30 Apr Hey! Hey You There!
You are me……almost two years ago……30th April 2015Have to say it – you’re colossal. You found out last week that the baby you are delivering by C-Section this morning is tiny so really…..what is all that? Fatty bumbum.
Anyway I’m wanting to give you a little heads up on the forthcoming year. It will be both the best and worst of times but I lived to tell the tale – yay!
Ok, before you go to the hospital this morning, you need to shave your nadgers.
I know, I know – you haven’t seen them in almost 5 months but if you don’t a lovely midwife will whip out her clippers at 8:43am and you will be pretty mortified. Somehow the clippers will survive but probably never be the same again.
That midwife, after such a baptism of fire (or wire) will be your best friend over the next 5 days. How awful that I can’t remember her name now.
She will show you such compassion and understanding that you will always wonder what became of her and if you will ever get the chance to tell her how much comfort she brought you amidst the nightmare.
Before you leave at 8am, really really soak up that last cuddle with Niamh. Breathe her in – ingest the little bugger – because when you walk out that door, your relationship will never quite be the same again. Not in any way worse, just different.
The section itself will be exhilarating & terrifying all at once. When they tell you Esme’s weight, don’t freak out. She was delivered at 37 weeks, remember that.
Other answer will come, they will just take longer.
INSIST on that skin to skin for at least an hour. Look at her with love, not fear – she is small but fierce and will thrive now she is in your arms.
The paediatric consultant will put the fear of god into you by relaying vague concerns that all may not be well. Go against everything your anxiety throws a you and trust your instincts.
Keep on pumping!! Refuse those formula top ups and supplement her with your milk. You can do this!
You the shit mamma!
Would you believe that today – 23 months on, you are still feeding her!!
Work through the mastitis, cracked nipples & tongue ties and know that despite everything, you are doing your very best for her.
You are enough.
You will be put into private room. Don’t freak out, it doesn’t mean something is wrong with Esme.
I think to this day, the lovely midwife that shaved your pubes felt she owed you as much as she couldn’t take you for dinner.
You’re gonna cry an embarrassing amount – to midwives, cleaners & the poor breastfeeding peer supporters – that’s ok too. You’ve just had a baby, a tiny one & you have no idea what the future holds. That is scary for anyone.
When you finally go home, don’t hide away- take her to every baby group going. Be proud of her.
Ignore any lingering stares.
They are staring because she is tiny, no other reason. Tell them you don’t have answers yourself but that she is .
She deserves to be at these groups and a part of baby society.
You will never ever get this time back. You will look back and feel so much regret over embracing the dangerous self diagnosis pit of Google.
SWITCH OFF YOUR PHONE.
Work doesn’t matter right now and you are not in the right frame of mind to be making any important decisions. The status, the awards, the recognition – it doesn’t mean anything. It’s a pixel in the bigger picture.
Pssst…..you will end up selling your half anyway. It stops mattering. Your heart now beats for your babies alone until you reach a new equilibrium again.
So here I am – you – 23 months on. My advice to you is ………
Stop drinking 2 cartons of strawberry milkshake a day after having the baby. It doesn’t aid your milk production and it’s keeping you fat.
Do not take the baby to be weighed every week. It serves no purpose other than to make you worry and feel like a failure.
You are not.
Refuse any medication the doctor offers you to get you through this difficult time – all you need is a few gym sessions & a twice daily blub to your best friend at the school gates. Only time will get you through it really.
Keep up the shaving. There are no excuses for a groin modelled on Leo Sayer.
PS – 2016 is a terrible year to be famous – you’ll see what I mean.
Love you lots you foxy fuzzy fanny xxx