Krystal is mum to the gorgeous 1 year old Levi and calls Tasmania home. We chatted with her about balancing life and motherhood and what it was like giving birth at 35 weeks.
Congratulations on the arrival of baby Levi! You recently celebrated his first birthday-how did you mark the occasion?
We did a cake smash a few weeks before and used the photos as invitations for all our family and friends. We had a Wild Things themed party at home which was perfect as we had just finished landscaping outdoors. Unfortunately it was a bit windy and his balloons blew away!
Any tips for new mums who are a bit nervous about leaving the house during those first few months with a baby?
I think I was a crazy mum! The day Levi came out of hospital I took him to a 1st birthday party. I have never been one to just sit down at home as I feel like I get cabin fever. I find getting out made my head feel a lot clearer.
My advice is to be prepared. I always have spare clothes, nappies, wipes, dummies, teethers and toys all packed in my baby bag so all I need to do is pack a lunch box and leave.
Levi was an early arrival for you. What was that experience like?
My waters broke at 32 weeks- the weekend of my baby shower which was a bit crazy. I ended up having him at 35 weeks.
I was put on bed rest for around 3 weeks, the hospital let me go to my baby shower but I was admitted back into hospital that night. For the weeks leading up to having him, I had to check my temperature every 3 hours and have hospital check-ups 3 times a week which involved blood tests, scans and checking Levi’s heartbeat. Each time they’d say “he’s going to come soon” but he never moved and I never went into labour.
The week I had him I was very sick, I didn’t feel right at all. I had pains in my stomach and my temperature kept going up. During my routine hospital check they discovered an infection and told me I would be induced that night.
Levi ended up being emergency Caesarean section as he was getting stressed (and so was I!) I choose to be put under for the surgery as it was something I was really afraid of being awake for. I am relieved that I made that decision as there were some complications during his birth including his breathing being affected.
The staff in NCIU were amazing for the 2 weeks Levi spent there. I cannot say how much it helped us to know that Levi was getting the correct care.
We know you are a bushwalking enthusiast-how has being active changed for you since having a baby?
It has only changed a little bit in that my partner and I don’t go on full day bush walks these days. We choose half day or 3 hour walks now. We ensure we pack the night before so we don’t forget anything. We need all the snacks now!
Levi comes to F45 classes with me which he loves, he yells out when the trainers are encouraging us. He gets cuddles from them too.
Looking back on your first year of motherhood, what do you wish you had known 12 months ago that you know now?
I worked in the early childhood sector for over 8 years so I knew a little bit coming into the development and learnings stages. And my friends have children of their own, so I have always been around kids. I was lucky to have that experience.
The one thing that I learnt is that it is okay to not be okay. I struggled with pre-natal and post-natal depression and my friends and family helped me so much. My hospital and midwife offered me the best support. It’s okay to feel different than you expect you will.
I wish people would tell mums that they are doing a good job, instead of everyone just giving their own opinions. It’s a hard gig and every single person is different and no two children are the same.
So all the mums or mums to be out there YOU’RE DOING A GOOD JOB.
Follow Krystal on Instagram to keep up to date with all things Levi!
There are two types of women in the world: those who pack their hospital bags at 20 weeks ‘because time flies’ and those who pack it in between contractions – also ‘because time flies’. No matter which camp you fall into (and we love you all here at Maze), there are certain things you’ll need for your trip to the maternity ward. I’ve popped together the ultimate hospital bag checklist, so you don’t even have to think about it – just pack the stuff and get on your way when the time comes. Check it out…
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Self care for new mums is so essential, especially when it means setting up good habits for the long term. So how do we do it? How do we get ouroxygen masks on first?