How many children do you have?
One precious baby girl and a wonderful 12 year-old step son
Was your pregnancy planned or a surprise? In either case, how did you mentally prepare for the awesome responsibility of motherhood?
My pregnancy was a pleasant surprise. My partner and I have always planned for children. Our bundle came a few years earlier than expected. Preparation mentally for me initially was all about preparing for Freya’s birth. I’m a natural worrier so it was a long 9 – months.
If you could tell your pre-baby self anything, what would it be?
There are no magic formulas and it’s harder than I imagined (and I imagined it to be hard!). Also not to be too hard on myself. Motherhood is not a magic power bestowed on us at the birth. Its learned so don’t be hard on yourself if it doesn’t just happen!
Times are definitely a-changing! The stay at home, Betty Crocker-esque archetype of motherhood is being redefined. In what ways are you redefining motherhood?
I think times have changed again. There was a time when women believed that they had to have it all; career, kids and be in high heels but I think a lot of women are embracing being a mother and allowing that to be enough (not some kind of affront to feminism). I’m not saying the career woman is dead but I think that a lot of women are finding a better balance and working in ways that include their children. Personally, I’m working from home (which I never thought I’d be able to) and finding ways to include my baby into my work. I am that women with the baby strapped to her at meetings! All I need is my laptop, sneakers
and a baby bag!
What has been your greatest challenge as a new mother?
Learning to forgive myself for not being perfect, or should I say not being society’s perception of perfect. I’m not the perfect eco mummy nor am I the perfect mother non-stop because there is no such thing.
What is the most rewarding aspect of motherhood?
Everything about motherhood is rewarding. I never thought I would be so rewarded by a gurgle but every milestone Freya hits is like a big rosette with first place on it.
What do you wish the most that your child cultivates and carries into her adulthood?
I hope she cultivates a love for who she is and where she came from. I hope she embraces her heritage.
How do you maintain your sense of self against the self sacrifice and constant vigilance that is demanded in motherhood?
I’ve had 30 years of life being about me. I’m enjoying my life being about someone else. Freya is only 5 months old and she is my world. Perhaps in a month or a year I’ll want part of my life back but this is what I signed up for.
Do you have anything to share with the new or anticipating mothers out there?
Trust your instincts. Your mother, your sister, the baby books may know their stuff and believe me those tips can come in handy but remember that you are the parent. If it feels right for you then do it.
God bless your BEAUTIFUL family Mr and Ms. Natural Belle!
To check out Natural Belle’s awesome blog click here
To check out Baby Belle’s blog (yes Freya has a blog dedicated to her and other adorable baby musings)