The Law of Sod

The universe has a funny way of noticing when things seem to be going well. As soon as you feel as though your ducks are in a row and things are good, that’s when the Law of Sod kicks in.

Here are my most recognisable Sods Law rules….

  • As soon as you think “Ooh my child has been napping brilliantly lately” that’s when they’ll wake in the night and/or refuse to nap in the day. Similarly…
  • You dread someone asking you if child is a good sleeper/eater/is well behaved etc etc, because as soon as the word ‘yes’ comes out your mouth, child will refuse to eat/sleep etc
  • If you need to be somewhere at a set time and you try to time your little treasure’s naps around said schedule, that’s when child will choose to have a super long nap and wake up 5 minutes after you were supposed to be there
  • The day you decide to nip to the shop without the changing bag is the day child will projectile vomit/poo/pee all over themselves
  • Not to mention feeding child in a restaurant and realising you only have one wipe left, and child has food all over themselves, their clothes, the table and you
  • When you’ve been planning a day out, night out, date night etc etc for ages. You’ve been saving for weeks, got your outfit all planned, booked taxis, hired a babysitter, and you’re just about to walk out the door. You utter the words “bye bye, see you later!” to your little one…almost out the door…then child chooses that moment to projectile vomit and present a raging temperature.
  • That beautiful (and expensive!) little dress you wanted to save for “a special occasion”? The occasion finally arrives…and child has now grown out of it so said beautiful dress has never been worn.
  • You rush to get child home in time for their nap, only for child to nod off in the car for 10 minutes and now child won’t nap 

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…


A year in review

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This year has flown by in the blink of an eye! Our little monkey has grown so much, from a wriggling baby into a full grown, mischievous, loving little toddler who has such a personality!

Now she’s nearly 16 months, her appetite has increased threefold and she eats like a gannet! There’s very little she won’t eat, her favourite is still the tomato and butternut squash pasta I make for her, and she also loves sweet potato fries, Petit Filous and grapes. I can guarantee though, as soon as I publish this, she’ll go through a stage where she won’t want to eat, the contrary madam…

Her vocabulary is coming along nicely, as well as the usual ‘mama’, ‘dada’, ‘nana’ etc she also like to say ‘uh oh’, ‘this’ or ‘that’ while she’s pointing at something she wants, ‘ta’ when we give her anything (she’s learning her manners!) ‘hiya’ or ‘hello’ (which she prounounces ‘hewwo!’) ‘ratbag’ (Hubs called her ratbag as a joke twice and now she won’t stop saying it!) and bizarrely, ‘doctor’! Since we bought her back from the hospital last month, everyone she sees she calls doctor! She’s also said ‘kiss’ once but hasn’t said it since!

Isla is a big bookworm and loves to sit with her books, turn every page and point at everything on every page. She’s really placid and happy to play with her toys while I enjoy a hot cuppa every now and then. She’s such a little charmer as well and smiles and giggles at anyone who comes over and makes a fuss of her. She’s also brilliant at sharing her toys with other children, and offers the toy she’s playing with to her friends when they come over and join her. We’re so lucky, she sleeps brilliantly at night (7pm to 7am) with a good nap around mid morning. I’m really chuffed with how well her social skills are coming on.

My only concern is that she’s still not walking unaided yet. She’s brilliant at cruising around the furniture andpushing her walker round and round the living room and kitchen, but when we try to get her to walk holding our hands, she just sits down and crawls over instead. I’m fairly sure it’s mostly a mixture of laziness and the knowledge that she can get there quicker by crawling, but it does worry me slightly. I know babies do things in their own time and she’ll walk when she’s ready, but I can’t help but wait anxiously for those first steps.

Here’s hoping Isla will see in the new year by walking!


The first time your child is “ill” ill

We’re sending your baby up to hospital.” The words I’d hoped I wouldn’t have to hear, the moment I had been dreading, happened on Wednesday.

I knew all along that babies and toddlers catch bugs and get ill, it’s just one of those things. And we’d been lucky to make it til Isla was nearly 15 months before we had to whisk her up to our local hospital lickity split, but none of this prepared me for how worried and scared I’d be when it actually happened.

Isla had had a cough and cold for a few days prior and it didn’t seem to be bothering her. I’d dropped her off at nursery on Tuesday as normal and she was perfectly fine in herself, giving the nursery staff a big cuddle when she arrived and launched herself straight into playing. But a couple of hours before I was due to pick her up, the nursery rang to say her cough was worse and she had a temperature. She slept well that night but the next day she wasn’t herself at all. She showed no interest in playing or reading and only wanted to cuddle me. I got her a doctors appointment and she was diagnosed with a chest infection and given antibiotics and an inhaler. But later her temperature went up to nearly 40degrees so we went back to the doctors, only to be told we were being referred to the paediatric ward at our local hospital that evening.

I was so scared. I’ve read far too many horror stories about children being misdiagnosed (damn you Daily Mail) and was terrified my little girl was seriously ill. Even worse, Hubs was down in London, half way back from a business trip to Belgium. Luckily our hospital was wonderful and we were really well looked after. Her blood oxygen levels, temperature and heart rate were monitored and weren’t quite satisfactory enough for us to go home after a few hours so she was monitored through the night too. None of us got any sleep on the noisy children’s ward, but luckily Isla improved massively through the night and by morning, was back to her usual cheeky self with all her vitals back to normal. We were back home by lunchtime with instructions to keep up the inhaler for 3 days.

Seeing Isla so unlike herself and lethargic has been horrible and while I’m not daft enough to think she’ll never get poorly again, I hope we’ll never have to see the inside of the children’s ward again.


The Old Life vs The New Life

Me as a party girl back in 2012

This morning I was thinking back to my life BC (before child), and I wondered if I would trade this life for that? 
I have to admit, yes there are certain aspects of my life I’d like to have back. My figure for a start. I was a size 8 BC and I’d love to look like this in my LBD again. While I’m still a size 8 top, I haven’t been able to get rid of my mummy tummy due to my reluctance to stop eating chocolate and carbs so I’m a size 12 in jeans now.  I’d happily keep my bigger boobs though! While my boobs have gone from a pre-baby 32B to a 34DD (while I was pregnant and breastfeeding they were huge!) now they’ve settled into a reasonable 34B/C. I was also lucky enough to not get any stretchmarks.

As awful as this sounds, I also miss my freedom. Weekends back then either consisted of visits to  Hubs or my family, nights out with friends or date nights with Hubs. Now we very rarely have date nights out as we live so far away from our family who can babysit. Nights out are very rare because I frankly can’t afford it now I’m only working a few hours a week and also I can’t be doing with hangovers  when I’m chasing after Isla!

Also trips out, however brief, have to be planned with military organisation. Even for a quick trip to the shop I have to check the changing bag to make sure there’s enough nappies, wipes, a drink, snacks and a change of clothes for Isla just in case. Also as mentioned in a previous post, I have to try and schedule any sojourns out of the house around her naps. 

Sometimes, the amount of responsibility involved in raising Isla overwhelms me. There are times when I feel like I’m still a naive 22 year old, and how can I be responsible for bringing up and caring for a tiny child? I have to remind myself that I’m nearly 30, married with a baby and a mortgage. 

But all it takes is one look at my beautiful baby girl and I know I wouldn’t change it for the world!


All that she wants is another baby…erm…

Now that Isla is a year old, we’re constantly fielding the “are you having another one?” question. As I said before, the answer to this varies on a day to day basis. On bad days, I never ever want to go back the sleepless nights, black tar-like nappies and constant breastfeeding, especially chasing around after a toddler while doing it. On other days, when Isla is being a little angel, I think it’d be lovely to have another child to complete the set – when Isla is at least 4. Hubs thinks the same as me, on good days he’d love a little brother for Isla, whereas whenever we see families struggling with their brood, we exchange a look that says “no way. No chance.”

I’m currently in the ‘No more children’ camp, one of the reasons is because my pregnancy was quite tough, up until week 20/21 I struggled with terrible morning sickness and was constantly exhausted, as though I’d run a marathon on no sleep, and I suffered with back and round ligament pain in the third trimester. Just getting up and going to work was tough, and I was in bed by 7.30 in the evenings. I wonder how the hell mothers cope with the difficulties of pregnancy while caring for toddlers.

I often watch my friends with more than one child and wonder how they do it. The age differences between their children vary between 17 months and three years, and it looks hard work at all ages! Plus there’s Second Child Syndrome, which I’ve witnessed with quite a few people’s second or middle children. Aside from the period of sleep regression, we’ve been so lucky with Isla as she’s such a happy, sociable, placid little girl and it worries me that our next one could be a nightmare!

Then there’s the fact that twins run in our family. I don’t want three children, I’ve always wanted two and that’s it. If I’m chasing after a toddler while coping with a twin pregnancy and then newborn twins I’ll probably lose my mind.

As for her being an only child, I don’t think we’d have to worry about her being lonely as she goes to nursery and has friends her own age, so she gets plenty of interaction with other kids.

Plus I have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and we needed help to have Isla, and the older I get, the harder it’ll be to have another child, so we can’t wait too long to make the decision. But if we have another one now I feel like I won’t be able to enjoy Isla’s baby years as I’ll be tending to the needs of a newborn.

But for now, the jury is still out. Just don’t ask me when we’re having another one or you’ll find yourself on the receiving end of a good slap!