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My birth and how prepared for it.

27 Jun

I’ve had hundreds of emails, tweets, Facebook messages asking about my labour whether i did hypno birth or meditation the answer was no. So I thought I would run through the whole process of exactly what I did.

My story began as soon as I found out I was pregnant, I knew that I had to get my mind and body aligned so that they were completely in tune and both working in the right direction.

I started the research of child birth and read every possible bit of literature in relation to a good birth, I gathered all the information and made my own assessment and came up with this,
I believe we were created by God and put on this earth to populate it, every aspect of our body was designed to make this process happen, from the fact that women were designed with a womb, ovaries and breasts, everything you need to carry and care for a new life, if this was the case then our bodies are made to cope, I knew what I needed to do and I trusted the mechanics of my body to do the job efficiently,

Here are a few things I researched that helped with my birth

King Louis XIV;
I found out a very interested fact about
Louis XIV who made his wife give birth lying down so that he could watch the future king being born, prior to this mothers would squat or stand up as it’s proven that it is easier to labour in this position, this new trend became popular not only for the women but for the convenience of the doctors as delivering babies from mothers lying on tables is much easier to do than if they are squatting, standing, or on hands and knees too. Sometimes, doctors today will even tell us that it is for our own safety that we delivery on our backs, but is that true? I thought that women for years were having no problem squatting so if it was good enough for them then it was good enough for me.

Animals and their habitat;
Another thing I researched about was how animals give birth, essentially we are animals and we can learn so much from our 4 legged friends, when an animal is giving birth the environment they surround themselves in are essential to the labour process, take this for example, when a sheep is due to start labour, it will leave the rest of the flock and find a quiet corner of the field where there are no distractions, it almost always happens at night so there are no bright lights to startle them, if a predator happens to take advantage of the sheep, the labour process will slow down as adrenaline kicks in and fear will stop the labour going any further until they find a safer place. The main thing an animal desires is a quiet, safe and comforting surrounding

Water birth;
A French doctor came up with the concept of water birth in the early eighties, his theory was that water can act as a counter balance to adrenaline, it soothes the muscles, therefore relaxing you, another interesting point he makes is that water births take away most, if not all intervention from doctors, leaving you in control of your body, I don’t know about you but I know my body better than anyone else, especially a doctor, the third point he makes on the subject relates to the environment in which the new born enters the world, for nine months it’s being surround by water and to bring the child out into the same surrounding it is used to stops the baby becoming distressed, as you have probably seen on my birth, Eivissa came out very quiet and relaxed( if you haven’t seen it, log onto the channel 4 website or check out the link on my page)

I found all the above very interesting and very true of what our experience can be like, I too wanted a quiet, serene atmosphere, low lighting and to feel safe and without fear. When your body is in it’s most relaxed state then your state of mind will follow, often after we get home from a stressful day at work, a nice hot bath will make us feel relaxed and clear our thoughts but if we come home from work and talk about our stressful day, then we remain stressed and tense, apply this situation to child birth, if we approach it in a calm, relaxed state, free from fear and focused on the end result then we are never going to give the opportunity for adrenaline (which acts against our body in the berthing experience ) to occur and make the process difficult or even slow.

The start
Late Thursday evening I felt what seemed like a period pain, I had a dull back ache that would work it’s way round to my front in waves, the feeling came and went perhaps 6 times in the next 24 hours but didn’t really cause me any concern,

7pm; Friday evening was when the dull aching turned into mini contractions, each one lasting 15 to 30 seconds and happening every 9-15 minute, you know that it’s a contraction because it feels like the wave you get when you have a period pain, the first few hours of these were fine and I was even able to go to McDonald’s( I reccomend chicken Mayo burger, small fries and sprite) perfect labour snack, hehe!

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In labour in McDonald’s

10pm; the contractions became more intense, I was still able to move around but once a contraction came I found laying on the bed with my knees against my chest eased them. I called the hospital at this point and told them my symptoms and they advised that it is the early stages of labour and to stay home and keep relaxed

2am; contractions coming hard and often, every 3-5 minutes, decided to speak to my cousin in America who just had a great birth, she told me to focus on one spot in the room, to imagine my body was floating, letting each contraction wash over me, this exercise was brilliant and really helped me focus. I called the midwife again just to let them know my progress and we both agreed that should stay at home as long as I could.

5am; decided to have a bath, played some really soothing music and was softly singing songs to my tummy.

9am; I got to the point where my contractions were every 5-6 minutes consistently, the feeling was very intense and at times took me off my balance, I called the hospital and we all agreed it was time to come in.

The contractions continued as I travelled into hospital, Danny drove and was keeping me calm and relaxed,
I think it’s very important that your partner is in tune with your wants and desires, he knew what I wanted and the experience I was hoping for, if your both pulling in the right direction then if one is struggling in an area then the partner is there to pull you back up. Danny knew my birth plan inside out so if for whatever reason I wasn’t in a state to say what I wanted then he knew what was going to be best for me! As we entered the ward they put our microphones on and directed us to the water birth suite which thankfully was free. Once inside, the midwife asked to examine me internally just to see how far dilated I was, I was fine with this as it gave me an indication of how far I’ve got to go,
I laid on the bed and my surprised midwife informed me I was over 4cm dilated, she started to fill the birthing pool( takes about an hour to fill) and I decided to keep active and walk around the birthing suite, I found that during contractions I felt most comfortable sitting on the toilet, weird, I know, but it worked
The birthing pool was ready, the water is the same temperature as the womb and needs to be kept at this temperature, I kept active in the pool, standing,sitting, squatting, dancing, anything that felt comfortable.

Throughout my labour I wanted to have music playing and Danny wanted to be connected with me so we shared an iPod and listened to some soft soothing gospel music. Danny was amazing at encouraging me, he knew that his support to me was invaluable and that his positive words were helping me to stay focused on the goal!

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I kept my breathing controlled and found that listening to music helped me keep a rhythm, I didn’t let myself have any freak out moments as I wasn’t going to slip out of my zone, after 10 minutes of pushing my waters broke( this can happen anytime in labour),it was like a water balloon bursting in mid air, I think me and Danny did a high five! Then the midwife informed my that she could see the crown of my baby’s head and I knew that I wanted to push as my body was telling me to do so, through out my labour the midwife didn’t intervene in any way, only to check my heartbeat after a contraction, when I told her I was ready to push, she said go for it, after my first push I asked if the baby was going to come out of my bum, I was convinced it was going to come out of there but she assured me that it wasn’t, the midwife told me that the head was visible and to give a big push, 2 pushes later, the head was out and I only needed another 2 pushes before Eivissa was fully out.

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I then took her from the water and laid her straight on my chest and began to cry tears of joy! We wanted to wait until the chord stopped pulsating before Danny cut it, this took about 7 minutes in which time we were able to just stare and admire the miracle that was before us.

The midwife then took Eivissa to be weight and checked and she immediately passed her back to me so I could breast feed her. She must have been hungry as she latched on straight away and started sucking, the bond I felt in this moment was the closest bond I have ever felt to anything in my life, looking down at her, I knew that she was dependent on me to care and look after, she was the image of perfection and the overwhelming love was uncontainable, I was already so proud of her even tho she was less than 30 minutes old!

At the end of the day it’s called ‘labour,’ the very definition of the word means ‘physical work, done by people’, it’s not always going to be easy but the end result is so worth it! I would recommend it to anyone!

What an incredible feeling and perfect experience I had, I thank, firstly, my husband, for standing with me in every single area of the process, for supporting, loving and caring for my wants and needs, secondly I thank the hospital staff, from the tea ladies to the incredible midwives, each and every one of you are angels and last to my closest friends and family who encouraged my wants, even if at times they didn’t understand them, they still believed in me!

Some of the books I read were
‘Childbirth without fear’ by Grantly Rick-dick
‘Birth Reborn’ by French obstetrician Michael Odent
‘Supernatural childbirth’ by Jackie Mize

When reading books don’t take everything as a fail proof formula. Pick and chose what u feel suits you and apply it to your life. Every experience, person and baby is different but what you can learn from books can be amazing

the gift of positive thinking

28 Aug

As you probably know I’m a very positive person, the reason I’m like this is because I choose to be, it’s how I deal with life and ive found that in every situation if I can focus on the good rather than the bad then it can only be beneficial for me.

Some people may look at me and think that I have it all together, like my life is perfect and trouble free, I’m just like everybody else, I have my own problems, I cry, feel sad sometimes and I have to deal with the same things we all go through but the one thing that I find helps me in all this is to look at the big picture of my life and to stay positive.

I know throughout my journey, I’m going to have bumps and turns but they are put there to test and help make me stronger, I’m committed to turn my troubles into victories, to make my sad days, happy ones and to cling onto the tiniest bit of positivity I can find in any situation.

I think a lot of the reason I view life like this is because of my mother, when she was just 17 years old, she moved from Colombia to come study in London, she found her time quite difficult and at times very lonely.
She later moved to Bradford where she met my father and got married and set up home, they then decided to start a family but sadly suffered a couple of miscarriages before giving birth to me.
I was mum and dads little miracle but the doctors soon discovered I had breathing problems and that my chances of survival would be very slim, thankfully I pulled through and mum and dad went on to have 2 more children, Steven and Joy.
Sadly Steven lost his life in an accident when he was just 7 years old, leaving the whole family shattered and broken but mum was determined not to let these things steel joy from her life but turn everything around.

The reason I’m sharing all this is because on paper it looks like my mum has had a very hard life, her circumstances haven’t been the best and having to deal and cope with some of the things she has been through would make most people bitter, angry and negative to the world, rather, my mum has taken all her heartache and turned it into something positive, she realised very early on that her outlook on life will effect me and my sister and even though at times it may have hurt to smile and be positive, she still did it, she always clung onto the tiniest bit of joy in every situation and made that her mission in life.

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Me and my Mummy

I began to look at other positive friends in my world and noticed something. That their mothers have all had to deal with tragedy or emmence pain in their lives. I realised that these women had passed on this amazing gift of ‘positivity’ to their children which has gone on to effect how they see their own lives.

My Aunt is in her 60s and has the most amazing story, she was rescued from the streets of Colombia and adopted into my mothers family, she suffered personel losses and had to cope growing up without a mother or father. She later married an English man and had 2 beautiful girls, Joanna and Vanessa. She doesn’t look to the negatives in her life which for a time there was a lot, but is thankful for what she has been given. Her daughters have grown into wonderful women, the eldest a business women and mother of three and the youngest a talented musician and composer who works along side her husband. They both live life to the full and make the most of everything life sends them.
It would be easy to assume that this family have got it all together but the choices my aunt has made has in turn led the family to grow up and be thankful for the smallest things.

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Me and my beautiful cousin Vanessa

Another amazing person in my life is one of my closest friends, she is a talented photographer and one of the most positive people I know. Her mother is a wonderful women who lives life to the full and is always smiling! You wouldn’t tell by her outlook on life that when she was 28 years old her husband passed away leaving behind 5 children, the eldest 9 and the youngest Jojo just 12 months.
She did everything in her power to give her children the best she could and raised them all brilliantly, all the kids are grown up and they remain a very close and happy family with the determination to live life and make the most of everything.

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Me and my friend Jojo

Sometimes we need to just stop for a second and look at our lives, we all have bad stuff happen to us everyday, none of us are immune to it, the stories above prove that, but don’t stay too long in the negative, it will only haunt you, try and find a glimpse of positivity and hopefully it will help.

I can’t tell you how important it is to pass this down to your children, every day I’m trying to teach Eivissa and encourage her in everything she does, just as my mum did with me, I’d like to think these values are fundamental to shaping how we assess our situations.

Thank you to my Mum and Dad that I get to wake up every morning and be thankful to God for what I have and to strive to make the most of life because everyday is precious.

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Mum and me as a baby, me and Eivissa

A wonderful birth even though it didn’t go to plan, Rebecca’s story

6 Feb

I thought it would be great for you to read a birth story from a friend of mine.

We don’t see each other that much as she lives in another city, but we catch up every so often. She had heard about my birth experience and wanted to talk to me as she too was expecting.

Rebecca was excited about giving birth but was feeling bogged down with the negativity from others, I told her the ‘ins and outs’ of my labour and explained about getting your mindset right and believing for the best, hopefully she was going to have the experience she was hoping for.

Here is her story….

Monday 2am, my contractions had started, they continued throughout the day and into the following night up until Tuesday at 1am when they were becoming quite intense and happening every 5 minutes, it was time to go to hospital. I was feeling very positive and on a high that soon we were going to meet our baby.

I arrived at the hospital and as I lay on the bed being examined my waters broke meaning they weren’t able to do any more internal checks due to risk of infection, at this point the midwife said I was 2cm dilated, ‘what, 2cm?’ I was convinced that I was much further than this, after all I had been in this state for 24 hours. Disheartened, scared and feeling in some discomfort I was offered some drugs which I was hoping to do without but I put my plans to one side and followed the doctor’s advice, took some pethadin and got some rest.
The midwife came in a few hours later to send me home as I wasn’t progressing, We all agreed it was the best thing to do and off we went. This labour was definitely taking longer than expected!

By the time we reached home the drugs had worn off, I pulled myself together, refocused my mind and took control of my situation. I wanted to have a normal day, so normal that I decided to bake some brownies (who was I kidding?) , after my ‘not so successful attempt at baking’, we decided to go for a walk and keep as active as possible in the hope that my labour might speed up.

Once home from our walk, I noticed that I was wet down below, I called the midwife who asked several questions, one being if my baby had been active, I advised her that there hadn’t been much movement for a while and this is when she ordered my back in.

Back in the hospital they put me on a monitor to measure our baby’s heart rate as every time I had a contraction the heart rate dropped, this meant I couldn’t move around or have the water birth I was hoping for. During this time they attempted another internal but the implement they were using wouldn’t go up, upon closer look, the doctor realised the babies head was in the way and I was in fact 10cm dilated, woohooo, I had gone 8 cm all by myself. The next process was to put me on a drip to get my contractions closer together, once this was in the doctors gave us some time alone, we began to pray and believe for calm and peace in the room, my husband’s hands were placed on my tummy and those last few hours were amazing. Even the midwife commented on the feeling she felt when she walked in the room.

A new doctor took over and informed me that my bladder was too full and it would be difficult to get the baby out without it being drained, several litres later (we actually had a laugh at how much was stored up) I was ready to go, one of the midwives mentioned using forceps to get the baby out as it had been such a lengthy process but thankfully none were needed and several pushes later on Wednesday morning at 8.22 am, little Alfie was born weighing 8lbs 3.5oz, a truly wonderful moment.

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Baby Alfie

I came away from my experience so happy, I had stayed positive and this helped me enjoy every moment of giving birth. Even though it didn’t go according to plan I still felt it was everything I could hope for in that moment.

For me, staying positive out weighed any feeling of disappointment I could have had.

Rebecca’s story was great, she seemed to love her experience as much as I loved mine. Our experiences were different but our attitudes were similar and in the end we both got the same out come, an amazing happy birth.Well done Rebecca, you did amazing!!

When I tell my story, I sometimes worry my advice may give women FALSE HOPE. I decided to look this word up to see what the encyclopedia defines it as

FALSE HOPE

The term “false hope” refers to a hope based entirely around a fantasy or an extremely unlikely outcome.

So false hope is believing in something that is not going to happen or is unrealistic. My experience was real and did happen so the hope I am giving women is not false, its true!

I then looked at what ‘hope’ means

HOPE

Hope is the emotional state, the opposite of which is despair, which promotes the belief in a positive outcome related to events and circumstances in one’s life.[1] It is the “feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best” or the act of “look[ing] forward to with desire and reasonable confidence” or “feel[ing] that something desired may happen”

Wow! hope and positivity are amazing things, these are the keys that open the door to the feeling of success and happiness no matter the situation.

My baby routine from birth to 4 months

23 Jan

You may be suprised to hear that I am a believer in having your baby in a routine, as adults, we live our lives loosely based around some sort of routine, we sleep, work, eat, socialise and sleep, the same applies to our children, its not about the routine itself, its about how we adapt to the routine…

I spent a lot of time reading books, looking at other mother’s routines for their babies and assesing the outcomes. I then picked and adjusted a routine that would best suit me and how I wanted to enjoy parenthood.

For this post, I thought you might be interested to know about my daily routine,I like to call it ‘the portable routine.’ My routine has structure, for example the times of her feed, her awake and nap times and her play times are all pretty much around the same time every day but we are not contained to a specific place, we can take this routine and apply it anywhere.

In the first 2 weeks I didn’t fret about putting Eivissa into a routine as I just wanted to enjoy having this new time of getting to know one another, if she needed feeding, I fed her, if she needed to sleep, I cuddled her, I didn’t want to get uptight about certain things, after all she was a newborn and in the first few weeks its so important to create the bond.

I started a loose routine after 2 weeks when I felt I could work out what her cries were saying and I felt more confident with my breast feeding. It was also at this point when I gave her a pacifier, at first I was reluctant, I thought ‘why is she hungry all the time?’ after process of elimination, ie: she has been fed, changed and had a sleep I realised that she just wanted to suck, so I gave in to my own desires and it worked a treat, it actually helped me monitor when she was hungry and when she just wanted to suckle,for me it worked, but if you can do without, great!

When starting your routine, it can be a little tricky, you’r learning just as much as baby is, so don’t be afraid of a bit of trial and error until your routine sticks, stay focused on how you want to do it and stick to your guns, eventually it will click into place, which makes for a happy mummy and a happy baby.

from 2 to 8 weeks
morning 8.30
feed about 30-40 mins
nappy change
wake 10-20 mins
down for nap

afternoon 11.30
feed about 30-40 mins
wake bath
down for nap

mid afternoon 2.30
feed 30-40 mins
nappy change
wake 10 min
nap quite possibly in car or pushchair

late afternoon 5.30
feed 30-40 mins
nappy change
wake
nap

evening 8.30
feed 30-40 mins
nappy change
wake
down for nap

late evening 11.30
feed 30-40mins
nappy change
down for night sleep and bed for us too

middle of night 2.30
feed 30-40mins
back to bed

early morning 5.30
feed
nappy change
back to bed

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This is the routine I set, I adapted the timing etc, if she fed early the rest of her routine would fit accordingly. I would feed every 3 hours, followed by a little of awake time(of course when they are new born they are very sleepy so they may only stay awake for a few minutes), this helped to teach her that she doesnt need food to fall asleep. the older she got, the longer awake time she wanted.

At 8 weeks old, she started to sleep through the night, at this point her routine became this,

8-16 weeks

early morning 5.00-6.00
feed 15- 20 min
back to bed

morning 8.30
first feed of the day 15- 20 mins
wake play, chat
bath
down for nap

late morning 11.30
feed 10-15 min
nappy change
wake play 20-30 min
out of the house
nap in car/pushchair

afternoon 2.30-3.00
feed 10-15 min
nappy change
wake 20-60 min
nap

early evening 5.30-6.00
feed 10-15 min
nappy change
wake (could be a bit fussy) 30 mins
nap

evening 8.30-9.00
feed 10-15 min
nappy change
wake play on play matt, tummy time 30-60 mins
down for nap

late evening 10.30-11.00
feed 15-20 min
nappy change
down for night sleep
we go to bed

I am now feeding every 3-4 hours and these are rough estimates of times she would feed etc, her feeds don’t take as long now shes older and her awake times are much longer.
During growth spurts and after she had her immunisations we found that she would wake again at night but after 3-7 days she semmed to return to her normal self.

Our routine suits our lives perfectly. For me I like to have the morning to do work and get ready, so we have more of a strict morning routine, then the rest of the day I will take my ‘portable routine’ and implement it where ever I am. If you like to have your evenings to yourself, then have a strict night routine.

My advice is relax!, if baby isn’t quite getting it, then be cool about it, every baby is different and some take longer than others.
Remember, YOU are the mother and YOU know the wants and needs more than anyone else, don’t let anybody tell you what type of mother to be, just be the best you possibly can be for your child.

Our Fashion story, career and babies

19 Jan

Trying to balance a career and parenting at times can be difficult, we all know full well that being a mother is a full time job in itself, although there’s no pay packet at the end of the month.hehe..

Some of you may know that I run a fashion and styling business with my husband Daniel, we started the company in 2003 and as in any business, at times it can be very difficult and stressful, but on the flip side I’m so thankful that I get to do what I’ve always dreamt of doing.
At 19 years old we were given the opportunity to work for a tailoring company called ‘Adam Fisher’, these guys were the best in the business and the owner, Dave Bullen gave Danny the chance to learn the tailoring trade, within a few months Danny and Dave were going to London and meeting wealthy businessmen who would require bespoke suits, it was their job to make them look good and to create a perfectly fitted suit. Whilst Danny was away in London I was left back at the factory in Leeds looking after quality control of all the garments that went out, we both loved our jobs and our bosses were very good to us but we all knew that our long term plan was to form our own company.

So, a year later, myself, Danny, Dave and his wife Reina formed a ‘high end’ casual clothing business that specialised in made to measure t-shirts, jeans and jackets. After a few months of trading and a lot of networking later, we were able to secure an appointment with the footballer Rio Ferdinand. Danny and Dave went to the meeting whilst I waited nervously at home, a few hours passed before Danny called to tell me how it all went, ‘So, how did you do??’ ‘we sold 10 garments’ replied Danny, this was huge, we couldn’t believe that England’s most expensive defender had just placed an order with us, that night we couldn’t sleep due to the excitement but our dream wasn’t over just yet, the very next day, one of Rio’s friends, Keiron Dyer, asked to see some of our products, so off to Newcastle we went. He ordered 30 t-shirts and then sent us round to his neighbours house, Craig Bellamy. We then found ourselves designing for Ashley cole, Christiano Ronaldo and other top premiership footballers with in 2 weeks!

Driving home after those first client appointments,we had to pinch ourselves, we were just 2 kids from Yorkshire who had found themselves in the right place at the right time, it just goes to show that a bit of hard work and a dream can pay off.

So our business was off the ground and we continued to build on our expanding client list, we were always trying to push our business forward and make new connections. I remember a trip to New York and we were invited to the launch party of Snoop Dogg’s new album, don’t ask me how we got an invite but I think it was just another case of right place, right time, so in we walk to this ‘press only’ launch party, clearly we were not the press but as we approached security who asked to see our I.D, Danny boldly walked passed them claiming to be an official photograper, next thing I know I’m 2 ft away from Snoop when Danny tells me to go talk to him and give him one of our t-shirts. I said, ‘You do it.’

He replied, “I’m not the one wearing a skirt, he wont be interested in me’.

So I reluctantly approached Snoop and after a while talking I handed him one of our t-shirts, sometimes a bit of blagging can go a long way.

This was our lives for a few years and the thought of children was always a distant thought away, we soon started to realise that our life was always going to be busy and there is never going to be a perfect time for children, after much discussion, Danny and I both agreed that ‘ you make time for what’s important’ and that’s when we decided to start a family

How were we going to juggle a busy business and a new born??I was determined to be the best possible mother I could be and Danny too actively wanted to be involved in the early months , he never wanted to be the type of father that worked away constantly and only saw his child for 5 minutes a day, so we both decided that our child was going to take priority over anything!!!

So how were we going to continue our business and still make our child our priority???? ……….il tell you how!

…..I continued working pretty much up until I dropped, I wanted to get so far ahead in my work so that first few weeks of my life as a mother were going to be stress and work free, the same applied with Danny, I would often stay at home doing little bits of paperwork whilst Danny would leave extra early so he could be home by midday.

Having a child has really opened my eyes, it has made me see things in a completely diferent light, I have found that when I stopped work and became a mother, I was exposed to a whole new world of oppurtunity, it made me think of new ideas and made me regroup and focus on where we wanted to go in our business, that’s when my idea of the ‘glabour’ birthing outfit happened, this is now the focus on our business and where we are going to channel all our efforts into getting it off the ground, so, please buy!!!!!hehehe

I know that my calling in life was to own my own fashion design company and rather than sacrifice my dream I merely just put it to bed until a suitable time to get it back out, 3 months later, I feel ready and the cool thing is Eivissa gets to come to all my meetings(sometimes her cuteness is the deal clincher)

I truly believe that you can have your cake and eat it, for so long we are told it has to be one thing or the other, or you can have this but not that, but I like cake and sometimes I want to eat the whole thing so why the heck shouldn’t I ???

Loving you and your body!

15 Jan

Your body, its a big subject for us girls! We all talk about it and many of us think about it and im sure at times we have had issues with it. It is always nice to feel confident in yourself, i know first hand the constant battle between your mind and body.

Growing up, I never had issues with my body, I could eat what I liked and not
worry about it, I never understood why anyone would read the diet pages in
magazines or why exercise could consume someone’s life, to me, this seemed bizarre until one day my life became just that!

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Me as a care free kid!

I started training about 7 years ago, my aim was to tone up, get fitter and nothing else. At that time I was comfortable in my skin, comfortable in who I was and secure in my mind.
After a few sessions i noticed my body gaining muscle and i started to feel much bigger, which was never my intention. I trusted my trainers routine so I
assumed that it must be my diet that needed to be more strict, as the weeks went by I found myself training harder and being super strict with diet, yet I continued to build more muscle, my whole life became about my new routine of training and eating, I soon found myself in a downwards spiral heading towards this person I never thought would exist, I felt so alone, so ashamed of what I had done to myself, I became insecure, I hated my body and I hated anyone else seeing it. it didn’t take me too long to realize that I had an unhealthy relationship with food and that I was heading towards an eating disorder, it was also at this point that my periods stopped.

As the months went by I realized this was a mind issue. I had to learn to love myself again, to see what my husband saw in me. I thought to myself that
when I get to the other side, I’m going to use my experience to encourage women to love themselves for who they are and to teach them that beauty comes from inner confidence, and once they find this inner beauty then their outer beauty will shine.

I remember a trip to America and that’s when the penny dropped, I thought to
myself that this is not ‘me’, where is that little girl gone that never thought about these things? I needed to take control, i knew i had a problem but the solution to fixing it seemed to difficult to face, i was determined to go back to my old self and by taking control I was confident in going back to the old me.

Fast forward a few years later and thankfully I had managed to become ‘me’ again. With a lot of encouragement from my husband and close friends I became free from the burden of watching what I ate and constantly thinking about my body. I felt healthy, full of life and proud of the new me.

It was at this point that Danny and I decided to start a family, the only problem being that my periods had yet to return, i knew my state of mind was good and my insecurities had gone, i just had to get my body lined up with my mind, thankfully we managed to concieve and I was determined that my little girl would never have to deal with the problems i had, we were going to do everything in our power to make sure she feels beautiful and loved and grow up with so much confidence. i was detemined that she was going to feel beautiful, so much so that we gave her the middle name ‘cali’ which means ‘most beautiful’

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My beautiful Eivissa Cali

When I found out I was pregnant, i was so happy with who i was, i was willing to accept the natural change that my body was going to go through in the next 9 months, rather than get myself down about the weight i was going to gain, i decided to embrace it and accept that the extra fat was for my baby, to protect her and give her the nutrients she needs when breastfeeding, this doesnt mean we have an excuse to ‘eat for two’, by keeping a healthy balanced diet we are looking after ourselves and our babies

In an earlier blog ‘how to dress your pregnant tummy,’ i talk about being ‘house proud,’ this means to love the body you have been given and be proud of it, when you love your homes, you respect them and
take care of them. We should do the same with our bodies.

If we women can learn to love ourselves, then that transmits to others, i can always tell a confident person, by the way they walk and hold their head, you dont need to have model looks and a size 8 body to look good, you can be whatever size suits you, so long as you look after yourself and feel confident then there should be no stopping you, love you for you!!

ive had a few people ask about looking after your body during pregnancy and getting your figure back after.

here are some tips
during pregnancy

*stretch mark oil is amazing, i went through bottles of it.
*don’t over eat, you only need an extra 200 calories per day (the equivalent of 3 apples)
*stay active, if your up to it. i was teaching dance classes at 8 months

To help get your figure back
*breast feeding is great for baby and for you.This is quickest way to get your body back. You can burn up to 500 calories a day!
*go for walks with the push chair or with baby in a carrier
* most important love and stay true to yourself

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Me and Danny 3 months after Eivissa was born

Expect the unexpected

11 Jan

Life doesn’t always run smoothly, Just when we think we have everything under control, we have our routine down to a tee, feeding and sleep patterns are going great then the unexpected happens, baby decides to do what baby wants to do!

A perfect example happened this morning, we were asked to appear on the ‘daybreak’ show on itv to discuss our experience of motherhood and been on ‘one born every minute,’ everything was going to plan, Eivissa was on fine form, smiling and laughing behind the scenes, her outfit looked great and we were all set to make our national tv debut, then, right on cue, live in front of however many millions, Eivissa decides to cry the whole studio down, in that moment my motherly instincts took over and my priority was not the interview but to tend to my Childs needs, as far as I was concerned it was just me and Eivissa in that studio.
We came off air and I automatically felt upset that I couldn’t tell my story in full, but Danny reassured me to keep positive and be thankful that we have been giving this amazing opportunity to appear on tv, i never want to take anything in life for granted, and this was just another thing to be grateful for!

When having a child, the problem is not the unexpected it’s how you deal with the unexpected, life never always goes according to plan, often the route we have planned is not necessarily the route we should be taking, the end destination is always the same but sometimes we have to take a little detour on our journey, we have to accept this fact, obstacles will forever be in our way, so why focus on your situation, instead see the end result that will come out of your circumstance.

I recently read a quote that read 90% of what we worry about never actually happens, which is pretty good odds in our favour I think, so that leaves just 10% of of unexpected ‘things’ that we have to deal with, so if we are prepared to expect some mishaps every now and then be at peace about it, out of every negative you can find a positive!

Understand as a mother, that our tiny little children are just like us, some times they have days when they are more happy than sad, awake more than asleep, this is just part and parcel of everyday life, they are growing every day so just relax about it, embrace the hard days and look forward to all the good ones. This is the joy that we all get to share in being mothers!

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Itv studios