Should I have an epidural?

pregnancy

It’s been a while since I’ve written about anything to do with pregnancy so I thought I’d do a little something on epidurals for any of those expectant mothers who aren’t quite sure what they want to do regarding pain relief.

The second I found out I was pregnant all I could think about is how much this is going to hurt getting this baby out of me. I always said I wanted an epidural even without doing zero research about how it works, what it feels like and the side affects. So I thought I’d put together a little something just for mums to be to have a read about what an epidural is really all about.

Before I begin on my story I’d like to give you some idea what an epidural actually is. So here goes. An epidural is an anaesthetic injected into the bottom of the spine to stop pain.

A drip will be placed in your arm so you can be given fluids while you’re having the epidural.You’ll be asked to sit down and lean forwards, or lie on your side with your knees up close your chest. You’ll be given an injection of anethasic to numb the skin where the epidural will be inserted. A needle is used to insert a fine plastic tube called an epidural catheter into your back (spine) near the nerves that carry pain messages to your brain.The needle is then removed, leaving just the catheter in your spine.You may feel mild discomfort when the epidural needle is positioned and the catheter is inserted.

Pain relief medicines are then given through the catheter. These take about 20 to 30 minutes to take full effect.

Your chest, tummy and legs may feel numb while the epidural medicines are being used, and your legs may not feel as strong as usual.

While the catheter remains in your back, it can be used to top up your pain relief medicines manually or using an automatic pump.

Please if your a pregnant women and are frightened or anxious please don’t read this next part!!

For those women who manage to birth a child without an epidural I applaud you, I really do It takes a strong women to push a water melon out of a pin hole with no pain relief. Believe me I gave it my best shot. But that just wasn’t good enough and I’d just given up and tapped out around 3 hours after contractions began.

I was very fortunate enough to be having my baby at one of the best hospitals in the country, the John Radcliffe hospital in oxford where the midwives and doctors went above and beyond to look after me. I’d already had it in my head that I maybe wanted an epidural so what they did was get a doctor out to me before it all got to messy and painful to explain what would actually happen blah blah and the side affects.

From my memory There’s not really much to report except I remember the doctor telling me a rare side affect is prolonged lower back pain but not to worry as it’s unlikely to happen. Well fuck me with a feather I’m one of “those” rare ones who now has lower back pain almost every single night I’m in bed. I’m really starting to wonder weather that needle in the back was worth this dull ache I get every single fucking day.

Anyway back to the delivery room…

If I could describe a contraction in one word it would probably be the worst fucking pain I’ve ever had in my whole life. Okay that’s 7 words but it bloody hurt!! If Jesus had a stick I’m sure he’d shove it up my arse just to make things worse. By the 3 hour mark I’d had enough I’m hysterically crying screming and shouting it’s like a scene from the Texas chain saw massacre. I mean the gas and air is pretty good but nothing was beating this pain. I’m screming at them to get me an epidural.

So in they pop and by this time I’m high on gas and air and I really don’t have a clue what’s gong on I just remember being in so much pain and not being able to see because I was crying so hard.

Anyway they put this really cold antiseptic stuff all over my back and it was bloody freezing. I’m told to sit on the bed and bend forward like a prawn (as you do) After that I don’t really know what was happening because between contractions and them continually stabbing me with a needle I had No Idea what was going on. Now I’m not going to lie it really bloody hurt when they finally got the needle in my spine, and I mean IT REALLY HURT. That badly that I just couldn’t control my crying and screming. All in all it took about 20 minuets to get in my spine.

After all that… 5 minuets later I was sat up in bed compleatly numb from the waste down watching only fools and horses on the iPad. It honestly works that quick. The relief was just amazing. The down side was I now had to have a tube fitted up my fanny cause I can no longer control my bladder. Which ofcorse is just icing on the cake isn’t it!

I mean In Heinz sight thank god I had that epidural because after an 18 hour labour I never would have coped without one! Unluckily for me I’m left with lower back pain on a daily basis. I’ve been advised to do stretches and yoga to help. Weill see what happens.

So should you have an epidural? My advice is don’t plan and wait and see what happens.

There’s one thing I really dont regret about my labour and that’s getting that epidural!

Happy birthing!!

Z

Xxx

The Running mum

pregnancy

Basically I thought I needed to start doing some excersise again as I’ve gotten such a fatty. So I thought I’d give my old friend running a bell. And as it turns out I’ve still got it in me to pound a few pavements even with dragging that extra 2 stone behind me.

Don’t get me wrong I’m far from the fitness level I used to be and my body is no temple anymore, I’ve got flabby bits flowing in the wind and bulgy bits bubbling over, stretch marks up to my ears and and legs the size of a couple of whales slapping togeather like their trying to catch fish. Heck I don’t care anymore you all know me by now, you know there’s not much I don’t get embarrassed about.

So after weeks of trying to even get out the front door and do something about this fatty mess I call my body I finally managed to get back into running. Just between you me and gate post I’ve actually signed up to run the oxford half marathon 2020. It probabley won’t be going ahead now for obsivious reasons. But I entered and I got in. Let’s leave it at that for now because what’s about to come is brutal.

Laced up and off I trot on my first run in a long time. Fuck me am I really out of touch after 2 minutes my legs felt like they were on fire! And I don’t mean sexy on fire I mean fucking chop my legs off and kill me now on fire. Jesus Christ I swear child birth wasn’t even this painful. After getting all stressy with myself I decided to walk for a bit. Anyway to cut a long story short I couldn’t fucking do it so I got in a strop and went home. The end.

After a lot of huffing and puffing and getting angry that I’m to fat and can’t do it and everything else off I went again. Now I’ve got a really good app called MapMyRun for anyone who wants to know. It tracks my distance, my time and even shows a map of where I’ve been it’s pretty swish!

So off I went. It wasn’t the most pleasant experience I’ve ever had BUT it was better then the day before. That’s a result right? I must be doing something right. So I manged a mile and I felt pretty bloody good.

A couple of days later I had planned a longer run. I wasn’t exactly sure how far I wanted to go so I just went and hoped for the best. First mile was a right sack of shit, I was so close to giving up and going home again. Then all of a sudden something came over me and I just ran and ran and ran and ran. I was going for it! Music blaring legs like jelly watch out Forrest there’s a new girl in town!

Mile 1 passed, mile 2 and I couldn’t believe I was still going. I was bright red hot sweaty hair like a homeless person on crack but bugger me I was doing it I was really running! If there was ever a time for my fanny to fall to pieces now would be the time! I managed to make it home just in time for the app to tell me I’d done 3 miles. 3 bloody miles! Even more importantly I made it home with my fanny in tact and my legs semi usable (if you don’t count going up the stairs) .HURRAH.

I’ve never been so proud of myself. Since that day I’ve done a number of runs some good some not so good. The trick is to never give up. Never be disappointed in what you can’t do because there’s always another day. So I’m taking this opportunity now to run every other day. And hopefully lose this extra weight I’ve been carrying since having a baby. If you don’t mind I will update you regularly on what’s happening. How I’m going if my time has improved and weather or not my fanny has fallen out.

In the meantime if you see a pink haired sweaty hobo running along the A40 please give me a cheer!!

Z

Xxx

Managing mental health during a national emergency.

pregnancy

I never thought I’d have to write a post about something like this. Is it even real? Because it sure as hell feels like we are in some stephen king Novel and not in the middle of a national emergency with the country shut down and us needing permission to fart let alone even step outside our front doors. I think I speak for everyone when I say how scary and frightening this whole situation is, if I didn’t have mental health issues before then I sure as hell have now!

I’ve been walking on egg shells with my brain for a while now as I’m sure a lot of you have to. The good days are dwindling less and less whilst the bad days continue to drag on using and abusing me. The constant talk, news articals and posts on social media is mentally damaging, as I understand it is important we know what’s going on it does well to have a social media break. But the constant upkeep of it being in my face is draining the soul out of me and really making my mental health plummet to new lows. I’m having days where I can’t get out of bed, my body just aches with the overwhelming feeling of what’s the fucking point in being alive. I’ve had that feeling a lot but now I’ve got a baby to care for it’s very frightening. So I know then something has to be done. First thing is talk about how I’m feeling, I rang the doctor and got my medication dose increased which is also helping me sleep. But most importantly I’m finding things to get out of bed in the morning for, making lists and plans and I’d like to share some with you.

So what’s the best way to manage our mental health during this unprecedented time? I’ve put together a few little bits usuful and silly, funny and just plain stupid. Let’s start with something that’d actually be usuful.

Basically GET THE FUCK DRESSED in the morning. How depressing is it sitting around in your pjs all day? Brush your hair, clean your teeth and hell even put some make up on if it makes you feel good about yourself. Get some god dam routine in the morning. Because I can tell you now it makes you feel a hell of a lot worse sitting in your pants all day crying into an empty crisp packet. I sat around in my pyjamas for days crying into a cold cup of tea feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders until I actually made the effort to get ready in the mornings. Make an effort even put your best clothes on if it makes you feel better, look forward to the day ahead.

Ever fancied trying something new? Now is a good time as any. Running or skipping heck put a pineapple on your head and see how far you can walk without it falling off. Show of hands please If your one of those fuckers Hoarding the toilet roll then this is your time to shine! the possibilities are endless! Toilet roll bowling? How big a tower can you make? The worlds largest game of loo roll Jenga perhaps? Why not donate a roll to every house in the neighbourhood? Don’t forget to leave a roll you wipe your own ass on though!

Beating the brain blues can be tough so Give yourself a challenge. Bake that cake you’ve fancied Making, take up a new hobby order some craft materials online and get going. If you really want to be a daredevil try cutting your own hair? Dying it a crazy colour even? Why the hell not? This is a time for living life who gives 2 shits what anybody else thinks. Clear out those kitchen cupboards you’ve been meaning to do forever, deep clean the bathroom ! just find a reason to get up and get going.

The main thing I find difficult when I’m feeling like I’m at the bottom of the gutter is excersise. The thought of it makes me feel sick, it makes my body ache and my brain close down. I’ve spent weeks making excuses, Crying because I feel like a failure when the fact is All I need is a good old stroll in the fresh air, even a early evening run just as the sun is setting. ANYTHING to take my mind off this shitty world we are living in. If you really feel that crap even just a walk down the end of the garden and back. Pretend you’ve got a pet, take the imaginary dog to the end of the road and back. GET YOUR ARSE OUT.

Look after your mental health because if that starts to go now then we’re absolutley fucked. We need all our marbles to get through this right horse shitter of a time and I promise together we will.

Z

Xxx

Calpol junkie

pregnancy

We’ve been dealing with the pearly whites for quite a few months now but shits just got real and my child has turned into a calpol loving junkie, shooting up at any given opportunity in a bid to win the war against the teething saga he is experiencing.

If calpol dealing were a thing he’s be standing on street corners right now with a suitcase full of the stuff, imagine the modern day Del Boy, case loads of the stuff to shift. This time next year mummy we will be millionaires. in all seriousness this kid is calpol fanatic. Hed drink it by the bottle load if he had the chance.

Mummy’s going back to work

pregnancy

I actually cannot believe how quick this has come round. So many people warned me how quick my maternity leave would go and I was just like yeah yeah whatever. Now it’s almost 8 months in and I’m going back to work full time. (Crys hysterically)

It’s no secret that I went back last September because I had stupidly blown all my savings and needed some money. So since last September I’ve been doing the odd shift here and there to make some cash. Gradually doing a few more days here and there to try and ease myself in gently before I do go back full time.

Now the time has finally come and in 2 weeks time I will officially be back into full time work. I’ve had a lot of anixety and sleepless nights over this as my employer recently changed and I genuinely didn’t know if I was going to have a job to go back to. Fear not I do still have a job (thank god) and my anixety about the whole thing has really calmed down. The secret to any success is to PLAN PLAN PLAN. I’ve written endless mock Rotas of what I think I’m going to beable to do, I’ve arranged nursery (crys a little bit more) so we are raring to go!

My “plan” (basically some made up stuff in my head that helps keep me sane) is to work as much as I can to provide for my family whilst also putting them first and being there for them which is what I intend to do. My return to work is in 4 weeks time and how am I managing to keep it all together? PREPERATION! For someone like me who will sit on a problem and panic like fuck about it until I make myself ill so preperation really is key to success. How am I preparing to go back to work let me show you…

— DONT WORRY, I spent weeks really dwelling on the fact I would have to leave my baby to go back to work. I’d stay up late at night crying about it, thinking about really stupid shit like will he forget me? Will he hate me for leaving him? Ofcorse now I know that’s all bullshit and worrying really gets you nowhere.

—PLANNING. It might not work for everyone but for someone like me who freaks out over a change of routine I have to plan everything. From what hours I’m going to be working to who will be looking after Rex and not forgetting to save money to play for child care. Because that shits not cheap! If it helps get a note book, sit down with a cuppa tea and plan, jot things down and make notes and ideas of how you’re going to achieve going back to work trust me it really helps.

—GROW SOME BALLS. This might not apply to everyone. Unfortunately for me I have had to grow a set pretty quickly. I’ve spent my whole working career as a chef bending over backwards to please my employer, doing 12 hour shifts, 7 day weeks and never saying no to anything that is asked of me. All of a sudden I have a little person now that I have to put first. As frightening as it is I’ve had to be firm and say “hey my baby comes first” no more 12 hour days, no more 70 hour weeks. If my boy is porley and I need to go then I’m going. For me that is something I am struggling to put into action because I hate to be “that person” but needs must, my child comes first over any job from now on.

—CHILDCARE. When I got pregnant I never even thought about what I’d do about childcare it’s only this last month really that I’ve had to think about it. I am very lucky that my mum gets quite a bit of time off in her job so that’s 2 days a week sorted already. Yay for mums! I’ve done a lot of research about what childcare options are available to us and we’ve opted for a nursery for Rex 2 days a week and he officially starts in 2 weeks! A little tip for anyone on maternity- start saving up Early for child care because at £60 a day your going to need some savings under your belt.

—TURN NEGATIVES INTO POSITIVES I’ve had a lot of meltdowns over all the issues surrounding going back to work and the only one that has really made me feel ok about it is turning the negatives into positives. If like me you feel guilty for going back to work then then that into a positive. We as mums go back to work to earn money to support our family and to pay for all the days out, birthday and Christmas presents if we didn’t have work we wouldn’t have all that.

And that really is my guide to preparing for work. There really is no guide book on what to do and when you choose to go back. I just beg any mum who is reading this not to feel guilty or sad about returning to work. Turn that negative into a positive and go and be a working mum!

Z

Xxx

Sneeze wee

pregnancy

Luckily for you my loyal readers who keep coming back for more tales of my crazy life I’ve not treated you to any stories about my magical healing vagina for quite some time. Well I’ve got a treat in store for you guys so sit down get comfy and be prepared to laugh cry and cringe all together as I share my story of a situation that I found myself in yesterday!!

So for those of you who don’t know basically after you’ve had a baby your fanny is stretched to shit and your lucky if your guts don’t spill out everytime you bend over. I can see you at the back cringing as you read this but you all know me by now I don’t sugar coat anything! It really is such a magical time! So not only is your usually tight vagina now flapping in the wind your bladder decideds it’s feeling left out and must join your other bodily functions and really fuck up your day on a daily basis.

Now they tell you in the hospital to do pelvic floor excersises for a good reason. A very good reason in fact shall I tell you what it is? SO YOU DONT PISS YOURSELF! And boy don’t you know it if you’ve been slacking on the old pelvic excersises.

For those of you who know me know that I don’t hold back on much so here’s my story of the “sneeze wee”

One upon a time I got pregnant had a baby and ruined my fanny. Thinking I knew better than the doctors advice I accidentally on purpose “forgot” to do my pelvic floor excersises. (Don’t do the same as me ladies I beg of you) many many months after ripping my vagina from ear to ear I experienced what only can be described as a sneeze wee! And as you can expect it does exactly what it says on the tin!

There I am at work bending down in the most vubarable position ever to experience what can only be described as the biggest fucking sneeze I’ve ever done in my entire life, knelt down with no give in my bladder what so ever… AHH CHOO!!

Spillage in aisle 3!! For a brief moment I thought I’d sneezed so hard I’d gone to heaven, only to be brought back down to earth with an almighty bang and huge wet patch in my underpants!! oh my fucking god I’ve actually just pissed myself, not only have I just pissed myself but I’ve done it AT WORK where I have no spare clothes or anywhere to hide my wet sorry ass until I could dry off. Oh god how the mighty have fallen. Running to the toilet to asses the situation and see how bad the damage was I could have cried. Pacing in the toilet trying to think what the fuck am I going to do? Can I sneak my pants in the tumble dryer? Can I just bin them and go commando and hope nobody sees my ass through the god awful transparent black leggings I decided to wear this morning ?!

What else could I do but carry on like I hadn’t just pissed my pants in the middle of a shift? and hope to god they dry off naturally and I don’t walk around smelling like a tramps chip paper. Never did I see the day where my 31 year old self would be hiding in the ladies loo crying over a pair of wet knickers. Needless to say I had no choice but to carry on like nothing had happend and run home at my given opportunity to change my pissy pants and forget this situation ever happend.

So in summery, pelvic floor excersises are literary a life and death situation don’t forget to do them!! If there’s a lesson to be learnt after all this id say NEVER bend down and sneeze at the same time because that’s just asking for trouble! And invest in some decent leggings not the cheap primark shite I wore on this fateful day.

Z

Xxx