The Multi-Disciplinary Meeting

I was 36 when Daisy was born.  I already had seven years of parenting under my belt.

I was acutely aware that in many ways I had so much more in my favour than many other parents embarking on the journey of caring for a complex child.  I was probably closer in age to many of the professionals treating my daughter over the years, I had reached a high level of academic attainment in my own chosen field of expertise, I spoke fluent english and I had the support of one of the best management development coaches in the business, my own husband.  I knew how to negotiate, I knew how to manage complex projects.   

Yet despite all of that, entering a room full of professionals who were all gathered to discuss the fate of my child was one of the toughest things I have had to do.  Nothing in my previous life could prepare me for it.  I felt disempowered and vulnerable.

When Life Gives You Lemons: Debs Aspland

When Life Gives You Lemons is my blog series profiling some of the incredible people I have met during my journey.  People who, like me, have faced adversity but refuse to be defined by it.

Next up is Debs Aspland.

I first met Debs very briefly in 2012 when we both attended the Britmums Brilliance in Blogging Awards.  We bumped into each other again a couple of years later when were invited to meet with and give feedback to the Minister of State for Children and Families.  However it was over drinks on the Southbank that I really got to know Debs and recognise her for the kindred spirit and fellow warrior she is.  She definitely shares my rebellious streak and I couldn't wait to ask her to be the subject of an interview for my When Life Gives You Lemons series.

head shot of Debs Aspland

Mothering Sunday

So here it is, another Mothering Sunday. The second without Daisy.

I was asked this week what I say when I am asked how many children I have?  Always four, I always will have four children, I replied.  She may no longer be here but she will always be with me, every single day.

picture of steph with Daisy when she was about 3, wearing a pink cardigan

Mother's day is hard.  That day when we celebrate motherhood.  We all have mothers, some of us are lucky to be mothers or to have made the choice to have children.

I always wanted children, just not straight away.  I'm so glad Andy and I waited for a few years.  I'm so lucky that I met him when I was young so that we were able to have that time together, to cement our relationship, BC – before children.  It seems like centuries ago, a completely different world away.

When Life Gives You Lemons: Lucy Watts MBE

I'm delighted to launch a new series on my blog today, it's called When Life Gives You Lemons.  Over the years I have had the pleasure to meet and get to know some incredible people, many of whom have faced adversity and have decided not to be defined by this but instead to seize the day and make the most of their situation.  Andy would always say "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!". It as always been the spirit by which I have chosen to live my life so I thought it was about time I shone the spotlight on some other people who are also making lemonade.

Today I would like to introduce Lucy Watts MBE.

 I first met Lucy online about 5 years ago and got to meet her face to face in 2014  I was speaking at an event for the children's Palliative Care Charity, Together for Short Lives and Lucy was there also with her mum Kate in her role as a young ambassador for the charity.  We have stayed in touch ever since and I am so glad that she was also able to meet Andy.

Lucy in Trafalgar Square with her assistance dog Molly