A Yorkshire based lifestyle & parenting blog written by Claire Chircop.

THIS TIME LAST YEAR I FOUND OUT I WAS PREGNANT.

This time last year I peed on a stick and two little blue lines appeared - From that point on our lives changed forever!



Let me set the scene for you. It was a Wednesday afternoon and I was on my way home from a job interview at a local Doctors surgery when the question ‘where the heck is my period?’ suddenly popped into my head. At this point I didn’t think too much of it as the week prior I’d been taking Norethisterone which is a period delaying tablet I was using to make sure I wouldn’t be on my period on my wedding day - There’s enough stress when it comes to your wedding day & quite frankly I didn’t want Aunt Flo adding to the pressure!

I remember at the time of my Doctors consultation to get the drug, I was advised It may take a little while for my period to come back after finishing the course of tablets, but for the life of me I couldn’t remember how long she’d said. So for my own peace of mind I swung by the supermarket on the way home & picked up a couple of pregnancy tests.

Now I’ve been in this situation before, on quite a few occasions to be honest & they all went a little bit like this… My period would be late, I’d get my hopes up, pee on a stick that came back negative & then there’d be tears and I’d be in a mood for the rest of the day. I wouldn’t like to know how many pregnancy tests I’d taken over the previous three years however it was enough for me to expect this one to come back negative & enough for me to not get upset over it any more.

You can only imagine my face when those two blue lines appeared.


I was in a state of disbelief & was so glad I’d bought two tests so I could do the second one before Dan got home just to be double sure. The stupid thing is that over the following week I’d end up taking six pregnancy tests – We just couldn’t believe it! Turns out sextuple times sure is the magic number!

We kept the pregnancy a secret between the two of us for a couple of weeks before telling both sets of parents a week or so before the wedding… Turns out a good way to take the pressure off getting married, is to have a baby! All wedding worries were well and truly thrown out of the window at this point because even though your wedding day is super important, for us it was nothing in the grand scheme of things of what was to come!

So here we are exactly 365 days later, and what a year it’s been! I’m sure we’ve gone from 2018 to 2019 in the blink of an eye. I’ve now got a husband & a child who is very quickly approaching being four months old – It’s actually crazy how much difference a year makes & I can’t wait to see what changes this year brings.


What were you doing this time last year?

Claire.X

Have you read my previous pregnancy posts?
The First Trimester.
The Second Trimester.
The Third Trimester.

THE FOURTH TRIMESTER.

Well there we have it, three months of having Amelia in our lives & three months of being parents – Fourth trimester… Completed it mate! Over the last ninety days we’ve had ups and downs and I think it’s pretty safe to say the fourth trimester has been a complete learning curve!

The first was okay, second was tiring, third was just darn right uncomfortable, but the fourth trimester by far has been the hardest of them all. Being a parent is really fricken hard, and it’s something not to be sniffed at… Something I’ve definitely learnt over the last ninety days.

Feeding.
My breastfeeding journey was quite short lived and looking back now I really wish I persevered a bit more with it. Hats off to all those mammas that breastfeed, it really is a challenge - I think it’s one of those things where it gets harder before it becomes easier, and for me I think I gave up on it too easily – But my baby’s fed, she’s healthy and she’s putting on weight which is the most important thing… Sod whether it’s from a boob or a bottle. She’s happy, and that’s what matters.

Sleeping.
It’s only within the last few weeks where Amelia has started sleeping through the night. I remember her doing it one night without us really trying and from then we’ve stuck to that previous evening’s routine and it’s worked. I think there’s only been two nights in the last four weeks where we’ve been up through the night, and at the time it’s frustrating because she’s been doing so well, but then you also have to think she’s only three months old – We’ve been incredibly lucky with her sleeping pattern and she’s been doing SO well! After having a bath and a bottle we put her upstairs in the moses basket around half nine and then she’ll go right through till six the next day – She’s a better sleeper than I am!
Admittedly I’ve found it really difficult being able to switch off since having Amelia, and after suffering with a week-long headache and stress I took myself to the doctors… Turns out I was just sleepdeprived and needed a good kip! Typical!


Expectations.
I’ve always known I wanted to be a parent. I remember saying to my friends even in secondary school that I’d much rather have a baby than get married – Eeek! And here I am, Mrs Chircop (yes my name isn’t actually Claire Mac anymore) and I have both! As much as I wanted to be a parent, I knew it was going to be difficult, but I didn’t realise just how hard it was going to be! I’ve been very honest about my parenting journey, because I think it’s necessary to be open & talk about the pressures of being a parent... In short, I didn’t expect parenting to be so hard, but I equally didn’t expect it to be as amazing & as rewarding as it is!

Personality.
She’s started developing her own little personality now, and as she gets older, I’m continuously saying the age she’s presently at is my favourite age! Her first smile reduced both my husband & I to tears - It was honestly one of the best feelings in the world watching her grinning up at us. But now she’s getting older she’s starting to laugh (especially at bath time – she loves splashing) and that’s getting us tearful now. We’re very soppy in our house if you couldn’t tell! Ha.
We’re starting to notice patterns in her emotions and personality now, so we know when play time is and we can get a bit more out of her, but we equally know when it’s time to quit while we’re ahead and enjoy a snuggle before world war three erupts. 


Crying.
This again is something I think gets worse before it gets better. Amelia very rarely cried when she was first born purely because she was asleep all of the time but as she developed quicker mentally than she did physically that’s when the tears started. I was talking to Dan about this the other day, saying that this was probably the hardest time for me being a parent, especially as he was back at work, there’s nothing worse than having a repetitive crying baby, we thought she had colic at one point, but I’m pleased to say if was just an iffy couple of weeks. It was only as she passed the two month mark that I found her crying to lessen. I’m also able to recognise what each cry means now, whether its hunger, tiredness or she just wants a cuddle.

Everyday life.
Everyday life is getting easier week by week, and I actually feel like I’m starting to boss this parenting life. It sounds crazy but at the beginning it felt like I’d never get out the house and take Amelia shopping with me or out for coffee, but now it feels like second nature. The only thing I’d say I’m struggling with is balancing dog mamma & human mamma life, it’s quite difficult for me to get out and walk the pupper with a baby strapped to my chest, especially with a dog who’s as boisterous and as energetic as Willow is, but I’m doing it.
It’s hard, but I’m giving it a good go!


Baby groups.
In hindsight I think we started taking Amelia to baby groups just a little too early. We took her for weekly swimming classes (if you can call them that) from 2 weeks, and baby sensory from 8 weeks. The reason I think we took her too early is literally because she kept falling asleep through everything! She slept solidly through her first four swimming classes & this is the first week she’s managed to stay awake through baby sensory. Saying that it’s been nice for me to get out of the house & surround myself with adults again because it can get quite lonely staying in all day with a baby, even though she is quite lovely!

How am I?
This is a question I’m now asked all of the time, and it’s not just a casual ‘yalright’ anymore it’s now a question of concern. Truthfully I’ve had a few dark moments since giving birth & have cried more often than I care to admit, but I’d never say I suffered with postnatal depression or baby blues. Your body & your hormones go through such a dramatic change during pregnancy & it doesn’t stop once the baby arrives – It’s so easy to see how so many women struggle but thankfully I’ve been doing okay so far. Don’t get me wrong, there are parts of my life I miss & I need to be a little kinder to myself but I think that's only natural considering what I've gone through. 


In the last three months she’s changed so much and it’s an absolute pleasure watching her grow and develop. There really isn’t anything like it! I’m lucky because I’m able to have another nine months off with her before I go back to work & I absolutely can’t wait to see what changes that brings.

Would you like to see more posts of Amelia’s development on the blog? I feel like it’s all I ever talk about now, but in reality, it’s pretty much all I actually do. Now we’re getting a bit more mobile I’d love to do some baby friendly restaurant reviews & days out, heck I’d even like to write more beauty content over here because I love makeup & skincare and being able to make myself feel like a hot mamma. Let me know!

Claire.X