Planned or Surprised … definitely made with love!

If there is one thing that I am with my children, it is honest. I don’t have many (if any) secrets. As my Mum would always say, “my life is an open book”.

Dinner discussions are certainly interesting in our household. There is the normal “what did you do today?” “what did you enjoy?”. There is also the topics of interest ranging from drugs, alcohol, sex, menstruation, pregnancy … you name it, we discuss it. Yes, masturbation has been mentioned at the dinner table. Yes, the children have discussed virginity, the loss of, where, with whom. There is a no holds barred rule. If you think about it, we can discuss it. I prefer it this way. How else will I get to know my children? Really get to know them. Not just surface stuff. I want them to be open, honest and truthful. Dinner is the best place for it. It is the one time that we are all at home together, device-free, safe and at ease.

So it is only normal that discussions lead to how all my pregnancies came about. The kids like to tease each other about who was planned and who wasn’t. Who was born a bastard and who wasn’t (ie, in or out of wedlock). Again I’ve been very upfront about who, when, where and not so much of the how. Let’s be real, who needs those details. No kid wants those details about their Mum and Dad. I know they like to wind each other up, the banter is a lot of fun. So this is for my 4 wonderful children …

Each and every one of you were made out of love. You were wanted, needed and loved right from the very moment I knew you existed.

Shahni, as you know, I got pregnant with you in my second year of university. Surprise! I was living in Hamilton, Dad was living in Gisborne. And as you know (and so will everyone else now, those people that you haven’t told) you were conceived during a camping trip to Lake Waikaremoana. God Bless the outdoors! Dad and I did not sit down and say “hey let’s have a baby”. Still, there you were. I walked in to the on-campus doctor thinking I had food poisoned myself and walked out a mum-to-be. What the actual fuck? I’ll be honest, I cried. I had my bestie Fun Del with me, trying to comfort me best way she knew how. I cried because I was overjoyed, scared, overwhelmed, freaking out, worried but mostly because I knew I had a bubba in my puku. OMG I was going to be a Mum! A series of events followed, another story, another blog. No Shahni, you weren’t planned but oh my gee you were so so so loved and so so so wanted. We needed you in our lives. All of us. Not just Dad and I. Nana Lynn, Aunty Lisa, Nana and Poppa … you were meant to be.

When Shahni turned 1 we decided we’d like to try for another baby. My motto … “when you’re home with 1 you may as well be home with 10”. To our excitement (and some medical intervention due to secondary infertility) we became pregnant again. Shahni was 21 months old. Unfortunately that wee bubba was not meant to be. Not long after losing the baby our relationship ended. I was told without medical intervention I wouldn’t get pregnant again. So the future was uncertain. The one thing I was sure of, I had Shahni.

Noah, you came along at the beginning of our relationship. You were a surprise! Almost a miracle, though I shouldn’t use that term lightly. I wasn’t supposed to get pregnant without medical intervention. I think I can pinpoint your conception. Let’s just say Scotts Ferry, Bulls. (At this point I would like to take the time to apologise to my brother and sister-in-law. Sorry guys!) We had so much to be grateful for. Shahni was so excited to be a big sister. Your dad was excited to finally be having his own little baby. I was going to be a Mum to 2. I loved being a Mum. Aunty Lisa was pregnant with Eilish so like our pregnancies with Shahni and Natalya, we were on a “pregnant journey” together. All the grandparents were excited. There was a lot of joy and happiness surrounding us. Another little bubba that was very much wanted and loved.

I was seeing a specialist regularly since I became pregnant with Noah. Mostly because of the miscarriage but also because my pregnancy with Noah was and little troublesome. So once Noah was born I continued to see the specialist for a few more months. Noah was 5 months old and I was at my regular specialist appointment. My lovely doctor was scanning all my womanly bits and happened to mention that she could see an egg about to be released, so if I was thinking about getting pregnant again I should probably try that day and the next. I certainly didn’t race home and demand to be impregnated but certainly did start that conversation.

India, I know the date you were conceived. April 10 2002. I doubt I need to go into any details here. Let’s just say I took the specialists advice, I advised your dad and there I was, pregnant with baby number 3! So yes, India you were planned. We went out of our way to get pregnant with you. Noah was 5 months old when I got pregnant. Shahni was 3 and a half. I had wanted to be a Mum all my life. I day-dreamed about the children I would have. So I was ecstatic that yet again I was going to have another baby – you! Noah was too young to understand. Shahni was over the moon, though did order a little sister please. There were celebrations all round. A baby tends to do that. Another baby out of wedlock … but whose counting!? Right?

Zeb, it’s true that you were born in wedlock, so no, you are not a bastard! And remember when I’ve joked about being drunk when you were conceived because “I had no clue how that would have happened”? That isn’t true. I can’t pinpoint your conception and I can’t say you were conceived in the forest or in a different city but I can say that you were conceived while we were living at De Lautour Road. You were to be my last baby so I enjoyed every tiny little thing about being pregnant. I knew I was doing it all for the last time. I even found out I was pregnant with you on my birthday so that was a fabulous birthday present. Zeb, you weren’t a planned baby like India. Do not freak out. I was just waiting for you. I didn’t know when but I knew you would happen.

So you all see, you were all lovely little surprises. I wanted and needed all of you. You are all a blessing with sugar on top. Hopefully you all know just how much you are loved, before you read this. I know you will all continue to take the piss out of each other and that is fine. It’s what we do.

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