Suffering From Anxiety After Childbirth

With having such an easy pregnancy with my first child, Finlay who is now 2 years old, it came as quite a shock when the birth didn’t exactly go to plan.

To cut a long story short, it was long, confusing, and I lost a lot of blood (2 Litres). It was quite a traumatic experience, and it took a long time to fully recover. I had a 2nd degree tear, severe anaemia – my HB level was about 7.2, it should be around 12-14.

After this experience and the initial recovery, we were then faced with our little one being diagnosed with GBS ( I have written about that here). So what had already been quite a distressing experience, just shy of 2 weeks later we were faced with the most worrying time of our lives. Add the two of them together, and I was left in a little bit of a state.

It took me a long time to figure out that maybe I wasn’t my usual self, and it took me about a year to finally admit defeat and seek help. For a long time I had been telling myself that I would get over it, and soon be back to my normal self. Plus I also felt a bit silly, I mean there are much worse things that can happen, a lot of people suffer with bad (and much worse) births and all sorts of different problems. I guess I just felt I was being a bit dramatic.

The reality of it was that I really was struggling. Behind the everyday emotions and trying to just troop through, I really feel I was in a bad place. I worried about Finlay ALL of the time. Now don’t get me wrong, every parent worries, it’s just a natural instinct. However my worrying was extreme, I had a thermometer in Finlays ear at least 3 times a day, I would get anxious about people holding him, or taking him into public places. I would take him to the doctor over the smallest cough, mild temperature, any little thing I felt he had I would take him to a doctor about. I kept constantly replaying Finlays birth in my head, and would get flashbacks of all the doctors and midwifes frantically trying to stop the bleeding.

October the following year came and this is when I knew I needed to seek some help. We went on our first holiday abroad to Mallorca. It was such a wonderful holiday, but was soon darkened when we had to come home. I’ve always been a bit anxious flying, but nothing dramatic, I was able to get on with it quite easily. However on our return flight, I completely lost it. We hit a little turbulence going over the Alps, and I completely lost control and had a panic attack. My eyes were blurring, I couldn’t stop asking the flight attendants whether we were going to be ok, I was crying and quite literally out of control. I have never acted this way in my life, I have no idea what came over me! Whether it was because I had Finlay travelling with us for the first time, or the fact we hit quite bad turbulence, I just have no idea! Now when I look back on it, I really do feel quite embarrassed.

After that episode I decided enough was enough and that I need to go to the doctors. He came to the conclusion that I may have been struggling with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), I was then referred to a psychologist for an assessment, who then confirmed this.

I have since calmed down a lot, I worry no where near the amount I did. However I am now left with the fear of flying that is so severe, I now feel it impossible to get back on a plane, just the thought of it makes me get that familiar feeling of anxiety. It makes me so sad, I feel so selfish to deprive my family of lovely holidays as a result of this. I can only hope that sometime in the future that this subsides. We’ve been on holiday every single year, and now I cant see us going for a long time.


Have you suffered anything similar as a result of a traumatic birth?




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Group B Strep – Our Experience

Like all expectant parents, I started the journey with worry. I worried if I would miscarry, I worried if my baby would be born with a defect, I worried if something bad would show up on my 20 week scan, I worried if the labour would be awful. You name it, I can guarantee I worried about it!

However. One thing I didn’t worry about was Group B Strep. I mean to be honest, if you had mentioned this to me whilst pregnant, I would’ve stared at you blankly as I had absolutely no idea such thing existed. There are no routine tests, no information,  not even a mention of the words Group B Strep in a routine antenatal appointment, so why should I have known?

Oh how I wish I’d of known. I felt I had prepared myself with endless information about all kinds of problems, and I felt as though I knew enough so that if I did stumble across a problem, I would at least have known what was being spoken about.

So, when our baby (now 2 years old) came in November 2013, as beautiful and perfect as we had hoped and dreamed he would. We were beside ourselves with happiness, I think every new parent feels that overwhelming relief that their baby has come just as they’d hoped, the pride and joy you feel is just beyond any explanation.

Fast forward 2 weeks. Our nightmares were becoming apparent. Something was not right with our beautiful,tiny baby boy. He had woken me up at 6am for his usual feed, the only problem was, he would not take the bottle, maybe he just had wind? Maybe he wasn’t hungry and just needed a cuddle? I tried everything. My usual settled and content baby, was extremely distressed, he wouldn’t feed, he wouldn’t sleep, he just wouldn’t do anything. I even called for my mother in law to come over as by this point (around 12pm) I was at breaking point, I was all out of ideas, what was making my baby so distressed? I had checked his temperature and it seemed fine (however looking back now I feel this thermometer was inaccurate). My mother in law came, and we had both come to the conclusion that we thought he just had trapped wind and was a bit colicky. I had managed to get about 2oz’s of formula in him by this point, and my mother in law had managed to get him to sleep. Something did still not sit right with me, I really had a bad feeling, and this is when I decided enough was enough and phoned for an emergency doctors appointment.

As we sat waiting in the doctors surgery, Finlay had settled from the car journey, so was quite peaceful, and I began to wonder if I was just over reacting? Baring in mind our little one had still only drank 2oz in about 6 hours. As we sat down in the doctors office, I had explained all of the problems, to which the doctor didn’t say much, he then checked his temperature… 38.9!!!! This is when alarm bells started, and the panic set in, our baby boy was really quite unwell. The doctor phoned the hospital immediately and we were told to head there straight away. I honestly cannot explain to you what that car journey was like, the worry, the fear, the scenarios you play in your head. It was just so terrifying.

We had got ourselves into the children’s ward at the hospital and whilst waiting to see a paediatrician, we were asked to get a urine sample from Fin. This sounded much easier than it was. Why do little boys choose to piddle on you every other time but the actual time you need them to? We didn’t manage to get one, and by this point the paediatrician had come and explained to us that they would take some blood tests to try and establish whether Fin had an infection or not. My poor baby was prodded so many times, seeing them in pain is just so heart wrenching. A few hours later the paediatrician had returned. “I’m afraid Finlay has got some sort of infection going on, we will need to run some more tests, and he will need to be started on IV antibiotics straight away”. My heart sank. What was wrong? Was he going to be ok?

Over the course of the next few days Finlay underwent, more blood tests, injections, a lumber puncture, and a brain scan (he had began to have small seizures). It was the most terrifying experience for my entire family. The only thing I can be thankful about was that Finlay would be too young to remember any of it.

Eventually the diagnosis came.. Septicaemia caused by a bacterial infection called Group B Strep. We were told we had caught it extremely early, and had we left it longer, we could’ve been looking at meningitis. We had been very lucky in the grand scheme of things, Finlay continued on antibiotics and was released from hospital 8 days later and just a few days before Christmas.


Would this have happened if I’d have known or been checked for GBS. To be honest i’m not sure. However I really do feel that if I had been checked and it had came up, precautions would’ve been put in place to try to prevent it. I cannot stress how important I feel it is to do the research on this, to make yourself aware of the symptoms in a baby. GBS will cause no symptoms in the mother and is completely harmless to her, but it can be life threatening to the baby. We were so so lucky. Many babies are not, it can leave them with brain damage, and future difficulties, in some cases even cause death.

I really wanted to write a post  to create some awareness of this awful infection, as we were personally affected by it. I really hope that one day some checks come in place to try and prevent this happening. Please click the link below for more information and the signs and symptoms from the Group B Strep Support website!

I am so thankful that my Finlay is now a happy and healthy 2 year old!






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Have I failed at parenting?


There are so many unknowns when it comes to parenting. Nobody can prepare you for what lies ahead of you when you have that beautiful growing bump.

I had a very textbook pregnancy. No issues what so ever. I felt the glow, I had the beautiful bump, and in that time I thought to myself “I’ve got this”. Little did I anticipate that 2 years on I would be sitting here thinking to myself – I completely haven’t got this.

My eldest is now 2 years old, and we appear to have hit a phase commonly known as the ‘terrible twos’. Or is it? I have no idea, I am at a loss with this one, and thus comes the question have I failed? When my toddler is having the most epic of all meltdowns because I said no to him having a kinder egg, when my toddler has rapidly (and I mean rapid! How can those little legs go so fast?) run across the other side of what is probably the biggest Tesco in the UK despite asking him countless times to comeback, when my toddler will scream in a restaurant and then proceed to smear Bolognese throughout his hair and face until I can physically sit there no more. When you attend toddler group and everyone else’s toddler sits there so joyful following each instruction whilst you sit there tapping the bloomin’ wooden sticks together, singing a long, yet your toddler, yes yours, is across the room face flat on the floor. I cant help but wonder have I failed? Do all toddlers act this way? Is this my fault? The complete unknown.

Guilt swiftly follows these feelings. Like a massive slap in the face, the guilt will creep in because I’ve lost my temper for the 50th time in one day, because I haven’t played with him enough and maybe that’s all he wants? Because he’s now a big brother and I cant give him that attention like I used too, maybe that’s why he’s acting up a little? I just have no idea, but I can say that the unknown and guilt is a really horrible part of parenthood.

I am sure for all the bad days (which feel never ending at times) there are just as many, if not more good days. Parenthood, although scary at times, is the most rewarding and most beautiful thing I have ever had the privilege to experience. My two little boys are my world. Would I change them? Absolutely not. Some times I think us parents just need to hear we aren’t alone, and that we are doing a good job.






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A New Years Resolution

Just like any other year, I will make myself some new resolutions for the coming year.

However, I rarely (if ever!) follow through with these.

Cue.. My new blog!

I have wanted to start blogging for a while now, after reading them religiously through my two pregnancies, I find them quite comforting and reassuring.

I also love the idea of being able to keep this blog as a place where I can share my own experiences, and to look back on as my boys grow and the memories we have made. I am by no means an expert at this! In fact I have put it off for so long through being worried about what people would think but, I have made myself this promise and I am going to do it!

I am very excited to begin this little chapter, and document mine and my families lives!

Happy new year!




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