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PRODUCT RECALL – Build-A-Bear Workshop Sulley Teddy Bear

Build a Bear

Sulley is a furry blue creature from the Monsters movies. The stuffed monster is about 17 inches high and 10.5 inches wide.

Identifying features

Item number 20241 on the sew in label. This can be located behind the care instructions label. In addition, a tracking label ending with 1687 can be found on a sewn in label on the backside of the leg of the stuffed monster.

What are the defects?

The stuffed animal’s eye can detach, posing a choking hazard to young children.

What are the hazards?

If the defect occurs, the product poses a choking hazard to young children.

Dates available for sale

  • 7th June 2013 – 27th June 2013

Where the product was sold

  • Nationally

Traders who sold this product

Build-A-Bear Workshop stores nationally

Supplier

Build-A-Bear Workshop Pty Ltd

Supplier’s web site

http://www.buildabear.com.au

What should consumers do?

Cease using the plush toy immediately. Return the teddy bear to the place of purchase for a full refund or an exchange teddy bear.

If consumers are not able to make it back to their nearest store, please call the Penrith store to arrange for a postage paid bag.

For further information Build-A-Bear Workshop on 02 4722 5379 or ProductHotline@buildabear.com.

How to Deal with Anxiety and Panic

Dr. Cate Howell

We all experience feelings of anxiety regularly – it is a normal emotion, very much related to fear.

It is often about something that might happen in the future, and may be described as a feeling of impending danger. Anxiety is actually there to protect us, so that we can respond to danger when needed. But sometimes it becomes a problem when it is persistent and severe, or interfering with our daily lives. We might experience generalised anxiety and find ourselves worrying about many things consistently, or we might experience more acute episodes of panic, with heart palpitations, breathlessness, sweating, nausea or light headedness. In fact, 14.4% of Australian adults will experience significant anxiety over one year, and 1.4-2.9% will experience recurrent panic episodes.

Let’s focus on panic, as it can involve unexpected and intense fear. When talking with a client about panic, we find out more about the panic attacks and the person’s background, and we do some tests to rule out medical causes of the symptoms. We also check whether the panic attacks are leading to disability, and in particular avoidance of doing usual activities. For example, if a person has a panic attack in the car, then they might avoid driving the car, or if they have one at the shops, they may not want to go to those shops again for fear of having another one.

It is important to find out the underlying fears in panic, as some people worry that the physical symptoms are signs of illness, or that they might pass out, or even die. Some people worry about how other people are going to react when they have a panic attack, and that they might not be supportive. The first thing that can help is information, as it can relieve fear. The individual can understand what is happening in their bodies and minds, and myths such as, “I’m going to lose it,” can be debunked. There are a range of psychological treatments that can be helpful, including working with thoughts that are not helpful, and relaxation and breathing techniques. In particular, abdominal or slow breathing is helpful.

With slow breathing, put one hand on the abdomen and the other on the chest. Be aware of the air moving in through the nose or mouth and down into the chest, then be aware of it as you breathe out. Breathe into the chest and down to the abdomen, so that both hands move as you breathe (the chest and tummy move out as you breathe in). Breathe at a gentle rate with one breath taking about 5-6 seconds, so “in, two, three, out, two, three”. Take medium breaths, rather than big or small breaths, and as you become more confident, you might like to say as you breathe out, “out, relax, let go” or “out, peace, calm”.

Remember that the panic does not define who you are, and that there are times when you have taken a stand against the panic.

Some people find carrying a written card in their purse/wallet useful, with words such as; “I know this is panic and I know what to do, breathe slowly and relax, it will pass and I will be fine.” If you need some assistance, see your GP and they may suggest that you see a psychologist or counsellor. Looking after your general lifestyle (nutrition, exercise, sleep), doing yoga or tai chi, and having regular massages or reiki can help. Plus, be less critical of yourself and focus on kind thoughts about yourself which may also assist.

There are some helpful resources, including:

  • “Release Your Worries, A guide to letting go of stress and anxiety,” by C Howell and M Murphy (book and CD)
  •  See my website www.drcatehowell.com.au for further information on anxiety and upcoming webinar series on “Release Your Worries.”
  • Centre for Clinical Interventions (www.cci.health.wa.gov.au): provides a wide variety of mental health information and resources.
  • Clinical Research Unit for Anxiety and Depression (CRUfAD) http://www.crufad.org/index.php/about has a wide range of information and resources.

 

Click here to read what Cate has to say about Post Natal Depression.

 

dealing with anxiety and panicDr Cate Howell OAM CSM is a medical practitioner, therapist, educator and author. She has clinics at Gilberton (moving to Myrtle Bank in December) and Goolwa, focussing on counselling, mental health and wellbeing. Cate has written two books to date; “Keeping the blues away” about depression, and “Release Your Worries” on stress and anxiety. Further information about Cate and the practices, a blog and helpful information are available on her website www.drcatehowell.com.au

Fudgy Cracked Cookies

Fudgy Crackled Cookies

These quick and easy chewy, fudgy cookies are delicious and have more ‘wow’ factor than your standard biscuit.

You’ll need:

1 box of Devil’s Food Cake Mix
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
2 large eggs
Icing sugar for rolling (works best if this has been sifted)

Method:

Step 1: Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Put the cake mix (I used Betty Crocker), eggs and vegetable oil (I’d run out, so used olive oil and it worked just as well) into a large bowl and stir.

Step 2: Once mixed, shape dough into 3cm/4cm balls. Place on a lined baking tray and leave to dry for a few minutes. (This is so that the icing sugar doesn’t get absorbed into the dough.)

Step 3: Roll the balls in icing sugar. Make sure they are very well coated, otherwise you won’t get that lovely crackled look.

Step 4: Place 6cm apart on the baking tray and bake for 10 minutes or until the middle has JUST SET. Don’t take them out too early, or you’ll find they ‘flop’.

Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Step 5: Eat them before hubby or the kids do!

Who’s tried them and what  did you think?!

PRODUCT RECALL: IKEA—KRITTER and SNIGLAR Junior Beds

Junior Beds

PRODUCT RECALL: IKEA—KRITTER and SNIGLAR Junior Beds

PRA number: 2013/13698
Date published: 15th August 2013

KRITTER with circle Info package.jpgSNIGLAR with circle Info package.jpg

Product information

Product description

KRITTER junior bed frame/guard rl 70×160 pine
SNIGLAR junior bed frame/guard rl 70×160 beech

Identifying features

20167541 KRITTER bed frm/guard rl 70×160 pine AP CN
70167671 SNIGLAR bed frm/guard rl 70×160 beech AP CN

Only KRITTER junior beds with date stamp (YYWW)
from 1114 to 1322 . and SNIGLAR junior beds with date
stamp from 1114 to 1318 are affected

What are the defects?

The metal rod connecting the guardrail to the bed frame can break.

What are the hazards?

A broken rod could expose sharp metal edges, presenting a laceration hazard.

Dates available for sale

  • 1st April 2011 – 31st May 2013

Where the product was sold

  • New South Wales
  • Queensland
  • South Australia
  • Victoria
  • Western Australia

Traders who sold this product

Exclusively at IKEA stores in QLD, NSW, VIC, SA and WA

Supplier

IKEA

Supplier’s web site

http://.www.IKEA.com.au

What should consumers do?

IKEA kindly asks customers who have a KRITTER or SNIGLAR junior bed to immediately check the date stamp located either on the headboard or the underside of the bed. If you have an affected unit please contact IKEA for a repair kit free of charge.

For more information, please visit IKEA.com.au or contact IKEA on: Homebush Bay, NSW (02) 8002 0400
Tempe, NSW (02) 8020 6641.

Advertisements and supporting documentation

 IKEA Product Recall Ad.pdf (60.0 KB) Press Ad.pdf (124.8 KB)

Top 10 Settling Tips for Your Baby

baby settling tips

Did you hear about the Mum who was pulled over by the Police for being sleep deprived? Well that was me.

Fortunately my baby was not in the car at the time. I was living in the country and on an errand and so tired that I was slightly speeding and driving with a swerving motion. The local policeman pulled me over, asked me to get out of the car, and started to explain why he had detained me. Within seconds I was bawling my eyes out and spluttering how sorry I was but I felt so tired I thought I was living in the ‘twilight zone’. He was a little surprised by my outpouring of emotion and not sure what to do in that situation (I don’t think it is in the manual). Anyway, bless him, he was a Dad and understood my predicament; he gave me a stern warning and the helpful suggestion to sleep during the day when my baby did. That was helpful advice and I share that pearl of wisdom knowing it definitely makes a difference to a sleep deprived parent.

There are many books full of ‘How to get your baby to sleep peacefully ’and they are wonderful but the key is to be awake and have a functioning brain so one can absorb the sacred knowledge.

I have researched a plethora of articles relating to sleep issues over the last 30 years and I have come to understand that one key element is crucial and without that element all the schedules and strategies won’t have the outcome you desire.  That element is ‘calm’.  ‘Yeah right!’ I hear some of you cry ‘how you are meant to be calm when you’re fatigued and your baby is so unsettled/ crying/ teething/’.

It is not as unattainable as you may feel, breathing deeply and rhythmically, and becoming aware of your emotional state, is the way to start. Remember how important and powerful breath is during the labour process, well it is in everyday life too. Our babies are subconsciously aware of our stress levels and can actually smell Cortisol, the hormone excreted by the Adrenal glands, when we are stressed or frightened. Cortisol creates ‘fight – flight’ reactions, and ‘brain fog’ in our being and when we are in this state our babies come along for the ride. When a parent is in adrenal overload and holding their child the child finds it very hard to relax and fall into a safe slumber.

OK, now I would like to stress to any of you who are pointing the finger at yourselves and going into shame and blame about being stressed out and dumping this on your child, stop it.  Stress is a normal part of our lives; you can teach your children to deal with their ups and downs and focusing on breath and relaxing the body is a great start. Being mindful of your state of being; especially at sleep time.  This will help create the peaceful state and secure feelings that enhance sleep time for your child.

Giving your baby the same cues for sleep will help teach them to recognise it is sleep time, and what your expectations are:

  1. Start winding down rituals when you notice your baby’s cues that they are tired
  2. Create quiet time, gentle cuddles and perhaps
  3. A massage in a darkened room is a great way to wind baby down; it can be just face, arms and legs or whole body. Keep constant eye contact to enhance this special intimacy.
  4. Feeding and changing
  5. Wrapping well or putting into a sleeping bag
  6. Every sleep time, sing or hum the same tune, softly and in a deep tone
  7. Create your own unique sleep dance, before you put them down
  8. BE PRESENT. Be aware of your breathing and expectations, if you’re in a hurry to get baby to sleep so you can ‘get on with it’, believe it or not baby will pick up on this.
  9. Remember it takes most babies approximately 10 minutes to go into a deep sleep, whether they are in your arms or in their bed.
  10. It is quite difficult for your child to say goodbye to you at sleep time, you are their favourite person

If you have had issues settling your little one in the past, be kind to yourself; there are no wrong ways, just opportunities to fine tune, let go of the old and embrace the new. Imagine the scenario you desire, the power of the imagination when we focus on what we do want can assist in making positive changes.

Do what is best for you and your child, living up to other people’s expectations is very draining. Honour your personal values, stay true to you and what you instinctively feel is right for you and your family.

Every child is different. Some babies require 45 minutes sleep during the day and are ‘nappers’ and others may need two hours. Most parents would love the 2 hours so they can do the day’s tasks, or have a snooze, but if that is not your child’s pattern do your best to find peace with that and not compare them to any other child. When we compare our life styles to others it only causes resentment and frustration, this then leads to stress, and the vicious cycle repeats and affects everyone in the family.

One more suggestion is ‘take time for you’, you are precious too. Filling up your own cup will help you get through the day and have the ability to give all that is required of you. So remember to take some time for you. Organise time so you can do whatever it is that will keep you fulfilled, and keep   your chimes ringing. The pile of washing can wait, it may drive you a little crazy seeing it there, so get out and have some fun, it will be there when you get back. Or even better, if someone offers their help say ‘YES PLEASE’ and point to the washing pile.

So next time your little one is stretching your patience; breathe in and let it go slowly. Put your baby down in a safe place and if it helps, grab a pillow and have a good scream into it, a healthy stress release, no judgement.  It is far better for all concerned if a parent is stressed to remove themselves from the situation. Let the tension flow out of your body, hang loose and breathe in a happy colour, and blow it out. With awareness and practise you will be able to shift your state of feeling stressed, and go back to your precious one with a calmer disposition. Now that is a much healthier, happier cycle to share.

Oh the wonder of hindsight.  Trusting my intuition and relaxing into motherhood my way, would have created a much calmer environment for assisting my baby to sleep. Respecting my own values and opinions instead of making other’s more valuable, would have eased tension, self doubt and the stress that was a major block in settling my baby.

Believe in yourself, follow your heart and head and enjoy the precious time with your little one, it can be exhausting but it is worth every second. Keep breathing, do the ‘Hokey pokey’ and shake it all about, its fun and will help you ‘chill out’.

 

Arnaum realised in her early career working with children, that when they received the guidance and love they required from their parents their behaviour was well balanced, and they were more comfortable in whom they were. This lead Arnaum to create a supportive and informative service for parents, realising that when parents are confident in their parenting role, and willing to acknowledge what they bring to the table, this enables a more positive parenting experience for all concerned.
Confident Parents = confident children.

Arnaum has enjoyed supporting and nurturing parents and their families as a Parenting Counsellor and Family Coach and Public Speaker for 28 years. She assists parents to develop their own individual, conscious parenting skills with confidence in their own unique style. Every child and family is unique so there is no one way to parent.

In 2008 Arnaum qualified as an Accredited Humanistic Neuro Linguistic Programming Practitioner, which enables her to assist people in making authentic, healing changes that become evident in daily living.

Web:  www.parentingsolutions.com.au   Email: arnaum@parentingsolutions.com.au

 

Tim Tam Balls – Recipe of the Month

Tim Tim Balls
They’re an Aussie favourite, no matter which way you look at it, you can’t beat a Tim Tam!

Quick & easy, this fabulous recipe only needs three ingredients!

Makes 22 Large Balls

You’ll need:

1 x Packet Tim Tams
1 x 250gm Block Philadelphia Cream Cheese
1 x 375gm Cooking Chocolate (Milk/Dark)

Method:
Step 1: Crush the Tim Tams (we used a food processor, but by hand works fine)

Step 2: Add softened cream cheese and mix thoroughly

Step 3: Roll into balls. (1 teaspoon of mix)

Step 4: Roll balls in melted chocolate and refrigerate until set.

Step 5:  Try to say no after just one!

Who’s tried them and what did you think?!

PRODUCT RECALL: Target Baby Turnover Socks

Baby turnover socks

Target Australia Pty Ltd—Baby Turnover Socks (Two Pack)

PRA number: 2013/13686
Date published: 6th August 2013

Product description

Baby 2 pack turnover socks
Birth – 3 years

Identifying features

Keycode blue: 49687064, 49687071, 49687088
Keycode pink: 49686852, 49686869, 49686876

What are the defects?

It has been identified that the motif, which is a small part, could be removed by an infant.

What are the hazards?

The motif, if removed during use, poses a potential ingestion/inhalation hazard to young children.

Dates available for sale

  • 1st July 2010 – 11th July 2013

Where the product was sold

  • Nationally

Traders who sold this product

Target Australia Pty Ltd

Supplier

Target Australia Pty Ltd

Supplier’s web site

http://www.target.com.au

What should consumers do?

Target recommends that customers immediately cease using the products and return them to any Target or Target Country store for a full refund.

Advertisements and supporting documentation

 Media Release.pdf (263.1 KB) Recall Notice.pdf (249.9 KB)

Free Parenting Seminar – Breastfeeding: The Joys and Challenges

Are you a new parent or soon to be a parent?  Want to know more about breastfeeding?

Find out what’s involved and how to manage.

Come and hear about:

  • breastfeeding and how it works
  • common problems and how to manage them
  • living and working while breastfeeding
  • how partners,family and friends can help.

Babies, partners and supporters welcome

For further information contact Parenting SA

For information about breatfeeding go to www.cyh.com

Please note: Another seminar on ‘Breastfeeding: The Joys and Challenges’ is being held on Wednesday 7 August at the Hopgood Lecture Theatre, Noarlunga http://breastfeeding7august.eventbrite.com.au

Is Kate Facing Unfair Public Pressure and Judgement by Choosing Hypnotherapy?

When the Duchess of Cambridge reportedly pulled out of the ‘society wedding of the year’, concerned that her labour was close, the British media’s speculation reached fever pitch.

Yet when it comes to the birth itself, Kate’s plans have attracted some very public sneers.  She’d reportedly like a natural delivery surrounded by family, with hypnotherapy and even a birthing pool.  What’s so wrong with that?

Quite a few high profile journalists and social commentators seem determined to convince us that Kate is living in a dream world. Seriously.  I think it’s fantastic that she is opting for a natural delivery.  She might have married a prince in the perfect fairytale wedding but she’s still a real woman and is more than entitled to try for a natural birth. Trust me, after using hypnotherapy to get me through my two labours, it’s hardly going to be a fairytale!

She’s not alone either.  A lot of women get laughed at when they suggest they’d like to try for a natural labour and avoid the epidural altogether.  I did.  A lot.  People didn’t realise they were doing it half the time.  Trust me, I noticed.

Listen, I’m not going to make out it was easy.  It wasn’t easy.  It was tough at times, but it was incredibly powerful.  INCREDIBLY.

So how did I get to this decision?  As a pack-a-day smoker for over 20 years, to my own delight (and trust me, surprise!!) I gave up smoking one day about six years ago by listening to a hypnotherapy CD.  I was skeptical.  Very skeptical.  I’d always believed the mind’s a powerful tool so I was determined to make it a success.  Let’s face it, if I could do THAT, I could make it through childbirth without an epidural. Surely! Thousands of women had done it before me and they’d survived.  I mean, the pain can’t be THAT bad can it?

For me, it was about wanting to feel the contractions, feel when to push and just be proactive throughout the birth.  Maybe it was the control freak in me.  Just maybe.  Either way it was my choice and one that got my husband’s and midwive’s full support. Trust me, I wasn’t after a medal, and an epidural wasn’t completely out of the equation, I just wanted to give it a go and see if I could do it.  It was MY DECISION and despite the sneers and sniggers from the older generation around me (and so many men who just didn’t get it … “You’re stupid, take the drugs” they’d say), I was determined to give it a red hot go!  And I did.  And it was nothing short of frigging powerful!  It wasn’t a walk in the park, but it WAS so totally amazing. So empowering. So downright WONDERFUL!

So for Kate, why do we feel the need to criticise her, and indeed every other woman who dares to dream of a positive birth experience?  Shouldn’t we be celebrating her courage and wishing her well, rather than putting her down and doubting her before she’s even started?

Birth should be an amazing day in any woman’s life but sadly for more and more women it’s become something to dread.  Sometimes traumatic, sometimes unpleasant and often feared.

Let’s celebrate the birthing process and hypnotherapy as a powerful way to encourage women to aim for a peaceful, relaxed and calm birthing environment and a positive and empowering birth experience.  Either way, we are amazing creatures and deserve to be given the opportunity to decide the approach we’d like to take.  It might not go to plan, it might change somewhat, heck it might go pear-shaped. However it goes, at least we gave it a go.  Who knows, we might even get the birth we wanted.  How incredible would that be?

From one mum to another, well done on your decision Kate, and either way, however it pans out, you’ll do great!

Have you used hypnotherapy in your labour and how did you find it?

But Hang On, Where’s My Epidural?

birth story

On the morning of my 38 week obstetrician appointment I woke up at 7am with an overwhelming urge to drop the kids off at the pool [my gen Y sister told me about that saying!]. While on the toilet, I noticed some bleeding which I recognized to be my ‘show’.  Fortuitously, Mark had taken that very day off for us to finalise the nursery so I bounded out and gave him a blow by blow account of my morning so far…at which point I felt a tightening across my swollen abdomen. Did I say swollen? Forgive me, I meant ENORMOUS. I had gained 20 kilos so far [contrary to more lies about the average woman only gaining 12 kilos during pregnancy]. In the time that it took me to explain, in great detail, what my show looked like, I’d had another tightening. Hmmm… these seem to be regular? Let’s time them. Hon, am I doing this right? Wow. I think this baby may come today. Put on the kettle hon, and I’ll just call the hospital [as my birthing classes had told me].

“Hello, it’s Tania P speaking. I’m actually not booked in for another couple of weeks but I woke up half an hour ago and had a poo and had some blood which I think was my show and now I’m getting this strange tightening which I THINK might be contractions, so my husband’s making me a cup of tea but I just thought I should touch base with you” I remember my voice had a sort of ‘lilt’ to it.

“Yes Tania, that all sounds great. How far apart did you say those tightening were?”

“Well they WERE every four minutes, but now they’re every three – that’s right isn’t it hon?” I’m practically singing by now… because I’m thinking – I can do this EASY.

Silence.

“Tania, how far away from the hospital are you?”

“About 20 minutes in peak hour, which it is right now – why?”

“I’d like you to come in straight away” the midwife’s voice took on an almost unnatural calm and I vaguely remember wondering why she was speaking to me like a mental patient.

“Ok, well I have an appointment there at 2.15 anyway so I’ll finish my cup of tea, get organised and come on in”

“No Tania, just grab your essentials and come now. We’ll be waiting for you.”

So, I call mum and tell her the entire story of the morning and that I’ll be heading into the hospital soon and then head for my shower [maybe I was skipping?] and it is just as I have stripped naked that I am hit with the most excruciating pain I had felt [so far] in my life. I fall to the floor on all fours and scream a guttural cry that I had read only native women had ever used. Mark runs in and is terrified by the sight he is facing which is, a naked, 80 kilo woman on all fours with bed hair and a massive distended abdomen skimming the tiles screaming like an animal.

In this time my mum has called back to tell me that she had a dressing gown for me and would I like to pick it up on the way. She is surprised when I come to the phone, hysterical, but is calm when she tells me “it’s OK Tan, you can do it and I’ll see you at the hospital”. IT’S OK TAN. The f*ck it is.

I CRAWL to the bedroom and put on whatever I had discarded onto the floor from the night before. I still have bed hair, sleep in my eyes and furry teeth when I get into the car to face the peak hour traffic on the way to the hospital.  And here’s where the fun really starts.

Our chosen hospital was a private hospital which resembles a 5 star hotel. It has a cafe at the entrance which at 8.40 in the morning was full of gorgeous and fresh interns, doctors and nurses. Mark pulls up OUT THE FRONT of that café, puts on the hazards and helps me out of the car. I am unable to walk properly due to the almost heart stopping contractions which are coming every one and half a minutes. So my gait is not dissimilar to an ape. Nor is my face. Gorgeous doctors are looking.

In my memory they may have even been pointing and gasping as the receptionist RUNS out of the hospital with a wheelchair and yells, dramatically ‘we’ve got a pusher!’

child birth

I’m feeling better from the moment I’m through those doors and comforted further as two midwives meet me in the lobby [yes, it’s a LOBBY] and one wheels me, while the other wheels a trolley chock full of every medical supply you would need. I find it weird that the birthing suite is clearly ‘BYO’ [I found out later it was in case they needed to deliver my baby in that very same lobby, outside the café with the gorgeous people] but I don’t ask. I can’t ask. I can’t speak. I just groan. A LOT.
We finally get into the suite and they get me out of the wheelchair and on to the bed. Bottoms off and baby monitor strapped onto my belly at which point, I remember my birthing class advice and say “I’ll have my epidural now”. Midwife #1 steals a glance across my belly at Midwife #2 and then says ever so gently “Oh darling, your baby’s coming now”. WHAT THE F*CK???

At this stage I start to panic. BIG TIME. The pain is excruciating. It feels like my body is being torn apart from the inside out. They offer me gas. Gas. Whatever. I have the mouth piece and I make that bastard sing… for what it’s worth which is not much. The pain is so bad, so unnaturally excruciating that I’m sure there’s something wrong. I’m convinced in fact. No-one, NO-ONE, ever told me it would hurt THAT much and that quickly. Where was my 8 hour labour that came in stages? And why did no-one tell me that it is even harder to not push than push?

No-one broke it down and said it feels like you’re DYING. And you know, to this day, women keep telling that lie! When I break out my birth story, in all its glorious detail, in a group of women to an expectant mother, they gather together and try to shut me down. Shushing me like a gaggle of geese. “Don’t scare her!” “Don’t tell her that, it’s not THAT bad” “Why would you SAY that??” Really girls? Because it’s the TRUTH!!! It’s terrifyingly painful. It feels like you can’t go on. It feels like you couldn’t possibly survive such a traumatic experience. You are weak with exertion and screaming with fear and pain. That is what having a baby is like for a lot of women. Did I forget the moment I held my gorgeous new son in my arms? F*ck no. I still had to deliver the placenta and THEN I had to be stitched up because I needed to be cut and I needed to be cut because that HOLE IS NOT BIG ENOUGH!!!!

So, from go to whoah my labour took about 2 hours. I woke at 7.00am facing a normal day and Nathan was born at 9.40am. No cups of tea, no relaxing in the bath, no back rubbing, no breathing, no epidural. Stefan came much the same way.

Dear first-time, expectant mum, I am not really trying to scare you. Having my sons was the greatest thing I have ever done in my life. The entire, uncomfortable journey of pregnancy and childbirth IS miraculous and exhilarating and awe inspiring. It is, unquestionably, worth every bit of it. But it hurts and it’s scary and I’m fortunate that my story doesn’t include the need for other scary things like cesareans and needles the length of your forearm in your spine and breach babies and prem births etc, etc. I just think if you HEAR real life stories from real women who are honest and brutal in their account, and you head into your 38th week expecting the worst… then anything better than that may just make it not terrifying. Maybe bearable. Perhaps even wonderful.

So to break it down, my top ten bits of real advice:

  1. Ask for an epidural at 38 weeks
  2. Pack a camera [disposable if need be] in your hospital bag
  3. Have something gorgeous to wear on hand wherever you are so you’re not mistaken for a gorilla on arrival
  4. Don’t bother with that cup of tea if you’re having cramps every 4 minutes
  5. Prepare your partner to see you begging, screaming, crying and in excruciating pain. I have found so many partners did not expect to be affected by seeing a person they love so much in so much pain, without being able to help
  6. If you’re pushing, getting the head out is the worst. Go hard and listen to your midwives. It really does sting but the shoulders are easier and then you’re done. Except for the placenta. But that’s a walk in the park comparatively.
  7. If you find yourself without an epidural [makes my eyes water just thinking about it], then take the gas. It barely took the edge off for me, but it did help me to ‘not push’ which the midwives may ask of you
  8. Don’t bother to ask your obstetrician to ‘sew the whole thing up’ while they’re down there ‘cause you won’t need it anymore… take it from me, they won’t do it
  9. Pack something alcoholic in your hospital bag. At least one of you will want a drink after that baby comes out
  10. Be prepared to fall in love… but don’t be surprised if it doesn’t happen the moment they put your just-born, screaming, covered in blood and goo baby on your chest, still attached to the umbilical cord. It may take a minute for you to catch your breath x

 

This post originally appeared at Seventies Baby – a gloves-off perspective of womanhood, parenting and modern family life in a world obsessed with being perfect and politically correct. It has been republished with full permission.

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  • 10 Parenting Rules – and I broke them all

    by on June 11, 2013 - 37 Comments

    Confession. I was one self-righteous, know-it-all bitch Before Children [BC]. It’s true. I knew it ALL. Anything wrong with a kid? It’s their mum’s fault. Sometimes their dad’s. But mainly mum… because she CHOSE the dad after all. In my, far from humble, opinion parents were entirely responsible for everything their kids did, thought, said […]

  • Tim Tam Balls - Recipe of the Month

    by on August 9, 2013 - 9 Comments

    They’re an Aussie favourite, no matter which way you look at it, you can’t beat a Tim Tam! Quick & easy, this fabulous recipe only needs three ingredients! Makes 22 Large Balls You’ll need: 1 x Packet Tim Tams 1 x 250gm Block Philadelphia Cream Cheese 1 x 375gm Cooking Chocolate (Milk/Dark) Method: Step 1: […]

  • Win a Britax Strider Compact & Steelcraft Infant Carrier valued at $1,128

    by on July 1, 2013 - 1262 Comments

    Thanks to our gorgeous friends at Britax & Steelcraft, we’re giving one lucky member a Britax Strider Compact & Steelcraft Infant Carrier. Total value $1,128 Congratulations Rachel M – you’re the lucky winner!  Please check your inbox for full details on how to claim your prize! The Britax Strider Compact (RRP $799.00) is more lightweight […]

  • Children's Panadol Recall: 1-5 Years Suspension Recalled for Quality Reasons

    by on December 5, 2013 - 0 Comments

    Two batches of Children’s Panadol 1–5 years suspension dispatched by GlaxoSmithKline between September and November have been recalled for quality reasons. PRA number: 2013/13888 Date published: 5th December 2013 Product description GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), in consultation with the TGA, is recalling two batches of Children’s Panadol 1-5 years suspension from pharmacies and hospitals as a small proportion of bottles […]

  • The Only Teacher's Christmas Gift Guide You'll Need. EVER.

    by on November 26, 2013 - 1 Comments

    Christmas Gift Guide for Teachers Do you have little ones [or big ones!] in school? Have you dropped them off at their class every day and wondered, with awe, how any sane person could choose to spend 6 hours a day with as many as 30 kids at a time? As we get closer to […]