The Newborn Diaries:
Elowen’s Second Week

After keeping a diary of Elowen’s first week earthside, I have decided to carry on keeping daily notes for the next few weeks. The days all seem to roll into one at the moment (sleep deprivation will do that) and I know these early weeks will become such a blur all too soon. I want to be able to look back on them and remember as much as I can – the good days and the rough days.

You can read about Elowen’s first week here.

Elowen’s second week:

Monday – Day 8:

Felt like I saw every hour last night. Stephen took Jasmine to playgroup. I rested in bed for a while and tried to nap and E slept all morning. I had a shower and put make up on for first time in ages.

Went to the garden centre in the afternoon. The pushchair had it’s maiden voyage! Jasmine was chaos, running around all over the place.

I breastfed in public for the first time. It felt really awkward.

I tried a feed without a nipple shield – E did latch on but was fussing and kept coming off the boob. Has spurred me on to keep trying though.

Tuesday – Day 9:

Busy day today. Stephen dropped Jasmine off at nursery and then we headed into town with Elowen to register her birth. We were both too sleep deprived to remember what year we got married (2015). We went for celebratory hot chocolates after and I breastfed E in public again. I felt a bit more relaxed this time but I’m still finding using a nipple shield whilst trying to maintain my modesty a bit tricky!

We did a bit of Christmas shopping and I even managed to squeeze in a well overdue eyebrow wax at the Benefit Brow bar! It’s the first time I’ve done anything for ‘me’ in months.

In the afternoon, Stephen stayed home with Jasmine whilst I took E to a breastfeeding clinic to see a lactation consultant. I want to be able to ditch the nipple shields! She checked for tongue tie (no obvious sign of any) and watched me feed Elowen. Sarah, the LC, told me that E’s jaw was quite tight and she wasn’t using her tongue as effectively as she could be. She explained that this was probably due to my fast labour and that E’s latch will probably improve itself over the coming weeks and that she’ll most likely wean herself off the shields anyway. Sarah suggested that an osteopath may be able to help speed the process up a bit but that could get expensive. All in all, it was a really useful and positive appointment. I got lots of answers to my feeding questions.

I spent the evening baby spamming one of my besties on WhatsApp. Told her that E is so cute I wanted to eat her. Bestie told me that there’s a name for that: “cute aggression”. You learn something new every day.
I’m hoping to find out that E’s had a good weight gain tomorrow and we’re discharged from the midwives…

Wednesday – Day 10:

Had my midwife appointment this afternoon. Elowen is over her birth weight and I’m absolutely thrilled. I’m so proud of us both. We’ve been discharged by the midwives.

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I’ve been a feeling tired and a bit snappy today – not helped by the fact that I’ve had a pounding headache. Both girls had a screaming match in the back of the car on the way back home from my midwife appointment. Paracetamol needed, stat!

In the evening I suddenly remembered about a mess-less footprint/handprint kit I bought when I was pregnant. I had meant to do when E was first born but totally forgot about it so did it today instead. Loving E’s iddy biddy footprints…

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I have a spare sheet so I’m going to try and do the same with Jasmine (that will probably be easier said than done) and frame both sets of prints together.

Thursday – Day 11:

Jasmine woke up in the middle of the night again last night. That’s the second time she’s done this since Elowen was born. We hoped she would settle herself to sleep but nope. She was sat up singing the ‘Paw Patrol’ theme tune. Then she started calling out “I miss my mummy! I can’t find my mummy’. She ended up in our bed again but kept us awake for several hours, wriggling around and talking. Stephen ended up taking her downstairs where they slept on the sofa. After a quick Google search, it would seem that it’s very common for toddlers around Jasmine’s age to start waking in the night after a new sibling is born. I hope it doesn’t last long, it’s exhausting enough having one child waking in the night, let alone two.

Elowen has been super clingy today and has not wanted to be put down AT ALL. I don’t mind, I’ve waited a long time for newborn cuddles. It did take me an hour and half to change our bedsheets though (duvet covers were soaked through with breastmilk again). I eventually wore her in the Caboo carrier in order to get sh*t done!

Today was the first day that I’ve felt sad since having E. I feel like I’ve barely seen Jasmine all day and had no one-to-one time with her. She was at nursery this morning and this afternoon I’ve had a baby glued to my boob constantly. Feeling all the mum guilt. I managed to read her a bedtime story at least but still feeling a bit pants.

I’ve been trying to feed Elowen without nipple shields every few feeds with mixed success. She seems to latch on much better on my left side than the right. I probably need to try a few different positions. Feeling positive that we’ll be able to ditch the nipple shields soon though. Practice makes perfect…

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Friday – Day 12:

Elowen met her granny (Stephen’s mum) for the first time today. We’ve held off having visitors up until now as I found it a bit overwhelming having people visit when Jasmine was born. I wanted a week or so to just spend time alone as a family and also be able to get to grips with breastfeeding in private. Jasmine’s doing alright out of being a big sister, she’s had so many lovely presents from friends and family. It’s a bit like Christmas has come early!

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It was nice to see my mother-in-law but I was struggling to stay awake towards the end of her visit. I could feel my eyes getting heavier and heavier. As soon as we said goodbye, I went up to bed with Elowen and had a long nap, waking up just in time for dinner which Stephen had cooked. I still felt tired and fuzzy around the ages – it was one of those naps that makes you feel worse!

I really want to start giving E some expressed milk in a bottle so Stephen can help with feeds but I think it’s probably a little too early still at the moment. My boobs still don’t know what they’re doing half the time and still seem to feel quite engorged for most of the day (other than just after feeds). Hopefully my supply will regulate in the next couple of weeks and then expressing will be more of an option.

My 3 best friends (who live in Bristol) are coming up to visit us tomorrow – I am so excited to see them. I just hope that I’m feeling a bit more awake than I have been today.

Saturday – Day 13: 

Ahh today was so lovely – it was amazing to spend time with my friends. They absolutely adored having Elowen hugs and of course, they made a fuss of my biggest girl too. We spent most of the day at home just catching up and having a good old chinwag! Once Jasmine went to bed we headed out to the pub for dinner with Elowen in the pram. I was a bit nervous about going out for the evening with a newborn but my friends convinced me it would be fine. They were right – E slept pretty much the entire time whilst I made a pig of myself. (I had the ‘Ultimate Burger followed by a Chocolate and Bailey’s sundae – happy days!) Elowen woke up just as I finished my pudding so I quickly fed her before we left. It always feels weird to go out and do ‘normal things’ when you’ve just had a baby but it was just what I needed.

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Sunday – Day 14:

After taking a while to settle last night, Elowen only woke up about two times for a feed so I actually don’t feel quite so tired today. The weather was gorgeous – cold but sunny – so we headed out as a family and took Jasmine to our local park. It felt strange being there with two children – very surreal.

Once we got home we had lunch and Stephen and I tried to get some chores done (he’s back to work tomorrow). Jasmine had a few emotional breakdowns today – at one point, curling up into a ball and saying “nobody likes me”. I know she’s only saying it to get attention but it’s still not a nice thing to hear. We reassured her that we loved her very much but that we sometimes had to do other things and not just play with her constantly.

I tried feeding Elowen without nipple shields again this afternoon (from both sides) and it went well. A little uncomfortable on the right side (as usual) but we are getting there!

And that brings us to the end of Stephen’s paternity leave. The last two weeks have gone way too fast but at least it isn’t long until Christmas now. I’m feeling nervous about tomorrow – my first day alone with both kiddos. I’m hoping to get Jasmine to playgroup in the morning – we’ll see how that turns out!

I can’t believe my baby girl is two-weeks-old already. *sobs*

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The Newborn Diaries:
Elowen’s First Week Earthside

Just as I thought it would, Elowen’s first week ‘earthside’ has passed us by in a blur. I kept a few notes about each day on my phone so I could remember the little things that I would probably otherwise forget.

Elowen’s first week:

Sunday – Elowen was born at 7.55pm – she was so alert and awake for several hours before finally falling asleep for the night. I breastfed her soon after the birth as per my birth plan and she latched on and fed well. Stephen and I ate crisps and watched I’m a Celeb whilst cuddling our newest member of the family. Homebirths rock!

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Monday – Day 1:

Jasmine woke up at the normal time of around 7.30am and came into our bedroom to meet Elowen (more on that below).

We were hoping to have a midwife come out to the house and do our Newborn Check but I got a call in the morning to say nobody was available so could we go to the hospital and have the check done there. When we arrived we were seen straightaway and Elowen passed her hearing test. Another midwife came in and did the rest of the health check. She was worried that she felt a ‘clicky hip’ but couldn’t diagnose it herself, she needed a pediatrician to take a look. We spent the next four hours waiting around in a (uncomfortably hot) birthing unit room until a pediatrician came to see us. As it wasn’t urgent, we were constantly put to the back of the queue (understandably). It wasn’t quite how I envisaged our first full day as a family of four. Anyway, we finally got seen and E’s legs/hips were perfectly fine.

Whilst we were at the hospital the midwife took a look at E’s latch because I told her I was finding it painful. She pointed out that her lips weren’t flanged and she was just sucking on my nipple, rather than taking a full mouth of breast. The Midwife said I needed to take E off and get her re-latch until she got it right. Her latch is still a bit of a problem now (Sunday 27th) but it’s improving all the time.

Tuesday – Day 2:

By Day 2 my nipples incredibly painful, cracked and bruised. I spoke to a midwife on the phone and she asked me if I’d tried nipple shields. I had bought some whilst pregnant but hadn’t tried them yet. I used them for the next few feeds along with my trusty ol’ Lansinoh cream and it helped a lot.

I walked to nursery (with Stephen and Heidi) to pick up Jasmine. I used the Close Caboo carrier for the first time. Found it a bit tricky to put on but should get easier with practice. I felt a bit tender and needed to sit down for a bit. Probably getting a bit ahead of myself.

E woke up every 4 hours or so for a feed that night.

Wednesday – Day 3:

Had midwife come out in the morning and weigh E – she’d only lost 5% of her birth weight so well within the limit.

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Stephen took Jasmine to a toddlers gymnastics club so I had a couple of hours of peace and quiet at home. I hoovered the living room. I know, I know! *slaps own wrist*

It was a rough evening. My milk came in that night and my boobs were so engorged that E had even more trouble latching than before. She was fussing all night, on and off the boob and screaming at me. I caved in and tried to give her a ready-made bottle of formula. She spat it out so I persisted with boob. I got a grand total of 10 minutes sleep all night.

After having ‘after pains’ for the last few days since E was born, they finally seemed to peter out. They weren’t as bad as I feared they would be – just like mild period pains. My bleeding also started to slow down too.

I had my first post-partum poop – it was pathetic.

Thursday – Day 4:

Jasmine was back in nursery for the morning so I decided just to stay in bed with E. Do nothing else but watch TV, sleep, eat and feed my baby on demand. I needed to express a little milk off each side to help with the engorgement pain – used my MAM manual pump which arrived the day before.

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Stephen was particularly awesome today – doing the nursery runs, walking the dog, tidying the house, getting in the food shopping. He’s a good egg.

Friday – Day 5:

Slept well last night and only woke for feeds. E has been co-sleeping next to me so I’m awake and feeding her before she even gets the chance to make too much noise. Nappy changes are a bit trickier though! Jasmine woke up at 4am and came into our bed (she never does this but I was tired and weak-willed). She cuddled up to me, stroked my face and said “I love you, mummy.” It made me cry. How did I get so lucky?

Elowen’s cord stump dropped off this morning.

We had another Midwife appointment to have E’s Heel Prick test done. E slept through it and didn’t even flinch. She’s such a tough cookie.

I’m booked in for a group discharge from the midwives care on Day 10 (Wednesday 7th Dec)

We went out for our first family walk in the woods and then to visit the local Christmas Shop. Ate a big slice of Victoria Sponge in the cafe. YESS!

Boobs were still very tender in the evening, especially around under arms.

I stepped on the bathroom scales (what was I thinking?) – I weighed 9 stone 10lbs. Must stop eating cake.

Saturday – Day 6:

E woke up for about 3 feeds throughout the night last night. Slept contently next to me the rest of the night. Boobs are like a tap when feeding! I kept soaking my bedsheets with my non-feeding boob!

I spent the morning building blanket forts with Jasmine. She’s been so good this week. I’m unbelievably proud of my big girl.

I left the house by myself to walk the dog after getting a touch of cabin fever – it felt weird!

Sunday – Day 7:

The night feeds are catching up with me and I felt exhausted this morning. I fed E and went back to bed until 10am. Didn’t do much all day except lounge around at home.

WE SURVIVED THE FIRST WEEK!!!!!!

And how’s the big sister?

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One of the things that people have asked me about most since having Elowen is “How has Jasmine been?” And honestly? She has been amazing. Jasmine woke up her usual time on Monday morning, after sleeping through my labour the night before, and Stephen brought her into our bedroom to meet Elowen. She didn’t spot her at first and was too busy saying “Good morning, Mummy” to notice the extra person on the bed! As soon as she noticed, she gasped and said “Awwww, baby – pass him me!” (A whole week on and she’s still referring to her baby sister as “him” and “he”) Jasmine’s eyes were the widest I’d ever seen them – you could see that she was just soaking up every inch of this tiny, new person.

Jasmine had her first cuddle with Elowen and was instinctively gentle with her – lightly patting her back. She tilted her head whilst gazing at E and said “Awww, so cute”. My heart felt so full, watching them together. We gave Jasmine her two presents “from baby” (A Paw Patrol plate, bowl and beaker set and a Paw Patrol onesie!) – as you can imagine, they went down very well!)

In short – the first week has gone really well. Jasmine treats E like she’s always been here and knows that she is part of our family and is very much here to stay. She’s very caring and gets upset if E is crying – she’ll stroke her head or hold her little sister’s hand and say “Shush, shush baby” (She can’t say Elowen).

There has been a noticeable change in Jasmine’s behaviour though in that she gets incredibly emotional, very quickly, and seemingly over nothing. If Stephen or I leave the room for a minute and then come back in, Jasmine will run over to us, on the brink of tears, telling us how much she’s missed us. It’s sweet but very, very over the top!

I’ve also noticed when Jasmine’s been playing with her toys that she will act out scenarios with them – yesterday her dinosaurs were ‘fighting with eachother’ with yells of “NO, my mummy” and “That’s my daddy”. It seems there’s definitely some elements of jealousy going on, but she’s hiding it well. (So far.)

I think things will become a bit more challenging when Stephen returns to work and I have to split my attention between two little people – we shall see!

Regardless of what happens, I’m so proud of my big girl and how well she’s taken to our newest arrival.

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Antidepressants and pregnancy: My experience so far…

When it became apparent to me that I was suffering with antenatal depression, I spent a lot of time reading blog posts about others who had been in a similar situation. Reading those posts was what gave me the courage to walk into my midwife appointment and tell her everything I had been feeling. However, what I found frustrating was that nobody really talked about what happened AFTER they’d been to see their midwife/GP. Did they take medication? Did it help? Did they opt for some kind of talk therapy? Did that help?

I, of course, don’t expect anyone to have to write about such personal details for the whole world to read. But I was desperate to know what worked for people and what didn’t. Which is why I thought I’d write a bit of an update post for anyone who is the same same boat as me.

A little bit of background information:

I suffered with depression in my late teens/early twenties due to stressful family situations and although I was eventually prescribed antidepressants, I gave up on them in less than a week because I was scared they were going to turn me into some sort of emotionless robot. I taught myself CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy) and through using the tools I learned, managed to find my way out of a deep, dark hole and become ‘happy Jenna’ again.

In February, I found out I was expecting another baby (after having a second miscarriage back in November 2015) and was cautiously excited to be growing a new member of our family. I had a much easier first trimester than I did with my daughter, only being sick a handful of times in the first 3 months, as opposed to every single day. Other being tired – I felt well, both in body and mind.

Unfortunately, shortly after reaching my second trimester things started to go downhill and I knew from past experience that I was almost certainly suffering with depression. I was crying every day and had stopped enjoying life. I was no longer looking forward to having another baby, and instead, dreading it. I felt like a terrible mum to my two-year-old because I, quite honestly, was hating spending all day, every day with her.

The cause of my depression is very much situational. I live hours away from my friends and family and I miss them all terribly. The isolation and loneliness of being a stay-at-home mum, in a town so far away from my loved ones, for over two years had finally taken it’s toll on me. Add to that, all the raging hormones and emotions that come along with pregnancy and I was broken.

At my 25 week midwife appointment, I broke down in tears and explained that I thought I was suffering with antenatal depression. I instantly felt better for having it ‘out there’ and that conversation has lead to me being where I am today. I booked an appointment to see a GP – who was wonderfully supportive and offered to help me in which ever way I saw fit. I asked for medication.

Type of medication and dosage:

My doctor prescribed me Sertraline as it is safe to use during pregnancy (and breastfeeding).

Sertraline is an antidepressant in a group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Sertraline affects chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause depression, panic, anxiety, or obsessive-compulsive symptoms.” – Source.

The standard daily dose of this medication is 50mg, which is the amount I’ve been prescribed. However, my doctor explained to me that because I’m pregnant, my body will break down the drug a lot faster, meaning I’m only really having half the dose. I was told that if I felt it wasn’t enough then I should let her know and she would up the amount. At this moment in time, I don’t feel the need to do so.

The side effects: 

My doctor warned me that for the first couple of weeks of taking this medication, it may make my anxiety worse. She told me that if this did happen, to continue taking antidepressants and plough on through it because it wouldn’t last. Fortunately, I didn’t experience heightened anxiety but I thought it might be worth mentioning it in this post as I got the impression that not everybody gets this warning from their GP when they start taking Sertraline.

For me, it’s been hard to tell if some of my ‘side effects’ are a direct result of Sertraline or whether they are normal pregnancy symptoms – or a mix of both.

In the first week or so of taking the drugs I experienced dizziness and heart palpitations (at the same time). As you can imagine, this was quite unpleasant, and I remember being sat in a restaurant with my husband, my heart racing and the room spinning, but feeling unable to talk. But, it passed quickly and I’ve haven’t experienced anything like that again for several weeks now.

I also had (and still get) hot flushes several times a day. I can safely say I am not looking forward to the menopause!

The side-effect that I’ve suffered with the most, and still continue to do so 6 weeks into my treatment, is the night sweats. These are very much like the night sweats I experienced in the weeks after giving birth to my daughter, when my body was expelling all the excess fluid I had left over from pregnancy.

Every night I wake up absolutely drenched in sweat – my duvet and sheets are sopping wet. It’s pretty grim and makes me feel disgusting. My bedsheets had never the inside of a washing machine quite so much as they have over the last month or so.

How is my mood now?

Better, so much better. I haven’t cried since I first walked into the doctor’s office 6 weeks ago. I haven’t become an ’emotionless robot’. I have days when I feel grumpy and fed up, just like anyone else would but the difference is that my moods are now on a much more even kilter. I’m finally starting to embrace pregnancy and look forward to having another baby. I feel like I’m a much better mummy to my daughter because we play and laugh together. I’m more inclined to take her out to the park or playgroups whereas before my depression and anxiety would stop me from doing so.

I still wonder how on earth I’m going to cope with two children but I think that’s normal, isn’t it? I know it’s going to be a big adjustment but I will cope.

I should also mention that since I’ve started taking antidepressants we’ve had some quite big news which will have also affected my outlook on life. My husband’s job role will be changing in the next few months which means we will be able to relocate back to Bristol in the New Year. It still seems like a long way off but it’s given me a ‘light at the end of the tunnel’. In all honesty, I don’t think the antidepressants are 100% responsible for my change in mental attitude but they’ve certainly helped. I do not regret starting medication and I will continue to use it for as long as I feel I need to. I suspect once we’ve moved house and I have my support network of family and friends back, I will feel ready to stop my prescription.

If anybody reading this wants to talk about this topic further then do feel free to send me an e-mail or tweet me @_tinyfootsteps. 

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This post was originally published on the 29th September 2016.

A Moony Nappies Review and Giveaway

We were recently asked if we would like to try out and review some Japanese nappies. I raised an eyebrow too when I read the e-mail but curiosity got the better me and so I said “sure, send some my way!” For the best part of two years, we have tried a lot of different nappies in order to find the ‘right’ ones. I never would’ve thought it before becoming a mum – but’s pretty hard to find the perfect nappy for your little one. You want them to right fit, you want them to be able to keep your baby/toddler dry and comfortable and you don’t want to spend a fortune on them. It doesn’t seem a lot to ask when I write it down. Could these international pants, named ‘Moony’, be our answer?

A Moony Nappies Review and Giveaway

We were sent a pack of 38 Moony pull-up style pants in a size suitable for toddlers who weigh 12-17kg. They were the pack designed for girls, which basically meant they were pink. Personally, I don’t particularly care if Jasmine’s nappies are pink, blue, orange or green and I’m fairly confident she doesn’t either – seems silly to genderise nappies but hey-ho, some people like that kinda thing. Both the ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ designs have Disney’s Winnie The Pooh images depicted on them so essentially as far as I’m aware, aside from the colours, they are the same design.

A Moony Nappies Review and Giveaway

Fit: This is probably one of the things I’ve been most impressed with when it comes to the Moony Nappies. Despite them looking almost identical (in shape) to Pampers Baby Dry Pants (which is what we currently use) – they seemed to fit Jasmine so much better. They’re a bit more streamlined around her upper thighs and don’t tend to bunch up around the crotch like I find the Pampers do. They are made of a soft material and have plenty of stretch in them around the waist and legs.

Here’s a picture of both the Moony Nappies and Pampers Baby Dry Pants side-by-side for comparison.

A Moony Nappies Review and Giveaway

Day-time use: I generally change Jasmine’s nappy every 4-5 hours during the daytime. The Moony nappies have been absolutely fine. They keep their shape, absorb liquid well and are easy to remove. I gently tear the sides apart and pull the nappy off, roll it up and use the sticky tab to keep it in place before disposing of it. One of the things I’ve noticed about the Moony pants is that they don’t have that horrible chemical smell that some other nappies do. They also have a wetness indicator strip that runs down the outside of the center of the nappy which is quite handy.

A Moony nappies review and giveaway

Night-time use: We’ve really struggled recently to keep Jasmine dry at night. She’s a heavy wetter which often leads to her nappy leaking in the early hours of the morning. We’ve had to ditch using pull-up style nappies overnight as they often were the worst culprits so I was almost reluctant to try to Moony nappies overnight.

It turns out that I needn’t have worried because since using the Moony nappies for bed times, we’ve had no soggy pyjamas in the morning!

Price: This, unfortunately, is the biggest draw-back for me. The price of a 38 pack is £22.50 (on Amazon at time of writing this post) which is very expensive. Usually I can get two large packs of branded nappies for less than that. Although I am really impressed with the quality of the Moony nappies, and I think they are by far some of the best nappies we’ve ever tried, I couldn’t justify paying double for them – which is a real shame.

Bottom line: These nappies are a great for both day and night use. They’re good quality and are well designed. Sadly, the cost of the packs is their downfall.

To find out more about Japanese Nappies check out their website here and the online shop here.

I’m also giving my readers a chance to win a pack of Japanese nappies (in a size of their choice). Just enter using the rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TERMS & CONDITIONS:

  • All entries will be checked and verified
  • The competition closes at midnight on the 31st March 2016
  • There will be one winner chosen at random.
  • The prize x1 packet of Japanese nappies
  • UK entrants only
  • The nappies will be dispatched by Japanese nappies– blogger assumes no responsibility for delivery.

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Trying again

There is something that consumes my thoughts every day at the moment and that is, trying for another baby. I’ve always wanted at least two children, probably because I grew up with a younger brother and I can’t imagine having not shared my childhood with a sibling. I want Jasmine to have that too, I want to give her the gift of a brother or a sister. I often watch her as she plays with her babies and it makes me realise how much she would dote on the baby of the family. I’m not naive – I know there would probably jealousy and fighting, just as there was between my brother and I, it comes with the territory. But I do know, she would make the best big sister ever.

In November we went through a second agonising miscarriage and suddenly my dream of having another child feels like it’s being snatched away from me. As far as I know, there is nothing medically wrong with me and the fact that I already have a daughter proves that I am capable of carrying a baby to term. It’s more the mental aspect of trying to conceive another baby that I’m struggling with. In the last four years I have been pregnant 3 times and only have one child to show for it. And honestly? I’m just not sure I could cope with losing another baby.

Having a miscarriage makes you feel many things…

It makes you feel like a failure. The moment you see those two pink likes you feel a duty to do whatever it takes to bring that baby safely into the world. When my pregnancies failed, I couldn’t help but ask myself what I did wrong. Did I eat healthily enough? Did I take all the right vitamins? Was I too active? Not active enough? You can go around and around in circles but most of the time? It’s just shit luck.

I felt guilty. I felt guilty that I’d told my husband he was going to be a dad again, only to announce a week later “I’m bleeding, I think it’s over”.

I felt guilty that I have the most wonderful little girl and I still long for another child. I felt like I should be happy with my lot and accept that I’m always going to be a mum of one.

I felt lonely and isolated. My husband and I deal with things in very different ways. He likes to just crack on with things and get back to normality. I like to talk things though and grieve openly. But we’re not meant to talk about miscarriage, are we? It’s not like losing a real person, right? Chin up, get on with it.

It’s the months that follow a miscarriage that I find the hardest. When people expect you to be ‘okay’ again. Over it. Oh, how I wish it worked like that.

I felt angry and bitter. After a miscarriage it often feels like everyone else can seemingly fall pregnant ‘first go’ and have a healthy baby 9 months later. Obviously, I know that’s not the case and I know others have struggled far more than I have. But it doesn’t make it any less difficult when babies and bumps are everywhere, as if they only exist to rub your nose in it. It seems so unfair that others can have child after child so easily and whilst I wouldn’t wish my bad fortune on anybody, I hate being told “I can’t imagine how it feels”. I roll my eyes and I utter “Well, lucky you.” This is me, telling you how it feels.

I don’t like the person I become after miscarriage.

Is it any wonder I am frightened to try again?

I don’t want to call the hospital, sobbing down the phone, to cancel another ultrasound scan.

I don’t want to spend weeks checking for blood every time I go to the toilet, constantly on edge because I fear I will miscarry again.

I don’t want to feel like a failure. Or feel guilty for not giving my husband and daughter what I promised them. I don’t want to feel lonely and isolated anymore. I don’t want to feel angry and bitter about other people’s happiness.

And yet, I still desperately want another baby.

I still want to pick myself up, dust myself down and try again.

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