Children: Faith, 4 years
You find yourself wishing your baby’s life away, I really did with Faith and I couldn’t wait for the next milestone, but with Ethan I don’t feel like that. I’m enjoying him being a baby and I’m fairly sure the lack of sleep wont last forever. He’s my last baby and I want to savour him.
I remember getting home with Faith, putting her in a Moses basket and thinking ‘what am I meant to do with her?’. It felt crazy that someone had allowed me to be in charge of such a tiny thing.
Bringing Ethan home was like completing a circle; our family is complete and he is the final piece, so it felt less overwhelming and more celebratory.
The best/worst advice:The best advice I had was no advice. Despite reading all the books and my years of experience with children, there were so many times when I felt completely clueless. I’d cry on the phone to my mum about what I should do, and she never advised me, she’d ask what I wanted to do and told me to do it. You already have a gut feeling about what you think is best and I think going with that feeling is the best advice anyone can give.
The hardest parts of being a mother: When I was 27 weeks pregnant with Ethan, my own mother passed away. She’d been diagnosed with Lymphoma for about a year and we knew it wasn’t going to end well, but nobody expected it to happen at that time. Since then it’s been a rough road, there have been ups and downs and I am so very sad that she never got to meet Ethan. She was the only person to say he’d be a boy because she’d had a dream about him and I take comfort from this, it’s like she had a sense of him before he came.
It’s hard not having my mum here to share both Faith and Ethan’s every achievement with, I still think how I must text her about something that one of them has done and then remember that I can’t, so it’s like an ongoing grieving cycle. Faith also had a close relationship with her so dealing with her grief has been, at times, difficult. She asked one day if Mamar (from not being able to say Grandma) had a mobile phone with the angels because she wanted to tell her that she loved her.
My mum was the type of mum I aspire to be, she was gentle, loving and strong and I hope that I will be the same.
The best parts of being a mother:Producing two amazing little people is pretty awesome! Getting to know them both, learning things about them and things about me is a lifelong journey I look forward to treading.
I cherish so many moments, from the way only I can soothe Faith after a scraped knee to the little ‘in’ jokes we have and how we’re introducing Ethan to the ways of our family. It’s no bed of roses at all, but like everything in life, you have to take the rough with the smooth.
Has becoming a mother changed you?:Without a doubt! Sometimes I look at my life now and it’s unrecognisable. I never thought I’d embrace family life but I have and I wouldn’t change any aspect of that. I like spending time with my children, I used to look forward to getting drunk at weekends, now I’m looking forward to going to see Disney on Ice! This isn’t to say my life revolves around them, I’d still snap the hand off a babysitter and I still like a night out, it’s just that they’re rarer treats nowadays.
What advice would you offer to new and expectant mums?:Basically, go with the flow, don’t sweat it and it won’t always be like that. It’s hard to see a way out during the difficult times but one day you’ll look back and laugh (or maybe cry!).