Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart – why I’m taking a blogging break

A hard week

This has been one of the hardest weeks I’ve ever had as a parent. Our family has been in shock, happiness and awe as my eldest daughter Melanie, who lives in England with her partner Craig, a dog called Ozzy and a rabbit called Bruce, went into labour at just 25 weeks.

As you probably know, a normal pregnancy is 40 weeks, which means she was over 100 days too early.

Thankfully Melanie safely delivered a tiny dot of a baby girl on Monday, and these words of explanation come from her Facebook page (used with her permission).

Little Dorothy Anne decided she didn’t want to wait for the next three months to start exploring the world, so came very early. She’s a tough little cookie and already has us wrapped around her little fingers. A huge amount of thanks and respect to the delivery team at Musgrove (Taunton) and the NICU team in Southmead (Bristol), they have been, and still are, our absolute heroes. We are beyond in love and couldn’t be prouder of our brave little Dottie.

Melanie’s Facebook post 22/8/19
Photo of little Dottie holding her mummy’s finger – used with permission

Melanie just happens to be a travel blogger too, The Wandering Darlings – it now seems she’s on a very different journey.

Granny Debs – two granddaughters to love!

So yes I am a grandmother again, which is lovely! I am reminded of how we take birth for granted and how we shouldn’t. I said something along those lines last year when I became a grandmother for the first time –

As I waited for my daughter to go into labour and ultimately give birth, I was reminded that although we’ve been doing it for years, it isn’t something we should take for granted.  It’s a scary and worrying time for everyone.  Being a grandparent is something we shouldn’t take for granted either.  We are fortunate to live in a country with good health systems and nursing staff who care. It has reminded me that giving birth, despite not being a new phenomenon, is still a risky business.

Debbie – Taking stock of life in September 2018

Dottie arrived early…very early!

The risky nature of birth, was rammed home to me this week as we waited for news of my daughter and her newly born daughter, who weighed just a bit over 800 grams. Thankfully, she is currently stable and holding her own. Her parents are doing an amazing job and are being well looked after by the fabulous staff in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

They are learning lots about love, patience, medical terminology and they are finding reserves in themselves that they never knew they had.

It has been a very stressful and worrying time for us all, one minute we’re on cloud nine and the next we are worrying ourselves sick again. And being so far away from them is extra hard.

I am learning a lot too, having not had any previous experience of premature births. There are support groups out there for parents, grandparents, families – anyone who is dealing with a premature birth. I rang and spoke to a lovely caring counsellor at Life’s Little Treasures Foundation, and it helped me enormously. I will be recommending my daughter find something similar in England and not to be afraid to talk to someone about any issues they make have.

We know Dottie is a fighter and she is doing well at the moment, but we also know it will be a long rocky road ahead for her and her parents.

Grateful and fortunate

I couldn’t stay at home in Australia watching on, despite regular messages, phone calls and updates, so I checked that I would be welcome, and booked a flight to England as soon as I could. I’m off tomorrow and I must say it was the fastest packing I have ever done!

I’m feeling all the emotions but the main ones are happiness and love.

I know that I am fortunate to be in a position to be able to do this; I have no real commitments, such as work, anymore; I have the resources to be able to just go; and I have a family that supports me. We are still sticking with our original plans to visit in November for a few months, so we will be back there before we know it. I just wish there was a time travel or a teleport option available!

I am upset that I will be missing my granddaughter Emilia’s first birthday, a family event with my two other daughters, my mother, mother-in-law and other relatives and friends.

I was so looking forward to being with them all to celebrate this exciting milestone but they are all supportive of me going to England to spend time with Melanie, Craig and Dottie. My husband, Papa G, is holding the fort and will have loads of fun with Emilia and our two daughters. We can Facetime on the day and talk to everyone. It won’t be the same but it will be something at least.

So what does this mean to me?

It means I am taking a break from blogging while I am away. I might pop in every now and again and see how things are going, read, comment and share from my favourite bloggers, but I don’t think I will be posting much at all. I may pop up in Instagram and Facebook but I don’t know – I’m not even sure if I am taking my computer with me at this stage. I’m a bit all over the place somehow!

In a way I’m taking care of myself. I need to practise self-care and limiting the amount of outside obligations at the moment is a priority. I’ll still be around in the blogosphere, but just not as often or as actively.

I really just want to spend time concentrating on my family to help them navigate through this emotional time by providing any support I can.

I just want to sit with Dottie, to tell her all about her other home and family on the opposite side of the world.

It’s about a mother’s love for her daughter and in turn, her tiny, tiny daughter. There are no words to describe what I’m feeling.

A A Milne’s Pooh Bear said it best: Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.

Please send your positive thoughts to Dottie and our family. It is a very tough time for us all, but hey, we’re a pretty tough bunch!!

Thanks for your support.

I’ll be back! Don’t miss me too much 🙂

Debbie xx

You can also find Deb’s World in lots of other places – stay in touch by clicking any of the buttons below.


104 Replies to “Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart – why I’m taking a blogging break”

    1. I really appreciate that Donna, she is going well and they even had cuddles with her yesterday, outside the incubator for the first time! I’ll be there in a day or two and I’m nervous, scared and happy all rolled into one. How I am going to endure the long flights I just don’t know!! xx


  1. I’ve been following little Dot’s journey so far on FB. Debs, I knew you’d be out here like a shot.
    Wishing so strength filled vibes for that little girl, and her parents. 💕💞💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes but it was tricky Ritu, as I wanted to be there desperately, but I didn’t want to be too pushy either. So I had to make sure they wanted me with them, which apparently they do 🙂 Thanks so much for your positive thoughts, it means a lot to us especially as you’ve met us both in real life outside of our blogging lives 🙂 xx


  2. All my prayers to your daughters and her strong baby… I am sure having you by her side will make a huge difference. My mom came from Italy for all my post deliveries, and truly, it was the best gift ever. So have a safe trip, enjoy you family and spend your time in the best way. We will miss you but we will gladly wait for your return once things will settle! Good luck and hugs!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Deb I was honored that you confided in me through friendship when all of this happened. Little Dottie, is a fighter and with the amount of love and good wishes from her family and friends she has a good start. It is wonderful you can be with Melanie at this time because we all need our Mums don’t we when life is hard. I also think it is such a wise decision to take a blogging break. Your family needs you and all of your energy and all of your blogging friends will be supporting you as well as waiting here for your return. You are very special Deb and I’m proud to call you my friend. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your continued support and friendship Sue, it means so much to me. Yes we all need our mums and I can’t wait to get over there to see my daughter and to meet my newest granddaughter. xx


  4. Nothing is more important than family and you are doing absolutely the right thing in travelling to support Melanie, Craig and Dottie (not forgetting Ozzy and Bruce!).Your love is important to them and will help them overcome the hurdles that they will undoubtedly face. Just being there for them will be invaluable. We’ll all still be here when you feel the time is right to return to your blog, so don’t worry about us! Take care, and I wish you all joy and good fortune.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh Clive, I really appreciate your kind words. I know you understand the ‘blogging break’ thing and the need we have to get away for a while. I’m a bit scared and nervous but I’ll manage! Thanks so much 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. YVW Debbie! My breaks are more due to indolence than anything else, but you have a very valid reason to concentrate on real life for however long you and your family need. I’m sure your fear and nervousness will disappear as soon as you’re here with them. Take care 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Safe travels Deb and enjoy your contact with Dottie and I an sure you have a huge hug saved up for Mel and Craig. Will be thinking of you all xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Deb I have just read your blog. You certainly need to there with Melanie, Craig and precious little Dottie, there is no better person to be there than a loving supportive Mum.
    Thinking of you all and sending my love and prayers.xx🌺🌺

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Keeping you and your family, and especially little Dottie in our thoughts. Focus on this important time with your daughter and new little granddaughter. We will all be here when you get back.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I support you 150% Debbie and know you will be a huge support to your daughter and see Dottie. Having recently been with my own daughter at the birth of her child my heart seems extra sensitive to the concern, love and the absolute want to be near. We will keep little Dottie close in our hearts. Take all the time you need and we will watch for updates as you are able. Huge hugs and very best wishes to all. Xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought of you and your new baby as I wrote my post Sue. I understand the sensitivity you feel and it’s a special kind of love and compassion. You are a lovely soul and I thank you for keeping Dottie close to your heart and your support to us all. xx

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Sending you all my positive thoughts Deb. I’m so pleased to hear that you are going over to meet little Dottie. Look after yourself. We will all be here waiting for you when you’re ready to get back to the blogging world. Take care x

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh Deb, I can feel the emotion in your words. I can so understand your need to be with them. Family comes first. Always. I wish beautiful tiny Dottie, your daughter and family, and of course you, all the love and strength in the world. Take care xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Miriam, it’s been a tough few days and I’m ready to leave tomorrow. We’ve spent the weekend with Emilia so I’ve celebrated with her for her impending birthday and has lots of cuddles with her. I’m a bit nervous about it all but I have to go to her and I know I have to be strong. Your words will help me get there xx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thinking of you and sending lots of prayers Deb. Glad you got to spend some quality time with Emilia. Life is so precious, we just have to be there with the ones we love, don’t we? I know. I’m sitting here with Doug as he lies on a bed in the Emergency dept and nothing else matters but him right now. I think he’ll be ok but it’s worrying times, so I know how you feel. Big hugs xx

        Liked by 1 person

  11. You’ll certainly be missed Deb – but we’ll all be here when you get back. I’m so glad you’re financially (and physically) able to drop everything and fly over to where you’re most needed and I think we place way too much importance on SM and even on our blogs – they’re very insignificant when weighed against what really matters in life.
    You’ve all been in my thoughts and prayers – and this new little girl has been very blessed with the extended family she’s been born into – I’m looking forward to following along with her milestones and development. I hope your flight is an easy one and that you relish every moment you have with Melanie and Dottie – and YAY!! Grandgirl Number 2 is here to rock your world!! xxxxx Bon Voyage!! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Leanne, your words help a great deal. I’ll be glad to get underway but have enjoyed a fun filled weekend with Emilia with lots of giggles and cuddles. My daughter and son in law have looked after me and taken my mind off things. We have shopped for little clothes and my bag is full of love. Yes girls rule you n my family that’s for sure!! I look forward to updating you on news. Thanks again. xx


  12. Congrats on grandbaby number 2! I’ve done it many times, hopped on a plane just to be with my children or grandbabies. Praying for your little one, she is precious ♥

    Liked by 1 person

  13. My daughter was in the NICU when she was born too early. The doctors were wonderful and the nurses were literally angels. Prayers lifted for your family and this beautiful, precious bundle of love. I hope you can pop in with updates as you are able. Safe travels, take time for you, and don’t lose your sight on focusing on the big picture. I hope you can allow yourself to notice the small answers to prayers each day as they will be there – trust.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much. I’m so pleased to know you have experienced this new world too and take heart from your words. Dottie is doing ok but has has a few worrying moments recently. It’s all very stressful at times but I took notice that she’s moved into a larger size nappy – so that’s a positive!!


  14. Awww, such a sweet little fighter that has joined your family!
    Congrats to all.
    And yes, it will be a hard, rocky road. You’re right – self-care, for yourself and your family, is your priority right now. The blogging world will still be here. Family first.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I can well imagine your need to get on a plane as soon as possible to come and support your daughter. What a shock to have the baby so early but I know that she will be getting the absolute best care in NICU. Thinking of you all and sending my best wishes to Mum and little Dottie.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Deb, I have been preoccupied with a little hurricane, which now pales in comparison to this news, and I am grateful to Sue for providing a link to your post so I could catch up. My heart goes out to you and your family and I sincerely wish your little Dottie good days ahead. If love were enough to make her better, she’d be well in no time at all. My best to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Oh my goodness, what a precious little one Dorothy Anne is. Poor Melanie and Craig, and yourself, I can only imagine how worrying and stressful this time is for you all. I’m glad you were able to take the trip over to be with them. There’s some fantastic care for premature babies in England, she’s in safe hands. I wish little Dorothy Anne all the very best.  ♥
    Caz xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Caz for your kind words and encouragement. I am so happy to have such a caring blogging community around me, giving support to us all and known only though our blogs. It’s a wonderful part of blogging that I never tire of seeing. Dottie is responding to the excellent care she’s getting from the NICU staff but has has some ups and downs. It’s a scary situation and you’re right, it’s very stressful. Thanks again. xx

      Liked by 1 person

  18. I read this a while ago now, but have waited a while to respond. I do hope little Dotty is gaining weight and functioning well. I’m sure your presence over there is being appreciated too. A stressful time for all I’m sure.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Hi Debbie, I can imagine how stressful it must have been for all. Glad that it all went off well.
    Good, you took that decision to fly down to England, because your presence will mean a lot to Melanie, Craig and Dottie.
    Prayers and good wishes.

    Liked by 1 person

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