Birth! A Story

{A positive-ish birth story, because I became obsessed with reading these things when pregnant} 
Our (birth) story begins with Hot Fuzz, and sticky toffee pudding. It was a Tuesday, early afternoon, and I had just retired my big pink birth ball for another day, convinced that for the 10th day runni…

He's Here!

Introducing Rory Stephen Stanley, born 10th September 2019 at 21:08, weighing 7lb 14.5oz. We are obsessed.

{Birth story to follow 😍}

#HaikusForFormerLovers

{Whimsical haikus for men I have dated. (And some that I haven't.) Inspired by Caroline Cala}

Banged your teeth on mine By the goalpost, after school (First kisses can be hard)
Fickle musician -
We were 'too young' to commit.
Well, you were, at least

The sound of your voice Didn’t fe…

Additional Weight

{A poem}

My stomach
Is heavy
Almost as though
Someone is living
Inside of it
Treating it like
'A bloody hotel.'

Breastfeeding Class

{A poem in which I momentarily feel sorry for myself after breastfeeding class} 

‘What are the benefits of breastfeeding?’
Our irish teacher asked
Laughing at dad’s lack of involvement
In baby’s primary nourishment plans
‘Can we all list the benefits of breastfeeding?’
She handed out the pens…

Waddle

{A poem}

Ducks waddle
Geese waddle
Chunky Pekingese waddle
Penguins waddle
Big pigs waddle
Now, so do I.*

*{And so does our oldest cat, but let's not shame her for no reason here 😉}

Mother Ship, by Francesca Segal {A Review}

'Why is Evan using his shared parental leave now, didn't you want to save it?'
In profile, I watch Sophie's expression. You don't owe her an answer, I think, feeling my own face flush. Just say any old thing, but Sophie offers the truth. 'Because now is when we have William,…

But First, Let Me Take A S(h)elfie

{A story about my unborn baby's stubborn streak... Takes after his mother ;)}

Something I’ve been looking forward to - ever since my cousin’s wife posted pictures of herself doing so with her own, which was a while ago now - is using my bump as a shelf. It’s one of those things, I have to say, …

{Hormonal} Dream State

{A poem about the weird tricks pregnancy plays on your brain when sleeping}

And if I could only show you
The vividness of what’s in my head
The moment I lay myself down to rest
Each night when we get into bed
They say it’s due to the hormones
They say it’s a common effect
I only hope, to god, if y…

On Not Really Wanting It All

{A brain dump regarding the idea that women can have it all, and the judgment we get if we try to have it all, and the judgment we get if we don't try to have it all... and so on and so forth}

If there’s one thing feminism has taught me, it’s that women can have it all. I’ve had that message dr…

Pig Wife

{A short poem about snorting really loud - like an actual pig - when sleeping, which is an embarrassing side effect of congestion in pregnancy...}

I didn’t mean to do it
I’m not quite sure what to say
I apologise, oh husband, dear
For snorting us awake

(Again.)


***

And a little update, just because:

What Happens At Hypnobirthing...

{A humorous take on our experiences in hypnobirthing class, with some positive birth stories at the end}


“Now, I want you to close your eyes, and take a deep breath iiiin…
“…and out

“Breathe iiin…”

I’m doing my upward breathing. And I’m marvelling at how well I’m doing at relaxing and clearing my mind…

No Pressure, Like

{A poem about mounting pressures to have a baby before I was ready. My mum even said to me a few years back 'well, you certainly won't be a young mum now...' which was nice 😂}

‘You’ll be the next one with a baby!’
They told me at eighteen
The cat that I was cradling
The only evidence …

Baby Bump Barbie // Mind The Bump

{A poem about the constant desire to hold my bump, with a Meghan Markle spin 🤰}

When Meghan announced her pregnancy, the world got to its feet
A touch more of that Markle Sparkle, being just what England needs
And as her bump grew bigger, we watched with baited breath
That is until our news chan…

And Now I Can't Go Back To The Co-op

{Unrelated pics of our GR being a goon, because it's her third birthday today, and we forgot. Arguably not the worst thing I've done today, though. Intrigued? Read on...}

It’s done a lot of strange things to my body, pregnancy. It’s turned a gas free zone into whatever the burping equivale…

Baby Brain

{A poem}

I bet you think that ‘baby brain’
Is just something they say
To be funny
But it’s not

I bet you didn’t know that ‘baby brain’
Actually means
The dying off of brain cells
To make room
For your instincts
And those parts of you that don’t run
On intelligence

I bet no-one told you ‘baby b…

{Self} Portrait of a Pregnant Woman at 30 Weeks Gestation

{Well, 30+1, but whose counting?}

We have hit 30 weeks together, this baby and I, and I thought it time to jot down a few thoughts on how exactly this partnership has been. Because pregnancy is one of those things that has absolutely blown me away, in terms of how little I knew about what to expect,…

Five Faves

{A study in quite nice things}

It has been a busy week. We've had a 4D scan, a new phone that my husband is jealous of (my old one got destroyed by pregnancy induced clumsiness), Love Island mania and tired, tired legs. We've also had a mild panic thanks to all of our apps simultaneously re…

Day Three

{A super short poem about the third day after birth, which several friends have described to me as being brutal - this is based on their experiences, as my baby is still in utero!}

They told me this would happen, so it shouldn't be a shock
I've never felt so useless, or so all consumed with…

The Snooze Button

{A poem about our morning routine (or should I say, my disruption of it...)} 

We’ll wake up at 8:30, he turns and says to me
Goodnight love, you sleep well,
Soon, morning it will be

As spoons, we lay and snuggle, fighting off the cold
In this way I hope we’ll lie,
Long after we get old

Come day…

Baby's Face: A Sneak Peek

He's who I write all these poems about.
10 weeks to go! ♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡

#GirlBoss

{A poem about a number of #girlboss’ I’ve worked with, who weren’t too nice to the other women on their teams}

I understand it’s harder for us, once risen to the top
Trust me, I have experience, have had everything you’ve got
We’re often disrespected, our ideas cooed at as they scoff
But really th…

Using Up Film

Moody Manchester, 15/06/19, en route to a brunch date at Dishoom...

... And my husband snuggling our golden retriever, who isn't supposed to be on the bed, but always manages to end up cuddling with us anyway. The minx.

We Went On A Babymoon

{To look back on when our next holiday is all-consumed by building sandcastles ;)}

'We should have a babymoon,' I said to my husband, upon realising that the second part of our honeymoon, scheduled to take place in Venice this summer, was unlikely to materialise thanks to my maternal state.…

How To Hold A Conversation With Your Non-Pregnant Friends

{Because sometimes they don't want to hear about how gassy you are}

Have you ever – before becoming pregnant, or even thinking about pregnancy as something that was on the horizon, near or far – sat down for a catch up with a baby filled friend, and had everything you were excited to tell them …

Birth Plans

{A poem about reactions to the words ‘natural birth’… I’m going to give it a go anyway ;)}

Why are you choosing a birth centre, isn’t that high risk?
What’s wrong with a hospital? I’d give that one a miss
Oh lord, not a water birth, like the hippies on TV?
You think you don’t want pain relief, b…

Old Wives

{A poem about old wives tales, and finding out baby's sex :)}

This is what they tell you:

If your morning sickness is extreme, more an endurance test
A roped ring sways in circles, rather than right to left
If your skin is soft and dewy, and you’re sleeping on your right
If the heartbeat gallo…

Five Faves

{Watch, Read, Listen, Repeat}
Dead To Me A dark comedy, centred on the lives of two grieving women, Dead To Me is a shock fest of human endurance, female friendship and failing relationships. I didn't expect a lot from it, but I LOVED it. I binged the entire series in a day, eschewing my respons…