Well for the first time in Isabelle’s nine months of being alive, she’s been ill.
Ok, she’d had the odd cold before, but this time she was actually ill. Well, not massively ill. But Tuesday night, after a few hours of us not thinking she was ‘quite right’ she opted to throw up all over me. Don’t worry, in true modern day it’s-all-about-equality fashion, she also threw up on Rachel. No one can ever say she isn’t about gender equality.
We did the usual stuff. We took her temperature, which got up to 38.6, and then gave her Calpol and just tried to comfort her and keep her hydrated via Rachel’s boobs.
As a nurse, you’d think Rachel’s occupation would be great for a situation like this. But to a certain extent, it’s almost a hindrance. Don’t get me wrong, she was hardly bad enough to warrant the assistance of a nurse, but being a nurse means you might doubt yourself too much. You know what it’s like in the NHS. And I know Rachel never wants to be that person who’s turned up at A&E because their little one coughed a few times then sneezed. Basically, she never wants to be the paranoid parent. But we’re also fully aware, that sometimes it’s better to be the paranoid, overly cautious parent, than the one who did nothing. It’s a balancing act, and maybe it’s one we’re putting a little bit too much thought into.
Of course, if you are concerned, and your baby isn’t quite right, then please do seek medical attention. You are far better off wasting your time than wishing you had done something.
Actually Caring About Isabelle
This is going to sound slightly stupid, but when it comes to caring about people, I struggle. I think I struggle to realise that I care. As I’m sat here now it doesn’t really feel like I actually care about that many people. I think it’s one of those things that goes along the same saying as “you don’t know what you got ’till it’s gone.” I think that’s how I am when it comes to caring about people. I don’t feel like I do, but I dare say deep down there’s something there that will come up if something happened to someone.
And that’s what I felt when Isabelle threw up and genuinely seemed ill. I felt like I cared. There was a part of me that suddenly felt concerned for her, and this little rush of wanting to do something to help her feel better came to me. Despite the fact she wasn’t feeling the best, I was glad that it happened. It was nice to be able to feel that sense of concern and love for someone that in the past I’ve obviously struggled to form a bond with. Maybe it’s been all this time I’ve spent with her over recent weeks. Even Rachel has said that I seem more like a dad now than when she was on maternity leave.
I could easily have taken what Rachel said as a massive dis and gone off on one. But I knew what she meant. Being with a baby all day on your own changes the way you parent. Before Rachel went back to work I almost always had her close by if anything ever happened. If Isabelle cried too much I could simply go “she probably needs feeding” and bang, I’ve passed on the problem. But when she’s in work and won’t be home for 13 hours, I have to handle everything on my own. And that’s what she meant. She’s clearly seen a change, unbeknown to me, in the way I’m acting with Isabelle.
The Rest of the Week
For the rest of the week Isabelle was a little bit off. She wasn’t all that fussed on her food and spent a LOT more time feeding off Rachel. This is just another reason why we like breastfeeding. At no point did we have to wonder how much milk she was taking, whether to up it, or anything else like that. Just simply allow her to latch more often. I dare say it would’ve been fine with a bottle, but to me, breastfeeding just seems easier at this stage.
Another thing that changed this week was her nappies. Since she’s been taking on more milk and less solids, this in turn has made the poop a little bit more on the runny side. She also wasn’t going quite as often, so when she did, well I think I’ll just let the following GIF do the talking:
I’ve also really liked black and white photos this week. I’m not sure why, but I think they just give a different feel to the usual colour ones. We’re also at the point where changing Isabelle requires a large amount of distraction. She’s a very mobile baby, so she doesn’t really like being on her back, and never really has. So I thought I’d act as the distracter (if that’s a word) and use the camera to get her attention. That way I can get some photos whilst Rachel does the changing part. Here’s one of them:
Before I carry on, I will say that I’m not religious, and yes that’s Jesus on my wall. I love the painting, and I could write 1000 words on why the Transfiguration is a great painting, and what it means to me, but maybe now is not the time.
Anyway, I guess that’s it. As of this writing, Isabelle is almost back to her normal self. She hasn’t been sick, but she’s much needier and just wants to cuddle. She’s also managed to pass her illness onto Rachel and then finally onto me. Of course, the end part of it is the worst and I am obviously suffering the most. Not that I will mention it or complain.
Rachel also has another shift coming up next week in which she won’t actually be home until roughly 10pm. So that’s going to be a fun one! I might just take her and pick her up just so I have the car. But either way, it’ll be an interesting test to see what Isabelle is like without having Rachel until the latter part of the night. At some point she is going to have to do a night shift, and that’s going to be the biggest challenge, at least for me.