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Musings with P-boo the Cheeky Toddler: Part 3 – Ijeoma Okolo

Image Source: Valenbutec, Accessed 13/05/2017 Me: So, do you have any words of wisdom for me? I say this as an obvious joke. My obvious joke sails over his curly head. P-boo: I think you need to get a life. Aunty Efua says Fridays are for going out. Mummy and daddy have gone out, but you’re sitting here talking to me. Me: Buddy, your parents begged me to baby-sit so I’m doing you and them a favour. In fact I’m taking you to bed. Next time they can force Efua to take care of you. Nonsense. P-boo: Aunty Efua is sad now. It makes me sad. She was crying yesterday because that man that fixes our lights was angry with her. Me: What man? Sam, the electrician? P-boo: Yes, the tall one with the hair on his face. He always brings me a new toy when he comes to visit. I like him. Me: I’m going to need to talk to your mum about that. The last thing we need is for you to accidentally say something to your dad… P-boo: Say something like what? Me: Nothing. Never mind. You were saying? Why was she crying? P-boo: He said he’s ...
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Musings with P-boo the Cheeky Toddler: Part 2 – Ijeoma Okolo

Image Source: Valenbutac, Accessed 13/05/2017 P-boo: What else should I know to prepare me for the world? Me: Your parents are building a good foundation for you to understand and have respect for females. You need to develop that foundation. Women have come a long way in the last six decades, but we still deal with many issues that you may not notice because they are not part of your daily struggle. We have to be careful where we walk at night and even when you say “No” politely to a man who wants to take you for a walk, he may call you an ugly name for saying “No.” There are even more terrible things that you will find out when you get older. Remember what your aunty Efua said about men in her office saying she was angry because of her perio…her peewiyod? That was very disrespectful. It can be very difficult for successful women at work. If you work aggressively to get ahead you are seen as unpleasant and greedy while people praise men for being the same way. On the other hand, if it is in your nature to be nice to everyone, you may be ...
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Musings with P-boo the Cheeky Toddler: Part 1 – Ijeoma Okolo

Image Source: Valenbutec, Accessed 13/05/2017 “You have to see things from my perspective. You wail and cry really loudly. It’s frustrating and uncomfortable for me.” It’s Friday night. I should have been out enjoying the social scene somewhere, but my boring self had been home alone with a bottle of wine and a documentary about post-colonial Africa. I had foolishly said as much to my friend when she called and casually asked what I was doing. That was a big mistake. She had a favour to ask. She and her husband had been dying for a night out. Their two older children were at sleepovers, the live-in help had had to pay an emergency visit to her sick mother, and Efua her younger sister-in-law was out mysteriously again. She said she was going to have to look into that more because she suspected Efua was seeing the handsome bank executive she’d introduced to her last week. (I assumed she’d made up the story of the banker for her husband’s benefit whom I could hear in the background. She and I knew that story was a lie.) Anyway, could I please please please come and watch the two babies for about ...
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WhatsApp Discussion Series: Transferring Gastric Illness Through Breastfeeding

In our WhatsApp discussion group, we share our experiences and knowledge about real time issues that come up in our everyday lives. Posts in the WhatsApp Discussion Series are snapshots of these conversations. Certain words or phrases may occasionally be modified to make them more readable and names are removed for confidentiality purposes. However, the conversations we post are mostly verbatim for authenticity. Guys I need help. So Nana has been screaming his head off.Yesterday I ate from outside and had a really bad tummy ache. I kept feeding him my milk as usual, but I think he is reacting to my milk.Is that possible? COMMENT 1: Do you have Infacol? COMMENT 2: Yeah I gave him Infacol and it’s better, but should I keep feeding him my breast milk? COMMENT 3: Was gonna say. Yeah it probably has transferred so maybe you need to get rid of a few pumps? COMMENT 4: I’d say dump for the rest of the day. Try breast-feeding him again tomorrow. By then, hopefully it would be better. COMMENT 5: Pump the first two before he feeds. And please while breastfeeding avoid eating from outside cos their tummy is very sensitive. COMMENT 6: If ...
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POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION IN MOTHERS

Postpartum depression What does it feel like to have postpartum depression or postpartum anxiety?  What are the signs or symptoms? How do you know when you have it? And if you do have it, what should you do? POSTPARTUM   DEPRESSION Postpartum depression is a serious issue for many mothers. The birth of a baby can trigger a jumble of powerful emotions, from excitement and joy to fear and anxiety. However, it can also result in something you might not expect — depression.  Postpartum depression may be mistaken for baby blues at first, but the signs and symptoms are more intense and last longer, eventually interfering with your ability to care for your baby and handle other daily tasks. Symptoms usually develop within the first few weeks after giving birth, but may begin later — up to six months or even a year after birth. Some common symptoms include:  sadness, mood swings, impatience, anxiety, fatigue, restlessness, poor concentration, feeling overwhelmed, crying spells, appetite loss, eating more than usual, and sleeping troubles. In some cases there may be difficulty bonding with your baby, withdrawal from family and friends, and reduced interest and pleasure in activities you used to enjoy. In severe situations, ...
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Discussion of the day: What do you do if your baby won’t drink formula?

Our Whatsapp group is quite active during the week. One of the topics that came up recently was babies who would not take formula after exclusive breastfeeding. Do babies get used to breast milk so much that they are unwilling to try another milk? What does one do in a case like that? My daughter refused to try any bottle and so I had to switch to spoon feeding her cereal with milk straight from the breasts.😳 Here’s what was said: Lead comment: My baby won’t drink formula milk. I’ve tried all the brands. Nada! Only breast milk and I’m not a big person and I’m afraid my breasts will vanish cos chale after breast feeding goals is important.. Now I regret going exclusive with her. Comment 1: Went thru the same and with my baby and being preterm i gave in but eventually i had Enfamil and similar (the already prepared ones) sent to me from Canada turns out she preferred that to the powder formula Comment 2: How old is she though? Maybe there are other foods she can try for now. Give her some time off and then introduce the milk again. Until then let her enjoy ...
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Meet our guest expert on kids, parenting and family- Veronica Owusu

I’m excited and honored to introduce to you our guest expert on kids, parenting and family for EverythingBabyandMore. Veronica Owusu is a blogger and speaker  The Gold Mine Treasure,  a teacher, a writer, life coach, motivational speaker, and a mom! A mom of a 2 year old! Yes amongst the other things that makes me very happy because she can understand when we say “my child says she can’t wear her socks when I know she can, how can I encourage her?” Veronica usually writes motivational/inspirational articles about finding happiness in the NOW, Enlightenment, Self-Awareness, Consciousness and most importantly, the Law of Belief and eliminating Limiting Beliefs and replacing them with Empowering Beliefs in order to create a reality of self-fulfillment and success. She’s an expert in Early Childhood Education, 3- 9 years old (over 10 years of experience in Poland and The UK) and is currently in the middle of her Personal Life Coach Training and will be an International Certified Personal Life Coach by the end of the year! AMAZING right!! Let’s ask her all the questions in the world! Im happy to say that she’ll be contributing her articles about Kids, Parenting and Family, giving her opinions ...
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Discussion of the day: What are your thoughts on spanking your kids?

Spare the rod and spoil the child is an adage that appears in the Bible (Proverbs 13:24). What does this mean to you? What is acceptable and what is not? Some of us grew up being spanked as kids. Some claim it made them stronger and others have chosen new age methods. What other methods can we use to discipline our kids? Comments from @everythingbaby whatsapp forum: Comment 1 :  I spank mine cos sometimes they misbehave intentionally. Comment  2 : It’s just important to be calm. And not do it out of anger Comment 3:  U’re the same person who will feel sad by their tears and have to treat them if they get hurt. It’s always good to do everything in moderation Comment 4 : Nothing wrong with a few spanks to serve as a reminder next time they think of being naughty but ain’t nobody else touching my baby. That’s a No No. And I won’t do that to somebody else’s Comment 5 : Nothing wrong with spanking. Most of us were spanked as kids. And here we are! But I am trying the no spanking method now. The Montessori way of doing things and so far ...
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My First Birthing Experience – Peter Osei, father of 2

After waiting for nine months, the day finally came. However, before the day arrived, we went through a very painful experience. My wife did not throw up like most women, but she developed Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP) during her second trimester. The pain was so severe that she could only sleep (if at all) upright on a sofa. So for 5 months she didn’t sleep on a bed. Her hip would snap every time she tried to get up from bed. The sound of the snap was so loud that it sometimes actually woke me up from sleep. Delivery day came on a normal Sunday. We were resting up for delivery day on Wednesday. We knew because it was a scheduled C-section. We were advised that that would be best because of my wife’s PGP. Besides, our baby was in breach position anyway. However, on that Sunday, God had other plans. I had just stepped out when my wife called to tell me that she hadn’t felt the baby moving all night. We rushed her to the hospital and when the doctors assessed the situation, they scheduled her to go under the knife three hours later. My mother-in-law and I ...
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Being Part of the Multikids Family – Rebekah Mate-Kole Rampe

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” ― Nelson Mandela I’ve been interning at Multikids Foundation for the past three months. Coming into it, I didn’t realise how much it would impact my life and how I would immediately fall in love with the work they do. I have never been happier waking up and going to work, knowing it was all for something bigger than myself. Multikids Inclusive Academy is a little school in East Legon. The school is 6 years old. What makes Multikids unique is that it is Ghana’s first and only fully inclusive school, offering mainstream education as well as special education. Multikids combines specialist creative, academic and vocational teaching and learning based on the UK national Curriculum for students from 6 months to 21 years old. What makes the environment of inclusion thrive here is the excellent therapeutic services available at the school, including physiotherapy, speech and language therapy and occupational therapy. Mandy Budge, the founder of Multikids, recognised that there was a great need for institutions like this in Ghana. Multikids Inclusive Academy therefore extends their services to the community, and thanks to the inception of Multikids ...
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My First Birthing Experience – Efua’s Story

Name: Efua Age: 28 Number of kids: 1 Hospital & country of delivery: North York General Hospital, Toronto-Canada What your journey to becoming pregnant? Was it easy? Ha! When my husband and I were trying to get pregnant the journey seemed tough, but looking back I would say it was not that bad. I guess it just didn’t happen as quickly as we thought it would. You grow up hearing that as soon as you have unprotected sex you can get pregnant… so fast forward to June 2015 when after 6 months of marriage we decided we were ready to start trying. I was traveling in August that year, so we decided to start after my trip and of course we expected it to happen quickly. It didn’t. First of all, my cycle was starting to trip up, not by much, but if you’re not having sex every single day of the week and you are monitoring your cycle, it can get frustrating (by the way monitoring does kill the libido.) There was always heartbreak and disappointment whenever I saw my period, and for some reason whenever it was supposed to be “go time”, my husband and I found ourselves ...
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Veronica’s Story

Name: Veronica Age: 30 Number of kids: 2 Hospital & country of delivery: Pisam (Abidjan, Ivory Coast); Lister (Accra, Ghana) What your journey to becoming pregnant? Was it easy? We are one of those lucky couples that get pregnant whenever we decide to. I am a very fertile soil 🙂 One day we just decided that we should have our first kid and we did. We are a no-nonsense kind of couple 🙂 Then we moved to Ghana, I could not find a job and wanted to pop all my babies before 30, so we got pregnant a second time. It was all very logical 🙂 Did you deliver on your expected due date? Which hospital did you use and what did you think of their services? I had to be induced for my first one. I just went to the gynaecologist for a routine check and she told me that the following day I’d have my baby. He was born at nearly 38 weeks. My second one was an elective C-section. He also came at almost 38 weeks. I was happy with both hospitals, but I preferred the room and food in Abidjan. What was your birth plan and did it go according ...
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My First Birthing experience – Kwame Nkum

34 year old father of 3 We were sure we were prepared. We had watched YouTube videos, read books, and gone through multiple to-do lists. We had gone over the sequence of events that occur during childbirth and researched how the contractions are supposed to occur so that we would not be surprised by anything. Well, it turns out you can’t be prepared for your first time…or second or third in my case. Dorcas’ water broke earlier than we expected it to. Come and see panic! Her water broke at home and we lived 40 minutes away from the hospital. I called my mom and then my mother-in-law. I literally carried her to the car and drove frantically to our family hospital with my hazard lights on, honking like an idiot almost all the way there. It was our understanding that once the water broke we would have the baby out within an hour or two. In the end, it took another 8 hours for my wife and I to hold the baby. During this beautiful and memorable experience, I learnt to massage my wife, comfort her, feed her, and pamper her like I had never done before. At a ...
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“Don’t Be A Hero. Take the Meds” – One mother’s Pregnancy Experience

What your journey to becoming pregnant? Was it easy? It was a surprise pregnancy and it was a relatively easy one with no complications. I spent most of the 9 months in nesting mode, getting a business started and getting my home ready for the baby’s arrival. Did you deliver on your expected due date? Which hospital did you use and what did you think of their services? I delivered 2 weeks past due date with the help of acupressure at Bethel Clinic in Tema. Bethel Clinic was okay. In retrospect, I wish they would have done more coaching so I could have perhaps avoided an emergency C-section. What was your birth plan and did it go according to plan on the D-day? My birthing plan was to go all natural. What was I thinking? It ended with an emergency C-section. What was the birthing experience like? After an evening of acupressure, my water broke a little after midnight. I went back to bed and woke up to mild contractions which quickly became stronger and more frequent. I was in hospital by 7 or 8 am. I was dilated up to 8 cm without any aids as planned- just lil’ ...
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My First Birthing Experience: Recollections of an Outwardly Composed but Secretly Traumatized Father – Martin Beeko

The Surprise Sleepover The day started harmlessly enough. With about 4 days to go before our baby was 40 weeks, we went in for a regular check up only to be told by the doctor that my wife’s amniotic fluid was a little low and could be leaking. He wanted to play it safe and induce labor so we had to go home, prep and return to the hospital. The first induction process was not bad, but the second one got real, really fast. My wife went from pacing up and down with slight moans to screaming, crouching and generally not knowing what to do with herself. Meanwhile, all I could do was hold her while she looked into my eyes for reassurance. I kept thinking, She is in torturous pain and all I can do is HOLD HER HAND! What kind of crap is that? Going into labor, I knew I was supposed to be strong for her, but truthfully speaking, I was completely terrified. From the moment I found out she was pregnant, horror stories of pregnancy complications had been flying uncontrollably through my head and this escalated to new heights when we got to the hospital for ...
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Penis growing inside my stomach ! My 2nd delivery experience – CHRISTAL BEEKO

Yaaaayyyy I was pregnant again! Noooo I had to endure morning sickness again and the entire pregnancy journey is just not my thing. I don’t even have it bad and I get depressed just thinking about it. I mean who wants to feel sick 4 months straight! That taste in your mouth and just being tired ALL the time is just not my cup of tea. Fast forward through that depression to 16 weeks when I found out it was a boy!! Now all of a sudden there’s new excitement. I have a penis growing inside my stomach! Yikes! Lol no I don’t feel the actual penis in my stomach but there’s just this excitement about having a BOY! With a girl as my first born the boy just completes my family. The few issues I faced along the way included nausea for an additional month as compared to my daughter. They say it’s because of my boys’ hormones. I also kept getting contractions from 34 weeks going so my doctor advised that I take a steroid shot to speed up his lung development just incase he decided to come earlier than expected. That injection was so painful! In fact ...
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Difference between day and night. My first birth experience- Christal Beeko

My 1st birth experience compared to my second was the difference between   day and night. Very simply put, I was going to grab the bull by its horns this time around. My first baby was a disaster. By Gods’  grace it was a smooth delivery but I had no clue what to expect and that alone made everything go wrong. First of all no one can describe the pain you are about to experience. I would imagine that it is that of a bus running over you and reversing back over your body one more time just  incase you didn’t feel the pain bad enough. My plan was a natural delivery with no pain medication. I begged for an epidural when I started wailing and trembling as her head was descending, but it was too late. It’s excruciating but somehow you will pull through. Let’s rewind a little bit. I received my first induction gel at around 10pm and nothing really happened. My second induction gel at 2am is when it really hit me bad. It began with cramps then I started trembling from cold. Out of no where I felt as though I was in Alaska and my teeth ...
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My Pregnancy Experience -29 years old Mother of 2 kids.

“I did not plan to get pregnant……”  says  29 years old Mother of 2 kids. Hospital & country of delivery ?                                                                                                                 Lister, Ghana. What your journey to becoming pregnant? Was it easy? Did you have any miscarriages or did you have to go through any fertility treatments to get pregnant? (Please share your experience and emotions about it and what helped you get through it) Answer:  I did not plan to get pregnant (both times)…I’m terrible or rather lazy with contraception. My pregnancies were not easy. My body changed drastically; excessive water retention, something called Pelvic Girdle Pain (which affected mobility and later informed my choice of delivery). I am also Rh-; so the need to get my shots in a timely manner, etc. Honestly, I did not have time to deal with my emotions while I was pregnant; I just went through the motions because I knew a baby was coming and there was no place for my feelings of stress, discomfort or pain. I had a mission and I had to do the best I could to complete it. The joys and relief and all the pent up emotions came after…..way after. After babies were finally healthy, strong, ...
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Natalie’s Pregnancy Experience

Name: Natalie Age:  28 Number of kids: 1 kid Hospital & country of delivery: Medifem, Ghana; What your journey to becoming pregnant? Was it easy? Did you have any miscarriages or did you have to go through any fertility treatments to get pregnant? (Please share your experience and emotions about it and what helped you get through it) Answer:  Luckily for me we got pregnant 3 months after marriage. We were more focused on enjoying our honeymoon rather than making a baby. Baby making can be fun and easy 1st by God’s grace and 2nd if it’s not your only focus Did you deliver on your expected due date? Which hospital and where you happy with their services? Answer:  My adorable son was 10days late so I was induced. Medifem took good care of us. What was your birth plan and did it go according to plan on the D-day? Answer: Not at all. I had researched about being induced but no amount of videos can prepare you the pain. Forced labour is PAINFUL Tell us your birth experience Answer:  Dec 18, 2014 was induced at 4am, had breakfast chatted with family. Until the pain begun around 8am till baby popped out ...
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Mariam’s Pregnancy Experience

Name: Mariam Age:  31 Number of kids: 2 kids Hospital & country of delivery: Lister Hospital; I was happy with everything honestly. Dr and nurses took good care of me and gave me all the attention I needed What your journey to becoming pregnant? Was it easy? Did you have any miscarriages or did you have to go through any fertility treatments to get pregnant? (Please share your experience and emotions about it and what helped you get through it) Answer:  Getting pregnant for me was easy I thank God so much. First and second.  After Aiden I put in the IUCD and when I took it off I got pregnant immediately Did you deliver on your expected due date? Which hospital and where you happy with their services? Answer:  I never delivered on expected date. For both pregnancies I delivered about 2 weeks early. What was your birth plan and did it go according to plan on the D-day? Answer:  Birth plan was natural birth and thankfully both were natural. Tell us your birth experience Answer:  It was tooooo painful! I wasn’t given any epidural so I felt every bit of pain. And since I was induced, contractions were ...
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