I have been a mum for over fifteen years now and it has got me thinking about how much has changed in that time. Mothering came easy to me, I was just 23 when Chloe was placed in my arms after a difficult labour. As we took her home to our little rented house we had great plans for a future. We wanted to buy a house and I wanted to train as a teacher. Over the next few years we achieved that, buying out first little house and both Lee and I qualifying as secondary teachers. Since then we obviously grew our family by two more.
In all that time I can honestly say that I have loved being a young (ish) mum. It is now at 38 that I do have to catch my breath when I remember that Chloe is fifteen now. I can still recall being fifteen so easily, I remember the friends I had and the very things I was doing.
But how have I changed?
I am so much calmer than I was and happy within my own skin. I found being a teen quite hard and it wasn’t until I was at University that I started to value myself and treat myself kinder. Up until University I let other people ideas and perceptions influence me. I worried too much about trying to fit in. If only I’d have had a crystal ball or spoken to a psychic I may have been reassured with their answers to my questions.
Becoming a mum gave me such a purpose in life and gave me more drive and determination to be successful. Interestingly I became a mum way before any of my friends, I didn’t miss going out all the time and if anything it made me realise that I didn’t need a large group of friends who meant very little to me. That actually having a few trusted friends was much better. There are some along the way that I wished I had stayed better friends with. It is easy to drift and I have been guilty of that.
Since being a mum I have become a better person. The children are my reason for everything I do and I want them to have amazing opportunities which will help them find happiness. I have even changed career so that it suits the children better at this stage in their life. As a mum I have such a strong personality, I am not afraid to do things that on the surface may upset them if I truly know it is for a greater good. Take choosing a secondary school, Lee and I made a decision to send Chloe (and now Dylan) to a school the other side of town. A school we truly believe in that will give our children the best rounded Education. Chloe did not want to go but we stood firm. We are her parents and not her best friend. It was the right decision and it only took Chloe a few weeks before she was of the same opinion. Sometimes being a mum is not taking the easy option but standing by your decision. The children have quite a bit of freedom – there is not much that gets an outright no. However there are always boundries in place.
Being a mum is wonderful and I am so grateful to have been able to parent three children who are bright, funny and articulate. The baby stage seems a lifetime away now but I have loved growing with my children an watching them blossom. I think every stage has been my favourite stage as I love being on life’s journey with them.
Disclosure: A post in collaboration with The Circle.