Never, in a million years before I became a mother would I willing travel down to London on my own and meet a group of people I have never met off the internet. (Maybe a safety advert in that there?!) I would have always bottled it, and made an excuse not to go but I did have a little experience from meeting the lovely Nina and Ally @lifewithmylittleduck last month. I will say I did have a slight wobble the night before and messaged Ally in a panic as I was slightly worried that these genuinely talented ladies would think I am a weird Norfolk emo whose claim to fame is her child’s heart surgery. What if they were expecting Mother Theresa and I come in with quite a partial liking to gin and swearing like a sailor. But I could totally do this right?! So that’s what I did. I just hoped I wouldn’t be kidnapped, locked in a room never to be seen again by a man in a trench coat with a beard. (This did not happen but there were some pleas from Donna to COME BACK after we went to the bathroom!) My butt was seated on the 10am train from Norwich to Liverpool Street hoping I had gotten on the right train! No backing out now!
Ally dutifully met me at the gate ready to escort me like my mum, as like a child I do not understand the tube. Actually, I am sure a child has more common sense than I do. We then met @mummybakesdairyfree and @rachelkellett whilst rescuing the lovely Jenny and made our way there! Until we realised between 5 of us we didn’t actually know where we were going. But, safety in numbers right? Then a problem became quite apparent we did not know who the hell each other were when we used our first names, only Insta handles! As we all cautiously went up the stairs, the nerves were slightly setting in and at this point only one gin had been consumed! However, after meeting Donna I felt instantly at ease, as even she was nervous! We soon learnt we all felt the same. So, after a few more drinks and might I add a lot of boob staring at name and insta handles tags, lots of gasps of ‘Oh yes, of course it’s you!’ the nerves slowly ebbed away. It was slightly like being back at school and hoping everyone liked you! I can also confirm there were no men in trench coats with beards and everyone actually seemed to be who they appeared to be on their feeds! No Malcolm’s in sight!
I have however now come back with a huge girl crush on @grace_timothy, where forget the #mumface, I want her face that’s not weird right?! I am so insanely jealous of the beautiful Priya @pabarilife who is one of the nicest people I have ever met, and the @uhohmum you had won the title of best plaits that day, I will admit defeat! I now have a little band of NICU MUM bracelet wearers, @lifewithmylittleduck, @pabarilife. And the one and only Polly Pocket herself Jenny @mamazou. Get yours by clicking here and remember 10% ofeach one goes to Bliss.
Donna was even kind enough to not only take a group photo but to get everyone involved to do a huge #bigkidsforgosh photo, this was her event and she really didn’t have to do this but it really helped get the message out there, and for that I am super grateful. @pandaandping also did an epic wheel barrow! It actually makes me feel like I am making a difference and going in the right direction (she says hoping). We have also raised over £282, with 2 weeks to go!
Nick Fury, I mean Donna even had two missions for us, see she is the leader of the Mama Avengers! One was to make us think of our #mamahood power, mine of course was my epic mum voice that can stop and silence both boys (yes even Papa NICU) in their tracks. The other was the @superchargedclub’s #badassmamas campaign. I wouldn’t have dreamed of having my photo taken before all of this, never mind speaking on camera about what I have conquered as a mother. I was a bit nervous as I wanted to talk about PTSD and really get it out there so with a few gins and the lovely Mary’s support I did this. Yes, its sounds ridiculous and I probably sounded a complete twonk but I am proud of myself it is something I would never have done before Elijah. It really shows how far you can go with someone saying actually, yes, you can do it.