Stop going on about colic…

Once he starts smiling, people around him respond. They gaze at him and he gazes back. He watches the curtains flapping by the window. Then grandma visits and she can’t take her eyes off him. With this new attention, his excitement rises to a level that makes him uncomfortable but, alas, he has not yet developed the ability to self-sooth. As the stimulation and stress levels rise he starts to get distressed. He becomes tense and begins to strain and groan, especially late in the day.

His parents become anxious, “Is he constipated? Why does he writhe and arch his back?” Soon his distress level makes him cry and scream. He is picked up and passed hand-to-hand around the family who gaze at him, trying to fathom the cause of his discomfort. The parents ask advice from neighbours to Emergency Departments and the cascade of advice starts. (from here)

Must be colic hey?  I actually don’t understand why or how so many people casually throw out “oh he’s got colic” when they clearly have no idea what colic is or what they are talking about.

Colic is uncontrollable crying in an otherwise healthy baby.  You can’t have crying, you wouldn’t say oh she’s got uncontrollable crying.  It is horrible and heart wrenching to listen to a baby cry and be unable to sooth them, therefore do some research yourself, and describe it correctly. Grrr.   People usually assume it is to do with trapped wind as babies pull their legs up (babies always pull their legs up) and therefore instantly resort to over the counter medications such as gripe water or Infacol moving on to Dentinox and maybe a little Gaviscon thrown in.  Why?  Why are we all so desperate to shove medicine down our babies as soon as possible?  Babies in Africa are just carried with their mothers, fed when needed and cared for – they don’t have this over whelming obsession with colic and related medicines.  Why is our colic worse?

And on the issue of trapped wind, what is with the continual patting, rubbing and jiggling our babies to get out this wind?  It’s not held in with an iron door, it’s an air bubble.  It’ll come up – the vomity dribble comes up, what stopping the air?  Babies burp perfectly well at other times, surely as long as they are sat up and able to breath and relax if they need to burp they will.  Plus babies who are crying need to burp because they are gulping air and crying NOT crying because they need to burp, anyway,  I digress…

As far as I can see there are two sensible approaches to dealing with this uncontrollable crying  – making sure the baby is getting enough to eat and making sure the baby is getting enough sleep.  Done.  Considering the crying occurs in the evening that gives 20 hours in the day (ish) to focus on the other bits.  Babies generally “grow out of colic” (can you “grow out of crying?”) by around 3 months, coincidentally the time that feeding routines are properly established and babies have more control of their environment.

I guess this simplistic view will irritate some, particularly mothers who babies have had “colic” and feel they did everything they could to help them.  There is however considerable research that backs this up and I promise I have done my research.  Firstly the cure for colic is often found through proper breastfeeding and ensuring the baby gets all the fatty milk and empties one boob.  And secondly bore the baby to sleep this guy might actually be my hero, as I somehow found an article that pretty much summed up all the things I had been moaning about! (and he says bee in my bonnet!)

So stop those bees buzzing and relax, lets just give our babies the chance to feed and sleep properly and maybe there will be less of this catch all term “colic”

PS this post is also awesome!

Why do some people have children?

I have been affected by reading lots of lovely mummy posts recently and have actually been more positive than usual! However, a reply by Gemma to my post on parenting experts got me thinking about a major bee, why DO some people have children?  I’m not even thinking of the Michael Philpot and Jeremy Kyle esque characters but more those women you meet every day and wonder.

Take a “friend” of mine, Maggot. Maggot has apparently been trying for children for years and recently got pregnant after the doctor told her she needed to have sex more.  You’d have thought in the preceding few years she’d have realised, but hey. Since having her daughter she has shown a spectacular lack of interest in a very very slow weight gain, and instead concerns herself with what outfit to dress her in that day. WTF?

Or Worm.  Worm was the biggest hypochondriac going throughout her pregnancy and didn’t we hear about it.  Worm’s daughter had an unknown rash across her face the other day but Worm brought her to the baby group anyway.  It was chicken pox.  WTF?

Or Slug.  Slug states she wants to do the best for her son  She wants to “help him” Slug gives her 12 week baby to her MIL for 4/5 hours at least twice a week.  I am also pretty sure she lets him CIO. WTF?

Or finally Beetle.  Beetle is a pretty loving mother overall and shows concern for her son regularly.  However Beetle appears to have absolutely no knowledge of baby sleep therefore her son barely naps.  He is constantly looking exhausted and whinging, often escalating further up the crying scale.  Beetle never encourages him to sleep (despite gentle pointing out that might be the problem) and always faces him to the world “engaging” him.  WTF?!?

OK none of these are life threatening (except potentially that rash) but some mothers don’t seem to have a clue, or just don’t seem to care.  They are only tiny babies for such a short time, surely it is our duty to do a little reading / discussing and apply this in bringing them up in as loving environment as possible.  I am fully into baby led parenting but some basic idea of regular feeding and sleeping is pretty essential so you know what your baby is leading you to do?

It bugs me, fact.  To be honest i just want to say, get a grip and look after your baby properly.  Stop making those bees buzz in my bonnet.

In memory of Matilda Mae and The Lullaby Trust

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As a new blogger I have just come across the renamed Lullaby Trust, formerly FSID. From their site:

We have chosen our new identity to help us raise our voice, to ensure that sudden infant death is not ignored or considered to be an issue of the past.

Across the country, over 600 apparently healthy babies continue to die suddenly and unexpectedly every year. This is unacceptable and we want to do all we can to prevent these deaths.

We believe that our new identity will help us to reach even more parents with our expert advice on safer sleep for babies.  Through greater engagement with families and also with policy makers we hope to achieve our ambition to halve the number of babies dying by 2020.

Jennie, mother of Matilda Mae  is helping them raise awareness and asking us to share our own bedtime routine. We have a bath, massage, feed a sleepytime – with a Mozart lullaby playing in the background throughout. The power of music is incredible  hearing that tune any time of day also makes me feel sleepy!

For Jennie, Matilda Mae and The Lullaby Trust

Which parenting expert is right?

There’s a lot of parenting ideas out there… a lot.  It’s all a little over whelming and when you want to help/ improve/ change something it can be both useful and confusing…

There’s Gina with her strict routines – I can’t bear the idea of CIO (more another day) but actually the idea of keeping naps dark and at a similar sort of time seems to help.  The babywhisperer Tracy apparently makes it EASY but the 2 days I spent trying to follow her structure was possibly the most stressful so far!  However I generally don’t feed to sleep now and I learnt that from Tracy.  Attachment parenting gave me some lovely positive thoughts, promoting breastfeeding and togetherness.  But we don’t co-sleep and it isn’t something that would suit our family.

And these are just the most well known – there’s many many more. Some mummies just follow their instincts but I would suggest they are the minority, most are either led by books or family – and therefore often outdated advice.

Does it matter?  Does any parenting philosophy actually affect how our babies grow up?  Can anyone prove this?  I have read numerous books and I;m not sure.  I am convinced of the benefits of breastfeeding and will not be deterred from that.  I love carrying BabBee in the sling and keeping him close – although secretly I want him to nap in his cot more.  Cloth nappies are firmly ingrained into our lives and I am eagerly awaiting Real Nappy Week from 15th -21st April.  I feel a bit guilty about the lack of co-sleeping (except for the first couple of weeks) as if I am letting BabBee down.

The bit that gets me is how often mothers do things as it’s “best for their baby” when really it is best for them. Perhaps if we were all a little more honest with ourselves the path would become clearer?

Why do women stop feeding so soon?

This blog is not supposed to be exclusively about breastfeeding but something happened today that made me want to post again on the topic so it’s on the agenda twice in a row (sorry!)

I went to a mummy group that i enjoy this morning and was sitting with 4 other women that i have seen about but am not “friends” with.  Bits of the conversation were swirling around breastfeeding as 4 out of the 5 of us were feeding, yet the one other mother – lets call her Wasp – has switched to formula said we made her feel bad as she no longer breastfed.

I am pro breastfeeding. Fact.  I intend to breastfeed as long as possible. Fact. I do not see why I should have to make a woman who has chosen to formula feed “feel better”

Wasp’s son is 11 weeks old.  She stopped breastfeeding around 2 weeks ago as “it is better for him” although I think she moved away from the idea longer ago as she explained how she gradually swapped by adding in an extra bottle of formula every few days. She told us how hard it was for her as she missed it and their special bond – but in the same breath how much easier life was now.

Wasp’s reasons for stopping are:

1) It’s better for him to feed every 3 hours as he is more settled. If this was actually true, I can’t see why she doesn’t breastfeed every 3 hours.

2) He no longer has colic… don’t get me started on people’s obsession with colic – IT’S A SYMPTOM NOT AN ILLNESS

3) Her baby can get fuller as there are more calories in formula as she’s seen breast milk separates in the fridge and “there’s loads of water” in it – What the hell does she make her formula with ?!?!?!

I actually had to point this out to her, whilst holding my 91st centile, exclusively breastfed baby.

Wasp is educated, polite and friendly.  Wasp is capable of breastfeeding. Wasp appears to be either ill informed or stupid.

Why doesn’t every woman want to feed her baby and give them them the possible start in life? This is a massive beeeee in my bonnet 😦

My Breastfeeding Journey

Everyone knows breast is best.  The government is shoveling this opinion down our throats at every opportunity… but here’s the thing I found…  Where is all the support?

The hospital were dreadful – one midwife literally tried to force my nipple into newborn BabBee’s mouth. Not the beautiful latching on moment I had been led to hope for.  I was in my hospital bed, desperately on my phone googling images of proper latching, is that the best this developed country can offer me?

And after discharge, at 8 days old I went to a breastfeeding support group and the La Leche volunteer was away on holiday.  At 9 days old I went to a Surestart meeting and honestly, I knew more than them. At 12 days old a Health visitor sat at the end of my sofa and said the latch looked ok.  I was in pain, my nipples hurt, there was no way I was giving up but I was wishing that a little less had been spent on a shiny advertising campaign and a little more spent on practical help.

98% of women CAN breastfeed plus according to the infant feeding survey (2010) :

Across the UK, the prevalence of breastfeeding fell from 81% at birth to 69% at one week, and to 55% at six weeks. At six months, just over a third of mothers (34%) were still breastfeeding

That’s low.  That’s shocking.  But actually maybe if all these new mummies had more practical support it would be higher. My bee in my bonnet is against the government here – not against all the new mothers; (most) mothers want the absolute best for that tiny little thing that has just arrived in their world. Every other woman in my ward gave formula in the hospital – the midwives encouraged it. Those midwives should be ashamed… Fact.

Why is this happening in this “developed” country we live in? It’s not normal practice worldwide.

There’s no conclusion here but a massive question.  My sister SibBee was amazing and that traditional female network made the difference as no professionals seemed to care.  Finally, thank goodness for the leaky boob, it still makes me cry and motivates me beyond belief!

Introducing….

Another day – another blog… another blogger – another opinion…

And I’m arriving in this new world, with too many beeeee’s in my bonnet! I’m a recent mum but have always been far too opinionated – and I think my husband has finally had an overflow of all my ranting – so I am moving to a new place to give my opinions (of which there are many).  And rant.  And maybe have some decent discussions.  And possibly even pick up the odd follower – although I won’t hold my breath too much!

Part of my problem is lots of people irritate me – either by being uninformed, uninterested or uneducated.  Or just plain ignorant.  So I can’t really tell anyone about my blog as most people will be featuring (or at least things they do and say) at some point – and I like to (at least appear to be) more tolerant.  There’s going to be me, one (of three) sisters SibBee and the husband, DaaBee.  And to everyone one else we will remain anonymous.

So welcome to my blog.  It’s the start of my blogging journey and currently all my opinions revolve around this mummy world I find myself in after the arrival of BabBee.  I am sure many people will disagree with those beeeees buzzing around in my bonnet but I would love to know about it.

Bee x

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