You’ve probably gathered I have three children and a fourth on the way. My children are my world. I was never a career driven person; my younger years were spent dreaming of sunny beaches, snowy mountains and foreign cultures, culminating in eventually finding that little piece of heaven after years of nomadic wandering through the world. I never dreamed of children, marriage, houses or cars and had little desire for that kind of happy ever after.
I started out just how I intended, floated through school doing reasonably well with minimal effort, went to and fro between sixth form, administrative office jobs and college before abandoning it all for a new life exploring the Canaries and thus beginning my nomadic future. This brings us to my first and eldest child.
About a year in to my travels I became very ill with a horrendous sickness bug. I couldn’t stomach food, repeatedly passed out and struggled to sleep. The weight fell off and I decided it was time to return home to my mum and the good old NHS. A few weeks later at home I felt no better so I dragged myself off to the GP on the advice of my dumbfounded mother. After a short examination and a quick pee in a pot and my GP was happily congratulating me on my pregnancy! I was stunned. Pregnant? No way.
Turns out I was actually more than four months gone and had no clue about the little lady growing quietly in my belly! However, I was living with my dad, jobless and single, after a long time out of the country. Not an ideal way to become a mum in anyone’s eyes. Still my wonderful parents were supportive as ever so I settled back at Dad’s and ploughed ahead with my pregnancy, finding a temping job in a small office to earn some money so I could move to our own little two up two down.
At 11:59 midday on her due date my little monkey arrived. With her big brown eyes and a shock of black hair she was perfect. For two days we lay in our little bubble in our little house. She’s never been on time again mind you. She is spirited, strong and independent and far too often I see my own traits reflected in those big brown eyes.
I raised her alone for some time, with the help of my family and friends but eventually I met a man who would later become my husband. In hindsight it was a union of convenience, for both of us, but for some time we played at being happy families. This brings us to my eldest son.
His story is less dramatic and much more ‘normal’. After he was conceived my relationship with his father went down hill fast. I had a tough pregnancy, not in the same sickness related way as with my first daughter, but I suffered panic attacks and anxiety throughout. He was born just four days late, in less than two hours, weighing in at 9lb 5oz! I barely made it into the hospital with him, they were edging me down the corridor in between pushes. He was blond as can be and had piercing blue eyes. He was huge but he was wonderful.
I split from his father just nine months later. I stayed in the marital home we had bought and set out again as a single mother; me, my daughter and my son. Another nine months later and he stopped contacting us. I didn’t mind, I believe people choose to be part of other’s lives and it should not be forced. He made his choice and walked away, my children and I would be better off letting him go. Life was good, in fact it was better than good. I had found my calling and was a natural mother. Not the most maternal in the traditional sense but I finally had a purpose and something I was good at.
The next few years passed by, stories from which I’m sure I’ll feel the urge to share in this blog at some point, but the point of this post is to explain how I got to where I am today; happily married with my wonderful children. Through friends I met a man who worked in our local pub, heavily tattooed and different to anyone I’d ever met before. Having tattoos myself, inspired by my tattooed Uncle, I had always been the odd one out in my circle of friends as this was a time when tattooed young women were not so commonplace as today. He was intriguing but that was it. He was fantastic with my children though, making them laugh proper belly laughs by delivering drinks so full of straws they couldn’t get them all in their mouths when we occasionally popped in the pub for lunch.
Some time later I mentioned to a friend that I wanted a new tattoo. She suggested my future husband and I eventually went to him for said tattoo. We got on well and after a few hours chatting, he had invited me to his upcoming gig at a pub. Skeptically my friend and I attended the gig and after a few vodkas I was mesmerised. He could sing, play guitar, he was funny and handsome. It is the biggest cliche I’ve ever heard or experienced but there were literally little fireworks when we shared our first kiss. It took a few months of flirting and casual dating before we allowed ourselves to embark on anything serious but the rest is, as they say, history.
Sometime later, by which time we were living together, engaged and the kids had not only accepted him but chosen him as their Dad and after many months of discussions, we decided to try for a baby. Just a few short weeks later and we were expecting. The pregnancy was a breeze; a little sickness, a few aches and pains but nothing too dramatic. We agreed to participate in a BBC Three television show about expectant fathers being educated in midwifery and delivering their babies under the watchful eye of the midwives that trained them. My man attended his sessions and eagerly learnt everything he could, his one desire being that he would be the very first contact our baby boy would have with the world.
Labour came by surprise and rapidly, just like my previous two. Our baby boy was delivered by his Daddy and the whole thing was captured on film. Unfortunately, just nine weeks later our beautiful little boy fell victim to Bacterial Meningitis and Encephalitis. It was sudden, devastating and very nearly fatal. Our baby boy fought hard for his life and won, albeit with some permanent damage. As a result of the damage done to his brain by the infections he is developmentally delayed in some areas, blind in one eye and suffers with an eye condition called Nystagmus. He is however incredibly intelligent, delightful and an absolute little legend. It’s been a long road but he continues to astound and amaze us.
After our little fighter was released from hospital we moved house to our lovely family home and in 2013 we got married, in a beautiful ceremony full of our closest friends and family. That just about brings us to present day.
Here I am, just over seven months pregnant with a little girl, playing at being a housewife and stay at home mum for the first time ever after giving up work this past summer and loving life so much that I was inspired to tell all you wonderful people all about it.
I hope you enjoy reading my stories and following this little adventure that is my life. Thanks for taking the time to stop by.