5 Things That Make Me Happy

As I write this in my exhausted state, I ponder over the events of the last week.

There are ongoing issues within our family that have been a constant worry and to be frank, a hell of a lot of stress for months now and so that’s always in the back of your head.

My beautiful son has also been exhibiting some seriously obnoxious symptoms of the “terrible twos” and so that’s been fun.

But in amongst all the chaos of food being thrown at me and the phone ringing all day, I’m still filled with hope and love from all of the other good things happening all around me, all of the time. So I thought I’d share some of that with you all now, both trivial and meaningful… I mean it is Friday and that’s the happiest day of the week for most so why not.

5. Can we get a HALLELUJAH for Ben & Jerry’s Karamel Sutra Core Ice Cream! Seriously it is ridiculous how good this is… And by good I mean LIFE-CHANGING!!! Calorific? Indeed… But worth every spoonful!

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4. NETFLIX is literally my life right now… Especially when they added season 10 of the Big Bang Theory (my absolute fave show). I watch it every night in bed and it has become my night time ritual and the best way to unwind from the days events. Netflix & Chill is an actual thing people!

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3. Aldi Luxury Fragrance Candles are just another of the brilliant things Aldi offers… Including Prosecco Popsicles and £12 bottles of Gin (I promise I don’t have a drinking problem). The candles come in a variety of fragrances but my fave is ‘No 1 Lime, Basil and Mandarin’. They are £3.99 and an absolute steal!

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2. Winter is coming thick and fast and with it the cold, dark nights… As well as the beautiful winter skies at sunset. Now call me crazy, but this is my favourite time of year. Nothing beats being all warm and cosy in your house while the temperature is dropping outside.

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1. My boys… And by boys I mean my husband Michael and our son Matthew. They are the best two people in my world. My husband and I are coming up on our 6th wedding anniversary this Sunday, but have been together for 16 years, and even after all these years he still treats me like a queen… Even more so since our little boy came into our lives. They are my absolute joy & reason for life!!!

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Words Of The Week – #3

So call me an old romantic but this past week I’ve been feeling so much love for my hubby.

He’s the best person in my life (including my beautiful little boy) and sometimes it just hits me that I am bloody lucky to have him!

On that basis, this weeks theme is LOVE 💕…

Are you feeling all warm and fuzzy in your heart??? Bet you are! 💞


Through The Lens – August Best Bits

As I’ve mentioned before, I am a photographer and I honestly love my job so any opportunity to pick up the camera and snap away is taken, no questions asked!

August was super busy and exciting for us and so I thought I’d share some of my favourite images, taken over the course of the month.

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I’m a sucker for a flower shot & always have fresh flowers in the house so perfect opportunity to get a shot like this! Seriously… How pretty are Roses???

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We enjoyed a day out at the park on the 5th of August when it was unusually warm.

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My boy and his daddy, as usual, were joined at the hip!

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My super handsome nephew started Primary School in August. Proud Aunty moment indeed!

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This is a random one but I wanted to show off my new print… Rose Gold, Marble, a cute little Succulent plant & Coffee… It really doesn’t get much better than this!

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The biggest and most excting part of the month was when my beautiful little Prince turned 2!

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I couldn’t be prouder of this little warrior for everything he has and continues to overcome.

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He is the best thing I’ve ever done in my life!

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And coming full circle, I’m ending on a pretty image of some roses I had on  my desk… Colourful, fragrant & so much fun to photograph.


Letter To My Son

Dear Matthew,

It is a cold and dreary August day that I am writing this. It occurred to me when I was thinking about what I was going to write, that you may not be able to read it. That thought made me very sad, but I know that you will be surrounded by people who love you and are willing to read it to you so I think it’s still important to say what I want to say.

Before you came along, daddy and I had tried ever so hard and for such a long time to have children. There was a lot of heartache in our lives and for such a long time, we didn’t think it would ever be possible.

We made peace with that fact. We knew that our love for each other was so strong that we would be able to live a happy life together, just us two.

I still firmly believe that to be true. Your daddy is the best person I have ever known, and I can’t imagine spending my life with anybody else. He is truly my soulmate.

However, after succumbing to the fact that it would indeed be, just us two, we were given the miraculous news that we were in fact expecting you.

Matthew I will never be able to put into words how I felt at that moment. It was so beautiful and so monumental that it is a moment I will remember until my dying day.

I first felt you kick on the day that I became 20 weeks pregnant. It was a tiny flutter in response to some music I was playing to you through earphones on my tummy, and to this day I still wonder if it were a good or bad response to my music choice.

On the evening of August 14th at 23 weeks pregnant I went into labour with you.

My body failed both of us. This is something that I will never forgive myself for.

You were born 5 days later, small, fragile and fighting for your life.

My brain couldn’t process that you were here and my baby, i’ll be honest. It took me a few days, even weeks to feel a real connection to you. But when it did eventually happen it was like the planets had all aligned and I was tasked with being your keeper and protector.

You were my sole thought all day… every day!

I yearned to take you home and be able to hold you in my arms for hours on end without having to ask permission. It hurt my heart every night when I had to leave you.

When we eventually were able to take you home, I felt my heart swell and I maintain that it was quite simply the happiest moment of my life. You were finally mine and daddy’s. It was bliss.

Over the months you grew to be the most beautiful and happy baby I had ever come across.

Your smile would seriously light up a room, and despite it being a much less frequent thing now, it still does.

I cried when you crawled for the first time. I cried when you walked for the first time. I cried when you uttered “dada” for the first time. I cried when you uttered “mama” for the first time.

I cried and continue to cry happy tears for all the “firsts” in your life.

I am so immensely proud of you that there are no words worthy of the emotion.

You are so clever and so cheeky, and I truly am gobsmacked by how much of your daddy I see in you every day. It makes me happy to know that you are mimicking so much of his personality, because it means that you will grow to be the best kind of person just like him.

I love you with every fibre of my being and I will continue to do so until I take my last breath on this earth.

Keep being as special as you are my wonderful boy.

Mummy x

 

 


Trying Trying Trying… Pt 3

Apologies for this follow up post taking so long. It’s been a crazy few weeks and time has quite literally gotten away from me. We have all been struck down with every sick and flu virus going and even now, I still feel like i’m at deaths door.

Anyway…

Michael and I were just going through the pregnancy motions. Picking up bits and pieces every time we were out shopping, and excitedly imagining  the amazing potential few months ahead of us.

I started showing at the start of August.

The tiniest little bump started to emerge and my clothes began to feel so uncomfortable that I resorted to wearing leggings with every outfit (one of the best parts of being pregnant)!

On the 14th of August I was attending my cousins Hen Party. I felt quite run down, but nothing out of the ordinary. Just tired.

It was later on that night, after going to the bathroom that I felt a bit strange. TMI moment coming here, but I had a funny discharge on my underwear and something just felt wrong.

I put it down to just feeling tired and thought I might have been coming down with the flu. My bones were aching and I just wanted to lie down. So I went home.

I awoke the next day feeling even worse, and I was still having a strange discharge.

It wasn’t until dinner time that night that I noticed something completely out of the ordinary.

I was having a tightening in my stomach, that kept coming and going. So after about 20 minutes I decided to pay attention and time it. They were coming every 10 minutes and were lasting around about 30-40 seconds. No pain as such, just a weird cramping sensation.

After speaking to Michael, I decided to call Midwifery Triage to get their opinion on the matter. The lady I spoke to was lovely. She said it sounded like i might have a urine infection but advised me to head up just for a quick check.

We casually made our way to the hospital, thinking at the very worst, I would be sent home with an antibiotic.

We were shown into an examination room and a midwife, along with a junior doctor came in and asked me to lay on the bed and prepare for an internal examination just to check everything was ok.

This is already an extremely uncomfortable thing to do, not necessarily in terms of pain but with regards to your dignity…

It is quite simply left at the door.

So i reluctantly got myself ready for examination and lay back counting the seconds till it was over… when I was frightened within an inch of my life by the shriek that came from the midwife.

“Stop stop stop”! She instructed the junior doctor.

“Do not go any further… Slowly and carefully remove the speculum”!

She then ever so calmly made her way to the top of the bed where Michael and I were waiting to find out what was going on. She gently pushed past Michael and pressed a red button on the wall behind him and an alarm sounded off in the corridor.

That’s when she bent down next to me and said, “Danielle don’t be alarmed, but we can see your waters and it would appear you are in pre-term labour. The room is about to fill with a number of medical staff, but they are all here to help so just try to stay calm”.

Calm???

Not possible!

The next few minutes, hours and days were a blur. I was medicated to the max with steroids, antibiotics and all other sorts of drugs to try and slow down the labour. I managed a further 4 days holding onto Matthew before he was born, breech and weighing a mere 1 pound 9 ounces.

My angel was laid onto my hip for a full minute before being whisked away from me, for what would turn out to be the most difficult 4 and a half months of our lives…

But that’s a whole other chapter…


Trying Trying Trying… Pt 2

In April of 2015 I had a minor meltdown. 

I was home by myself and felt an overwhelming rush of emotions that resulted in a good 8 hours of self-loathing and depression. 

It was a culmination of years of failed attempts and getting pregnant and crazy hormones. 

My husband came home from work and spent his entire evening trying to console me. It did eventually work, but it was definitely a dark day for me, and was a stark realisation of how I was really feeling on the inside. 

I should also mention that I had been suffering from Gallstones as a result of my weight loss and my attacks were becoming more and more frequent. 

On the 2nd of May 2015 I was blue lighted to Wishaw General Hospital with a sever Gallstones attack. I was admitted to the Surgical Receiving Ward and was being prepped for emergency surgery. 

The nurse Lynn came and took some bloods from me and I had to provide a urine sample, just to make sure that everything was all in order before they started the procedure. I was told it would be an hour before I would get my results back, so I sent my hubby away to get himself some food. 

Minutes after he left, my nurse and the registrar came over and pulled the curtains around my bed. I remember feeling incredibly nervous after seeing the serious look on their faces. 

“Danielle we have the results of your urine sample and it would appear you are pregnant”

Well…  Of all the things I expected to hear, I can honestly say that was not even on the list. It was so surreal and so unexpected. But when I began to think about it, I had been having some pregnancy symptoms, including nausea in the morning and sore boobs, something that I hadn’t experienced any of the other times. 

However, my nurse advised me that the urine sample isn’t always 100% so they would have to wait on my bloods coming back to make sure. She advised that this would show my HCG levels (pregnancy hormone), and we would be looking, based on my last period, for them to be around 500-600 mlU/ml.

So while waiting I called my hubby and told him he had to come back,  I didn’t want to blurt it out over the phone.

When he returned I told him our news, as all of the surgical nursing staff hovered nearby to watch his reaction. It wasn’t the fairy-tale setting by any means, but it was a moment in our lives that I will never forget.

While we sat and chatted excitedly about the potential pregnancy, Lynn came over with the results of my blood test. My HCG levels were 32,000 mlU/ml. Significantly higher than the minimum levels Lynn told me was required to confirm the pregnancy. I still have the paperwork with the results on it in our memory box.

So no surgery… And home to celebrate we went!

The next few months were pretty normal. I had my 12 week scan and saw my little button on the screen for the first time. It was wonderful watching our baby grow throughout each different scan. We found out on our 20 weeks scan that we were having a boy, a feeling I had felt since we found out we were expecting.

We were over the moon. We would soon have a son… In fact it would be sooner than any of us would ever have anticipated.


Trying, Trying, Trying…

My husband and I have been together (off and on) for 16 years. We were High School Sweethearts. He is the best person I have ever known. Kind, considerate and everything else in between.

I knew, despite the many fall-outs, that he was my person. By that I mean, even on the occasions where we had called it quits, I still wanted to tell him everything I was going through, even if that were about another (I say it loosely) “love interest”.

It was then that I realised, there is nobody better than this man. He’s as good as it gets!

We were married in 2011 and immediately began trying to get pregnant (something that we would have happily accepted even before marriage).

It was the most frustrating period of our lives, and despite doing everything right (buying ovulation kits and working out all of the nonsensical mathematics of it), it just didn’t happen.

In fact, we just struck out, time and time again.

On one occasion I woke up in dreadful pain. Bleeding heavily and doubled over with cramp in my stomach. Michael being the angel he is, took me to A&E and there I was advised that I may be having a Miscarriage.

This happened again.

And again.

It was heartbreaking.

My doctor advised me that we were to keep trying. It can take time. He didn’t want to even consider IVF until I was 30.

By this time however, we had given up. We spoke at length about whether or not we would be enough for each other. Just us two.

I felt strongly that Michael and I could have a wonderful life on our own. He did too, but he clung on to hope that one day it would happen for us. He’s like that. It’s one of the things I love most about him, but also one of his most annoying qualities. I just wanted to put an end to it and enjoy our lives as they were. For at least a short period of time we did this.

However, in my head I needed a distraction from it all.

I joined my local Weight Watchers and began a healthy eating/ exercise regime. It was a great focus for me and I found that I simply forgot all about our baby making woes.

I lost a great deal of weight within a very short period of time, and backed up this weight loss with a pretty rigorous exercise regime.

I felt the best I had in years. I was happy and I was content.

It’s amazing how looking back you realise how much you were in fact kidding yourself.