A Birth Story

Today’s guest post is from Rachel – an old university friend who has recently started blogging as Yumbeemum – and it moved me to tears the first time I read it. Rachel’s a new mum who primarily writes about beauty products (as she says, ‘I need them now more than ever!’), but also has an interest in writing about parenting, education and politics. 

newborn baby

I’m doing something that I was never able to do when I was pregnant. Watching One Born Every Minute. And it is absolutely amazing. When I was pregnant I abstained from watching it as I was determined not to frighten myself. People told me about it anyway though; for some reason, scaring pregnant ladies is a light-hearted past time for many women. I have to say so many of the labours sounded horrific- huge babies, episiotomies, 3 day labours… the list went on. Little did I know that had the Channel Four team been at St John’s, mine would have definitely featured. Continue reading

The Pot Plant Analogy

I wrote my birth story up for another website last week, and when I posted a link to it on Facebook, it prompted a very interesting discussion in the comments.

It seems I’m not the only person who has been told not to ‘complain’ about a difficult birth experience, because I ‘ended up with a healthy baby and that’s all that matters’.

An old university friend, Marina, wrote an absolutely brilliant analogy about how it feels, and why we need to take birth trauma seriously, and she has given me permission to post it here. Continue reading

One Born Every Minute: The Dad Episode

I have a confession to make. I’ll whisper it.

*I’ve never actually watched One Born Every Minute.*

When the last series aired, my Facebook news feed was chock-a-block with people’s thoughts on it – from midwife friends who loved it, to hippy friends who hated it, to childless friends who were terrified by it. I think, for me, it was just a little too soon after DorkySon’s arrival and I wasn’t quite ready to reacquaint myself with the workings of a maternity ward.
Continue reading

Things they don’t tell you about pregnancy, birth and parenting… Part 1

multicoloured candy worms

I’ve just found an old Note that I wrote on Facebook (remember Notes?!) from when DorkySon was three months old. It’s called “Pregnancy, Birth and Parenting: What They Didn’t Tell Me”. It made me smile, laugh, and even cry a little to look back on how I was dealing with being a new parent, almost two years ago, so I’ve decided to post it here too.

Later this week, I’ll post an updated version – Parenting A Toddler: What They Didn’t Tell Me – but in the meantime…

It has been a funny old year. I’ve gone from feeling barely able to look after myself, to knowing that I have to look after myself because I’m growing a little bean inside me, to that little bean turning into DorkySon… and having to look after him every day.

Right now it feels pretty awesome. He’s a wonderful mellow little guy, and it’s great fun getting to know him and watching him grow up. But so often in the last 12 months I’ve wished that I’d been warned about how hard it can be – pregnancy is hard, birth is hard, and parenting is hard.

All along the way I kept having moments where I thought gosh, I wish someone had told me such-and-such. So even if this note serves no purpose other than to remind myself of those moments should I ever find myself in the same position again, here they are… Continue reading