9: Baby A’s Story – Congenital Heart Defect

The day of baby A’s birth was a calm and happy day. All staff involved in the c-section were positive and extremely supportive, and I was completely relaxed as a result. It wasn’t long before baby A was shown to me over the screen and all I remember is a head full of dark hair.

It was at this point that one of the surgeons called in the paediatric consultant, and all I heard was there was meconium present as she was born. As a result Baby A wasn’t handed to me for skin to skin, and instead was whisked away to have her oxygen levels and various other stats checked.

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8: Mental Health Awareness Week

I’ve been thinking about what to write, or how to begin, a post about mental health awareness – and every time I start this post there’s voices saying “don’t do it, don’t say it out loud”. But I know that’s probably the reason why I should.

I have met many people over the years who are suffering from a variety of mental health issues, and every year through my work I have more and more students who share their struggles with me too. I wish I had the ability to help them more than just being a listening ear and guidance on how to navigate their studies or training commitments , but I’ve learnt that often that’s enough and can ease the day to day pressures for them.

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7: I Don’t Present, I Teach

I don’t present,
I teach.
And sometimes that’s messy
With parts that are structured
And sometimes that means we
Diverge from what was thought of
We’re constantly assessing
Responding and progressing

I don’t present,
I teach.
So I responded, I adapted
I re-planned it all and reacted
I changed the way I taught
I tried to be interactive
I transferred it all online
And a new classroom was created

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6: The Pressure to Procreate

I always wanted a big family, ever since I can remember, and I used to wonder why my parents only had 4 children especially when they married so young. I had envisioned that after finishing studying, I would get married and have lots of children, and it never crossed my mind that things might not be as straight forward as this.

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5: Work-Life Balance

I’ve spent the last 16yrs working in some form or another, bar 9 months I spent learning Arabic in Alexandria, Egypt. I’m a trained secondary mathematics teacher, but have worked across the phases (primary, secondary and college), and have spent a decade or so in Teacher Education. Working in HEI (university) has always suited my lifestyle, with the flexibility of working on and off site, as well as allowing me the opportunity to travel to schools across London.

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4: Enchiladas

Today we made enchiladas…we’ll sort of. The first time I had enchiladas was at my brothers house and I was intrigued as to how this wrap, chicken, cheese and tomato dish was baked and tasted so good. On further investigation, it turns out that my sister-in-law had bought the “kit” and said it was quite straight forward to make. So I took it upon myself to buy the Old El Paso enchilada kit a couple of months later from my nearest store, only to find they were out of stock!

My only other option was to buy the ingredients separately and just make the sauce myself. And thus was born, “chicken and cheese wraps filled with tomatoey sauce and baked in a dish with more sauce and a sprinkle of cheese”.

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3: Working from Home

I’ve been “at work” since about 8am this morning (having only switched off at around 1am last night from student messages)…team meetings, live teaching sessions and student phone calls ended at around 6pm, but since everything has moved online “work hours” have disappeared, and I’ve already had a number of messages and queries from students since then…and now my brain is like mush. It doesn’t want to think and it doesn’t really want to be staring at another screen either.

So today I’ll leave you all with a short poem I’ve just written about how I’m feeling:

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2: Weaning

There really should be more support in weaning babies. I know there are some mother and baby classes for this in my area, but I really think there should be more support out there for those babies who don’t enjoy food or just don’t tend to gravitate towards it as much as we do as adults.

Baby A was born with a heart condition (more on that in another blog post) and before the surgeon could operate on her she had to be a certain weight. The only issue with that was, as a result of the heart condition baby A struggled with breathing and feeding at the same time. So inevitably the minute she would struggle with the breathing she would stop feeding.

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1: Ramadan 2020: Goal Setting

Ramadan 2020 is upon us, and although normally I won’t set goals, I do often loosely think about what I hope to achieve in this month. That being said, I am still working full-time (albeit from home as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic) and have a 1yr old to keep entertained…so my goals will not be big, but I’m hoping I can be consistent with the ones I do set instead.

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