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Stop scaring us with birth horror stories!


“It’s the worst pain you’ll ever feel.” “Take all the drugs, everything you can, it’s the only way you’ll cope.” “It’s horrendous. There’s no getting around it.”

I had all of these comments and many more in the weeks leading up to the birth of my daughter, and they scared me half to death. I have a low pain threshold at the best of times and thanks to everyone’s horror stories about very long and painful childbirths, I was so nervous about giving birth. I heard no positive birthing stories at all so prepared myself for the worst.

So to say I was pleasantly surprised when it wasn’t all that bad is something of an understatement.

I started having contractions at 3.15am on Sunday 6th September and we went into hospital at 7am where we were admitted to the assessment ward as there wasn’t any room on the labour ward, and ended up staying there until 9pm until there was a side room available for me. My contractions were painful, but not unbearable, and came every 5 minutes for most of the day and night, during which all I could have was paracetamol.

We finally went up to the labour ward at 9am the next morning and I was induced at around 10.45am, where the contractions got much more intense, and after 2 hours of pushing and an episiotomy due to her head being in the wrong position, Isla was finally born at 7.57pm.

Yes, it was long (41 hours to be precise), yes, it bloody hurt towards the end and it wasn’t the most pleasant experience of my life, but it definitely wasn’t the pain-addled, gut wrenching scream-filled horror show I’d been lead to believe and at no point did I think “I can’t do this”. I’m not saying I’d do it again every day, but I’m definitely not dreading the idea of doing it again soon.

I’m not at all diminishing how tough, gruelling, painful and traumatic labour is, especially when things go wrong and we need to prepare for a rough couple of days, also I’m sure I was lucky. But it would be nice if we shared our positive childbirth experience too. A good friend of mine is expecting her first in April and said she’d been scared to death by horror stories too, but had felt better hearing mine. 

I’d love to hear some of your positive birth stories too!

* I’m thrilled that this piece has been published on The Motherload! You can read it here…

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Sliding down Fireman Sam’s pole


As it’s Isla’s favourite TV show, we watch a lot of Fireman Sam and to be honest we don’t mind watching it, it’s definitely one of the more bearable kids’ programmes. And some of the little aside jokes and comments the characters come out with do make us snigger (fnar fnar!) Whether or not the writers intentionally add in these little double entendres or it’s just our dirty minds reading too much into innocent comments remains to be seen, but I’ve put together a list of our favourite innuendos (In-Your-End-O…) that have been uttered in episodes of Fireman Sam, rated from 😮(mildly risqué) to 😲 to 😳 😵to 😱 (swoooon) in terms of naughtiness. See what you think…

  • Elvis Cridlington: I love sticky foam! 😲
  • Dilys Price: I don’t want my frillies flapping all over Pontypandy! 😱
  • Bronwyn Jones: Want a fishy nibble? Dilys: Oooh I love a fishy nibble, don’t you Trevor? 😱
  • Elvis: We can slide down the pole at the same time Penny! 😮
  • Station Officer Steele: My poor little vegetables 😳
  • Trevor: Hello Dilys, I bet you can’t wait to get stuck into my sausages! 😵
  • Mike Flood: Station Officer Steele, I’ve been tinkering with your flange joints all morning! 😱
  • Steele: Cridlington, stop squelching! Elvis: sorry sir, my pants are all wet! 😵
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A nod to my child-free friends


In a previous post, I paid tribute to my wonderful mummy friends who have been so amazing since I became a mummy and who I wouldn’t be without now. Well this blog post is for those amazing, understanding, supportive, non-mummy friends, the still-footloose-and-fancyfree ones who are effortlessly cool and don’t judge me for being a boring mum. 

They say you find out who your true friends are when the going gets tough, and since having Isla, our lives have turned upside down and we’ve truly seen who our real friends are. So for those who are still here, I just want to say thank you:

  • For not rolling your eyes when I waffle on and on about Isla for the seventh time in half an hour.
  • For understanding when I have to be selective about what plans we do together, either for monetary, childcare or sheer exhaustion reasons.
  • For being flexible and making the effort to come and see us to keep our friendships alive, as you know it’s hard to just “pop over” these days, and get togethers involve much planning and revolve around Isla’s routine….
  • And also for understanding when I’m so tired I call it a night early when we do get together.
  • For not kicking my arse to kingdom come for not replying to texts/Facebook messages/Whatsapps for hours/days/weeks because my memory is just plain terrible these days
  • For offering to babysit to give Hubs and I a bit of a breather
  • For still sticking by my side even though my life has changed beyond belief since my daughter was born. You are my true friends, and I’m thankful every day to have you in my life. 
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Going back to work


Now that Isla is 16 months old, we feel that the time is right for me to return to work. Frankly, we need the money, and I want to get as much out of my journalism career as I can before we have another baby (which we’re aiming for in a few years time when Isla is at school).

Part of me feels happy and excited about going back to work, it’ll feel like I’m getting part of my old self back and having some time to myself too, but the other part of me will miss Isla like mad, especially this first week.

We wouldn’t even be considering the idea of me going back to work if Isla didn’t love going to nursery so much (she’s going in full time), but as daft as it sounds, but I’m worried that as she’ll be seeing less of us that she’ll forget about us a bit and not see us as her primary carers any more. If she was being cared for by family as well I wouldn’t be worried, but as she’ll be seeing the ladies at her nursery all day, I’m worried she’ll miss them more than me. Is that crazy?

Also I’m worried about what impact it’ll have on her personality. Isla is a lovely, happy placid little girl who loves playing with other children, but I’m slightly concerned about her picking up bad habits from the other children and becoming territorial over her toys. I don’t ever want her to be known as the naughty child who can’t share.

I’d love to hear any stories from working mummies with littluns in full time nursery, the good, the bad and the ugly, about how their little ones got on, just to calm my nerves a bit!