Would you be happy with just one child?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to be a mother. When I was 14/15 years old, I’d talk about how many children I wanted and even what some of their names would be. At the time I had the crazy idea that I wanted 5 children. Clearly I didn’t really understand the responsibilities (and expense) behind raising a child.

When I was married and planning S, we talked about children and I said I’d wanted 3. I imagined raising them, wandered whether they’d be boys or girls, what their personalities would be like. When people talked about having only one child, I was rather obnoxious. I’d say things like: “Imagine you’re on a road trip in the States, going to Disney…would you rather have one child in the back sitting quietly on their Ipad or two children bickering and playing in the back?” I was really against the idea of only one child.

And then I had S. And very soon after, my circumstances changed. And suddenly the idea of having any more children was put on the back burner. And as S started to grow, I wandered whether this one child choice was such a bad idea. In fact, I couldn’t believe that I’d be able to love another child as much as I love S. Now of course, I’ve read about how common this is. Most mother’s feel that way after they have their first and then when they go on to have more, they just feel like their love expands to include the other’s. I imagine that to be a pretty amazing feeling.

I’ve been through a plethora of emotions since I became a single parent. Is this it? Will I only have one child? Will S be okay without a sibling? Will he be lonely? Will he be spoilt? And then I made peace with it because I realised, it all comes down to how you raise your child. And in today’s day and age of play dates and whatnot, S is never really on his own. He understands the concept of sharing with friends and he absolutely loves babies and is quite affectionate towards them. He has mine (and my parents) undivided love and attention which makes him a very secure and happy child.

I have a sibling, Sam. We’re only a year apart and as children we fought all the time. I was a tom boy and the small age gap meant we had a lot of mutual friends. He didn’t always like this. As we grew older we made our own friends and in many respects grew apart, each choosing to do our own thing. He lives in Nigeria and absolutely loves it there while I live in London and love my life here. I love him, respect him and know I can always count on him for advice/anything really, but he’s not always my go to person. That may be because we live in different cities or just because we’re quite different in our thinking. Either way, I have people I can talk to/confide in who aren’t my siblings.

S is very attached to my cousins girls who live in Nigeria. He sees them only once or twice a year and yet they have such a close bond. When they meet, it’s like they just saw each other the previous week. He misses them when they leave and often asks for them. With the help of modern technology, they’ll be able to have a relationship growing up, even living thousands of miles apart.

11218862_10155996907730727_8075185049150462320_n

In the 80s when I grew up, having a sibling meant you’d always have someone to play with, someone who was around. In today’s world, I think even as an old child, you’ll always have that. And so even though I’m open to having more children, I’m also okay if I don’t. Because I know my child will never really be alone and I also know my only child will always be enough for me.

”Twinkly
And then the fun began...

My Random Musings

Happy 2nd birthday

My darling boy,

How quickly your second birthday has come around, the last year has been a real whirlwind.

I want you to know what immense joy you bring to my life. The way you say mama first thing in the morning and even in your sleep, the way you’ll run across the room just to give me a hug and your contagious laugh, oh I could listen to your laugh for hours. Our cuddle time at 7 in the morning and the way you say “more more” in between your fits of laughter when I’m tickling you. The way you say “ahh” every time we see a bus and the funny faces you make in the bath. The way you sleep with your bum in the air and your ability to find Candy Crush and start playing on my phone!!

You are such a happy child with a bold and daring personality. You love your little bike and race around the house on it like you’re on a track. I can’t wait to see your face when you come down and discover your new car in the living room tomorrow morning.

I have two wishes for you on your birthday my baby boy:

1. May you always have an inquiring mind and a curious nature, for those are the qualities that will keep you learning throughout your life. And as you learn, spread your knowledge, never hoard it. The more people you can touch and make a difference to in your life, the better.

2. Be daring, be bold and be courageous for you’ll never know what’s out there if you stay in your comfort zone. Don’t be like your mama and procrastinate. The world is your oyster, go out and take what’s yours!

And one more for good luck:

3. I wish you happiness, in everything that you do but I also wish for you some challenges. For it is only when you are challenged that you grow and overcoming challenges builds character.

Happy 2nd birthday my little pooboo, love you forever.

1461153_10153770975740727_1830115335_n

Mama xxx

Mums' Days

Cry it out (CIO) vs. Wait it out (WIO)

You’ve got your beautiful three month old baby in your arms, they’re hopefully over the colic or reflux, your baby is starting to form a good routine but the only thing you’re battling with is sleep (or lack of!). If you weren’t lucky enough to have a baby who slept through the night from a young age, one of the things that you may have considered is letting your child cry it out. CIO is a method of sleep training that involves allowing your child to cry until they get tired and fall asleep (there are also some interval crying training methods). Many people believe that at 3-6 months our babies are “smart” and know that if they cry a mother will go in and cuddle, rock or feed them to sleep and so wail for attention. But once they get the idea that their mom isn’t going to go into them, they start sleeping through. This can usually take a few nights.

The other side of the coin is a wait it out method. The WIO method does as is says on the box. You WIO until your child is ready to sleep on their own, until they are ready to sleep through the night. Many people who follow a WIO method do so because they believe excessive crying affects the babies brain cells, releases high levels of cortisol into their blood stream or simply because they cannot hear their baby cry.

a1969e20bf096c677bead1d54408a4d9

I’ll be honest, I left S to cry once for 6 minutes and I cried for about 3 of those minutes. It was very difficult and in those 6 minutes I realised it is not for me. I’m not against anyone who opts to let their baby CIO. It takes all sorts and everyone needs to do what works for them. But for me I decided when S was quite young that I would WIO and I can happily say at almost 17 months he is finally sleeping through the night. I’m glad I waited it out and I’d like to think he sleeps securely knowing that if he does cry, I’ll be there.

My reasons for WIO are because I believe babies cry for a reason. The reason may be comfort but it is a valid reason and if a child needs comfort and security till they are 16 months then so be it. They could be uncomfortable because they have gas, they could be scared of the dark, feel anxious with some noises they just heard or maybe they just want to me beside their mothers because that is the safest and warmest place in their world. Each child is different and reaches their milestones at different ages. Sleeping through the night is another milestone.

1ec726c0326871900a87542b0a39e6df