Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Another child defies me...

So apparently one strong minded child isn't enough and Baby B-K, despite my whispering instructions, decided not to come out today on my sweep-stake guess. No, no, he or she fancies staying put for a while longer and putting on a few extra pounds (wince).

Though to be fair, perhaps we actually just have a very considerate baby since the last 2 days haven't been the easiest. I had to go and get Mabel from nursery on Monday poorly. I think she has her last molars coming through since keeps saying, "sore cheek" but also just has the virus that I think has been going round everyone (high temp, not eating etc). We spent Monday afternoon tucked up under a blanket watching t.v and she stayed at home again yesterday. Luckily she got a much better night sleep last night so hoping the worst is past. 

Granny and I took her for a walk and some fresh air at the park yesterday afternoon (labour inducing mechanism no. 1 - tick). It wasn't our finest moment since we didn't take the pram and she very quickly decided walking wasn't for her. Granny ended up carrying her (it was a toss up of who was the more incapable) but we unfortunately passed a very wet slide which did not go unnoticed. Poor Granny ended up climbing up very muddy steps to find she then didn't really slide down on account of the wet. Made worse by the tantrum which followed when we dashed away, in what was the start of rain, before a second go.

But she has started eating again and has been much better. More smiles, more constant climbing and lots of resistance to basic requests...
In fact this morning the word 'no' was in full force and I had to literally wrestle her doll's pram from her at the door to the car so she was definitely going back to nursery. I did wonder what the hell I looked like, battling with wind and rain, 9 months+ pregnant, carrying a toddler who was in turn carrying a pram / rabbit / doll. I swear she senses my weakness because I would normally resort to raisin bribery but she isn't quite 100% on food so wasn't interested,
"Er not hungry thanks, I will take the pram option".
"We can't take the pram in the car, how about a book?" I tried (actually thinking, maybe the pram could come in the car?)
"Pram, pram, pram" (I hear what you are saying but I am going to repeatedly shout the word pram in the hope you get the message that the only thing I am interested in is this pram. And yes I realise it might be tricky to use in the car but come on, lets give it a go).

After dropping her off I decided I was bored of all the sitting around waiting so went for a swim. Even the 16 year old on reception at the pool asked if I was planning to give birth today (rude). He followed it up with,
"Innit dead weird that there is a human in there...."
"Hmmm yeah" I responded (note to self: must get better at talking to youths)

I have since followed it up with a hill walk and I do actually feel loads better for getting moving. Did I mention that at my last midwife appointment my slightly nuts Chinese midwife gave me a live demonstration of how to ensure I sat with my pelvis low to encourage the baby to engage and then talked for some time about having a 'polite word' with my husband since all they use to induce you is a prosthetic version of semen (unsure if that is spelt right, can't say I have ever written it before).

A polite word. Love it. It was more than a little awkward.

Anyhow G Kisby has been, "working late" in the evenings ever since, sending me up to bed alone saying he 'won't be long'. And I don't think I helped last night by reading up on yoga positions that could help and spending the entire episode of 'Grand Designs' in a highly unattractive position on the front room floor.   

On a much more pleasant note, Granny brought round the new babies blanket she has been knitting yesterday and we love it. I chose the colours (o.k so they are more suited to a boy) and it is a little big for a pram but chunky, soft and will be used for years to come I'm sure. 

She is so unconvinced of the colours that another is being knitted as we speak!

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Due date came...and passed!

So to celebrate the passing of our due date (did no-one tell baby BK) we spent Saturday morning clearing out the garage to find a washing machine (stored at the back) for Mark Bryce. I say ‘we’, G Kisby did most of the work whilst Mark and I stayed inside in the warmth with Mabel. It was the first properly icy day which was unfortunate since he couldn’t find his gloves. He ended up wearing a colourful pair of crotcheted hand warmers of mine. Very funny.

I designed a great activity for Mabel this week for which she had absolutely no interest. I added more pipe cleaners, I upped my own enthusiasm…nothing. She pretty much laughed in the face of my planning, threw them on the floor and walked of asking for Peppa Pig (for a change). I tried another this weekend literally involving some cleaned out egg shells, a spoon and tupperwear. About 25 mins later she was still loving the texture, crushing them between her fingers and pouring them in and out of her tub. Turns out simple wins yet again. I won't learn (obviously).

We then drove over to Manchester and went out for a gorgeous meal with Fee and Al. None of us could remember the last time we went out (though we see each other all the time it tends to be to eat in) so it was a proper treat and potentially the last one for a short while. The food was great, the wine ditto (apparently) and we laughed a lot (as always). The only downside were the very tight trousers I squeezed myself into which became very uncomfortable after a chocolate soufflé. Oh and the lack of sleep that followed.

Mabel has caught my cold (or vice versa?) and was really unsettled. It doesn’t take much to disturb me currently so I lay awake wondering just how many times I could go for a wee when I didn’t actually need one. She then woke up at 4.30 and refused to go back to sleep. We had her in our bed but the, “That is Daddy’s back….Mabel cough…Mummy’s sleeping…” commentary soon became, “Mabel big jump…” at which G Kisby drew the line. Mum’s paranoia about my being tired resulted in her whipping her out for a cuddle with her Granny (all went quiet and dark as Mabel apparently then went back to sleep for a few hours…what the hell).

Anyhow today we all felt slightly worse for wear. Mabel managed to keep smiling through swimming but was a bit shivery and then went for her second nap of the day. I went for a huge 2.5hr sleep this afternoon after which I felt loads better. I get a bit nervous when I don’t feel great since I know labour could start any time now (yes the probability rises every day now, I get it Fee).

I have repainted my toe nails (as well as possible), shaved my legs again (surely the last time I have to do such random moves to reach my legs) and promised to stay close to home now. I must look huge since pretty much everyone I meet in public comments. In some ways this is quite pleasant and a good conversation starter. However, I am slightly perturbed by how risky people are with their comments; “Gosh you look you are about to have that baby…you can’t have long to go….wow that is a big bump”. Really tempted to reply with, “no I am only 6 months” or even, “what this? Leftover baby weight from my first unfortunately”.

Come on baby BK we are all desperate to meet you (Tuesday 30th, girl, 8.2oz is my guess for the record. G Kisby has gone for Friday 2nd, boy, 8.4oz).

Monday, 22 October 2012

Wedding gamble paid off...

Last weekend, at the late stage of 38 weeks pregnant, we travelled down to Hastings to attend the wedding of 2 of our best friends, Ben and Jen. 

Now said friends had said for a long time that they didn't expect us to come but we really didn't want to miss it.  They have been really good friends for a long time (G Kisby started infant school with Ben), G Kisby was to be best man and I was asked to do a reading. 
And aside from all that 2 years ago they changed their flights to return from India where they were travelling to come to our wedding and surprised us by turning up the night before, which was just fab.

We pretty much couldn't find anyone (bar our immediate friends who were somewhat biased) who thought it was a good idea for us to travel so far from home. So much so that I almost doubted the decision myself at times. 

But last Friday armed with hospital bag, local hospital details, car seat, midwife notes and a pillow to try and get comfy for the 5.5 hour journey we head off on our trip. Mabel was happily packed up for a weekend at one of her favourite places. Remembering that she was off to Granny's she awoke on Friday morning with the word, "Kenkie" followed shortly thereafter by a run down of all those she would be seeing. So lovely and so much easier to know how much she loves being there (as always, huge thanks family).

We stayed with a group of friends in a lodge not far from the church and split up on the Friday night with the boys heading into Brighton (where they live) for drinks and a curry with Ben. Us girls stayed closer to 'home', and notably had a slightly lower key evening.

The day of the wedding started with a fairly stressful phone call to say that Jen (the bride) had been in a car crash. It was actually a pretty bad head on collision involving 5 cars but thank goodness she walked away with bruising and whip lash. It could have been much worse. The wedding was put back an hour but still went ahead. And luckily Jen's gorgeous dress covered most of the horrendous bruising that was starting. 

JB074And it was just ace, we are so so glad we didn't miss it. The church was lit by candles which made the rainy / dark day really romantic. Jen arrived with 6 little bridesmaids dressed in white crotchet dresses and gold pumps. There were splashes of colour in an otherwise neutral scheme (every bridesmaid and Jen herself held different bunches of wild flowers grown at her parent's farm) and Jen looked stunning in a slinky satin dress with a low back, pearls and red lipstick. A kind of combination of Hollywood glamour with 1950's vintage. Ben has always been keen to portray an image of the 'non committal' guy and to be fair for a long time Jen likewise so it was so fab to watch them finally tie the knot and look so in love. 

Afterwards we went back to Jen's parent's farm where they had a huge marquee. The wedding was all about them (which is exactly how it should be) including curry for dinner (yum), a huge homemade cake table, tons of wine flowing and dancing well into the early hours. Their first dance was from Pulp Fiction, I have never seen a dance floor fill so quickly.

JB110G Kisby pulled off a brilliant best man's speech. I think I was more nervous than him and had to shut myself up asking if he was o.k prior. I just think there is a lot of pressure on doing a funny speech, not something I would relish I have to say. However, Ben had (unfortunately for him) provided some excellent pictorial content and a cleverly constructed PowerPoint presentation alongside some great timing on the delivery made for lots of laughs (reaction below)...


The only slight panic on the night came from my body giving me a reminder that this baby is getting ready to come out. At 9ish I suddenly felt a bit of a mini 'gush' and absolutely panicked. After discretely checking the cushion on the seat I was sitting on for damage I dashed to the toilet. I stood there looking down in fear, my tights were definitely wet and I am pretty sure it wasn't wee. I didn't genuinely think we were going to have a Southern baby, nor had I any way of getting G Kisby to help me if it was my waters and they continued to flow down my leg. Luckily nothing else happened but it did give me a jolt and we left shortly afterwards in order to get an early night for a 6am start to drive home. Felt we were on borrowed time.

Nothing else has happened since. I did put the experience down to bladder failure (unfortunate) since I thought a 'show' had to include blood. However, looking on the Internet I do wonder if that is what it was and actually that it doesn't mean that labour is immediately imminent, though obviously it is pretty much on the cards anytime. 

I am now taking it 'slightly' easier (no more swimming for me). Can't believe that we are now due in 5 days, though we both think that I might be overdue. 
The hypnobirthing books are back out and I am trying to keep focusing on natural, positive thoughts so I don't scare myself. 

We are all ready and waiting (much more prepared than with Mabel). I can't imagine it happening but I know that it will anytime...too too exciting!

Will update the blog as and when there are any developments...

Monday, 15 October 2012

Wouldn't want to appear rude....

Last week I went into Leeds for my hair cut. I headed for the most central car park I knew only to remember that in the days when I parked there I used to claim expenses and that £12 for 4 hours was no longer acceptable. However, 30 minutes, two bad decisions involving one way roads and a couple of bus only lanes later, I panicked realising I was about to hit the Leeds ring road AGAIN (horrible city to drive round) and drove into another car park slightly further away. For the privilege I paid £14 to walk further, curses.

Anyhow, upon leaving said car park I came across a large post office branch and needing an ISA application form nipped in. Unable to find one I resorted to asking an eager looking member of staff manning a post near the door,
"Ooh it is Keith you need for financial applications, I will find him for you" came the response.
I tried explaining that I was now in a rush (due to said car parking issues) and could I not just get a form. Apparently not and I was shepherded to a table behind a small screen to wait. Overcome with politeness I sat and duly waited for Keith who bounded out like someone had just announced Christmas had arrived early.

Think 'Keith' from The Office looks wise but with all the optimistic enthusiasm of Chegwin.

Small talk over he produced his one pager of financial products.
It was a spreadsheet of small print under titles like 'product', 'withdrawals' etc. Inwardly groaning I decided to give him a minute to give me an overview then ask again for the form.
Keith had other ideas and decided he would talk me through the entire sheet. Column by flaming column.

I glanced around to check this wasn't some sort of practical joke.
He was literally reading out the sheet to me. I would have been there days.
"O.k as I mentioned I am in a bit of a rush so could I just grab the application form..." I tried.

I am not sure what training he had recently been on around keeping the potential customer in the branch but his approach to this challenge ignore me.
Seriously, he just carried on speaking without taking a breath.
Right, next line of the spreadsheet I thought and I am going in again. Still being polite, obviously.

"Unfortunately I am going to have to go so do you have any application forms?" I apologised
"Where are you going?" came the response
" Er to a hair appointment" I replied
"Why?" I heard him say

"Well it's just that I won't get the chance again for a while because I am due to have a baby..." I started to justify
"Where do you go?" he responded.
Oh my god. Was he seriously checking out the validity of my excuse. I should have told him to mind his own business, left without the form, ignored the question. 

Did I? 
No, instead I threw back my answer, almost too eager to prove it wasn't a lie (what the hell).

Small talk resumed ('must keep customer in branch' mantra now almost audible).
I was finding it ever more difficult to escape without sounding rude when he was trying so hard.
Eventually he ran dry (maybe it was the fact I was now pretty much sitting on the arm of my chair, bag on shoulder).
"O.k if you could just sign here then" he said passing me a 10 page document.
"Er, sign for what?" I questioned
"Oh just to say that you have had financial advice today and agree to our next meeting" the latter part tailing off in volume.

Losing the will to live I had to stop it getting any worse,
"Sorry (???) I am due a baby in two weeks, I shan't be coming to Leeds anytime soon and I haven't had any financial advice that I know of, please can I just have the form?" Was I actually begging?

"O.k here it is. Why don't you fill it in during your hair appointment then pop back on your way home?" a last ditch attempt to fulfill his quota.
"O.k no problem I will do that" I said standing.
"So do you have all your previous ISA details with you so you can say where the transfer is coming from?"
Of course I didn't. My shoulders slumped. "No"
"Well you will have to nip back then to bring it in, do you want to put a time in the diary?"
"Is there no way I can just post it?" I suggested.

I felt awful. I could see the look of defeat in his eyes. It was such a valiant attempt for a sale, such a desperate bid to prove that he had secured the business. The 10 page document sat unsigned on the table in front of us.

"Yes" came his response, "It has a freepost envelope at the back..." and with that I was off in a flash.

Now late I ran (walked briskly if G Kisby or Granny is reading) to my hair appointment. 

I have got to do something about this need to be polite!

Friday, 5 October 2012

Did anyone ever claim pregnancy was glamorous?

If so, they were very much mistaken.

This pregnancy has possibly been even less so than last time, due to a number of factors:

- I am bigger than last time. There is no getting away from it, whether it is less exercise (can't fit in that morning swim before work anymore), more cake (might as well, I am fat anyway) or that you stretch more easily (nice). Either way I am not nearly as neat.

- As a result my work maternity trousers only zipped up until about 6 months in rather than until the end as with Mabel. I hate buying maternity wear so decided, in my wisdom (and early morning haste) to still wear said trousers but with a long top so I could leave them completely unzipped. Throughout the day I was left to fully experience the error of my judgement as my trousers literally fell down every time I stood up. Not only that, the zip dug into the very bottom of my tummy (hard to rub that area in public to relieve the soreness) and I tripped over more than once because they were no longer the right length. Big learning there for me.

Phillips' Milk of Magnesia Liquid 200ml- Constipation is not good. During this pregnancy I went 9 days, that's right, 9 days without. During that time G Kisby fed me 2 curry takeaways (he was in his element with suggesting that solution every other day). They remained in place and just made things worse. I worried there was a blockage but a tiny pellet on day nine reassured me this wasn't the case (sorry too much?) I drank tons of Fibregel, I ate loads of fruit, I spent an unprecedented amount of time on the toilet 'trying', to no avail. In the end I went to the doctors and begged for a laxative. I got one...3 days later it still didn't work. But there was light at the end of the tunnel (wrong analogy to use there). Milk of magnesia, no carbs (in fact, I was getting such bad cramp after eating that I went to a fruit and water only diet). No medical advice led to this just the power of Fee on Google (though I did check with my midwife first that a couple of days on fruit wouldn't do any harm). I drank from the bottle and the next day - well lets just say once I started.Glad to report hasn't been as bad since. 

- Fat feet. Had to buy a whole size bigger when getting new shoes for the wedding we went to. My little trotters are just porky. 

- My belly button could seriously be used as a coat hook. It is just not nice looking and despite wearing a band and maternity top it still seems to poke its way through.

We are obviously thrilled to be pregnant, we feel blessed to be able to have children in the first place, very lucky to only have such minor complaints and wouldn't change it for the world. Pregnancy is amazing, life changing and many other great things.

But is not. 3 weeks to go...too exciting!