It’s finally here. December. The year is almost done, and it’s been the biggest and best year of my life.
If I’m honest, it’s been so big that it’s bewildering. Overwhelming. I’m exhausted.
I know there’s still a month to go, it’s not over yet, but I feel like reflecting on it now. Not at Christmas.
I started this year pregnant but not showing. I started the year handling the responses to the news that I was pregnant. Yes, we’ve been together five minutes, and yes we have really thought this through and it is what we want.
I got ill around new year. I battled through constant migraines, plenty of sickness, and a kidney infection that hospitalised me for a few days. I had a low placenta, growth scans, swollen ankles. I was told numerous times that I’d have an elective Caesarean section only to be told I wouldn’t. Over and over. I was tested for gestational diabetes, told my baby was enormous. I was scared. I was signed off work, a fortnight at a time, for months. Then they decided I shouldn’t go back. Prescribed early maternity leave. My employers accepted it but weren’t amused.
My sweet nephew was born.
I spent more and more time here, with Trev. Where he could keep an eye on me. We moved all of my possessions across the bridge from my mum’s house and my ex-boyfriend’s house. Wilbur came here to stay.
I got to know the big kids. Got my head around my ‘step-mum’ role. I quickly grew to love them, the mad pair.
I started this blog. Deleted it. Started it again. Deleted it again.
We got a dog. I spent the last few weeks of pregnancy walking him up and down the same stretch of woodland with my swollen legs and feet in the scorching sun.
I lost my Nanny.
Mum visited. Dad visited. My sister and her family visited. Lots of times.
We redecorated the bedroom and slept on a mattress on the living room floor for a few days, right at the end of pregnancy. I took up our curtains. I’m ridiculously proud of those.
Iris came along, eventually. It took 30 something hours and was terrifying.
I spent two weeks in a blissful state of new mummy-ness before the tiredness and pain hit me.
Iris grew and grew and grew and I loved her more and more and more.
We went camping when Iris was 9 weeks old. We did loads of other fun stuff too, and having a new baby didn’t stop us having a full and fabulous summer.
I went to mum and baby groups and started my blog up again properly. I made friends here in Wales and missed my friends there in Bristol.
We got muddy, climbed mountains, paddled in rivers, ran into the sea, collected conkers.
We got a cat.
We’ve made mistakes and we’ve bickered about nothing. I’ve been stressed out, exhausted, deliriously happy, excited, content. I’ve loved and been loved and my life has been filled right up to the brim with love and family and happiness. The house got messier and messier.
Now we’ll celebrate the festive season. Our second one together. Our first one properly together. Even though we haven’t planned or shopped or wrapped anything just yet, it’s going to be the best Christmas ever. Because it’s us, all together. Me, him, 3 girls. The dog, cat, dragon, and all the other people we love too.