Amanda's motherhood story - Raising daughters without my mum
When I was 8 years old, my mother passed away from lung cancer. I was a Mummy's girl who did everything with her - she was my rock and my best friend, then one day she was gone. I struggled through life after that. I suffered on and off through depression, anxiety, I became a compulsive liar, I never felt good enough for anyone. I pushed people away, I fought with family and friends, I believed the world owed me something. Then my partner came along.
Coincidentally he'd lost his Mum at the age of 8 also and while he hadn't experienced all of the things I had been through, he could relate. He helped me see things through a different perspective, he helped me through it all. We decided to start a family together.
Firstly, along came Madison Lily, named after my partner's Mum. Wow did that everything change. This little bundle of joy bought so much happiness into our lives. I know it's a cliché, but for someone who had experienced so much pain and heartache, I felt like a had a purpose again. I had found my place in the world. All the fears that my partner and family had of me relapsing into depression, floated away and they realised that being a mother was what I was meant for. I stayed home, I nurtured her, I was there when she sat up, started to crawl, took her first steps, my heart melted when she told me she loved me for the first time.
We hadn't planned on having another so soon, but we changed our minds and Milla Patricia, named after my Mum, entered this world. After she was born I struggled a little. I worried that I had made the wrong decision, I worried that I had ruined Madison's life, I worried that I couldn't be a good enough mother to Milla. Madison, as every child does when a new sibling comes into their life, was acting out and demanding attention. Although she was an amazing big sister, her affection was a little too forceful at times. She would try and jump into the bassinet, hugs consisted of headlocks and whenever Milla has having tummy time, Madison would try whacking her on the back to 'burp her'. I would ring my partner at work and tell him I couldn't do it anymore, that he needed to come home, that I needed help. I was starting to get post-natal depression. But then, as quickly as I got sick, everything fell into place and all my fears disappeared. Milla was about 4 weeks old, we were just about to embark on our first overseas adventure together as a family as my brother was getting married in Fiji. I felt like I was finally back to my old self again.
Things have become fun, crazy, hectic and wonderful from then on out. As Milla got older and started to move around and was interacting with us more, Madi and her became closer and closer. We survived our days by settling into a routine and sticking to it. The girls drive me mental at times, they can fight a lot, they hurt each other, but they're also the first to comfort each other if one of them is to get hurt. They're affectionate, sometimes clingy, but amazingly cheeky, they have a great sense of humour, always making people laugh and you can't help but smile at their happiness. We go out and they're very well behaved, but at home it's a different story. So I tend to leave the house every day in the mornings to break things up, to show them new surroundings and socialise them.
We have a lot of fun together, playing with toys, making up new games and going on a lot of walks. They love having their picture taken and they've both discovered a passion for fashion which I definitely did not inherit. They have in fact inherited my laziness though and love to sometimes just curl up on the couch and watch their favourite T.V shows or movies.
All in all, being a mother has been the best thing that's ever happened to me. I've discovered something that although drives me insane sometimes, also keeps me grounded. In focusing on my children, I don't have time to worry about the little things that once upon a time used to consume me.
A treasured family photo with her mum.
Amanda says: I am so indecisive, I can never make up my mind. I worry too much about what people think of me, but somehow I'm still pretty laid back. I play a lot of netball and I can always be found at a local footy/cricket club. When I'm not posting pictures of the girls on Instagram, I will be messing up our lounge room and arm deep in black ink printing customised faces onto t-shirts, weird I know, but check it out on @mooandvanilla.
Hood: Maroondah Area
Children: Madison 3 yrs old & Milla 2 yrs old
Motherhood in 5 words: Crazy, wonderful, stubborn, fulfilling and hilarious.
Fav cafe: Rise & Grind cafe in Vermont.
Coffee order: Large cappuccino, one sugar.
Biz: Moo and Vanilla
Faces on tees with handmade stencils & screen printing. Made in Melbourne.
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