Longing to become a mother is debatably one of the strongest, and sometimes all-consuming, instincts a woman could have. The journey getting there is different for everyone; For Auckland mum of two, Kellie Pardoe, the road was long and often bumpy. Kellie talks to us about her seven year struggle and what it is was like meeting her babies for the first time.
Tell us about your kids?
They are both so different! Jackson is a sensitive, caring soul, he will do things quietly and is happy in his own company. Liv is my wild one. She’s full of character and always making me laugh. She’s a bull at a gate, always dropping things and never misses a beat. She would be happy to always be by my side and is my real little buddy.
Making babies wasn’t easy for you, could you share with us your journey to conception with Jackson?
No, it wasn’t as I initially anticipated it would be. My mum had said how easy conception had been for her, and other family members, so I assumed it would be similar for me.
We actually got pregnant the first month trying and were over the moon. But devastatingly, at at our scan we found there was no heartbeat. It was heart-breaking and particularly because we hadn’t been aware anything was wrong. I didn’t have any bleeding or cramps so it was a complete shock. What followed was two years of unsuccessful attempts to conceive. We referred to fertility associates for all the tests, which came back normal. We did a couple of rounds of clomiphine treatment which is a fertility drug to help ovulation, but sadly after each round we received a negative pregnancy test. We decided to have three rounds of IUI with Injecatbles. Again, devastatingly, we didn’t receive the positive result we were hoping for. After this, we were both emotionally drained and I felt I needed a break to pull myself together before starting IVF. We had a two month break and during this time discovered I was pregnant... all without the help of fertility treatment! We were absolutely over the moon, but I was also very cautious of getting too attached after our first missed miscarriage. Once we passed the three-month mark, I relaxed more and we started to tell people the news. I couldn’t believe it; we were finally going to become parents!! The pregnancy itself didn’t come without its struggles... Jackson was IUGR (inter uterine growth restricted) so had to be closely monitored. We were prepared for the worst outcome from our obstetrician. Jackson arrived at 36 weeks, weighing just over 4lb but such a fighter. We only had a week in hospital and then we were home... ready to start the next phase of the journey.
And did it get any easier second time round with Olivia?
Yes! I prepared myself for the high chance it would likely take a while, but on the third month trying we conceived Liv. I was shocked but so happy. A completely different experience that I was extra grateful for after our journey first time.
Do you have any words of comfort for those on the journey, whether they are at the start of, or deep in the trenches…
Hang in there... you’ll hopefully look back one day and it will all be a memory as you hold your precious baby in your arms. I remember feeling like it was never going to happen for us. Try and appreciate the small moments of joy during your journey... enjoy time with your partner too, because soon enough there won’t be a lot of one on one.
What was it like meeting Jackson for the first time?
Incredible and so surreal. I remember him being placed on my chest and I couldn’t quite believe he was mine. Those were hands down the most amazing moments of my life, meeting each of my babies.
And then a daughter! Tell us about welcoming her into the world?
Liv has been on a mission since conception... and her personality reflects that. She came into this world lightening fast, I only just made it to hospital for her birth. She contracted viral meningitis at 6 weeks old and then we struggled with her growth and feeding for the first year. But she’s made up for that now... my little firecracker!
Do you think your experience shaped or altered your views on motherhood?
I do. On those really tough days, I look at my babies and remember that feeling of yearning to have one so bad. I remember the days when I wanted so badly what I now have and am so grateful.
What does motherhood mean to you?
Motherhood is a never-ending adventure, where you get to watch your child grow and learn and transform from a helpless dependent baby to an independent amazing little human. All while they push you to the brink of insanity and beyond, but you don't mind because in those frustrating and sometimes completely overwhelming moments, looking back they seem to be the best moments of your life. Being a parent is hard, but in the end it's the most rewarding job in the world
And Sunday 12th – what does a dream Mother’s Day look like for you?
By far, my fave part of Mother’s Day is the handmade cards the kids make for me. Other than that, I would love to have a sleep in then breakfast out as a family. Perhaps a sneaky solo massage too!
A bit on your style, what do you look for in a handbag.
Now that I’m out of the nappy bag stage, I go for a smaller bag, something big enough to just fit sunnies, keys, my small Saben zip purse and some lip gloss. I usually go for black but have been loving the new season autumn colours, the dark brown and grey-blue are my faves.
Favourite all time Saben handbag
Matilda - She is my go-to, daily bag, perfect size and sits so comfortably across body which is my preferred way to wear my bag.
Next on your wish list?
Actually, another suitcase! I looooove the Saben luggage and use my current suitcase on every trip away. I’d like the carry on and bigger sized cases.
Besties and business partners, Nia and Talia are the creative duo behind local womenswear brand Layplan. On the blog we chat about business, what inspires them and intentional design.