Monday, 21 January 2013
My first top tip for incompetent parents (and even competent parents) is the Osteopathic Centre for Children in Wandsworth.
This noble organisation is a charity that provides osteopathy for children and mothers. I'd heard good things about cranial osteopathy for babies (helping with collic, crying, sleeping etc) while pregnant but when my littlun was born with a huge cut and bruising on his head finding an osteopath became a priority. The damage to my boy's neck (he was stuck for several hours - no dwelling here...) and scalp (horrible ventouse delivery - still not dwelling...) meant he couldn't breastfeed. The hospital could hardly have cared less (really not dwelling...).
Having done some research (thanks Mumsnet), I quickly realised the OCC was the place to go. It was over the other side of London and, Lord forbid, on the other side of the river, but we took Cosmo along at one week old, then two weeks, then three weeks. I can't tell you how wonderful these people are. Firstly they took really interest and care in my baby, something I was extremely grateful for after the treatment we'd received at the hospital. And secondly because of the results. At the time, I thought it was nothing short of miraculous. And I still do.
Bear in mind, my little bub couldn't even be put down in my arms to breastfeed without being extremely uncomfortable or in pain. After every session of osteopathy, we came home and he breastfed for half an hour. Gradually over about six weeks, he got to the point where he could breastfeed 24/7. (The fact I had blocked ducts, blood blisters, blebs, cracks nipples, engorgement and nipple thrush meant I was now more reluctant than he was...) Many people say there's no science or proof behind osteopathy, but I tell these people to GO WHISTLE. We saw real, tangible results in the short and long term. And a baby's response to treatment can't be psychosomatic, can it?
A third reason for the OCC's wonderfulness is that the full rate is only £35 a session, a fraction of the cost of osteopaths in my area (approx. £100 a session). Furthermore, you don't actually have to pay. That's right - they're a charity. So if you can't afford it, you can make any contribution you like. Or nothing at all. All the osteopaths are volunteers. We saw Simon Grayling. The man's a genius.
p.s. Just a quick note on the practicalities for other incompetent mothers: the centre is really pram and baby friendly. They have couches to wait on when you turn up an hour early (yes, I was desperate), tissues for those baby blues (yup...), roomy toilets and special chairs for feeding. We took Addison Lee cars which were a mixed bag but more affordable than a black cab.
Posted by The Incompetent Mother at 10:38