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Motherhood

Can we just stop with the shitty advice on Facebook?

When I first found out I was pregnant I couldn’t wait to jump on Facebook and interact with other expectant mothers, after all I didn’t know anyone who was pregnant and there were only so many times I could tell my husband what size the baby was. By the time it got to the size of a blueberry he had already zoned out, so Facebook groups seemed to be the obvious place to connect with others who would share in my enthusiasm. It wasn’t long before I realised that people are idiots and they give shitty advice.

One of my friends is a registered nutritionist with a legit degree and her advice is based on current, relevant research. She also has a toddler which I believe is the ultimate masters degree when it comes to understanding fussy eaters. Whenever I saw a concerned mum post about something in her realm of expertise, I tagged Sarah in the post so she could comment. So Sarah did the right thing, she gave FREE advice to a concerned parent. The conversation went a little like this:

Concerned mum of a toddler: “Should I do this?”

Registered Nutritionist: “Registered Nutritionist here, this is the current research and advice regarding that.”

Idiot: “That’s not right, I know better. You shouldn’t give that advice. I was introduced to solids too early so I have IBS, allergies and asthma. I did this with my kids and you should do what I say.”

Me: “Well food-issue-Mcgee I really think that your talent in providing up to date accurate information in a mum Facebook group is going to waste. You need to donate your body to science for vigorous testing ASAP as you have found the sole cause of asthma, allergies and IBS. Seriously what were we all thinking listening to experts who say early introduction to food is good when you had all the answers the whole time!? Oh by the way I’m being sarcastic because you are an idiot.”

I didn’t say any of that of course because it’s not OK to attack or bully other mum’s ever. I just had the conversation over and over in my head for over a week until I was satisfied that the idiot had learnt her lesson and would never give shitty advice again. 

Well it turns out I was wrong! The idiot was back, this time with even better advice on a comment I made:

Concerned mum of a baby that cries all the time: “Can anyone recommend a Chiropractor?”

Me: “Yes, I had an excellent one in Winthrop, helped us so much, here are the details.”

Idiot: “You don’t need one, they just want to make money off you, my baby cried, it’s normal for babies to cry.”

Also me: “Well It’s-my-baby-she’ll-cry-if-she-wants-to, firstly the question was to recommend a chiropractor, not discredit a whole profession of licensed practitioners. Next time I need a healthcare professional I will call you, god forbid the pharmacist will try to make money off me. I feel so stupid for taking my 3 month old to a chiropractor because he cried all the time. I mean, it worked and we found out he had one leg 2cm longer than the other but what a waste of money. I could have saved a few hundred dollars and let him be one of those kids at school wearing one platform shoe because his legs were uneven.”

I didn’t say anything like that though because again, attacking other mums on Facebook is not OK people. I just fumed in silence while driving to work giving her lots of hand clicks and head snapping but I’m sure she felt that energy, right in her core. 

So why does this shitty advice annoy me so much? Surely I should be used to it by now, I mean it is Facebook after all. Well it’s the impact of these ‘experts’ weighing in on the conversations that bothers me. The impact is silence… all it does is stop people who have credible advice or opinions to stop commenting in fear of getting attacked. So please, next time you read a post by a concerned parent wanting valuable advice or opinions, stop giving shitty advice.

shitty advice
“Only feed the baby in direct moonlight or he will turn into a zombie” – shitty advice
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Motherhood

Sometimes being a mother makes me feel trapped

Sometimes being a mother makes me feel trapped. There I said it.

When I was young I wanted it all. I wanted to party, I wanted to travel, I wanted to have a career but really I was just passing time until I got married and became a mum.

I thought I would love maternity leave and at first I did. I went for walks in the sunshine, met friends for coffee, I cleaned the house, I went shopping. All I needed was to sleep more than three hours in a row and life would be perfect.

Something changed around six months. My savings started to run out and the thought of relying on my husband for money overwhelmed me. I was losing my identity and my independence but I was dreading returning to work. I was determined to make my blog a success, all I needed was for one post to go viral but it never did. I quit my job anyway because I lived too far from the office. The pressure was off and I started to enjoy motherhood again but something changed.

I found it hard to sit and just be with Will. I felt guilty like I should be doing something else. I felt unproductive, like I was wasting time.

I found a wonderful daycare that encourages free play and warms my gypsy soul. I found a job I love and started working part-time. It felt like it was all meant to be but then Will started getting sick. Nothing serious but enough to stay at home and question whether daycare is right for him. I feel like each day is groundhog day, I’m just getting by until bath time, waiting for my husband to come home so I can breathe.

We live our lives waiting for the next stage, waiting for that holiday, waiting for the promotion, waiting for our partner to propose, waiting for the wedding, waiting to get pregnant, waiting to have the baby. Then it all happens in the blink of an eye and we’re left wondering ‘what now?’

As selfish as it sounds, sometimes being a mother makes me feel trapped.

Sometimes motherhood makes me feel trapped
What shall we do today? I know, let’s stay home and do the same thing as yesterday.
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Motherhood

Why I took my three month old baby to a Chiropractor

I have to admit that before having Will I had never been to a Chiropractor. I always saw a physio or got a massage when I had back pain. To be honest I thought Chiropractors just twisted your neck until it made a cracking sound and that all sounded a little too dangerous for me. I never imagined I would be taking a 3 month old baby to a Chiropractor!

WHY WE DECIDED TO SEE A CHIROPRACTOR

When Will was a few months old he was really difficult. He cried in the car, he screamed when I tried to put him in his cot, he had wind issues, he had silent reflux, he wasn’t feeding well and I just thought motherhood was a little bit shit. Luckily one day my husband told me his friend had suggested a Chiropractor. I definitely took it on board but when two of my friends told me they had heard great things I was sold.

CONSULTATION

I decided to see Dr Luke Tassell. A friend from Mothers Group knew someone who had taken her baby to him so I felt like Will would be in safe hands. On the day of the appointment I almost cancelled because Will had a cold but the receptionist told me that it would be good for his immune system so off we went. I liked Dr Luke instantly, he’s a father of four (including twins) and Will loved him. He asked me about my pregnancy and labour and explained that in a fast, assisted delivery like Will’s it was common that babies required adjustments. He checked over Will and told me that one leg was 2cm longer than the other, his spine was out and his neck was really tight so he couldn’t fully rotate his head to the left.

TREATMENT

Dr Luke showed me this instrument which I would describe as a metal cylindar that acts like a clicky pen which he pushes into certain spots to do the adjustment. He pressed it on my leg and it was good to know how light the pressure was. He also showed me how soft he would be turning Will’s head when he needed to do the neck adjustments. The whole consultation and treatment was over within 10 minutes. Subsequent appointments only took a few minutes. Will was happy and smiled the whole time, he never cried once while we were there.

RESULTS

  • After one treatment Will stopped crying in the car.
  • After two treatments Will stopped crying when I put him into his cot asleep.
  • After three treatments Will started self settling. He just fell asleep while playing in the lounge room.
  • After four treatments his uneven legs were fixed.
  • After five treatments he rolled for the first time.

I stopped keeping track after that but the benefits kept rolling in (pardon the pun), his wind issues improved, he stopped catnapping, he started to sleep through the night (sporadically) and in general he just stopped crying.

baby to a chiropractor
Will going to sleep unassisted for the first time. Hallelujah.

COST

Will had 14 sessions, at $45 per session the total came to $686 but because we had private health insurance, the out of pocket expense was $328. Whilst not affordable for everyone it’s a price I was happy to pay for the results we got.

IN CONCLUSION…

I’m so glad that I took Will to the Chiro, if I had heard about it sooner then I definitely would have taken him earlier to see if it could have helped with breastfeeding. Since telling people that Will has gone to the Chiro I’ve spoken to plenty of people who swear by them for sleep issues. One person said their son’s ear infections stopped after going to a chiro so they didn’t have to proceed with grommets. Another woman said her daughter was always getting sick until she started taking her to the Chiro regularly.

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Motherhood

Sleep while the baby sleeps

I wasn’t really given much advice before having a baby but something I was told over and over was ‘sleep while the baby sleeps’.

During Pregnancy

It was annoying to hear ‘sleep when the baby sleeps’ before having a baby because it seemed so obvious. I smiled and nodded every time I heard it while secretly rolling my eyes thinking ‘Duh’.

The baby arrives

It was annoying when people said ‘sleep while the baby sleeps’ because the baby arrived and I didn’t feel like it. Sleep deprivation hadn’t set in yet and honestly I thought I was able to cope with broken sleep and didn’t need to ‘catch up’. I had way more important things to do like watching him to make sure he was still breathing. I wanted to look at photos and videos of him on my phone and when I ran out of photos I was in a baby google frenzy.

A few months in 

It was annoying when people said ‘sleep while the baby sleeps’ a few months in because it became obvious I had missed my window to ‘sleep while the baby sleeps’. I started expressing full time at 12 weeks which took up 4-6 hours a day because I had a hand held single pump, I simply didn’t have time to sleep.

five months

At this point I realised the advice was correct and I needed to ‘sleep while the baby sleeps’. No-one managed to pass this information onto my son though. He decided that around the same time I started mixed feeding and had time to sleep that he should start catnapping. By the time I got him down, washed the bottles, had a shower and climbed into bed he would wake up minutes later.

Seven months deep

Now I’ve completely given up on ‘sleep when the baby sleeps’. His current phase is not wanting to sleep at all during the day unless I hold him so I find myself getting to know the neighborhood really well, driving around until he goes to sleep. If that fails then I go for a walk through a shopping centre in the baby carrier and boom he’s out.

If I had any advice to give to first time mums – definitely sleep while the baby sleeps.. if you can!  

sleep while the baby sleeps
Definitely sleep as much as possible before the little vampire arrives.
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