I’d always wanted to be a mother. I’d coo at babies when I was a toddler. I’d line my dolls and teddy bears up and play teacher. I knew from a young age I’d have two kids – a girl and a boy.
I fell in love at 30, I got married at 32. My eggs felt good and my husband’s sperm looked good (or as good as it can).
For many couples this is where the hard part starts. But getting pregnant came easily for me. Perhaps too easily.
I was pregnant before we’d been married for six months. We had wanted more time alone together before we became parents, but I’d gone off the pill because I’d heard it could take a year for a woman to get up the duff after being on it for a long time. It took less than a month.
Anyway, that’s life. That’s great. We felt blessed, lucky, thrilled and delighted. Our son was born, big and fat and healthy. I adored him immediately and I felt complete.
I was so obsessed and adoring I forgot to have sex with my husband. Except once or twice. But that’s all it took to get pregnant with baby number two. She was scrawny, underweight and silent at birth. I worshipped her as well. But she didn't want to breast feed, she didn't want to sleep much, she didn't want to cuddle.
Her speciality was screaming. People promised me "tough baby, easy adolescent". She's destined to be a dream teenager because she was a terrible, terrible, terrible baby. Anyway, I loved her too. And we were happy.
So happy we went for a third a few years later. My second little girl was gorgeous, sweet, happy; easier than her sister, but a lot harder than her brother. By then I was 36 and truly devoted to my little tribe.
But after working full time after baby one and part time after baby two, baby three meant childcare cost more than I earned.