And Then I Realised...

I must be getting better!

I had to see my doctor on Wednesday. I'm really lucky that I have an amazing doctor. I could talk to him about anything.
He's very understanding of my anxiety and has never made me feel silly or crazy.
I saw him about something other than my anxiety and he had to prescribe antibiotics. After checking if I was breastfeeding and looking in his book he realised I couldn't have the antibiotics normally prescribed for my problem.
Instead he prescribed something else.

I can't remember if he was talking about the original antibiotics or the second item he prescribed but he told me that "it had been reported that one baby had bloody diarrhoea whilst their mother was using this medicine".
He then went on "oh, I probably shouldn't have told you that. You'll think that it will happen to you too"
He was right. NORMALLY I would.
But I stopped and felt really excited and might have said slightly too loud,
"Oh my goodness! I must be getting better!! I didn't think that at all!"

I always thought that if the chances of something happening were 1 in a million, then I would be that 1.
Why wouldn't I?
Even if the chances were 1 in 99 million I would still be that 1, or one of the boys would, or my husband would.

For me to not think that straight away when he told me of that one baby reacting to the medication I knew that, even for that minute, I am getting better.
By myself.

"Just because it happened to that one baby it doesn't mean it would happen to us does it?"
I asked.
"And that was one baby out of how many?"
"Out of every baby whose mother has used this and breastfed" he replied.
I was happy with that.
"And it doesn't necessarily mean that it was due to this medication that the baby had bloody diarrhoea does it? It could've been something else and just been a coincidence right?"

I walked out of the surgery with a skip in my step.
I didn't even realise I was feeling better in this way.

I still have a long way to go (that same night I cried and had a panic attack at the boys fighting on Waterloo Road)
I think some areas I will never feel better but I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

This though, is a very good start!


Framlingham Castle

When I think back to Primary School outings two particular places spring to mind. Framlingham Castle and Orford Castle.
I remember the days so clearly. I loved history, castles and I loved school trips, so these days were perfect for me.
Last year we were thinking of places we could take Charles that he would find fun, interesting and that would educate him. Something different from the beach, zoo or park.
I then remembered the castles.
We happened to visit Framlingham Castle when they had an event on so it was alive with energy and reenactments.
The afternoon was fantastic, and Charles loved walking along the top of the castle, holding the huge swords and wearing the big heavy helmets.
As we left we decided to sign up to English Heritage for a year. We love discovering Suffolk, and Norfolk, and thought this was ideal to encourage us to go to places. Sadly we've found it to be un-useful, with most places consisting of just one wall or our biggest waste of a visit which was to basically the outline of 3 walls, when I say outline I mean that the walls hardly existed, all that is left are the foundations in the ground. Really not worth a visit. Especially as now homed in this same area is a childs playground which was overgrown and graffiti-ed.
We won't be renewing our membership.

Nevertheless today we revisited Framlingham Castle at the request of Charles.
It was extremely quiet, which was nice in a sense but a complete contrast from our previous visit.
The boys (Charles and my husband) again walked around the top of the castle wall, as much as they could due to current building work, whilst I walked around the grounds with Harry looking for things to explore.
We found that we didn't have much to do and our visit was only short. Had the weather not been as cold, and the walk not been so muddy, we would have walked around the outside of the castle. I did try to attempt this with Charles but as it was a tiny bit muddy/damp I almost slipped and didn't want to risk a steepish hill with him. It also isn't pushchair friendly so either expect for only one of you to do the walk (whilst the other goes for a coffee or a beer as there is a pub nearby) or remember to take a sling/carrier.

The castle is beautiful and if we didn't have the children/if the children were older we would certainly take advantage of the tour equipment available. By tour equipment I mean the headpieces/handheld speakers which guide you around the castle telling you of its history.
We would revisit for a picnic/afternoon out whilst we have the free entry because of our English Heritage membership but wouldn't pay to get in unless it is an event.
This may sound rude, we understand that any money we give will go to the upkeep of the castle and to afford to put on events, but we'd also like to get a lot out of it, which at the moment, with 2 small children, we don't.

The castle is beautiful though, as our the views surrounding, and I would recommend a trip there if you are able to take advantage of the guided tour, or if you are visiting whilst an event is taking place.

There is also a £2 parking charge to be aware of when visiting the castle.





Once Upon a Time, by Charles

Recently Charles' imagination has really become inspired.
We've always tried to encourage him to use his imagination and with the addition of Show Me Show Me into his life he's certainly going for it.

The last month or so we've had the introduction of stories.
Charles will grab a book, open and read.
Today he simply shaped his hands as a book and read me a story.

These are a few of his masterpieces:

Once upon a time.
There was a mummy.
There was a dinosaur bird.
Dinosaur bird did eat the mummy.
The end.
Once upon a time.
There were some more mummies.
And some more dinosaur birds that did eat the mummies.
I did save the mummies.
The end.

Once upon a time.
There was somefink.
It was some 'ghetti [spaghetti]
It did fall on the floor.
It was dirty.
It went in the bin.
The end.

Once upon a time.
There was somefink.
It was another 'ghetti.
It falled on the floor.
It was dirty AGAIN.
It did go in the bin now.
The end.



Mirena Coil: Week One.

So a week and a day has passed since I had the Mirena Coil fitted.
I was originally going to post an update after 2 weeks but it seems to make more sense posting weekly in the beginning.
As I said in my previous post I was shocked by how many negative experiences are posted on the internet about these kinds of things and I struggled to find any positive experiences. As a result I want to regularly update with how I am getting on with the coil.

So the Friday of having it fitted I suffered with a bit of heavy bleeding but it was pretty much gone by the evening which was fantastic.
The period pains were quite intense in the morning, almost like early labour pains, and were a dull ache by the afternoon. I guess it felt as though I had pulled a muscle or had been exercising and was achy because of that (best way to describe it I think)
It wasn't too unpleasant and I didn't even notice it if I busied myself with something and didn't think about it.
I had no bleeding at all until spotting started yesterday afternoon. Today its almost like a constant light bleed.

Pains haven't been unbearably bad over the last week but have definitely been apparent. Mostly just like a dull ache or light period pain. Again only noticeable if I think about it or am not preoccupied with something else.

My husband thinks I've been grumpy with it but I'm just generally grumpy at the moment anyway (due to the snow stopping us from getting out and about so much!)

My appetite has been fine. A lot of reviews I read on the internet stated that weight gain was common and this was one of the main complaints!
It couldn't be any different in my case. My appetite has dropped slightly and I have lost around 4lbs! I have been consciously cutting down on food portions anyway but this has certainly helped I'm sure.
My husband and mum have noticed a difference in my shape (little bit off my tummy and face) so its a great start!

So a week in and I'd say my experience so far has been easy and positive. I've certainly forgotten about the pain and how uncomfortable it felt having the coil inserted (when I say uncomfortable I mean about someone having such a rummage in your bits without then pulling a baby out!!)
So far, no regrets.


Mirena Coil Fit: Positive Experience!

Last year I wrote a post about contraception, trying to decide what was best
the coil or mini pill?
I wanted to blog about my experience. It seems silly because I wouldn't sit and tell a complete stranger in a coffee shop about my experience with the coil or walk around town with a placard stating "I have a Mirena Coil!" Or "I'm on the mini pill!", but its easier hiding behind a screen. I'm also quite open if people ask for advice or want to know about something. So by opening this post or reading past this point I'll assume you want to know.
I'm also hoping for a positive experience and want to be able to have this accessible to others who Google, like I did!

I'd planned to have the coil fitted back in December and last minute, being the night before I was due to have it, I stupidly Googled.
I was greeted by lots of negative stories. I asked for advice on Twitter and was thankfully given a few positive stories but the negative ones totally outweighed the positive.
With that I changed my appointment from a 'coil fit' to a 'coil chat'.
I explained to my doctor about the fact that I'd chickened out. We discussed side effects, the procedure itself and I was left feeling a bit better about it all.
I left with the mini pill to take in the mean time until I was ready to rebook for the coil fit.
I kept forgetting to take the mini pill so mid January decided to stop altogether and book my appointment. It takes a while to get an appointment date as you have to see the doctor and nurse at the same time so finding a day and time they are both free is quite a challenge....apparently!

Yesterday I had my appointment and I didn't cancel.
The general side effect I'd seen when I Googled and when asking on Twitter was cramping/period pains and bleeding.
Before I went to the appointment I followed my doctors advice of taking paracetamol, so that the period pains wouldn't be as bad as normal.
At the time I first spoke to the doctor last year our surgery didn't stock the Mirena coil so I had to get a prescription and take it in myself.
The box is HUGE so I took my big leather bag but still have to hold my hand over the top and keep it close to my body to conceal the contents.
The nurse called me and as we walked down the corridor I told her I was nervous and she then informed me that the doctor had a trainee gp with her.
A male trainee gp.
I quietly said I wasn't keen and teared up a bit. I said the same as the doctor and in a way felt pushed into having the trainee stay but I'm glad I did as they have to learn somewhere! And it means if I ever have problems at least there's another gp who can help, and it won't be as embarrassing as he'd of seen 'me' before!

I talked about my concerns and was comforted by the gp and nurse and we joked about cold hands, coil horror stories and losing jewellery in places jewellery shouldn't be lost!
I was feeling better already.
I undressed, laid on the bed and the doctor performed an examination. She told me everything she was going to do before she did it and this would be my biggest advice. With a coil fit, smear test, anything 'invasive' like this...ask the doctor, nurse, midwife, consultant to talk through what they are going to do and what they are doing.
I'd made the doctor aware of my fear of internals due to a rough and heavy handed midwife during Harry's birth and she took this on board and was gental and checked I was ok as she performed the examination.
The fact that my doctor did this made it a lot better for me and helped me relax; although it wasn't pleasant of course but it certainly wasn't as awful as I thought.
The nurse stood 'head end' and talked to me about the boys, and about Harrys birth because I was getting horrid flashbacks.
The doctor inserted the clamp to be able to fit the coil and see clearer and it didn't hurt at all. Again, letting them know you're concerned will help with this not being shoved in and wound open quicker than you can scream "OUCH". I also think it helps to just not think about what they are doing.
I tend to cover my face and not look whenever having an internal, I did this when pregnant both times and looked at the wall when I had my smear. I find that if I watch I tend to tense up and not relax. At no point today did they have to tell me to not tense up.

There were then some measurements and swabs being taken and the doctor used some local anaesthetic to numb me. She said this isn't done the majority of the time but I was special so she was doing it for me, this was because of the trauma from Harry's birth still being so fresh.
I'd recommend asking for this IF you feel you need it. I'm not sure if it made much difference to me actually as you're about to find out.
The worst bit was, if I heard them correctly, when a clamp was placed in to help the coil go in. I'm not talking about the silver clamp which resembles a beak, but something else. This did hurt and did make my eyes water but not enough to put me off. Within 5 minutes the pain had gone. The pain was right at the top of the cervix. (I think)

After this I felt a tiny bit of pulling and prodding and then DONE!
The doctor gave me a quick clean and then provided a big maternity pad (oh how I've missed those) and told me to close my legs and just lay on the bed for a while.
I was there for about 10 minutes. They checked to see if I was dizzy, how I felt in general and helped me to sit up and get off the bed when needed.

I felt slight cramping straight away but nothing too uncomfortable. As I said to the nurse, it could of just been one of those moments when you imagine a pain because you expect it.
I got dressed and was told to return in 6 weeks so the nurse can check everything is ok.
I was instructed to go home and rest and eat cake (yeah right! I wasn't able to rest at all due to a lack of support.)

I found within half an hour that I was bleeding and had cramping and period pains. The cramping wasn't bad enough for me to take any more paracetamol at all during the day and found distracting myself (colouring and painting with the boys) completely took my mind off any discomfort.
The bleeding was slightly heavy, but not pouring, at first but has now become almost like spotting.
At the moment I can just feel a dull ache in my back and hips but its not at all unbearable.

I will write another post in 2 weeks updating my progress with the Mirena Coil.
From my experience so far I would say DON'T put it off just because of it being painful. It's over within minutes and then just forgotten about...like a blood test I suppose.
And don't let embarrassment stop you. If I can do it with a trainee male doctor (who was young!) helping then you can certainly do it with a doctor and nurse...or just a nurse if you go to your family planning clinic.
Make sure you are with a doctor or nurse you feel comfortable with and be aware that you CAN STOP at ANY POINT! If you don't want to go any further just tell them and everything will be removed and no one will think badly of you.

Fingers crossed I have a positive 2 weeks!
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