Kellie Ward talks about parenting, appreciation & what inspires her everyday
Kellie Ward is a mother to her daughter Elsie, is recently married to her husband Jacob, she runs a family day care business from her home, has a long term project of studying psychology and also teaches water exercise classes at her local pool. In this interview she shares very honestly her personal experiences of life with her (amazing) young family.
What have you learnt to deeply appreciate about yourself as a woman since having a baby?
So very much. I have learnt that there is beauty in the everyday. That life doesn’t need to be hectic to be wonderful and that you cannot pour from an empty cup.
My life went from working three jobs and studying full time to having a baby. I had so much time on my hands and it freaked me out (it still does from time to time). It has forced me to slow down and to appreciate what I have right here and now. If I don’t it is all too easy to get caught up in what might have been, I could have been a psychologist by now, I should have had a successful career by now.
It has been a marker for me to stop and appreciate all that I am doing, this moment. How when I am present, my life, myself and everything in between is enough. There is such a contrast in the way that I think and move when I am appreciative and when I am not. It is absolutely amazing how much it makes a difference not only to my mental and physical health, but the way I interact with all others.
What has been the most challenging moment or stage of parenting and motherhood so far and how did you move through that experience and what did you learn?
The most challenging stage of parenting for me doesn’t actually have anything to do with my child at all – it was realising that I am enough. It is not something that I have in anyway mastered but I continually work on every day. That everything I do shapes not only my world but her world as well. Her adoration and appreciation for me is second to none. It doesn’t come from all that I do. It comes from who I am. I am her guardian and in a way she is mine, she keeps me in check and I make sure that she doesn’t hurt herself too much. To accept that amount of love from another and not feel guilty about not being enough for them is a momentous task. One that I gladly undertake daily.
If you could have the influence in raising children that might eventually be parents themselves what is it that you would want to express/present/role model/educate to them about preparing for the whole spectrum of parenting from pregnancy and birth through to parenting? What is essential?
Essential oils (joking). My words of wisdom would just be to allow everything to be as it is. Trust your child and most importantly trust yourself. You both know what you are doing, even if you are not consciously aware of it 100% of the time. Don’t force anything or make excuses for the way that you choose to parent (something I am working on). You don’t need to justify your reasons and something that worked yesterday may not work today and that is more than alright. The job that you are undertaking is huge and no one is perfect so do your best to not compare.
What has your daughter offered to you by her reflection and way of being that has allowed you to consider a different way of being or living life?
She has a thirst for life that is unmatched. Every task that she undertakes she is present in. She knows what she wants and compromising is not in her nature, something that I both admire and appreciate deeply. She only takes me seriously when she knows that I am committed to my decision, she can smell uncertainty and fear and will use it to her advantage. She is herself, consistently. No excuses.
After having one child and all of the learning that that has brought, how does that change or inspire the way you prepare for having a second child?
Honestly I wouldn’t change much. I love the way that we are parenting and embracing who she is. We are not perfect, but we are committed to learning and each other. It both excites and terrifies us at the thought of having a second child. Although I know whatever soul comes into our little family they will be what is needed for us in this moment and we will be able to teach them what they need this life.
What part does your relationship with your partner play and offer in the balance of family life?
Oh my goodness, my wonderful husband. He cares for us on a level that I have never felt before. We balance each other and pull one another into line if we stray too far from who we are. If I ever drop the ball he is there to pick it up and vice versa. He supports me to be the person that I want to be and parent the way that we want to parent.
Image by Cupcakes Photography