On tidying up

family & parenting, hope, patient

I am messy. I always have been. I don’t know that I ever really learned how to tidy up in a way that made sense to me, learned how to declutter, downsize, re-order, prioritise. I have a big inbox. I have a floor-drobe and now I have kids, a house heaving with stuff. We’ve tidied […]

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Coming (un) clean – why the continence conversation, however difficult, needs to start now

birth, babies, bodies, breastfeeding, feminism, incontinence, shame

Daring to bare is difficult and odd.It also makes you ponder strange things, like why am I persisting in writing about something so embarrassing? Will it come back to bite me in the bum when people realise how rank my health has been? And what will my dad say if he reads a piece I’ve […]

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Call The Midwife – Continence Heroes (Part 1)

feminism, incontinence, patient, shame

Last week’s episode of Call The Midwife caused a Twitter storm before it had even started.  The continuity announcer introduced it as gentle nostalgia. The sort of adjectives suggesting a quaint, mild, uncontroversial, quiet show. I wonder why, I think, snarling and growing another skein, why does the announcer emphasise the idea this show is […]

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AND Another thing. Antenatal Depression

birth, babies, bodies, breastfeeding, depression, hope, shame

Being pregnant is a fragile time, and yet it is easy to imagine any complex feelings you have, from ambivilence to fear, from hysterial to doubt, are unusual and some sort of personal indicator of your lack of worthiness. I always think of Antenatal Depression as Postnatal Depression’s slightly more stigmatised and demonised little sister.  […]

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In Memoriam – Part I

family & parenting

I’m interested, if not an expert, on how we use photography and social media and how it influences our lives and in my case both my experience of (and presentation to the world) of my parenting. Above is a picture I took a few months ago. I kept it on my phone despite feeling very […]

30th June 2012

The elephant in the room

family & parenting

Father’s Day is here. And the season of summer birthdays. When thinking about the former I realise someone is often missing from my blog, which talks a lot about sons and mothers, husbands and brothers, sisters and friends. I think this can often be the way with the big things in your life. Big things […]

17th June 2012


depression, family & parenting

I sometimes think about when I die. @MindCharity and others fill my twitter with discussions of depression and suicide and other nasties in the name of raising awareness. I like these, they are usually messages of hope. And there have been a couple of terrible news stories lately; the worst, probably, a father coming home […]

28th May 2012

Age Appropriate

family & parenting

I’ve written before about Spider-boy’s attachments and obsessions when it comes to TV, notably his hearty love for Fireman Sam and later Gigglebiz, which have now also been consigned to the scrap yard for all things too babyish. He is now, with typical four-year-old full immersion, hooked on Horrible Histories and Deadly 60. I think […]

21st May 2012

Guest post: birth story

birth, babies, bodies, breastfeeding

Here is the link to the birth story post I wrote for blogger The Mule. I discussed the emotions stirred up by recounting birth yesterday Her blog is on my blog roll and can be found here. She has always been supportive and kind to me, whilst producing a provocative, poetic, thought provoking body of […]

14th May 2012

Birth stories…

birth, babies, bodies, breastfeeding, hope

Two weeks ago we were back with my second son in the hospital where my first was born. More hours to think, gazing at our London, which now of course, five years on from my start at mothering, has a great shard across it, cutting up through the skyline. While there I was mulling. A […]

13th May 2012

Technology baby: out of touch


All children I know and have ever met have been obsessed with technology. I suspect it is somehow linked to their connection with the future – they are, of course, closer to it than us. Kicking off the edge of the past, as represented by us, floating out further than we can reach to find […]

28th April 2012

The power of chocolate – Part One

family & parenting

Easter. So much sweet stuff; so little time. My lads love chocolate, though Newborn has a faith of sorts in cocoa. He attacks eggs and bunnies, crams so much in his mouth. He’s prepared to let a third dribble away to get the rest in, and he scoffs with suspicious eyes. They are live with […]

13th April 2012