parent opinion

TEGAN NATOLI: 'After having three babies, I've decided there are two types of mums.'

Six weeks into my IVF pregnancy, I went to my first scan just hoping to hear a healthy heartbeat for the very first time. I heard it… plus another.

Yep, I heard THEM. Identical twins!

After the shock, joy, terror and overwhelming disbelief wore off, one of the first things I did was call a friend of mine who had two-year-old identical twin boys, to basically ask her everything she could tell me about carrying, birthing and raising twins.

And, funnily enough, the only thing I remember about that conversation is her saying, “You just do what’s right for you… don’t read too much or dig too deep for advice or you’ll get overwhelmed with all the conflicting information.

“Just find some other mums that you feel you resonate with and bounce any questions you have off them.”

So call me crazy, but off I launched into twin mama-hood with no idea what I was doing and a ‘she’ll-be-right’ attitude!

And she was. I was completely fine.

Then, when the twins were three months old, my partner and I got the second biggest shock of our lives: we found out we had fallen pregnant naturally.

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So, four days after the twins’ first birthday, I gave birth to my son. And I’ve basically been winging three kids under two ever since.

But then I’ve always been a bit of an improviser. Running businesses from the age of 19, my mum used to get frustrated with me roping her into helping with events because I wouldn’t really organise anything until the last minute. But I’d always manage to calmly pull it all together, and that’s pretty much how I’ve “mummed” so far.

I’m the mum in the park with three kids and no baby bag. Don’t get me wrong, I own about four of them, but I figure if I’m just popping out for a while we should be fine. And if we’re not, I’m sure someone else will have a baby wipe I can use. Or worst-case scenario, I could always swing past a shop and grab what I need.

I’m the first to admit that this approach sometimes makes life harder for myself – puts me in a pickle, if you will.

So, thank god for the organised mums. They think ahead, they’re prepared for all kinds of situations and if it weren’t for them… I’d probably be screwed.

I’ve come to believe that there are two types of mums: the Improvisers and the Planners.

While chatting about mum stuff with my This Glorious Mess Little Kids podcast co-host, Leigh Campbell, it was clear as day that she is the epitome of a Planner.

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TGM Little Kids is here! We chat to a midwife about all the burning questions any new mum has wanted to ask, plus the girls share their birth stories. Post continues below!

Leigh is a knowledgeable, well-informed mum that does her research and likes to know her options in preparation for what’s ahead. She told me that her son Alexander was about to hit the four-month sleep regression.

I didn’t know what the four-month sleep regression was until I was on the verge of asking for a refund because I thought my 12-week old twins were broken.

While pregnant, Planners conduct surveys and focus groups to plan for bub’s arrival. They know all the products they will need, compare brands, safety ratings, prices, and practicality.

 

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Alternatively, Improvisers ask a friend what they used and get that (hopefully on sale). Or they see something on Instagram that looks cute and buy it through the “shop now” link.

Us Improvisers aren’t always hopeless though!

I like to think we bring a positive, laidback attitude that contrasts to the Planners’ sometimes neurotic approach. Swamped in their boundless research and overwhelming options, Planners seem to like us Improvisers for our ‘that’ll do’ attitude and quick decision-making (but we know they’ll always get a second opinion just to be sure).

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And, while we might sometimes dabble across the pond, at the end of the day we’re all just going about parenting in our own way.

The truth is every mum wants a little reassurance that they’re doing a good job and on the right track. Whether you’ve done the research or not, it’s ok to ask questions, seek explanations and learn along the way. The great thing about This Glorious Mess Little Kids is that we’re bringing in the people that have the knowledge, experience and expertise to give insight into what mums and parents want to know.

It’s a safe, judgement-free zone where Improvisers, Planners and all the other types of parents come together to celebrate the little wins, learn from the stuff-ups and giggle at all the WTF moments.

Listen to This Glorious Mess Little Kids here!

Which type of mum are you? Let us know in the comments below.

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