Things not to say to a new mum

Sonny Jim, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydidUK

Newborn days: With my Sonny Jim

FRIENDS of ours have just had twin girls and seeing the pair of them, daughters in arms, and joy positively emanating out of photos, really took me back to Sonny Jim’s newborn days.

In some ways (clichéd as it sounds) it seems forever ago and yet I can’t believe that I have an almost two-year-old.

It got me thinking how it’s really easy to say the wrong thing to a new mum. When you’ve just had a baby, especially your first, the most insignificant observation can seem like a criticism. You’re pretty emotional, you’re SO tired and you’ve, quite frankly, NO idea what you’re doing. So, here’s my list of things you totally should not say to any new mamas in your life…

    • Is he a good baby?
      Well, he killed the cat last night… seriously what does this even mean? They all cry, poo, drink milk and sleep. Some more than others. There are no bad babies.
    • Are you feeding him?
      No, he’s living off air. What this is actually asking, is are you breastfeeding? And, honestly, why do you need to know? I desperately wanted to breastfeed Sonny Jim and he absolutely couldn’t do it. It was a bit rubbish.

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In praise of NCT

NCT babies, Sonny Jim

Little buddies: Sonny Jim (asleep) with four of his five NCT pals (aged about 3-months)

A year ago today I was eight months pregnant and dragging the husband along to the first of four antenatal NCT (National Childbirth Trust) classes.

He was not exactly up for it. For starters, he was missing West Ham play. And he couldn’t understand why we needed to sit in a room with five other couples for SIX HOURS (we did break for lunch in the middle) on a Sunday to talk about how our baby was going to be born. And then go to another three sessions in the weeks that followed.

We’d also had to pay more than £200 for the privilege of the experience. Money which could have been spent on clothes for the baby. Or nappies. Or something else that seemed infinitely more practical than chatting.

But anyway.

Off we went to our NCT Signature Antenatal course (held in a side room at David Lloyd in Southend.) And a year on I can happily say it was one of the best pre-Sonny Jim decisions we made. Continue reading

FREE! Bag yourself a year’s free OnlineGym4me membership – worth £58.80

I don’t know about you, but what with having had a baby recently vacate my being – and then deprive me of quite a lot of sleep –  I’ve found working out hasn’t *exactly* been top of my to do list.

By that, I mean I have yet (Sonny Jim is now 9 months old) to actually get to the gym.

In fairness, I wasn’t a real gym bod before. Yoga once or twice a week, was about as far as things went for me.

But this (almost a year long. Shh) malaise cannot continue.

So.

I’ve teamed up with OnlineGym4me and tried their New Mommy, Fit Body Online Workout Program. Which can be done at home. In 15 minutes. Continue reading

Hero places (and people) for new mums

Katy Pearson and Sonny

Getting out and about with Sonny

Leaving the house with your new little one can be epically daunting (I’m sure it’ll wear off eventually, but still) and little things that people and places do – or don’t do – can be the difference between a great day for you and bubba and a I-want-to-cry-I’m-so-useless day (that’s for you – not the baby, they cry however great their day has been.) There should a baby friendly sticker scheme or something.

Until then though, having now had a few weeks of venturing out with Sonny in tow, here’s my – and my NCT mummy chums’ – hero places (and people) for new mums in Leigh-on-Sea (and nearby.) Continue reading

Today I’m trying… baby first aid with St John’s Ambulance

“Learning baby CPR is like having car insurance – you hope you never need it, but if you do need it you’re ever so grateful you have it.”

Katy Pearson pregnant - picture by Sarah Briggs

Baby first aid: Putting this worried mama-to-be’s mind slightly more at ease (PHOTO BY SARAH BRIGGS)

These are the opening words said in my three-hour baby first aid class with St John’s Ambulance.

The sessions, which are held all over Essex, cover everything from the correct recovery position for babies (cradled in your arms with their head tilted downwards – not on the floor on their side like adults), CPR and choking to dealing with fevers, croup and burns.

At eight-months pregnant with my first child, and by nature something of a worrier, I was prompted to take the class after the UK’s leading first aid charity aired its new Nursery Rhymes Inc advert – in which a short video featuring the stars of Nursery Rhymes Inc shows how to do baby CPR.

The campaign was launched after parents told the charity that their baby not breathing was the first aid emergency they feared the most, yet only one in four knew what to do.

I was soon to be one of them. And the thought of being clueless – or doing the wrong thing – should I ever find myself in that nightmare situation, quite frankly terrified me. Continue reading