The #mezayamumproject is a chance to open up conversation
around motherhood and share about our experiences as parents.
Here we talk to Laura from wemadethishome.com
I am Laura, I live near Chester (UK) with my husband Richard and two boys, Arthur (aged two and a half years) and Rupert (three months). I left my job as a graphic designer when Arthur was born to be a stay at home mama, I knew from the start I didn’t want to miss a moment of these early years and feel so blessed that I have the opportunity to be at home with my children whilst they are so little. I write a blog called We Made This Home, it is an online journal about family life, making home and seeking joy amongst the ordinary day to day moments.
Having a baby is at times challenging! What surprised you the most about pregnancy, birth or during the early days?
My journey into motherhood was not one I ever expected. We lost our twins, Henry and Benjamin, who were stillborn at 34 weeks just over three years ago now. It was an unbelievably dark time for us as new parents, we felt lost and empty and the ache to bring home our babies was so incredibly painful. From somewhere deep within we were able to find strength to move through the months that followed, navigating the ebb and flow of grief whilst finding some sort of ‘new normal’.
Several months later we were finally expecting our rainbow baby (a baby born after loss). The pregnancy felt like an eternity and came with so many difficult emotions to deal with. When Arthur arrived into the world, he brought with him light and love that soothed our broken hearts.
The early days with a newborn came with many expected challenges; I’d had a c- section, which was took time to heal and the broken sleep was tiring, I also found myself riding new waves of grief that I hadn’t anticipated and can not find the right words to explain. But with that said I found myself in a complete bubble of newborn bliss, as the weeks moved forward our love as a little family unit deepened and with it came a new strength to live with the grief along side us.
There's a saying it takes a village to raise a child. Do you have or have you found it important to have a tribe or support network of help, family or friends around you? Or perhaps help from your own mother, sisters? Do you find this valuable or do you prefer to go it alone?
One of the things I value the most as a mother is the supportive network of friends and family I have around me. When Arthur was tiny I went along to our local breastfeeding group where I met a lovely group of friends who had babies around the same time. It was a great place to go and socialise, to share mama tales and get advice, not just on breastfeeding but on any aspect of motherhood. Two and a half years on we are all still good friends.
I have also found such a great tribe of friends on Instagram, it is my favourite social media platform and has been a constant source of inspiration as well as a great place to ‘meet’ likeminded people who share similar interests and passions.
How do you feel becoming a mothers has changed your outlook/perspective on life?
I cannot help but feel blessed for what I have. Becoming a mother to twins who didn’t get to take a breath or experience the wonders of life has made me more determined to make the most of my own.
For me, motherhood is one of the greatest privileges in life - to birth our children, to love them unconditionally and to help them to grow is just amazing. Seeing the world through their eyes has given me a new perspective on life, they are always fully absorbed in the present moment, it’s a big reminder to ground myself in the present too, to take in all the little moments, to get down on the floor with them and drink in their wonderment as they explore their world.
What piece of advice do you want your babies to learn from you and always remember?
Do your best with a gracious and loving heart.
..and what piece of advise do you still hold dear from your own Mother / Father / Caregiver?
Always do the best you can.
What do you love the most about this chapter of your life, these adventures of motherhood?
I feel incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to be at home with my little ones, seeing them grow daily is such a joy. This season of motherhood feels so natural to me.
I heard somewhere that ambition was once identified as part of a woman's maternal instinct. How do you feel your ambition for pursuing your dreams has changed since entering motherhood? Do you feel you have become more creative, less creative, longing to fulfil a different side of you but have a lack of time for yourself, or perhaps motherhood has made you feel beautifully content and complete? Talk to us about this..
Quite soon after leaving my job as a graphic designer to stay at home with our children I realised I missed the creativity that came with my career. Photography and blogging has been the outlet I needed to nourish my creative spirit. Since becoming a mother my blog had been nominated for multiple awards and my photography featured in a couple of magazines, which is an absolute dream come true and has encouraged me to keep nurturing my passions for creativity.
Mothers and caregivers raise the next generation, what values or mindset are you passionate to ensure you instil in your child/ children?
I read a quote once that has stuck with me and I think is a great set of values to live by:
“Be kind. Work hard. Stay humble. Smile often. Stay loyal. Keep honest. Travel when possible. Never stop learning. Be thankful always and love”.
Mothers are constantly caring for others and often balancing their world on their shoulders! How do you carve out time for yourself and your spouse, not forgetting other family members and friends?
In order to be fully present in my roll as a mother and a wife, I have found that it is really important to try and carve out a little bit of time for myself to do things I really enjoy. When my eldest son was born I made the decision to leave my career as a graphic designer to stay at home, I knew I didn’t want to miss a minute of these early years, but I really missed the creativity that came with my job, so when Arthur has his nap I indulge in an hour or so of time to create and make. Now that Arthur is older I try to find play ideas that satisfies my creative need as much as it does his, things that keep us both content, like gardening, various crafts, going on adventures and picnics. I often take my camera along and use some of that time to practice my photography skills and capture happy moments. After all a happy mama makes for a happy baby, right.
The shift from maiden to mother is a sudden and mega one - the birth (or adoption) of your child changes life forever. Suddenly your shift moves from yourself to your new baby. How was this adjustment for you?
Becoming a mother is life changing and is ultimately the biggest gift. I found I adapted to it fairly well when Arthur was born. But having two little ones now has been a little more challenging. The thing I have found most difficult is prioritising the needs of both my children if they both need my attention at the same time. (I think I would mention here that our Mezaya Baby Sling has proved to be invaluable in helping me out during those challenging moments, Rupert is so content being held closely whilst I have my hands free to tend Arthur’s needs). Day by day I am feeling it is getting much easier to prioritise, and I have come to realise that encouraging patience in children is really important. I just hope I am teaching them in away that makes them both feel listened too and understood.
Never underestimate the power of a woman is a favourite mezayamum quote. Do you feel having a baby has made you feel stronger and more confident then pre baby or do you find it's brought to the surface your vulnerability and emotions?
This is a fabulous quote. Yes I do think that becoming a mother has made me a stronger person, it’s not always made me feel confident but I definitely feel I can achieve anything I put my mind to.
Laura wears the Mezaya Oatmeal Linen sling. You can follow Laura on Instagram @we.made.this.home and read her blog at wemadethishome.com