Monday, 11 October 2010

Bye Bye Boobies - A Post Breastfeeding Lament

I'm saying goodbye to my bosoms, my lolas, my fun bags, my givers of life, my baps of milk.  They have served my babies well and now they are waiting to deflate back to their shrivelled up pancake-esque former selves.  I am not a fan of breasts I like being flat and boy-like, so breast feeding for fifteen months has been purely for the baby and not for me in any way shape or form. So, I'm just going to give myself a little pat on the back and call myself a trooper, because it has been a time of great personal conflict.

I love to run and exercise and eat healthily - breast feeding definitely makes my chest ache when I do cardio (even with two bras on)and gives me the most almighty cake craving ever. Don't get me wrong - and please don't take my moaning as advice - breastfeeding is nutritionally perfect for your baby and convenient once you get the hang of it, I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to be able to breastfeed as some women can't for many reasons.  While some women really enjoy breastfeeding, the closeness, convenience, (some even find it sensual!)  but for me, it just felt like another job towards raising a baby, like the nine months of carrying in my womb, I would much rather not do that part of the baby thing!  But it's for the best, so I did, and now it's done.  I feel rather sad, hormonal, very guilty and (when the mastitis and swelling has subsided) I'm sure I'll feel relieved.  It's been a week since I stopped, the toddler was not really that interested any more and I just want my body back.  I've been pregnant, recovering from pregnancy and breastfeeding non-stop since January 2009 Along the way we've had a miscarriage after the first scan showed the baby's heart beat was too slow, I needed surgery after that which added to the heart wrench. Six weeks later we were joyfully married and on our honeymoon we were delighted to discover we were pregnant again, but it soon turned out I was having an ectopic which didn't get sorted until I'd gone into shock and my body started shutting down - despite four visits to the hospital that week! I lost my right fallopian tube amid a huge kerfuffle and panic, it was incredibly traumatising and made the beginning of married life really emotional for all the wrong reasons.

Shady Characters - the teen and the baby
Then my beautiful third baby arrived with an infection and needed intravenous antibiotics, so we had to spend a week in hospital on the Jeremy kyle Ward at Queen Alexandra Hospital, the midwives were wonderful, the other inmates were not, then four weeks later I was readmitted when I had appendicitis and had to have more surgery to have the appendix removed!  I took the baby in with me and fed him round the clock despite being completely dehydrated and confused, the only break I had was when I was at theatre for three hours! .

I know that is a lot to be sharing with everyone, but I need to justify what I am doing with myself and yes, this breastfeeding lament is a cathartic blog, a laxative, a colonic for my soul. Thankfully though, everything has been going well for our little boy who has been strong and healthy since his early beginnings, we worked long and hard to get where we are today and even though I feel sad to stop breastfeeding, I think I deserve a little me time now.

On the bright side - I just bought these!

And these! You can't tell that I have a Napoleon complex at all, can you?

If you are still breastfeeding and would like some advice, then please check out La Leche League International breastfeeding support for mothers. Or check out Portsmouth's local branch here:

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Jelly Jazz Night Of The Dead Party Southsea Castle

Way back, many moons ago, back when Miley Cyrus was still pooping in diapers for Billy ray to change, back when Czechoslovakia  ceased to exist and instead became Slovakia and the Czech Republic, back when the internet wasn't even in everyone's homes, way back, back, when I was just a young thing and my weekends began on a Wednesday evening and ended on Monday morning.  

Back to when The Milk Bar was a cool place in London I used to frequent and not a sad referral to my lactating self. Back, back, back to 1993, when I used to think it was okay to go out clubbing wearing nothing but a silver skirt and a Wonderbra covered in marabou feathers, back when I didn't have a care in the world and my days were devoted to sleeping and my evenings were devoted to working and dancing, back to when I used to work in a dingy little nightclub above a bar called Dirty Dicks on the Barbican in Plymouth.  

Back to that moment in time, I was witness to a wonderful phenomena being born.  That phenomena was Jelly Jazz an evening of dance funk and intoxication for the ears.  The kind of intoxication that transcends the aural senses and drifts deep into your mind lighting up your hips, and feet, so that they sway, so that they move so that they skip and jump uncontrollably like the heart beat of a love-sick teenager when she spots her crush across the street. 

Matching knockers and cuffs anyone?
I was working behind the bar, serving drinks with an evil scowl perfected to warn away unwanted attention, teetering around in my huge (nothing changes) platforms and manky oversized uniform t-shirt, when the trumpets sounded, the beats kicked in, the ethereal voices sang out and the crowd was throwing spiky shapes and twisting all over the place.  This was new, this was catchy, this was enchanting, this was Jelly Jazz!  

Everyone else was playing dance, garage, break beat, housey housey house music, which I loved to dance to but this was the funkiest of all mother funkers, it was new and it was different and I was hooked.  I started making sure I was off on the evenings that Jelly Jazz were on so I could join in the reverie, I had to be a part of it and so it became a part of my weekly ritual during my time in Plymouth.  I would look at the organisers in awe, Pete Isaac used to have fabulous long hair, but of course he was too busy to notice a gawky Asian teenager who was trying desperately to look funky whilst avoiding the 'funky chicken' the only funk move I knew which of course isn't really all that funky.  Jelly Jazz was just amazing beyond amazing!  

So, it doesn't surprise me to hear that seventeen years later, club nights have come and gone (RIP Cultural Vibes) but Jelly Jazz are still going.  And they are not just keeping themselves to the South West either.  Jelly Jazz are coming to Southsea,Hampshire for one night only, for a special charity do.  So, don't miss out, buy your ticket and start planning that outfit.

They are hosting a Mexican Day of the dead Halloween special at Southsea Castle.  An amazing venue for a party and the tuneage will have you exploding with rhythm like you won't believe.  You can get your tickets at Bamboo Bar Southsea and the event itself is on 30th October.

Want some Mexican day of the dead inspiration?  Think swirly psychedelic artwork, think skulls, think skulls with swirly psychedelic art work.  It's all very Corpse Bride.

Blue nose, much better than a brown one
Corpse Bride - I want that dress!

Or I could just go dressed as one of my predecessors, we head hunters are pretty damn scary
Of course the main reason why I am asking you to come along is not just to be a part of the party but to help lend a hand to two very important charities: Down Syndrome Education International and Rock Challenge.  Both incredible charities helping to make major differences to young lives.  Click on the coloured links to find out more about their individual work.


SOUTHSEA CASTLE, Clarence Esplanade, Portsmouth

7pm - 12am

Tickets £10

AFTER PARTY @ BAMBOO Southsea, Palmerston Road
FREE entry and food with your castle ticket!

12am - 2am

Tickets from BAMBOO 02392 820288
Info Line 07872 455866

Proceeds go the Lord Mayor of Portsmouth's Appeal, which is raising funds in aid of two charities, Down Syndrome Education International (Charity Number 1062823) and Rock Challenge (Charity Number 1077291). Proceeds will be split 50/50 between the 2 charities.

Be there or be a pair