A Family Portrait In May {2015}

May arrived and vanished in what feels like seconds and I really cant believe that almost half the year has gone by already. Back in December I joined Me & Mine for the first time, and I made a promise to myself to join in each month. I didn’t anticipate how hard I would find Ava’s pregnancy. On the 7th of May, we welcomed our beautiful new arrival into the world and normality is resuming (or as much as it can with a newborn!)

Avas Birth Story - May 2015

Introducing Ava Rose

This is our little Ava Rose, and we have spent the last few weeks welcoming her into the world, and getting to know each other. She is so small and we are all in love, especially Lily and Amy, who are showering her in love and kisses. We have made so many memories already, and it feels like Ava has been part of our lives forever. Amy is thrilled to see her every morning, and Lily wants to hug, kiss and cuddle her at every opportunity, she especially loves her tiny feet! James enjoys cuddles too and will often offer to help feed her and hold her. We are besotted and could sit and cuddle her for hours, she is so perfect and she has fit straight into our beautiful little family.


A difficult month…

I would love to say that this month has been easy, but honestly its been one of the hardest yet happiest we have faced as a family. I developed an infection in labour and had to stay in hospital for 5 days while both myself and Ava had IV antibiotics (more about that here). Simon has a slipped disc in his back, and is in a huge amount of pain constantly, and sadly during May its been increasingly worse. Despite the pain, he has been our rock and he has been absolutely amazing at helping care for our young family.


I don’t have any immediate family, Simon is my everything and to see him suffering in so much pain, while I have been struggling too has been unspeakably hard. Luckily his operation date has been brought forward to the 4th June, so in just a few days he should be on his way to recovery.

If I am very honest, I expected to bounce straight back to normal after such a tough pregnancy. But, a traumatic labour, infection, and a slow recovery combined with expectations of myself that were extremely high has left me facing postnatal depression at a time when my family need me most. The guilt is immeasurable, but we have pulled together as a team to support each other and i think admitting how I am feeling has really helped, and with the help of my little family I am starting to feel much better.

The first of many ‘lasts’

A long time ago we decided that we wanted four children, and that still stands, Ava will be our last addition. Despite having such horrible pregnancy’s I still feel very sad to think that my body will never feel those little flutters that turn into kicks again. I said my ‘last’ goodbye to my midwife who has looked after all my babies, and I felt a strange sense of loss. I have a feeling that it will be the first of many many lasts, all which will tug on my heart strings!


A new chapter

At the same time I feel like a new exciting chapter of our lives is about to begin. I have spent 3 years out of the last 6 years pregnant. Some people think we are crazy, having four children aged five and under but I think we are exceptionally lucky. Our children are really laid back, kind and thoughtful and strangers often comment how well behaved they are! Like any children they have their moments, I wont pretend for a second that they are little angels, but on the whole they are happy, content and well balanced children, and that’s all I can ask for. We value the simple pleasures of life; walks, picnics, bike rides to school, treat nights with popcorn and a film and cuddles in Mummy & Daddy’s bed on a morning.


I cant pretend we aren’t looking forward to the next chapter of our lives. Its hard to find time for ourselves as a couple, the last time we spent a night away at a wedding, Simon had to drive home in the middle of the night to settle Amy, and that was over a year ago! As much as we are determined to savour every moment as the children grow, we are looking forward to leaving the nappy years behind!

Looking ahead

June is a bit of an unknown entity for us, we don’t really know what to expect from Daddy’s operation and recovery. If all goes to plan we are hoping to spend lots of family time together over the summer, as in September Lily will start school. The difference in James since he started school last September is amazing, all of a sudden he seems so grown up, especially now he can read and write. Lily is showing similar signs of growing up and I don’t think I am quite ready for her to make that huge leap just yet. During Ava’s pregnancy I had to say “no” a lot to all the children, and I am looking forward to saying “yes” and spending our time together exploring, creating, discovering, pretending and enjoying each others company before the chaos of school starts again in September for Lily and we lose that precious time together.

A snapshot of May


Our “May” Photo

Me & Mine: A family portrait project - May


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