Sunday, 23 August 2015

Big Up The Breastfeeding Big Uppers!

Please before continuing to read this post know this. I am not knocking any parent and their choice in way of feeding their little one. Whether you bottle feed or breast feed, I totally respect you and your choice. Now, please respect mine with allowing me to write about my breastfeeding experience without assuming that I am knocking anyone and their methods of feeding. You do what suits your child. So, please no high horses.

This post, for me is very very important.
Although, with my first Moose I was fairly happy to breastfeed anywhere and anytime, I still got a belly full of butterflies when I had to do so in certain situations. However, 2nd Moose round I can't say the same applies. Now, please don't get me wrong, I am not one for just 'flopping it out'. Please, I wish I was. But, unfortunately I can't quite allow myself. Self conscious an all! But, my confidence is now far greater. If I have to shop, push a toddler in a trolley and feed, then so be it. I feed my baby where ever and whenever. I am never 'in your face' with my feeding. I either discreetly drape a muslin square over both my breast and baby or I wear 2 tops, allowing me to remain covered as the under top is pulled down. You really can't and don't see anything. But, if you were to scrutinise me as I walked past, then you would be aware that I was feeding. Which bothers me not. However, for the first time last week I felt vulnerable and a target whilst feeding my Minier-Moose. 2 girls spotted me as I wandered through a town Centre feeding using the muslin method and made no attempt at keeping their remarks quiet. They did not like the fact that I was breastfeeding publicly and their words hurt. They singled me out and made fun. I knew what I was doing was right. But, they made me question my choice to feed somewhat. 

But, not for long. Not for long at all! Just as my head dropped, 2 other women walked past, seeing and hearing what had just happened and gave breastfeeding some real 'big upping'. They shouted 'You keep feeding that baby. You're doing a great job. Haters gonna hate. Let them. You're doing great!" They shouted those words so loud, making sure that everyone could hear and there were nods of agreement. People were looking and I felt great. I went from feeling very self aware to not being able to care. Those 2 women gave me back the confidence that I had lost minutes before. And, for that I thank them. Thank you! 
So, I just want to take a second to 'big up' all those that take the time to 'big up' those of us that choose to feed our children from our boob. It is not weird, it is not unnatural, it is not something to be laughed at or sexualised. It is exactly what it says on the tin 'feeding.' This is just the way that I have chosen to feed and keep my baby alive. And, it is people like those 2 ladies that remind us of this. I thank them for making me feel good, making me feel proud and making me feel content in the notion that what I was doing was and is okay. 

Never apologise for the choice you made when feeding your baby. Be it bottle or breast. That's the choice you made and you made it with your babies health at the forefront of your decision. You should be proud of yourself.
Please, join me in 'BIGGING UP' the "Breastfeeding big uppers!' because they make us feel GREAT!!! 

Monday, 17 August 2015

How To Welcome A Newborn Into Your Toddlers World

So, how do you do it? How do you make your toddler understand? How do you help your little, toddling individual be accepting of this new being that's been dumped firmly in the middle of his current world and his everything? Honestly, I don't know the answer. I'm not entirely sure. But, I can offer up my very own tips and tricks.

  1. Talk about your new baby long before it arrives.
    The more you talk about them, the more you familarise your toddler with the idea them. There's no nasty surprises for them when your little bundle arrives. No surprise because you've spoken about this moment for a long time. You have prepared them. You've got them as excited as you. I believe that is the best feeling that you can encourage in your toddler - Excitement. Why shouldn't he be excited at the prospect of a new little brother or sister? Get talking and keep your little one talking too.

  2. Allow them to help you prepare.Give them a paintbrush and allow them to tackle the nursery with you. Let them help you choose the wallpaper or paint colour (If you're like me. Allow them to think they have chosen the wallpaper or paint colour. WINNER) You can let them help you prepare your bump. My little Moose used to help me moisturise his baby sisters bump and it was lovely. It was a really amazing moment that we could all share and when the baby kicked, my toddlers face lit up. Don't leave them out, get them involved the best you can and enjoy the preparation as a family, toddler included.
  3. Introduce them to other babies.
    Now, don't just find a random baby out for a stroll in a pushchair and encourage your toddler to talk to it. That's not cool and could be deemed a little weird. I had a good friend that had a baby a few months before I did. Being with her and her new little one really helped my toddler understand babies. It got him excited. It allowed him to see how a baby works and what it requires. My friend was really lovely and let Moose feed and all sorts. That really helped him feel prepared for his little Sister.
  4. Perhaps a present?Totally up to you. But, we brought a present from the newborn to her big brother and from the big brother to the new born. Only small gifts. Just a little something to show no threat. And, it was lovely. A really lovely moment when they first met. Our toddler could not believe that his new sister had brought him a present and had got it so right. I guess some would beg to differ with this idea. But, we all like a present now and then don't we? ;-)
  5. Let them be your right hand man.
    Mini Moose is always on hand for his sister when I need him. He is more than happy to pass me a nappy, hand me a wipe or sing to his sister. And, I think that is because he has been number 1 helper from the start. I've never stopped him from lending a hand even if it has been a little inconvenient.
  6. Tell them that you love them.
    This, I feel is the most important thing that I could have done and do do to help my toddler accept his new little Sister and welcome her into his world. I tell him, we tell him we love him all the time. And, we tell him because we do. We really do. We love both him and his sister more than they will probably ever know.

    And, there you have it. It may not prove to be the most useful blog post that you have ever read. But, I hope it helps someone somewhere along the line. Our Mini Moose has welcomed his sister like a dream. He has his loving to hard moments where his kisses look painful. But, other than that he has actually really amazed us and proved himself to be a very kind and caring little man. Ultimately, we are extremely proud of him and we just know that he is and always will make a top big brother.