This time last week I did something completely out of my comfort zone and went to London to talk at an event. I'd received the invitation to be part of the 'Dare to Dream' panel at Marie Claire's At Work Live event sometime back at the start of the year when Mabli was just a few weeks old and my first reaction was 'oh wow but oh god no!'. I remember reading it to Tom and him saying straight away 'you should do it!' and feeling like really? Is this something I could do??
We both agreed that it was a fantastic opportunity and even though I was reading the email in my PJ's having given birth just weeks ago I had enough time before the event to start to get my brain a bit more into gear (ha!). As the months flew by, it suddenly became April and the month the event was in and my nerves jumped up a gear.
The team at Marie Claire were so nice in their emails, giving me examples of the questions that might be asked and letting me know who was on the panel with me. They also welcomed Tom and Mabli to come with me which was a great help as she currently doesn't take a bottle of expressed milk. Anyone who's had a baby will know how much your brain struggles to work on a daily basis in those early months and feeling a bit more prepared really put me a bit more at ease.
I'm not sure if it's becoming a mother to a little baby again but my confidence isn't what it was a year or so again. Probably a mix of hormones and tiredness and my body not looking or feeling the way that it was pre-pregnancy but was so unsure if I could do it. The idea of speaking in front of people or of saying anything that might be remotely useful or interesting was a huge deal for me. A couple of days before the event the baby had a particularly bad night and I was thought there was no way I'd be able to get on that stage without my mind going blank or bursting into tears.
Still the day came around and I felt calmer than I had done in ages, I think because I knew that regardless of how it went it would be over in a few hours! When we got there the team were so accommodating and Andrea the features editor of Marie Claire who was hosting the panel confided she'd also done a speaking event when her baby was 4 months old which made me feel a lot better.
I felt like I answered my questions well and it was interesting to see everyones different opinions of things (as they really did differ at times!). I had some lovely readers contact me afterwards about it which really made me feel a million dollars and if you happen to be the lady who grabbed me after the event, do shoot me an email as I'm so sorry I had to rush off (breastfeeding and the train timetable called). I'd love to help out if I can.
Mabli even got a cuddle with Caroline Hirons who along with Ruth Crilly are pretty much the only beauty vloggers I watch.
When it comes to the things this blog bring about it always surprises me how far I've come with it and what a lot of lovely people are interested in me and my family. I'm so thankful, it's honestly changed my life.
I've been lucky enough to be nominated as a finalist in both the MADS and the BIBS this year. I'm under the 'baby' and 'lifestyle' categories in the MADS so if you want to fling me a vote there then just click here. I'm also under the 'beauty and lifestyle' category in the BIBS which is incredible, if you wanted to vote there then this is the link.
Thanks as ever for your support! Btw I made a teeny tiny video of my day speaking at the Marie Claire 'At Work Live' event here if you fancy a watch!