I consider myself extremely fortunate to have two healthy, happy children and I never want to take them or the life we live for granted. Of course at 3am when I am yet to crawl into my own bed after pinging back and forth between breastfeeding the littlest and comforting her older yet still little brother after a nightmare about having actual cold feet, you can imagine my mind wonders. I occasionally muse that I am very hard done by, life is so unfair and I have a little woe is me moment.
Well this week I am very excited and proud to have my first guest writer on the blog to share with us her own, slightly different ‘baby due’ announcent story. A story that has made me feel even more like I should never take what I have for granted, even if it turns 4am and I’m still not in bed.
My guest writer wishes to remain anonymous as she is in the middle of the process she is describing, but I think you will all agree with me when I say this woman and her partner are going to be exceptional parents and make those, as of yet, unknown children very happy indeed.
I read a lot of blogs like this so when I was asked to do a guest blog I thought that sounded like a fun idea. Let me explain a little more. I read a lot of mumsie blogs because I’m expecting. It’s very exciting and I love reading about crafts I can hopefully make in the future with the kids, getting ideas on places to maybe take them one day, and even reading about the sleepless nights I no doubt have ahead of me.
This week we have been getting the house ready. I’m a bargain hunter so I’ve been browsing Gumtree every night on the lookout for an incredible all singing all dancing all terrain all foldable pushchair. No luck so far! I have however managed a few bargains, including an £8 stairgate, a fire blanket, a first aid kit and some super smart magnetic kitchen drawer locks! Bit strange right, I mean what kind of newborn can get up to the level of mischief required for a stairgate and first aid kit combination!? Well here’s the catch. I’m expecting, but I’m not sure when I’m due. I’m expecting, but I’m not sure how big they will be. I’m expecting, but I’m not sure how many I will have! You got it, myself and my wonderful partner are in the process of adopting.
So, we may have kids in the next few months, but it may also be that we dont have kids for a good few years. We can’t even think child or approval panel till the house is safe beyond all imaginable levels of safe. My plug sockets are already all covered, the carbon monoxide monitor will arrive next week, an extra baby gate will be ready to collect on Sunday, and the second lot of kitchen cupboard safety latches should be delivered by Amazon any day now. Then will come the fun task of installing them. The first lot did not pass the test of ‘I want kids and a pretty house’ which is the warped reality of the life I still live and believe can continue post children too.
I thought I would take a little bit of your reading time to explain a bit about the process myself and my partner are going through. The final aim is of course for us to become parents, just like probably a lot of people reading this may already be, but our journey to getting there, I imagine, may be very different.
So far to get through to the final stage of the process which is where we currently are we have had to do a fair few things. The biggest struggle to date has been engaging our long term memories. Ever tried to list every address, school and job you’ve had from birth? It isn’t as easy as you would imagine! We have had booklets upon booklets of questions probing into our past, looking at the childhoods we both had and being encouraged to discuss and reflect on the positives and negatives of our lives so far. We have had to attend compulsory preparation groups too. These where really interesting but of course also included the obligatory awkward group ice breakers. We have had to walk our two dogs for hours on end pre social worker visits to try and ensure they are on their best behaviour even though we have no doubt of their ability to be brilliant fur-siblings to our future kids.
Myself in particular, I have worked with vulnerable adults and children my entire working life, so that’s ten year of references to chase from each employer. We have had to have work done on our house to make sure it is child safe so that has involved big delays in our progression just waiting for letting agents and builders and landladies to all agree! We have had to start decorating the house, making it look like a child could live here, but without any knowledge of the age or gender of said children.
So far the process has been interesting, engaging and trying. We feel like we are being inspected, tested and checked out to ensure that we have the ability to be a parent. We often compare ourselves and our journey to our friends who have had children biologically and wonder how they got away with no one questioning the gap size of their bannister! We wonder if any expectant parents have read 8 books of the emotional wellbeing of their future children or if they spend their evenings post work watching irritating presenters from the 90’s on youtube discuss all sorts of parenting techniques. We wouldn’t change it though. The excitement in our house grows with each stage we progress through, I imagine like getting a scan picture or reaching the next trimester. We get the fun of buying the odd toy that we think every child would like, like my most recent fireman Sam Gumtree bargain. We spend every evening talking about our future family. Once we get our children home I will try and update you on how it all went. I mean obviously I will have time for this between the arts, crafts, football, rugby, swimming, library, parks and dog walks we already have planned!
Do you have a different perspective on having children? I would love to hear about it.