Starting nursery for our first born and only child was anxiety ridden for us, but fortunately both nurseries our son has been to thus far have met our expectations and, most importantly, make him happy. I want to share the issues we considered to help other parents who are in a similar situation.
If you are a control freak, don't have kids. If you have perfectionist tendencies, keep the condoms on the bedside table. If you've Marie Kondo-ed your knicker drawer and, like Beckham, line up the cans in your cupboards so it all looks perfect, then for goodness sake don't allow sticky-fingered monsters into your life.
In the olden days, I'd be so excited about the prospect of an extra day out of the office. It would inevitably be spent in a pub, or if the sun came out, in a pub garden. I'd sleep, drink, party and repeat. Then along came the kids and a huge overdraft from two maternity leaves.
I started off just trying my best to refrain from making negative comments about myself in front of them. And let me tell you, it hasn't been easy. If they're awake, they're listening to me. (Well, not listening per se, but they're hearing me, anyway.)
I want to warn you, before you read any further, that this will not be your typical mum blog post. I won't be telling you some sarcastic, relatable story about a time that my kids did something aggravating, then toss in some "funny" so that you can walk away with the feeling that this is all normal, lighthearted stuff.
On my first post I introduced myself as mummy to Baby M. It had become my identity and whilst it is still all I really want to be. It's no longer all I am. I am a school leader. And I'm a working mum. I am a mother that juggles two roles and tries to do her best.
As a parent, you can help your daughter believe in her full potential and build her self-esteem to navigate through life's trickiest moments. Here's what you need to do to build her resilience and confidence:
My daughter, Ava, was just shy of three years old when she received her autism diagnosis. I remember sitting in our developmental pediatrician's office and hearing the word "autism" leave her mouth with a sense of unforgettable finality. As a mother, I was at a loss. But three years later, that early diagnosis has changed everything for the better.
Our little man, the second youngest of a family of six, is the quietest one out of them all. He is the kid who very rarely gets told off, but when he does, you feel traumatised for doing so. His whole face breaks but he makes no sound and you are left feeling guilty for something he has done!
Before the children moved in, lots of parents we know told us that nothing prepares you for parenting. If I'm honest, I listened and nodded but felt slightly smug because I've worked with children for 10 years, so surely that would have prepared me.