Lets Talk About Sex…..

Or rather the lack of sex. There’s an opener for you (no pun intended). Its been 45 days since I pushed Edward out into the world. As I’ve said before, life will never be the same again. Neither I fear, will my vagina.

At a time when I couldn’t feel less attractive, I count my lucky stars that my husband still does. Perhaps its the bigger (soon to be gone) boobs? Anyway, he does, and when I’m still walking about in maternity clothes because I’m carrying a lot of baby weight, alright, alright its excess food weight, its a big boost to me to know that he still thinks I’m sexy. Or perhaps he’s been that deprived for so long he’s slightly delusional? I’ll go with option 1!

Thing is, I feel completely weirded out by my body. Yes, its a thing of total awe and wonder when I think about how it grew, nurtured and kept our baby safe for 9 months. Thats a given, and I hope all Mums feel that way. However, underneath that, all I see is something thats ruined, something that will never be as it was, and more than anything, something that is now functional and not sexual.

I’m not breastfeeding (waits for backlash)…. Thats a topic for another day, but seeing as i’ve mentioned it, he had a poor latch and my supply wasn’t good at all. Moving swiftly on…. So Edward is formula fed, but for the first couple of weeks he did use my milk as food, as a result of that my nipples have had a meltdown and are no longer sure who they are supposed to please! My lovely flat (complete with abs) tummy now feels and looks like a pillow of marshmallow, its former incarnation buried deep under the layers on extra insulation. Generally my frame looks different, the curves are all in the wrong places. My posture is complete shite after lugging around a rather large bump in the last two months of my pregnancy. With a destroyed core, that makes walking tall with a straight back somewhat of a challenge.

Last, but by no means least, we come to the crux, or should that be crotch of the matter? I am terrified of having sex again. I really REALLY want to, but something that I can’t quite pin down is stopping me. At a time when my body doesn’t really feel like mine anymore, that’s the ultimate loss. I go over and over this in my head every day. What’s bothering me? I guess I’m worried about two things in particular….

  1. Will it hurt? I had a second degree tear which resulted in stitches, apparently its all healed, but surely its going to be painful now?
  2. Will it feel awful? I once read an analogy of it being like ‘throwing a sausage down a well’. At the time I thought that was hilarious, now it just perturbs me.

The only way to find out is to bite the bullet and do it, but the thought of it makes me tense up with fear. I know if either of my two concerns are realised, I am going to be heartbroken…particularly number 2. The idea of a ruined sex life is one that horrifies me. It opens up a whole world of worry about what could happen to us as a result.

Maybe I am being dramatic about all of this, maybe I have nothing to fear, but finding out that my worries are real is the scariest thing of all. Plus, how do I get in the mood? Despite hubby’s assurances that he still thinks I’m hot, I don’t see it, and feel nothing but self conscious. What if he’s really looking at me thinking ‘bollocks, thats who I have to sleep with forever’? It may sound mental, but I do think those things, how could I not? I am different after all. I felt like I had achieved something the other day simply by putting a watch on….hardly dressing up is it? Plus, he’s seen the damage, he looked as I was being sewn up, and whats that saying about a mans favourite pub burning down? Never the same again right? He’s off out tomorrow night, and while I sit at home in my dressing gown, he’ll be surrounded by lots of lovely young ladies who haven’t had a baby, and don’t look like death warmed up, with fully functioning vaginas….its not just the physical changes i’ve had, its my mind that feels completely fucked too….at least thats one part of me thats getting some action – even if it is rubbish

x

 

 

 

 

Money Talks


So today is pay day. my first pay day that incorporates an element of SMP. Crux of it, it was less than I thought, less than I had planned for. Result = anxiety.

For me, my relationship with money has been very difficult. When I was born my Mum knew she wanted to be there to raise me as much as possible, she therefore didn’t work until I was 3. Now, despite the fact that she was looking after me and running the house, she was seen as less of a person because she didn’t financially contribute.

I’m going no further down that path, but needless to say, I noticed certain behaviours and actions, and from a very young age took on the belief that relying on anyone else for money was a bad thing to do. As far back as I can actually remember, I have thought that it isn’t right to have someone look after you when it comes to finances. This belief was reinforced at various points because of ‘other’ incidents. This has been a huge issue for me and one that I have been coached on successfully.

You might be thinking “can’t have been that successful if you’re harping on about it now”. Its really not that simple though. Believe me, I have made huge strides in this area. Lack of earning power was the only mind block I had when it came to starting a family, because I couldn’t face up to not having a regular wage each month, and we are now a month away from our baby being born.

Sorry, I’m going to sing the husbands praises again at this point, but its my blog, so my rules. Chris is my teammate, always has been, always will be. I know that he would look after me forever if thats he route we decided to go down, I know that if the roles were reversed and he needed looking after, I would do it gladly and without question. However, the reality of losing my London wage is still unsettling.

I can pin it down to one thing……I don’t want to be a burden to him. I don’t want to be a reason he is stressed about having to find more money to support the three of us. He works so hard already, and I can’t/wont put that on him. I’ve made a concerted effort to save as much as possible, in doing that I know that I can be off for a year and still make the same financial contribution to the household expenses, plus have money for myself. This in itself is something I am both hugely proud of, and also pretty sad.

I genuinely take my hat off to women that are comfortable in this situation, that must be a totally liberating feeling. I just cant get there. Even though I fully appreciate that staying at home and raising a family is a huge job, and certainly isn’t a case of putting your feet up while your other half busts his balls every day. Plus I’m not actually there yet, so I have no idea how hard/demanding its going to be. However, the idea of having to go to him and ASK FOR MONEY makes me feel physically sick. The mere notion of it actually upsets me, I just fly straight back to my early years and I can see all that shit unfolding all over again. Clearly there is still work to do around this, and I am committed to doing it.

The amount of time I spend with my head in my trusty spreadsheet is fucking ridiculous. Rows and columns full of formulas, that have ‘kept me safe’ until now. I have always had a year planned out, every penny is accounted for. How much can I save? How much can I spend on ‘fun stuff’, how much needs to go to the house, and where does that leave me? Somehow Excel has provided me with the illusion of a safety net. But thats all it is, an illusion. This is a situation that I can’t control, and in reality, I never could.

All I can do going forward is wait until the middle of each month and see how much plonks itself into my bank account, my vision to predict my financial future has gone. Its scary, very scary. However, the more I think about it, the more i find it quite freeing. I don’t want to live my life like this anymore. I don’t want our child to pick up on this odd behaviour, I don’t want this little niggle in my head to hold me back in any way.  Its toxic and it has to go.

So whats the answer? Looks like its time to have some faith. Time to believe that I’ll be okay without a salary, time to really let go and trust that I have nothing to fear. I have to believe that the dots will connect going forward, there is no other way. Ready, set, go……….

x

 

 

An Open Letter to my husband

Well, where do I start? I start with you of course, it’s occurred to me in recent months that everything good in my life started with you.


That first day we met, when I saw you leaning against that wall and suddenly thought “I wish my face wasn’t full of two day hangover” was to be a day that changed everything forever. You told me all about your power tools, with pictures too. I think you did most of the talking. You flirted in a slightly unsure way which I thought was adorable. When we parted ways, I knew something was different, and by our second date I knew you were it.

Fast forward almost 5 years and the landscape of our lives has changed dramatically. It has been a total whirlwind, living together after 7 months, engaged after 18, and married at 2.5 years. Now with our own roof over our heads and Baby M due in 19 weeks, I see just how far we’ve come.

Which is why I wanted to write this to you, to acknowledge the journey we’ve been on and to say goodbye to it.

You’re my best friend, the person who can brighten my day, my safe haven, my accountability, and as always, my teammate. You just let me be me, be silly, be weak, be afraid and be strong. Without you nothing would make sense. I’ve said this to you before, but the words I want to use to describe you, to describe us, just don’t exist. It’s not quantifiable by anything in the dictionary. I feel it, all the time, but I’ll never be able to say it.


Life has been so much brighter, fuller and richer with you in it. You were my beginning, and you’ve been my inspiration all this time. Nothing I’m doing at the moment would be possible without you next to me. You are needed now more than ever. You’ve made me better in more ways than I can say. I’m so proud of you too, how hard you work, how much you give, and how much you love. I see you without barriers, in a way that nobody else does and its a privilege.

We have so many awesome memories over the past 5 years, and to me a lot of them involve not actually doing much at all, but just being with you. Feeling excited to get home to you at the end of the day, dancing in EPIC fashion in the kitchen to our own made up songs. Laughing until we cry about the ‘Q’ in penguin, and Sam Worthingtons preparation for Avatar. Let’s not forget the good old United States of Amercia while we’re here. Spending our first holiday together talking in Aussie accents the entire time. Having our 1 year wedding anniversary dinner in our PJ’s surrounded by boxes in our new home and not wanting to be anywhere else.


And now we are having a baby, you and I are going to be parents. A life changing, terrifying and wonderful thing. I’m so happy to write that it makes me weep. To know that a person made of us is going to be here in a few months is beyond exciting. A combination of your brains and looks, and my humour, oh and let’s be honest here, hopefully my nose!  A person who will no doubt be full of emotion, of heart and of fight. All the things that make us who we are will course through them…it’s going to be an exciting and exhausting ride.

There is nobody in this world who will be a better Dad, nobody who will love and support and teach like you will. They will always be safe and be cherished by you, which, as you are well aware of, is so important to me. I hope you know all that. Our child will be so lucky to have you to guide them as their Papa Bear. I really believe you were made for this, and you’ll do brilliantly. We’ll muddle through together as we always do.

It’s a bittersweet thing though, so much excitement and hope for the future of our family. But also, so much sadness for what’s ending. To know that it’s never going to be just us two again kind of makes me ache, because I have loved it to my bones and it’s gone so fast, too fast. To know it’ll never just be you and I sat on that sofa again, to wonder how long it’ll be before it’s your hand I can hold again, how long before I get to be wrapped up in your arms, rather than being the one who provides the wrapping. Even the simple act of looking at you, one of my favourite things, will have to take a back seat.

We have 19(ish) weeks left as a double act, one last Christmas of us, one last birthday for you before a small person starts sending you cards with “Happy Birthday Daddy” on them. So many lasts, before all the firsts.

I hope that when the time comes for Baby  M to make an appearance, I take a moment to really see you, to hug you tight and breathe you in for that final time before two becomes three.


I shall miss you so very much, but I know we’ll never lose us, we’ll steal the moments we need to as and when we can to be you and I again for a minute or two.

While one spectacular chapter of our lives ends, another begins. One that we can write together. A swathe of blank pages stretch out in front of us, and although our story will probably have a few scribbles and spelling errors in it, it will read beautifully because its ours.

I could continue but I fear you may be drowning in tears, although even if you are puffy eyed and snotty, I’m sure your hair still looks fabulous.

With all my love always, and with gratitude bubbles forever

Your Raz xxxx

PS – Thank you for always keeping me Warm x

Halfway There

I’m now officially half way through my pregnancy, and I can’t believe how quickly it’s gone.

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In the last couple of weeks my bump has really popped out, according to my husband there’s more junk in my trunk and my nipples are huge. Too much? If it is I’m sorry, the line between what’s appropriate and what’s not has become very blurred. My memory is officially shot to shit.

Now, I’m not a pregnancy blogger, and don’t intend to fill this space with baby related posts. However, it is the most prominent thing happening to me, well to us right now, so it seems a good time for a round up.

There are loads of pregnancy blogs out there, some filled with tales of poor women who haven’t lifted their heads out of the toilet for 3 months at least, those ladies who are pregnant whilst having another baby or toddler to contend with. Then, there’s the Mum like me. The Mum who is seemingly breezing through all of this.

I’ve had no nausea, no sickness, not even a hint of indigestion. I don’t say that to brag, I say it to bolster. To anyone reading this who’s not yet created a bun to bake, it’s not all bad. So far my hands and feet have remained “normal” in size, and don’t yet resemble the Michelin man…although there’s a long way to go.

I had this idea in my head that I would immediately throw the planet into a global drought when I fell because I would be retaining ALL the water, but no. All is calm and serene, and the utility companies haven’t rocked up at my door demanding I return their reservoirs to normal levels.

My boobs are bigger *mini celebration time* and as of right now I still only have one chin too, although the face is definitely a wee bit rounder.

What would my husband say the first half has been like? Well I think he’d say he’s been pretty lucky. Absolutely shitting terrified, but lucky. Yes I’ve had a few days where my emotions have put me to shame, and he’s wondered what the fuck is going on, but I think that’s just because I’m a bit more tired than usual.

I’ve realised that being pregnant seems to give other people licence to give their opinions on everything. This will range from guessing baby gender based on the shape of my bump, or the fact I sway more towards savoury food, to telling me/us we definitely shouldn’t give the baby a dummy. Then there’s just those that love telling you that life will be shit once the baby is here. All exceptionally unhelpful. Especially that last one…

The tiredness is the worst part, and I only realised the other day how much I’m doing. I feel like super mum already. A horribly long and unreliable commute, with a day that starts pre 6am, a full time job which is full of potholes, study towards a qualification that I’m thrilled to be going for, but does take up a lot of time. I’m doing as much as I can, whilst also trying to be a good wife/friend/daughter….it’s a pretty draining period of my life.

This is not helped by my ridiculous pregnancy pillow,designed to help me sleep a little easier, it’s shaped like a ginormous kidney and is like having another person in the bed, so I’m finding sleep harder than before. Perhaps that’s the point, get used to not sleeping now right? I have enough people telling me that already, I don’t need my pillow to start getting in on the act too.

This Wednesday is our anomaly scan. I’m being brave and saying it out loud. So many people refer to it as the “gender” scan, when in reality it’s a lot more important/serious than finding out if we have a Norma or a Norman on our hands.

Which brings me onto the worst thing about pregnancy. The worry….it is relentless, and it’s hard work keeping it at bay. We have both been worrying and that anxiety is spilling over into other areas of our lives. Of course it’s natural, and pointless, but at this stage it’s constant. It’s almost debilitating. We’re both excited to see Baby M again for sure, but also both desperate to hear the words “everything looks great”. My mind can go no further with that right now. There is no point after scan that I can picture until we hear the verdict.

A few weeks ago I went for a consultant appointment and heard the heartbeat for the first time. There are no words for that, but it was the most beautiful sound ever. I’ve been aware of Norm moving around properly for the last few days. It’s a surreal but wonderful feeling, occasionally accompanied by mild panic…honestly, knowing that a wee person is kicking about inside of you is about as weird as it gets.

Lots of women are nesting by this point, but not this mamma. No, I’m more focused on sitting on my arse and eating. I’ve no interest in sorting out a nursery, I’ve bought no baby clothes (hoping for donations thanks). I’m not even thinking about breast or bottle. I am overjoyed to be pregnant, and to be here right now on the train feeling little kicks and flutters. I’m just not that fussed about all the stuff.

Honestly right now I’m just trying to enjoy the time I have left with just me and my husband, I hadn’t realised how much I was going to miss that until my bump appeared.

I’m of the opinion that there is no right or wrong way to get through a pregnancy, because as much as its something to marvel at and enjoy, it definitely is something to get through.  Find your own way, love it cherish it, laugh at it, and know that it’ll all be worth it.

x

 

Put Yourself First

Without fail every year at Christmas I’ll say “right, next years going to be different, no more booking loads of stuff in the diary, let’s keep things simple”. Every year without fail I, well I fail.

You see I love the idea of free weekends and evenings relaxing, but it doesn’t happen anywhere near often enough. It’s so easy to say “oh, in March, yeah we’re free” or “July you say, sure why not” when its only Jan 2nd. At the time when these invites arrive, be they from friends or family, I get caught up in the moment and say “yes” immediately, and then like clockwork, my feelings start to change as the event draws closer. A lot of the time I start to wish, dare I say it, almost pray that those plans will get cancelled or postponed by another party. It’s not that I don’t like seeing the people I care about, it’s just over the past few months, I’ve started to care about myself more. I want to put myself first.

Sometimes I’m guilted into things, mainly by family. That’s not a dig, I want to see them as much as they want to see me, but honestly, I just don’t have the energy sometimes. I think it’s madness that we live in a world of pleasing others before we please ourselves. As my coach always says “what are you going to do with your one wild and precious life?”. Surely, the answer shouldn’t be “oh I’ll make sure everyone else is happy first, then at some point, when I’ve got time, I’ll think about me”. Wouldn’t we all just be happier and more content if we just said “no” once in a while.

I’m currently at a point in my life where huge changes are taking place and I’m trying to keep up. I’ve been thinking recently about who and what are my top priorities, and the other stuff, well I’m just not going to give a shit about it for a while. That may sound harsh, so I’ll explain further.

My days are looooong! I work in London and have a commute time of 15 hours a week  if the trains are on time, and that’s a fucking big ‘If’. I’ve just started a course which is hugely important to me, but will take up a lot of my time. I’m almost 17 weeks pregnant and am focused on staying well and not getting run down, plus (and I know he gets mentioned in nearly every post) I want to spend time with my husband, especially as we are counting down the last few remaining months of “just us”.

So no, I don’t want to travel a couple of hours on a weekend to go and see people, and sleep on a shitty air bed for a night or two, no matter how much I love them. I also don’t want them to come and stay with us particularly because hosting is a massively stressful thing for me too.

Christmas is a prime example

Relative “are you coming to stay, we must get together”

Me “oh of course, we can’t wait”

When actually what I want to say is “why must we?” or “thanks for the invite but not this year”. People don’t like that though do they? But maybe, just maybe if they were really honest with themselves then they’d realise they don’t really want to do that either.

My lovely Aunt & Uncle have always done Boxing Day, it’s a tradition for years, but for years she has also said “I reckon we might go away next Christmas”. They’ve never done it, I wish they’d just please themselves and sod everyone else.

I don’t want to say yes to every invite I get, even though I hate to miss out. Because truth be told, my mind is starting to suffer, it’s too busy in there and there’s too much going on. Plus I’m actually starting to realise that I do better on my own, its when I recharge, and when I can focus.

What I want, is quiet. What I want, is space and stillness. More importantly I need those things too. I want to wake up on an empty Saturday and do as I bloody well please. I want to decide last minute to wrap up warm and head out for a long walk, to breathe in some proper fresh air away from noise and people. I want to be able to do all that, without fear of being guilt tripped or given the Spanish Inquisition.

What am I going to do with MY one wild and precious life? Whatever the hell I want.

Just The Way I’m Feeling

So, today I am 15+4 wks pregnant, and I have to say, I have felt mighty smug up until recently. I’ve had no morning sickness, no nausea or indigestion, I haven’t craved anything I don’t already like, and I am loving the novelty of having huge boobs.

But lately I have noticed a bit of a shift in my moods, I think the pregnancy hormones have found me, and decided that I am a great venue for a huge chaotic call the police kind of party. I don’t know what the fuck is going on up there, but its proving a bumpy ride.

First incident happened a little while ago now, I was out for a walk at lunchtime, I work in London so it’s always super busy. I know this, and I am regularly cut across by someone transfixed by their phone, or nearly tripped over by tourists. On this particular day I was hot, and already felt a little ‘prickly’. So I’m going about my business, when I am shoulder barged from behind by a city boy, mid 20’s, expensive suit, perfect hair. He gave me a very half hearted “sorry” as he glanced ever so slightly back over his shoulder. “You’re not sorry, you’re a C” was my unrehearsed and mortifying reply. Now I’m not going to finish the word, but it’s not pretty. He looked back at me very sheepishly and scuttled off, while I walked along slightly dumbfounded at what had just popped out of my mouth. I have very little in the way of a filter anyway, and pregnancy has ensured whatever was remaining has well and truly been stripped away.

Moving on to incident two on the roll call of shame. It was a week or so ago. It had been a warm evening and we’d had the back door open, when I went to shut it I noticed something on the step of the door, in the darkness I assumed it was a leaf. However I rapidly realised my error when I shut the door and heard a crunch. It was a snail, now if you’ve read my ‘about’ page, you’ll know I’m quite fond of snails, I actively try to avoid stepping on them when out walking, I rescue and relocate them if there is any gardening going on, dare I say it I even think they’re a bit cute. So on hearing that crunch I panicked. Full of guilt I wandered into the front room with tear-filled eyes.

Husband “Oh my god what’s happened”

Me (all choked up)“I crushed a snail in the back door”

Husband “Seriously? I thought something was wrong with the baby; get some perspective for fuck sake”

Me (now on verge of meltdown) “but you know how much I love snails”

There was no sympathy there, none, and quite rightly so, it was a monumental overreaction.

Next up, an incident last Wednesday evening, hubby and I were chatting about this and that, and he mentioned that when he’d been to get petrol he had been properly “checked out” by a woman, apparently it was very obvious; there was no subtlety there at all. I am aware that my husband is very much your typical “Fittie” and that whenever this has happened before I’ve high-fived myself for being the girl he married – go me! Not so on this occasion. After he told me I went off to my ‘Mummy Fitness’ class and I knew it was playing on my mind, I just didn’t feel right. On the way home I felt like something was building, and I knew it was to do with the tramp at the garage…..see what I mean?

So I get in and start pretty much straight away, I wasn’t angry with him at all, but felt unbelievably vulnerable, now that I am bun baking, I have never needed him more in my life, and here’s some bloody harlot who doesn’t know I exist, doesn’t know he is married, having a good old perv at him and I felt so threatened.

None of that is normal behaviour, far, far from it. Those are the main ones so far, I’ve also shouted at a man who turned into a road as I was crossing it, told someone to “hurry up and sit down on the train” and cried at a whole host of adverts, programmes and films including, but not limited to……

Dogs Trust

Lloyds TSB (the one with the horses)

Anything with babies in it

Great British Bake Off (poor Val)

Dog Rescuers

24 Hours in A&E

Dear John

Tangled

Bridget Jones Baby – actually I might let myself have that one.

 

Now I have no idea how long this ‘phase’ will continue, or what will happen next. I also know that there’s nothing I can do about it. I am at the mercy of the little person growing in my tummy who is currently behind the wheel or my heart, mind and of course body. So for any ladies reading this that are pregnant and feeling some of this too, don’t sweat it, take comfort in the fact that there are millions of other pregnant gals out there feeling exactly the same way, ready to lose their rag or blub at the slightest thing. To all the husbands, boyfriends, and significant others, stick with it, speaking for myself I admit that I don’t really know my arse from my elbow at the moment, and I’m guessing that your OH’s are dealing with that too. Hopefully we’ll all be released from this temporary madness in the very near future, in the meantime – we thank you for your patience.