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Hi!, I started this blog quite selfishly and yet not. I had just become a new mum and I needed a space to air out my thoughts. I’ve neve...

Dec 12, 2014

Its time to act..maternal health/ maternal care

Maternal care is something i cared about before being a mother. Now that ive gone through the process i realise how vulnerable one is during that precious time when life is created. In The Gambia which is one of my homes, too ofthen the maternal care is horrific and the babies are lost to complications that would not be life threatening in other countries.

Throughout the years I have heard from people very close to me of thepoor conditions in maternal care in the Gambia and today was one such day... Today my girlfriend posted the message below and it hit a raw nerve.

It is time we do something to help this situation, i'm looking for ideas, donations and clever positive suggestions.. any organisations already working in the field? thank you.

If you are in Gambia, let me know and those of us abroad. im sure we can set up partnerships that can help.

Here is the msg : " My colleague gave birth on Tuesday. The baby arrived prematurely, about 10 weeks early. Yesterday the baby died at the EFSTH. I went to visit my colleague and the story she told of her time at EFSTH was horrendous.

*During the two days she was there, six (6) babies dies.

*She had to share a bed with another mother.

*Power outages causing the incubators to lose power for as much as 5 minutes. It was during one of these outages that her baby's condition turned for the worse.

*And the mother load: Three (3) babies in one incubator.

People it's real. I will really appreciate you all coming on board to help organize this run."

Dec 2, 2014

why teach..

I just realized something pretty major . This rather important thing that may explain why I’ve been struggling so much at work. ..so here it is : The children we teach don’t know why they are in school. simple That may sound strange but hear me out . I am one of those weird people you meet who always preaches about education and humanitarian causes left, right and center. I come from a long line of educators and I have seen the transformative powers access to an education can bring an individual and a community alike. I have met the poorest people in mud huts who battled for education for their children so that they may have the luxury of brick houses and electricity. I know that education has saved the lives of so many children who may otherwise have become child laborers or child brides. I know that through scholarships, perseverance and hard work my parents and grand parents generations produced us, PhD candidates, doctors, writers, engineers, teachers out of the desolation of post colonialism in Africa. I wont go further but lets just say I teach because I believe it’s the gift that will transform . It will make better social beings who can nurture integration and peace in their societies. It provides knowledge about the ever changing world around us and the skills to live it in it. Education is a Right that most of the world are still fighting for, for their children. Right here , in my lovely Sweden, Education is accessible to all ( or the majority at least). When I walk into my classroom , I realized that the children expect a fun experience and that’s it. I’ve asked a few of my kids these past few months why they think they have to be in school and most of them replied “ to learn stuff” or “to have fun”. This realization explains to a great extent, why learning takes a backseat in my everyday routine at work. The value of education is somehow lost over here which makes it very hard for someone like me to teach. Just think about it yourself when you were in primary school, you may have hated school, but you knew what school meant for you and for your parents. Well at least where I came from at least..

Nov 15, 2014

Americanah

Before baby, I could read a book in a week and be done with that.. Now given the hectic schedules of mummyhood I had to take my time with Americanah. Page by page, week by week, the chapters unfolded layers of emotional reactions which surprised me .

When I finally finished the book, I felt a strong urge to find someone to talk about it with.

So I did just that, through friends and online forums, I realized something , if felt like we all read different versions of the book based on our individual ethnic perspectives. I know that sounds odd, but there you go.. Chimamanda gave me a precious gift with this novel. I finally found a book in which I could relate 100 % with the main character.

I love books, I remember as a child my mum built us a bookcase as long as our room and filled with a variety of books. I grew up with Enid Blyton, sweet valley high , the famous five and progressed to Agatha Christie, Poirot, Steig Larsson, Dan brown.. and so on and so forth. I read anything I can find, biographies, fantasy, thrillers, history books, anything.

As I read, I often picture the world the author created which is probably why I love harry potter so much..the fantasy was brilliant.

I have read authors of afro carribean origin , books around slavery, racism, empowerment, gender,urban life. Books about African savannahs, or village life, african folk tales and royalties They all informed and motivated me, the made me develop my thoughts and my perspectives. But I never identified with any of it on a deep personal level as it was not really a lived experience.

What Americanah offers me , is a reflection of myself and my past experience. Every chapter was a world I once belong to. All the references in the book were realities in my mind. I understood Ife’s actions and reasonings as if they were my own. It was wonderful. I thought back to being a child in Lagos, with NEPA going off..I remembered not being consciously aware of bring black or thinking about ethnicities until I was almost a teenager abroad, my hair journey..something I am still struggling with today. Everything was so relevant, I just didn’t want to the book to end. I didn’t want my story to end.

I finally get it. When I was living in France a while back there as a big movement about how ethnic minorities are not reflected or represented in everyday life. For example you could sit on an entire metro journey and not see a person of African or Arabic decent represented on publicity posters . The same could generally be said for magazines, products in the hair counter etc etc.. the people of Paris as represented by popular culture were generally stripped of ethnic mélange. I felt strongly about this as an issue of equality and national identity but its only today that I realize how much it affects our self worth and emotional wellbeing.

I learnt so many valuable things in that book . Being multicultural I often feel like I’m neither in one nor the other entirely but this book showed me that there are millions of people out there who are culturally in between with similar life experiences as me, which makes me part of a rather large community. I was reminded of this when I chatted with someone and they said “it would be nice to meet over coffee or fish pepper soup, “ that made me smile long after the conversation was over.

That’s me right there, in my world crepes and fufu go perfectly together in the same afternoon ! lol,

Nov 7, 2014

My West Africa

You know when people ask that dreaded question.. Where are you from.."

well its becoming increasingly worrying to me.

My answer is normally, "before sweden i lived in London" ..confusing them even more but lately i get the question more and more so i say "my heritage is french and west african".. this is true i was born in nigeria, mums malian/french..dads gambian so there you go.

Now here lies the problem. .due to miscommunication,misinformation, media exaggeration and ignorance in general,  as soon as i say west africa. .somewhere in the response i hear that word.."ebola"

Concern is one thing..empathy excellent. .general stigma not acceptable.

Generalised statements that ive heard..when i say im from west africa are not ok..i realise the panic and fear people feel around this very serious disease but let me put it this way. .once we begin to look at all West Africans as potentially sick ..How exactly do you want me to feel.

I wanted to take my little girl to meet her great grand ma (over 90yrs old) in Mali over Christmas . There has been ONE Ebola case found in mali.  The professionals i spoke to about this trip basically told me that even though the risk of getting infected is very very slim once we come back we maybe subjected to several tests before we are allowed back into sweden.
As a teacher i may have to stay home an extra 14days to ensure that i do not contaminate others..
And my favorite. . 'People would be uncomfortable around you once you come back'

We considered going to Gambia. a place where there are NO REPORTED CASES of EBOLA . and guess what most of the flights have been cancelled. and the reponse i got was the same as going to Mali. 

Did i mention Australia and  Canada has closed its borders to West african citizens.!! ..and i quote "

In a move that puts Canada at odds with the World Health Organization, the federal government said Friday it is suspending the issuance of visas for residents and nationals of countries with "widespread and persistent-intense transmission" of Ebola virus disease. As well, work on permanent residence applications for people from the affected countries is also being suspend"

 Ive had enough to the Q&A. Coming from West Africa doesnt make me an expert or a potentially contagious person! Ive been following the news and social media feeds keenly and almost screamed when i read a conversation that went like this: "Ebola has come to America from Africa to kill us all" "Really,? is Ebola some president or what!?" Oh Dear, I feel that people need to rethink thier reponses and information before acting or speaking..as this is extremely dangerous . Educating yourself and tempering your response is crucial part of social responsibility. (Im happy to point out approriate and factual information should anyone require it.) It is begining to feel like propaganda and i know how dangerous that can be.. This feels like nothing new to me, the earliest i can remember was when i was in my teens on a school trip to the US with all my classmates i remember being pullout of the queue at immigration. When i asked why, they said i was carrying a french passport and my place of birth was Nigeria and Nigerians are notorious for fake passports so my passport may be forged!.. i have several examples accumuilated through the years.. There was a time not too long ago when a the general public in Germany where told that a certain group where inferior, thieves, prone to illness, contagious  etc etc.. and that amazing propaganda let to an extreme isolation and eventually to a War. Information and misinformation are of great importance and what we then do with the knowledge we get , even more important. I feel like the reaction to ebola professionally has been both inadequate and irrational. Take a look at the map in the link below the next time you ebola comes up http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2014/11/03/map-the-africa-without-ebola/

Nov 3, 2014

3 hours

3 hours..thats all i get per day with my baby girl since i started working full time.
Yes i sat and actually counted it out.
I found myself almost jogging home from work to make it home faster.
I make excuses to delay her bedtime.
I want to squeeze every minute from what ive got.
I work as a teacher in Scandinavia so i know, for sure, my hours are really great in comparison to the average mummy  , and yet still...

When i leave in the morning she is asleep.
When im done working,  we make dinner together  (maximising our time together), most of the time she is in her highchair with mini pots and pans, tasting the food mummy is putting together whilst skyping grandma or grandma, both a continent away.

Once yumyums are ready..its dinner, bathtime and then its 8pm! She has to go to sleep.

The only variations that occur are at times. .we HAVE to watch mickeys play house before bathtime because the Hot Dog dance is good for the Soul.

At times we also skype whilst shes in the bath so she can splish splash a little longer.

And then she sleeps.

Never mind that i have 100+ unanswered emails, 3 unheard voice mails f, friends i neglect, birthdays ive missed. My time in the day isnt enough.

I cant believe in an entire day i spend nurturing and teaching other children i give my daughter 3 hours of my presence and focus.

Oct 1, 2014

Got My Cape and my Boots ready..!!

Once i became a mother i realised that some days its literally like Mission Impossible and we are Tom Cruise :). We do THE Impossible whilst keeping calm and gorgeous on the exterior lol. Well since going back to work , i've discovered a new super power; one that I am presently developing..very ...very slowly... this new superpower is the balancing act, the ability to wake up before the sunrise , make it to work, do a good job there and come home and be a brilliant wife and mother .
Sounds fairly simple, in fact most mums i've spoken to already know one such super hero, our mothers and fathers!

I remember my mum being up before everyone and vaguely know that she was doing something to do with food. After work I also remember doing homework with her before she attended to the kitchen , and various other 'chores' and THEN she headed out for shopping or a meeting or choir etc.. it was a fairly normal life.
Now that I am a mother, I can see her routine with a slightly different lense and angle. I now wake up after very little sleep ( little one is still up several times a night) , I get myself showered and ready for work, Put some make up on, because seriously I need it now, I defrost some meal I pre-prepared earlier for dinner, then head out for 8 hours. When I get home, tired with aching legs,im greeted by a one year old who has missed me all day, she wont let me out of her sight. So together we have a little cuddle and start dinner; during dinner preparation I fix her a snack and give it to her. After dinner is ready, we prep the next days dinner, then get her clothes out for tomorrow, my clothes out for tomorrow and any laundry that needs sorting before dinner. Then its dinner time! After dinner its bath time.. then baby gets into her pjs and I take her in to bed ( the taking to bed bit involves tears, singing, story reading and then i cave and breastfeed often!). Once she is in bed, I sort out my bag for the next day and kinda collapse into bed. Ready to start over again the next day. The trick im still working on is keeping my energy up so that Ella gets the best of mummy and her daddy too..people at work also have to see the shiny upbeat version of me . that’s the bit that’s still being developed where i'm concerned.. Im functioning just fine, in a wonderfully exhausted state, and looking rather haggard ; but i'm getting there. Soon I will have all the skills, cape, super boots and all , I hope to fit it all in, mummy, wife, friends, being able to pick up phone calls, going to the movies, responding to emails within two weeks, sorting out my hair properly..ohhh the luxury .. the future is looking bright for this superhero!

come rain or swedish winters, migraine, the flu or the sniffles..i'm on call 24/7 in this awesome space in my life that i actually TRULY LOVE.

Sep 20, 2014

One year

Somehow a year has gone by.
My baby is 1 shes  a total cheeky monkey who giggles a lot..she chats and has tantrums..she still wont sleep straight through the night or be brave enough to walk but she will kiss you good by and pat you on the back when you hug her.
She is a natural dancer and i am amazed by the person who is growing infront of our eyes.

As I see her grow and change i think about myself. Through all the challenges and developments over the year i have been told constantly by family and friends that everything will return to normal again soon. That i will find my old self soon..my old waist..my energy. .my focus and my life as it was again.
Considering all her growth over this year..i feel comfortable in my growth. Ive decided to stop looking back at the Emily i used to be ...the dancer. .the impulsive one..the traveller..The girl i used to be.  Instead im discovering a new Me.
I know through my conversations with other mummys that this is not the same for everyone but for me its clear.
I grew with my lil one without knowing it; ive planted my feet firmly on the ground. .travelling  so often is now implausible, i want to be at home. I have become  rounder with bits that wiggle..im tired but happier than ever, im more anxious in certain situations but hey thats normal i finally have something i would give all not to loose. That 100 percent confident me is replaced by a more cautious side...im calmer and need makeup more often lol im grown..i realise that turning 30 for me meant becoming a wife, becoming a mother and through those experiences change although unexpected is totally accepted now.

For me  becoming a mummy didn't just mean having a child. I became a new version of me through becoming a mum and finally i like that new person in the mirror.

Aug 25, 2014

What I wish I knew..

My little one is almost a year old! I simply cannot believe it. That means I have been a parent for a year! And survived :D..lol



Ive been thinking of all the things I’ve learnt and all the things I wish I had known BEFORE I became a mummy. Ive talked about this with some mummy friends and on one of my favorite FB mummy groups there was recently a discussion around this too… there are so many myths and mysteries about being a first time mummy perhaps a mummy fact sheet should be handed out to everyone at the same time your first ultrasound.
Well here goes., below are the ramblings of a first mama on what I wish I knew before embarking on the most wonderful journey ever.

1. The First few weeks
The first few weeks are insane.holding my baby for the first time is magical. The arrival of a little one is generally life altering in the best possible way. And then we get home from the hospital and it gets real. Baby may needs to eat every 3 hours for instance and Baby needs you every single moment. Its terrifying and exhausting and I guess I wasn’t ready for that.

2. Bleeding,
now I know you’re automatically thinking oh, the operation or delivery or something along those lines but you’re all wrong. AFTER you have your wonderful baby you have what seems to be an incessant period which honestly regular pads couldn’t cover. Seems like most mummys I know needed the super maxi pads to get through the first few weeks

3. Emotional roller coasters
Please don’t under estimate this. After baby arrives your hormones basically decide to mess with you and leave you euphoric, scared, insecure, giggly at times going through all of those within one hour. It can be unnerving to have the greatest little baby in your arms and feel terribly sad, don’t worry its totally normal. Depression can also creep in, so try as best as you can to talk to someone and accept help.

4. Prunes are you friends :D
Seems for mummys that had a c section like me and natural birth all felt the about same thing. The anesthesia for the operation stops everything..I mean everything, when you wake up youe insides wake up even slower and doing a number 2 becomes the greatest challenge of ALL time. Plus, you’re awesomely sore down in your lady bits any way, so you don’t want to be applying extra pressure..so, laxitives and Prunes, go for it at will, you might end up swiging the liquid ones by the end of day one.

5. Invest in ONE good baby carrier
I know this is not always possible but I’ve ended up with 4 baby carriers and one was all I needed. Try to visit other mommas and see how it fits, try it on in store and basically what worked for me was the carrier that’s light, ergonomically sound, allows me to carry baby on my chest , on my back and hip without too much effort. The Ergo worked for me and I would totally recommend it

6. Breastfeeding; the journey
If you’ve been following my blog you know this is a biggie. My experience is mine but I’ve spoken to a few mums and its important that someone tells you it can hurt like hell!..some clearly don’t have such a rough time, but I had bleeding and crack nipples, struggles with baby latching etc etc etc..best to read up and expect to have to work at it because at the end its totally worth it.
Ps- Lansinoh is an awesome nipple cream, paired with nipple shields you’ll be prepared to face the challenge.

7. Get a baby thermometer
I know it’s a bit weird but you’re rather jumpy the first weeks and always afraid baby is ill, not breathing or not eating ..and taking the temperature easily calms mummys nerves and reassures that baby is generally perfectly fine.

8. Beware of colic.
Almost all babies suffer from this gassy hell called colic and although there are many treatments, and you have to find the one that suits you best. Its something that is best prepared for. Babies can cry for hours and hours and no Dr will take you in because ‘its just colic and it will pass’. Honestly after 12 sleepless nights you loose your mind so read up, look up massaging techniques and medication that seems to work well for other mums.

9. Feed Mummy
Once baby arrives parents forget that they will need to eat, nor will they seem to have the time to cook or shop for grocerys .So you can befriend an awesome takeout place or cook lots of meals, freeze and just reheat as needed.

10. Feeling fat
99.9percent of people believe breastfeeding will automatically help you shed the baby fat. Truth is it does for some people and not for others. And adjusting to the new you, body shape and weight can be hard. Be prepared , every mummy and baby class you attend will feel a little like the first day of class as you compare your belly to thiers. I personally gained huge amounts of weight after I delivered, then invested in a belly belt which helped and now that I’m stopping breastfeeding I’m loosing weight (without diet or exercise,go figure!)

11. Hairloss
Seriously , our hair falls out a bit or a lot thanks to hormones, so no fear it will grow back.

12. Remembering that there are two parents in this whole situation
I think it was the hormones but I often felt the pressure to be an all round super mummy even when daddy was right there to help. There is a little person now pretty much consistently between you and your husband. This can cause friction or distance and frustration. Be prepared to be patient and remember that this is a unique situation and the first few months are the toughest.
A dad told me once that in their prenatal class, they were told that 50percent of the couples will divorce by the babys first birthday!.TERRIFYING

13. This too shall pass
This should be every mothers motto, seriously.. sleepless nights, painful breasts, toddler tantrums, colic, tired arms, everything. So do whats best for you and your family, And that’s the best you can do

Aug 16, 2014

Her Heritage

I recently had a conversation with a friend about how lovely it is to come from one little town, with most of your family within close proximity. To have one shared culture and be content. It sounded pretty idillic.

I am Malian - Gambian - French, currently living in Stockholm. My husband is Gambian. We speak three languages at home and now swedish words have creaped into our daily vocabulary, making our total home languages to four!

Although i know my daughters' nationality , I wonder how she will feel ethnically and culturally. She is born in Sweden, will go to a regular swedish school and more often than not be the only brown person in her group ( lets leave that for another blog post).

The idea of identity is pretty fluid for me at least.. from what I've read, people of mixed ethnicity, often belong to neither, the studies show that instead, they merge parts of their culture transferred by their parents and create a totally new cultural identity.

I have three ethnicities and i certainly don't feel like one overpowered the other, neither do i feel like a Malian, or Gambian or french person will ever look at me and say "hey, you are one of us" lol :D It is , what it is but its come to mind more through pregnancy and having a baby, cultural norms and values come to the fore.. In Gambia and Mali there are many to-dos and not-to dos around children and I feel like i'm constantly in a balancing act , managing my cultural heritage, plus my husbands and our western notions.
When something happens, i call mum, midwife,google, online mum forums and then decide :p

Here is one example.. When my little one started teething my mum gave is a beaded necklace that is traditionally supposed to soothe the baby and aid the teething transition. I cannot even begin to tell you how many questions i've had to answer around why she has it..some people worry she will choke herself, others worry about the germs it will gather, others think its a fashion statement etc etc etc...
I personally don't believe in it but i believe in my mum , so she wears it.. (try explaining that to the hubby ..totally logical :) ) funnily enough i googled teething beads and it seems , in some parts of Europe there is a tradition of giving babies a very similar necklace , only the beads are made of amber and this mystically supposedly soothes babys teething periods! HA!

The necklace is just one example, theres feeding styles, weaning,when baby should stand,, how to massage the baby, what to do when baby is sick! aie ..cultural parenthood is a minefield..

My little girl got her ears pierced at 4 weeks old, i know thats early for Europe ( the norm being 18yrs) but in Africa thats late ! its generally done at birth!! She also has beads around her teeny tiny waist just like many little african babies ,just because its pretty :p

I suppose what I'm getting at is, I'm increasingly aware of the value of what my parents handed me as culture , which I want to hand down to my child, as soon as I've learnt how to blend it evenly with hubbys too :)

Aug 9, 2014

The end of an era.. well almost

It is finally time.
Ella is 11 months. .shes independent and loves solid food. Last week she even put her food in a spoon and popped the spoon in her mouth!
My baby is a baby no more
With all this regular food taking precedence my milk supply is dwindling and well im feeling ready for breastfeeding to be over.

I wont say she doesn't need it anymore. .its more that its function has changed . Lately we breastfeeding less for nutrition and more  for bonding.
She will breastfeed if really upset to soothe herself or nurse to sleep..but even that is becoming problematic.  Some nights she wakes 3/4times  to breastfeed. Basically i have become a living breathing pacifier as she's refused to take one from birth!

I should be returning to work in a month so it feels even more important to me that she doesn't need me in that way.

Seems to me quitting is going to be just as hard as starting was! Ive tried to reduce feeds especially at night and that has led to inceased pitchy screams ! Aie..

I dont know how long it will take for her to be 100% weaned..at this rate could be a week or a month!

Jul 23, 2014

Working Mum

The other day I got an email from my LinkedIn account, asking me to congratulate a friend on thier new role. It seems like i'm getting that request almost weekly.
As Im in my 30s now it seems totally normal that the people circles around me are growing and progressing career wise.Its pretty awesome to see, the same people who shared picnic benches with me in high school, or club nights at uni are now big shots, managers, leaders and entrepreneurs in thier various fields.

I have to say I am a very career oriented person. Sometimes I feel like I should be saying ' I was a very career oriented person '. the duality of my feelings around everyday situations because i am now a mother confuses me regularly.

I am trying to ready myself to go back to work in September after a luxuriously long 1 year paid maternity leave (thanks to the wonderful Swedish government) I am still unsure how I feel about it all.
One the one hand , i am ready for that daily interaction with adults, for new mental challenges and baby-free lunch breaks :) on the other hand I am not ready for all that time away from my gorgeous girl. As a result i am inclined to negotiate shorter working hours, to NOT look for trainings or promotions that may result in me working longer hours which in turn means less mummy time.

When I looked at things ernestly, I realised I only want to pursue my career properly if I could be cloned so that no mummy time is lost!
Sadly we are not there yet scientifically so I just don't know how i am going to tackle this. I need the fullfilment I love from working but my heart is not quite ready for the realities of being a working mum.

Jul 13, 2014

Blue Ivys Hair


I don’t keep up with celebrity news, but I was recently in LA where it seemed like there was very little other news!.. I read and watched over and over again, reports, articles, on newsfeeds, negative comments about Beyonce and Jay Z's little toddlers natural hair!.
It got me thinking for a while about something I have been meaning to blog about but never got around to.
Comments from the General public.. especially around our children’s' hair.
Somehow lately, it seemed we have given ourselves the right to comment about anything and everything, regardless. People tweet, facebook, blog, write articles about anything really and as a blogger I know how liberating it is to have a voice, however, like my mum and Thumper from Bambi say "if you cant say something nice, don't say nothing at all!."

This seems particularly pertinent when it comes to talking about other people’s children!

When my little girl was born, I had had dreadlocks for 7 years .On her first appointment with a midwife she was about 2 weeks old. I waddled my post caesarean self to the clinic and there met another mum in the waiting room. She stared at us for a little bit and when she was leaving she said
" your daughter has such gorgeous hair, unlike her mother"
You see this happened in Sweden but she spoke English to me so there was no misunderstanding. In my post morphine-no sleep state, I simply watched her leave, there were no words available right then to 'educate' this woman as a normal me would have lol!.

But anyway there you go , the hair comments had begun..it made me think.. and think again and soon after that I cut off my locks.
I didn’t cut them because of her, but I did cut them because I wanted my baby to see hair like hers in me, especially as we live in a place where she will stand out .

Now it’s been 10 months and I regret cutting my locks. I miss the simplicity and there is also the pretty obvious fact that like millions of other people with afro hair, we simply do not have the same type of hair. Just like I don't have my mother’s hair, my daughter does not have my hair.

Here is what hits home for me
1. The lady's comment probably hit harder as I was more vulnerable at the time feeling a fat, tired and unpretty, as you do those first few weeks. It is unacceptable to wrap a compliment in negative comment

2. Who gives us the right to comment!!!Hold it in, you never know how people will take it.

3. Children especially should be allowed to grow up free from judgement of that kind.

I often think of little Blue, who will grow up and see the media comments about her hair in a few years and just cut it all off! Who knows ???.. If we keep this up, we will give her a hair/body complex. I read a great article, finally saying it as it should be : Blue Ivy's Hair Sparks Ridiculous Change.Org Petition, And We're Disgusted
I am not naive, I know there are rude people out there but some comments make me wonder what we expect of the next generation. The internet has given us a voice, but that doesn’t mean all voices need to be heard. What do you guys think?

Jul 8, 2014

Getting around... The anxiety

One thing i never considered was how i would get around with baby.. I knew there were super handy baby slings and the buggy of course and thats about it. i went round and round in my head about which carrier to buy and ended up with an ergo, a moby wrap, a reboso and a baby bjorn :) yes that many.. some were gifts though..i didn't go crazy I promise. Sadly what I couldn’t and didn't consider when getting a sling is how baby felt in it. some carriers she just loved from the go like the moby wrap however i just never could tie it around me fast enough! needless to say i gave up on that one. 90percent of the time we were in the ergo (see earlier post). The baby born we used once and gave up, she screamed , i got confused..the end. The reboso we loved but she is a wiggler..she moved in it so much i was worried she would tip right out of it. lol! So thats slings.. next came the buggy. hubby and I chose the Brio Smile without much consultation really. we like the wheels, the breaks, the storage it was great. Here is what we didn’t plan on. How we were actually going to get around.With the sling i almost always had baby in the front cause she was so little, it was comfortable and comforting. however its kinda like having your pregnancy belly back. there is a mini being in front of you that blocks your sight and your reach in a rather comical way.lets just say my agility and mobility were reduced for a bit, but your know what, its manageable and you get used to us. plus the older baby got , she could be on my hip or my back giving me almost 100percent control of our space together. The buggy: we had this lovely four-wheeler, we were quite excited to put baby inside and take her out. a simple walk is great but i greatly appreciated the shock absorbers because every bump gives you a minor heart attack ..especially when baby is getting some of the elusive sleep that everyone told me about. next we had to maneuver doing steps/stairs alone..which was hell..i never tried to lift the buggy by myself let alone doing it with my baby in it!!!. lucky for us in Stockholm most train stations have lifts or elevators but still the random staircase does creep up on you. then you have two choices, you can smile at the nearest stranger and ask for help or become She-Ra and lift that buggy up! ok the next terror are escalators.. i have never even thought about escalators, however once i stood in front of one with my buggy in front of me, my anxiety levels rose significantly. do i go buggy first or me first, i wasn't sure which way to go, i had seen people with buggys over their heads but i wasn't not sure that I strong enough..what if i tilt so fat and the baby falls out..ahhhhhhhh my midwife should have covered this on day one!!! lucky for me , i met my lovely friend K, at a mall for coffee early on and she gave me tips and showed me how, without her, I don’t know how I would have survived.. for new mommas out there, when going down an escalator, buggy first, then slightly tilt down with the weight of your body and your good to go. when going up, turn backwards literally with your back to the escalator and walk backwards onto escalator with baby in front of you. that way again your body is supporting the entire buggy weight. I have seen people have the buggy in front but then your buggy is above your head on the step in front of you and if like me you are a weakling, it will be an uncomfortable ride :D and here is my final travel anxiety, the bus! especially the bendy busses eurgh.. when baby was about 4 weeks old, i had her sleeping, strapped in her warm baby bed on the buggy and we got on the bus for a short ride. i parked her in nicely, brakes on and took the seat adjacent. and on the first tight swerve, my entire buggy tipped over. the buggy was face down on the ground. i will spare you the hysterics, i’m sure you can imagine,but i picked buggy up and Lord knows how but she was still snug, and asleep like nothing had happened in the little cosy bed thing.MIRACLE! the important thing to note is you need to park your buggy with the back against the rail. so you either get on the bus backwards or get on and turn buggy 360degrees so baby is facing you.. and you know those random straps or strings on the bus handrail. use them to tie your buggy to the rail and you should avoid what happened to me :D I learnt a lot traveling with my baby in town, and its an essential skill. It was important not to let the discomfort and anxiety keep you within the safety of your home . Getting out the house is really important for mama and babys' sanity so go on brave it!!

Jun 29, 2014

"....put some windex..i mean breastmilk on it!!! :)

I hope you guys watched My Big Fat Greek Wedding before..well in the movie the dad sprays windex on anything. .its the magic remedy for burns, pimples. Everything !!
Turns out breastmilk is pretty much liquid gold too!

Gold yes because the first few months it was yellow(not beautifully white like I thought). Apparently thats just the way it is..full of goodness and superstuff to give your baby  everything they need to grow and thrive at least for the first 6 months

Seemed to me that every time I would call our pediatrician about something her answer was always.. "Put some breastmilk on it!:
For example:

baby has excema due to overly dry skin
"Put some breastmilk on it"

Baby has a bad cold and her nose is blocked
"Put some some breastmilk in her nose"

Baby has an infection
"Let her breastfeed"

Baby has diarrhea
"Let her breastfeed some more"

Breastmilk is apparently an antiseptic and has all the super nutrients for our little ones. I have always been a fan of breastfeeding but now i'm turning Activist lol:) so mamas don't you worry about breastfeeding anywhere and everywhere, just ignore the weird stares and know you are literally carrying and feeding your little one the.. best.. thing..EVER :D

Although I would love to end this post here, it just occurred to me that mums-to-be like me a while back, would have been slightly misled at this point.
The truth is the first time a baby latches on to breastfeed, and latches is just the fancy word to say the baby sucks on your nipple..well it hurts.
I didn't know or expect pain so that was a great big shocker for me. It really really hurts, and sometimes your breasts will get dry and crack. Lets just say it is not easy.
HOWEVER
To me it was worth all the pain because of some of the reasons listed above and i am a Breastfeeding Believer!.
Also there are things that help sooth the pain and get baby to latch on properly so they get enough milk and your breast isn't being tortured.
1. Nipple Shields, they are little plastic nipple shaped things, you can buy and put over your breast , that really helped me with the pain and cracks
2. babys position can also affect how breastfeeding feels initially so try a few to find a comfortable one. The best for me was having babys nose parallel to mouth so baby is lying across your belly
3. Nipple Cream, there are loads available that you just put on and its soothing and cooling and helps your nipple heal faster .
4. Talk to someone (professional/friend/blogger/mums forum) who has breastfed, or talk to everyone you know who has breastfed, get tips and support or even just a hug makes it better.
The struggle for me subsided after about a month, and after that it was a pain-free and loving experience for us both..

Hold Me Tight 'HMT'

I'm about to reveal another mummy secret that I really think every momma should be told BEFORE delivery at the very latest.

Aparently once you've delivered you should wear a 'shaper kinder belt thing' to hold your belly in and help everything go back to its orginal place.  Aparently if you do it immediately after delivery you most likelt will get a flat tummy.ESPECIALLY if you've had a C-section!!! 

I didnt know this was a rule! ! I have one friend who told me this but I didnt take it as anything too crucial to remember. I had to have a planned cesarean so the idea of tying my belly was a big no no.  Once the morphine from the operation wears off ..trust me the pain is real and the soreness ..unbelievable, except for those moments when you're entirely still, holding baby..during those moments you're in heaven and nothing else matters!

So apart from the pain..aparently after the operation your belly is full of gas and that took like a week to go down. .I literally looked and felt pregnant still..honestly I had a perfectly painful bloated belly after delivery. .again the idea of strapping on a waist belt seemed like an impossibility not that I was even considering it

Now a couple of months later my baby belly is still around refusing to budge and I cannot help but notice some mums dont have one, whether they work out or not, breastfeed or not! . Seems good old genetics and body metabolism has a role to play too.
9 months after delivery this baby belly makes me look approximately 5 months pregnant all the time and its just frustrating and embarrassing.  So ive turned to the waist shapers again.
Here is what ive learnt

1. they cost a bomb! The good ones are no less than 30$ and go up to 150$
2. There are a million styles..
3. The sales people all swear that they make you loose weight

So I tried one on and they are pretty uncomfortable thats to be expected .BUT my belly is definitely tucked away!! (See pictures). I just  started wearing it this week so I will update you guys if I notice weight loss. I have to mention that everyone has now told me im wearing it late in the game..I should have been doing this months ago but I didnt know  and frankly my appearance was the last thing on my mind up until a few weeks ago:(.
Based of how they feel I have baptised my shapers "hold me tight ,HMT" lol, cause it feels like a constant tight hug around your tummy.
I must say that knowing that my belly is not sticking out makes me feel much much much much more comfortable and even beautiful! Hooray!!

These are the two  styles ive chosen. The full body I wear for fancy dresses or nights out (those are rather rare). The waist one im trying to wear all day. Sales ladies say I should wear it at least 4 hours a day to see an effect. .

So ladies get yourself a 'hold me tight' BEFORE delivery if possible or as soon as you deliver and attempt to put it on as soon as you feel you can.

Jun 23, 2014

The importance of a Mother for a Mother

Being a mother has made me see my mum with new lenses, with renewed admiration and increased understanding.
I have a super mama..you know the kind that takes care of everything and everyone. Growing up she was our cook, teacher, plumber, electrician, counsellor, driver and everything else you could think of. Together with my dad they raised their children to dream big and follow those dreams wherever ..fearlessly. 
This philosophy has taken me pretty much around the world and I think growing up we naturally begin to take parental love for granted. I mean its always there..always constant.No matter how naughty ,annoying , pigheaded or difficult I am or was. My parents remain a constant source of truth and love. My mum often told me if you stink people will just move away or avoid you but I will never hesitate to tell you "child you stink! Go have a shower " lol :D
  Well having a baby made me get it..I get that my mum never needs privacy or space from us. I get that she is always available no matter the time or situation. I get that even at 30 she would always have me in her bed if I needed her. I now get it because the love that was born with my daughter is like nothing i've ever felt. Its all encompassing and makes you loose yourself. Being second place feels normal as long as my child is first. I can go without eating or showering or anything if baby needs something.  Her cries make my heart ache even when I know shes just being unreasonable.  When she approaches someone new i'm always worried that they may reject her and her hurt feelings, break my soul. Nothing is too much or too little. .with my baby I am unreasonable
Before motherhood you could set me like a scale or compass.. I rarely would choose sides and always tried to be understanding of everyone and everything. I was one of those naive people you meet who believe in equity, equality and world peace! Yes I said it!!...world peace..:D
Having a baby changed me. I have never ever fought in my life..not even with my  siblings but I know I would fight my babys' every battle.
Having a baby made me not only understand my mum it made me need her more. Who else can read me through a picture even when I'm miles away.

I realize I will never ever be able to love my mum how she loves me..just like my daughter's love wont match mine.  Must be human nature. I am certain though that I can only be the mum I am because of my mum. And being a mum made me a better daughter.

Je t'aime maman☺💙

Jun 14, 2014

Breastfeed everywhere..anywhere..anytime! BF Proudly :)

Last weeks debacle about that graduate breastfeeding left me feeling a little underwhelmed with the general public.
I felt there should have been a pro -breastfeeding rally of somesort in support of this young woman! ☺..ok maybe a little extreme but  here are a few reasons why I felt so strongly about this.

For one she's doing the right thing! !!! There she is in the picture..graduate! Young! Black woman! ! Breastfeeding! ! Hellooo.. its the perfect picture of accomplishment.i say well done

I read the outrightly negative comments and the inbetween ones saying they're not against breastfeeding per-se but.. the photo could wait..why did it need to be on camera..well why not!?..i mean, just last week the world applauded Rihannas nudity dress and now we flinch from a boob..one thats actually being used for the best purpose in the world! 

It made me sad that women feel conflicted about this..unsure or even ashamed.. my earlier post "put some windex..i mean breastmilk on it" went through a couple of the genius reasons why breastfeeding is golden so i wont reiterate. But what does bother me as a mum is that a woman's body is exploited as a marketing tool everyday..to sell fragrance or underwear .partially naked women are on tv..billboards..the internet everywhere and thats ok HOWEVER once we whip out a boob to breast feed it becomes controversial and open to debate.  Well thats just outrageous in my little Emilyland!
My body is mine and i will choose to breastfeed wherever and whenever baby desires it without comments from outsiders thank you.
Yesterday i was walking in downtown LA and my 9month old started to have a super tantrum demanding to feed..so i stood right there in the corner of the street and started to feed her. Once she was happy and settled suckling, i looked up and whoosh a camera on a crane zoomed by my head.  Only then did I notice the whole intersection was being filmed and an actress in a skin tight rubber suit was reciting her lines 2 meters away from me.  I hope we do show up in the background of some Universal Studios  movie breastfeeding ha! (i checked the logo on their vans) just goes to show the wonderful situations breastfeeding can lead to.

On a more serious note breastfeeding is hard and painful in the beginning. Mums are often super self conscious about doing it ..having to lift your shirt in public..risking someone seeing stretchmarks or belly that embarrasses you even further..i just feel the world should let us be..let us do this without your judgment or negativity.

To that effect i am starting my very own personal movement feel free to join  post a proud breastfeeding moment , hashtag and share.
#BFPride

May 30, 2014

Baby-fro-diaries converges with my mummy diaries

I recently decided to merge my too blogs into one reason being:
1 . writing and tracking two blogs is more than i think i can handle

2 . my interest in hair was born out of my concern about my unborn childs hair and issues around beauty.all of which feed into my mummy diaries anyway!

So please forgive any confusion and happy reading

An Ode to Single Mamas

So many times during the last few months I've sat and wondered just how the single mommas do it all by themselves.
I have to admit i have the most loving, hands on husband ever.
After my cesarean i found myself barely able to walk,
zombified because of lack of sleep,
unable to turn to pick baby up by myself to put her on my breast..
i couldn't even dress myself without quite a bit of pain.  He stepped up. Without my husband I dont see how I would have suvived without desperation or sinking into some sort of post natal depression. 
Even when i got the hang of  things I couldn't wait for hubby to get home from work  so i could hand him the baby!
I think single mums must have some superpower of some sort.
They manage to have a baby,
work off the baby weight, Cook, clean house, attend appointments on time and basically raise a whole child AND they make it look easy because the ones i know never complain!       
so right here..right now ..i proclaim single mommas..super mamas :)
you all inspire me to juggle motherhood and wifehood better.

Ps -Single Papas you guys are beyond amazing too not to worry you will get own post soon, promise:)

May 29, 2014

My journey choosing a baby carrier

One of the things that I’ve struggled a bit with was figuring out which baby carrier would work for me.. looking online doesn’t really help because they’re a million out there and I feel each carrier fits differently based on everyone’s body shape!.i am short and baby is rather tall like her papa so it was a bit tricky fitting her comfortably on my torso. The most popular, seemed to be the Baby Bjorn where I live in Sweden, but baby hated that and I felt like it restricted baby’s comfort and movement around her hips and thighs. This one however is daddy's favorite.  Maybe a height thing.. but it does have one benefit over the others: you can carry front facing on you chest as well as belly to belly as i call it :)
   The next one was the Moby Wrap.. ergonomically sound, comfortable, baby liked it, I liked it, my back didn’t hurt BUT its like 6 meters of fabric that you have to learn to tie and I just never learnt how to do it quickly without stressing and baby was more often than not screaming to be held at the same time. finally we got the Ergo carrier with the baby insert!! woohoo lightweight, comfortable for baby and mummy, quick to put on and take off even with wriggling , screaming baby. baby can be held both front facing me and on my back which she loves. I do wish it could carry her front facing too but I hear they are developing a carrier to fix this :) The ergo is the one I use 99percent of the time . Good around the house or on a day out. I have one last favourite from Mexico its called a rebozo. It’s basically a fabric sling with a ring..sooo easy to put on, baby can nurse in it and very comfy on the hip when doing stuff around the house and baby is being clingy, refusing to be put down. I use it day to day but only for short periods of time. Ella is only 8kg at 8and half months so not very heavy but still I cant have her in it for very long. nevertheless I do love it and recommend it .

 

And to finish of todays post, here is my gorgeous hubby with baby in the Ergo :D

May 24, 2014

Body Issues

Another unexpected turn in motherhood has been body issues. I’ve never been skinny, I’m short and super curvy but I’ve always loved my curves and been extremely comfortable in my skin. I’ve known this skin and body for 29 years and I love it.. during pregnancy I didn’t do any fancy exercises but I did continue working to the end and by the 9th month, I had gained a little weight but nothing too major.. it had never even occurred to me that I would need to think about actively losing weight. Everything and everyone seemed to believe that once you breastfed, the weight literally fell off . I breastfed exclusively for almost 9 months now and the weight seems determined to stay. I have to say I had a c-section and I am not the gym type, I walk and eat healthy and that’s all I can honestly fit in right now. It is hard however for me to accept this new body and shape. I don’t know what to wear, how to dress, nothing fits and that’s been a challenge. Before delivery I thought I would have stretchmarks on my belly to remind of the beautiful moment when baby and I were one. I have not a single stretch mark on my belly , but I do have a pretty round belly that almost looks like I am still pregnant. I think image becomes very important after delivery, I’ve been so tired and focused about my gorgeous daughter that I as a person have taken a back seat..and for me looking frumpy often leads to feeling frumpy.. I saw this lovely short video the other day and I knew I had to share it as the author says “everyBODY is beautiful” its just about relearning how to love it or making the changes that fit in your life :D The video link http://www.upworthy.com/the-story-behind-one-of-the-best-before-and-after-photos-ive-ever-seen?c=upw1.. Her website www.bodyimagemovement.com/

May 11, 2014

Protective styling

Well ive had my hair in a  protective style aka Senegalese twists for a little over a month now so now that were on a family holiday i decided to undo and let my hair breathe again..
So after a a good wash and conditioner i am pleasantly surprised with the lenght..strenght and return of natural color!!
Now as this was totally unplanned and i am away from home i have no oils..no cremes nada..will have to keep all posted on how this new situation develops..

May 4, 2014

Three in One

Been keeping a keen eye on babys hair texture and trying to figure it out in our ever changing Stockholm weather..
Now that she is 8 months I’m pretty sure she has three very distinct hair textures on that little head of hers.
Right at the back its dead straight and extremely soft..in the middle she has pure kinky hair, and on the top half of her head its lovely small very defined curls.
so for I’ve found that its easiest to detangle with a mixture of oil and water sprayed on every morning. then we slowly work a large tooth comb through till completely smooth. ..once that’s done i go through with a fine tooth comb to remove any particles that maybe in her hair. and were good to style! right now sitting still is still an issue so i do something quick..two little braids at the back and one puff at the top!

Baby Milestones

I looked at my little girl today and she is 8 months old now..
her growth and development is remarkable and when I think back the following were major milestones for me!!!!
today we had one huge milestone, she had her first shopping related tantrum lol..
we saw some cute sunglasses for toddlers,
i put them on her,
we smiled in the mirror,
THEN i tried to take them off to put them back and she began screaming ,kicking her legs, throwing her head back and baiscially going alll crazy on me..
I couldnt help but laugh its sounded like the beginning of the end lol

7 months..
she grew an attitude..
she starting displaying anger when she didn’t get what she wanted..
and shouting/babbling instead of just crying to express herself.
She also learnt how to pretend to be sad so mummy could rush over and then flash me a brilliant smile..
another great one is clapping, all of a sudden just like that last night she looked at us and clapped her little hands !
and finally sounds..’Dada’..’Nana’ ..im sure ‘mama’ is just around the corner lol

6 months..
loads of drool,
fever and pain led to two awesome little bottom teeth!And if that wasn’t major enough.. she started babbling..making loads of great sounding noises, only intelligible to other babies 6 months of age.

4 months..
she sat down unaided..
well with a little balance issue but still..
sitting hoorah.!
Super interested in grown folks food and extremely excitable

6weeks..she smile at us.
#mummydiaries #babymilestones

Apr 29, 2014

Sorry!!!

there is no excuse for how long it has been since I posted.. the truth is well with this lovely little baby , i barely have two free hands free at once to type!!1
now she is older , things have more of a routine feel and im back on hair issues.
I learnt a couple of things during my blogging absence..

1. Swedish weather does not suit my natural hair... im all frizzed up and flat every single day!!!! there is just no bounce in my hair
2. I miss the locs
3. Braids are life savers!!

so im thinking i might start up the locs again this summer... :)

In other news met with a community of people involved and in love with black hair so thats truly promising..

This food business..

So we exclusively breasted until baby girl was four months and then one day we were eating baguette sandwiches and she launched herself towards the bread with total determination.
l So we got the message and started her on solids,
that was when she was 4 months..
we ate the shop bought eko mashed baby food and fruit, well enough but never with much ‘gusto’.
Baby refused all porridge, baby formula, milk all the regular good stuff but she seemed to like the fancy stuff like salmon and beef etc..

I spent sooooooooooooooo much time making her mashed foods, cooking , pealing, pureeing.
Trust me, after all that effort, you feel like crying when baby purses her lips together with a determined no!

But you live and learn, after much experimenting..we have finally figured out our 7 month old,
she basically just doesn’t want baby food..
she wants , what we are having.. no matter how spicy the meal lol…
so I have progressed from purée duty to cooking mini meals, identical to ours but a little less this.. and a little less that and is working really well..
Her favourite ‘food’ is now chicken, and she especially loves sucking on the bones! Apparently sucking on chicken bones is good on sore gums from teething too..

She still eats my pureed fruit, so I’ve found shortcuts to make my life easier with those..
so for you mommas out there .. here is a quick fix for baby fruit puree
1. Buy smoothie fruit from your frozen foods counter
2. Add a couple of fresh fruit ..i often use pears or apples
3. Peel apple and pear..
4. Cut in little chunks , put in a pan with water and boil down till soft..
5. Mash it all up with a spoon and your done! :D
#mummydiaries #feedingtoddlers #easybabyrecipe

Apr 27, 2014

Pregnancy...

SO I always thought pregnancy would be tough...
and indeed it was for me...
let me just run through a couple of memorable highlights...
For one, I, Miss efficient -can -do -anything-in -the world simply lost my brain!
No seriously, with pregnancy came memory loss, the amount of times I went to the store with no purse is too many to count...or even better, stand at the till and have no idea what my card pin code is..I don’t know what it is about pregnancy, but honestly I became ditzy! Literally...

In the first few months, there is also the need for sleep.
I could pass out anywhere, on the bus, in class, in the playground (bearing in mind I’m a teacher you can imagine, how great that was).
Add to that the fact that you’re not really allowed coffee through pregnancy, it just made for one great Mission Impossible.

Morning sickness is a con.
What it really is, is the need to throw up randomly throughout 9months at any point of time or place.
Mine were often triggered by the smell of a supermarket rarely in the morning ..:p

Random food cravings:
I did pretty good with that one... for about 2 weeks I ate only quiches but aside from that I was good.
I did however develop a little sweet tooth.
Before pregnancy I hated pastries and deserts of all sorts..
And trust me I’ve tried, living in Paris was desert heaven, but none of it was for me..
HOWEVER during pregnancy I started eating cookies and cakes and candy.. 

The little kicks and flutters in your ever expanding waist are also totally marvellous.
The rest was fine except my constant apprehension about the birth..
not just because you know, you need to push a little human being out.. But I’ve always had a fear of hospitals so my anxiety was irrational and rational all at once.
I psyched myself into it though and planned a lovely natural birth with as little as possible intervention and calmly awaited the due date.
And then suddenly, 2 weeks too early.. baby was delivered by c-section,
my first full on operation ever!!!
It was actually really fine and quick..
We felt the worst was over, our little girl was born absolutely perfect and gorgeous.
Just like that I now needed to share my husband’s heart with another girl
Just like that my entire world literally shifted into a new focus.
#mummydiaries #pregnancy #newmummy

Apr 26, 2014

The Chronicles...Super Girl to Pregnancy

I am a focused person.
I've always known the direction I wanted to go in, and followed my goals with all the determination I could muster.
I'm well travelled and have gathered a world of experience.
All this to say it takes a lot to really throw me off balance and yet this year has been just that...a complete game changer!!!
I faced something that hit me with a cartoon like KAPOW! and nothing , no book, no one could have prepared me for this...

All my life I’ve kept the old school, book diaries and recently through my Facebook updates I’ve kept track of this whole journey, but I feel it’s time to join on the social media bandwagon and start blogging about it..
I hope only to share my experiences; I am no parenting guru or what not, just a mom who really is living something spectacular that deserves chronicling!
Oh yes, big words for such a big experience innit ..:p
So let me tell you about me,
..I love children, when I was about 8 I decided I was going to work with kids and I have, at university, after university, through my career and even on holidays I would volunteer to work with kids.
Recently I started working as a preschool teacher. So children are always and have always been around me. In 2012 I worked with toddler’s everyday! Some peoples nightmare, to me totally enjoyable and challenging in the best way possible...

So when I got pregnant in 2013, I was super excited but totally unafraid.
I was like... “yeah this is going to be great, I’ve been in training for this my whole life!!."
Also I have an amazing husband, the kind who supports you and cares, does housework, loves children, long walks and PDA :D.
together we felt like having this baby was truly going to be GRAND!
and we could do it..Easy breezy...
What I learnt 9 months later was a shocking and considering all the mummy’s I know, I can’t believe no one told me it was going to be like this... so here we go, I’m sharing our journey for your giggles and consideration. #mummydiaries #newmummy

The First Few Weeks

So the first things after super long cuddles...constant elation..tears of happiness..and a million photos..you attempt the all important breastfeeding. I knew some people needed support but , I mean everyone I’ve seen breastfeed they just do it like it’s the simplest most natural thing in the world! So I was kinda thinking I’ve had this baby and even had an operation so clearly the worse is over, now we just need to heal, recover get some sleep and go home..Be happy THE END lol Someone should have smacked me silly, the glorious challenge called motherhood was just beginning. Breastfeeding was something that I was and still am 100 percent committed to. I personally believe that it is important and preferable if possible to breastfeed so I was actually excited to nurture my baby in that way. Little did I know there was latching , cracked bleeding nipple, proper positioning and pain to consider!!! it probably took a month to get over the breastfeeding pains. Accomplishing that made me feel like a true champion I can tell you that! Somehow though, i felt like i totally ill prepared for breastfeeding..again, i wish someone had toldme that more often than not, it takes patience and perseverance to get it to 'work.' No one told me that babies do not just naturally breastfeed,my mistake for assuming. I’m telling you , it’s one of those things that took a while to get the hang of, but now it’s done… baby and mummy are happy campers! Another thing, I remember everyone telling me ,get as much sleep as you can but again , no one ever explained why!?!?! Well here is why …my baby needed to be woken every 2-3 hours for feeding..I almost never slept in-between those feeds so we were truly zombified… Zombified, is the term I coined to describe the low functioning happy state that I generally was in for those first couple of months.. What makes it even more insane is the myriad of feelings that surge ranging for nurturing to protectiveness around the baby. I may have been tired but nothing was more important that baby being comfortable, warm, fed and happy. And she was tiny , beautiful and just too amazing. When she yawned my heart would melt like butter each and every time. We never felt more joy in our lives as we did those first few weeks. Corny as it sounds those movie lines “ I would do anything for you” all started to ring true. just a little note : during these first few weeks its probably not wise to do as i did and make significant decisions like whether to move house or cut off 7 year old dread locks as these decisions may not be sound!! :p #mummydiaries #breastfeeding