Tag Archives: motherhood

The perfect Bluetooth speaker is here….

My kids love music and watching movies on our tablets and phones. I have been on the hunt for a decent Bluetooth speaker for awhile now, after purchasing one that was terrible quality, with no battery life that eventually broke after just a couple of uses I discovered the Mini LifeJacket III  from Altec Lansing.

This little speaker is fantastic and so durable (very important with little sticky hands around). We have used it a lot;  out on our deck, at the park, the lake and when we have gone on picnics.  The 16 hour battery life is fantastic and it will hold up against the elements. The Mini LifeJacket III is even buoyant so if you are doing a spot of fishing  or hanging out at the kiddie pool and it gets dropped in the water it will float.   The sound quality is really good and if your phone rings the speaker will still work so you don’t miss any calls.

You can pick up one of these beauties at Ananconda,  The Good Guys or Target.

Check us out having a picnic at the Redwood Forest in Warburton (Melbourne, AU). We took our Mini LifeJacket III with us and had some tunes pumping while we relaxed in the forest. Such great place to visit with kids, have a walk and a picnic. Perfect!!! 

Rachelle xx

 

 

 

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Give it time

When you are pregnant all the books, websites and other mums tell you about the overwhelming feelings of love you will have for your child from the second they are placed in your arms. Some women gush about how they love pregnancy and the feeling of growing a life inside of them.

It’s no secret.  I didn’t enjoy pregnancy, not for one second. All the sweating, nausea, hunger and stretching of everything (mainly my pants and bras) just didn’t appeal to me. Every now and then I enjoyed the little kicks but 90% of the time I felt like an alien had taken over my body.

My son Hudson was born six weeks early, saying this came as a surprise is an understatement. When I heard my baby boy cry for the first time I was so happy. I was overcome with emotion. Yet, I wouldn’t describe it as it says in all the books. Love wasn’t gushing out of me like an overflowing sink.  I had mixed emotions, he was taken to the special care nursery straight away. I was excited, upset, confused and 100% scared out of my mind. 

Then, it came time for Hudson to come home.  I was still so frighted,  he was tiny and had reflux so he cried A LOT. I was a new mum with no idea and when my husband returned to work I felt very alone. It was like being given a new toy with no instructions. I loved my baby but was waiting for this warm fuzzy, fluffy feeling that I had heard about? Why wasn’t I gushing love from my pores? Glowing? Declaring my love for my child like all these other women?  What was wrong with me?

Looking back on this time, I realise there was nothing wrong with me. I was adjusting to a massive change in my life. I had a rough start, difficult baby,  was incredibly sleep deprived and frankly it’s just not my personality.  I love both of my children more than anything in this world. I would walk accross hot coal to protect them,  jump to their defense and claw your eyes out if you hurt them. However,  this feeling has developed over time. I feel like I have got to know them and like any new experience it’s daunting at first.

I tell all my friends and any first time mothers not to expect these amazing, overwhelming warm feelings of love straight away as it’s not always the case. It doesn’t mean you’re a bad mother, it doesn’t mean you don’t love your children.  It just takes a little time to bond, confidence, some sleep and everything gets better. Everyone’s experience of motherhood is different, dont ever feel bad for being honest and admitting your true feelings just because they are different from others or from what books describe.  You are  a good mother!

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Rachelle xx

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Guest blog – It wasn’t love at first sight for everyone

When I fell pregnant with my second baby I was over the moon as my fertility specialist said it was likely the embryo wouldn’t take because it was the first frozen transfer and the success rates weren’t great. But during the two week wait; and some of us know how painful and anxiety driven that two week wait is, I experienced some pregnancy symptoms. I was feeling nauseous, I had tightness and was tired; I just felt pregnant. I was so tempted to take a pregnancy test but didn’t want to incase the results were negative and we would be heartbroken more than once. We waited and received the phone call from my doctor (with my clinic, I knew that an earlier phone call in the afternoon was a good one as they ring all the successful pregnancies first and leave the difficult phone calls for later on – I have experienced those phone calls too). The news was good. My husband and I were so happy. Thrilled. My doctor also couldn’t believe it given the success rates of frozen embryos. He was so happy for us.

My pregnancy went along pretty well. I had a couple of hiccups with bleeding and in hospital a couple of times on short-stay bed rest but absolutely nothing major like some women go through. I was really excited moving through the pregnancy but also wondered how my life would change with two babies and not just parenting my little Matilda. Matilda would be just over 18 months when the baby arrived and I was a little concerned about how I would cope considering I had a little PND after Matilda was born. I didn’t want to go down that path again and I was adamant about changing my mindset and the words I spoke about how I was going to cope and for me, I think that really helped alleviate some self-doubt.

The day arrived when Master Charlie came into our lives. He was the spitting image of his dad and was just delightful. My family visited and everyone was really happy about meeting Charlie and then Jason bought Matilda in. Being 18 months of age and not really understanding what had just happened she wasn’t so happy about Charlie arriving. She wasn’t loving, she pushed him away, she kept saying “no” and I thought oh my goodness, what have we done? Maybe we should have waited a bit, but in the infertility world, your choices of when you want to have a baby are pretty slim. My initial reaction when we first discovered what our infertility issues were, was, lets get things moving along and get this show on the road as time was not on our side.

The jump from one to two kids was big, for me. Even though I knew what to expect second time around, it was hard finding balance in caring for a newborn and a toddler. Thankfully Charlie was a great newborn; my anxiety was around giving time to Matilda and not getting frustrated with her little tantrums and outbursts knowing that all she really wanted was her mum. It probably took Matilda a couple of months for her to really show some affection towards her little brother. I noticed it once when I picked her up from childcare and the staff were looking at little Charlie and she was saying “my brother” and being super protective.

Jason and I had to be really conscious of spending one on one time with Matilda. He had already started taking Matilda out on breakfast dates when I was pregnant and that increased once Charlie had arrived to every Saturday. Daddy daughter dates were just the best. She loved it and was much happier when she came home and was more settled. Charlie and I joined the breakfast dates once Matilda paid her brother some more attention and we could both spend time with her.

Whilst the first few months were tough having a baby second time around was much easier than having my first as I knew what to expect for most of the part and making sure I got enough sleep really helped. Jason was such a great support and helped with night feeds so that I could get uninterrupted sleep until the 4am feed. Looking back now I wouldn’t change our decision to get the ball rolling with our IVF journey and Matilda and Charlie are great buddies now and play so well together. I know there will be fights and arguing between them as they grow but I really hope and pray they will be the best of friends and support and love each other through life’s challenges. So it wasn’t love at first sight for Miss M but now she is one protective sister and wants everyone to know that Charlie is her little brother.

Sass.xo

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el8te Skincare Q&A

I recently had the opportunity to try the el8te skin care range. el8te is a luxurious natural skincare brand that offers a high quality product at an affordable price.

Founded by Gen Reid, Jenny Price and Sally Glover, el8te can be used by all ages and skin types. It’s Australian made and free from any nasty chemicals. Making it ideal for sensitive skin. I had a chance to ask the founders of el8te some questions.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions about your amazing product range, tell me a little bit about why this came about and what the inspiration for the brand is

We really wanted to create a skincare brand that was truly and genuinely free of nasty chemicals and which incorporated goat milk. Goat milk has incredible healing benefit and is therefore perfect for sensitive skin which is so prevalent these days.

What sets el8te products apart from the rest? 

Most goat milk ranges use processed and powdered goat milk whereas el8te uses only fresh Australian goat milk. Lots of goat milk product on the market is pitched at a supermarket level but we really wanted to open up this space and develop an attractive and elevated brand that could be used by the whole family.

I have young children, some products I have used in the past have caused rashes and dry out their sensitive skin. Tell me a little bit about your Goat’s milk baby range? 

Our babies are so precious and it’s distressing to see the ingredients in some products pitched at babies. We use no nasty chemicals or artificial fragrances so our goat milk range is super safe for gentle and sensitive skin. Our baby range is not only safe for baby’s skin but it has real healing benefits for rashes and irritation that they can be so susceptible to.  

Where do you source the ingredients for the el8te skin care range? 

All the ingredients used are sourced in Australia.

I see you use activated charcoal in some of your products. What are the benefits of this? 

Activated charcoal has been used for millennium– it absorbs deep into the pores to draw out dirt & oil making it perfect for blemished and acne prone skin. Our hand and body wash is scented with pure spearmint oil and it’s one of my favourite products in the el8te range.

Where can I buy el8te? 

You can buy el8te online at www.el8teaustralia.com

What a delightful gift for any new bub (or mum).
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Thank you

Rachelle xx

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Silent reflux = screaming baby

As I have mentioned before my son Hudson was born six weeks early.  Since his sucking reflex wasn’t developed he had a feeding tube when  he was in the special care nursery.

A few weeks after he was born he came home from the hospital and was breastfed and bottle fed as he got quite tired from breastfeeding alone.  After about a week at home we noticed he was crying a lot. Especially after feeds. I mentioned it to my health nurse, she asked if her was vomiting (he wasn’t) she said it was normal newborn  behaviour and I didn’t think much of it.

That was until my darling newborn  began to scream all day and all night.  Going anywhere in the car was like a screaming marathon and I was at my wits end. I mentioned it to people and everyone said ‘babies cry you know’, ‘he is a newborn’. I think they assumed I was over exaggerating, just a new mum who was freaking out when my baby cried or I was unable to settle my child. The third statement was true. Neither  myself or my husband could settle Hudson and this screaming went on for a few weeks as we had no idea what was wrong. Looking back now I have had a second baby, it was clear something was wrong. But as new, very sleep deprived parents and no normal signs of reflux (projectile vomiting etc). We just thought we had a difficult baby and I thought I wasn’t cut out for the whole motherhood gig. One of the most hurtful things that was said to me when I was describing that I was unable to settle Hudson to another mother and she said ‘ohhh really, well I’m sure I could settle him’. I felt helpless, I was loosing my mind and the constant screaming was awful.  We tried a number of different settling techniques, placing the cot on an angle, colic remedy and nothing worked.  He was gaining weight and still no projectile vomitting so my health nurse said there was no worry. She suggested he may have had days and nights confused?? If that was the case he never thought it was night time!

One day I was on the phone to my mum and she could  hear Hudson screaming  his lungs out. She said it definitely  sounded like a pain cry and I should go to the  doctor.  That evening Hudson  was still going at 11pm, we packed up and went straight to the Children’s Hospital. A doctor took one look at him crying, red in the face, wriggling around and said it was silent reflux (basically severe heartburn). He didn’t vomit but the acid was causing incredible pain.  That week we were referred to a pediatrician and he was put on Losec and thickened formula. It took a few days to start working but the difference in Hudson was amazing. The crying stopped and for the first time since he was home we slept for longer than half an hour straight. The dosage was increased as he gained weight, there wasn’t any further reflux problems and we weaned him off Losec just before his first birthday.

Apparently reflux is common with prem babies because of the feeding tube, no one had mentioned this and I had never even heard of ‘silent reflux’. Let me tell you, it was the opposite of silent, they need to rethink the name.

From the start my instinct told me something was wrong. Yet, I doubted  myself. Never doubt, if you think  something is wrong, follow it up. Get a second opinion and never let anyone put you down for doing it. If I didn’t  listen to everyone just making me feel I was a silly new mum I could have got Hudson help earlier and saved a lot of sleepless nights and heartache.

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Hudson with his feeding tube. Getting cuddles from dad.

Rachelle xx

 

** As featured on www.mytinywardrobe.com.au ** 

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The real mummy moments

Prior to Hudson I had never changed a nappy, I would gag at the site or smell of vomit and to be honest I was a little worried about how I would cope with motherhood. Now, I am a seasoned pro and can change a nappy with my eyes closed while singing ‘Old Mc Donald’

I have mothehood days where I feel like Martha Stewart. Perfect family, Instagram filtered days. The problem with these days, is that they’re few and far between. Most days are just average parenting days full of highs, lows and a mixture of laughter and tantrums…..then there are the dark moments.   You feel like you have run a marathon with two small people hanging off you, everything is sticky and you probaby smell of poop or vomit.

These are the moments I need to discuss. I have to get them off my chest. I’m sure all mother’s and father’s have experienced something similar.  Some of my highlights are now particularly funny (mostly gross but also funny). At the time of some of these events I was probably on the verge of tears.  It’s important to look back now and laugh, I survived and my children are happy. 

Mark of the year – I have ran accross a room to catch both poop and/or vomit rather than let it fall on clothing, the couch or the floor. Literally put my hands out to grab it like it’s the golden snitch in a quiddich match, anything to save an outfit or a little bit of extra carpet cleaning.

Sneaky tidy up –  I have wiped baby chuck off clothing and scampered off to work like nothing is wrong. Sometimes when both children are already strapped in the car and you see a milk mark on your jacket it’s just too late and too much effort to go home and get changed.

MacGyver – my husband had just returned to work after I had Scarlett. I discovered I was completely out of breastpads. I had to go to the supermarket and get more but couldn’t risk springing a leak in aisle 5. I cut a maternity pad in half and used that. Stuck in my bra and all,  worked like a charm.

Boom! – Poop and or vomit has been scrubbed off our couch, carpet, blinds…..how on earth do they manage shoot it accross the room. The sheer force (even from a newborn) is completely amazing and a big surprise if you’re not ready for it.

Boom…headshot!!– My daughter, beautiful baby girl shot a bit of poop into my mouth. Yep, that’s correct…… I was changing a nappy when she was a newborn. Bent down as I was singing/chatting to her and ka boom, right in the kisser.

Thanks but no thanks – Hudson will often say ‘mummy this is for you’ as he sweetly hands me a boogie?  We’re slowly learning that they go in a tissue.

Flush first – Since Hudson has been toilet trained he has also learnt about using a toilet brush to tidy any marks on the bowl. Great! I thought I was winning at motherhood teaching him how to clean up after himself. However, we now pretty much argue daily as he wants to use the brush to clean the toilet prior to flushing the poop down, clearly that lesson has backfired on me.

Code brown – most parents have had this moment. Your little one is happily playing in the bath one minute and the next everything changes. In our house one parent is normally yelling ‘code brown’  getting the child or children from the bath while the other fishes for the floating culprit and proceeds to disinfect or bin the bath toys.

It’s true what they say, it really is different when it’s your own children.  All of these moments are pretty gross, but they are honest and in reality just another little bump in the road. It goes to show, motherhood really changes a person, I’m a perfect example.

Rachelle xx

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Guest Blog – Does the pregnancy glow wear off?

Does the pregnancy glow wear off? Is it something that comes and goes with my mood swings? A glow of fire out of my nostrils, when I slice the ham to thick or realising I’m crying for no good reason for the 3rd time in one day.

Where is the glow in my pimples, the ones I only ever get when I’m pregnant. My constant oily hair, or nails which grow as you cut them.

Maybe it’s the sun glistening off my hairy legs, I don’t know because I can’t even see my toes let alone my legs, or bend down to shave them.

“Oh it’s such a magical feeling” 

Well yes sometimes I can lay there and admire the small twitches and movements. But this getting kicked in the ribs and playing hop skip and jump on my bladder isn’t my idea of magic.

“Wow still 9 more weeks? Your about to explode” Pregnancy glow

Thanks, not only do I feel like a beached whale, you just confirmed it for me.

“Your going to have your hands full aren’t you”

Honestly, it might just be my hormones but I could punch you right now. How dare you doubt my abilities, I’m going to fucking ace this two kid thing. Yes my toddler will most likely strangle the baby as he attempts to show him some lovin’, probably tip the bassinet by trying to climb up and see the baby and his help may not always be very helpful. But I’m going to love every minute of it.

My feet and hands are puffy and swollen, I’m edging towards hitting the 100kg mark and I now wake up to use the bathroom at least three times per night.

But I’m glowing; I’m glowing internally, full of happiness and gratitude. I’m thankful for the ability to be able experience pregnancy, I’m thankful for my cheeky thriving toddler and my supportive fiancé.

Mummy Blogger  xx

Tiarne

 

Tiarne Straatman

tiarne.straatman@gmail.com

 

http://www.yourmummyblogger.blogspot.com/

https://www.facebook.com/yourmummyblogger

https://www.instagram.com/mummyblogger__/

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Guest Blog – The question everyone can’t wait to ask

So, you have started a family and your little one is starting to grow up and become a little bit more independent (well as independent as a toddler can be) and everyone starts asking – when are you having the second one? For me it is always an awkward question to answer and I often respond with a vague ‘we’ll wait and see’ or ‘we aren’t too sure’-but the truth is, we have been trying for over 6 months and nothing has happened. For those of you who don’t know me personally, falling pregnant with Hunter took quite sometime, and with each unsuccessful month it made me feel miserable and wonder what was wrong with me. All my friends and colleagues were getting pregnant within a month or two and here I was waiting each month with trepidation, hoping to take a test and see those 2 little lines appear. After months of trying, I became convinced that something was wrong, so my husband and I underwent a barrage of tests with the only thing being discovered was that I had borderline Poly-cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) but that it shouldn’t impact my fertility. As luck would have it I fell pregnant the following month and the rest is history…..

Knowing all of this, I had presumed that it would also take a little longer the second time around, but had also been told that once you have had one baby, falling pregnant the second time is often easier, and I had secretly hoped that this was the case. Again after months of disappointment I spoke to a doctor and was told that the uterus can change position after childbirth making it hard to conceive, or that there was such a thing as ‘secondary infertility’. This really got me thinking about why we were trying for baby number two, Was it because it felt like it was the next step? Was it because we had hoped that they would be closer with a smaller age gap? Was it because watching Hunter grow and develop has made us forget the newborn stage? There were so many reasons both for, and against, that it can make your head spin! Then I delved deeper  – Was it fate that my body wasn’t blessing me with a little brother or sister for Hunter? Was it the fact that some days I can barely deal with one child, let alone another? Was it because adding another baby in the mix would stretch our family too thin both emotionally and financially?

There really is never a perfect time to start, or add to your family but after much discussion my husband and I we have decided that there is no need to rush, and our future is already be written one way or another. We have decided to put our baby making plans on hold for the time being, to focus on the present – and simply enjoy the times that having only one child can bring. Who knows what the future holds, or how big our family is destined to be but for now, we are just going to focus on the gorgeous, inquisitive, and healthy little man that we have already been blessed with. So next time your curiosity gets the better of you and you feel the urge to ask someone about their baby plans, be aware that there might be more to it than meets the eye, and your innocent question may have a much bigger impact than you ever intended.

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@mummymisgivings

X

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Mother of a toddler and a baby? I hear you!

The reality of motherhood is if you have more than one child, you have most likely had a point where you have had to deal with two babies or a baby and a toddler……to all these mothers RESPECT!!!

▫ I see the rings under your eyes from being woken up by a tag team of little humans. One screaming for food or pooping at ungodly hours. The other demanding water or yelling that their socks be put on after falling off in bed.

▫ I understand you are constantly checking nappies and sniffing for who has pooped. Now you have twice as much nappy time, it seems like all you do is check for poop change poop, change wees….ask the toddler of they want to got toilet….toddler then poops in their nappy or pants anyway……repeat the process over and over until bedtime.  No wonder you are always slightly distracted by poop or fart smells.

▫I see that you can barely hold a conversation like a normal person. As you always have one eye on the baby who is probably eating something off the ground or throwing things. While your toddler runs about screaming, having tantrums or interrupting you every 30 seconds to declare ‘Mum, look truck’….’Mummy, bus’. Also, see point one. The whole poop thing is very distracting and makes it hard to hold an adult conversation when you’re sniffing a small humans butt.

▫ I have observed you sweating at the shops. Where you either have
        * A – a double pram filled with arms and legs  
        * B – a double trolley full of arms and legs grabbing things off shelves    
          *C – a pram and baby carrier strapped to you like you’re a one man band.

▫ I get why you don’t find it funny when every second person stops to say ‘oh wow, you certainly have your hands full’. While I understand people are just trying to be nice, I have rarely been out alone with my two children without hearing this at least once. If people can see that my hands are full and I am a sweaty mess, don’t stop me to declare how you can see how busy I am???

▫ To the mum negotiating with the toddler with smarties (or chocolate of choice) because the baby is crying and you need them in the car. I get it, do what you can to get them where you need them. Having a toddler is like dealing with a small drunk person, negotiating with them is harder than negotiating with a terrorist,  add a screaming baby to the mix and you have a stressful situation, to say the least.

▫ I understand that your TV viewing mainly consists of Thomas the tank, In the night garden or Dora. I also get that eating is less relaxing these days and normally consists of scraps from the high chair tray or left over nuggets that are quickly consumed in the small 10 minute window that (if you’re lucky) both children are sleeping.

▫I can see the faded spit up/dribble  stains on your clothes that you have just wiped with nappy wipes because it’s easier than getting changed. Also, the small chocolate finger prints on your jeans from when the toddler was trying to get your attention while you changed the babies nappy are a dead giveaway that you’re a mother of a baby and toddler.

▫ I  see you on a baby free night out. You wait for these moments, footloose and fancy free. Yet, you really don’t know what to talk about. You hear a baby crying and it distracts you, your handbag feels so light without all the nappies and snacks.  Deep down, you miss your little snot monsters?

▫ Most of all I see the worry and doubt in your eyes. Am I doing enough? are my children happy? Am I doing the right thing? You are. 

Having one child is hard but wrangling a baby and toddler is definitely hard work and involves a lot of ducking and diving.

** NOTE: If you are a parent with twins, triplets etc 😙, I can only imagine….well done to all the mummas.

I think we have all earnt our wine tonight.

Rachelle xx

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Don’t judge

These days it seems everyone is always judging others, the decisions they make and making assumptions about that person based on very little information.  Almost everyday there is some topic on my news feed where women are bickering about something that in the scheme of things is a very minute detail. I believe ‘each to their own’ and we have the right to make choices during pregnancy and with our children and shouldnt be judged or feel the need to justify our actions.
I thought I would share some things from pregnancy, birth and being a mum that I am sure people will judge.  Hopefully it makes other mums more comfortable with decisions they make.

¤ I had very few food restrictions in both my pregnancies.  My Obgyn was happy for me to eat anything I wanted (in moderation). The only thing he restricted was soft serve ice cream and fish high in mercury.  I ate sushi, deli meat, soft cheese and even had a wine a couple times on a special occasions.  As long as food was fresh and cooked well there were no problems.

¤ I wore heels when I was pregnant. Yep, high heels, stilettos, boots. I didn’t just start wearing them because I was pregnant. I have always worn them. During both pregnancies I received comments about it and how I could fall etc. I was sensible about it and often had some flats around incase my swollen feet got sore or I had to walk a distance.

¤ I wanted a C section.  Even though in the end fate took this decision out of my hands as my son was breech.  The truth is I never had any interest in a vaginal birth. The thought of it frightened me, my inner control freak took over and was booked in for an elective c section anyway. Women often look at me like I took the easy way out or somehow think I am less of a mother all because of how I gave birth. They ask me if I am disapointed that I missed the natural childbirth experience…..um no. I have two healthy children. Why would I be disappointed? It’s my body and my choice how I have my babies. I don’t feel I missed anything and the important part is raising the children,  not how they were born.

¤ I  didn’t enjoy breast feeding and stopped early.  Something about breastfeeding didn’t work for me. I was uncomfortable and just didn’t enjoy it. I gave it a go both times. My son was breastfed for 12 weeks and my daughter 6 weeks. I had enough milk and I can still hear my maternal health nurse freaking out when I told her I was switching to formula. Both babies were very fussy breast feeders and I believe it’s because I wasn’t comfortable.  I wasn’t going to continue doing something that made me unhappy and my baby fussy, when there was a suitable option available. 

¤  I have used controlled crying techniques for both my children.  Of course I don’t just let them cry for hours and I give them just as much unconditional love as the co sleeping mums. Having my children learn to self settle and sleep in their own beds was important for myself and my husband.

I’m not writing these things to say what I have done or decided is right and I’m certainly not being arrogant about my decisions. Simply put, this what has worked for me.

Everyone (especially women/mothers) need to be more supportive of each other. I applaud the women who have had a drug free birth, the mums who breastfeed for 12 months or who choose attachment parenting. Even though its opposite to what I have done. Whatever choice you make is fine with me, happy children and parents is what counts. Be confident, own your choices and don’t let anyone’s opinions get you down.

Rachelle xx

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