered the baby in the mirror. Close friends understand that. For those I don’t speak to regularly, our morning routine consists of me coming down to sort his bottles so I pop him under the play gym and he talks to the baby in the mirror (I should really charge this baby rent) he really talks, I would love to know what he’s saying.
Attention is now demanded. If you aren’t looking at him he shouts to get your attention and then garbles back to questions you ask. The baby that I gave birth to that responded to very little, who didn’t move or even feed has disappeared. We now have a happy, healthy, chatty, smiling little boy and other than his tube and his small lack of tone you wouldn’t think anything was wrong, he laughs, he smiles and he’s absolutely perfect in every little way
So for my feeling of not really being a mum and being unable to make any decisions…I look at all this and realise that without me being his loudest cheerleader and without me working hard at every last thing that he needs doing, we wouldn’t be where we are right now and that’s worth my battle of losing my independence because my reward is right in front of me.
I’ve started seeing less of prader willi and all of the problems that come with it and I’ve started seeing Oliver for who he is…that sunny little boy who’s going to talk the ear off anyone he gets near or melt their heart with the happiest smile I’ve ever come across in my life. I think this is something that only people with children or family that have additional needs will probably ever understand but it’s a huge thing and I’m so glad that it’s happened sooner rather than later