Tag Archives: Real Mum

National Infertility Awareness Week – secondary infertility, Karen’s story – part 1

NIAWLOGOplus

Today marks the start of the first National Infertility Awareness Week, launched by Infertility Network UK in conjunction with their Talking About Trying campaign. It’s a week long campaign (28th November – 3rd November 2013) to raise awareness of infertility.

Having several friends who have suffered with infertility I wanted to help spread the word about this campaign to help other people going through it and let them know that they’re not alone. In particular, secondary infertility.

It’s something you don’t really think about. Or I hadn’t anyway. You have one child, or even two, therefore you automatically think it’s going to be plain sailing with the next. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. I asked my good friend Karen, from ‘365 Pearls of Wisdom‘, to share her experience with you.

Both Karen and I hope that it helps others experiencing the same things as Karen and also people that know someone experiencing infertility. Sometimes it can be hard to know what to say. Sometimes, it’s best not to say anything at all. Over to you Karen…

Photo for Gemma

In September of 2010 I had my first baby, it took us 4 months to get pregnant. At the time I thought how lucky we were to fall so quickly, I figured it would have been even quicker if I hadn’t waited so long to come off contraception. In hindsight I look back now and realise it really was pure luck, in fact it now seems like a miracle.

I remember whilst I was pregnant my husband suggesting we try right away for another, get the whole new baby, nappies feeding and sleepless nights over and done with. My reaction to this was “No way!” I wanted my body back for a while and to just enjoy this baby we already had coming. But, shortly after she was born I was actually ready to start again, I loved our family and wanted a sibling for her sooner than I thought I would. So when she was 6 months old we started trying, with much excitement and anticipation, fantasising about being a family of four.

Two months ago my daughter turned 3, almost three years after we started trying we are still a family of 3 and I haven’t fallen pregnant with my second child. Well, actually I did fall pregnant last Christmas but the pregnancy didn’t develop properly and was eventually treated as a missed miscarriage at 11 weeks.

I am actually living with a diagnosis of secondary infertility, something most people I know don’t even know exists. Last year I had some fertility tests done, my daughter was born by emergency C-section and so the fertility specialist agreed to do a laparoscopy and dye procedure on me. This meant going in through my belly button and existing C-section scar and injecting dye into my ovaries and checking to make sure nothing had been stuck together or effected by scarring. The procedure showed that the dye only went through my left tube and not my right, so we know now that the right side doesn’t work properly, halving my chances of falling pregnant. A later laparoscopy by a different doctor, earlier this year when investigating problems with my pregnancy, showed this is because of scar tissue built up around the right tube, no one knows why it’s there or how long it has been there, possibly a complication from the C-section.

At this point you may be wondering  what support and treatment I’m getting from the fertility specialist at my local hospital, well the answer is nothing… When I visited for my follow up appointment  last year after my initial laparoscopy she told me what was wrong and then very flippantly said “Oh you’ll get pregnant, eventually..” And that was that, I was waved off out of the clinic. That was very distressing for me, I knew why I wasn’t getting any more help or support. Because I have secondary infertility and our local PCT will only spend their budgets on couples with primary infertility. Plus we don’t have ANY infertility support or counselling in our area for ANYONE suffering with infertility problems.

So here I am, lost, isolated and feeling very alone in my journey. Of course I get a lot of well meaning people imparting their wisdom and advice on to me, I regularly get…

“Oh you’ll get pregnant again!”

“If you just stop trying it will happen!”

“You’re too stressed out about it, you need to relax!”

“Why don’t you just dress up in sexy underwear, get drunk and just enjoy it!”

“You should try going on holiday, you’ll fall pregnant then!”

“Why don’t you just enjoy the child you already have?!”

Seriously, if I had a pound for every time someone said this to me I’d be well on my way to affording a round of IVF! I know people mean well, I know that people don’t really understand what we are going through and I know people are trying to “help” but believe me and others who suffer too will tell you how unhelpful this is!

I have tried EVERYTHING I possibly can, that I can actually do myself, we don’t actually have any money to pay for any private fertility that is medical based so unless we win the lottery that is not an option for us. I wish it was as simple as all these people make out for it to be but infertility is complex, physically, emotionally and mentally and it’s a completely different experience for everyone who has the displeasure of experiencing it, on how they feel and what works for them.

So if I can leave you with a few things at the end of my story it is this, if you know someone who has infertility issues,  try not to give them advice, wisdom or guidance, instead try asking them how they are doing or how they are feeling, try listening to their story instead of trying to tell them what they should be doing instead remember; although they may not show it other people’s pregnancies and babies can be difficult for them, you don’t always have to come up with the right thing to say, just a little acknowledgement helps, even if it’s just a hug, hugs are great, I wished more people hugged me instead of dismissing my worries and anxieties about falling pregnant again. Most of all don’t take theirs, yours or anyone else’s fertility for granted because none of us know how it really is until we are actually living it.

For me the future is unclear, although we hope and dream of another baby, there is no guarantee one will come along and this can be a difficult fact to face. In the summer it seemed like everyone we knew was announcing pregnancies around us. In fact, I have watched many people I know who have had their first babies after my first, go on to have second and thirds since and I was feeling a lot of disappear and abandonment. This is when I decided to take some action, try something I hadn’t before.

I knew of a holistic fertility specialist who had done hypnobirthing with me when I was pregnant with my daughter and she ran her own clinic in another town about an hour down the road. I have now been having treatment with her for the last three months and I am feeling more hopeful now that my baby may come along soon and now my quest is to try to live life as a survivor of infertility, not a victim. Some days it’s hard, some days it’s painful and I feel like a total failure but I push on, dreaming of my baby, willing it in to my arms and in to my family.

Thank you so much for sharing your story with us Karen. I’m so looking forward to reading the second part and to find out what steps you’ve been taking to help realise your dream of a second child. My heart goes out to you.

Later in the week we will also hear from Lucy, Karen’s holistic fertility specialist. I am so excited to share her post with you.

If you are experiencing secondary infertility, please feel free to comment below or email me and I’ll pass any messages on to Karen. Likewise, you can speak directly to Karen on Twitter @KarenCsWorld

Mummy Monday – real Mum Hannah @theREALjeevesy

Good morning! Well, I am super chuffed to have yet another fabulous blogger featuring on my very own blog. The lovely Hannah from ‘Make, Do and Push‘ has answered some questions for you about Motherhood. Go have a read, and just look at this beautiful photo…

Hannah and Busby

Getting to know you

Name: Hannah

Twitter name: @theREALjeevesy

Blog: www.makedoandpush.co.uk

Occupation: When I’m not on maternity leave I work in public sector management (for my sins). However, I’ve used my maternity leave wisely and have obtained some regular freelance writing, which is what I actually want to do! So fingers crossed for a career change in the coming months.

Mummy to: Busby, my almost 9 month old daughter.

What’s your wardrobe must have: A dress that makes you feel fab!

What’s your perfect way to relax: A massage and facial! Yum! Sadly, I don’t manage this as often as I used to pre-baby!

Currently reading/watching/listening: Reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover as it’s the theme for our wedding… and watching New Girl – oh lordy, I’ve only just discovered it and LOVE it!!

Proudest moment of your life: Bringing Busby into the world! Such an obvious answer, but it’s the truth.

Favourite quote: “…so many words because I can’t touch you. If I could sleep with my arms round you, the ink could stay in the bottle…” Lady Chatterley’s Lover, DH Lawrence

Your ‘swear by’ product: Vaseline with Aloe vera – a boring answer, but I use this every day.

Being a Mum

What do you love most about being a Mummy: Cuddles! I love it when Busby falls asleep on me – she looks so peaceful and is so snuggly!!

In 5 words describe your labour story: Frustrating, painful, scary, exhausting, empowering.

What essential items should be taken into the labour room:

1. Lots to drinks for afterwards – I didn’t want anything during labour, but afterwards it was all about the sugary drinks and copious amounts of water.

2. Big pants that you don’t mind throwing away – I didn’t want to wear paper pants, so bought a pack of super comfy M&S pants that were 2 sizes too big. They were perfect postpartum!

Top tips for getting through the first weeks with a new baby: Expect to feel utterly rubbish; you will have amazing moments, but there are times like day 3 when your milk comes in where you feel like the world is about to end. Also, get in as many newborn cuddles as possible – they only stay that small for so long. Waah!

Funny things she does: Busby finds it hilarious when we yawn… and she also tries to share her food with us, which is very funny! Rusk to the eye!

Most embarrassing moment since becoming a Mum: Half asleep on the bus I stood up to press the bell, and went to sit back down (forgetting I’d been sitting with the pram in the foldable seats)… the seat had folded back up and I fell right on my bum. The bus went silent and for some reason I apologised to the bus… No idea why. Luckily the next stop was ours!

The one product you couldn’t live without now you’re a Mum: Cake? Gin? Um… For Busby it would have to be teething granules. They have been a life saver during teething! For me it’s my Barry M Kohl Eye Pencil – it makes me look alive, even when I feel dreadful!

How do you keep Busby entertained: Lots of singing and dancing! Music is such a big part of my life and I’d love Busby to have the same passion for it.

How did you decide on her name: Busby’s real name was our favourite girls name from the start, it then got put to one side whilst Matilda ruled… and then she came out! She didn’t look like a Matilda, so Busby it was. We then found out that my Grandpas Mother was called Busby, so that made it all the more special!

Where do you shop for her clothes: H&M Kids is one of my favourites; very reasonably priced and lots of fun colours. I also love Baby Gap!

Thank you so much Hannah. Loved having you on here. Your embarrassing moment really did make me chuckle. You’re so sweet to apologise to the bus. 😉 You can check out Hannah’s blog ‘here‘ and keep up to date with her wedding plans and her beautiful girl.

If you’d like to be a Mummy Monday, I’d love to hear from you. I’m always looking for lovely Mama’s to share their different parenting methods, lessons and tips. Just email me at gemmaguscott[at]gmail.com and I’ll send over the questions. Go on, it’ll only take a few minutes. 😉 xx

MUMMY MONDAY: REAL MUM ADELE @adelelbamber

Good morning! A warm welcome to todays Mummy Monday, Adele. You can find out all about Adele and her gorgeous little girl below. Enjoy! xx

ADELE m2m

BEING YOU

NAME

Adele Bamber

TWITTER Name

@adelelbamber

OCCUPATION

Primary school teacher

MUMMY TO

Mum to Elsa Loula Long Legs

FAVOURITE OUTFIT

A dress with pockets

PROUDEST MOMENT

Being assessed as an Advanced Skills Teacher
“Something profound” by someone important.

YOUR ‘SWEAR BY’ PRODUCT

Nivea creme moisturiser

BEING A MUM

WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT BEING A MUMMY

The shouts of “mummy” and rattling of the stair gate while I’m on the toilet

WHAT COULD YOU DO WITHOUT

Breastfeeding information being shoved down my throat

FUNNY THINGS YOUR KIDS SAY

Boobies instead of blueberries

WORDS OF WISDOM FOR OTHER MUMS

No words of wisdom…do what you want but be nice along the way

DESCRIVE YOUR LABOUR IN 5 WORDS

Dural tap = private room, lush.

ESSENTIAL ITEMS FOR THE LABOUR ROOM

Epidural kit

TOP TIPS FOR THOSE FIRST FEW WEEKS

Know that the 1st 8 weeks are hell. It gets better. Turn your phone off, bolt the door and sleep. Milk is milk whether from breast or bottle. It feeds your child. Embrace it. Feel sorry for the people who make you feel bad. (I need to heed my own advice on this one)

MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENT SINCE BECOMING A MUM

Trampolining. Enough said.

PRODUCT YOU COULDN’T LIVE WITHOUT NOW YOU’RE A MUM

Nappies

SOMETHING YOU DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT YOURSELF BEFORE BECOMING A MUM

I’m a risk taker

HOW DO YOU KEEP YOUR CHILDREN ENTERTAINED

A million toys.

WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU’D KNOWN BEFORE HAVING KIDS

Pelvic floor exercises ARE important

IF YOU WERE A SUPERHERO, WHAT WOULD YOUR POWER BE

Bagpacker Woman – Never knowingly without essential items. Today I had no sun cream or nappies. It was hot. She *needed* a nappy.

YOUR FAVOURITE LOCAL SUPPLIER

Paul’s Farm shop, Leyland, Lancashire. Always turn a blind eye to the munching of stolen veg. Today was a raw parsnip.

Thank you so much Adele. I really enjoyed reading these. xx

MUMMY MONDAY (on Saturday!): REAL MUM AIMEE @aimeehorton

OK, I know it’s Saturday. But this weeks #MummyMonday had to be posted today. Why? Because it’s World Gin Day and that goes hand in hand with this real Mum…

I am so excited to welcome the very lovely Aimee to #MummyMonday this week. Author of ‘Survival of the Ginnest‘ and ‘Pass the Gin‘ blog, Mama to two gorgeous boys, and all round funny lady. Now can you see why it had to be posted today?

Over to you Aimee.

Aimee Horton

Getting to know you

Name: Aimee

Twitter name: @AimeeHorton

Occupation: Author and Blogger

Mummy to: The Beast and The Chunky Monkey

Favourite outfit: Jeans!

Currently watching: 24 (yes I know I’m useless and years behind!)

Currently reading: Just finished The Drowning of Arthur Braxton and have moved onto The Language of Spells

Proudest moment in your life: Having my boys narrowly beats publishing my first book.

Favourite quote: Fashion wasn’t what you wore someplace anymore; it was the whole reason for going

Your ‘swear by’ product: Benefit PlayStick!

Being a Mum

What do you love most about being a Mummy: The things they say and watching them grow into little people.

What could you do without: The inability for them to STOP TALKING

Funny things your kids say: Favourite quote from holiday in Menorca “Mummy, if I eat Spanish cake will I be able to speak Spanish?”

Words of wisdom for other Mummies: GO WITH YOUR GUT!

What 5 words best describe your labour story: Planned, Terrifying, Relief, Thank You.

What essential items should be taken into the labour room: As I had to have c-sections with both boys I just had my husband (and a tin of Gin in my bag for later!)

Top tips for getting through the first weeks with a new baby: Limit your visitors, don’t feel guilted into letting everyone come all at once!

Most embarrassing moment since becoming a Mum: There are too many to say, but it probably involves me flashing either my pants or my bra.

The one product you couldn’t live without now you’re a Mum: Chocolate Buttons

Something you didn’t know about yourself before becoming a Mum: I need silence!

How do you keep your children entertained: If all else fails we dance and sing!

What do you wish you’d known before having kids: That there is no point trying to do everything, you’ll burn out

If you were a superhero, what would your power be: To mute children for 20 minutes at a time!

Your favourite local supplier: We have a fantastic butchers just around the corner to me, they do the most amazing BBQ ribs and Lincolnshire sausages. That and ForEvaDesigns.co.uk their personalized products are amazing!

And because it is ‘World Gin Day’, what’s your favourite gin cocktail: it’s gotta be a Tom Collins!

Thank you so much Aimee. I loved reading your answers. Still laughing at the Spanish cake. Love how their minds work. I hope you’re taking full advantage of World Gin Day. Enjoy! xx

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