Changes have been happening daily over here.
Notably my hair. Oh yes, I'm a walking talking cliche. New baby, new hair. I always wondered why mothers did that. Now I know the answer, or well at least I have mine.
1// Postpartum hair loss is real, people! I've been leaving a hair trail wherever I go, and when you find full-length strands of hair in your baby's hands, mouth, nappy, you know it's time for that cut. Plus I needed to do something before my hoover went on strike :/
2// That need to claim back that bit of you. You know, that bit that is not determined or decided by another person. I'm learning though that trying to morph yourself back into the 'before kids' you, is futile. The old you had never carried and then squeezed out little people from her body. The new you, has. So she kinda bloody rocks in her own way. She deserves to feel good and celebrate that change.
So snip, snip, snip.
Ta-da! I can now walk freely without worrying that I'm a modern day Hansel and Gretel who had swapped breadcrumbs for hair strands.
Next change, I didn't see coming.
Archie self-weaned from the breast. It all started with him waking up loads in the night a few months back. He was starting to use me as a dummy, a few sucks and he was out like a light again. Good for him, not so good for me. I always said I would exclusively breastfeed Archie as long as it suited the whole family, and me getting up exhausted and grumpy everyday from being a human dummy in the night wasn't fair on anyone.
Up until this point Archie refused a dummy or a bottle, so I decided to give him a dummy to play with in the day, he would mostly just bite it and then occasionally suck it. Then when he woke of a night, he happily accepted the dummy, soon spit it out and back to sleep he went. After just a few nights of that he actually stopped waking up for it.
Seeing him happy to take a dummy we thought we'd try the bottle with him again. Michael has been desperate to feed Archie, I think it can be hard for men when their partner breastfeeds. It can not only be excluding but I know it made Michael feel pretty useless when a feeding frenzy stage was happening, wanting to help but unable to. I think it was also harder on Michael as he helped feed Caleb when he was younger and it was something he didn't want to miss out on with Archie.
We tried a bottle randomly one night fully expecting him to decline it, but no, he sank the whole thing. I was thrilled for Michael, but devastated for me. I knew in my heart the timing to share feeding Archie was right, but my goodness it did not make it feel any less bittersweet.
So when I got over the initial shock of him accepting a bottle, I then thought, yay! Great, we can now have the best of both worlds, breast and bottle.
Silly, silly me. When will I realise it is not me who makes the decisions around here.
I should have known actually, when I look back there was defiant signs. For a few weeks leading up to giving Archie the bottle I had noticed he was more distracted and less interested feeding from me, and biting was becoming a common occurrence (ugh that was not fun!), looking back now I think he was frustrated and hungry but not feeding long enough to up my supply. No wonder when we gave him a bottle he sank it straight away, and no wonder just a few days later he refused to feed from me at all :/
Big, fat, ugly tears have been cried over this. I know looking at the bigger picture this is such a good and positive thing. It's been Archie's choice and he's now gone seamlessly into his next stage, but oh my mama heart. I wished I could have known it was coming to and end, to have been able to savour those last few weeks more. But again, I keep looking at the bigger picture. The last 8 months of feeding Archie have been incredible, yes at times tough, but on the whole incredible. I am so proud of him and of me too, and although that stage is over, its forever ingrained on my heart. Those precious months have now given my boy the confidence and assurance to be in charge of his own feeding.
Oh did I mention he doesn't allow you to feed him the bottle?! That's right, he has to do it himself!!! How on earth can I go from having a breastfed baby who refuses a bottle to a baby who wants to feed himself the bottle!??! I think it suits how he's used to being fed from the boob, he likes to be able to take the bottle out himself for a little breather and then pops it back into his mouth when he's ready. I honestly just sit there stunned even now. When did my little baby get so grown up?
Next up in our world of changes.
I swore the last time I moved I would never move again. My gypsy heart was done, but now two kids in and realising we need a garden of our own, it's time to move.
It's not as simple as just finding a house with a garden though, we have the dreaded two words to think about....school catchment.
We're torn between getting a fixer upper job in our area, and knowingly letting ourselves into a year of renovation hell with two little ones, or moving area.
My dad laughed at me recently when I said I was worried about switching areas, he couldn't understand how the 17 year old me could decide to move to Edinburgh and the complete unknown, but the 33 year old me was worried about moving areas within the same city. Crazy, huh. I think I need that 17 year old to sit my ass down and give me a good talking to ;)
So yes, as you can probably guess my head and heart has been a bit all over the place of late. but my hair hasn't, so you know. There is that at least.
Oh and Archie, he may not want to feed from his mama anymore, but he sure wants to cuddle a whole lot, and that is more that fine by me ♥