As Poppy is four months old now I’ll do a quick overview of being pregnant, the birth and very first bits.
Being pregnant seems like a lifetime ago already, I didn’t do what everyone told me to do and “enjoy it”, “don’t wish it away” and the classic “baby will come when its ready” which at 41 weeks and six days I was pretty fed up of hearing.
We found out as early as we possibly could that I was pregnant and nine months seemed like an inordinate amount of time to wait before I could meet my baby so I counted down every week and, downloaded every app outlining foetal development, charting her growth by what size fruit she now resembled and waited impatiently for a noticeable bump to appear.
Our 12 week scan date finally arrived and we saw our perfect little bean and saw a tiny heart beating away...incredible!
I was actually growing a little life, a brand new person who would join the rest of the world, form part of the next generation. I say that only with hindsight realising how awesome that actually is, I didn’t really grasp it at the time.
Lots of midwife appointments and weeks of agonising heartburn later, following a straightforward and mercifully short labour, Poppy was born weighing 9lb4oz and 3.30am on the 19th of March 2014.
Lifted out of the birthing pool by her dad and placed straight on my chest.
I’m not sure I could ever do justice in describing how I felt, the long wait was over and I had just endured the most incredible pain I could ever have imagined (sorry anyone who is reading this pregnant with their first but I might as well be honest, it hurts).
In the photos I look tired and overwhelmed, but mixed in with the exhaustion and disbelief was a wholeness I had never felt before.
I didn’t use the previous 9 months to prepare myself for actually having a baby, as ridiculous as that sounds. I’d spent the time either glued to the google search bar searching every minor symptom and twinge or wishing it was my due date already.
So I was pretty much totally unprepared for actually having a real life baby, the car journey home was the most surreal of my entire life.
Rob stopped off at Costa for a strong coffee, after only 20 minutes sleep and the realisation that any form of solid sleep was now a distant memory.
I sat in the back of the car and stared at this tiny little person who was absolutely, totally dependent on me for everything and realised I had no clue whatsoever what I was supposed to do with her. So I did what came naturally to me and I panicked.
I had always wanted to be a mum and I’d nurtured this little being for 293 days, so why now she was born did I feel like I didn’t know her yet? This was also my first experience of “mummy-guilt” which I’m sure I’ll write much more about in later posts.
I felt like I should understand her every move and every cry, instead I called the midwife three times in the first 24 hours...once because I thought she was sleeping too much!
To be quite honest the first six weeks are mainly a blur of constant feeding, changing nappies, trying to figure out the best way to put a baby in a moses basket without waking them, cold tea, rubbish daytime telly, semi-delirium due to lack of sleep, the most stressful visit to Ikea and absolute total wonderment.
Well, time to crack on with mummy-stuff.
Remember: I want to use this forum for stimulate some dialogue with other mums.
So please get in touch.
Cesca Naylor: Dronfield, Derbyshire.