Birth, Beyoncé and a bad choice of bra

Yippee yippee it’s time for our monthly guest blog, from YOU – our favourite people. So for August sit back and enjoy the always-fabulous Kate’s story………


“There is a photograph of Beyoncé that was released shortly after the birth of her daughter, Blue Ivy. She looks beautiful, composed and blissfully happy – every inch the Most Fabulous Woman in The World. There is a photograph of me in recovery an hour after my son, Oscar, was born. I look like Beetlejuice in a cheap nightie and that’s being kind.

Things started off in a very simple fashion. My first trimester was uneventful apart from a ropey fortnight, when all I could eat was Sugar Puffs and Hula Hoops and developed a strong aversion to men’s deodorant, narrowly avoiding vomiting over several colleagues. The second trimester was a breeze and by this stage I had convinced myself that I could just ‘crack on’ with birth and armed with a pragmatic attitude towards pain, I would emerge the other side as a serene superwoman.

Unfortunately my body had other ideas and the third trimester never quite felt right. As D-Day neared, we were spending an increasing amount of time in Triage. I think I knew deep down that the final act was not going to be straight forward but I kept nurturing the ideal. In the end, labour and birth was a blur of Pethidine, gas and air and panic. All I can really remember is regretting the decision to wear an extremely ill-fitting bra and trying not to laugh as I was instructed to pose like an ‘angry cat’ to enable the insertion of the spinal anaesthetic. As each of the theatre staff politely introduced themselves, I silently willed them to hurry up with the C-section and get Oscar out.

I didn’t expect to be spending almost a week in hospital and naively had no grasp of the fact that staff would not be aware of the difficulties surrounding Oscar’s birth. The first time I had to ask a midwife to help me care for Oscar because I was unable to move, the look she gave me left me feeling like Mariah Carey, demanding that the cubicle be decked out with crystals and white doves. I soon learnt that clear communication was imperative and I had to be upfront about what I needed and why to preserve my own sanity and that of the staff.  Five days’ worth of beige food later and we were allowed home.

I had pictured myself post-birth, strolling through the park for hours on end, looking and behaving pretty much like I did before. The reality was that the first time I left the house I could barely make it round the block. I subsequently undertook similar trips with poo on my leggings, wee on my top and vomit on my shoulder. On one particularly frenetic occasion, I accessorised with all three on the same day.

I didn’t anticipate how much I would need other people and the positive impact of their love and encouragement: the fellow mummies I met through The Baby Journey with whom I have laughed like a drain over poo mishaps and the insanity of sleep deprivation; the long-term friends who have reminded me of who I was before; the family members who have told me not to be so hard on myself; and the husband who tells me that I am the best mummy in the world.

I had many preconceptions about birth and motherhood and I don’t regret having unrealistic ideals. They have faded now that Oscar has brought me moments of happiness that I never could have imagined. I didn’t envisage singing Oscar songs about stars and snot. I didn’t picture myself looking at leaves with him in the garden and then going back inside to read a story about monkeys. I had no clue as to how big and utterly immeasurable mama love would actually be. I am no Beyoncé in either looks or talent but when Oscar smiles at me, I feel like the Most Fabulous Woman in The World. I didn’t anticipate that and my heart feels like it will burst, every time it happens.”


Gorgeous! Thank you Kate. And for the record ladies – you all look radiant after your babies arrived, Beyonce’s got nothing on you!

If you would like to share your story then just pop it over to us at, we would love to hear from you.