Why is there such a negative stigma around being a young mum?! Or a belief that young mums have ‘ruined the life that they had ahead of them’?! Quite the opposite, in fact. I can remember the way that my mum’s voice jolted as she told me the test result, and how my heart sank as she said the word ‘pregnant’. I never planned to have children this early on in my life, so you could say that I thought the exact same (to an extent) – what about all of the plans I’ve made?! Maybe spending my gap year as an au-pair in Australia, and then becoming a real-life Mary Poppins at Norland College, didn’t go to plan. But, I am now a full-time mummy (rather than a full-time nanny) and I wouldn’t change a thing.
My postpartum life has consisted of constant reminders that I’m at one of the best ages to have a baby. Yes, I am somewhat restricted to what I can do right now; but I am also grateful that the school run will stop before I reach my 30’s. Result! For those who are interested in what I’m planning to do from now, here it is in one big ramble.
Due to being the eldest of 5, I have always been interested in working with children; hence the Norland dream. I originally applied to be a paediatric nurse in 2016, but I got turned away from my first choice uni; which has now strengthened my belief that everything happens for a reason. I now feel like I was meant to have a gap year (although maternity leave wasn’t on the agenda). I’m not sure if I was just bitter, but I completely lost interest in children’s nursing after this and decided that primary teaching was much better suited to me.
At the start of this year, I watched a documentary called ‘Britain’s Poshest Nannies’ where I discovered Norland, and completely fell in love. The degree is Early Years Development and Learning, which is the exact degree I had planned to do (followed by a PGCE) for primary teaching. The main difference at this university is that a diploma is integrated into the course; which allows you to qualify as a professional nanny. So, I wanted the best of both worlds; and an option to decide which career path I wanted to follow. A lot of commitment is required for Norland, and unfortunately a neat bun and perfectly ironed attire is no longer achievable. However, I have now accepted that I’ll (hopefully) still graduate with the same degree, just at a different uni; so I’m not fussed about that. I also may not be soaking up the sun in Australia, but I’ve definitely experienced full-time childcare.
I’ve worked out that by the time Amelie starts school (scary thought), I would have completed my teacher training. Good timing, I say. To wrap it up – my plan is to start university in 2018, graduate with an Early Childhood degree, complete a PGCE, and then kickstart my career as a primary teacher. A lot of hard work and commitment, but very much achievable. Amelie completely consumes my life but it has been the best ‘gap year’ I could have hoped for! I have not once turned away from my career path. If anything, having a baby has motivated me to work harder to get where I want to be. Babies are totally life-changing, but all for the better!