My name is Cathy and I’m a mum of two from Sydney, Australia. My two little loves are M and H (aged 5 and 2) and we are currently living as Aussie expats in the brash, bold city of Dubai. I’m a mum and wife first and foremost, a business owner, a first generation Aussie of mixed heritage, a lover of animals, a foodie, a classical guitarist, a bit of a crystal loving hippy with some OCD tendencies, and I’m completely passionate about my friends and family.
When the opportunity came up for hubby and I to do a stint in Dubai 9 years ago, it was scary and exciting. I had all these ideas about starting a family and living the SAHM life after spending the previous 10 years working and playing hard in the Sydney advertising scene. There was also an underlying sadness to our move, as we had only been married a short while but had recently lost a baby in early pregnancy.
In many ways I wanted a new beginning and a fresh start.
Fast forward three years and I was pregnant with my first….and along the way I had made some incredible friendships with other expat women who had quickly become my closest friends, and my new “family”. It dawned on me that it truly does take a village, not so much to raise a child, but to support a new mum, whilst she’s floundering through lack of sleep, endless nappies, even more endless feeds, trying to keep everything together whilst feeling frustrated, overwhelmed and often lonely…. did I mention the sleep deprivation?
Having a solid support network of women made a huge difference to me as a tired new mum, especially being far from home. And not only as a new mum, but during the 3 years when my husband and I battled with unexplained infertility after our earlier loss. So after my son was born, I had the added “mum guilt” of feeling I had to be grateful for every second because of the struggle to conceive. How could I complain that I was in complete, toe-curling agony in the early days of breastfeeding? How could I let myself cry during those dark months when my son decided he was going to wake up every 45 mins all night long…yes every 45 minutes.
There were days when I hated it. And days when I’d manage to get some sleep and the clouds would clear. When being a mum was the best feeling ever.
Some of my other friends were dealing with colic, reflux and other medical issues. Some had post natal depression, in fact I’m pretty sure I did too during the period my son didn’t sleep.
But our little village banded together and somehow we managed to navigate our way through.
There’s so much about early motherhood that remains unspoken before you have a baby - even the antenatal classes you attend focus on the birth, but not the aftermath. I thought breastfeeding would be completely easy and natural and was shocked to discover it wasn’t. I thought babies slept. I never imagined that being a full time Mum would be so monotonous at times and that I would often feel like I’d lost my identity. And how much strain all of the above could place on a marriage, even one that was rock solid.
But the women around me, my fellow mums and friends helped get me through in a way that only they could. I realised how much I appreciated my own mum. I understood how she must have struggled when she was a new mum in a new country, with my sister and I born only 13 months apart (kudos to you Mum ♥)
Nowadays when I meet a new mum, I do my best to support her and become part of her village, to let her know it’s OK to stumble and vent frustration. I truly believe there’s so much beautiful, strong and feminine energy created when women support each other.
6 years on and two kids later I’m loving motherhood and also running this business.
I want this blog to bring you valuable information to help navigate the journey into motherhood. We are working on some awesome new blog posts about everything from sleep in the first year, to breastfeeding basics and tips, travelling with your baby, hypnobirthing, the importance of self-care as a new mum and much more. Some amazing women who are experts in these areas are collaborating with us – again another tribe of supportive women at work!
The Nursery Collective is a hub where new and pregnant mums can find all their shopping needs in the one place, so at times I will be featuring some of our lovely brands, as well as the stories about the women and mums behind them.
I look forward to sharing with you on this blog. Don’t forget to sign up to our mailing list so you can be the first to hear about our blog posts, as well as receive any special offers. Feel free to comment below if there is anything in particular you want us to blog about.
And lastly, please share this post with any new mums or mums-to-be in your life and become part of their village.
With love ♥