My name is Casey, I have a 10 month old baby. I love having a baby, she’s funny, loveable and makes me feel fulfilled.
However, I can’t deny that since she’s been born my partner and I have faced some trials. I have now experienced giving birth, living with a baby with colic, breast feeding (still going!), sleep deprivation, washable nappies and weaning a baby onto gluten when I can’t eat it myself, amongst other experiences.
My colleagues in the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and I would like to share with you some of our stories about being pregnant and about having a baby. We would love to hear from you, and hope that get involved too.
Looking after a baby with colic is extremely difficult, especially when you factor in sleep deprivation, hormonal changes and physical recovery from the birth.
When my baby was 3 weeks old she suddenly started to cry every evening for at least 2 hours, non-stop. It was horrendous. As soon as the clock said 6pm, she would scream and scream… and scream.
Ah, the elusive colic. Every day, I manically Googled ‘colic’ re-reading the same articles for comfort and advice. However, the cause of colic is unknown; it is guessed to be indigestion or trapped wind. The doctor told me that it was a phase that would pass with time.
So here is my account of what seemed to help us the most:
See your baby’s general practitioner (GP) – Ensuring that there was no underlying problem put my mind at rest so I could focus on getting through the next few weeks.
Get a sling – I bought a baby sling and went for long evening walks. I thought of it as a way to keep fit and have quality time with my partner. Our baby would fall asleep within minutes with the motion of walking, and stay asleep for the whole walk.
Ask at a pharmacy – I tried a couple of over the counter products which seemed to help eventually. I found that the thicker solutions were best, as I nearly chocked her on one of the liquid products.
Chiropractor – My midwife recommended taking her to see a chiropractor. This was supposed to relieve any tension that may have been caused by the birth. I did this weekly for 6 weeks, and by the end she was crying less although this may have been because she was naturally starting to cry less. Other people seemed to find this more helpful. The jury’s out.
The tiger in the tree – This method of holding her worked the best, accompanied by a jiggling motion and some rhythmic chanting! I did this every night. It is a good arm workout and had varying levels of success.
Look after yourself – I always tried to see the funny side and laugh dryly at our situation, to keep me calm and slightly sane. I asked for help from my partner and my family to help me cope. Even the calmest of people need time out from a screaming baby, to have a cup of tea or a deep breathing session!
6 weeks later, I made it to the other side. I stopped dreading the evenings and taking compulsory walks, and spilling colic medication all over the bed linen.
I now have a happy baby… ahem…
By Casey Townsend