Endocrines, cups of tea and swaddling – the year of the baby
Endocrines are on the increase everywhere we look… Sisters, brothers, friends and cousins, all of them having babies – this means that we are officially in the year of the baby (well it means that in our household anyway). So, having thought that we were quite up to date on most things relating to childbirth (we have had 2 in the last 8 years after all), we find that we are already hopelessly outmoded.
Words keep being bandied around that we have no idea about. What is a swaddling blanket for example? I had to google it, and it turns out that you get a special bit of material to wrap up your little one to look like the baby Jesus and don’t just use the most sick-free blanket you can find in a sort of sleep-deprived, semi conscious state when you are desperate for them to be quiet.
Also new to me are glow in the dark dummies (awesome idea, I really wish we’d had one of those, would have saved endless groping under the cot at 3am in the dark); musical potties with built in toilet roll holders (I shit you not aha, excuse the pun); the breastfeeding chart which measures how long you’ve been feeding and awards you accordingly (I’d have been golden boobs, in case you were wondering…) and all sorts of hi-tech smart baby devices including a baby-gro that measures temperature when your little one is sleeping (which I would have broken/lost within 10 minutes).
Good job our baby days are done.
However, not everyone is as jurassic as us. Thank God. My brother recently came to stay and is reading a book called ‘Men, Love and Birth’ by a midwife called Neil Harris. It’s a kind of tome for the modern man wanting to tune in to his partner and be loving and supportive. All well and good so far. He reads us out his favourite bit: Masculine and feminine energy (for want of a better word; my girlfriend calls me a spiritual wanker when I use words like energy, awareness and grounded – I say it’s difficult finding words that fit the experience I am attempting to communicate)… Wow! (To be fair, Neil also has lots of other very interesting and useful stuff to say that isn’t in ‘spiritual wanker’ language).
I ask my husband to offer words of wisdom to my brother about what to do when your partner is in labour and these are his 3 golden rules (hmmm):
- Do what you are told by your partner
- Do what you are told by the midwife
- Keep your Mother (in law) up to date with progress or she (or both) will turn up at the hospital
And then my advice throughout pregnancy, after birth and beyond: just keep making cups of tea, all the time. Don’t ask, just make them. And cake is good too. With fruit works best as it is ‘healthy’. Or order fruity chocolate brownies from Say it with Brownies. Mmmmmmm, oops, sorry, got cake distracted. What was this post about? Cake? Babies? Oh well, aren’t they mutually dependent?