All the credit to my mum for this one, she took it on her phone and sent it to me before she went to work on Saturday morning. Lovely view along the estuary front in Lytham.
This week I’ve chosen a photo that makes my heart happy.
At 5 and a half weeks old we’re getting smiles. What’s more I actually managed to capture the end of one on camera, with his oldest brother just in the background.
His brothers love him very much and are always wanting to kiss and hug him, no matter what he’s doing. Which is lovely, but when I’m trying to feed him it can get a bit difficult. His latch isn’t the greatest any way and so having them all over him can sometimes really hurt me!
The last three days have been awful, Flixster has been on a breastfeeding (nursing) strike. It’s been awful. Before the strike started we would feed each morning when he woke around 5am, then sometimes during the day if he asked for it by snuggling into me then often a quick feed in the later afternoon when he was tired, or if we were out and about and needed a little snack, a breastfeed would do the trick and relieve the immediate hunger.
Then all of a sudden he stopped feeding. It was like he’d never ever ever fed from me before. When I offered him the first morning he turned away. I offered again and he bit me hard and then just turned away again. He just wouldn’t feed, but I wasn’t that bothered as I thought I’d just feed him later in the day. But later came and he still wouldn’t feed. By now I just tried not to think about it, I thought the more I stressed about him not feeding the more he’d pick up on it.
As Flixster is now 14 months old my breasts never feel full anymore so I didn’t feel the need to express any milk off to comfort. If you were exclusively breastfeeding it would be advisable to express at normal feeding times if baby goes through a feeding strike so that the strike wouldn’t affect the supply and to avoid blocked ducts or even worse mastitis.
The next day came and went and still Flixster wouldn’t feed, he just kept refusing, turning away, trying to get away, even morning snuggles weren’t persuading him to feed. That was our special time together and now I couldn’t even offer him my milk.
By now I was worrying that this was the end of our journey, I wasn’t ready to stop feeding, inside I was crying. Desperately wishing I’d paid more attention to the last feed we had together, paid more attention to the way he looked at me. The way his tiny hand gently stroked me as I fed him. I’d missed it, I’d missed our last breastfeed together and now it was gone. The chapter was ending and I’d missed it.
By day three I told myself I had to start accepting that it was probably over. With a heavy heart I offered a feed again in the morning and again it was refused.
Today I went along to the breastfeeding group as normal, hoping against hope that if Flixster saw other babies feeding he might remember what to do, might remember our special snuggly morning cuddles. He didn’t, I offered at group and he refused, point-blank refused. I could have cried right there and then. The amazing lady who runs the group suggested I expressed a little milk off and tried to get it onto his lips. I gently hand expressed some milk and dropped it onto his mouth which wasn’t easy with him turning away. At first I don’t think he noticed, I did it again and he licked it off. All of a sudden I almost saw his brain click into action, he turned to me and I took the opportunity to get him into position to feed him. He latched on, I could have cried again. He was feeding, he was actually feeding from me. I hadn’t missed my last feed. I breathed it all in, I gazed at his face. I wanted to kiss his cheek (but couldn’t as I didn’t want him to unlatch!) All thanks to the amazing lady who runs the group I hope that the end hasn’t come and that we can carry on feeding. If it wasn’t for her advice right there and then at that moment then my journey may have taken a different turn.
Later in the day I managed to feed him again and I took a photograph, just in case it was my last ever feed, just in case I never ever breastfeed my baby again, I wanted to remember this very special occasion, from now on I won’t take his feeding for granted. I will be paying attention and enjoying every single feed and I make no apologies for posting my breastfeeding baby picture, he’s my baby and I am proud to still be feeding him. I won’t be aware when our last feed happens but just in case the next one is the last one I’ll be paying attention.
Before you were born or even thought about your daddy and I loved each other.
We met at work as we both worked within the same department. Doing completely different jobs but under the same roof. We were friends for many years and would go out on nights out with work together. I always thought your daddy was funny and sweet but never thought of us as a couple together. It was many years later that he finally plucked up the courage to ask me on a date. I’ll be forever grateful that he did and that our love story started right there and then. You are both a part of that too, our love story didn’t end with you, it’s still going strong and growing bigger and bigger digging its roots deeper into the soil of life. We both love you so much and are proud everyday that we created such special little people who are growing so quickly before our eyes and continuing to amaze us everyday.
Boy this week I went to the first meeting at your school. I wasn’t sure if it was something you could attend as it started at 6pm. There were a few other children there but I knew that you’d be getting tired right around that time and so I thought it best you stayed at home. I do wish though I could have let you see your new classroom. The evening started with an introduction from the head teacher. She seems nice and part of the reason I chose the school for you. It has a lovely family feel and I hope that you’ll fit right in there. We were given lots of hand outs about various aspects of school life. They explained the school day and what you’d be doing when. Lunch is at 11:30 and we can choose the menu together from home in advance. I think you’ll love the dinners they sound really nice and the catering staff said it was all cooked on site which is good. In the morning there’s a little space for some worship which is nice and the reason I waned you to go to a church school. Even if you decide religion isn’t for you that’s ok, just use that time to reflect and be grateful for the day ahead. After lunch you get some tooth brushing time, this I thought was a good practise and I was also glad to read about hand washing before lunch. Is it too much to send you with some alcohol gel? I think my healthcare background has passed on the importance of good hand hygiene to you! Even Flixster knows the drill when it comes to alcohol gel before eating!
There were uniforms there to view too and an order form. I need to get on with ordering them for you, it just seems like a big thing to do! Your uniform will be grey trousers, a white polo shirt which can be monogrammed but it’s not compulsory, along side a red school jumper with the school logo on it. Theres also a PE kit to buy, book bag and kit bag. It’s all so exciting yet scary!
I’ve arranged for your teacher to come and meet you in a few weeks at home. I couldn’t find out if your teacher was male or female as the reception classes have one of each. You asked me to find out two things at the meeting, what sex your teacher is or in your words “Is the person going to be a man or a girl?” and what your password will be for the computer, hopefully when they visit it will all become clear. I did ask though if you were to have a computer password and apparently not until you move up the school so that should put your mind at rest. I had a look at your classroom and it seems like a lovely environment for you to grow in. That was the part I wish you’d seen. When I’d finished I came home to find you waiting for me, but you’d fallen asleep on the sofa. It’s the first time you’ve ever done that in your life and it reminded me just how little you still are. Being an August baby I worry about how you will keep up with your peers.
Flixster you just get cheekier and funnier everyday at the moment. You’ve taken your very first steps. Its slow and steady progress at the moment but you’ll get there. I think it’s almost the same date as your brother did. He was walking around 13 months just like you are. On Tuesday you took 3 consecutive steps at the breastfeeding group we go to. I wish I’d caught it on camera. I’ll try to catch you this weekend if I can so that you will be able to watch it back when you’re older. I love all the new things your learning. Each morning I get a hug from you and I love it.
I love kissing your chubby little cheeks.
However I don’t love you waking up between 3 & 4am each day. Please please please can you sleep just a little bit longer in the morning. We always bring you up into our room when you wake and I lie down to feed you but that’s it then, you’re up and about and raring to go, ready to menace us.
You know your own mind and you are very strong-willed, you know what you want even if you’re not supposed to have it! I love watching you grow up so fast before my very eyes. You adore the boy and the relationship between you both is fantastic to watch. I hope you will be close together for many many years and support each other in all you do.
The boy told me the other day that he loves having a brother, my heart melted when he said it. He’s such a sweet caring boy. You both are.
I’m hoping to make it a summer to remember but please forgive me if we don’t get it quite right. I want you to enjoy your last summer before school as once you starts I’ll miss my days with you so much. So lets enjoy the long summer days and try to get out and about as much as possible.
Please always remember I love you both unconditionally….forever.
I’ve been meaning to write a list of my favourite songs for a while.
I love music, it plays a big part in my life. When I’m down it brings me back up and when I’m happy it just makes me want to dance. I thought it’d be nice to share my favourites and the reasons why. I’d love to hear everyone else favourite music to. I’ll do it backwards chart style!
5. Elbow – One Day Like This
I love how this song makes me feel, happy. I love the strings, it just feels so big and beautiful!
4. Lonestar – Amazed
This is the song we had our first dance to on our wedding day. Hearing it always takes me back to that day, the love I felt and still feel now for my best friend who I was lucky enough to marry.
3. Celine Dion – The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face
I’m not sure how much explanation this song needs, I just love it. It’s how I feel about my babies.
2. Katie Melua – Thank You Stars
This could easily be my joint number 1 song, I adore the meaning behind it. I thank the universe and stars everyday for all that I have, for hubby and my boys. I don’t know whats up there in the universe but its something and for all I have been given I am grateful. This song sums up my feelings.
1. Coldplay – Fix You
My all time favourite song for a few reasons. Back in July 2005 when the hubby and I were still dating he took me to see Coldplay at the then Reebok Stadium (Boltons home ground) and I was already a massive fan of the song (which was new back then). The very last song they played was Fix You and before they played it they explained that they were also filming the video that night. They played it through twice (what a treat) and filmed the crowd as we sang along. I cried! I bought the single on CD as I knew it included the video and so had already become a special song to me.
On the morning that Flixster was born at home I had my playlist on random in the room as I was giving birth in the pool and just as he was being born this song came on. Of all the songs that I had (and there were a lot) it happened to be this one. This song was the first thing he heard when he joined us earthside. It was also apt as his birth fixed me after going through a tough time with the boys birth. Lights will guide you home…..
We’ve had some pretty busy weeks lately. With Grandma on Mondays, breastfeeding group Tuesdays and me back at work for my 3 full days Wednesday to Friday the weeks are passing by in a blur. I can’t seem to find time to get the house straight let alone write a blog post. I have however promised myself to find more time from now onwards. I don’t want to miss any special moments or firsts in your life.
Flixster I’m going to start with you as we’ve reached a very special milestone in your life. One year ago you came to join us to start your life here on earth. I remember it like it was yesterday and still love to relive your birth story. What an amazingly special time it was.
This was you just moments after you joined us as I sat back to admire your face and start our journey together.
This is you just last night in the bath, gosh how you’ve grown. We’ve had our ups and downs. Mostly up’s but I do wish you’d starting liking your sleep more! Mummy and daddy are pretty exhausted now!
You are defiantly a happy little man, always smiling (unless we’re trying to get you down for a nap, then its screaming!) but on the whole a contented little man. You’re in nursery 3 days a week now and I think you are getting more used to it. I try to take a peek through the window before I enter the room to pick you up and 9 times out of 10 you are ok. I know the ladies look after you there and they have told me you’re ace at giving hugs. I attribute that to all the carrying you’ve had.
I love how you’re face lights up with excitement when the boy enters the room, he is your absolute favourite person. In the mornings when he comes to join us in bed I sometimes think you’d explode with happiness the amount of screaming and dancing you do when you first see him.
On your birthday itself we didn’t really celebrate as we’d all been so poorly with a tummy bug, so we postponed the celebration to coincide with our wedding anniversary. Of course we let you have your presents’ on your birthday though as the boy was dying to play with them. For months he’s wanted to get you (really him too) some Toot toot toys, and form the moment he knew we’d bought them he kept asking if he could have a ‘little’ try!
Now that you’ve had your birthday presents off the family too you’ve got quite a collection, I’m not sure where we are going to keep it all!
Boy – we’ve just had a big milestone in your life too. We know now which school you’ll be attending in September. I’m so grateful that we were offered a place at our number 1 choice of school. I am extra grateful given that I know if lots of mummies who were disappointed with their allocated placements. It’s our nearest school too which is only a few minutes walk away. The thought of school for you fills me with both excitement and dread. I’m excited that another chapter of your life will start, but you’re just so young still. You will have just turned 4 when you start. I hope you cope ok with 5 days a week, the structured learning environment and the large mix of people.
I’m trying my best to prepare you for whats to come, I mention school a lot and talk about where you will be going in September. We have talked about uniforms and classrooms and having lunch there too. The other day I noticed that they publish the plans for the term ahead on the website so I’ll have a look and see if there’s anything we can do to prepare. I’m not asking you to be top of the class or super clever, I just want you to try your best in everything that you do. To be kind to everyone else and to listen carefully in class. I hope that for the first term at least we won’t have to let you go to after school club as that’s a bus ride away but I’m not sure yet how we are going to sort out school pick-ups. It’s just another hurdle that we will learn to cross.
You have been really loving with Flixster from the start but I can see now that he’s more mobile he just wants to do everything you’re doing. I know this is annoying you at times but I’m trying to teach you to share with him. I know he must irritate you when you’re trying to do something but honestly he just loves you so much that he follows you everywhere. He’ll soon be talking like you and I hope that you will be best friends together. OF course I know it won’t be plain sailing all the time but as long as you’re there for each other when it matters that’s all I ask.
I hope that despite our busy lives we can continue to have adventures together and make some fabulous memories this summer, it’s already shaping up to be a good year. Being a family of 4 is fantastic and I look forward to our up coming adventures.
Please always remember I love you unconditionally ……..forever.
Love Mummy x
Another month has rolled around, how did it happen so quickly? We are already in mid March! We have passed another milestone though, Flixster is crawling! This is wonderful and scary all at the same time.
Wonderful because he’s not getting so frustrated at trying to get things that he can see but scary because theses so many small things around that the boy plays with like Lego that I need to be extra vigilant about. It’s easy to baby proof the house first time around but this time its hard to keep an eye on the boy and what he’s leaving around too.
Flixster is chasing the boy around everywhere (at his low-speed for now!) which is driving the boy a little mad as everything he has Flixster wants.
Most of the time I have to do the shiny object distraction technique to try to give Flixster some other focus rather than wanting what the boy currently has. The boy is being very patient with him but I have to remind him now and then about snatching!
I do love the love between them though although I wonder for how much longer I will keep having to repeat “Gently”. I seem to be a broken record with that as the boy’s hugs usually resemble a wrestlers neck hold!
I love bath time together and Flixster adores his big brother, I think this is my favourite siblings photo for the month. They aren’t hugging or looking directly at the camera, but it just shows them getting along and at the start of what I hope is a lifelong friendship together.