Wednesday, April 25, 2012

holiday (much needed)

 Last week, for the first time since everything kicked off in November, I had not a single medical appointment.  Wowsers.  My mum suggested that Dulcie and I should make the most of it and go and spend the week in Elgin with her and my dad.  I so, so, so wanted to be there, but was very anxious about undertaking the long train journey (over four hours) on my own with a small baby and all her associated gubbins.  I almost chickened out and didn't go, but actually the journey was better than usual and Dulcie was the ideal travelling companion.  There she is, chilling out on the seat beside me with her crocheted blanket (one of them!) and her new favourite monkey toy.  She fed most of the way to Elgin, slept on my chest most of the way back and hardly cried at all in either direction.  What a star.
When we got to Elgin, I knew we'd made the right decision in going.  My mum usually bakes a little something whenever I visit, but since she retired recently she has much more time to devote to such things and had prepared an entire afternoon tea, all home made.  There was coffee and pecan cake, cherry and apricot scones, bran loaf and tiffin, all absolutely delicious.  You can see it there, displayed on my granny's amazing cake stand.

Dulcie seemed to love being in my mum and dad's house.  It is the polar opposite to our flat - warm, clean, tidy, organised and calm.  She also had a proper cot to sleep in instead of a basket on the floor and a lampshade above her bed that made her laugh every time she woke up, though I'm not sure why. I did think perhaps it looked like a giant boob with a brass nipple?  I thought her sleep routines might have been disrupted by the change of venue, but she actually slept better than ever, falling asleep a good few hours earlier than she usually does.  She continued this for the first couple of days after we got back, but is now back to staying up late and making demands on her bleary-eyed mother long past a sensible bedtime.

 She was very happy to have cuddles on tap all day every day.  Here she is with Grandapod, looking sceptical. 
And here she is having her morning snooze on Granny's shoulder, an activity she enjoyed every single day.
 And a wee close-up of her peaceful and contented face.

The weather (not that you'd know it from these photos) was horrible - thunder and lightning and constant rain - so we didn't get out and about much, but I was more than happy to mooch around my mum and dad's house, just getting the time to feel slightly human and love being with Dulcie again.  Some friends and relations also came round to visit and Dulcie charmed them all and got yet more cuddles.
My mum had looked out lots of baby toys including some, like the spinny thing above, that were once mine.  Dulcie learned to hold things while we were on holiday (she's loving her new rattle!) and got quite obsessed with trying to make this rabbit jiggle back and forth.  She had to concentrate so hard, but by the end of the week she was putting out one finger and twanging the little button with varying degrees of success.  I was so happy to see her doing something new.  The consultant at her recent premature baby appointment told us that she'll be slow to reach physical milestones because she is so tiny and therefore not strong enough to do things that you might expect from a baby of her age (although she should be all caught up by the time she's about two) so I felt like her not gaining weight would just hold her back in so many ways and was quite down about it.  Seeing her working so hard to learn new things and succeeding made me chill out a bit about it all.  And she was weighed again when we got back to Glasgow and had gained a decent amount while we were away.

I'm so glad we went on this little girls-only minibreak.  It was like a second honeymoon for Dulcie and I, and I think I really needed to take a step back from things and get a bit of TLC.  Hopefully now we've braved the journey once we will be able to visit more regularly.  My next few weeks are not looking too busy appointments-wise, but I'm not sure Graham would forgive me if I took Dulcie away again quite so soon!

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