Oakley is 1


How is this happy content little lady 1 already, why can’t time slow down? I would like to share my experience of this last year and how it’s been. She turned up 4 weeks early and this is such her little character, she does things her own way.



My VBAC you can read the full birth story here.

The birth was beautiful, a very quick birth in water at 36 weeks. I really started this journey on a high, it was so empowering, and I wanted to do it again. I bossed the hypnobirthing techniques, but boy was I shocked when my body started pushing, I didn’t even think I was in established labour but 3 pushes in 10 minutes and she was out.



I struggle with postnatal wards, and this time I ended up writing a complaint about the care I received. I’ll do a blog post on it soon. Anyway the hospital’s policy was that I should stay in for 72 hours because Oakley was born at 36 weeks, Oakley was grunting but the doctors were happy with her observations and tests. I discharged us after 24 hours.

I had labia grazes, pissing was so painful, a perineal spray bottle was a life safer!

It was still lockdown when Oakley was born, restaurants opened for outside seating only, but it was too cold to sit outside. We didn’t have many visitors and we spent most of the time at home in our PJs adjusting to life as a family of 4, we didn’t want to overwhelm Willow our toddler either.


Newborn Oakley

She had jaundice but we had great breastfeeding support from lotusmidwife, we didn’t need to transfer to hospital for treatment. We loved the newborn snuggles, that really does go fast, we did lots of skin to skin.



It started well, my nipples were a bit tender to begin with but no damage, both Oakley and I needed to learn, even though I breastfed Willow for 15 months, a new baby is a new breastfeeding journey. I’m not one of those lucky people that find breastfeeding easy. For me it takes practice and being calm and relaxed.


After 2 weeks, Oakley developed reflux, my GP didn’t take me seriously because Oakley was putting on weight, in the end I paid for a private lactation consultant who specialises in reflux. With her help we worked out Oakley had an allergy to wheat in my breast milk, as soon as i cut it out Oakley’s reflux was gone, and she could sleep on her back. I will do a blog post, there is a lot to talk about.

I think because of Oakley’s reflux, she never breastfed for comfort, as it gave her pain. She rarely fed to sleep, she doesn’t want to feed if she is upset, it was just food for her, and I offered her the boob so much and 90% of the time she refused it. I just couldn’t get my head around that she didn’t want to feed for comfort. For Willow, breastfeeding was everything, but not to Oakley.


Oakley pinches my breasts so much, she even does it in her sleep, I have loads of little bruises on my chest. Little madam



With Willow I pumped 100ml of breastmilk per day for the local NICU, I wanted to do the same this time around, but Oakley must be an efficient feeder and didn’t leave any spare milk, I kept getting the pump out and I barely got 10ml per pumping session, I gave up after a few days and I just didn’t have the time/energy to keep trying.



This kid loves a cuddle, when she had reflux she only contact napped. Karl did so much skin to skin with her and it really helped with their bonding, he could get her to sleep which he couldn’t do with Willow. Even once her reflux was gone, we kept with contact naps, it was the quickest and easiest way to get her to sleep and she would sleep for ages, unless Willow woke her up. She lived in a sling for so long. When she wants comfort, she wants a cuddle, she used to fall asleep being cuddled and me kissing her cheeks, she loved kisses too.



I co slept with Willow for 17 months, I knew I wanted to do the same with Oakley. But this time Karl was in the spare room, there was no point us both being up during the night. Oakley’s sleep has been pretty good once I cut out wheat from my diet. She does wake for feeds but she isn’t up or crying at night. I hear her moving, pop the breast in her mouth and we both fall back to sleep. Some nights she wakes once and others she wakes more often, but I’m rarely tired the next day.

Willow did a year in her own room on a floor mattress, she started waking a lot a few months after Oakley was born. I guess she wanted mummy cuddles too. We decided she should co sleep with Karl in the spare room and she loves it, and her sleep is incredible.

Karl and I are pretty relaxed people and we haven’t been strict on routines, normally I get Oakley to sleep down stairs on me, we keep her with us, she wakes within 10 minutes if you aren’t close to her. Karl gets Willow to sleep, she still requires some help, basically you just need to lay next to her and she will go to sleep.

If one of us is out and we have to get both kids to sleep, we just let them crash whenever/wherever, if I’m at the gym, Karl rocks Oakley to sleep in his arms, and Willow will snuggle up next to them and fall asleep. Later Karl will transfer them to bed.


This might sound like such a faff, but this is what works for us and we all get so much sleep and our kids love being close to us and they sleep better.



With Willow we didn’t let her have sugar, process foods and salt until she was 1. With Oakley, I wanted to do the same but Willow loves to share her food with her and now Oakley kicks off if Willow has food because she wants some too.


Oakley eats so much, she really loves her food. I can’t be bothered to make separate meals for the kids, they eat what we eat, I cook from scratch but don’t add salt and we all eat together around 5pm. We have just done baby led weaning, this kid wants to feed herself.


Oakley’s personality

This kid hardly cries, she only cries if she has hurt herself or is tired. If she wants my attention, she shouts at me.

She is so content and happy, Willow makes her laugh the most, she’s tough and does things her own way.

She is so cuddly and loves kisses



In her 10 month review she was behind on most things but I wasn’t concerned, as she was born early and has an older sister that does everything for her. The health visitor was concerned and referred her to the GP. The main issue was that she wasn’t putting weight on her legs, I thought that she was just lazy, she has just started pulling herself up on things. You can’t encourage this kid, she does everything when she is ready.

Love grows

How can you love another kid like you love your first? Your love isn’t halved, it’s doubled, I have so much more love. They are so different and I love them both so much, Karl and I joke that we love the one that isn’t doing our head in the most.


Life with two

Oakley as a baby is so much easier than Willow as a toddler. I find going out every day helps and having decent honest parent friends is very important.

I’ve given up battling with Willow about getting dressed, I do not give a shit if she goes out in her pjs or her princess dresses.

I’ve embraced the mess, my house constantly looks like a bomb has gone off, we tidy up when the kids are asleep.

Fuck me, the mountains of washing is crazy and its mainly my clothes in the wash, because I get covered in shit, snot, sick and other random things Willow wants to wipe on me.


Maternity leave

This maternity leave has been so different to my first, when I was on maternity leave after I had Willow, I went to busylizzy most days doing my exercise classes, then a baby class afterwards I would either see friends at a coffee shop or watch shitloads of Netflix and breastfeed most of the afternoon and I even took naps in the afternoon with Willow. Haha I was living the dream!


This time, coffee shops are a no go with a toddler, they have been replaced with play cafes. Willow dropped her nap as soon as Oakley was born, no break for me then. Thanks kid! My days revolve around Willow, we go to forest school, play groups, soft play, parks, and see friends who have toddlers too, our conversations are so broken up as we are constantly running round after the toddlers. Oakley just fits in with Willow schedule, her naps are in a sling, in the car or when we get home in the afternoon. Baby classes are awful with a toddler, they just want to steal off the baby, their snacks/toys or try kissing the babies, not very covid friendly Willow, no one wants your germs.


How has Willow been?

Willow is nuts, emotional and very sensitive, we thought she would be jealous and struggle with having a baby sister, but most of the time she’s been fantastic, we have included her in so much and she is loving and caring towards Oakley.

She does hit Oakley, it’s more when Oakley is trying to touch or take Willow’s toys. Willow loves making Oakley laugh and their little interactions are too cute.


How am I feeling?

Most of the time I feel bloody great, I am confident in my parenting style, and I think Oakley is so easy, Willow is hard work but she’s hilarious and I enjoy my days with her and all the activities we get up to. But some days, it’s so exhausting and I just want to have a break, I feel like I’m a rubbish mum and regret the times I completely lose my shit.


Relationship with Karl

Wow we have even less time for each other with two kid haha. Karl has postnatal depression, he is on medication, and we have had different types of therapy. But generally, things are a lot better than they were, we have finished couples counselling and we have a lot of exciting things planned for the summer. Having children definitely impacts your relationships, we struggle to make time for ourselves and I’m not ready to leave the kids with friends and family yet so date nights or weekends away without the kids are on hold until I’m ready.


So what now?

My maternity leave for my full-time job ended on 25th March, I was so undecided what to do, when I have a bad day with the kids and they are diving me crazy and I’m crying that I’m not cut out to be a full time mum, I then want to return to work. But I have decided to quit my job and keep doing hypnobirthing and breastfeeding support in the evenings and weekends. I keep reminding myself they aren’t little for long and I won’t regret this time with them.


I did say to Karl I need a break from them, so I joined the local leisure center, I do classes, swimming or go to the gym to have ME time, this helps with my mental health and makes me feel more human.


And I would like to have another baby haha!


That’s my little update of the last year

Hi! I'm Jodie

Fully qualified Hypnobirthing coach.

Read more

Hi! I'm Jodie

Fully qualified Hypnobirthing coach.

Read more