5 Ways I’m Going To Be Different On 2nd Maternity Leave

I’m currently 37 weeks pregnant and I finish work in my 38th week anniversary. The past few weeks I’ve taken it a week at a time and I think I have one more week left in me. I’d love to be at home now relaxing but I want as much time with my baby after the birth as possible. 

I can’t afford to stop working after having my children so I know I’ll be returning to work. I’ll be going back part time this time (I went back full time after my first as I intended to have another baby quite quickly). I learned a number of things with my first baby and with my first maternity leave so I hope I’ll be able to make it through with more confidence this time.

1. I’m expecting to be terrified again.

When I gave birth to my little boy I loved him straight away but there was an anxiety that I wasn’t expecting. It seems that almost anything you do caries a risk factor for SIDS. No parent wants that and so finding tha balance between advice and what works is nerve racking. I think the anxiety is just a form of mothers worry as I still have it now to some extent. I’m hoping that I can enjoy the moment more this time around knowing that this anxiety is coming. 

2. I am going to fight back on people that question my decisions more… especially on breastfeeding.

As a first time mother I was paranoid I would turn into someone who became so over protective that I would hold my baby back. Or even become so different that my friends and family didn’t recognise me any more. I really tried hard to strike a balance but I still feel like I was misunderstood and it left me feeling lonely sometimes. There is no shortage of advice out there for new mothers but it is amazing how many people take offense if you don’t agree. It’s almost like you are treated as ungrateful if you say “thank you but I don’t think that applies to me/my baby”. The biggest issue I had was from people who didn’t understand breastfeeding. I exclusively breastfed my boy and to begin with it wasn’t easy. I enjoyed doing it and despite the sacrifice of having less me time as I needed to be close to my boy I felt it was worth it. 

Others would say that I needed to get out more. When I explained that I could manage an expression or two as a break away from him (he fed frequently) I wouldn’t be in a position to leave him for too long as my milk production would suffer. This would make me dread leaving him for a long time, not because I didn’t want to let my hair down, but because I knew I would have almost a week of getting my routine back and it just seemed too arduous. It loomed over me so I could never really enjoy myself. Maybe I’m just not as milky as some mum’s. I’m ok with it though. I’ll get to have plenty of party time in the future. 

Some people do get offended by this and their comments to convince me to give my baby a bottle instead grate a little. So on that note I’m going to start telling people they are being insulting. If they are taken aback then hopefully they will think about what they have said. Being a mummy is hard enough without having your judgements questions so frequently. 

3. I’m going to keep myself challenged

At the end of my last maternity leave I had a great routine going. I had groups I visited with my boy and I felt in top of my life and how my family was working. It took me some time to get to that point as I lacked early confidence to get out and about. I know I can do it now so I’m going to be a busy bee. This isn’t for everyone though. I’m the type of person that likes to be doing things and having a varied day. It keeps me mentally challenged and this keeps me happier as a person. 

4. I’m going to accept help from more people.

There is often a flood of people who want to help out when your baby is born. This can be overwhelming. I am quite independent and part of me resists help as I see the constant offer of help as someone saying “you aren’t coping very well”. I dig my heels in and say, no I’m just fine. 

The truth is, helping me out just means they get to spend a bit more time with my utterly amazing and charming baby…I mean who wouldn’t? As long as I get enough mummy time, why not let others share in my joy. On the plus side it might even mean less ironing for me to do as well.  I should make a list of jobs now. 

5. I’m going to be generally more confident

I know going from one child to two and it will be a bit of a shock, but hey I’m going to handle it, just like I handle everything. 

I might look back on this post in a year to see how I did. What would be on your list? 

Mothercare XXS Compact Stroller

I just can’t get over how compact this pushchair/stroller is. I have had 2 different cars since having my first child and boot space was always important to me as with children you can never really travel light.

The amount of space a pushchair takes up is enormous and incredibly inconvenient. Whether is a collapsible stroller that needs to be placed on top of shopping bags or a travel system that needs to be built after every car journey, there are definitely drawbacks to any choice of pushchair.

The XXS stroller takes up so little space it is just great for quick trips out and about. Its easy to put up and take down and there is a generous amount of storage for a stroller under the seat. This storage will mostly be taken up with a changing bag as the stroller is so lightweight I wouldn’t trust it to hold my enormous bag on the back. Luckily though I have a little changing pod bag for travelling light with this stroller.

I have a second child on the way now, otherwise this would have been my choice of stroller for going on holiday (flying). I know you don’t really get restrictions on the size and weight of your stroller but I might have tried to get this one though in hand luggage so that I always had it from the gate and some airlines do that but others make you go to oversized baggage.

When the next baby arrives this compact stroller is going to grans. She doesn’t have much space at her house and I know she’ll love taking George out on little trips along the canal to give him some quality time.

The only drawbacks to this stroller are that it can’t lie flat so if little bubba needs a nap it’s not the best stroller. Also although there is a sun shade I never had a rain cover so it’s only a sunny day stroller and I never really had the confidence to have it as my sole pushchair. Maybe when the babies are older and rarely need the pushchair but I’m not in a position to judge that just yet.

Here is a link to the stroller on mothercare (it’s a mothercare exclusive) in case you were interested in having a look.

http://www.mothercare.com/buggies-and-strollers/mothercare-xss-stroller-exclusive-to-mothercare/LD3125.html

 

 

Simple Sunday Stroll to Happiness

Sundays can easily slip away from me. I try to get the house in order for the coming week but if I’m not careful, the time zooms by and I’m left thinking I’ve not really achieved much. 

Today started out slightly differently. Last night my Son spent his first night in his toddler bed. I was half expecting him to be up in the night running around or doing the same at the crack of dawn. He didn’t though. He slept through and woke at his usual time. He sat up in his bed and cried for me. I was hoping he would climb out and explore his room. I guess he hasn’t figured out he can do this yet. 

I did manage to get the house in order in between playing during the morning hours. Outside looked fresh. It wasn’t too cold and with no rain it looked like a good day for a walk. We probably would have gone for a country hike but my pregnancy won’t allow that at the moment. We decided to go to a local park and garden instead in Matlock.

I want expecting so many shops to be open in the town. We had a browse around some shops before unleashing the toddler in the park. 

If there is one thing I have learned today it is: puddles are great fun. Even though George isn’t old enough to jump in them yet, he made a beeline for every puddle in sight and pottered through them. He loves his independence and it was so lovely to just watch him enjoying being free to walk around. 

He doesn’t like to hold hands, he is always suspicious that he will be held back… he’s right. 

There is duck pond near the play park and he chuckled as he shouted “duck”. It was one of his first words as my mum walk take his down to the local canal as a baby to feed the ducks. 

I thought the park would be too big for him but there was a great climbing frame that he was able to decsend on his own to climb up to a large slide. I think we could still be there now if it was up to George: he loved it. That and running in and around the other fixtures. 

The park was really clean and had a soft rubbery floor around most of the fixtures so even when George did stumble he stayed relatively clean. There is also a paddling pool in the park which we didn’t venture into today but I’m certainly looking forward to returning in the warmer months. 

It’s little outings like this that make me so grateful for being a parent. It’s also times like this that make me feel like I’m being a good parent; my husband too. 

It’s the simple things that make us happy. I hope you have had a beautiful day.