Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: End of Nov- Dec - Dedication & Medication

29th November: Dedication to My Team & Kyd...
After sleeping a little more I woke up to a silent house again. Kyd had happily gone to school with Hoff and he was now working downstairs. Only thing keeping me going was the thought that is was just  a few more hours and I’d know the blood hormone test results so I’d be a little more relaxed.... or so I thought.
Kyd was so lucky to be picked to be Mascot at the Reading FC vs Peterborough by the FreeKicks Foundation.... We had to be there for 6pm tonight... The same time as we had to phone for the results, brilliant timing. I was technically still really ill and so shouldn’t have been at football at all but I couldn’t have missed Kyd being Mascot, he was so excited. I dosed myself up on Codeine and wrapped myself in hundreds of layers and we were both so thrilled to see him live every young fans dream and be on the pitch kicking the ball with the players. I however tried at every available moment to ring for my results and just couldn’t get through so I’d have to wait another 24hrs for the results which was killing me. Maybe if I’d have more time I’d have got through but oh well... what’s another 24hrs after all this time ay?? I really struggled during and after the game. So, as it was, I paid for being out and about by feeling terrible afterwards.... but it was worth it for seeing my baby smile so much on a moment he will remember forever!
(To read more about Kyd's time as mascot click here)
30th November : A Bit Less Pain, A Lot More Panic and Pills – The Results #1
I have struggled all day. I am so weak and I can hardly eat because I feel so sick. I have the remains of the worst and longest migraine I’ve ever had and to top it off I think it was the Codeine causing it. Problem with that is that I can’t stop taking the codeine because I’m still in pain in my stomach... catch 22. I’ve cut the codeine down as much as possible so that my head recovers.  I have been put under house arrest by Hoff as he knows I won’t take it easy if I don’t stay indoors. He’d done all the housework over the past few days so I’d have nothing to do when I got back... He’s a good little nursey! He had even arranged my friend to come round to check on me, even though she technically doesn’t know what’s going on... she thinks I have a terrible infection on my cervix... which technically isn’t a lie as I am on antibiotics for exactly that reason... turns out the infection was there :worriedface: Kyd’s school was on strike today so he was home all day. He is such a good little nurse too though. He tidied away after himself after breakfast, lunch and tea. He entertained himself in the play room most of the day and then he gave me a cuddle for hours after bringing down Disney’s Alice in Wonderland (my fave) for us to watch on the sofa with the blanket... just like we do when he’s ill... he’s a love isn’t he?!
6pm came and I finally made that, long awaited, call.......
My hormones HAVE doubled!!! So it is looking good for baby... only I can’t get too excited as I have to wait until the 12th December before I can have the next scan as it could still be an empty sack and a miss miscarriage... but they’ve said it is unlikely... Only thing I’ve got to do now is stop this stupid pain, finish my antibiotics and get healthy again!
I still can’t stop thinking of the worst outcome and I’m no good at this waiting game. Another 12 days until the scan and then another nearly 3 months for the BIG tests... the serious ones... all I’ve got to do between now and then is keep this little splodge inside me healthy and safe.... and all our fingers will stay firmly crossed!...

December 2011: Will I Ever Feel Any Better?
OMG my boobs don’t half hurt! (Said in my naturally strong Yorkshire accent) and I’m not sure whether this is morning sickness or a result of my illness...
I’m still getting over the stint in hospital and it feels like I haven’t left the house for ages... as in weeks!... but that’ll be because I haven’t!... I have finished all my tablets now and my migraines have eased, which tells me that it was in fact the meds causing them... annoying. The pain in my stomach has gone now and the ovary that had haemorrhaged has obviously stopped being awkward! I am exhausted though. I’m just so bored of feeling sick, being sick and being so bloody tired all the time. All I’ve done since coming out of hospital is sleep and sleep and be sick and sleep. I can’t stomach any food and I’ve lost weight... which in most cases would be amazing and I’d be celebrating, but the sensible me knows it’s not healthy when you’re pregnant to be eating so little and not keeping anything down. I’m behind on all my Blog posts because I can’t look at the screen for too long or the migraine comes back! I have hundreds of unread emails and lot’s of paperwork to do. So I have a lot to keep me busy now my brain isn’t trying to explode with migraines it’s going to have to explode with work... joy!
I have been trying to be quite positive but In the back of my mind all I can think about is, ‘Is there actually going to be a baby in there?  If there isn’t how will I cope? If there is I will have to cope with a hideous wait for more tests before I can get excited... then we have to make some hard decisions depending on the outcome.’ I have tried so hard not to think about it but if you’re at home by yourself most of the time it’s hard to shut your brain up... as my brain talks as much, and as fast, as I do! I have tried to find other things to concentrate on such as, Christmas and Kyd... no use though as once I’ve moved more than one brain cell trying to change the subject my body says that’s it and I fall asleep! Seems the only thing my brain is willing to think about for more than 2 seconds is the fact that I may not even have a baby in belly to be worrying about.... stupid really. I’m not going to lie it’s a gruelling process being ill and completely in the dark about what’s going on with your body, baby and life... and because hardly anybody knows I can’t talk to people openly about it... It completely sucks.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 28th Nov - Pain, Panic and Pills #3

....14 hours later I wake up all dazed and confused to a full prescription on my bedside table, Kyd at school and a bacon sandwich (minus the crusts) under my nose... Hoff had been like a Pixie that morning and I hadn’t even heard a thing or slightly moved an inch in my sleep. I had the Worst headache still though and it was worse than before. I only had an hour until I was supposed to be back at the hospital and I was in no suitable condition to rush. I took my pain killers and got washed and dressed back into my PJ’s as I couldn’t be bothered to wear clothes... not even this strong codeine was shifting this bloody headache though! But I had to keep telling myself I’d know if my baby was ok soon... I had tried not to think about it but it all of a sudden dawned on me that my dream of having this baby might be over... I couldn’t cope with that and I broke down in the bathroom... The more I cried the worse the pain got in both my head and stomach. I pulled myself together and did the ‘I’m OK’ smile again.
I was put in a waiting room for hours just waiting. Still in pain with the headache turning into a migraine and the lights in the hospital were killing me. I had taken painkillers and they just weren’t even touching it much to the confusion of the nurses. I sat there in Sun Glasses, indoors; in November.... let’s just say I looked like a tit! But it was helping slightly. I waited for hours and I was beginning to think, even with the benefit of 14 hours sleep at home, maybe I should have stayed in the ward as I might have been seen quicker and I’d have at least had a bed, not an uncomfortable waiting room chair. The wait was more nerve wracking than before. I was beginning to think the worst again. I knew it wasn’t a miscarriage. But I didn’t know what it was that was wrong and the word Eptopic was just playing around and around in my head. I was only 5 weeks gone and I was so annoyed that I’d prepared myself for all the genetic tests but I’d not prepared myself for this.
All I kept thinking was Why Me? Why is it that all the dirty druggies can fall pregnant and ruin their healthy normal babies by taking drugs, yet I can’t even keep a baby for 5 weeks in my body? And if I do it’s more than likely going to be disabled!! I don’t smoke! I haven’t touched Alcohol at any point during the last 5 weeks! I take my Pregnancy vitamins and I have done everything by the book... but my body isn’t good enough! My Body Hates Me!! But why?? What the hell have I done to deserve this? I know so many women who have been through so much just to fall pregnant, some still unsuccessful. I just can’t look at the people abusing their bodies and babies whilst pregnant by smoking or drinking or even the mums walking down the street with babes in arms and a fag on the go or a can of cider in the other hand. It makes me feel sick. So many decent women with an understanding of what these things can do to their babies just can’t have them, yet they just take it for granted. It makes me so mad. I just want a happy healthy bouncing baby.... But I have to go through hell to get it... and hell is where I will be until I do.
So here I am in Hell! I get called through to have my internal scan...nearly 48hrs after I was admitted! I laid there with Hoff holding my hand as the lady asked me how the pain was now. It had dulled a little by this point even with my head still banging. I’m not sure if it was the pain killers that had dulled the pain or if it was finally lifting. It was a scary moment as she placed the scanner into my womb showing my cervix and my ovaries. My tubes were empty Hurrahhh no Eptopic!! The left ovary showed the remainder of the egg in which I fell pregnant; this had haemorrhaged and filled with blood which she thought was where the pain was coming from. There was nothing which she could do about that it wouldn’t affect the baby and it would sort itself out. What a relief. She moved over to the womb and there it was a black splodge. This black Splodge was a Sack in which the baby will grow... but the sack was empty... the sack had no stalk in which they would have thought it would by the dates given by the hormone counts... She looked worried. She explained that it could just be too early or that it could be a Miss Miscarriage... in which the baby just doesn’t appear in the sack... but we wouldn’t know without further Hormone tests and another scan 2 weeks later... Hormone tests need to be done 48hrs apart and as I’d had them done on arrival in A&E on Saturday night, I could have them done that day and I’d have the results after 6pm.... not being funny but the doctors asked for me to have those bloods taken at 2pm and I’d have had the results that day... but it was now 5pm and of course the lab was closed so I had to wait until after 6pm the next day! Waiting.... Again! If they had done it when asked they’d not only be solving the mystery quicker, saving their time but saving the heartache of both me and Hoff who was confused enough as it was. I wasn’t impressed. I was then discharged and sent home... again. I was happy to be outside and in the dark as the migraine was getting worse by the minute. When I got home I sat on my downstairs toilet floor, in the dark, feeling sicker than ever before and after an hour of not being sick, I moved upstairs to bed. I woke several times to be sick during the night. I’ve never had a migraine as bad as this before and it was beginning to worry me. I was still in pain and the more I was sick the worse my stomach pains got. It was beginning to actually feel like hell and I just couldn’t stop it.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: Nov 27th - Pain, Panic and Pills #2

Staying in Hospital is never fun but when you’re admitted at 3am and then rudely awoken by the same nurse that admitted you at 6am, as she opens all the curtains and announces breakfast ... DO I LOOK LIKE I WANT BREAKFAST!! I had to tell her to leave me to sleep and explain it was only a couple of hours ago that she was telling me that I need my rest and should try to sleep... I AM TRYING TO SLEEP, GOD DAMN IT! I made my point as she closed the curtains and I grumbled and turned over... I’m not a morning person at the best of times but that was just taking the P**s. So obviously I slept through Breakfast. I woke up and was still in pain but couldn’t have any more tablets for another few hours. Nobody came round to see if I was ok. I had been told I had to do a wee sample whilst I was half asleep but hadn’t been given anything to wee in. I had to walk up and down the ward whilst dizzy and feeling very sick to find someone to give me one. Then I sat back down... doing nothing... nobody offered me some food, I’d have taken some cold dry toast at that point. I was just glad Hoff had packed me a banana and some monster munch when he had gone to get my PJ’s. I felt a bit stupid when I rang my nurse’s bell to ask for some pain killers as the people around me were so severely ill. I was in pain but the girl opposite me was beginning to look a lot worse than she did when I had woken up. Her machines were beeping and she was struggling to breathe. The poor girl had had such a bad burst appendix that it had wrapped around her internal organs. She however at this point had run out of oxygen... RUN OUT! They hadn’t even noticed and even I had noticed her getting worse. She had told them she was getting worse several hours before that and when they finally did her OBS they had dropped so badly they were all running around panicking! She soon perked up when they pulled their fingers out and did their jobs! I am a backer of Good nurses and not tarring them all with the same brush as my mum is a nurse and several friends are too. But I was beginning to see where the bad name of NHS nurses came from. It’s such a shame that just one set of mistakes can cause such distress and it is unacceptable. I don’t mind going without food, dealing with an ever growing headache and the pain in my stomach but that poor girl was severely in pain and struggling to breathe for over an hour, yet a simple change of an oxygen tank and the removal of a drain made her come straight back to health. She soon perked up and she couldn’t believe how quickly she deteriorated and how she was ignored by the staff. Shocking!... I was still left without food and at lunch (1pm) I was handed a turkey dinner.... wuhoo... only thing is, it was a child’s sized portion with mash potato full of butter... so I, being lactose intolerant, couldn’t eat it.... JOY!... I wasn’t even offered an alternative. I had to remind the Nurse that I was supposed to have had my Antibiotics as well as my pain killers and that I was meant to have more bloods taken... I might as well have been at home.... So after getting to the point where I wanted to scream I spoke to the doctors and they allowed me to leave the hospital and go home in the promise that I’d return the next day for more tests... and to actually use the Weekday only Scan machine... I jumped at the chance. Still confused the nurse then said ‘we can’t let you take any pain killers home because we technically aren’t discharging you, but we can give you a prescription... but as it’s Sunday and 5pm so the only Pharmacy open is miles away in Mortimer’.... OK... are you serious! There was not a single 24hr pharmacy in Reading? Or even Berkshire? Seriously???... Ah well needs must! I just wanted to leave. We drove all the way out there and guess what?? THEY DIDN’T STOCK THE PAIN KILLERS I WAS PRESCIBED!!!!!! Brilliant! All that way for nothing!! What sort of Pharmacy doesn’t have Codeine!! Useless! We picked Kyd up from my uncles as he had been dropped off there by respite and we finally went home... I did the all important ‘catch up on the XFactor’ hour and then went to bed....

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 26th Nov - Pain, Panic and Pills

This particular Saturday started with a big grin and ended with, what felt like, a punch in the stomach.
I woke up to a brand new sparkly car sat in my drive and a silent house. Kyd was at his first double nighter at respite and we had been to the Venue for the wedding for a Curry and Comedy night the night before.... and I had had a great night’s sleep for a change, so Smiles all round! We decided to go for a drive in our new car and do some shopping. We had 2 different parties to go to that night neither of which I could drink at, and we were heading to a local football match to meet some friends as our beloved Reading FC were away at Ipswich and we weren’t going along. It was going to be a busy, busy day and night and to be quite honest I was feeling really rough! Tiredness, sickness all of which I just put down to the pregnancy hormones, shrugged them off and just got on with it... as you do. I watched the football and bit by bit got more and more tired. I had only a few hours until I was supposed to be glammed up and smiling happily at a bar with a vodka & coke, minus the vodka, in hand.... and I was falling asleep in the car. I was struggling and it was fully obvious to The Hoff so much so that he made the decision that he would drive to both parties and that I wouldn’t be going out for long, as I needed to rest and he wasn’t taking no for an answer. I didn’t even make an effort clothes wise which isn’t like me when it comes to parties... and *shock horror* I didn’t even put my eyelashes on. I just had no strength. I arrived at party no.1 and as we’d not eaten properly since lunch we had a few bits in the bar, and here is where the fun decided to start...

My belly started to hurt, I have IBS so this isn’t unusual, but as I normally ignore it I just got on with the conversation with the very dressed up and beautiful party folk. The landlord brought down her 5 day old baby and I oooooo’d and ahhhhh’d with the others but just couldn’t concentrate. My stomach seemed to be getting worse and the whole’ ignoring it’ thing was getting harder and I have a high pain threshold to say the least so this had to be bad. We said our goodbyes and we got in the car to go to party no.2. My stomach was so uncomfortable that I struggled to sit down in the car with the belt on. I lasted at the second party less than 45 minutes before I side stepped out of there and dragged Hoff with me. I just couldn’t cope it was like I’d been stabbed over and over and with a bigger knife each time. I had kept the ‘I’m OK’ face on for ages and the ‘Oh My F***ing God that hurts’ face was beginning to shine through. As I got in the car I just burst in to tears. Hoff had noticed that I was struggling but he hadn’t noticed just how much... what can I say my ‘I’m OK’ face is just that good! ... Within minutes of driving home I just couldn’t deal with the pain any longer and after googling ‘left side pain in the stomach whilst pregnant’ I decided A&E was the best place to go.
So at 10.30pm we arrived at A&E and it was.... uhhhh.... interesting! We actually looked normal compared to the others in there; they don’t half deal with some characters. We were seen quite quickly as they were worried it might be an Eptopic Pregnancy causing the pain... I mean this had crossed my mind in the car but I didn’t think that is was what they’d think it was. I was instantly taken to a nurse who took my blood pressure and asked me the usual questions. But here was where the never ending question of ‘Where’s the pain between 1 – 10? 1 being no pain, 5 being bad pain, 10 being excruciating pain ie. Giving birth’ at that moment my pain was like being stabbed but not quite, just about to give birth, contractions so I rated it about a 9...... Then a 10..... Then a 9.... Then they plugged my canuler in to some pain relief and it settled a bit. They took loads of blood and talked about hormone levels and if’s and but’s and what it could and couldn’t be... But the only way we could know was via an internal scan... But apparently at our local hospital the scan machines are a bit like office workers in Banks and can only be found 9 to 5, Monday to Friday.... brilliant! So if it was as serious as a further gone eptopic apparently I’d still have to just lay there and almost die until Monday at 9am and that’s if and when they could fit me in... WTF?? Surely they have mobile scan units? Surely they can’t expect patients to wait that long until they know what is wrong? What if it gets worse from Friday to Monday putting both mum and baby at risk?! I’m confused!
Anyway I was admitted into a ward at 3am after a lot of pain killers blood’s and obs, they still thought it could be a miscarriage or an eptopic but there wasn’t really much they could do. The Gynaecologist came round to check that the biopsy I had had on my cervix 2 weeks previously had closed and healed properly and that the neck of my womb was closed. Both were ok but he suggested antibiotics just in case there was an infection deeper inside. I was so pleased to hear that I hadn’t miscarried but that just left the dreaded Eptopic pregnancy and I’d have to wait until Monday to find out if that was the case... this was 3am Sunday... this is going to be a long wait. 

Friday, 27 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 17th-21st Nov - SURPRISE!!!

Ok so I have been a mess again... nothing new I hear you say... I haven’t done the forms yet let alone read the info, but I have been having a real hormonal tantrum in the past few weeks. I have been horrible to live with... worse than usual... My moods haven’t been on a swing, they’ve been on a merry-go-round!... and I am never like that so I know there is something going on... I have been crying at soaps and at stupid things and I have just had enough... then something happened I wasn’t expecting... I’ve been sleeping more than ever... for someone who can never sleep, this is alarming! But this didn’t last long...
Now my Boooooob’s are killing me!!! 2 nights in a row now they’ve kept me awake! Not thinking anything of it as I’ve had issues with painful boob’s pre period before I just let it slide out of my mind. Until I sat on my sofa this morning and I just began to cry, no idea why or what started it but I was due to leave the house to meet a friend in 10 minutes. I sat and thought about my stupidly achy boobs and it was like someone was stood next to me saying ‘do the test’. I did the maths... I wasn’t due on for weeks why would boobs hurt? So I found myself in the cupboard fetching the clear Blue stick. I stared at it and thought it’ll be a waste of money and the test as it’ll come back negative again... but again it was like I blanked out and all of a sudden I was peeing on a stick... I was alone and in a rush to leave the house but I was peeing on a stick!... what was I doing?? I put it in the sink and left it. I then went back but couldn’t pick it up... It was like there was a force field around it!... I finally plucked up the courage to pick it up and there it was... A BIG BLUE CROSS a whole year after we had decided to try and only a few days after I got the bloody egg screening forms I find out, I’m bloody pregnant... I stared at the stick crying in a mix of fear, disbelief and joy. I took a pic of the stick almost as if it was going to change the result and show me I’m dreaming.... nope not dreaming. I phoned Hoff... No answer... I phoned my Mum... No bloody answer!!!... So I left the house to go and meet the friend so I wasn’t late and I had to try and keep calm. On the way Hoff phoned me back... with a whimpery, cryey voice I said ‘I’m pregnant!!’ he was like ‘WHAT?’ ‘WOW’ ‘UHHHHH brilliant... isn’t it?’ I said ‘I don’t know is it?’ and then we decided that maybe a trip to the doctor might be a good idea. So on the way to town I nipped in and asked to see my GP... ‘Well there’s a free slot in 10 minutes if you would like to wait?’... This is new for a doctors, I thought I’d have to wait at least a few days for one so I could get my head around it just slightly... but no I sat there nervously, text my friend and said I’d be a bit late, went in and stuck this pregnancy test in his face and said ‘is this definitely positive??’ I had been the only one to actually see it so I needed reassurance that it was real... he said... ‘yep that is a definite cross’ ‘let’s get you to the nurse for a blood test to date it just to be sure’. Again they had a slot for later this afternoon Fate was defo on my side today.
I saw my friend and I was still in shock, my plan was not to tell her but as she was the first real person in my life I’d seen, I just couldn’t hold it back I needed reassurance and advice! She was brill and we bought one of those clever digital dating tests from boots, because I was just too impatient for the blood test results because I had to wait over the whole weekend and we went for lunch and waited in suspense. It said quite boldly.... PREGNANT right across the screen... then underneath the numbers 1-2, meaning I had conceived only a few weeks before... but medically I was around 3-4 weeks gone.... OMG now that was real! I sent the pic to Hoff and I think it sank in for him then too... It is defo more real when the word PREGNANT is so boldly in front of you!
All I kept thinking was... Here is where my story will begin... here is where my life and our life as a family will change forever... and where some serious decisions need to be made...
The blood test was quite simple but I didn’t half bloody bruise! I generally bruise from needles but never this bad! It was instant!
When Hoff came home from work and just looked at me and smiled. He was so excited. I had tried so hard not to get excited because of the ‘what if’s’ but seeing his face made me get all giggley inside. I was happy and excited for the first time and I almost forgot about the fact that here was where the hard decisions were yet to be made. My moment of happiness was short lived as my feet have just hit the floor and I’ve realised I need to work a few things out and I have a lot of work to do. I need to sleep.

21st November: What now?
So I’ve got my head round it, I have had my blood results back I am defo 4 weeks  preggers but now I need to ring the Genetic Councillor to take the next step.  Now how do I get my head around what she is going to say?... jees this couldn’t be any more complicated!
She, formally known as Eva, is the loveliest specialist I’ve ever had for anything. She doesn’t boggle me with facts but she doesn’t patronize me with baby talk, she has it just right. She starts with asking how I feel and ends with asking how I feel, and she makes sure I understand what’s happening every step of the way... she even draws me pictures! So when all the panic and confusion about Genetics gets too much... One phone call and it all seems to disappear. I know she’s there if I need to phone her too making this dopey blonde’s brain hurt that little bit less. When I phoned to explain what was happening she was thrilled. She talked me through the choices again and when and where I could have the tests, if I wanted the tests. It suddenly dawned on me that this was actually happening.  I was going to have to make these decisions for real. But what she did tell me was that I didn’t have to decide straight away. I have to wait until I was 11 weeks to have the CVS test, and until 14 weeks for the Amnio... plenty of time... or is it?

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: Oct - Nov '11: PGD? or No PGD?

Still no sign of that blue cross but I am now waiting patiently for my PGD forms from a hospital in London that deals with the Egg Screening. The Egg screening is done just like IVF where they farm your eggs using injections, then they take them and check them for the faulty gene and then only put the healthy eggs back in to my womb, eliminating the chances of the specific disabilities... if there are any healthy eggs that is. This can be very expensive such as it is with IVF and we are not sure we will get funding as of yet so these forms will be for us to fill in and for us and our situation to be screened ourselves as such. We will have a consultation with the team at Guys Hospital, London and we will then be told more about the treatment and the funding ... Fingers crossed we get funding if it’s available, as we will never be able to fund it otherwise.
I’m really scared by this whole system so I don’t really want to look too far in to it until I see the specialist team, as I will get in a muddle with all the facts and figures. So I will be sat at that desk with my DoDo notepad and pen and I will sit, listen and note down all the info I need to look at again when I get home. I hope I’m not going to cry again... I don’t think I have any tears left so it’ll just be noise.... and let’s face it that will just be embarrassing...

November 2011: The Forms
Ok so the forms are here!! They’ve come with all sorts of diagrams and info and they are hard to look at but I am going to set them aside and work up to filling them out next week...

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: August - Sept '11: The Waiting Game

August 2011: Standing Tall... but for how long!
I’m feeling a little better now and after a few weeks of tears and stress, I have come to terms with my genetics once again and I am feeling a little stronger about my situation and decisions. We have decided to look further into the Egg Screening system called PGD, there is no harm in looking into it after all. Although we are still going to try naturally in the mean time and cover all bases. I have decided to deal with the situation when it comes instead of stressing about what I might do if and when it does finally happen. I am known for changing my mind about things so I am planning on just going with the flow.... this is easier said than done obviously but I am going to try and stay positive. People are all different and some may condemn me for future decisions I may make, but this happens all the time and I am sticking to my guns by going by my own situation and thoughts, even if I change my mind a few times and although I’ll be taking their views into consideration I will not be bullied into a decision that will affect not only my future but the whole of my families future too. It is my body, my family, my baby, I will decide.

September 2011: The Waiting Game
So I’m still not pregnant and I’m waiting not so patiently for my body to cooperate with me... it doesn’t seem to want to. Each month I really pray I have that silly blue Cross and not that devastating line... I seem to be going through these tests like Kyd eating sweets and each time I have a little cry and then get on with it. I don’t think I could even explain that sinking feeling you get waiting for the cross to appear. That feeling of desperation for it to be a cross and not a line is sickening. I feel stupid each time like I should’ve known it was a NO as my body hates me and it doesn’t do cooperation... It’s not what I want that counts it’s what it wants and it’s up to Mother Nature to kick my bodies butt and get on with what it’s supposed to do. I feel for all those who know this moment will never happen and each month I remember that and it brings me back to earth. If I felt so bad now... how must they feel on a regular basis? My heart goes out to the woman who can’t conceive and I’m sorry if my whinging on has been upsetting to you... I don’t really know what to say on that subject and I don’t pretend to understand how it feels either... I just wanted to add that.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 15th July '11: Genetic Counselling - The Appointment

After about 4 hours sleep I woke up to find Hoff had taken Kyd to school and I had slept through all 4 of my alarms... Oh dear... it was ok though because I had plenty of time to work out a way of pretending to be confident about the upcoming appointment... But deep down, just like last night, I had this ever growing fear of what was to come... I daren’t think positive as I thought I’d just be disappointed... and I was right too... After a long silent walk to the hospital, both of us panicking inside too much to voice it, as I just knew the tears would flow for me and Hoff was worried that the tears would flow for me if he spoke about it...
We sat in Outpatients 1, after staring blankly in to the pond outside for 10 mins as we were early, and the time whilst we were sat there just seemed to take forever to pass!!!! Each minute felt like an hour... We quite boringly went through the Wills and Kate wedding edition of Hello magazine, which I had read already, and we commented on some of the most ridiculous things we had ever spoken about... Then my name was called... with a gulp and a deep breath I took Hoff’s hand and went in to the room...
After the introductions with the specialist and the brief update of our family trees... She started with the genetics lesson... Kyd has Robertsonian Translocation DS ...
Definition: A special type of chromosome abnormality caused by two individual chromosomes joining together to form a new fused chromosome called a translocation. Only certain specific chromosomes can form Robertsonian translocations -- chromosomes 13, 14, 15, 21, and 22. If a number 21 chromosome is involved in forming a translocation, this can cause Down syndrome.  
In my case the faulty gene was part of 15 and 21 which had morphed into each other to create a translocation... she’d drawn me a picture...  Which was a good thing, as the whole thing was worrying my tiny little brain so much that I couldn’t think!
The 15/21 gene issue was quite a complicated one to get my head around; I don’t think I’ll ever fully understand it. I thought I just had a gene that caused Down Syndrome... but no... I had other things to think about. When she said the word ‘Miscarriage’ I just panicked in my head all I thought was ‘omg I can’t even carry a baby let alone have one’ I did start to panic, I started to realise this was more serious than I first thought and that it was going to be harder than I realised to even fall pregnant and keep hold of it. 
What she said after that was something that broke me slightly more inside than ever before. ‘You are at risk of a few other disabilities, Prada Willie and Angelmans Syndrome...’ this ended in a long pause. I had no idea what they were. So I asked. I wish I hadn’t because the info was too hard to take in and I could feel myself welling up. I looked at Hoff’s face as he squeezed my hand tightly and he looked horrified. He was just a normal guy, with a normal family, looking for a normal future... then he met me and now he had no chance of a ‘normal’ future let alone a ‘normal’ baby, he was so desperate to be a daddy too, I just wanted to scream. I pulled myself together and listened to what she had to say and then asked what I can do to prevent this or fix it or just try and be successful in pregnancy....
She said there were tests I could have during pregnancy and treatments I could have that could screen my eggs for the healthy eggs... the whole thing was so confusing. She gave me some leaflets to take away as she didn’t want to overwhelm me with facts & figures. She also gave me her phone number so I could call her once I had taken all the news in... I don’t think I’ll ever take that news in. I don’t think I’m ready to take it in. I don’t think that Hoff really understood what was being said either.
As we left the room Hoff said ‘are you OK?’ I just nodded as that was all I could do at the time. We began the walk home and when Hoff asked again ‘are you OK?’ I just broke down, in the middle of the street. I couldn’t speak I just cried and cried. I knew I needed to get it out but once I started I couldn’t stop. When we arrived home I just sat. I just couldn’t speak. I just waited for Kyd to come home from school for the biggest cuddle whether he liked it or not. Hoff was also quite quiet. He was just leaving me to get my head round it but I think at the same time he was trying to get it in to his head too. He hasn’t really said much about it to me but I think it’s because he doesn’t want to upset me. I think that deep down he’s as hurt as me. He wants a baby, I don’t think he cares if it’s a girl or a boy but I know that he cares that it’s healthy and that we aren’t going to struggle with a diagnosis after birth. I know he wants the tests doing just as much as I do. I know this because he has not spoken about not doing them but only about what we can do. Generally he doesn’t talk about these things as he thinks they’ll  upset me so my way of knowing what he’s thinking even when he’s not expressing it, is to listen to what he’s not saying, rather than what he is... I just hope he isn’t too disappointed with my genes... or me... and I hope he doesn’t run away.

*Prader-Willi syndrome
Prader-Willi syndrome is a congenital (present from birth) disease that involves obesity, decreased muscle tone, decreased mental capacity, and sex glands that produce little or no hormones... Symptoms may include:
·         Almond-shaped eyes
·         Delayed motor development
·         Floppy newborn infant
·         Insatiable appetite, food craving
·         Irregular areas of skin that look like bands, stripes, or lines
·         Narrow bifrontal skull
·         Rapid weight gain
·         Skeletal (limb) abnormalities
·         Slow mental development
·         Small for gestational age
·         Undescended testicles in the male infant
·         Very small hands and feet in comparison to body
Affected children have an intense craving for food and will do almost anything to get it. This results in uncontrollable weight gain and morbid obesity. Morbid obesity may lead to lung failure with low blood oxygen levels, right-sided heart failure, and death.

*Angelman Syndrome

What is Angelman Syndrome?

Angelman syndrome is a genetic disorder that causes developmental delay and neurological problems. The physician Harry Angelman first delineated the syndrome in 1965, when he described several children in his practice as having "flat heads, jerky movements, protruding tongues, and bouts of laughter." Infants with Angelman syndrome appear normal at birth, but often have feeding problems in the first months of life and exhibit noticeable developmental delays by 6 to 12 months. Seizures often begin between 2 and 3 years of age. Speech impairment is pronounced, with little to no use of words. Individuals with this syndrome often display hyperactivity, small head size, sleep disorders, and movement and balance disorders that can cause severe functional deficits. Angelman syndrome results from absence of a functional copy of the UBE3A gene inherited from the mother.

What is the prognosis?

Most individuals with Angelman syndrome will have severe developmental delays, speech limitations, and motor difficulties. However, individuals with Angelman syndrome can have normal life spans and generally do not show developmental regression as they age. Early diagnosis and tailored interventions and therapies help improve quality of life.

Hope that helps... yeah I still don't really get it either!

Monday, 23 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: May-July 2011: Do we do Genetic Counselling?

So after months of trying for a baby in quite a non stressful, casual manner and with no success as of yet... I knew it might take time, I have read so many reasons why this could be and so I wasn’t worried too much... But as I thought I may have a bit of time, I decided to seek advice from the GP about Genetic Counselling. I have been told this week by other mums at the West Berkshire Down Syndrome Group (WBDSG) that GC was a real help even for those whose DS children weren’t diagnosed with Robertsonian Translocation, which is the genetic form of DS. I asked the GP how I could get this and he informed me that they had a clinic in Oxford and that it might take a long time for the appointment to come through and I should strongly think about not perusing with trying for a baby until after I had talked it through with the GC... I didn’t want to hear this as I wanted a baby asap!! But I just thought that I would play at being patient for once and wait for the appointment to come through. I just couldn’t understand why it was such a long bloody wait!! He was no use at even slightly giving me a time period either as he just said ‘it’s a busy practice...’ a phrase I hear a lot from these doctor types! But I just sighed and decided to stay positive. Now for the wait!!!... TBC

June 2011: Genetic counselling...
OMG... no I’m not preggers... but we have had the appointment through already for the Genetic Counselling and it isn’t that long away 15 July and also it was a clinic in Reading, at the Royal Berks, so round the corner from our house... brilliantly timed and placed. I am so nervous. I have no idea what I am going to hear at this meeting. I have no idea what the last GC told me other than it was 1 in 5 chances and that it was called Translocational...which was???? I had never looked in to it out of fear of the unknown... I know, due to tests on my mum, that it was from my Dads side and I have had to contact his family, which we don’t see, and we would have to be careful in the future... That is all... I am panicking a little... if you couldn’t tell... what I am going to be like on the day is a scary thought!!
In other news... (Men this may not interest you!)  I am now worrying about my periods as they don’t seem to be regular and they’re confusing me!! How am I supposed to calculate my ovulation dates with the most random patterns of menstruation... L what am I doing wrong?? Stupid body!

July 14th: Genetic Counselling - The Night Before
So again I’m not preggers... But it is the 14th and I may be freaking out so much that I can’t sleep. It is now 3am and I have grown bored of the police related fly on the walls and I have decided to write my thoughts...
My Thoughts...
Shit! What are they going to tell me tomorrow??  And... am I going to understand it all? And... am I going to understand what the rest of my future holds?... Arrrrrrrrgggggghhhhhh is the key word/noise in my thoughts right now too... I was told by a new Parent Forum (Futureofdowns.com) that genetic counselling can help with not only understanding Translocation but the choices of tests and treatments I could have. I know that my mind is set in which I don’t want another DS child, which I know is controversial in some ways but I think personally when confronted with not knowing whether you can have a ‘normal’ baby you just crave it more and more... I just want to know if I can or not and I’m pretty sure I can’t... L
So is it just me being selfish? Yes... but No.... all at the same time... I think we were bloody lucky with Kyd! Actually I know I was bloody lucky with him... His health is relatively normal compared to many other DS kids and we have avoided all big health problems so far... would it be reckless to have another?? Would it affect Kyd’s future if I did have another DS child?? And most importantly would I cope with the physical and mental strain it would cause on both me and my relationship?? And how would Hoff cope?? Or Kyd for that matter??  Is it fair for me to tell Hoff we can’t have a ‘normal’ child... but on the other side is it fair that I tell him we can’t have our child because of the DS?? It is such an important decision but each to their own I reckon... Who can tell you whether you can cope with the mental and physical strain of having a disabled child other than yourself... Or whether as a couple, or family, that you could accommodate such a huge impact on family life?... Whilst some are fully ready for it and are stable enough to make that decision... others, like myself (maybe because I’ve been through it already in a bad circumstance) know that it would cause more harm than good and confronted with the choice, it would be both wrong and selfish to go ahead and make that decision. I am in ore of those who are able to make that life changing decision. I am completely for not against the people who can and do it on a daily basis but does that hit a guilt button in my head as if they can get their head round it why can’t I? Is it wrong for me to not want to go through that all over again?? And is it unnatural and going against Mother Nature to try and have just a ‘normal’ child?
Oh my head is such a mess tonight!! What the hell will tomorrow bring?

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 2010/2011 Where it all began...

We have, as a family, recently decided to try for another Baby... and after an 8 year gap and me being adamant I didn't want any more children due to Kyd’s downs and my commitment to him, i have decided to forget all that and just go for it... EEEEKKK... massive step!

Kyd  has 'Robertsonian Translocational Down Syndrome' a genetic form of the syndrome which makes no other difference to other Downs but the placing of the extra chromosome and meaning it has been passed on through either both or one parent. In this case it was passed on through my genes and we suspect stems from my father's side of the family. I have always said I didn't want any more children through well... pure fear I think. I have been so lucky with Kyd he is relatively healthy for a child with downs having no Heart or Lung problems and so I didn't want to jinx it by having another but now with all the new fangled tests and technology coming out of our ears it puts me at ease... well a little bit. I think that if I had had another child before now I would have not only struggled financially but mentally wouldn't have coped because I was so young. Not only that but I would have had less time for my beloved Kyd. I am now in a situation where I am in a loving relationship with an also quite mental (but lovely) man, Hoff, who dotes on Kyd  as much as I do and we now own a house (how very grown up), so we have a great foundation to start thinking about a lovely addition to our little family... To be fair it was that or another cat... We have 2 already (Dave & Syd) I was quite bluntly told 'No more cats!!' and have now been nick named the Crazy Cat Lady! The cheek of it!! It's quite a scary thought having a baby as it won't be easy, I have a 1 in 5 chance of having another Down syndrome baby (which as much as I love Kyd I wouldn't be able to cope with all that again) so we will have Tests, Tests, Tests!! Plus, the 'What If' worries and the usual ‘conceiving a baby’ traumas that every couple go through...... BUT I say... BRING IT ON!!

Saturday, 21 January 2012

BREAKING NEWS: We're having a baby!!!

OK so to some this isn't 'Breaking News' as they know already due to me having a big mouth and being useless at secrets, but for the rest of you.... TAAAA DAAAAAA I'm 13 weeks Pregnant!

What is BREAKING NEWS to all of you isssssss... It's a BOY!

Hoff and I are very relieved to announce this pregnancy as it's been a tough old journey to get to this point. we are a little overwhelmed as we've not been able to get excited until now because it was all a bit up in the air. We've now got 6 months to get our heads round the fact that this is actually happening and maybe work out how to make a bottle... I have no memory of Kyd at that age so this is as new to me as it is to him... scarily enough!

This here is a time line of baby Baillie-Hassall....

7wks - baked bean sized sprout... being a bean

8wks - broad bean sized sprout... being the best bean that he could be!

11wks - Sprout... sprouting limbs!

We've had 4 scans already... YES 4!! (first one there was no baby visible so we've got no pic to prove it) It's not quite been plain sailing this past few months with lot's of sickness and random issues occurring, along with all the genetic testing being done, let's just say it's been tiring. So I'm really sorry if I've been a little off, not attended an event, cancelled on you or simply disappeared without a trace recently.... but it was because I was struggling with problem after problem, test after test, sickness after sickness, looking after Kyd and keeping my mouth shut... fingers crossed the next 6 months are easier and I'm less bed ridden or hospital bound... I want to thank all that helped and especially Hoff who has been a saint over the past few months and kept me sane.

Just to let you know the tests all came back clear and my super human freak genetics played a blinder and stayed asleep... for those of you who don't understand that... I have a very rare translocation in my genes that causes all sorts of issues not just Down Syndrome but many other things too. Let's just say this baby has to be a fighter to have bypassed all the obstacles in it's way.... even to the point that he had a very high chance of not making it past the first few weeks but he did it... clever boy.... OH YEAH by the way... we know it's a BOY already as the tests we had done on his genetics have told us... nothing like a bit of planning ahead, easier to pick names now.

Kyd is very excited about his pending new Brother and he's looking forward to being the boss... I wonder how long the excitement will last when the crying doesn't go away? He also wants to call him Bruce apparently... This isn't going to happen!

So WELCOME to my body newly nicknamed 'Sprout' it's nice to be able to 'out' you to the public now as I think people were starting to think I was just getting fat. I hope you enjoy your stay... but not too much I want you out eventually... cuddles are in order!

KEEP READING: For the next few weeks I'll be getting you up to speed by posting from the Pregnancy Diary I've been keeping... some of it will be hard to read as it's been hard to deal with some of the decisions we've had to make along the way. I've been as honest as I can and some things do get quite controversial but I believe that to make decisions easier for others to make they need to read other peoples journeys... I couldn't find anyone else's and I just hope even one person finds my journey helpful. sometimes you just need to know you're not on your own and someone else has felt what you have too...

I don't expect you all to read it all by the way... I'm not that vain.

Love You All....

Friday, 6 January 2012

I think I just died of embarrassment... *don't laugh*

Just a normal morning I thought when I opened my eyes....

I woke up to Hoff scuffling around sorting himself out for work, I laid in bed thinking about sleep, got mauled by Syd the cat, put slippers on, instantly got cold, threw on some layers, pottered downstairs tripping over Dave the cat, made Kyd’s breakfast, realised he wasn’t awake, went to wake him up, tripped over the cat again, got shouted at by Kyd, got him downstairs, started eating his breakfast....

Then the ‘it’s time to go’ alarm went off... WHAT?? It can’t be that time we’ve only just got up?!

Nope it was definitely that time all the clocks were in sync with each other and we, well, we were still in our PJ’s and Kyd was covered in breakfast... What happened to the morning? Were we swept into a time lapse or warp or whatever they call it? I hadn't got up late! Were we moving like snails? I was so confused. With that I panicked started shouting ‘Quick Quick get dressed and eat at the same time!’ I piled his clothes on, splashed water on his face, threw his toothbrush round his mouth region and ran out the door...

I ran down the road and Kyd said ‘A’ice slippers’ I had my slippers on! With a panic I ran back Kyd laughing at me threw my shoes on, locked back up and ran off again.

It was only when I'd got there and to the actual classroom door that I noticed his teacher looking at me with an odd look and said ‘Alice your hats on inside out’ then I twigged... OMG the feeling and look of true horror rushed over my whole body! I suddenly realised that I hadn’t looked in the mirror at any point after throwing myself out of bed... I also looked down and realised my pockets were hanging out of my trousers, my shoelaces were undone and like she had said... my hat was not only on inside out... but also backwards... stupid thing is I instantly took it off to fix it revealing my birds nest of a hair style, causing more embarrassment... ‘It’s OK’ she said ‘hard morning?’ I just shook my head in horror and said ‘I’m mortified’ she smiled and said ‘it’s OK’ again! As I walked down the corridor I got quicker and quicker and ran out of the front door and straight home. Passing some very confuzzled looking mothers on the way past...

As I got in the door, I closed it, slumped to the floor and put my head in my hands... I crawled to the toilet, stood up with my eyes closed and took a deep breath.... As I opened my eyes I was yet again MORTIFIED... as to top it all off, I had blatant mascara smudges under my eyes... *shakes head*

It’s a good job I live amongst people, parents and teachers who, let’s just say, aren’t all that funky and who don’t think they’re too posh to associate with the crazy bag ladies such as myself. They don’t see fit to turn their nose up at me as I walked past with my hat on backwards, or turn away just in case I smell like old fags and dried urine (note* I don't actually smell like this) because there's so many of those types in the area it’s an everyday occurrence to pass folks like these/folks like me... they simply smiled, probably laughing deep down, and went about their day sniggering at my madness but not judging as they know how I feel as I know damn well ‘they’ve been there’ or ’had one of those mornings’ and luckily they all know this doesn’t happen very often... well so they think!! I wouldn't have got away with that in our old house... lol

When picking Kyd up later I will be like a completely different person... like a magical transformation in to a supermodel... I will be drenched in make-up... that was applied within the last 12 hours and I will be standing tall and trying to redo the wrongs made from this morning... *Sigh*They probably won't even notice!

I'm still not sure what actually happened to me in that short length of time but I'm pretty sure someone might have been watching over me with a 'You've been framed' camera and I'll rewatch my morning on the TV in years to come....

So, just for fun, let’s sum this disaster up...
  1. ·         Going outside in slippers *check*
  2. ·         Hat inside out AND back to front *check*
  3. ·         Pockets hanging out like an advert for a poor man *check*
  4. ·         Shoelaces undone like a teenager *check*
  5. ·         Birds nest hair under hat, then out of hat, then under hat quickly again *check*
  6. ·         Yesterdays make up smudged like a girl on the walk of shame *check*
  7. ·         Odd looks from parents *check*
  8. ·         Generally looking like a tramp or, to be more precise, a crazy bag lady... *check
Oh didn’t I do well today!... Just think Hoff you're marrying that!! I feel for you!...

...I think I'm going to go back to bed!

Thursday, 5 January 2012

My Highs and Lows of 2011

I have been tagged by the lovely JudeyWudey to write about my highs and lows of 2011 as part of Kate at Kate on Thin Ice‘s Groovy Mums. I think this is a great opportunity to reflect on my year and it has really made me appreciate the positives that have come out of the things that didn’t seem so positive at the time.

So I will answer the 12 questions set by Kate, tag some other fellow parent bloggers at the end of my post to do the same and then I will leave a comment on Kate’s original post so that she and others can read what I said. So here goes…

 What was your happiest event?
I got engaged in September to the lovely Hoff and I must admit that was my highlight of 2011 as when it comes to 'Happiest' events that defo tops them all. It was all very happy happy happy. We were somewhere we love, having a day for just us and the ring, ohhhhh the ring!!!, well it is beautiful. It was from somewhere I have always imagined my ring being from... OK OK it''s from somewhere that I insisted my engagement ring be from. I know what I like and I wanted a specific type of ring, from a specific Antique market in a specific part of London... I never actually thought it would happen you see, so I could afford to be picky... BUT it did happen and he did give me that specific ring! He's a clever boy pays attention and everything!... he's a keeper!... He got brownie points for the details... although the fact we were in a pub called 'The Worlds End' when he got down on one knee was a little bit of an over sight on his part... or was it?? hmmm

 What was the saddest thing to happen?
We lost a few friends at the end of 2010 and early on in 2011. Although not family, each person meant something to me and affected my life in some way along the road. Everyone struggles with death and I would never try to begin to understand each persons grief as everyone deals with things differently. I am grateful to have never had to deal with a close family member dying in my adult life as close friends have been hard enough to lose. The loss of so many, so young was one of the reasons I stood up and decided to live life in 2011. I believe that moments and events like this can change you forever and to remember those lost you have to learn to live with the legacy of their life's message, whatever it is and however you interpret it into your life. If you are to honour them in any way I think that this is the best way to do it... live life for them, it will keep them with you and help you on your way. RIP.

 What was the most unlikely thing to happen that actually went ahead and did?
Well I hate to be boring and repeat myself... but ME being ENGAGED?? Really?? Now that to me even a year ago was NEVER going to happen any time soon! I'd have laughed at you if you'd told me otherwise. Don't get me wrong I wanted too but I couldn't see it happening any time soon.... But to say that this teenage mum, with no education, no prospects, no clue what was to come or any  clue about life in general, was to own a house, be settled in a happy relationship, be classed as a good parent & engaged to be married... Just shows you don't know what's round the corner for anyone, you just need to have hope. 

Jesus, if I can dig myself out of my mega bucket sized gutter you can too! Never give up hope! *creepy wink face*

 Who let you down?
I tend not to depend on other people as a rule, as that gives them the power for them to be able to let me down which leads to disappointment... I learnt that a long time ago....

But do you know what/who let me down  in 2011... the government & their Disability Allowance system. I had to fight with them for over a year and had to scrape the bottom of the barrel in self respect just to get them to agree that my son was as disabled as I had originally told them and that I wasn't in fact lieing and therefore entitled to Disability Allowance. This makes me sick that everyday children and adults are fighting for the right for someone to agree they're disabled and then for a label that says 'yeah ok you aren't a fraud' and even then you come across prejudice and ignorance from not only the DWP but the general public because the press tell them we are all lieing... lovely stuff *rollseyes*. 

To all those people who have faked an illness to receive disability benefit... YOU LET US DOWN!!! SHAME ON YOU! You are who are letting this country and this system down, YOU are what is making the extra struggle and the cause of the extra pain that these people are suffering! These are people who have enough daily problems of their own and DO NOT need people like you causing this government to change systems to catch SCUM like you out... grow a conscience and get a life! *rant over* NEXT QUESTION...

 Who supported you?
Now this will come as a shock to the people involved as this is all new to all of us. Obviously The Hoff  and others supported me in 2011 and I am hugely grateful... but I tell them that all the time so they don't need to hear it.

Right sooo even this time last year I would never have said MY FAMILY would be the ones I'd be declaring as my biggest support. I have caused nothing but problems for my family from teenage until the present day... although in different ways. I have pushed them away and they have pushed me away and until recently we were just acting like 'distant family' and not a close family unit- (if they exist?), you know, like the age old stereotype of the distant Aunts and Uncles passing in at Christmas with a card, this was my family though, distant ships and the odd card, like we'd forgotten how to be 'A Family' or if we'd ever actually been one in the first place. 

My own fault really I was scared of letting them down and they were scared I'd let them down- lol joke, I mean they were scared they'd push me further off the other side instead of back on track if they had confronted me- because I'm too stubborn apparently- Me? Moi? Never?- I needed someone to come in in their shining armour and kick my butt, AND THEY needed ME to come in covered in flowers like a hippy and realising the error of my ways- neither was likely to happen and I think after many years, a lot of eye opening events, screaming & crying- We've cracked it- HURRAH! 

In the year just passed we pulled together, we talked, we nudged things into the past and we became closer than ever before without even saying a word to each other- we don't do soppy stuff. They've been there when I've had good news, bad news, scary news and incredibly confusing news and down right bonkers news. Even if they sometimes didn't understand what was going on, they had a response and it wasn't 'Oh no what have you got yourself in too now?' (not that they ever said that but I imagine it was thought once or twice).

It feels nice- almost normal- which is odd - don't tell them this, but I love it, I might even love them-

OK Puke that's as soppy as I get, enough already- NEXT QUESTION!

 Tell us one thing you learned.
I've learnt blogging is the future for my madness.... It seems to be going ok... maybe I can take this further eventually!

 Tell us one thing that made you laugh.
One thing that made me laugh... just one? Uhhhhh OK This??... Come on you've got to laugh there is just so much going on!!

Tell us one thing that made you cry.
Although technically bordering on 2012 the realisation that my Post Natal Depression and my past relationships had effected Kyd emotionally even 9 years on was devastating. I don't want to go into it because it was upsetting enough writing it the first time... read it here if you like...

 Tell us three things your child did to make you feel proud.
  1. He finally learnt to count and he now recognises his letters and some words... taken forever but I knew he'd get there! 
  2. He walked on the pitch in front of thousands with his heroes and wasn't even slightly phased... because he's a star.
  3. He played mummy when I was ill. He got me a cold wet flannel, a glass of water, a big kiss on the forehead and then began to get the washing in off the line... he even folded it... He made my heart melt that day.... how did I make that?

 Tell us one thing that made you proud of yourself.
I became ME in 2011! I pushed aside all that made me go backwards and all that certain people expected of me and I redesigned ME for ME! It took a lot to realise that half of the life I was living was a lie and not true to myself but I'm glad I did realise because 2011 was my best year yet

Sometimes you want something so much, that you try so hard to get it, you end up becoming that something that you don't like, to that one person or that group of people that you want to be... not always a bad thing but never often a good thing. The greatest friendships in life don't have to be pushed to mean something, they just flow and are weightless. Not everything you want to work out in life that you'd do anything to get, is right for you... which is why it very rarely does work out... Life is too short to worry about what others are doing, saying or thinking... What matters is what YOU ARE doing, saying and thinking... and if you can't change that... nobody can! 

Stay true to yourself... because you are the only you you'll get!

 Tell us one challenge you overcame.
Fear of the future!!... Not everything can be controlled some things are left down to nature and chance.... Life is one of those funny things that might kill you... this is life...

 Tell us three things you would like to change about your life in 2012.
I won't say new start... I don't need one after last years awesomeness. I will simply tell you 3 things that my life needs more of... 
  1. Health...
  2. Motivation to get off my butt...
  3. Ohhhhh and Wagamamas lots and lots and lots of Wagamamas.. but then that goes against my initial Health... as I fear this will result in obesity... ah sod it Wagamamas is a much better cause!
So there we go... this is my 2011!
These lovely bloggers are now going to look back at their 2011 highs and lows as well, so why not click on the links and have a read:

Actually Mummy
Romanian Mum in London
Confessions of an Angry Catholic
Pugs' First Child

Enjoy Folks

Sunday, 1 January 2012

PND: A Drastic Realisation

Tonight I realised just how much Kyd really does take in and it really made me think about a lot of things that have happened in the past.

Along with most of the female population of the country tonight, I cried at Pat dying on Eastenders and although he wasn't watching it and was getting ready for bed, as he came in and saw me crying he began to well up and became very quiet. He's always been sensitive and he hates it when others cry, old or young, but I've always put it down to his sensitive manner. Tonight I realised it's really not that.

I spent years suffering from depression, most of Kyd's life in fact, and most nights I would sit and cuddle him in floods of tears just asking God 'why me?'. I know this is a general reaction to a diagnosis according to the professionals but I really really struggled. I have also been through some rough times with ex partners and again would sit in tears and sometimes him being there amongst the shouting was out of my hands... that's another story though. I would generally only cry when he was in bed and I tried so hard to keep the ex at bay when he was around, but I often had to settle him back to bed after he woke, when I was in a state myself leaving him seeing me in a state. He must have sat there night after night listening to me cry... no wonder he wasn't settled.

I never thought about it really until now. It was life and that is how it was at the time and although I tried my hardest to keep him safe physically, I fear I have failed him mentally by subjecting him to the heights of Post Natal Depression.

He saw too much and he heard too much and as a result he himself is an emotional wreck. If he sees me cry he cries himself. I fear it takes him back to the days that it was just him and me and that he suffered through my depression with me.

Tonight as he headed off to bed and gave me a kiss he hung on so tight. He welled up as he got in to bed and when Hoff came downstairs and told me, I went upstairs to settle him. He wasn't crying but as soon as I asked if he was OK he broke down. My heart hit my throat and my eyes welled up. I fought back the tears and held him tightly. I asked what was wrong and he just said my name. I explained that I was OK and that I was just being silly and sometimes grown ups cry over the TV because they're silly. He calmed down and I asked him if he was OK again and he shook his head. This broke my heart, there was obviously something else wrong and his lack of speech was holding it back from me understanding. He looked so sad. He looked scared almost. I said to him that life was different now and went on to list some amazing things that have happened and asked him if he was happy in his new house? He said yes and I asked him what he liked... he went quiet and then babbled a list out as long as my arm. I had to explain that life sometimes makes you sad but if he was ever sad he had to tell me. We had a joke and a kiss and we ended with a smile, a love you and a wink.

The scary thing is is that I have no idea what he took from that as I have no real understanding of what he really understands because he can't tell me. He is 9 years old and he saw more in his first 6 years than most adults in their 40s have in their whole lives...

I have the most horrid feeling inside like I've let him down and I can't help but kick myself. If I could do it all over again I'd do so much differently... but I can't so I now have to try and work on repairing what damage has been caused and now I'm aware and in a position to do it, I'll fix it even if it kills me.

If you are reading this and suffering in silence yourself.... get help, It's not just you that will struggle in the long run, children take more in than you think. Do it for them if you can't do it for yourself.

2011 - ROCKED!

So what an eventful year on My Life, My Son, My Way...

  • We settled into a new house, a new routine and a new school. 
  • I made a tit out of myself... a lot!... nothing new there...
  • I started blogging, had new adventures and met new friends.
  • I finally found out what it is I like doing with my life and bid farewell to all that I didn't.
  • We had some Crazy nights out, drunk too much at festivals and watched lots of football with the people that make our lives what they are today.
  • I started donning a beautiful Sapphire ring as I became a grown up and got engaged to the Hoff, resulting in instantly starting wedding plans.... and evidently becoming Bridezilla!
  • The cat's continued to rule the roost.
  • I continued to fight with my own brain over stupid things.
  • Kyd became 9 and a became old enough to tell me off for being embarrassing... this is depressing.
  • My hair became darker and then blonder.
  • Hoff became a bigger geek with more gadgets... this is all true!
  • Kyd also became mascot for Reading FC and lived his dream.
  • Spuddy became a monster fairy who now likes to scream 'LOSER!' at me! (I blame Mummy Spud for that... Thank You!)
  • My family became closer somehow and I am not quite sure why yet but it's freaking me out!
  • I wrote a piece on here that went mental thanks to one Ricky Gervais & a simple click of the Retweet button.... and a few pieces that were published in a few footy programmes, books and papers... get me!
  • Illness, sickness & hospitals... featured quite a lot towards the end of 2011...
  • Oh and I cooked Christmas dinner for the first time in 25 years.
  • Ohhhhh Oh Oh and I also discovered that cats can sneeze... who'd have thought it?!

All in all amongst the new arrivals and sad farewells, We had good news, bad news, exciting news, scary news and pending news....
But most of all we had fun, we lived our own lives and we made our own futures brighter and I'm looking forward to a fabulous and more adventurous 2012 with some fabulous and adventurous new people to meet along the way... 2011 Rocked... Bring on 2012!!

I hope you all have a fantastic new year too, make sure you keep reading in the new year though as I have some exciting new extras to add to My Life, My Son, My Way...
stay tuned!

PS sorry for the lack of 'Merry Christmas' posts... I was busy cooking and eating crap!