NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Making the Most of Maternity Leave  (Read 2362 times)

Steph Hen

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Angus Scotland.
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2018, 08:41:46 am »

I'm sorry but I can not understand why women can not find time to brush their hair, or get dressed because they have a baby.


I got sick in both of my pregnancies, the first was accompanied by so much vomiting, feeling faint, feet swelled until I had to buy new shoes and the skin was tight like a ball, bright red, the swelling spread right up both legs and into my abdomen, so as well as the bump I had another bump underneath. Both were c-sections, the first after 3days of hospital stay. I lost 16kg in hospital, 10kg of this was the fluid from extra swelling. Baby was SO needy, he had to be cuddled, fed from me all the time, carried about, entertained, I took him swimming 5 times a week, he never slept for more than 15-30minutes, never napped unless I was holding him or he was being pushed about I the pram. Any carriers or being stationary in the pram or on a play mat and he'd be sobbing again.

Now he's older we know he has sensory issues, sort of similar to the autism spectrum, ADHD type thing.

2nd was a doddle, lovely, slept for a proper bit at a time, or on a play mat, gentle nature, happy in a carrier. Unfortunately he got ill 10 days old so we were back in hospital and on a drip, he later developed food allergies to dairy, gluten, soya, corn, nuts and eggs, ranging from severe eczema to being blue lighted back to hospital. We have to be incredibly careful not to expose him to any allergens, we eat about nothing from a packet apart from rice and gluten free oats.

Both had tongue ties which meant they couldn't latch to feed properly which was another hospital visit and explained a bit of first ones demanding nature and why second was fussy and not gaining enough weight.

I didn't and still don't always have time to brush my hair.
Voss Electric Fence

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2018, 09:34:28 am »
With complicated pregnancies, births and babies/toddlers/children and beyond then obviously it will be more difficult to fit in everything but my point was, and I apologies if I made it badly or offended, as I have first hand experience of when things don't go to plan, that having a baby doesn't mean (for most) that you can't manage other things.


I didn't have a choice but to go to back to work and if I hadn't been able to do that because my child had complications I would have had some serious decisions to make.  I appreciate that not everyone could have coped with that situation.


All babies are a precious gift and it goes without saying that they will be the focus of your life.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2018, 11:09:18 am »
I'd forget the bees. They're more work than you think - at least ours have been. If you want some desperately, see if another beekeeeper will locate some on your land.

When I got an allotment, I thought I'd need bees for pollination.  I knew nothing so went along to the local Beekeepers' Society.  I soon learned that a) bees are a lot of work; b) bees fly up to 3km routinely for food, so you don't need hives on your own property as long as there are hives within a mile or so and c) thankfully, in my case, the President of the Beekeepers' Society had 50,000 bees within 3km of my allotment, so I needed to do nothing!   :D
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #18 on: March 30, 2018, 11:43:00 am »

I'd forget the bees. They're more work than you think - at least ours have been. If you want some desperately, see if another beekeeeper will locate some on your land.




Yes I second that, bees are a lot of work, expensive to set up with no guaranteed return, and if they are swarming you need to deal with them there and then.... if you get someone to set up on your land yes it may be good in return for some honey, but these kind of arrangements can easily turn into the stuff of nightmares... there is a reason why lots of beekeepers are retired men...

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #19 on: March 30, 2018, 11:55:45 am »
On another tack entirely is there a National Childbirth Trust branch in your area?   Ours ran six weeks of pre-birth meetings for both parents, by which time we'd made (and still have) some firm friends.  This, in turn, led to that group forming a babysitting circle (for points which were credited/debited as appropriate).  Doing paperwork sitting at someone else's dining table and eating their biscuits is an outing in itself and we felt confident the babysitters would be competent since they had a child of the same age.  The NCT also ran excellent sales in the church hall twice a year - a great place to sell outgrown clothing, kit and toys and buy the next stage up at secondhand prices.

Steph Hen

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Angus Scotland.
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #20 on: March 30, 2018, 01:08:58 pm »
Thanks harmony.

Isla, why do you work? For me it's about mental stimulation, feeling more than 'just a nappy changing, milking burp cloth' :-) over exaggerating, love my kids, but it's great to put on work clothes and speak to grown ups sometimes. Also because family business needs me just now. For me, although working from home when kids are in bed sounds ideal, it isn't, it makes me too tired, feel isolated and overwhelmed. Whereas I love going into the office.

How much work are pigs? If that's what your husband eats, that's where I'd be thinking for next step.

I got two kids which I bottle fed when my oldest was just shy of a year. Those little goats were great fun and they'd play with him in the straw alongside the dog, and later all go exploring when he was up walking, just adorable! As someone else said earlier, your baby is going to have a great upbringing!

I just about always start off too many seeds, then get sad when some get hammered by aphids, weeds or too dry in greenhouse... I'm getting there though :-)

If you can, I'd get a poly tunnel. So good with a little one if half is grass, or something, think how good it would be to be out there potting on with baby on a blanket while it's raining and everyone else is inside complaining. I don't have one, because of the money but think it's a great investment.

Isla

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Aberdeenshire
    • Facebook
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #21 on: April 02, 2018, 01:54:12 pm »
On another tack entirely is there a National Childbirth Trust branch in your area?

Probably.  I was just going to go to whatever antenatal classes my midwife sends me to.  NHS ones?  Are there advantages to attending NCT classes rather than whatever the other ones are?  I think one of my friends went to NCT ones because they're on at weekends so it meant her husband could attend without having to take unpaid time off work.  But then I think you have to pay for the NCT ones.  Not sure.

Isla

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Aberdeenshire
    • Facebook
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #22 on: April 02, 2018, 02:02:07 pm »

Isla, why do you work?


Ha!  Good question!  I'm afraid to say it might be... out of habit!  Trying to find the elusive "job that you love so you'll never work a day in your life"...

Teaching is never dull and the holidays are of course a boost.  I used to think of it as a vocation but now I would encourage anyone applying for teacher training to reconsider.  Still very interested in education so it's something I'll try and work out in the future:  a job still in education but not in a conventional classroom.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2018, 10:40:11 pm by Isla »

Isla

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Aberdeenshire
    • Facebook
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #23 on: April 02, 2018, 02:12:33 pm »
How much work are pigs?

In my head, all animals are less work than dairy goats but maybe it depends on the human.  Feeling like this thread has been a good process of elimination.  Will start researching and planning a polytunnel.  Then will get my hens back eventually (just five ex-caged hens who are currently at my dad's farm because we had to dismantle their run as part of the house renovations) and then one day pigs.  I went to the Aberdeen and District Beekeepers' Association lectures that form an introduction to beekeeping.  It was a fantastic series of lectures!  However, probably the most salient point was how fragile colonies can be so if I ever have bees it will be when I had time to look after them very carefully.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2018, 10:40:47 pm by Isla »

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #24 on: April 02, 2018, 07:48:22 pm »
Hens then pigs later sounds like a good plan  :thumbsup:   With pigs you can just get a couple of boys to fatten up over the summer, they'll test your fencing skills but otherwise should be mostly fun followed by some wonderful meat. 
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Big Mat

  • Joined May 2016
  • King's Lynn, Norfolk
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #25 on: April 11, 2018, 01:28:10 pm »
I'll add my observations here as the father of a 9 week old baby girl.

Don't make and firm plans for your maternity leave, just go with the flow of what is happening. My partner had a emergency c section in the end and thus wasn't allowed to drive or basically do anything other than tend to baby for 6 weeks, although she got signed off to drive at 5 weeks and had to go back to work  ( she takes baby to work with thankfully! ).

She's not been able to do alot of what she would normally do so I've been tending to the animals more than usual, jobs round the house, cooking dinner etc. If she had made plans of things she wanted to Do, I think she'd have gotten annoyed when she hasn't been able to.

No time spent cuddling the baby is wasted time, or sleeping during the day, or spending a few minutes just looking after yourself.

Just my observations from watching my partner go through it!

stufe35

  • Joined Jan 2013
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #26 on: April 11, 2018, 06:57:55 pm »
Yep having a child is a full time thing...they say the first 18 years are the hardest.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #27 on: April 11, 2018, 07:01:15 pm »
On another tack entirely is there a National Childbirth Trust branch in your area?
Probably.  I was just going to go to whatever antenatal classes my midwife sends me to.  NHS ones?  Are there advantages to attending NCT classes rather than whatever the other ones are?  I think one of my friends went to NCT ones because they're on at weekends so it meant her husband could attend without having to take unpaid time off work.  But then I think you have to pay for the NCT ones.  Not sure.
I think there's a nominal charge for membership and the course.  The advantage of the NCT is, in my opinion, that the members really want to be there, to consider the best birthing route for them.  Loads of support from people who'd been there, done that.

honeyend

  • Joined Oct 2011
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #28 on: April 12, 2018, 12:34:57 am »
My advice on maternity leave is do nothing, because it will be the last chance you will get.
  I would take time to review what really needs to be done as opposed to what you would like to do. As long as every thing gets fed, has water and has a reasonably clean bed, nothing will die.
  I have always hated housework, I was nest building for about a week and it drove me mad, so having a baby is the chance to cut everything to a minimum and invest in a cleaning company to give it a good do once every six months. Top tip, get a good 1600 spin washing machine, and I know some people think they are the devils work, a tumble dryer. I air dry washing and finish it off in the dryer, its great!
  The sun will shine soon so enjoy your baby, that's what's important.

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Making the Most of Maternity Leave
« Reply #29 on: April 12, 2018, 11:47:03 am »

On another tack entirely is there a National Childbirth Trust branch in your area?
Probably.  I was just going to go to whatever antenatal classes my midwife sends me to.  NHS ones?  Are there advantages to attending NCT classes rather than whatever the other ones are?  I think one of my friends went to NCT ones because they're on at weekends so it meant her husband could attend without having to take unpaid time off work.  But then I think you have to pay for the NCT ones.  Not sure.
I think there's a nominal charge for membership and the course.  The advantage of the NCT is, in my opinion, that the members really want to be there, to consider the best birthing route for them.  Loads of support from people who'd been there, done that.


While the NCT is really good for baby groups and meeting up in coffee shops/play parks/swimming pools etc (my NCT group still meets 17 years later, but now without the kids in a pub or someone's house for drinks), I have found the ante-natal classes very much focussed on a natural birth only and making women feel that's what they have to choose. If things then don't go to plan (as it did in my case), it makes you feel quite overwhelmed  and guilty (as if it is your fault) at a time when you are not quite your normal self and in my case - for months afterwards. I found the NHS ones were much more open-minded and in our case also involved the midwives from the local GP practices, who were also looking after you. NCT also cost money to join, NHS ones were free.

 

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