Wait so you didn’t already know that I have a daughter?
Where have you been! Haha!
I’m just playing… not about the daughter part though! Haha! Yes, I have a daughter, she’s a teenager, and she’s taller than me. Not that it’s that difficult for anybody to be taller than my 5 foot 2 ass!
Anywho! This was my intro blog post sharing my daughter and journey into motherhood with you guys. I’m reposting this blog for your reading and viewing pleasure, and hope that if any of you are mothers, we can support each other through the weird and wonderful life of being a mum in the 21st century! Lord knows it ain’t easy…
Those of you who follow me on Instagram will already know that I often like to take stylish pics with my daughter, so I thought I’d share some of my favourite images of us together in this updated version of this post.
This Sunday March 6th is Mother’s Day in the UK. In light of this, I thought I’d share my journey into motherhood with you and give a brief background into the circumstances that lead me to becoming a teenage mum, and how I’m dealing with being a single mum today.
It’s always a huge shock when I tell people that I have a 12-year-old daughter. Mainly because many people think I look about 12 years old myself! Lol… Okay so maybe 12 is a bit of an exaggeration… I basically don’t look old enough to have a 12-year-old. In fact, some of you may be reading this and saying to yourself, “oh wow! I didn’t even know she had a child!”
Yep! I’m a mum!
“My baby girl…”
It’s pretty obvious that the circumstances which lead me to becoming a teenage mum was the fact that I had unprotected sex at the age of 17, got pregnant, and had turned 18 by the time I gave birth to my daughter. However, I truly believe that becoming a teenage mum wasn’t just down to having unprotected sex, I think that my lack of guidance when it came to sex and boys at that age may also have played some part in bigger scheme of things.
You see, coming from a Nigerian household and having the type of relationship with my own Mother where we just didn’t express our feelings or communicate on a deep emotional level with each other, conversations about boyfriends and sex was practically an abomination… Okay I may be exaggerating again, but it was definitely a no-go area!
You were expected to stay away from boys until you graduate from University, and the day after you graduate you should suddenly have a long term boyfriend or be engaged and be getting married the following day, and then the grandchildren should be on their way within 1 year! (I know those of you with Nigerian parents know what I’m talking about, lol)
As fairly strict as my mum was growing up, she was also quite liberal and carefree. When I first invited my daughter’s dad (aka my baby-father), who was my first boyfriend, to the house after being with him for a year without my mum knowing, she was pretty calm about the fact that I had a boyfriend and surprisingly took a liking to him. She seemed pleased about the fact that he was a good-looking guy, although she wasn’t 100% keen on the fact that he was a Jamo… meaning, a Jamaican… (that’s another topic for another day… lol).
I had a sense of relief after the initial introductions had taken place. No more having to tell lies upon lies to my mum about my whereabouts when in actual fact I’d be chilling at my boyfriend’s house or on a date somewhere with him. What was even more surprising was that my mum would let him sleep over at our house and I’d do the same at his house. Till this day I sometimes I wonder how my mum could’ve been as shocked as she was when I eventually told her I was pregnant!
I remember one particular Saturday morning I was in the kitchen loading up the washing machine as part of my usual weekend chores and my mum walked into the kitchen, looked at me, paused for about five seconds, and simply said, “you better not be having any sex!” To which I spontaneously replied, “No?!” The truth was I’d lost my virginity and been doing several positions for the past year without her knowing… and that was it. That was our ‘birds and the bees’ conversation. That was the only time we ever spoke about sex and boys. Six words from her, and one word from me. That was it! 4 months later I was standing in her bedroom with my boyfriend and his mum struggling to find the words to tell her that I was pregnant!
I’ll never forget that day. For weeks, I had been avoiding it. If not for my boyfriend’s mum deciding that I had to tell her that day and literally forced herself and her son into her car and drove to my house to tell my mum what she’d known for weeks, I probably would have carried on avoiding telling my mum until there was no way of hiding my huge pregnant belly any longer. Did I mention that my mum was a Nigerian woman? You just don’t do them things when your parents are Nigerian. Coming home pregnant at the age of 17 was not going to make me a Lawyer or an Engineer!
It’s safe to say that my mum was not happy and incredibly disappointed in me. That night I packed my clothes and college books and went back home with my boyfriend and his mum, because there was no way I was going to let them leave me behind for my mum to kill me that night and hide my body in the loft! I spent the majority of my pregnancy living at my boyfriend’s house with his family while my mum went through the 5 stages of grief before coming to the conclusion that, it is what it is! She was going to be a grandmother at the tender age of 42 and all she could do was accept it. She totally ‘grandma spoils’ my daughter and loves her immensely.
Both our coats were just £1 each from the East End Thrift Store!
I eventually moved back home for the last month of my pregnancy and it was my mum who drove me to the hospital when I went into labor and was there with me as I gave birth to my daughter, along with my boyfriend and his mum.
Child birth is the most amazing experience. It hurts like nothing you can imagine but it’s amazing. There I was in the hospital with a baby in my arms. I don’t think it hit me that I was a mum until I brought her home and tried to breast feed her for the first time without the help of the midwife at the hospital. But I did it. I remember looking down at her as she was sucking my nipples off and thinking, oh my gosh! I’m actually a mum! This is my baby!
I was only 18. Practically still a baby myself. However, I was determined to finish college, so after my daughter turned 3 months old I went back. I’d put her in her buggy, get on the bus to college, drop her off at the college crèche and go upstairs to my classes. Looking back now, I really don’t know how I managed, but I’m convinced that it was God’s grace that kept me, and continues to keep me.
A few years went by and after many ups and down, and living together for some time, my relationship with my daughter’s dad ended and my life as a single mum began. My daughter was about 2 or 3 years old. Although her dad remained in her life and did the best he could to be there for her, it didn’t compare to having to bring up a child on your own 24/7. No matter how much time she spent with her dad over the years, it’s just not the same as having your child living with you and being in your care 365 days a year and having to be there for every experience that child has, and provide for that child in every way, including keeping a roof over their head, and food in their belly, and clothes on their back.
I’m grateful that as my daughter has gotten older, her relationship with her dad has gotten stronger and he’s there for her not just financially but also emotionally, and I applaud him for that. He’s tried. With both of us coming from single parent families where we both had almost non-existent relationships with our own dads, I think we both wanted better for our daughter, whether we were a together or not. I cannot stand when baby-mothers intentionally stop the father of their children from having contact because of their own bitterness and spitefulness… (again, that’s a whole other topic for another day, lol).
Where do we sign up for a mother-daughter modelling agency pls? lol
Myself and my daughter have been through a lot of difficult times, we sometimes still struggle, but I’m so thankful for every experience that has brought us closer together and made our mother-daughter bond stronger than ever. She’s more than just my daughter. She knows me so well. We finish each other’s sentences. She can even tell what I’m thinking without me saying anything! She’s my motivation to keep on striving and going after my dreams so that she won’t have to struggle as much as I have in pursuing her own dreams.
Yes, I would’ve preferred to have waited and been married before bringing a child into the world, but this is the life I’ve been dealt to live, and I wouldn’t change it. Yes, things could’ve been different if I had more guidance and just someone to talk to about sex and boys in order to make better decisions, but my mum could only do the best she could as a single parent herself. Her concerns were more focused on making sure the bills were paid and that we had food to eat. She herself needed someone she could talk to, and she found it difficult it to express her feelings or show signs of vulnerability because her whole thing was that she just had to keep it moving and be strong… sounds a lot like me…
A mother’s love is a powerful force.
I truly commend all mothers everywhere. Whether you’re doing it alone or happily married. I commend you all. Great mothers. Doing the best you can for your children. I commend you. Many blessings to you and yours.
Here’s a short video of our silly bloopers while taking outfit pics.
Sidenote: I had to remove the original song playing in the video background because YouTube said it was copyrighted… *eyes rolling emoji* Haha! Enjoy!