dating, Motherhood, Mums, Parent, single parent, toddler

Regression

Definition:

A return to a former or less developed state

A return to an earlier stage of life

It’s a strong word. When talked about in parenting circles, it’s usually pre-empted by ‘sleep’ as bleary eyed mums and dads find a fancy term to describe why their kid won’t pipe down. This is happening for me once again right now, but I will get on to that shortly.

First though, I am also regressing in my own life as I am reverting back to being single, moving back to my home town and likely to end up stumbling around some old and familiar haunts in heels that I can’t keep upright in.

Following the recent decision for me and TJ’s dad to go our separate ways, I find myself at the beginning of starting over after a decade of familiarity. One of the biggest changes in modern day living which has completely passed me by is the dating game. The apps, the swiping left (or is it right?!), the etiquette on that fine line between messaging and pestering – I am completely clueless on it all.

I have never been good at knowing what to do or what to say when it comes to courting and I have had little chance to hone my skills in recent years. I do find it easy to get on with most people, anyone who follows my blog knows I usually have quite a lot to say for myself and I truly enjoy meeting new people and discovering what makes them tick. Becoming a parent has also changed me for the better as I am stronger, more confident and more driven than ever before. So, that may be a winning combination to find another happily ever after.

I have no plans at all to throw myself into something too serious head first. I need time to heal, to recover and to learn to have some ‘me’ time again. I am also not looking for a replacement dad for TJ, he’s got one of those already.

But, I believe in love. In the words of SATC’s Carrie, I want real love. Ridiculous, inconvenient, can’t live without each other love. Wanting more for my life is the reason I am applying for my own mortgage in the first place. But when that time comes, I know it will bring the phone checking, the self-doubt and the constant ‘is he just not that into me’ questioning. Online dating can only fuel that. Maybe I won’t have to resort to downloading Tinder and there is that person in the real world for me instead. I will keep you posted.

So, about last night. That parenting pitfall of sleep regression reared its ugly head again.

TJ has been a dream baby overnight for months now, and it’s been essential in order for me to function as a human being. So, when he screamed the house down at 1am one night last week, I resorted to pulling him in bed with me – two hours later when I had exhausted all other options. I prayed that it was a one-off and this wouldn’t be the start of the co-sleeping we abandoned way before TJ’s first birthday.

I was wrong. It happened again last night, at 2am. I didn’t even put up much of a fight this time, grabbing his massive Sleepyhead pillow and thanking God for the space afforded by the king size bed. TJ calmed down thanks to a combination of cuddles with his favourite soft toy and grasping at a chunk of my hair.

Despite the awful sleep deprivation (we both only grabbed a few handfuls of sleep in the hours that followed), it was blissful on fleeting occasions. When TJ let go of my hair and playfully felt my face and said ‘nose’, my heart leapt. When he woke up a little unsure of where he was but relaxed when he saw me and said ‘mama’, I took reassurance that I had done the right thing.

But what’s next? Is this the start of things to come again? It really can’t be as we both need our precious sleep to have positive experiences the following day.

What about you? Have you experienced toddler sleep regression and if so, any tips on how I can get through it?

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Mums, Parent

Nearly 365

November 1 and apparently now Halloween is over, we’re allowed to get into the Christmas spirit. Which means it’s nearly the end of another year (I am using a little artistic license here).

Sometimes, when the festive season approaches, I am blown away by how fast the year has gone.

Not today. Not this time.

Instead of feeling a little like an under-achiever, this year has been very different.

I’ve done loads!

I’ve raised a tiny little baby into a rather large toddler.

I’ve been to job interviews – one of which led to a change in career path.

I’ve blogged – both here and for the fabulous Kiki Blah Blah.

I’ve lost two and a half stone, fitting back into my pre-pregnancy jeans.

I’ve made new friends – but also lost contact with one or two as well.

I’ve nearly died when crawling into a Welsh waterfall (but that’s another story!)

Although we’re not quite ready to hear Big Ben lead us into 2017, I reckon I can tick a good few things off my 2016 to do list.

What about you?

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Motherhood, Parent

Dancing to your merry tune

Last night, in a bid for TJ to let us brush his tooth (singular), I found myself jumping around the bathroom with my toothbrush in my mouth whilst attempting to write and perform the “let’s brush our teeth” song.

It’s come to this.

It did work as a good form of distraction while TJ’s Dad wielded the baby brush. And I don’t blame TJ for wondering why we’re shoving a bit of plastic in his mouth (although he does it himself every 15 seconds).

But it’s a new level of parenthood when you realise your one-year-old has turned you into a performing monkey.

Ten minutes later, TJ’s Dad is skidding across our laminate floor in his socks. This, we have found, is the only way to keep TJ happy as I get him dressed for bed.

On the up side, I reckon I can count the “let’s brush our teeth” song as my daily exercise.

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Baby, Motherhood, Mums

What a boob.

Where did my boobs go?

I swear I just spent around 18 months having a fairly decent pair for the first time in my life.

But, a couple of months after stopping breastfeeding my TJ, and my chest is pretty much back to being just nipple.

I’ve never been particularly gifted in that region. The irony is I was the first of my friends to get boobs at 11 years old. But, they stopped growing at 12 years old so I had to be happy filling an A cup.

During pregnancy and the months immediately following, when I combi fed my little man, I sported quite a rack. I loved it. I finally got that boob job from Mother Nature, and it was better late than never.

But now it’s gone again. I’ve had to sadly stash away the bigger bras in the hope one day they may fit again while I go back to the smaller varieties I had happily hidden at the bottom of my underwear drawer.

I suppose as they are small, least I don’t now have saggy boobs. But I don’t have any boobs at all.

Now I understand why women have more than one baby. It’s all about getting the boobs back…!

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Mums

Green with envy

My road to parenthood was a bumpy one.

Although admittedly smoother than some, we still hit an obstacle or two – namely taking a long time to conceive and a rather nasty c-section which I’m still smarting from.

I know I’m incredibly lucky to have a beautiful, healthy and happy little boy in my life. I count my blessings every single day and I shall never stop being thankful for that.

But that horrible green-eyed monster rears its ugly head when I hear stories from people who fell pregnant after the first time of “trying”, those who had easy deliveries and especially those people who saw their Size 8 figures ping back overnight.

With a cupboard still full of ovulation sticks, a red c-section scar and a diet of Nutribullet green smoothies to lose that mum tum, I’m not a bad person for being a little jealous of those who took the journey to parenthood in their stride am I?

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cesarean, Motherhood

C-sections cut deep

Nearly four months ago, little TJ entered this world via emergency c-section.

Like so many others, I had a relatively easy pregnancy so there were no early indications that my delivery would be anything but “normal” (whatever that means).

Then came an induction due to reduced movement which led to an epidural and pethidine. But with no sign of even dilating 1cm after 12 hours of excruciating contractions and TJ’s heart rate dropping, it was a different story.

Today, I’m feeding TJ and One Born Every Minute came on and they show a c-section. I immediately start crying.

Whilst physically I’m recovering, emotionally there’s still a long way to go.

I have tried to watch YouTube videos of c-sections to try and get my head around what happened. I’ve never got through it. So that’s why I kept the TV on today – I needed to see it. I needed to remember it’s not just me.

The actual procedure went well. But the c-section recovery marred my first days and weeks of motherhood. My body didn’t pop back to normal like other c-section mamas I know. The drugs I relied on for weeks of pain relief were also my worst enemy as I remember so little. I still get twinges and pain in the area making it difficult to feel like “me” again.

I know it’s all OK as TJ is healthy, happy and all-round perfect. And I will be fine too. But, having been robbed of the birth experience I dreamed of, it’s going to take a while before I can put it all behind me.

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