Audrey at 8 years old!

My baby girl turned eight this summer.

Ok, so I have been neglecting the blog, I still use Instagram as my main daily/weekly outlet for what’s on my mind and what’s going on with us day to day. It’s not that I don’t often have a lot to say, it’s just that I don’t set aside the time to write all the thoughts down…

And so, I drafted something for Audrey’s 8th birthday in July and forgot about it. I like to document her achievements and changes, so I am still going to write something, especially as it’s now October and therefore Down’s Syndrome Awareness Month.

At eight years old, Audrey is still small for her age. A lot of people have asked recently if Audrey and Rex are twins (he is five). Her favourite TV shows are Rainbow Ruby, Justin Time, Muppet Babies, most of CBeebies and Bluey. So much Bluey. Her favourite colour is rainbow (all of the colours ❤️). She likes cats, imaginative play, yoga, dance, cookery, kicking a ball and being on the swings. She can confidently sit on the ‘big’ swings, she is regularly asserting herself, refusing help and doing more for herself (like getting dressed, brushing her teeth etc).

Rex and Audrey fight a lot. She is easily upset by minor things, but they also simply like to push each other to their limits. On the other hand, she is very protective and loving, which is partly why they fight as Rex hates that! Even though they tend to fight and not play together that well, Rex often asks to sleep in her bed and I know that they will both stick up for each other when needed.

I have a reason to tell her I’m proud of her every day and I am often in awe of what her little something extra has done for us as a family. Her writing, reading and maths are all progressing and she still is very happy to go to school everyday (even if she refuses to do work when she’s there!). She loves Fridays because it’s PE day and fish and chips day.

Audrey never really asks for much (unlike Rex who wants every toy he’s ever seen) and at the moment she is really enjoying her baby doll again, being a mummy, reading her stories and giving her milk. Her little doll’s pram broke recently (it finally collapsed when a full sized eight year old sat in it) and I’ve managed to find a yellow pram for Christmas via eBay that I know she will absolutely love. £15 well spent and honestly, I know if that’s all she got, she would be thrilled. Audrey can really make you understand simple pleasures.

Audrey’s enthusiasm for life continues to shine and long may it continue! We are so lucky she has a voice and boy can she use it – early in the morning her and her brother can talk and talk at a very loud level!

Check out our Instagram for lots of DS Awareness Month posts as I am taking part in Positive About Down Syndrome’s daily posts.

Bun in oven

I’m going to start this post by describing what it was like to find out “we” were pregnant with Audrey.

As someone who enjoys a surprise but wants the surprise RIGHT NOW, I peed on a few sticks unnecessarily before striking positive after about 6 months of trying for Audrey. I just couldn’t “wait and see”, if I had a pregnancy test in the house, I had to pee on it!

Once we had recieved the positive test we were hoping for, of course we said we’d keep it to ourselves until the scan… just tell a few friends… Actually we were super restrained in that we didn’t tell our family. We kept this secret as our scan was due just days before Christmas and we thought it would be an amazing announcement to make on Boxing Day with both mums and brothers in attendance. However outside of that big announcement, we did tell quite a few friends. Not least because of the logistics of me dodging alcohol during Christmas party season!

The fact is though, that despite my lack of morning sickness and general feeling fine, we were pregnant and that was that. And so it progressed and we had Audrey and the rest is history.

The second time we got pregnant (end of September 2014), we treated it in a similar way. We were on the same schedule, so the family announcement was set to be the same… Although this time an event prompted me to tell lots of people – as the company I worked for (for 8 years) went into administration and I lost my job. At about 4 weeks pregnant. So I was emotional and worried and kept telling people why this was such spectacularly bad timing.

At 10 weeks we lost the baby. I’m relieved we weren’t further along and even though it was still horrible, it could have been so much worse. Plus we had Audrey around to keep our spirits up.

And so at the beginning of 2015, we were back to square one, trying to make a sibling for Audrey.

I still hadn’t found a job, but we feared more miscarriages or a long period of trying, so decided to just keep on going and see what happened. Naturally I fell pregnant shortly before starting a new job. Oops.

With this pregnancy, we still told lots of people (we can’t help ourselves), but we didn’t feel anywhere near as confident. You just realise how fragile it all is and that people don’t like to talk about miscarriage, so you only really find out how common it is once you’ve had one and others start sharing stories.

So we’ve waited until 20 weeks until “coming out” as expecting baby number 2. Which means we’ve had the scan and this time we’ve found out the sex. Audrey is going to have a baby brother! We didn’t care either way, but I’m feeling excited about having a boy, as it’s new territory. We just genuinely feel blessed to have one child, let alone two. I’m scared of what lies ahead (looking after two?!!), but I’ve always wanted a big family, so haven’t ruled out a third (hmmm, let’s see how that goes).

When Audrey was born, I yearned for a “normal” child – I wanted to make another one quite soon. Well that’s not entirely true… I guess I just really wanted to know we would have a typical child or I wanted to fast forward to having one – to getting that child I was expecting to have in the first place. The great thing is, as time has gone on, I stopped yearning for that child for me, I just really wanted it for Audrey. A sibling, a playmate… a family with more to offer her. I realised that if we couldn’t have any more children for some reason, I didn’t care… We’d adopt to get that bigger family because we just want more than one child. I don’t need to produce a perfect baby to satisfy a need, I have that already, in Audrey.


Quick revamp

Hello loyal readers!

Just a note to state the obvious – I’ve revamped the site ‘theme’. I wanted something a bit cleaner and trendier, so I hope you like our new look.

More Audrey posts of joy to follow this week, I promise…