Emily’s Blog (20.12.06)

A distinctly average commentary from a new Mum...

Well, I’ve been a Mum for nearly a month now and what a strange and wonderful thing motherhood is! It hasn’t quite been the shock to the system I was warned it might be, being a ‘glass half empty’ kind of person I was prepared for the worst which has served me well I think! Also I was more than ready to leave my old life behind and embrace the joys and challenges, highs and lows of being a parent and all that comes with it

Albert is simply the best thing that has ever happened to me but in some ways the strangest too! At least once each day I have a ‘surreal’ moment where I think things like “how weird, suckling this little creature on my breast” or “there is no way this creature grew and came from inside of me” or even “gosh, there is a third person in the house now!”. I have been tired and I have been in a lot of pain as I recover from the difficult birth but it is all most definitely worth it.

Breastfeeding is proving to be as great-a challenge as giving birth was. Bertie and I appear at the moment to be physiologically incompatible and most feeds (not all thank goodness) end up being a bit of a wrestling match, are painful throughout and afterwards and prove to be frustrating for us both. The assistance of a local breast feeding counsellor (my guardian angel!) is helping things to move in the right direction with fewer feeds being as I describe above but it is slow progress. Albert seems to be getting the hang of feeding better now, which helps, but he has clearly only just realised that he is not getting a supply of food via his belly button! He is gaining weight acceptably too, which means that despite the discomfort, he is getting plenty of food!

Bertie sleeps quite well at night, by many new babies standards anyway! He needs regular feeds throughout the night but he sleeps quite well or at least lies and entertains himself in between . . . the latter sometimes keeps us awake though! He hasn’t quite got the hang of napping during the day! He is quite an alert little fellow and wants to be involved in what is going on or at least watching it or listening to it! This means he will fight tiredness to the point of not being able to get to sleep.

Albert is getting to know me now. He knows my voice and turns his head towards it when he is sitting with someone else and he also looks directly at me and scrutinises me (albeit in a slightly boz-eyed way) when I have him on my knee. He also seems to settle quite well when he is returned to be after being passed around visitors and friends. I can’t wait for a proper smile although I have had a couple of milk-induced ones so far!

One of the loveliest things about being a Mummy is watching Albert with his Daddy. They have bonded well. Simon is fantastic with him and Bertie clearly knows his voice, face and smell and responds extremely positively to him. In fact, Albert’s ‘behaviour’ has been best (i.e. less crying, fewer demands for feeds and more daytime sleeping) on the days when Simon has not been at work and has been able to spend the whole day with us!

So, Christmas is nearly upon us! I managed to get my Christmas cards made before Albert came along and amazingly wrote and posted them in time for Christmas too! We have even managed to get our decorations and trees up (it’s amazing what one can do in the minutes between feeds when one is determined) and our small selection of presents purchased for family members (again before Bertie arrived) are wrapped and under the tree in readiness for distribution. Simon has even been to the supermarket and done the Christmas food shopping – he went at 6.30 am this morning as Albert had us up early! There weren’t many punters in there apparently, just an army of internet-shopping assistants filling trolleys!

Christmas will be very different this year, in a positive way! Simon, Albert and I are having a family Christmas, just the three of us although I am sure there will be some visitors! It is the first time Simon and I have spent Christmas together in 14 years of being a couple and to have Albert join us the first time we do is perfect! I can’t wait! Cooking and consuming Christmas dinner around Albert may prove to be a bit of a challenge though!

So, I will take this opportunity to wish you a Merry Christmas and a very happy and exciting new year. Simon hopes to keep this website relatively up to date with recent photos and video clips (it is important for him to do this as his family live some distance away and can not get the contact with Albert they would like) so if you’re interested, log on regularly for updates on ‘The Adventures of Albert!’.

Emily. X

(PS. Thanks to those of you who have left messages on the website and those of you who haven’t . . . please do!)