Category Archives: pregnancy

COLLECTING MEMORIES 

Are you a memories collector? I most of them just in my head, or on the photos, but sometimes I leave myself other “souvenirs”. This is mostly when it comes to my children. I have a little box for each of them, where I put the memories of the first few weeks of their lives. What’s inside? Hospital bracelets,  first dummies, Ben has got a little hospital hat, and umbilical cords ( just the piece that fell of baby belly). My Paul can’t understand how can I store something like umbilical cord, but this is polish tradition. I’m pretty sure my mum still has got my cord, if it didn’t fell apart after so many years. 

Last Sunday we visited Paul’s mum. She gave us another memory. Paul’s christening clothes! She kept them for over 30 years, and they look like new. I don’t care if it’s old fashioned christening dress, Eva is going to wear it for her first big day, that way we’re going to have a very special memory.

The first week

We’re back at home with baby Eva, tomorrow she will be one week old. This week had been very chaotic, we still keep on trying to get back to our routines, be with Eva all the time, and don’t forget to pay enough attention to Oliwer and Ben. This is not an easy thing…

First thing I want to tell you about is after birth. Remember when Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton walked out to people less than 12 hours after giving birth to little princess? She looked stunning, and I hope she felt like this as well. Trust me, if anybody told me to dress up, sort myself out and walk out after giving birth, I’d tell him to go to hell. And my girl was born quick and without any complications. Can’t imagine someone who had a hard time giving birth doing that. After this stressful and painful time, your body still hurts for at least a day. Your “inside” needs to clean itself, so you have bleeding, that can be stronger or weaker, depends on how your child birth went. And there’s a belly. Don’t let yourself think, that it will disappear a day after. Oh no, your pregnancy belly is still there, just squashy and empty, it’s not easy to get rid of that.

Eventually, if everything is OK with you and your baby, you’ll go home on the same day. And here reality awaits for you. Tiredness is a common thing, you wake up thinking of going back to bed. Baby has got it’s own rhythm, and you have to adjust yourself to it, plus make sure you don’t forget about your other kids, make sure they don’t feel left out. I’ll tell you from my point of view, that it’s easier done with younger children, than older ones. My Ben (4) is happy just to sit with me, have some cuddles, help me feeding
(as I don’t breast feed) the baby, while Oliwer (11) needs something more, not even with me, it’s more about Paul and dad – son relationship. So we work on it. They did some “men shopping” together yesterday, today they went to watch our local football team, even though they both support Manchester United. But the point is, they spend some quality time together. Believe me, i can see the change in Oliwer straight away. He is happier, his aura was a bit grey this week, today it shone brightly…

Work out your way. Most of mums wants their man to help them at night time. Get up when baby cries, and be awake when they are awake. For me it doesn’t sound right. I’m very appreciative of what Paul does for me. He’s two weeks off from work, and help me
a lot at home. He does cleaning, shopping, and help with the baby. He just wants me to focus on Eva and have a rest. Seems to me a bit selfish and unfair to wake him up at night, while he does so much during a day. Soon he’ll go back to work, I can’t expect him to go there tired, because he had to get up at night. How we worked it out for now, is that I get up at night, and then in a morning, he takes Ben to school, then look after Eva, and I can catch up with some sleep. Works for us just brilliantly.

In the end I want to mention feeding your newborn. I know, that midwives and doctors say, breastfeeding is the best way. But my daughter is big, she it’s nearly a double what newborns usually eat. I tried to breastfeed, but there wasn’t enough in my breast for her. If this happens to you, don’t stress yourself, just change to bottle any time, nobody will say a bad word, you’re not doing anything wrong, ready milks now are as good as breast milk, they contain everything what your baby needs.

So find your way with everything, and just enjoy being a parent.

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Baby Eva Monika, 3 days old

THE BABY IS COMING!

It wasn’t suppose to be this way. I imagined panicked,  broken waters, unexpected contractions. Nothing like this. I went for a usual check to midwife yesterday. Unfortunately she discovered  that my blood pressure is sky high, there are proteins in my pee and my legs are swollen. Been send to hospital for a check. It turned out I have a condition called Pre-eclampsia. So I had to stay in hospital and just wait now until they take me over to the labour ward to induce the labour. Can’t wait,  but I’m very stressed at the same time. So please everyone fingers crossed it’s going to be quick and easy.

CHILDBIRTH – PREPARE YOURSELF

Tomorrow is my due date, but it looks like my baby girl is not going anywhere. So I’m “running” thru my hospital bag again, to make sure I have everything, and I thought I’ll tell you, from my point of view, how it is to give birth, as I’ve done it twice already.

  1. First thing – the bag. My bag is prepared from the beggining of August, as you never know, when you are going to need it. I’ll be honest, I’m very unorganized person, so my partner got involved in it, he made a list, I just added a few things to it, and we packed it. Do it with your partner if you can, it will help him realize that it’s coming sooner or later. Here is our list:
    FOR ME:
    – 2 or 3 sleeping dresses, one to give birth in, second to change after, and third, because it’s a very dirty business and you don’t want to walk around looking like it’s Halloween
    – slippers
    – shower gel, for me there’s nothing nicer than a shower straight after
    – dressing gown
    – towel
    – face cloth, to wipe your face during childbirth, as I promise you, you will be very sweaty
    – a few pairs of big pants
    – pads for pants
    – pregnancy bra
    FOR THE BABY:
    – bodysuits
    – sleeping suits
    – vests
    at least 3 of each, as babies like to get dirty
    – blankets, I packed 2
    – nappies
    – baby wipes
    – hats, socks and mittens
    – dummy
    – muslin clothesThat’s the essentials according to me, and it’s only if you’re going to hospital for a short stay (around 6 hours after giving birth). Remember, better take more than panic after. I also have some special baby clothes prepared for leaving the hospital. I believe it’s a special moment, and has to be perfect.
  2. Planning the childbirth. I’ve been through it with midwife last month. She asked me about painkillers mostly. And what I can say is, don’t be a hero. Don’t say – I don’t want painkillers, because I want to be there with body and mind. My first time – very easy. They couldn’t give me any painkillers as it was to late for that, but I was the lucky one, done the job quick, and I can’t remember much of pain. Second, I wanted to be hard, but it was more painful, and as soon as it started I were begging for a gas. This time, I said to midwife that I want gas as from the beginning, and I won’t say No! to anything if the pain is strong.
  3. OMG IT STARTED!!! It’s always a shock. My first child – contractions woken me up at 1 o’clock in the morning. I don’t remember much from in between this moment and giving birth. Second one – my waters broke while I was helping older son with his homework. Both times I felt great! Didn’t think that it’s time at all! This time, I’ve spent so many nights laying in bed with contractions, thinking – are they real or fake? The truth is – if you have time and strength to think about it, 9 times out of 10 they aren’t real. When it comes, there won’t be any doubts. YOU WILL KNOW!
  4. Way to hospital. Just a quick word about that. Plan it before. If you have other children, make sure you organize with family and friends who will come to look after them when you have to go. If you don’t have a car, like I don’t make sure you know who will take you to the hospital. If your husband is working, plan what happens if it starts when he is at work. In our case, I call Paul and make my way to hospital with a friend,  Paul makes his own way, and we meet in there.
  5. Don’t be afraid to shout and swear. In fact, you’ll use words you never suspected that you know. When you’re giving birth The Game of Thrones seems to be a light daytime soap. You are pushing a little human out of your body!

    And then, when it’s all finished, you feel a relief, blessing like in a happy end of Disney story, in your head everything is singing, and this little baby that midwife has put on your belly is most beautiful miracle of your life.
    You will never forget this moment, but you will forget the pain. Don’t be scared, ask midwives and nurses for everything you want. They are there for you and your baby.
    GOOD LUCK!!!

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My boys after Ben was born

2 DAYS TO GO

It’s two days left to my due date. How frustrating, when from over a month you hear that the baby is ready to go, and from three months you look like you’re going to pop.

My belly is giant, I can’t move, I can hardly walk, everything hurts, and yet I try to do as much as I can, because I know that more active you are, the labour will be easier. I wish my girl came out now, I want to see her. Paul is a blessing. Never met a man so carrying, and so helpful. I know that if he could take my belly of me and carry it for a day he would do this, just to make it easier for me. I keep on saying it and will say it again, I know I’m not the first woman to be pregnant, I’m grateful that my baby is healthy and everything is ok, but I’ve done it twice already and never had it so hard.

That’s why for a sake of all pregnant girls at the and of their way, I want to ask people around to:

– stop pulling surprised faces and say – you still didn’t give birth?! – clearly, as you can see, no pushchair in front of me, just the belly. I wish I could say that loud, but my mum taught me to be nice;

– don’t say – your belly is very big. Are you sure it’s not twins? – First thing, I can see myself, and I know how do I look like, no need to tell me that I’m big, and as you can imagine we live in 21 century, we have 3 and 4d scans, there’s no way that at the end of pregnancy I wouldn’t know how many babies I’m having;

– when you see me from far away don’t wave and show me to your friends as you wanted to say, look she’s still pregnant, and don’t smile all do this little nice laugh, because it’s not funny for me

– in general comments about my look, or how do I feel are annoying at the moment, and I don’t understand why people can’t talk to me about anything else but my pregnancy. I’m still the same person you talked to before my belly grew, and I still have a brain, I have a little human being inside, but I still am the same person.

ALL I WANT NOW IS BABY EVA MONIKA TO BE BORN NOW, PLEASE 

BIG STEPS, BIG CHANGES

Patchwork family is up for a big changes over last few weeks. They start with the new school year. Not only Ben, 4 years old, started full time education, but Oliwer, 11 years old, started Secondary School. Our choice of school was a surprise for many of our friends, as Mcauley Catholic High School, is a bit far from where we live. Oliwer needs to travel everyday by the school bus, and that’s the only scary bit about this choice. I’ve heard so many times, that he would be ok, if he went to Balby Carr, which is only 15 mins walk from our house, but first thing – Oliwer didn’t want to, second thing – Mcauley is much better school, it’s in the second place of the ranking of schools in our town. He really likes it, and I noticed massive change in him already. From a little boy, that sits at home, scared of going somewhere on his own, he turned in, maybe not totally, but more independent young man.
We still have little issues, like yesterday, when he came back with a headache. After a while he came to me, and said, that he was put into second form in science. For those who don’t know, there’s four forms, where first one is the best. My pour, very ambitious boy thought, that he’s going to be in trouble for that, as he knows how important education is for me and Paul. Hopefully he understand now, that second form is not bad, and even if he was in the fourth one, it only mean that he needs to learn a bit more, and maybe with a bit of our help. No point stressing himself out on the second week of the new school year. What I want to ensure my children in every conversation like this, is that they don’t need to be scared to talk to us, we are very proud of them, and they have our support. This is very important for me, that they know this.

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Second big change came on this weekend. For the first time since we’ve split, my boys spent the night in their fathers house. I was dreading this day for the last 3 years, thinking that it will break my heart. I love my boys very much, but I must say, that it was nice to have one evening and morning, only for me and Paul. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t like to do this more often then once a week, the house is to quiet without them, but I think that everybody from time to time, need a non-children evening, to recharge batteries. And apart from that, it’s time for them to build a bond with their father and his family, as he didn’t pay to much attention to them until now.

The biggest change is still to come. I’m 38 weeks pregnant now! Can’t wait for my little girl to be with us. Everything is ready crib, loads of pink and white clothes, and blankets, baby seats, swing, and a pram from my dreams.

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All we need is our baby Eva. Oliwer keeps on asking, when is she coming, Ben kiss my belly and say hello to her, Paul is happy and scared, and I’m tired. I’m big hippopotamus mama, can’t move, everything takes me twice as much time as it used to, and I’m moaning all the time. Honestly, I think Paul deserves a medal for putting up with me, listening to me every day, when even I can’t listen to myself any more. Pregnancy is nothing like they say in parenting magazines. We all want it to be finished now. Can’t wait for little baby Eva Monika to arrive.

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