When you find out you have a daughter, there’s a thought that comes to you somewhere between ‘Cute shoes!’ and ‘She’s going to learn self-defence’ which is that this small person has two decades of minefields to cross to become the resilient, happy woman you want her to be.
When it’s freezing out side, or raining, or dark at 4pm, I often find myself with a genuine dislike for the outdoors and two hyperactive children. This is when I call in the power of a rebrand. It works on adults all the time – show them a sunny Peckham carpark and tell them it’s a ‘beer garden’, it will be full of happy hipsters before you can say ‘artisanal cider’ – I use the same techinique on my kids.
A few months ago we welcomed a new little guy into the Ladyland family, Bella’s baby Dylan. Obviously we held a baby shower (any excuse for a party). And managed to get through about eight tonnes of cake and a whole lot of prosecco.
Any new parent will tell you that bathtime is sacred. You stare in wonderment at the tiny naked being you’ve created while simultaneously trying not to drop/drown them – it’s both the most magical and terrifying time of the first six months.
A few years ago, a headline ran in a broadsheet newspaper, and it completely took me aback. The piece was about my son Seb, he had just made history as the first child with Down’s syndrome to model in a major high street retailer’s ad campaign and it was pretty big news.