December 5th 2012

Have you ever thought you were over something? Or that you have learned to live with something? And then from somewhere something comes along and bites you on the arse and you think - crap, I'm not!

To be honest, I always knew that I would have to talk about this in my blog at some point because it has held such precedence in our lives so far. I just didn't think it would be as soon as my second entry.

Two miscarriages later, I found out that I was pregnant with Bethan. Although everybody kept telling me it would be fine, I had this niggling feeling that something bad would happen. And it did. At three days old she was rushed to a neonatal unit to have a 7 hour operation where she had 8cm of her bowel removed. I won't digress but as you can imagine blog, it has had a huge impact on our lives. As testament to her strength, Bethan is doing fabulously well and certainly keeps us on our toes.

Over 2 years and 10 months, and numerous CBT sessions to get over the 'post traumatic stress' AND another baby, later, you would think that the wounds would have healed.

However, last night, I was changing her bum (I know, I know, she should be potty trained by now but she isn't) and I saw what I thought was blood in her poo; a friend of mine also said that it had a blood-like colour to it.  Suddenly, the fear and terror of that period in our lives came flooding back. I summoned Rob immediately from work who wasn't convinced it was blood and against all of his better judgement took Bethan (and the offending nappy) to see our GP. As is customary in this house, whenever there is a medical emergency, we take the temperature of the 'ill' person. (A neonatal hangover exasperated by my fervent reading of the British Red Cross "First Aid" book when I'm on the loo).

Her temperature was fine but immediately I started to catastrophise - all I could think was where this would lead...

I felt depersonalised but carried on with feeding and looking after Baby James ( I swear we will be calling him that when he is 21!).

The phone went.

It was Rob.

The red in Bethan's poo was no more than red food dye from her favourite strawberry jelly. I then felt bad not because of all of the hassle I had caused but because I thought that the GP would be aghast at the fact that I give my little girl strawberry jelly instead of fresh strawberries ( they're not in season anyway).

The trouble I have with aspiring to be an Alpha mum - the mum who has it and does it all, you know, the ones on TV and in newspapers and magazines, is that I always feel guilty and that I will never be as perfect as the mum stood beside me at the school gates. The trouble I have with aspiring to be an Alpha Mum  WITH a child who has been so sick and on death's door, is that I feel even more guilty than the average aspiring Alpha mum because I blame myself when her poo isn't right. This still happens occasionally but we seem to have more solid stools than not! I think my scatological obsession equals (maybe rivals) that of Chaucer's. My mum says that I am a reader of nappies like a Mystic Meg is a reader of tea leaves.

One positive thing to come out of all this is that I realise how bloody blessed I am to have my wonderful wee family.

Oh, and before I went to bed - the paper chains fell down AGAIN!!!! (we keep persevering with them because they look so pretty when they are up!)

ABOVE: The paper chains falling down has become part of our nightly ritual; I will probably start twitching at 7pm each evening in January when the decorations have to come down.

ABOVE: But they look sooo pretty when we stick them back up again!