The doctors have told me for the last 6 weeks that Poppy would be early – I’ve had a lot of fluid, she has a syndrome blah blah blah im 39+ weeks and im STILL waiting! Ive been waiting for weeks and NOTHING IS HAPPENING!
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Under normal circumstances this waiting period would be spent sorting baby clothes, building cribs/travel systems, triple checking you have everything and ‘nesting’! This isn’t very normal though, we don’t know if shes going to make it to birth, survive delivery or ever come home and we dont have any of those things bought or set up because we don’t want the emotional pain of having to ‘get rid’ -The cot is still in pieces from when Megs moved out of it and we have the smallest box containing a handful of vests, baby grows and outfits under our bed “if we need it” ! I could sit around literally waiting or I could keep busy, have fun and make the most of life with Ethan and Megan before Poppies grand arrival!
So here’s what I HAVE been doing to pass the time as we await labour and delivery:

BAKING – 
In pursuit of becoming a domestic goddess I spent some time this week Baking . Firstly Banana bread after getting a huge bag from the market for £1 (WHAT A BARG!!!) and then a blackberry and Raspberry crumble with freshly picked blackberries with our own little hands – the kids were sure to eat plenty too. Nathan always seems in shock when I bake – maybe I should do it a little more

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WALKING – 
My parents have been staying with us for a few days in anticipation of Miss Poppy, everyone was sure she would be here now, but unfortunately their visit was a little premature so we went on lots of walks and adventures to try kick start things! 5miles around Leeds city centre/train ride and 3miles around Roundhey park – both exhausting days, fun and to no avail.
The kids had a mint time on the train and exploring the city and then on the parks , picking blackberries and fighting over who would walk “gangmas dog”. Its always great to have family time, chats and seeing the kids having fun with no time limit on the day. Although Ii was slightly disappointed that I ended up trashed with dead legs from all the walking and no baby on its way I was so glad of the fun we had and seeing their jolly little faces having fun with their Grandma and Granddad.
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NATURAL INDUCTION – 
I’ve tried almost everything to no avail! We need no details here but curries, walks etc

 

It looks like she’s keeping us waiting and will be with us in her own sweet time, the more I think of her the more I feel shes so much like miss Megs “independent diva” type. I do worry that the increase of still birth goes up the longer I carry her but I hope that it just means this longer wait is because she is becoming stronger for life on the outside. I’m grateful for family fun and laughs and living in a place where we have so many great places to visit, they’ve all taken my mind off the impending labour and any other worries of whats in store afterwards. Its definitely easier to remain positive when you’re having fun together and when shes already proving the Drs wrong with her strength and later arrival, it brings us all a little more hope that other predictions could be off 🙂

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At 6am this morning I was adamant that today was Poppy’s birthday! Instead I ended up being a loner at the LGI …

happy birthday

I woke at 3.30am with back ache – 4.10 – 6am cramps and contractions 3-5mins lasting 50 secs.. YES THIS IS IT! I called the hospital and off we went (after applying my make up and styling my hair of course haha) WHOOOP!

Excitement quickly became the biggest let down when upon examination I was only a mere 1cm – if you’ve been there you know you want to just scream and then feel slightly embarrassed. They decided anyway to admit me to the ward to see if there would be any progress, within a few hrs I had visits from about 7 DRs, turns out were famous at the LGI and everyone knows our story. They all came to meet to me and explain the process and assure us the care plan would be carried out as decided. I appreciated that and felt at ease. Other than some loss the cramps eased and everything halted. So gutting…but when the fruit is ripe im sure she will drop!

With all my dramas with Ethan and Megans births im quite accustomed to being on a maternity ward and monitoring etc thats why this morning I  was extremely saddened and shocked to find that I had a lack of Antenatal care once admitted to the ward. No CTG monitoring, no more examinations, no obs…no visits/checks. I literally was put in a room and other than the Drs acknowledging we were there and they were ready for her that was it!!!  I was literally sat in a side room like a hostage, when I questioned these things they said “oh there will be no change” and “if we monitor and baby shows distress we will have to act and its not good for ‘limited benefit'” – How are they supposed to know if im contracting if they dont check it?? How do they know whats going on when they dont check? It really upset me that I was left to it, not even knowing myself if the pains were doing anything. All my questions were answered when I read the notes upon requesting discharge – “do not monitor baby has lethal abnormalities” – So there we go, a lack of care because once again the medical sector see her ‘not compatible with life’. How ill ever know if my contractions are real again I do not know! Maybe ill just go in when shes crowning…..

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Ethan and Megan enjoyed the morning at the Hospice playing in the sandpit, ball pool and making a mess whilst creating “memory boxes”! They are fantastic and the kids really got into it. The idea is that each of them can put in a lock of Poppy’s hair, photos and generally anything to remember her by. It will be their own special box of memories with their sister.

I did find it quite emotional being there and seeing them talking to the staff about the boxes and their baby. It was also a hopeful visit as we spoke with them and the nurse practitioner there of more options for Poppy too.

Both Nath and I were amazed at how long megs concentrated for – she really got into it:
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Ethan was a bit more freestyle and didn’t take to it straight away but when she showed him the camera “just for him and Megan to take pics of poppy” he was intrigued:
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And the finished products …

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As you can tell Ethan loved the pom poms and glitter

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Megan loved the buttons and feathers

 

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Early this year September became a very exciting month for us all as we anticipated the birth of Smith baby #3! Recently, whilst we still look forward to meeting her, it has become more of a month of anxiety and dread! Who knows what this month holds and who knows how we will feel every September from here on out. We hope it will be a good month but with everything in the mix we really cannot say – it can go either way.

I decided the best way to find joy and to focus on Ethan and Megan was through some planning and goal setting. So iv’e set a couple of educational goals I want to work on with them both and researched some groups, activities and general places we can go together. Ive then planned them into each week so that we know what we are doing and where we are going. This helps me get up each day and go for it, it means we can have some fun, learn and make memories at what can potentially may be a VERY hard month. It also gives others things to do with them to maintain consistency in their lives. Basically on a Monday I hope to have them visit a Museum followed by baking or craft. Tuesday participate in toddler groups/park etc – socializing and playing with others their age and then Weds do some active stuff (swimming or Rock climbing), educational stuff / learning at home and a class (at the mo its looking like Gymnastics).Luckily for me and my new plan, Ethan said today that he wanted to go the “Newseum”.
I’d already checked the weather and for once it was clear and sunny. It didn’t take me long to know the perfect place to make the most of the weather and also visit a “newseum”…Lotherton Hall! I haven’t been in over a year. To be honest its because i’m tight and they started charging for Adults £5 (kids under 5 are free), little did I realise thought that it includes everything and was well worth the 5er! We arrived around 10 and left about 3, we set off exploring the gardens. The kids climbed all over the park and then we visited the Avery’s – they absolutely loved it all. So much fun and I felt so happy seeing them run and squeal from enclosure to enclosure and flap around like little birds. Such fun!
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WP_004859After all that we sat at the picnic tables for lunch and then hit the house! Again I was pleasantly surprised as they had improved it significantly; crafts for them to do (get in Museum and craft – mission accomplished for this Monday), interactive screens and stories and their fave – a dress up room. We had a lot of fun, especially when Megan was mistaken for an Edwardian ghost child as she loitered in costume in the hall. After all the fun we just had time for an ice cream and both were asleep before i’d even left the grounds. Such a wonderful day out and so much fun together…if we can make most days like today I think we will survive!!

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