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Leaving my little lady

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Up to mischief with Nana

So, the time came to leave April overnight.  It is not something I’d wanted to do before.  I’ve been asked away a couple of times, but the thought of it made me really upset and I just couldn’t leave her.  I had to be away from April so much when she was first born, that every minute is precious.  It’s not that I didn’t want anyone else to have her.  I just wasn’t ready.

I’m not sure there is a right time to leave your baby overnight for anyone.  I think it’s a really personal decision and when it feels right for you is the right time.  With the types of jobs Phil and I have and that a lot of my friends live away it was inevitable that I’d have to leave her at some point.  I wouldn’t want her to get to 5 and still not be able to leave her.

So, I was shortlisted for an award (check me out!) – as Sole Trader of the Year in the Enterprise Vision Awards.  I won this category last year and it was a fantastic event, that I decided to enter again.  When I was shortlisted we then had the decision of what we were going to do…stay over, or drive back?

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April enjoying the goody bag

Last year I was 26 weeks preganant, so I didn’t get to celebrate properly when I won.  I decided we should stay over.  I felt that Phil and I needed a night away and it was a good opportunity for me to leave April when I was with Phil.  I’d rather leave her when I was with him in case I was an emotional wreck and he’d understand how I felt, rather than be a blubbering mess on a girls weekend away.

We left April with my Mam.  Everything was prepared and notes were written, but I knew April would be fine…probably enjoyed a night of being spoils by the grandparents.  I thought I would be OK and I was until I got in the car.  I had a little moment (for about 5 minutes) but soon pulled myself together.

It was really refreshing to feel like “Lisa & Phil” again, just have some time to chill and be together.  We could stay up late, not have to worry about routine and drink…lots!

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An EVA winner 2016

So, I WON!!!  Woo hoo.  To say I was overwhelmed and emotional was an understatement.  I honestly didn’t think I’d win two years in a row, so had resigned myself to the fact I wasn’t going to win.  When they called out my name I was in shock.  I had to then give a speech to 600 people and I froze.  I could not get the words out and just burst out crying.  Luckily the audience were amazing and just cheered me on.  Last year I was cool and composed.  I deserved the award, but this year I felt like I deserved it so much more.  I have been through a really tough year (obviously), but despite everything I still managed to run a business and keep things going.  This year’s award felt like recognition for that.

Lots of champagne was consumed, dancing was done and a trip to the casino too!  WE had a great night and really let our hair down.  Not only did we leave April, but it gave us the opportunity to reflect a bit about what we’ve been through the past year.

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Phil & Lisa time

The next day the hangover was horrible!!!!!   The journey home was even worse!!!!  I would say it was nice to have a lie in, but the hangover didn’t help!  It was so lovely to get home though to see April…and guess what she had been a little angel!

So, I did it – I left her overnight…I was emotional at times (but that is a whole other blog post), but I did it and feel happy knowing that I’d be able to do it again if needed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hearing tests

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Loves a selfie

When April was in hospital, one of the last tests she had to have was on her hearing.  She did great and the doctors said they were happy with her.  They gave us the option of having her hearing tested again after another 8 months.  I’ve always had hearing probelms since I was a child, so it was something I wanted to have checked again, just to be aware if she was going to have any problem like me.

Last Friday was that hearing test.  It was just down at our local hospital’s audiology department.  I wasn’t quite sure what to expect…how on earth do you check a baby’s hearing?  When she was in SCBU, she had little headphones put on her and sound waves played through.

This test was a bit differnt.  We sat at a table with a lady opposite, who tried to distract April with a toy.  Another lady stood behind me and played differnt sounds to April.  If April turned to look, there was a little pig in a box next to us and it would light up and start dancing.

Each and every test she did brilliantly and there were some really quiet sounds.  They also checked inside her ears and they were all clear with good sized ear channels.  It looks like she isn’t going to have the problems I’ve had growing up, which puts my mind at ease 🙂

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Loving her farmyard book

This week we also moved up groups at baby sensory, from 0-6 month group to the 6-13 months group.  Previously she hadn’t been developed as much as the other babies, so the teacher thought she would be better staying in the smaller baby group.  It was nice to see some of the other babies had moved up with us as well.

How differnt this group was, there were babies whizzing all over the place.  Crawling around, getting into everything.  April just sat and watched in amazement.  I’m hoping that by seeing all the other babies moving around, might help her on even more and might get her crawling.  I think it’s really important having stimulation from other babies and children, so she can learn off them.  It still feels a bit odd seeing babies that are younger than her doing more…but I don’t let it get to me anymore…she is amazing whatever she does and she will do it in her own time.  We’ve just had the baby stage a little longer, which is lovely.

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Little princess

Despite not crawling yet, April has been progressing in other ways.  She is a pro at spinning on her tummy!  She has also started doing a little wave.  I think she has started recognising when people say hello or bye and wave.  She won’t do it on demand or all the time, but just when the mood takes her.  She beams from ear to ear when you wave back as well.

I am still mainly spoon feeding April; she is like a little bird.  She’s not been great at feeding herself.  She would struggle with the pincer movement to hold food, or just shove it all in her mouth and not bite it, so ends up gagging.  She has now started picking food up more, which is great.  I tend to feed her, but put some of the food on her high chair tray, so she can try.  She is doing well with her feeding and will try anything!

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Knocking it back

She has also now started holding her own bottle at feed times.  Her early morning bottle always makes me laugh as she glugs it back, like she’s not had a bottle in days.  I bought her some little handles for her bottle as she couldn’t get hold of them (I call them her handlebars).  She mastered this when we were on holiday and now gives herself her bottle.  Next is to try and get her to hold a beaker and move on from her bottle for her water and juice.

AND after months of broken sleep April seems to be going back to her old sleep routine.  She has been going down about 7ish and sleeping through again until 6.30ish.  She tends to wake up about 3 or 4am, but usually just needs her dummy popping in, or Ewan the Dream sheep turning on again and she’s right back to sleep.  I’m wondering if it is because we’re getting darker nights again?  Whatever it is, fingers crossed it lasts!