Broadcaster, CEO, creative director, podcaster, columnist and mother Laura Jackson is the definition of a multitasker. She knows first hand the juggle and the struggle that comes with parenthood and working life but she joined Gi on this week’s Happy Mum Happy Baby to talk about the joys she’s found in her role as a mother of two.
Laura, founder of Glassette, came from a blended “hectic, large Northern family” and felt like when it came to starting her own family, she wanted to “make things a bit simpler”. But the reality of having kids is rarely simple. For Laura one of the big challenges she faced was the pressure around timing.
“You feel that pressure”
She explains: “I think there’s a lot of pressure on women which I absolutely hate. You meet a boy or you get married and it’s ‘oh when are you having a baby?’ Then you have a baby and it’s ‘When are you having another one?’ and you’re just constantly asked. I know that people do mean well but as a woman you you know you feel that pressure.”
She added: “I feel like I’m a real polymath hybrid person, whatever you want to call it, and it was my telly days and I was like oh well I’m not an important person – people don’t want to see me pregnant on the telly. I don’t want to take a back seat because I’m worried that my career won’t take off so there’s all these things going around in my mind and just figuring out when would be a good time. I think I was listening to people and they were like ‘there’s never a good time, if you want to be a mum just crack on and do it’”.
Laura treated her two pregnancies completely differently. For the first, she “carried on with every day life like I’m not going to be this pregnant person that doesn’t do this or follows all the rules or whatever I just kind of ignored the fact that I was pregnant,” but she leaned in to the second and “grabbed the horn by the balls”.
“I was like right ‘I’m pregnant. I’m gonna research this. I’m gonna find out what happens to my body and why I’m feeling like this and what I should eat and what I shouldn’t eat and how I should be looking after myself.’ Which is none of the things I did with Sid. I threw myself into it I had a completely different birthing experience and pregnancy experience”.
Her totally different birth experience with her second child involved a (planned) home birth that happened in 40 minutes and a whole cast of people who took on various different roles.
“My sister is so funny she said ‘do you want me to read you a book?’ and I said ‘no, I don’t want you to read me a book, get your phone out and time me!’ It was a book called Cozy by by a friend of mine called Laura Weir and she started reading me this book and I was like ‘you are insane’. Half an hour later I was in the living room and we were trying to fill up the birthing pool. My sister was walking around trying to fill the pool up with a blending cup. I thought ‘you could be here all day!’”.
“My poor brother-in-law was stood in the doorway – he didn’t know what to do, couldn’t look at me in the face. My sister was still walking around with this like blender full of like water that was absolutely not going to fill the pool up and John was just like trying like looking for towels and things. When Debbie, the midwife came in she was like ‘what is happening?! You do this, you do this, you do this’ and then I was like ‘oh my god, how long, how long? and she said ‘honestly just two pushes and I reckon he’s out. And that was it’”.
For more of Laura Jackson’s chat with Gi, head to wherever you usually find your podcasts. The episode, and all of Series Nine so far is on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify or check out the YouTube video below. Listen to all other episodes of Happy Mum Happy Baby here.