The ties that bind…

I have a very close relationship with my parents and my brother and I am very lucky to be able to tell them anything and I have always had their support and backing.  I know not everyone is so lucky and some people even barely talk to their family let alone confide in them. I have a close connection with them and speak to them often, as they don’t live nearby.

Funny thing is despite coming from a close family I wasn’t interested in having a family of my own when I was younger, I just wanted to meet lots of new people and travel the world. I had only got as far as Cyprus when I met the love of life Paul who is now my husband. We met each other when we were 21;we loved to party and children were certainly not on the agenda. I had even told Paul that I wasn’t sure if I would ever want children, but he loved me and stayed with me regardless. I guess he must have known that my maternal instinct would kick in one day, and kick in it did – the timing couldn’t have been more off. I had just started University when Paul’s baby sister announced she was pregnant. I was so excited for her and as I watched her bump grow I became very broody. When I first cuddled Lily I knew that I desperately wanted to become a Mummy, but I remained focused and saw out my three years at University. Over the three years Paul caught up with me and was also very keen on becoming a Daddy. In that time to make matters worse my brother and his wife had a baby girl called Lucy. We were both besotted with our nieces Lily and Lucy and idolised them. The plan was for me to get some teaching experience under my belt for a couple years before we would start our own family, but things in life never quite go to plan!

I went to my Graduation Ceremony with ‘Peanut’ only 10 weeks old in my tummy. Only close friends and family knew but I wanted the world to know and I am sure they did the way  I was constantly stroking my then flat tummy. I loved being pregnant and idea of having something that Paul and I had made growing inside of me was amazing. At 21 weeks I finally started to show and was pleased that I could show off my bump to the world I never once felt fat; I just felt proud. Both Paul and I loved feeling Peanut kicking and moving around inside me. He would speak to Peanut and Peanut would respond with an excited kick! From 11 weeks we took pictures of my bump and measured it’s size, all the photos, along with a photos of the preganancy test sticks went into an photo book titled ‘Peanut- The Story of My Birth.’ Friends and family couldn’t believe just how excited we were on becoming parents. My Face Book statuses would always be about what Peanut and I were up to. Towards the end of the pregnancy I even started a blog with a first hand account from Peanut! http://allaboutpeanut.blogspot.com

When the umbilical cord was cut the tie between the two of us wasn’t. The first cuddle was so very, very special as every parent knows. It truly was the happiest day of our lives. Another moment I will treasure forever is the first time she took milk from me. It was amazing, at less than an hour old she knew just what to do, it was so natural. I feel that breastfeeding brought us closer together, she would always fall asleep afterwards, so I always got some bonus cuddles! I remember when she was tiny the way she would look up into eyes just before she fell asleep just to check I was still there and she still gives me the same loving look now.

We must have taken millions of photos of Isabella and she even has a photo book called ‘365 Days of Isabella’, where it is just that, a photo of her from every day of her first year! From her first smile, laugh to the first time she rolled over we have just been so proud and full of love for our baby girl. We have made photobooks that show what we did together as a family. It was supposed to be a one a year, but we have had  so much to say and so many memories we want to treasure we have split them into six month blocks.

Isabella is our world, everything we do is about putting her needs first; If Isabella is not happy we are not happy. Everyday she brings us happiness and a warm and fuzzy feeling like no other. Despite everything she always has a smile on her face and a sparkle in her eyes. I hope that in years to come and whatever the future holds Isabella will still be able find comfort and support in the arms of her Mummy and Daddy, the same way I still do today …..

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