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Two’s A Crowd
Parenting Parenting
Two’s A Crowd
July 4, 2017
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Parenting Parenting
Two’s A Crowd
July 4, 2017
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To my horror, the following questions were put to me even before my son Bertie’s first birthday; “Are you thinking about baby number two yet?”, “Do you think you’ll move house soon to make room for another baby?”, “What do you want next, a girl or a boy?” – All while I was still getting over an incredibly traumatic labour and the announcement that my newborn baby weighed a whopping 10lb 14oz. (It takes about a year alone for that news to sink in, let me tell you.)

In new-mum time, a year goes by in a flash. One minute you’ve got an immobile baby lying happily on the play mat and the next you’re being followed around the house by a mini teenager, high on life, using said play mat as a hat (don’t ask). The speed of which Bertie grew made me feel like I was constantly playing catch up and even when his second birthday came and went, motherhood, for me, still felt very new. As more and more of my friends revealed they were expecting ‘number two’, I began to question myself as a mother and tortured myself for months over why I wasn’t conforming to everyone else’s life plan. Until one day, enough was enough, and I decided to address my own questions. Why is everyone else ready and I’m not? Unlike a lot of my friends, it took three painful, marriage-testing years to have Bertie. So you’ll forgive me for calling this a well-earned break from ovulation-related stress and feeling like a monthly failure. This is just me reaping my Bertie-shaped reward.

Am I too selfish? Possibly. My career as a freelance journalist is a dream come true, we’re only having to pay for one set of nursery fees and quite frankly, I’m loving my one-to-one Bertie time.

Selfish maybe, happy definitely. Do I not enjoy being a mother as much as everyone else? This is the one that stuck like glue. The words ‘bad mum’ and ‘awful person’ kept springing to mind. But eventually I got it – my enjoyment measures equally to any other mum, I’m just saving the next amazing bit for later.

And just like that, my confusion/guilt/insecurities lifted.

It’s your body, your life, your choice. No one’s circumstances are identical and there’s nothing wrong with simply being content with your lot and pressing pause on rocking the boat.
It’s ok to not feel ready to commit to double buggies and extra car seats just yet, despite what others might have you believe. In the meantime, follow how your friends parent two children, learn from their mistakes and mirror their achievements. Bertie is now two and a half and I’m still not willing to let go of life as I know it…yet. This might make me selfish, it might make me a genius, but one thing’s for sure, it doesn’t make me a bad mother.

Philippa Pearne
@philippapearne
Former Beauty Editor @ Glamour UK. Freelance beauty, lifestyle and parenting journalist.
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