i'm pregnant and it's going to be a rollercoaster

cankles and cackles October 23, 2009

Hello Little Poogie,

sleeping or not sleeping – it all happens in our house

after an atrocious day of not sleeping so well yesterday, you’re now sleeping.  Well, I lie.  You just woke up.  But I’m good here on the couch as your stellar Aunt Reegs has just gone in to get you.  And in tow is your friend G.  She’s two and is very keen to get to know you better after meeting you a few weeks ago.  So I suspect that I may be ok lying here on the couch and tap-tap-tapping away while I have the opportunity.  Full kudos again to your Aunt Reegs, who is looking surprisingly refreshed for a woman who crept in the door after 4am after a night of dinner, drinks and gay-star talent competition-watching and then manic dancing at Brisbane’s best and brightest gay venues with friends.  She is now up and looking after you, after getting me food, hanging out the laundry, and all the other sundry domestic tasks that I just can’t do with a broken ankle.


The trick you seem to be working on at the moment involves your voice. Specifically the modulation of your voice’s volume. We have been greeted with squeals of glee when you’re laughing – much like a cackling wizard. And howls of, well just howls of noise. And varying degrees of growls. Usually you growl when you’re hungry. But not anymore. Growls are ok whenever. And at whatever volume. Its all good fun.


I hate my ankle boot. It is not comfortable and when my foot is elevated causes me to lose feeling in my toes. Not great. And it woke me up about 58 times last night from the lack of toe feeling-pain. Have rung doctor. They suggest it’s too tight. Too tight. I’m not an idiot. Of course I’ve checked that. …… Grump grump. I shouldn’t have bothered ringing them. I guess the boots aren’t designed for comfort. ….Bah.

baby sign language and excitement

I’ve decided after speaking to a few mums about it at the Australian Breastfeeding Association meetings, and hearing various anecdotes from friends and family who’ve seen it in practice, that Baby Sign Language has a bunch of benefits and that you should try to learn it. Your dad and I both think it will be fun trying, even if it takes a while! And so I went on to the most wonderful library service of any city I’ve ever lived in: The Brisbane City Council library, and found four books on it. Clicked on them to reserve to my local library. And Voila! A few days and $1.50 or so later, they have arrived. Your dad got them for me yesterday and I’ve been reading the introductions in them and comparing. More posts to come… But Poogie, get prepared, I’m thinking about which signs to start with and you’re going to be subjected to my and your dad’s attempts at signing. I know that you don’t have full control of your hands yet, and have only just started to notice your feet, but I think if we start now then you’ll get there at some point, and by then your dad and I should know a fair few signs. I’ll keep you updated 🙂


the sign for baby

Love and kisses (you love kisses and do the standard baby open-mouth version)


i officially have a cankle. Yes, singular. And you don't like bottles all that much! October 11, 2009

Hello Poogie,

Well. Today is Sunday. I’ve just given you a big feed and you are grunting away in your cot. We’re hoping you’ll have a sleep, but you seem to be resisting. I can’t come and get you as I’m lying on the day-bed, foot up on a pile of pillows. I have a big fat ankle underneath a leg that is in plaster. The ankle is now offically reconstructed. Despite wishing on Friday that I could go back and undo the decision to have it done, its all ok. I got the ankle operated on last Thursday, and we came home on Friday. Right now I can make it to the bathroom and managed to mostly shower myself this morning, but that is the extent of my mobility. I’ve got crutches which I’m still learning how to use (I’m giving myself gold stars for finally after three days having come up with a way of using them to get up from the toilet – that was tough before). So you’re relying on your dad for all assistance with moving and care. Apart from the feeding. You stilll come visit me for that. And you do come and play with me: sitting on my tum and doing some talking a few times a day.

So. Thursday went pretty well overall. You and your dad came in with me to the hospital at an ungodly hour in the morning, then we waited for hours as I was the last operation on the morning’s surgery list. You had a good feed and were happily sleeping in your pram when I got put into the wheelchair & wheeled off down into the basement of the hospital for the surgery. I was a bit nervous, but feeling ok about it. That was until I was sitting by myself in my wheelchair in the pre-op area when I heard the screams and cries of a small boy. I just lost it at that point and started bawling. Good timing as the anaethetist came to put in my canula at that point. She explained that where I was was connected to the recovery room, so the little boy was just waking up from having his adenoids out. And wanted his mum. It was horrible to listen to. I felt so sorry for the kid.

The surgery itself was fine. I had a spinal anasthesia so that I could breastfeed you straight away, so I was awake for the operation. I had a mild sedative to keep me calm and just chatted with the anaethetist and the anaethestic nurse while the surgeons did my ankle behind a sheet. While I was getting operated on, your dad took you for a walk outside. I had expressed some breastmilk for you and he had just taken you to your grandad’s office and was going to heat it up when the nurse called him to say I was back in my bed on the ward. So you came and found me and immediately had a great big feed and a cuddle.

in the hospital bed with baby

you and me in the hospital right after I got back from surgery

You and your dad then stayed with me for the rest of the day, going home at around 7pm after I’d given you two huge night feeds. It was hard to see you go home with your dad: I’d not spent a night apart from you since you were born. I cried a little bit.

you and your dad going home at night... leaving me at the hospital. the view from my bed.

Your dad tells me that you were very well behaved at home. He gave you your nightly bath, then tried to give you another feed with some expressed breastmilk from a bottle. Apparently you looked very confused about the whole thing, especially when you tasted the milk from the bottle. And you weren’t really into it, I think you only managed a few sucks. But you slept right through the night as normal anyways. He got up after five in the morning and heated you some more breastmilk, and when you woke you were still a little confused by it all, but since you were hungry you had about 80ml. Enough to keep you going for a while.

I had a bit of a shocking night in the hospital myself, the lady in the bed beside me fell out of her bed at 10pm and there were nurses going back and forth for the next four hours. Then there were the normal checks every hour. I woke at 5 am with the sun. Ready to go home. I called your dad at 6:30 to check what time you were coming in, to see if I should express to empty my very full boobs. Thankfully, he was already getting ready, and you guys arrived at just after 7. Your Aunt Reeg brought you in while your dad went to park the car. I gave you a big feed and you seemed happy. A few hours later we were able to get out and go home. Yay. Me wobbling on my new crutches.

SO.. All in all, it worked out well. I was really nervous about the whole thing. It was a bit more difficult than expected as the hospital was really not very baby-friendly, and sharing a room with four people wasn’t great with you, but you were really well-behaved and so it was bearable. And most important, you and I are both ok.

you playing on my tum as I lie on the day-bed with my foot elevated. My cast in the background.

Since then you’ve been looked after by your Dad and Aunt R, and have been loving all the attention from family who have dropped by to see us. I think you’re a little grumpy at me for not picking you up or playing with you quite as much as normal (well, maybe confused rather than grumpy). But you’re generally still your smiling little self.

Love you

ps. and you seemed to sense that I was upset in the hospital when I was in a bit of pain post-op, and you were so good about it. And again when we got some bad news on Friday. Big hugs. thank-you.

you love the attention! three aunts in attendance.


Blood Tests for Babies – erk. I’m feeling sick just thinking about it. July 29, 2010

Hello Poogie,

So. Feeling very nervous. Have just consumed most of a family-sized block of chocolate in an upset/nervous/tension-filled empty moment. Yes, single “moment”, not plural “moments”. I literally inhaled it.

We are back from holidays and in organising mode I phoned the pathology lab yesterday to see how far in advance of your next doctor’s appointment I need to get the blood and other tests they want you to have done. And I was thinking about a week out from the appointment. Then got told a month out. Which was last week. So today it is. We are off to the hospital as soon as you wake up from your morning nap for a blood and other pathology tests.

And you know how I hate needles? I’m sure you know that, as I told you enough times when I was pregnant about the fact that I was just getting all these needles for your good, not mine.. And some of my experiences with needles lately haven’t been the greatest: my experience in a birthing suite with some bleeding during pregnancy, and a bad experience that I didn’t go through in this blog but did happen when they were trying to get a line into me for my surgery. Anyway, I hate needles at the best of time. Worst when I’m having to have one stuck in me. I thought. Until today. Now I’ve realised that I hate them even more when I have to think of one getting stuck into you. AAAAAAAAGHH…. (vomitous feeling, chocolate coming up my throat).

Just needed to get out some nervous energy. Erk. You’ll be fine, I’m sure. I’ve packed three of your favourite books, and a tub full of pomegranate seeds and sultanas, your favourite.

You’ll be fine.

You’ll be fine.

You’ll be fine.

I’ll be not fine.

love you


Is it a bird, is it a plane? YES! The amazing signing baby! – Movie Monday (once again belated) May 11, 2010


It’s belated Movie Monday again.  I’ve been busy, what can I say.

You have also been busy.  Learning.  Do you remember that I’ve mentioned that I had decided then started trying to teach you baby sign language?

Well, the fruits of my and your labour are starting to pay off.  (more…)


Visiting the beach November 23, 2009

Hello Poogie,

Well. 5 months old last week! Congratulations. Time is flying by.

New things for the week:

  • still eating more solids (banana, avocado, potato, zucchini, plain yoghurt, carrot, pumpkin, farex)
  • still refusing the breast a little during the day (frustrating for everyone, but we’re working through it with some help from the australian breastfeeding association).  You’re unfortunately making up for the lack of day-time feeds with more night waking, which is difficult for me (lack of sleep and tired mum’s are a bit more cranky than usual)
  • you rolled over the other way a few times (i.e. front to back).  Managed a good one this morning where you rolled clean off the mat and smacked your little head into the wooden floor.  Ouch.  You got a bit of a fright and cried. Overall still more stressful for me than you though, I think. I have many years of falls and spills to get used to the fact that you will hurt yourself sometimes.
  • you went to the beach and in the ocean & you swam in a pool!

dad and poogie on the beach at Rainbow

dad and poogie on the beach at Rainbow

The beach was fun.  We went up to Rainbow Beach for the weekend to visit your Grandma E & Grandpa, and your cousins & aunt & uncle were there too.  It’s a bit of a long journey for you – we left at 1:30pm on Friday and didn’t get there until 6pm, with a few breaks for you to play and tire yourself out as you can’t be in the car for that long.   It is beautiful there though – quiet and not too many people with lovely water temperature.  You had a great time playing with your cousins and getting into all the noise and confusion.

you and your grandpa

poogie and grandpa on the beach

And you went in the water of the ocean (a bit too cold, you weren’t 100% keen) and the pool (loved it) for the first time. AND my boot is allowed to be OFF for spells now, so I got to SWIM too! (YAY YAY YAY). We will definitely be doing lots of swimming over the coming weeks, though as you have the fair hair and skin of our family, and we live in Australia, we stay indoors between 10am and 3pm and swim before or after that… The beach was best on Sunday morning at around 7am, when it was quiet and lovely. We had it all to ourselves until, lo and behold, your Dad looked up to see our friends K & kids F & F & J about 3 metres away. Who we didn’t even know were going to be in Rainbow. Good thing, as it meant I got to have a swim too as K helped me out of the water as your dad held you (still a bit unsteady on the old fixed-up ankle).

baby on the beach

you on the beach

Love you

baby on the beach

you on the beach with me. Teething huh!

P.S. Not at all fun: the trip home. We had a big break for dinner having left at 5:30pm. But you still just got sick of the car and then got yourself into such a state you just couldn’t sleep. One and a half hours of screaming baby in a confined space with lots of breaks in random places where we pulled off the highway. Yerk. It’ll be a while before we attempt such a long drive with you again. Not worth it.


Meeting more of your family! and the pram-wheelchair-dad train October 21, 2009

Hello Poogie,

Happy fourth-month birthday for yesterday! Despite my being laid-up on the couch most of the day, the days are still flying by at a rapid rate. Too fast.

Excitement for you this week has been meeting your Canadian Grandma E & Grandpa. They arrived on Monday (it’s Wednesday now) and came to visit you briefly. There were lots of cuddles and talking. You seemed to like them too. Your Grandma came over to help look after you yesterday afternoon too – and you had a big play with her. Lucky you!

Today we’ve been out for the first time since my operation. Off to the hospital to get my cast off and changed for a boot. And while at the hospital a visit to see your Grandad who had an operation yesterday. He was good, but still in intensive care for monitoring so you weren’t allowed in. Just me. We were a sight at the hospital though: I wished we could have had someone take a photo! My foot was really sore as they took the cast off and put a new boot on it and had to manipulate the ankle a little to get it into the boot. Pain. I lay down for 20 minutes or so afterwards but couldn’t then crutch around the hospital to see your Grandad as it was too sore, so your dad got me a wheelchair. But you were there too, in your pram. So we formed a little train: you in front in your pram, me pushing your pram from within my wheelchair, and your dad pushing the wheelchair. Good thing the elevators are large. It worked though, which was the main thing.

So. Today’s pictures are about feet. My foot. And your feet. My foot is just plain sore. Your feet are growing at a rapid rate!

Love you


pointing your feet

moving your feet - practising kicking

kicking your feet

my ankle with the new surgical boot thingamy


Bored mother. October 12, 2009

Filed under: healthcare,Parenting,Raising a Child — rakster @ 10:08 pm
Tags: ,

Hello Poogie!

You’re bored with me (not being able to pick you up and sling you about in our normal pattern). And I’m just simply bored.

On couch.

Elevated foot.

chilling with mum's broken ankle on the day bed

You learnt to suck your thumb today (as opposed to the previous efforts which was just whatever body part fit in at the time).

Bored mum.

Love you

poogie's first attempts at thumb sucking. Lets hope it doesn't last.


Stinky Baby. Poogie Woogie. Little Numpty. Apu. September 20, 2009

Filed under: Parenting,Raising a Child — rakster @ 9:00 pm

Hello Poogie Woogie,

give a boogie.

I just thought I’d let you know that the time is still flying by.  Another week has passed.   You’ve grown immensely again.   This week you rolled over for the first time – from your front to your back (Thursday).  Much to the delight of myself, J & J, who were visiting and cheering you on.  I suspect you rolled just to be able to better see the cheerers – you haven’t managed to do it again.   Though your dad and I have observed that you somehow seem to be able to inch your way across our bed until you are right in the middle when you’re put on the edge with us.   We end up all squished to one side.  And you can definitely turn from your back to your side, that has been happening for a while.  Just not yet from back to stomach.  But HOLD OFF.  We’re happy that you’re immobile for the moment.

feeding the baby - week 12

mum and poogie and mum's group - week 13

This week we ventured out to the park a lot for a few mums’ group meetings.  It is nice down in Orleigh Park at the moment – spring has sprung and there are some big trees in full bloom, the weather isn’t too hot yet, and its nice to watch the boats go by on the river.  You seem to like staring up from the blanket into the leaves of a ginormous fig tree we sit under.  And I enjoy being outside to.   I’m not looking forward to the next few months of hot hot weather when it gets uncomfortable to do that.

On the news front – big change for you and me coming up.  You know how I hurt my ankle when you were in my belly and need surgery? Well, the lack of ability to use the ankle really is an issue, I’m finding it hard to go up and down the back stairs, or any stairs really, when I’m carrying you.  Its almost impossible now that you’re 6.5 kg (wow – so big already!) to grab you with one hand and use the other to support myself on the rail, taking one step at a time when going down. The deciding factor for me was last weekend when I went swimming in the sea and realised that I still can’t push off the sand when in water to support myself against a strong current.  I need to be able to do that when we take you swimming in the sea when you’re a bit bigger.

So.  Your Aunt R is coming back from Japan/Brazil, and she’s kindly agreed to help A LOT, and your dad’s business is just starting so he isn’t committed 100% 0f the time yet, so in three weeks time I’m going to bite the bullet, and get the chop, so to speak.   I’m scared, and worried and scared and worried.  I worry about the surgery, but mostly I worry about afterwards and not being able to care for you.  I’ll be bed-bound for a week, then after that the next 3-4 weeks immobile in the house, then slowly starting to move with crutches after that but no weight bearing.  After 10-12 weeks I’ll be able to start weight-bearing practice and getting physio to rehabilitate myself.  Which all means that I’m not going to be able to care for you by myself.  I won’t be able to walk, let alone pick you up.

The decision to do it now is based also on the fact that it will be nigh impossible to get this done once you are mobile.  And I can’t put it off forever.  I want to be able to take you on bushwalks, and jump from stone to stone in streams, and swim in the ocean.   And run after you in games of chasey.    Currently limited and unsafe on my instable ankle.

I’ve run out of time! youre shouting at me .  can only type    with one hand

love mum

ps.  some photos from the last week

poogie in the red chair - week 13

poogie in the red chair - week 13

poogie in new hat

poogie in new hat

poogie reading

poogie reading

mum,  dad and poogie

mum, dad and poogie

fatso cow baby

fatso cow baby

boobie baby

boobie baby

P.P.S. Oh yeah, and your current nicknames are Stinky Baby, Poogie Woogie, Little Numpty and Apu.


Hospital Bag. What to take. June 3, 2009

Hello Baby,

well.  Aren’t you an active little volcano.  Your mum is very not happy this morning after a shocking night’s sleep.  It wasn’t all your fault, but mostly hormones.   Woke up at 2:45 am and my brain was just “BING – ON!”.   With all sorts of half-real imagininings and panic and stress.  Your Grandad, my work, your dad’s employment.   All non-you related things.   Things to do, people to see.   Aagh.  And then got a major attack of the itches all over my body for no apparent reason.  I almost convinced myself there was a small spider in the bed that had been feasting on me.  But examination in the bathroom revealed that was all just ficticious imagining.

An hour and a half later I finally gave up and got up, changed to the spare room and read my book for an hour.   Yann Martel’s “The Facts Behind the Helsinki Roccamatios’.   Thankfully I was past the first story – the title of the novel, as that one made me ball my eyes out for about 20 minutes before bed the other night (though in retrospect, although upsetting perhaps helped me sleep better as I was emotionally exhausted by it.  Needless to say the other night your dad did his usual “what the hell are you reading”.  Tried to steal the book and throw it away a few times.  I protested.  Crying sometimes is ok according to my book-reading philosophy.  Ended up he still had to comfort me after the story, with his usual grumpy hug.  But I ended up with the book – so this is what I read last night).  Anyway, the story I read wasn’t exactly uplifting – small sections of a warden’s account of a man’s last hours on death row – the account written to the mother.  About 10 different versions.  So not happy, happy, joy, joy.  But it worked.  Took my mind off whatever it was that had been keeping me awake and stressed, and I managed to go back to sleep.   You then woke me a number of times – your movements at the moment when I’m lying down seem to be pretty major.  Like all limbs and body flailing around like you’re playing volleyball in there.   Its actually pretty disconcerting but I take it as a good sign that you’re healthy.   But yeah, overall I missed a few hours of much-needed sleep so today am feeling a bit shabby to say the least.

Anyway, in order to appease the rising anxious nerves, I haven’t managed to pack a bag for the hospital.   But I have written a list.   So I’ve made a start.   And you dad is in charge of labour food (mostly for him from what people have told me, but we’ll see), and he has made his list too.   Neither of us have got any further than that as far as I know.   So my list:

  • your dad
  • me
  • camera, charger & memory stick
  • cards & games for if we get stuck in a maternity ward for hours with nothing to do.  Or just so we can play cribbage between contractions.   Wishful thinking on my part.  But I’m going with it.
  • my phone.  yes,  I’m addicted to my iPhone and it is coming along with the charger.   How else am I going to communicate with the outside world if there is no wifi / computer in the hospital?   What were they thinking – its a brand new facility, where were the wifi access points, we wondered when we did our tour?   Yes, again, I think you are going to subsume my entire attention after your arrival, and perhaps I won’t be thinking about the internet at all.  In fact I really think I won’t give a flying contraction.   But these are the deranged thoughts I’m frantically having as my ability to reason / think logically seems to desert me more each day the closer you come to arriving.   So I’m putting it on the list so that my brain can stop churning over it and worrying for no rational reason.
  • a bar of lemon myrtle soap.  So I can smell it if I feel like it in the delivery suites.   Its a good smell.
  • a big poster of the rainforest / waterfall to look at in the delivery suite.
  • nightie
  • jammies
  • toothbrush, paste, hair wash, moisturiser, hair band
  • daywear.  That is on the hospital’s suggested list.   What the hell does that mean.  I think I will just shove random t-shirts into the bag on the day.  Whatever is clean.  Pants are surely optional when you’re in hospital and have just had a baby.
  • new big boobie maternity bras (yay, I finally found one that fit when in Sydney a few weeks ago, and then ordered up from the states – they arrived yesterday so now I have enough big-boob over-the-shoulder-milk-holders to hopefully be comfortable.  For reference – Anita brand seemed to be the only ones that came in big enough sizes and didn’t make me look like I was a large mono-boobed monster and felt comfortable too).
  • granny knickers – yeah, I’m taking the advice of a friend and buying up a pack of granny knickers that I can THROW OUT soon after you’ve arrived and we’ve gone home.  I looked at the ‘wearable’ knickers – those incontinence knickers yesterday.  One of my friends who is due the same time was given some by another friend who recently had a baby and said they were great.   Yes, maybe convenient and I know some mums use them.  But I don’t know if I could bring myself to put them on.  Too much like your nappies.    It might just depress me.   I’ll stick with maternity pads for the moment.
  • my ugg boots
  • my ankle brace
  • nursing pads to stop my leaky boobies
  • maybe a few cloth nappies so that we can get the midwives to show us some nifty folding techniques to keep your liquid poo in.
  • clothes for you –
    • 6 singlets,
    • 6 growsuits,
    • a beanie,
    • 2 pairs of socks,
    • and a blanket to wrap you in for when you come home
  • and newly added as of yesterday, something stylin’ to wear home so I feel like a superstar mum.  My friend I visited yesterday had a great vintage long dress that almost glows radioactively there is so much orange and green from the 70s in it.   I don’t know I have that exact thing, but surely there is something in my wardrobe left that doesn’t make me look like a bloated whale.

Ok.  Got it all out.  Can now relax.  Schedule relax time.

Love you


p.s. Byron Bay weekend beckons.  I think I really need it.


hospitals and surgery (no, for everyone else except you… hopefully we'll be avoiding the surgery bit when you come, and minimising the hospital bit too. But I'm getting more used to them – hospitals that is.) May 12, 2009

Filed under: exercise,healthcare,pregnancy — rakster @ 4:49 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Hello Little Speckle,

Well, doctors, doctors, doctors.  Have spent the majority of yesterday and some of today around hospitals and doctors.

We (you and I) had a fun (not) morning yesterday in the oncology ward at the hospital, watching all sorts of people get needles and drips and what not.   Lots of waiting, waiting.  I was a bit stressed and then just got used to it.   You were pretty content with it all.   Not the funnest place on the planet to be, but not as bad as I expected it to be.

Then today we went to the specialist for my ankle,  remember I sprained it back when you really were only a little Speck?  Well, as they suspected, the orthopedic surgeon confirmed that my ankle needs surgery to repair it so I can walk, run and use it properly again.  They are going to have to tighten up my ligaments, reattach / move the reticulum around the ankle tendons, and then hopefully my tendons haven’t torn and all they need to do is strengthen them out and carve a deeper groove for them in my bone.  If I’ve torn them all to shreds they are going to have to take some tendon from somewhere else in my leg and then use it to repair the ankle.  Bone-grinding goodness.   Yay.   But as we knew, I have to wait until you’ve popped out before any of this can occur.   And once that happens, I am going to be unable to move around so much for a while, so basically I need to be able to pick a time when I can then afford to be on crutches for six weeks post-op to recover.   Yay yay yay lucky me.   So more fun stuff to look forward to.

Otherwise all is well.  You’re kicking around like normal and I’m feeling like a whale.  You and I are off to Sydney for the rest of the week tomorrow morning.  It should be our last plane trip on the way back, as I’m getting up to the no-fly time for pregnant people.   Its going to be busy, but hopefully we’ll get some time to chill out a bit too – not coming back until Saturday afternoon, so a little bit of hang-out and do non-work-stuff time in there too.  Anything special you feel like doing?  Well, you let me know…

love you