Category: Pregnancy

New Sibling: Preparing your toddler

The first time around, when you bring home your newborn, you are focused on figuring everything out together. Just you and them. The second time around is a little different….

The first time around, when you bring home your newborn, you are focused on figuring everything out together. Just you and them.

The second time around is a little different. As you have a toddler to contend with. You need to make sure that they are comfortable with the new addition to the family and they have an understanding on what is going on.

introducing a newborn to a toddler

I’m no expert, but, Mole seems to be so content with her baby brother, that I thought u’d share with you some tips we did prior to Frankie’s arrival and how we introduced them both.

Tips to introduce your toddler to your newborn during pregnancy

Role Play

Whilst pregnant with Frankie, I gave Mole a baby doll to play with. We was lucky really as she really took to the doll. Together I would teach her how to care for the doll by feeding it a bottle and loving it with kisses and cuddles but most importantly being gentle. If Mole wasn’t interested in the doll that day, then I would pay no attention to it and just leave Mole to play with toys she wanted to instead.introducing a newborn to a toddler

Talking to my tummy

We would have fun and point at my tummy and say “baby” so Mole would get some understanding that there was a baby inside my belly. When Frankie was kicking, i’d let Mole feel his kicks and say “baby”. I doubt she truly understood I had an actual baby inside me but it was a fun bonding session.

Tips to introduce your toddler to your newborn

The first introduction

Personally, I didn’t want Mole present at the hospital. I don’t think its the place for a toddler running around, and I knew I would not have the energy to deal with tantrums if she played up. I wasn’t too sure on how my delivery was going to go too, so I made sure to have childcare in place. It was good to spend time with Frankie getting to know him and as the first few days of a newborn is demanding, I was able to give him my full attention. That being said, it was super hard not to see Mole for a couple of days because I rarely leave her.

Finding Baby

To make the introduction fun for Mole, we turned it into a game of finding baby. Frankie was asleep and settled in his bed so me and Mole went on the hunt for him. When she found him, it must have felt rewarding for her. turning the whole experience into a positive one. The main reason I did this was so she didn’t feel replaced as she might of if I was holding him when she first saw him.introducing a newborn to a toddler

Rewarding good behaviour

Whenever Mole was positive towards Frankie by kissing him or being gentle, we would be really over the top with saying “well done” making her feel like she was being a very good girl and giving her lot’s of attention for the right behaviour.

Solo time together

Mole was use to seeing me alone without Frankie. It had always just been me and her. I felt that it was still important to give her that same experience when possible. I would either do her bedtime one night just me and her or whilst Frankie was napping, we would read books together or do Arts and Crafts.

A lending hand

I really include Mole when it comes to changing Frankie. I ask Mole to get me his nappy or if she wants to sit and help. Obviously if she isn’t interested I would never force her, but she actually seems to find it fun and loves the responsibility.

On nights where i’m solo parenting, I bath Mole first and then bathe Frankie. During Frankie’s bath, I ask Mole if she wants to come and help wash him. Or ask her to choose a book for the bedtime story.

introducing a newborn to a toddler

You will always have that fear during your second pregnancy if you will be able to give both your children the attention they need. The answer is yes you will. You will find your own way of making it work.

If your toddler seems to not be interested when you introduce them to their new sibling. Don’t force anything. Give them time and continue to stick to your routine and give them both praise and attention.

 

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My Birth Story: Frankie

Thursday 12th September, I had a lovely day with Mole. My mum came round and we spent the day baking cakes, doing Arts and Crafts and baking bread. Funnily enough,…

birth storyThursday 12th September, I had a lovely day with Mole. My mum came round and we spent the day baking cakes, doing Arts and Crafts and baking bread. Funnily enough, my mum joked about me going into labour that night because I was non-stop kneading bread and running around after Mole in the garden.

Later that evening, I started to experience a dull, aching pain in my lower back. Not a pain that took my breath away but one where I felt the need to sit down more often. It is completely different when you have a toddler. Your mind is so pre occupied with them that you don’t pay attention to yourself the same.

Knowing I was going into labour

I went to bed feeling okay then at 3:30am I woke up to go to the toilet, as I stood I really felt a tight back pain that seemed to wrap around to my lower stomach. This pain was completely different to any niggles and tightness I’ve felt in this pregnancy before.

I had to make the decision whether to go back to bed and try and get some rest or get ready for the hospital. As I felt the pain come back, I could 100% say it was a contraction. I didn’t want to go back to bed and lie down in case that would have slowed the process down, so I got ready, did my make-up and went downstairs to bounce around on the birthing ball.

At around 4:30am I text Jay to tell him I was going into labour. He sat with me whilst he could time my contractions as by this point it was too painful for me to concentrate timing them myself and they felt very regular. We decided to get Mole up and ready for her stay at her Grandmas, got in the car and dropped her off on route to the hospital.

Heading to the hospitalBirth Story

We arrived at the hospital at 5:45am. I was waddling across the car park and having to keep sitting down in the corridor whilst I had a contraction, as they were too painful to walk through. The maternity ward was upstairs, so we finally got seen at 6:00am.

I was doing my best to stay stood up to help him move lower down. After having a 12-hour labour with Mole, I was doing all that I could to avoid that.

Every time a contraction came, I would breathe in for 10 seconds and then out again for 10 seconds. Keeping focused helped me to stay in control. A lady once told me that she imagined a big red balloon on the sea, every time she breathed in the balloon moved towards her and breathing out the balloon moved away. For some reason, this was all I could concentrate on and I feel it helped me to beat the painkillers and keep my head focused.

When the Midwife examined me, I was shocked to hear her say 9-10cm! I was honestly expecting her to say 3cm!

It was too late for any painkillers and almost too late to run the bath for a water birth. I’m so glad Jay was there to stress to the midwife to run the bath and he helped me walk across as a water birth really helps with the pain.

That excruciating pain hit me and I knew it was time to push.

Frankie is here!birth story

At 6:11am, Friday 13th September, I had Frankie in my arms. This time around, I felt that rush of love straight away. He looked so perfect and I couldn’t wait to get him home to meet his sister. I was also in a lot of shock from my 11-minute labour. Frankie weighed a healthy 8lb 4.

Frankie had his check and all was okay other than his heart murmur and he had the jitters from mucous and the quick delivery. We had to stay in an extra night until he got the all clear.

When pregnant with Frankie, I worried that I’ll be able to love him as much as I love Mole. But, you can. Your heart can stretch even more than you would have ever thought possible!

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My Birth Story: Molly

I remember being pregnant with Mole and as it was my first time going through the experience, when I reached my third trimester, all I was doing was watching births…

I remember being pregnant with Mole and as it was my first time going through the experience, when I reached my third trimester, all I was doing was watching births on the TV or reading birth stories on blog posts.

In my mind, reading everyones birth stories made me feel prepared. Like I knew every possibility that could happen to me. The truth is, when you are in that moment of giving birth, it doesn’t matter how many blogs you have read you still don’t know what you are in for!pink mole birth story

Hitting Full Term 

I had hit 40 weeks and 3 days, already had a sweep and was passing time bouncing around on a yoga ball or dancing. (YouTube labour dance).  I felt completely normal, the house had already been fully nested to the extreme. We have a black Labrador and you would not have even been able to have found one dog hair. Every twinge I felt was nothing out of the ordinary.

That night, I crept into the spare bedroom to enjoy a good starfish sleep. But, I just couldn’t sleep. My eyes were wide open! There is nothing more annoying than when you are absolutely shattered yet you can’t sleep. Especially knowing how sacred sleep was going to be for me soon. I pretty much got about an hour. 

The very early stages of labour

In the morning, my hair was so greasy and frizzy. I just thought I had left conditioner in it from the shower. Then my skin was the same. All greasy and weird feeling. my make-up wasn’t going on right and I looked a mess. Very similar to what I go through when my hormones are all over the place before that time of the month. I rang my mum and told her, there is something not right with me today. Weird how I just knew.

Shortly after I passed my mucous plus. (Gross I know, and maybe TMI for you.) I remember thinking “ohhhhhhh it’s all happening”.

Then, I felt like I needed the toilet. But I couldn’t stop needing the toilet. It was driving me crazy because nothing was happening. I just kept needing it.

I played on the PlayStation for a while (also winning a game of Fortnight…does it still count even if I hid under a bridge for half of the game?) Contractions were definitely present. The hospital told me to wait until they were regular before I dropped in.

I don’t even remember the route to the hospital, but I do remember contracting whilst crossing the road and needing to sit down on the zebra crossing. I couldn’t for the life of me walk through the pain. 

Arriving at the hospital

The staff sent me to a room where I could rest on a bed and eat some food. They told me I was far too smiley to be in hospital just yet so they advised me to go back home. I insisted that I was just a smiley person and this is my awkward, nervous smile but they still said to go home. Whilst putting my coat and shoes on, I then projectile vomited everywhere. This was non stop for a good while.

My labour lasted for 12 hours. I kept on going back and forth from the hot bath they had set up in the bathroom. As soon as I went into the water, it relieved my pain. I highly recommend it to anyone!

The 12 hours dragged on and on. I had my mum and Jay sat watching Homeland eating packets of crips and drinking cups of tea like they were having a great time.

For pain relief I had Pethidine. Oh that was lovely in my legs. Again, I highly recommend it. It just feels like someone has given you a dead leg.

Established Labourpink mole birth story

The midwives had me try all sorts of positions on the bed. I must have looked like some weird origami. I demanded to go back in the bath. I felt way too exposed on the bed and the warmth of the water soothed my pain. 

4:26am the Mole was born. She weight 7,11lbs and looked absolutely beautiful. I was actually stood up in the bath screaming. I have no idea how on tv all the mothers are silent giving birth. One thing I remember was seeing how blue her eyes were and just thinking wow. She is actually gorgeous. They took her pretty quickly to be checked and I was still in the bath like a lump. There was so much blood I thought the placenta had come out!

After Birth

There were still no signs of my placenta making an appearance so the midwife called for help. I had a lady massage my tummy for a good while and they discussed theatre. I knew there was no way on this Earth I was going to go through a natural childbirth and then face surgery. I got on the gas and air and gave it my all.

Stitches were needed too and by this point, I felt like I had just given up. I was sick of being messed with and just wanted to spend time with my baby. 

All that night/day, I stayed away just watching Molly. I couldn’t take my eyes off her. 

I stayed in an extra day to get to grips with breastfeeding. When it was time to go home I felt so relieved. There is nothing like the comfort of your own home.

 

 

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First and second pregnancy: Differences I’ve noticed

No two pregnancies are the same however, in my mind, I still believed that the whole pregnancy experience would be similar. But I was wrong. The second time around, everything…

No two pregnancies are the same however, in my mind, I still believed that the whole pregnancy experience would be similar. But I was wrong. The second time around, everything has been different.

Here is how:

comparing two pregnancies

Finding Out

The first time around, I find out I was pregnant pretty much straight away. I just had that feeling. Even taking tests that were displaying as negative I still strongly believed I was pregnant.

The second time, I didn’t find out I was pregnant until around 10 weeks. The thought didn’t even cross my mind. I put it down to being so busy all the time with Mole.

Time

Time seems to go so much slower when you are pregnant for the first time. It feels like years waiting for a midwife appointment and counting down the weeks till your next trimester drags on and on. Now, I can not keep up with my midwife appointments. I feel like I have blinked and already it is single figure weeks countdown.

Sickness

My first pregnancy I was lucky enough to not experience morning sickness. This time, i’ve had days where just turning my head would make me want to throw up.

Restcomparing two pregnancies

During my first pregnancy I could take a nap when I wanted or watch a film on the sofa but, oh no, not the second time around. I am running around after Mole at a soft play centre or running up and down the stairs to change her or I am looking like I am on Super Market Sweep trying to get my shopping done before Moles patience time bomb goes off.

Fitness

The advice I was given during my first pregnancy was to “take it easy”. I spoke to a midwife about exercising it was frowned upon. I was in good health and had always exercise so taking the time off did not sit well with me mentally and I gained a lot of weight too. One of the things I said to myself was, if it was to go through a pregnancy again, I want to be as active as possible. When asking midwives now about doing a workout, I received a completely different reaction. A positive one. I have been able to workout without a guilty conscience and thoroughly enjoy feeling healthy and active.

Anxietycomparing two pregnancies

Every little twinge during my first pregnancy I was convinced I was going into labour or something was wrong. This time, I have been able to relax more and after knowing what a contraction really does feel like, I am not rushing down to A&E or ringing my midwife.

Bump Size

I was told that the second time around your bump is usually bigger as your stomach muscles have stretched. As I have been eating healthier and working out during this pregnancy, my bump is no where near as big as it was the first time. I feel like I need to take more photos of the progression as I get so busy with Mole or I don’t have the energy to take any. First time around my camera roll was full of bump photos.

 

 

 

Zoe

xx

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Eating For Two Calorie Myth In Pregnancy

“You can eat for two now!” … hmmm not quite. This is a huge, common response when you announce you are pregnant. It’s like it is used as an excuse…

“You can eat for two now!”hmmm not quite.

Eating for two pregnancy

This is a huge, common response when you announce you are pregnant. It’s like it is used as an excuse to eat whatever you want and how much of that you want. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good treat, and have definitely been treating myself a lot more than I usually would when it comes to food. But, the whole “eating for two” is a myth. Any you may be shocked to find out how many calories it is that you actually need extra whilst growing a baby. The Guardian states that around 15-20% of pregnant women now are overweight or obese.

The old fashioned wayeating for two myths pregnancy

Talking to my mum or grandparents about pregnancy almost turns into a battle of different beliefs. It’s like you can’t mention that you had a work out in the gym to them without their jaw dropping to the floor and you get a lecture about how you should be taking it easy. I even find myself telling them that I only went on a light walk, when really I was squatting my near enough my own body weight on my back as a warm up.

When it comes to diet, they have a strong belief that you should be eating for two. I mean, my baby is currently the size of an avocado. Why would it need a full portion of food?

What you should be eating

According to the NHS, there is no need to eat for two during pregnancy, even if you are expecting twins or triplets. The original idea behind eating for two was to increase your energy.

There is no need to eat for two during pregnancy, even if you are expecting twins or triplets

During the first 6 months of your pregnancy you do not even need to only drink full fat milk, another common myth.  Eating for two pregnancy pink mole

Only in the last 3 months of pregnancy do you need to increase your calories by 200 a day. When you work it out, that isn’t actually a whole lot extra. Most people consume more calories a day than recommended too, without adding in the extra.

It is recommended that you should do at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day. Swimming and walking are a great way to keep fit. If you already are a physically active person like me, you will have more of an idea on how to tone your workouts down. Obviously it isn’t advised that if you have never been inside a gym before to start now and complete a huge workout. You should start off with no more than three 15 minute workouts a week.

eating for two pregnancy pink mole

 

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First Trimester with a 1 year old

Considering I have been pregnant before, I assumed that the first trimester of pregnancy would have been similar to that experience. I was wrong… First Trimester with Mole My first…

Considering I have been pregnant before, I assumed that the first trimester of pregnancy would have been similar to that experience. I was wrong…

2 under 2 pregnancy

First Trimester with Mole

My first trimester with Mole seemed to drag on for ages! I found out when I was 4 weeks pregnant and I went for a scan at 6 weeks and saw my little Mole Bean on the screen. I waited to tell my family after 12 weeks and to my that felt like half a year.

My symptoms were mainly fatigue. I had never felt tiredness like it. To the point where standing up in a shower was too much.

Everything else was a breeze. I had gone shopping and got cute baby items and took bump photos every single day. I would wear tight clothes in the hope of being able to show off my pregnancy bloat as if I was 30 weeks pregnant haha.

First Trimester with Baby Number 2

My experience this time has been different. I found out when I was 9 weeks pregnant by taking a test, then I went for a private scan at 10 weeks. Even this experience was new to me. I actually was surprised by a little baby waving and somersaulting around on the screen and feeling shocked that the little baby was in my belly. I never got that feeling with Mole as she was scanned to early and we went for private scans nearly every week, so we could she her gradually develop. That’s when this pregnancy really hit me it was real.

That’s when this pregnancy really hit me it was real

2 under 2 pregnancy

The symptoms this time around have been very hard. The nausea was almost unbearable. And a completely different story having a baby turning one to look after. All I wanted to do was lie down as any movement made me feel like throwing up.

I don’t think this time around I have allowed myself to be tired and take a break. Having a one year old is hard work. Mole wants to be constantly entertained and in between all of that, she has to be changed and fed. As soon as she would go for her nap, I wouldn’t be able to relax as the house looks like it has been tipped upside down. Once I switch the hoover on thats it, i’m still cleaning an hour later.  Thanks Mrs Hinch.

I don’t think this time around my boyfriend has had a full understanding of my tiredness either. As I don’t work it can be seen as if I literally get to sit around watching TV all day which could not be further from the truth. Sometimes I feel I could catch more of a break if I was back at work!

Bad news

I received bad news at one of my scans which was I had a haemorrhage, where the placenta had started to come away from the wall. I was told to be on bed rest for a few weeks so they could monitor if the bleed has gone down rather than got bigger. Obviously bed rest with a one year old was not going to happen. I did try to stay in as much as possible with Mole and it was as if she knew at times because she was so good for me. The best thing for Mole whilst I have been in my first trimester is her baby classes. There is so much for her to do at them, I can see how happy she is and by the time her classes have finished she is ready for a nap. So there has been less pressure on myself entertaining her for the full day.

Gym

As most of you know, one of my biggest hobbies is the gym. The gym for me is “my time”. Hearing I was to be on bed rest did not feel great. I had to take some time off but then was back at it after the good news. This pregnancy is different as I’m not loving my tummy getting bigger. I have probably only taken 2 photos so far and I am 16 weeks. It feels a little strange to get my head into this new chapter as I was well into my post-partum fitness goals.

Hunger

This time, I have been SO HUNGRY! Omg, I just do not feel full. Ever. Poor Mole, I even start to pick at her food whilst she is taking so long to eat it. I am out of control. My last pregnancy, one of my biggest symptoms was having no appetite. I couldn’t look at any type of food and feel hungry. This time wow, even broccoli or salad gets my tastebuds going.

Time

Wow 16 weeks already. Time is flying! To the point where I can’t keep up with it. Every time I go for an appointment or scan, I feel like it was only just yesterday since being there. Im super lucky to have Mole in nursery because appointments can happen at the shortest of notice sometimes and I have family here who could baby sit her whilst i’m gone.

Mole

My life with Mole is so good now. I feel very blessed. I get a little anxious that I may change how good things are between us in a negative way. I hope she enjoys being a big sister. When I go out shopping, I can’t bring myself to buy anything for the second baby as I get guilty not buying anything for Mole.

I have a private scan booked this week to hopefully find out the gender of the baby. I feel like this time around it’s going to be a boy. Once I have found out, I know i’ll be on the baby train looking at nursery decor and clothes.

Thanks for reading

Zoe xx

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