Lifestyle

Everything Happens All At Once!

2017 has been fun so far! 

A few weeks ago my Grandmother (in-law) was hospitalised. She’s been quite ill for a while and had a fall resulting in a lot of bumps and bruises and a potential fracture. 

She’s been in hospital rehabilitating for over 3 weeks now and it has been go go go eve since she went in, trying to organised her house and put things in place like chair lifts etc.

So to say my Husband and I are exhausted is an understatement. 

He’s been working as usual and then fitting time in after work for hospital visits, sorting the house out and then family time (when able). 

So our healthy eating has been really off and on for a start, and spending any real time together has been a struggle. 

However, our little boy had his Neurodevelopment appointment last Friday and we would at least have some time together then to go and see how the land lies with our boy.

For several months now I have noticed some strange behaviour from Matthew. Nothing extreme, but some things that are just not “normal” ( not that normal really exists). 

🔹He is very limited with his speech. He can say dada until he’s blue in the face, and as much as he knows who daddy is and uses this to address Michael, he also chants it all day long. This is the only word he uses. He does gurgle and makes other noises too, but just not words. 

🔹He doesn’t play in the conventional way that other children do. What I mean by this is he studies his toys. He feels them in his hands and moves them around so he can see every angle of the toy. He doesn’t use toys for the way they are intended. An example of this was displayed at his appointment on Saturday where he was shown a Rubber Duck, the Physio squeezed it and gave it to Matthew to see how he would react. Matthew studied the duck, touched the beak, twisted it around in his hand, looking at every angle of it and then put it in his mouth. This is the behaviour he displays when I give him anything to play with. 

🔹He is overwhelmed by new people and places. By this I mean, if he finds himself in a room he doesn’t recognise, he can get very upset. Same goes for people he doesn’t know. In Toddlers for example, he doesn’t notice any of the children around him because he is so focused on the toys, but when he eventually realises he is surrounded by people, he gets very upset and shakes his body quite vigorously.

🔹 He is averse to loud noises/ singing/ shouting. This is quite variable though as it depends on the kind of mood he’s in, but about 75% of the time he will become very upset by cheering, for example; at the end of a song at Toddlers, or when Michael and I are making a fuss of him for being a good boy.

🔹 He is hypnotised by singing, music and lights. I have always sung to him (even as a tiny tot in his incubator) and he will 100% focus on my every word until I finish. Same goes for his 2 favourite songs, which the entire family as a whole have on a YouTube playlist just in case he needs soothing! He is also mesmerised by lights and will actually press his face against some of his toys that light up. 

🔹 Until very recently he had a very strong aversion to baths and water in general. It was my sister who suggested distracting him with Peppa Pig while putting him in the bath and I can’t quite believe that after a year of being so strongly opposed to it, he got in and for the 1st time didn’t cry. He now bathes every night without a problem and without Peppa! 

🔹 He has quite bad eczema so has lots of patches on his skin that are sore. However he will scratch them until they bleed and doesn’t really show any signs that it is painful. As well as this he will often go into little trances and he’ll punch himself in the head or tug on his ears, again without any real sign of pain or discomfort. 

This isn’t the entire list of things but these are the main issues we’ve been having.

So… I have had a pretty good idea of what’s been going on for quite some time and have spoken about it at length with Michael and my family. However, Matthews consultant actually said the words on Friday and as much as I thought I was prepared, I wasn’t. 

Matthew is showing strong and clear signs of Autism (non-verbal specifically at this time).

It hit me like a tonne of bricks! 

Not because of the extra work and sacrifice it will take for Michael and I, but because he’s my baby and I just want the absolute best for him. I want him to have a wonderful and full life and it frightens me to think that he won’t have that, or that he will face hardships because of it. He has already endured so much and it’s unfair that he has to face any more difficulties. 

Needless to say, we know we have the support of our entire family and Matthew is loved beyond measure. It will just be a trying few years until we figure out exactly how to manage things.

Also it is worth noting that Matthew is still very young and so things could change and become less prominent. However the hospital and NHS in general are trying to be more pro-active in diagnosing Autism at an earlier stage so that symptoms can be managed quicker and more effectively. 

It will be a while before we receive our official diagnosis but they are already putting plans in place for early intervention purposes. 

So… Matthew will attend another intense block of Physio/ Occupational therapy, as well as Speech & Language Therapy and he is being referred to a Toddler class for children with Special Needs. 

We are so happy and thankful for the level of support Matthews medial team are showing. His consultant was wonderful on Friday. She was the first doctor to give Matthew a chance to come off his ventilator and although he didn’t manage on his first attempt it always meant the world to Michael and I that she had so much faith in him to try it. At the appointment on Friday she told me that she could see the sadness in my eyes but that I should remember everything that he has come through and that I have so much to be proud of.

I do. 

My boy is a warrior. He is an amazing little human being and I love him more than I ever thought I was capable of loving another person. He is a beautiful, funny and clever little boy who loves Peppa Pig, Calvin Harris and his cuddle blanket.

There’s nothing I wouldn’t do for him and there’s nothing that will ever happen in our lives that will make me think he is anything less than what he is…

My perfect little boy!!! 💙

Food & Drink · Lifestyle

Midweek Restart

So the last few weeks have been super stressful with lots going on in my family, so mine and the hubby’s eating has been far from 100% on plan.

But today (despite a Wednesday being a weird day to start a fresh) I am committing to getting my eating back under control. This is or 2 reasons. Firstly, just to get back on track with my weight-loss, and secondly because when I don’t eat properly I just feel rubbish.

It’s amazing that I didn’t notice this before with my unhealthy eating habits, but since joining Slimming World in October I have really feel the difference in my body when I’m not eating well. I think this has a lot to do with the fact that one of the most important parts of their plan is incorporating lots of speed (fruits and veggies) food. Unlike Weight Watchers where they encourage it but you can use your points to eat pretty much whatever you wish.

So I started my day with some porridge. I have both Rolled Porridge Oats and Oats So Simple sachets which I tend to use more than my loose Porridge Oats just for ease. So that was my Hex A & B for the day.

For lunch I had Chicken & Veggie Pasta that I made last night. It was packed full of speed foods like peppers, onions, courgettes, carrots, and aubergine. It was Syn-Free and DELICIOUS!

I had a chocolate craving midway through the day and had a Mint HiFi bar which was fab! I did however want to eat 5 of them, but I refrained and stuck to just the 1.

The rest of my afternoon involved playtime with my little monster. He’s such a wonderful little boy and he amazes me everyday. I know that’s the cliché mummy statement but in this case it is absolutely true. He is so funny and so determined. He just started walking a few weeks ago and he just wants to be on his feet all day now. Fun for him, not so fun for me, but as I said yesterday, at least I’m getting some light exercise (“light” is all I can handle right now)!

Hubby wasn’t in till later tonight so I just had some more pasta for dinner, which was boring but done the job.

However… the sugar/ chocolate/ everything that’s bad for me cravings are still here. I have had to take the drastic action of going to bed at 9pm to stop myself from devouring the entire contents of my goody drawers! 🤐

Why can’t I just eat cake and be skinny???

 

Lifestyle

Life With A Toddler

I am relatively new to all this mummy stuff but let me tell you, I honestly never knew a 1 year old could have so much energy.

I’ve now lost count of the amount of times I have had to put my livingroom back together today, and that’s after having had an hour at Toddler Sense this morning.

I’m exhausted just watching him, but at least all the running about counts as some form of exercise!

Food & Drink · Lifestyle

Let’s Start At The Beginning

12140750_10156791330140344_5139928375872780702_nSo as the title of this post says, I’m going to go back and tell you why I am on this weight loss journey.

I was always bigger, even as a little girl. Never fat I’d say, but definitely a bit bigger than most of the other girls I went to school with.

Yes I loved to eat, but not to a ridiculous extent. I just enjoyed my food.

It wasn’t until I started seeing my boyfriend (and now husband) when I was 16 that I began to properly pile on the pounds. It was the usual, staying in on a Friday night, eating takeaways and devouring share size bags of crisps and chocolate. It took its toll.

I reached my heaviest weight at the start of 2014. A number which I’m still not comfortable admitting.

It was a wake up call.

I started dieting myself at home. I had joined Weight Watchers before and knew the plan so I done it myself and managed to lose over a stone. But then I just coasted along at the same level, until finally I realised I couldn’t do it on my own. I needed to join a class.

I joined my local Weight Watchers in October 2014. My class was lovely and I quickly felt right at home. I made friends almost instantly and the weight started to fall off.

By May 2015 I had lost over 50lbs. I walked every day and even joined Zumba with one of my new friends from class. It was the best I’d felt in years.

However, I’d been having severe abdominal pains since January and often ended up in A&E because of how painful it was. I was diagnosed with Gallstones (a side effect of losing weight fast). This meant I couldn’t eat certain foods or it would bring on an attack. This included all greasy foods, anything too rich, or in my case eggs, which would induce the absolute worst attacks you can imagine.

Upside of Gallstones was that they aided the weight loss.

After one particularly back attack on the 2nd of May I was admitted to hospital and was being scheduled for emergency Gallbladder Removal surgery. They took bloods, urine samples and gave me a quick once over to make sure I was healthy enough to carry out the procedure.

I wasn’t.

I was in fact pregnant with Michael and my first child. A very lovely surprise delivered to us by a very excited group of the surgical staff.

So no surgery.

I did however continue to lose weight. This was given the OK by my midwife who told me that I was making my body even healthier for me and my baby.

By the time July arrived I had lost 82lbs.

I maintained my weight at this level for a few weeks and in August I was looking forward to attending my cousins Hen party, wearing a size I hadn’t fit into in years… even with an emerging baby bump.

So Friday the 14th of August arrived and I got dolled up and headed out. I had been feeling quite sickly and flu like that day but was not going to miss it.

My symptoms didn’t subside the entire night and in fact I started feeling worse. The next day I felt just as bad and started having a strange tightening in my stomach. After speaking to Maternity triage at my hospital,  I went up to get it checked out.

I was in premature labour.

My baby was born 4 days later, 16 weeks earlier than he should have been.

To say this was detrimental to my weightloss was an understatement. We basically lived at the hospital for 4 and a half months while he recuperated. This meant eating when we could and in the most convenient way, which involved lots of fast food and canteen delights.

In the midst of all this I also had emergency Gallbladder removal surgery (cue the sadness at losing my only eating restriction).

Long story short, I have put almost all of my weight back on, and feel just as bad as i did away at the start of my journey. Only difference now is I have a very rambunctious toddler running about, requiring all of my energy.

SO…

This is my reset and reboot.

I am fully resigned to the fact that I am a comfort eater and will probably always have an unhealthy relationship with food. However, 2017 is going to be the year I retrain both my brain and my body.

So far I have lost 1 stone and 9 pounds (23lbs), with a few slips along the way… But this is a marathon, not a sprint.

Hopefully you can follow me on this new adventure.