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At 00:1038 on Saturday 19th January I uploaded an instagram post “HOORAH!!! ๐Ÿ‘ ๐Ÿ‘ ๐Ÿ‘ Finally I can say #Peanutisonthewayโฃ๏ธย ๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ’™ We’ve just arrived at the hospital. My daughter has been having on-off contractions throughout the day and night before, but now they’re coming full on. Hold thumbs all goes well ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ’•”

Peanut is on the way

And so it came to pass, right on schedule at exactly 40 weeks from conception, in the wee hours on the morning of the 19th January 2019, prospective parents and ready packed suitcase in the car, we set off on what we hoped would be the real deal….the arrival of baby Jamie. We checked in at the QEQM and straight to the labour ward. All week we had been focusing on room 8 since that was the room with the birthing pool as well as which it was large enough to accommodate the 3 of us as well as my daughter’s Doula and the midwives.

lucky number 8

lucky number 8

On the way we contacted her Doula, Maisie, who lives in Deal and she arrived not long after we did.

After a quick check of all mother’s vitals, baby’s vitals and some monitoring they decided, after about 40 minutes that she wasn’t yet far enough along to stay in and suggested we go home, that she have a nice warm bath and come back later. Besides which the cramps/pains had subsided by then.

00:38 on the 19th – Maisie (Doula), Mummy and Daddy waiting for Peanut

Home we went….at about 4am 19th January. We prayed all the way that Room 8 would still be available when we returned. Fortunately home was then only a 10 minute drive away.

Less than 2 hours later I phoned the labour ward once again and advised them – I didn’t ask if it was ok this time…I TOLD them – we are on our way back!! When we arrived, they confirmed that yes, she was now in full-on labour, 5cms dilated with what we had correctly classified as proper contractions, coming thick and fast and PAINFUL!! Taking her breath away. How my heart ached for her.

Thankfully Room 8 was still available and we settled in for the long haul….this was it and finally I could say…..

PEANUT IS ON THE WAY hoorahhh!!!

We set up the room as best we could with the candles and lights she wanted….but frankly she was already so well advanced that she was only aware of it all in the periphery of her mind…..her Mama instincts were in full flow and she could only focus on one thing….breathing through the contractions. As she has said herself, if we had stayed in the first time around earlier that morning, she would probably have enjoyed setting up the room, getting into the pool earlier and just relaxing in that environment. But as it turned out, by the time all that happened, she was too far along to really enjoy it all.

In due course we asked if they would fill the birthing pool, since she was keen to have, if not an actual water birth, then at least her labour in the pool. As baby was breech, it wasn’t really conducive to or safe for a water birth. It was hard going by now as she was having very strong contractions and in a lot of pain. But with careful guidance and assistance from us all, we got her safely settled into the warm water. Her husband stripped down to his swim trunks and settled in beside her to offer support. Maisie and I hovered around and provided support between vitals being checked and by now, gas provided by the midwives….who I might add were amazing.

in the birthing pool

19/01/19 – 08:22 in the birthing pool – beautiful beyond compare

At some point the Consultant that had upset them both so much a week before by insisting that because baby was breech that she HAD to have a c-section, brought in the ‘big boss’; the head Consultant – despite their constant protests and saying that they wanted a natural birth as far as was possible, he insisted that it was God’s will.ย  How I restrained myself from slapping him for making such a stupid comment is beyond me. Seriously??? An induced c-section is NOT safer than a natural birth and mothers have delivered breech babies for centuries…my daughter was herself a breech baby (albeit eventually a c-section due to sudden complications). As far as the pregnant parents were concerned, they were in the right place if there was an absolute necessity to deliver by c-section.

By now my daughter was in a tremendous amount of pain and focusing only on the contractions and the imminent birth. This woman, who shall remain nameless, marched in like some Nazi surgeon and despite the position my daughter was in, bent down at the side of the pool and insisted that she, my daughter, tell her all the dangers of proceeding with a breech birth. Wtaf???? At which point my son-in-law absolutely lost it…..he rose up out the water like some sort of underwater god, water streaming off his body, and with his hand pointing in her direction, told her to “fuck off out of here right now”. LOL If you knew my son-in-law you’d know that that was so totally out of character as to be like chalk and cheese. He doesn’t ever swear. Long story short…..the two consultants left pretty pronto.

Meanwhile the contractions were now becoming so powerful and so painful that my daughter could no longer keep herself upright and we were becoming fearful she may slip under the water. She struggled to stand and was so weak that she could barely lift her head never mind stand up to get out the pool. So, as she recalls, I put on my Mother voice and with all the Mama power I could muster, I spoke right into her ear and pretty much commanded her to “get up and get out the pool”. Which gave her the strength to actually get up.

From there on things got hazy and crazy with the pain escalating and the midwives in and out. Trying all sorts of different positions that were really not at all ideal, they eventually brought her a birthing stool and finally she was in a comfortable enough position to give birth. It didn’t take long before we saw baby’s wee bottom appear and as he slowly made his was into the world we all did our best to comfort and ease Mummy’s pain. We took turns to hold her hand, mop her brow with a cold cloth, rub her back and shoulders while the midwives provided the gas and medical advice. So far, so good.

Suddenly his legs popped out and then his wee body and arms and shoulders…..very nearly there.ย  A breech birth is really difficult to witness and frankly I was terrified…..but I kept my wits about me and kept taking photos and videos so they could have a record of the birth. They had the absolute best midwife in attendance that you could ever wish for in this world. Although this was her first breech delivery, she was calm and collected and reassuring, offering guidance and a commentary of where he was and how he was progressing. Suddenly and apparently not ideally, his body went white as he prematurely drew breath…but his head was not yet born and now she had seconds to get him out. With the Granny on the sidelines shouting “don’t pull him” she gently slipped her fingers into the birth canal hooked her fingertips above his cheek bones and with a deft sideways twist she slipped his head out. 12:45 on the 19th January 2019 our beloved baby boy was born.

But, now he wasn’t breathing, so she rubbed him down vigorously and gave him a solid thumping. My heart stopped LOL I’d never seen a baby being thumped like that…and you know how fragile we ‘think’ they are. She quickly passed baby over to the midwife on standby who rushed out the room to put him on a ventilator, and returned less than a minute later with baby Jamie lustily yelling… “Hello world, I’m born!!”. Hurrah, he had breathed on his own. What a CHAMPION!!!

Mummy, Jamie and Daddy

19.01.19 at 12:46 Mummy, Jamie and Daddy

It was crazy after that. We were all crying, the midwives were checking vitals, my daughter went into meltdown, and Daddy was sobbing. She simply couldn’t handle all the emotion and was still struggling to deliver the afterbirth and just couldn’t hold the baby, so instead I gave baby Jamie, all 7 lbs of gorgeous newborn to Daddy for some precious skin to skin. To our amusement and Daddy’s intense embarrassment, baby immediately tried to latch onto his nipple hahaha

skin to skin with daddy

19.01.19 13:02 precious skin to skin time with Daddy

We attended to Mummy and got her settled, wrapped up in a towel and then she was able to hold her precious son. It was such an amazing experience and I am so joyful and grateful that I was there to support them, provide reassurance, my boobs to rest on (for Mummy’s head during contractions), and witness the final stages of Jamie’s incredible journey into this world.

Mummy, Daddy, Granny and Jamie

19.01.19 Mummy, Daddy, Granny and Jamie

My precious daughter is now mother to a beautiful precious little boy….and I am finally a Granny ๐Ÿ™‚

 

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Gosh, how time does fly. It’s been 4.5 months since I last wrote a blog (about toilet paper?? LOL) and so much has happened in the interim I hardly know where to start.

Blogging is one of those things that I need my computer for, and since said computer is, in today’s world, classified as ancient, it takes ages to boot up and by then I’ve lost time & interest. But I recently, with the help of my sister in Cape Town via whatsapp, had an online session and we managed to clear some space which has made it marginally quicker, and so I thought it’s about time I got back to blogging.

I’ve also in the interim logged out of both twitter and facebook….I’m so sick of the rubbish on twitter (I miss the days when you could have a decent ongoing conversation with someone without the bots interfering and sticking their noses in with their vile rhetoric). I logged off facebook recently after a very emotional situation because I needed to separate myself from the emotion and facebook is a thorn in my side anyway (for various reasons). I do miss comment/chatting to my friends though – do we ever talk in real life anymore?

So since I was off both twitter and facebook, both of which voraciously consume your time, I started reading through and clearing out my email inboxes, both of which had in excess of 3,000 unread and unfiled emails. It took a good few hours I can tell you, over a period of about a week, but oh the satisfaction once it was done. It’s amazing how we can even accumulate clutter online. While doing that I also unsubscribed from hundreds of charity emails, petitioning emails and sales advertising emails and now my inboxes are more manageable. I also file the emails I need to keep into their relevant folders immediately after reading them. Now I have about 10 emails pending attention and few starred emails that I need to keep open for various reasons.

So instead of wasting time scrolling through twitter and facebook, I started reading wordpress blogs again, followed a few bloggers whose posts I enjoyed and started proper reading again….and talking of reading, I’ve also started reading books again…..marvellous. The latest book I borrowed from the B&B hostess where I recently stayed… The Secret Dossier of a Knight Templar of the Sangreal. I’ve been interested in the history of the Knights Templar for ages and the book is absolutely fascinating; I’m learning so much.ย  There are quite a few famous places linked to the Knights Templar along the French Camino Route through northern Spain and I hope to visit those when I do the walk. I’ve been lucky enough to visit a few places in the UK with links to the knights…..so interesting.

Of course the main event of the year, and the reason for my tardiness and lack of blogging, was the birth, in January, of my first grandchild One year ago; best news ever, a much desired and much wanted, precious little boy. Life as they say, changed forever. I read a blog today by debs-world that really struck a chord, and on that note I decided to get back to writing so that I can share more about this special little boy and his development. I have dozens of drafts written, but with one thing and another, I never got to actually post them ….. and he is a week away from 10 months old!! The absolute joy of my life. I never knew you could love another human so much.

Besides that I am once again homeless and that has been the cause of so much trauma I cannot tell you. Much as it was heart-rending to leave what has been my home since June this year and for a few years prior to that (just different houses in different towns), it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do and although it nearly broke me in two, it was an absolute necessity for my own sanity.ย  But it’s tough not having a home. I’ve had to once again put all my belongings into storage and that in itself brings a multitude of complications. Every time I want to file documents or get a change of clothes or access my toiletries or whatever it might be that I need or don’t want to carry around, I have to traipse to the storage unit and keep their opening hours in mind. No easy access. It all requires careful planning….and frankly it’s just fucking boring. Cรฉst la vie. However, you can really appreciate the difficulties that people who end up on the streets have. I’m still one of the lucky ones…I have a job (that provides me with a home for two weeks at a stretch) and can pay for storage and a B&B when needed inbetween jobs.

I haven’t done any walking this year either which has added 6 kgs to my weight (gahhhh). Unfortunately my love of food has not abated LOL. And anyway I opted to spend time with the bub rather than go walking. an easy choice really.

I wrote a blog a few months back about the X52 pledge I made and I’m pleased to say that I have stuck to it. Of course I have needed to buy new underwear and socks (I wear through mine a fast pace) and desperately needed a new pair of trainers, which are my daily wear anyway, but fortunately those items are considered necessities and not a luxury.

Besides travelling to various parts of the country for work, I haven’t done much travelling this year either. I was reluctant to stray too far from my delicious grandson, opting instead to spend as much time as possible with him. Sadly now that I no longer live with them, my time with him is going to be cut down to a visit maybe twice a month. It bloody sucks and I miss him so much it hurts. But there it is. I rail against this situation to no avail…..hopefully in time I will get my emotions under control and not feel like I want to scream and jump into the abyss. I am after all just his Granny and not his mother and he does have other grandparents. It is lovely though when I do visit…he gets so excited to see me and giggles uncontrollably. I fear that our bond will eventually wear thin though since he won’t see much of me …and yes I am feeling bereft and very very sad. It’s hard not to when I’ve been such an integral part of his life from before he was born. Having gone right through my daughter’s pregnancy and labour, witnessing him take his first breaths, and then being very closely tied in with his subsequent daily care, looking after him most nights for the first 6 months, leaving was such a wrench…..I confess I am still reeling from the loss. It’s been a horrible 12 days just thinking about it. Still I’m grateful that he’s not in another country and I will get to see him at least twice a month. And I have our Christmas Butlins break to look forward to when I’ll be spending 4 whole days with him….shared with the paternal grandparents of course.

I’m still very active on instagram and love looking through the many wonderful images that get shared, saving links to places I still want to visit and walks I want to do. Gosh there are so many I’ve lost count. Instagram has to be the best travel brochure ever. I’m saving up to buy a campervan so that when my gorgeous grandson is older, I can take him on a multitude of adventures. I hope to eventually buy a motor-home so that I have a permanent residence.

So that’s just a quick catch up and summary of the last few months….I shall now start finalising and posting the articles about the wonderful life of Jamie, my divine grandson…..

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A couple of weeks ago my daughter decided she wanted a ‘birthing blanket’. Something that would be a significant reminder of her labour, besides the obvious ๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ’™ of course ๐Ÿ˜€, and something that I could focus on whilst she’s in labour and therefore keep me calm ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”โฃ๏ธ So we strolled up to the wool shop on the high street one day and she chose a deep maroon colour which is as close to the placental colour as we could find. For the ‘blanket’ shawl she chose one of the patterns I had from before she was born (the price is a good indication of how old it is 38 years+). Its the same pattern I used to knit the jacket in the pic for her as part of her layette.

matinee jacket and shawl

the shawl I’m currently knitting for my daughter

I knitted the jacket for Peanut ๐Ÿ™‚

baby matinee jacket

Exactly the same one I knitted for my daughter when she was a baby, except hers was pale green

Earlier this week she had what we thought was the start of labour, so I cast on the 224 stitches and started knitting… but it petered out…the labour, not the knitting.IMG_20190123_145327_175

I’ve taken it with me to the hospital for the last 2 visits and although I didn’t get much done, its a start. ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€ I hope to start knitting again soon because it would mean that #Peanutisonthewayโฃ๏ธ ๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป ๐Ÿ’™ I’m knitting in the strands of wool left over from all the little jackets I’ve knitted for him so far.

I have to keep reminding myself to breathe ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ It’s almost 40 weeks now and we’re hoping he starts his incredible journey from womb to world soon….

I’m busy transferring photos from phone to Dropbox so as to have plenty of space for baby photos. I found some Thomas the Tank Engine books at the charity shop earlier this week. I loved that one of the engines in the book is called James ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ’™ Close enough to Jamie (now his chosen name, as opposed to the original choice of James) And a poetry book is a must. Its not like we have a shortage of books for him, however I had to get it for my little Peanut. Daddy read it to him that same night. My son-in-law Simon, has been a phenomenal partner for my daughter during her pregnancy, a massive tower of support, and most especially the last few weeks.

becoming a granny, first time parents, first pregnancy

12.05.2018 still with tears of joy and disbelief in their eyes…their first scan…there’s a baby on the way

He’s read a story to Jamie just about every night almost from the beginning of the pregnancy ๐Ÿคฐ and has kept a diary of events and things that have happened since they first discovered they were pregnant. This baby is so fortunate to have 2 amazing parents who both have such incredible levels of integrity and respect and will instil in him their best values and beliefs.

It’s not long to go now and we’re ready for you baby boy โฃ๏ธโฃ๏ธโฃ๏ธ

I really cannot wait to say #Peanutisontheway โฃ๏ธ

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BIRTH ORDER OF CHILDREN
1st baby:
You begin wearing maternity clothes as soon as your doctor confirms your pregnancy.
2nd baby:
You wear your regular clothes for as long as possible. ย  ย 
3rd baby:
Your maternity clothes ARE your regular clothes.


Preparing for the Birth:
1st baby:
You practice your breathing religiously.
2nd baby:
You don’t bother because you remember that last time breathing didn’t do a thing.
3rd baby:
You ask for an epidural in your eighth month.


The Layette:
1st baby:
You pre-wash newborn’s clothes, color coordinate them, and fold them neatly in the baby ‘ s little bureau.
2nd baby:
You check to make sure that the clothes are clean and discard only the ones with the darkest stains.
3rd baby:
Boys can wear pink, can ‘ t they?

Worries:
1st baby:
At the first sign of distress–a whimper, a frown–you pick up the baby.
2nd baby:
You pick the baby up when her wails threaten to wake your firstborn.
3rd baby:
You teach your three-year-old how to rewind the mechanical swing.


Dummy:

1st baby:
If the dummy falls on the floor, you put it away until you can go home and wash and boil it.
2nd baby:
When the dummy falls on the floor, you squirt it off with some juice from the baby ‘ s bottle.
3rd baby:
You wipe it off on your shirt and pop it back in.

Nappies:

1st baby:
You change your baby’s nappy every hour, whether they need it or not.
2nd baby:
You change their nappy every two to three hours, if needed.
3rd baby:
You try to change their nappy before others start to complain about the smell or you see it sagging to their knees.

Activities:
1st baby:
You take your infant to Baby Gymnastics, Baby Swing, and Baby Story Hour.
2nd baby:
You take your infant to Baby Gymnastics.
3rd baby:
You take your infant to the supermarket and the dry cleaner.

Going Out:
1st baby:
The first time you leave your baby with a sitter, you call home five times.
2nd baby:
Just before you walk out the door, you remember to leave a number where you can be reached…
3rd baby:
You leave instructions for the sitter to call only if she sees blood.

At Home:
1st baby
: You spend a good bit of every day just gazing at the baby.
2nd baby:
You spend a bit of everyday watching to be sure your older child isn ‘ t squeezing, poking, or hitting the baby.
3rd baby:
You spend a little bit of every day hiding from the children.

Swallowing Coins:

1st child:
When first child swallows a coin, you rush the child to the hospital and demand x-rays.
2nd child:
When second child swallows a coin, you carefully watch for the coin to pass.
3rd child:
When third child swallows a coin, you deduct it from his pocket money.

Pass this on to everyone you know who has children . . . or everyone who KNOWS someone who has had children … (The older the mother, the funnier this is!)

GRANDCHILDREN:
God ‘ s reward for allowing your children to live!

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