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Oh Me, Oh Mãe

Crying Again – I’m So Dumb (31st July 2020)

Well, after rereading over my hashtags to make sure there were no mistakes I now feel SUPER awkward about posting this, but awkwardness is not a new feeling for me so here goes nothing…

Crying Again – I’m So Dumb (31st July 2020)
 
#SoManyThingsIWantToSay
#YetSoManyThingsIDoNotWantToSay
#IEmailedPicturesToMyselfWithTheEmailSubjectsBeingTooSelfishToBeAMotherAndImSoDumb
#SoDumbBecauseIDoNotHaveToWorkForNowAndYetIAmSoStressedOut
#AndIDecidedToMakeABlogWhichIJustWantToQuit
#ButIHaveInvestedTimeAndMoneyInItAlreadyAndDoNotWantToQuit
#SelfishBecauseIWantToWorkOnMyStuff
#SureItIsAboutMotherhoodNowButIDoNotKnow
#INeedToOrganiseMyTimeBetter
#ThisMorningIHadACoupleOfNapsButISwearIJustGoToSleepAndBStartsCrying
#ThisHappensInTheNightThough
#SheGoesToSleepThenSheIsCryingAgainAMinuteLaterThoughReallyItIsAWhile
#ICalledTheDoctorsAgainThisAfternoonAsIWasGettingWorriedAboutHerSpotsAndRash
#TheySaidToTryADifferentCreamAndAnotherOneWhichSheWouldGiveUsAPrescriptionFor
#TiagoWentToGetItAndThenBJustStartedToCry
#IChangedHerNappyAndBottleFedHerExpressedMilkAsDoNotLikeBreastfeedingHerAtTheMomentBecauseIDoNotWantToTouchHerNeckAndRashMuch
#IThoughtTheMilkWouldBeEnoughAndThenICouldPump
#ButItWasNotEnoughAndSheWasJustCrying
#IShouldHaveExpressedWhileIBottleFedHer
#TheFirstWeekWhenWeWereHomeBHadBeenFedSoTiagoWentFoodShopping
#ILayMyHeadDownFor10SecondsThenSheStartedToCryAndDidNotStopUntilHeGotHome
#SeeingHerSkinJustMakesMeFeelSoGuilty
#IfICouldGoBackInTimeIWouldMakeSureSheAlwaysHadABibOnOrMilkWasCleanedFromHerNeck
#IFeelLikeSuchABadMumAndMaybeIAm
#TheOtherWeekISaidToAGroupThatNowIHaveHadABabyICanFinallyPutMyselfFirst
#WhichMakesNoSenseAsBComesFirst
#INeedToChange
#DoingMyArtKeepsMeSaneSoMaybeIJustNeedToBeMoreOrganised
#IShouldNotBeWastingWaterOnTears
#IKeepGettingDehydratedAndCryingDoesNotHelpMyMilkProduction
 

#IEmailedPicturesToMyselfWithTheEmailSubjectsBeingTooSelfishToBeAMotherAndImSoDumb

I probably should have called the image ‘Being Too Selfish To Be A Mother – I’m So Dumb‘, but that really felt uncomfortable. I did two sets of pictures, but 5 minutes apart; the photo above is from the second set. I was going to choose another from the first set, but it seemed unnecessary.

#SoDumbBecauseIDoNotHaveToWorkForNowAndYetIAmSoStressedOut #AndIDecidedToMakeABlogWhichIJustWantToQuit
#ButIHaveInvestedTimeAndMoneyInItAlreadyAndDoNotWantToQuit

I was frustrated, because this is the first time in years that I haven’t had to ‘work work’ (as in have a job), but I’ve given myself more work by making a blog. At this point I was quite far behind with posting stuff, but I feel better now that I’m catching up with myself. I’ll feel better when I’m posting more in real time and not everyday like I am trying to do at the moment.

#SelfishBecauseIWantToWorkOnMyStuff
#SureItIsAboutMotherhoodNowButIDoNotKnow
#INeedToOrganiseMyTimeBetter

Not having to ‘work work’ gives me more time to work on my art stuff, but days are quite long in a weird way. At this point I was trying to do blog posts in the day, but now I usually wait until Tiago has some downtime in the evening so he can look after B and I can do a bit of my work. I feel like I’m more productive in a shorter amount of time as I can’t faff as much anymore.

#ThisMorningIHadACoupleOfNapsButISwearIJustGoToSleepAndBStartsCrying
#ThisHappensInTheNightThough
#SheGoesToSleepThenSheIsCryingAgainAMinuteLaterThoughReallyItIsAWhile

I close my eyes and then she cries. I tell her ‘you’ve just been fed, go back to bed’ (rhyme), but then I look at my phone and see that it’s been 3 hours since I fed her. Sometimes it has been 5 hours and it honestly feels like a minute.

#ICalledTheDoctorsAgainThisAfternoonAsIWasGettingWorriedAboutHerSpotsAndRash
#TheySaidToTryADifferentCreamAndAnotherOneWhichSheWouldGiveUsAPrescriptionFor

It was a steroid cream, and in the end we didn’t use it as the pharmacist seemed a bit hesitant about it because B was so young. We tried sudocrem (as the doctor said we could) and it made a big difference, otherwise I would have tried the cream that we got given. I would have used it sooner if it had been recommended before, but she initially suggested a different one. Typically sudocrem was the only one that we had at home already.

#TiagoWentToGetItAndThenBJustStartedToCry
#IChangedHerNappyAndBottleFedHerExpressedMilkAsDoNotLikeBreastfeedingHerAtTheMomentBecauseIDoNotWantToTouchHerNeckAndRashMuch

Her skin was so bad that I really didn’t want to hold her in any way that I thought might hurt her more. I should have fed her in the lying down position, but I only mastered that recently.

#IThoughtTheMilkWouldBeEnoughAndThenICouldPump
#ButItWasNotEnoughAndSheWasJustCrying
#IShouldHaveExpressedWhileIBottleFedHer

If I was a mind reader things would be a lot different. Knowing when she will wake up/how long she will sleep next, how much she will eat/drink etc – I’d be able to plan things better. But because I don’t know I just have to guess and sometimes I guess wrong…

#SeeingHerSkinJustMakesMeFeelSoGuilty
#IfICouldGoBackInTimeIWouldMakeSureSheAlwaysHadABibOnOrMilkWasCleanedFromHerNeck

On this occasion I’d look at her neck and then just cry. I felt so bad. I hadn’t felt comfortable washing her loads before and that was mainly why it was like this. I’d feel better, then I’d look at her neck and cry again.

#IFeelLikeSuchABadMumAndMaybeIAm
#TheOtherWeekISaidToAGroupThatNowIHaveHadABabyICanFinallyPutMyselfFirst
#WhichMakesNoSenseAsBComesFirst

I felt so awful after I realised what I had said. To be fair at times I still forget I’m a mother, particularly if B is asleep or if T has her and I’m in a different room to them. I’m going to say that I meant as I’m not currently ‘working working’ that it means my art comes first, rather than me even though I am in my work, but maybe I just meant what I said. I definitely don’t feel that way now. I know that B comes first and maybe saying that out loud made me think about things in a different way.

#INeedToChange
#DoingMyArtKeepsMeSaneSoMaybeIJustNeedToBeMoreOrganised

#IShouldNotBeWastingWaterOnTears
#IKeepGettingDehydratedAndCryingDoesNotHelpMyMilkProduction

I feel like I have changed and I am more organised. My art definitely helps me a lot (and helps my family by having a mother/wife who is happier) and knowing that I have time in the evenings to do some things is great if I haven’t managed to do stuff whilst B sleeps in the day.

I (currently) haven’t cried since this day, though I feel like saying that means that another session is imminent. I don’t think so, though I should have said it was the last time I cried for negative reasons – I now often find myself crying tears of joy, because B has smiled at me lots or cooed at me, which I find adorable as the sound is sweet and her lips look so cute. That seems weird to say, but it’s true.

❤ (Because I’m so organised now I’ve signed up for a coding course and in the intro stuff it says to learn how to do the shortcut for bringing up the emojis box. I didn’t know there was a emojis box, but I just brought it up –Mac – press cmd + ctrl + space / Windows -press Win+. or Win+; – and put the heart in because B is adorable.)


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Categories
Oh Me, Oh Mãe

Milk Puddle On My Skirt (28th July 2020)

Milk Puddle On My Skirt (28th July 2020)
 
#IWasBreastfeedingBWhenIFeltLiquidRunningDownMyBelly
#ILookedDownAndSawALittlePuddleOfMilkOnMySkirt
#SheMustHaveSpatItOutOrLostItFromHerMouth
#IDoNotThinkThatMuchMilkCouldEscapeMyBoobThatQuick
#IWasHoldingBToMyLeftBoobAndHoldingHerWithMyRightHand
#IKnewIWantedToGetAPictureOfItBeforeItDisappeared
#SoIAwkwardlyTookThisPhotoWithMyPhoneUsingMyLeftHand
#TheFocusIsNotGreatButYouGetTheIdea
#AfterwardsIJustRubbedItIntoMySkirt
#ILikeHowBSmells
#ThenIRealisedThatMyBreastPadsSmellTheSame
#SoSheMustJustSmellLikeBreastMilk
#ThoughSourBreastMilkOnMyClothesDoesNotSmellAsNice
#SoIAmConfused
#IAmTryingToGetOutOfTheFlatToGoForAWalk
#TheWeatherLooksNiceAndSheHasJustFallenAsleep
#IAmTypingThisWithHerAsleepOnMyKnees
#IAmAwkwardlyTwistingMyBodyAsMyLaptopIsOnALittleTableToMyRight
#HerSkinIsSuperDryFromHavingSoManyMilkSpots
#HerScalpIsAlsoReallyDryAsIStoppedUsingHerMassageBrushBecauseOfSpotsOnHerScalp
#AtLeastSheWillBeWearingAHatWhenWeGoOut
#AndSheWillBeInTheBassinetOfHerPushchairSoPeopleWillNotSeeHerAndJudgeMe
#AtLeastWithThePandemicYouDoNotGetRandomPeopleComingClose
#ThoughActuallyIWouldWelcomeSomeChatAsIAmGoingOutAlone
#AndItIsTooWindyToTalkOnThePhone
#TimeIsTickingBySoIShouldGoOut
#IJustNeedToTryToPutOnHerCardiganAndHatWithoutHerWakingUpOrGettingUpset
#ThenHopefullySheWillLikeTheBassinetAgainToday
#ILookForwardToOurDailyWalk
#SometimesIGetIdeasAndOtherTimesIEnjoyThinkingAboutNotMuchAtAll

I feel like this post will be a short one as there isn’t that much to elaborate on.

#IWasHoldingBToMyLeftBoobAndHoldingHerWithMyRightHand
#IKnewIWantedToGetAPictureOfItBeforeItDisappeared
#SoIAwkwardlyTookThisPhotoWithMyPhoneUsingMyLeftHand
#TheFocusIsNotGreatButYouGetTheIdea

I guess from this you can work out that I am right handed, which is one reason why it was awkward to take a picture. I have started to put my phone on timer mode now to try to help me with taking one-handed photos. If the phone is facing me it’s fine, but if it’s not then the flash goes off for the countdown. If I’m trying to take a picture of B then it’s a bit annoying.

Thinking about it I should probably look in my phone settings…

#AfterwardsIJustRubbedItIntoMySkirt

Disgusting? Perhaps a little. It’s funny how quickly you get over being grossed out by things when you have a baby. I just need to remember to not wear leggings out that I have rubbed various things into (baby eye gunk, snot, saliva, breastmilk etc – not poop or wee though, I felt like I had to point that out).

#ILikeHowBSmells
#ThenIRealisedThatMyBreastPadsSmellTheSame
#SoSheMustJustSmellLikeBreastMilk
#ThoughSourBreastMilkOnMyClothesDoesNotSmellAsNice
#SoIAmConfused

I smell like sour breast milk a lot…

#IAmTypingThisWithHerAsleepOnMyKnees

I can tell how much she has grown as it’s not so easy to do this anymore. She is a lot longer and if she is awake I worry that if she pushes her legs into me then she might push herself off… She’s definitely getting stronger.

I use …s too much, but I love them. (Ellipsis, I love them so much I wasn’t sure how to spell it – I searched for ‘ellipses’.)

#HerSkinIsSuperDryFromHavingSoManyMilkSpots
#HerScalpIsAlsoReallyDryAsIStoppedUsingHerMassageBrushBecauseOfSpotsOnHerScalp

I talked about the milk spots in yesterday’s post and I will be talking about it more in posts to come.

#AtLeastSheWillBeWearingAHatWhenWeGoOut
#AndSheWillBeInTheBassinetOfHerPushchairSoPeopleWillNotSeeHerAndJudgeMe
#AtLeastWithThePandemicYouDoNotGetRandomPeopleComingClose

Well more recently random people have been coming closer to me. On one occasion B’s skin was really bad and I felt the need to say something before they did.

#ThoughActuallyIWouldWelcomeSomeChatAsIAmGoingOutAlone
#AndItIsTooWindyToTalkOnThePhone

It is really nice to talk to people, but I want them to keep their distance – particularly if I don’t know them. I see women pushing prams and I want to chat to them, but with the pandemic it puts me off. Plus I don’t like rejection – striking up conversation can be quite random.

#IJustNeedToTryToPutOnHerCardiganAndHatWithoutHerWakingUpOrGettingUpset

I think I achieved this. Winning.

#ThenHopefullySheWillLikeTheBassinetAgainToday

She doesn’t seem to care. She falls asleep pretty much anywhere. Rhyme.

#ILookForwardToOurDailyWalk

It is nice to get out. I feel like I’m quicker at getting out the flat these days and also I’ve breastfed in public yesterday and today, so I’m less worried about doing it now. Though I was with people on those occasions and both times someone else was breastfeeding too, but it does help with my confidence and learning how to arrange my clothing whilst being as discreet as possible.

#SometimesIGetIdeasAndOtherTimesIEnjoyThinkingAboutNotMuchAtAll

Kind of like in the shower. Sometimes I solve a problem, sometimes I get an idea or sometimes of think about nothing/rubbish and it’s all good.


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Oh Me, Oh Mãe

Baby Fingernails, Stubbed Toe (24th July 2020)

Baby Fingernails, Stubbed Toe (24th July 2020)
 
#IWasThinkingOfTakingAPhotoOfHerHandOnMyHand
#ButThenIRememberedThatIStubbedMyToeBadlyOnTheSofaLegYesterday
#SoIPutMyToeNextToHerHandInsteadObviously
#MaybeYouCanSeeHowBadlyICutHerFingerNailsLastNight
#NotBadForTheFirstAttemptReally
#IHadBeenFilingThemButTheyWereStillQuiteLongAndSharp
#AndSheHasReallyBadMilkSpotsAtTheMomentSoIDoNotWantHerScratching
#AndIDoNotLikePuttingTheMittenPartOfHerOnesiesOverHerHandsAllTheTime
#AsPerhapsSheJustWantsHerHandsToBeFree
#SheLikesToSleepWithHerArmsOutWideOrAboveHerHead
#ICalledTheDoctorsAboutHerSpotsAsTheyLookedReallyBadLastNight
#ItIsTheSecondTimeIHaveHadToCallTheDoctorsForHer
#TheFirstTimeWasBecauseHerEyeLookedSwollenAndIHaveToDoATearDuctMassage
#BothTimesIHaveJustHadToSendPhotosAndIHopeAppointmentsLikeThisContinue
#AsGoingToTheDoctorsForTheseThingsWouldBeSoStressfulAndTakeSoMuchTime
#IHadAQuickShowerThenTheBuildingsFireAlarmStartedToGoOffAsIWasGettingDressed
#TiagoIsOutAtWorkForTheSecondTimeSinceLockdown
#BWasAsleepAndIGotStressedOutThinkingAboutWhatINeededToDoToGetHerReadyToGoOutside
#NextTimeIWouldJustTakeHerAsSheIsAndGrabSomeStuffForInCaseWeWereOutsideForALongTime
#IWaitedAFewMinutesThenHeardVoicesInTheCorridor
#SomeNeighboursWereChattingAndACoupleWereGoingDownstairs
#ISaidIHaveASmallBabyAndIWasHesitantToLeaveTheFlat
#TheyProbablyThoughtIWasAnIdiotAsSurelyWithABabyThatIsMoreOfAReasonToLeave
#TheySaidTheyCouldKnockOnMyDoorIfEverythingWasOkayButObviouslyTheyWouldNotIfItWasNotOkay
#ISaidDoNotWorryIWillJustComeDownstairs
#IWasLookingForwardToMeetingSomeOfMyNeighboursAsIDoNotKnowThem
#IStartedToGetUsReadyAndThenItStopped
#TheGuyKnockedToSayNotToBotherAndIShouldHaveAskedHimHisName
#IHaveSeenHimOnceBeforeSoHopefullyIWillSeeHimAndIPresumeHisGirlfriendAgainSoon
#ThenIThoughtIWouldDoThisShootWhilstBWasStillAsleepOnTheBed
 

#IWasThinkingOfTakingAPhotoOfHerHandOnMyHand

I had imagined a nice, cute picture of her hand on mine recording the difference in size. I’ll have to do it some other time.

#ButThenIRememberedThatIStubbedMyToeBadlyOnTheSofaLegYesterday
#SoIPutMyToeNextToHerHandInsteadObviously

But of course I’m the kind of person who then stubs their toe and thinks that I should put it next to my baby’s hand instead. It doesn’t even really look that bad in the picture, but it got worse as the day went on.

I stub my toes quite a lot, though I thought I hadn’t hit it as hard as previous times but afterwards it hurt more. I had moved the sofa to do dance videos and there was less space to walk by it than usual, so obviously the one time I’m not wearing my sandals I kick the sofa leg. I usually hurt them on the bed or something. Perhaps it doesn’t look that bad because the bedsheet is more purple.

(My feet looks quite tanned compared to B’s hand. I guess I’ve been wearing sandals a lot and B isn’t in the sun very much.)

#MaybeYouCanSeeHowBadlyICutHerFingerNailsLastNight
#NotBadForTheFirstAttemptReally
#IHadBeenFilingThemButTheyWereStillQuiteLongAndSharp

I’ve cut them again since, but I think I did a better job that time; I need to start cutting them and then filing them. She’s started to grab me a bit more, so I probably should for our safety.

#AndSheHasReallyBadMilkSpotsAtTheMomentSoIDoNotWantHerScratching

Oh those milk spots. I said in my last post that in a few posts time I’ll talk about crying again. Well her skin problems were the main reason why I got upset…

#AndIDoNotLikePuttingTheMittenPartOfHerOnesiesOverHerHandsAllTheTime
#AsPerhapsSheJustWantsHerHandsToBeFree

I feel like I’m depriving her by putting them away all the time; I should only really do it when she sleeps. I haven’t used the mittens in a while though…

#SheLikesToSleepWithHerArmsOutWideOrAboveHerHead

So adorable. We did swaddle her more in the beginning and we thought about buying a swaddle rather than using a blanket, but we haven’t done it in a while either.

#ICalledTheDoctorsAboutHerSpotsAsTheyLookedReallyBadLastNight

She just said to use some cream if the skin feels dry and that milk spots are super common.

#TheFirstTimeWasBecauseHerEyeLookedSwollenAndIHaveToDoATearDuctMassage

She had probably been scratching it, but her eyes get gunky and I have to clean them a lot. Their tear ducts get blocked easily at this age. It seems to be getting bad again, so I need to keep doing this massage:

#BothTimesIHaveJustHadToSendPhotosAndIHopeAppointmentsLikeThisContinue
#AsGoingToTheDoctorsForTheseThingsWouldBeSoStressfulAndTakeSoMuchTime

I’ve mentioned how great doctor’s appointments are near me at the moment a few times on this blog (I’m sure it’s a similar situation in the rest of the UK, but I don’t know for sure). It must be better for doctors with less people missing appointments/being late, and like I said I don’t have to stress about leaving home. Speaking of stressed about leaving home…

#IHadAQuickShowerThenTheBuildingsFireAlarmStartedToGoOffAsIWasGettingDressed
#TiagoIsOutAtWorkForTheSecondTimeSinceLockdown
#BWasAsleepAndIGotStressedOutThinkingAboutWhatINeededToDoToGetHerReadyToGoOutside

Of course I had just gotten out of the shower and was getting dressed when it went off. I had never heard it go off before. I just kind of froze in panic. It would have been different if Tiago was there, but obviously he wasn’t. I just didn’t know what to do.

Do I carry her? Put her in a carrier? Put her in a car seat? Put her in the pushchair? Do I put her in a cardigan? Do I change her clothes? Do I bring a bottle in case I feel awkward feeding her? What if we are out there for hours?

#NextTimeIWouldJustTakeHerAsSheIsAndGrabSomeStuffForInCaseWeWereOutsideForALongTime

I should have just grabbed some stuff quickly, put it in a bag and sorted her out once we got outside. Hopefully I won’t have to worry about it again, but next time I’d just get us out ASAP as you never know if it’s real or not.

(Then perhaps too many unnecessary hashtags about me interacting with neighbours/wanting to interact with neighbours.)

I saw two next door neighbours once during lockdown and I wasn’t even sure if they were the neighbours I’d seen before. I don’t know if they noticed that I was pregnant. Were they surprised to hear a baby a few months later? The other next door neighbour/s I might have seen once but I don’t remember. I feel like the one I saw a bit moved out. It’s a shame as in London we knew one neighbour and I thought we would know more here. The day that we moved in we chatted to a guy who lived in our building and he seemed nice, but we haven’t seen him since. So yeah, I’d be keen to know our neighbours more.

The way we spoke to people in our last building was by looking after their post, because it used to get stolen a lot. Here it doesn’t seem to be a problem though…

#ThenIThoughtIWouldDoThisShootWhilstBWasStillAsleepOnTheBed

The alarm was going off right outside our door, so I was also worried about subjecting B to that noise. How she slept through it all I don’t know, but she did and we did a shoot. Hurrah!


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Oh Me, Oh Mãe

Crying In My Nan’s Kitchen (16th July 2020)

Like yesterday’s post, this is also awkward to share.

I’m glad that I only (currently) have to talk about me crying once more and it’s not for another 5 more posts.

Crying In My Nan’s Kitchen (16th July 2020)
 
 
Just had a cry in the kitchen. I was sorting out lunch and I ate all my food in there too.
 
I’m visiting family and I don’t like being told that I’m doing things wrong or don’t know what is wrong with my own baby. 
 
Okay I don’t know everything, but baby acne is a thing. And how I’m feeling goes beyond this one incident, it’s not the first time I’ve felt judged. 
 
My life has completely changed, whereas Tiago has his job still. I have my art still, but with writing and pictures like this it makes me feel like I’m just making work about my own failures.
 
I produce her food so feeding is stressful for me – am I producing enough milk? – whereas Tiago does not have the same feelings around it. 
 
I have started to breastfeed her more, which I guess is odd as by now people are perhaps doing the opposite – she is now 5 weeks old. Though tomorrow all her meals could just be delivered via bottle again. It depends on how me and my nipples are feeling. 
 
I just want to sleep. I wake up feeling knackered, but then I feel so wide awake.
 
I’m writing this as B snuffles on my boob and I need to take more time to appreciate her, as she has already grown up so fast. 
 
Maybe making a project isn’t the best use of my time, but I need it to still feel like me and hopefully saying this stuff out loud in its full awkwardness will help someone else.

I’m elegantly wiping my nose in the photo, though I’ve just realised that it fits my love of hands in pictures. I like when they appear looking a bit odd. I’m guessing I probably was quite aware of how my hand looked. You can also see the long fingernail that in the end I cut as I was worried that I was going to accidentally poke B in the eye with it…

I wrote the text on my phone as I was upset and just wanted to write quickly, so I decided to not think about it in hashtags form. I could have changed it to be that way, but like I’ve said before with this project I want to experiment with different forms of writing if I feel like it.

So to comment on the text:

Just had a cry in the kitchen. I was sorting out lunch and I ate all my food in there too.

I cried in the kitchen, but I took the photo in the utility room, which is next to it. You don’t need to know that really, but in case someone who has been there is reading this I don’t want them to be like ‘excuse me but…’. Why did I take it there? I think I naturally gravitate towards a blank wall to take pictures and this was the nearest blank wall that meant I wasn’t showing my tears to anyone else. (Though I didn’t stand right next to it, so there is a bit of mirror creeping in but it makes the location more identifiable for me at least.) I think I also wrote the text in that room.

I ate my food in the kitchen as I wanted to stop crying before I sat down, and it obviously took me a while to.
 
I’m visiting family and I don’t like being told that I’m doing things wrong or don’t know what is wrong with my own baby. 
Okay I don’t know everything, but baby acne is a thing. And how I’m feeling goes beyond this one incident, it’s not the first time I’ve felt judged. 

So B had a lot of milk spots (later confirmed by the doctor) and my Nan had never heard of them. They weren’t lovely to look at, but they got a lot worse in the week after (which is partially why I have another crying post). Milk spots are super common and don’t need any treatment, but after feeling not very confident with my mothering feeling judged about them really didn’t help.

It was hard after just being at home feeling like our parenting skills were being watched closely (as even usual people who would visit at/by this point like the health visitor weren’t able to because of Covid). I know people mean well when they give advice, but it’s not always welcome. Particularly if the baby is all well and good.
 
My life has completely changed, whereas Tiago has his job still. I have my art still, but with writing and pictures like this it makes me feel like I’m just making work about my own failures.

I guess it’s understandable that I initially found my new life weird and somewhat hard. It’s a massive life shift after things were pretty much the same for years and years (even with moving from London to Liverpool my life didn’t change that much). I realised during lockdown that I wouldn’t even get some kind of goodbye to my pre-baby life. I had done things for the last time whilst not being a mother that I hadn’t even realised were my last time – just simple things like going to a restaurant, to a gallery, to the cinema, on holiday etc. I’m not really upset about it, but it was a weird realisation.
 
I produce her food so feeding is stressful for me – am I producing enough milk? – whereas Tiago does not have the same feelings around it. 

Things will be different when she starts to eat ‘normal’ food, but for now it is kind of odd that she relies on me to produce what she eats/drinks. Obviously formula exists, but for now I provide her food. It really is bizarre, but kind of cool.
 
I have started to breastfeed her more, which I guess is odd as by now people are perhaps doing the opposite – she is now 5 weeks old. Though tomorrow all her meals could just be delivered via bottle again. It depends on how me and my nipples are feeling. 

It doesn’t matter what other people are doing. I am mainly breastfeeding her, but Tiago is again bottle feeding her whilst I write this. Fun fact: I haven’t put nipple cream on for a few days now so they must be hardening up. I remember a ‘Mum friend’ saying the other week that she doesn’t need to use it anymore and I was like ‘whoa’. I guess it’s not a big deal, but it’s been a noticeable thing for me. Before I used to rush to put it on after every feed.
 
I just want to sleep. I wake up feeling knackered, but then I feel so wide awake.

Yeah, I want to sleep now. This morning T bottle fed her whilst I slept a bit longer, but usually I wake up and sort B out and plan to go back to sleep. By the time I can sleep again though I’m usually feeling super awake.
 
I’m writing this as B snuffles on my boob and I need to take more time to appreciate her, as she has already grown up so fast. 

We saw a friend today and she said how tiny B is, but B seems so big to me now. She’s definitely growing and changing day by day. I’m excited for the future, but I also don’t want her to grow up too fast.
 

Maybe making a project isn’t the best use of my time, but I need it to still feel like me and hopefully saying this stuff out loud in its full awkwardness will help someone else.

It is definitely therapeutic making my project and doing it makes me feel like me. This is what I do. I make work about myself and my life, gradually getting more honest about things and feeling more awkward about it. Though the project has changed, making my artwork is the main consistent thing that connects me to my ‘past life’.

I feel less apologetic about making this project though. ‘Oh Me, Oh Mãe’ (the title of it) and my pregnancy project are perhaps more relatable than previous series and I sincerely hope they might help someone.

I’ve learned so much since becoming pregnant – a bit about myself, but a lot about the human body. Things that you don’t really get told about until you ‘join the club’ or maybe I just was ignorant to a lot of things before.

It’s still early days and I have a lot to learn, but I’m excited. I just need to keep up a good life balance (as best as I can) and learn to rest more. Fingers crossed.


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