“I found that when I became a mum at 16 years old the people
around me would pity me and there weren’t many
congratulations because in their view that was it for me; I was
now a mum and my sole focus was raising my child, not being
a young woman. Little did they know that becoming a mum
empowered me to want more from my life.” Nicola
Whether you’re a single mum or not, the same insecurities can
creep in slowly like a poison when you find yourself with a
new identity as a parent. You can start to question if there is a
point. I’m here to tell you that there isn’t a point, there’s a
All our purposes are unique to our personalities, experiences,
values and lives. My purpose during my low times was
always my children. I wanted them to look up to me as a
loving mother who would move the earth for them and stop
at nothing to create a path for them to flourish on.
This hasn’t always come easy. I don’t think it ever will either.
During pregnancy and early motherhood, my own thoughts,
views and opinions didn’t really exist. But I was always on
time for school pick-up, packed lunches were always done
and my effort in work would never go unnoticed. However,
all of the things in life that I prioritised didn’t include any of
my own needs, and I didn’t even realise that I was slowly
letting myself disappear. What was my purpose?
I was being praised for my excellent time-keeping,
organisational skills, the children’s behaviour, attendance in
school and how I made motherhood look so natural. I didn’t
see notice the barriers I was creating for myself. When you’re
experiencing the same routine day in day out, it’s hard to
think about yourself. Your children are happy and everyone
around you is happy; you assume that you have to accept the
life you have. Why wouldn’t you want to? It was perfect to
everyone looking in. You'll seem ungrateful if you complain,
If you feel that speaking out about your feelings is
complaining, then that’s your first barrier. Never feel like you
can’t raise a voice for your own needs.
Personally, I think that society has created these images of the
perfect woman that are now expected to come with
motherhood. It’s as though our purpose has become to
compete with each other.
One image you’ve got is the mother who's not afraid to show
her real feelings and emotions during pregnancy and
throughout parenting. She’s strong, powerful and embraces
motherhood. She's very strong and stands up for her own
rights as a mother and she's not afraid of who hears or
Another image you’ve got is a mother who also embraces
motherhood but in her own style, choosing to keep this to
herself. You don't hear her complain about motherhood or life
in general, she gets on with her daily to do list and would
rather not get involved in any discussions that might cause
Within the two you can get a mother who cooks fresh meals
every night and another who admits that she relies on oven
food due to time restraints and fussy children. Then you
might have a mother who never allows TV, compared to one
who relies on it so that the children are occupied while she
gets things done.
It sounds like they could clash. But then I realised that is only
because society made me think they would, through social
media articles and magazines setting these different types of
mothers up against each other.
Both of these images of motherhood should be seen as role
models. They have the same goal and purpose - to love,
empower and inspire their children.
Having another mother as a role model can inspire and raise
you up on even the lowest of days. There are so many women
I look up to, both in my family and in my community. These
women are strong, powerful and very honest. I admire their
willingness to show the world the real images of motherhood,
helping to reduce the expectations that new mothers are being
Thank you for reading.