With nineteen years between my first and last children, our family is hardly a well thought-out plan! Yet, from a young age, I was deeply committed to the idea of motherhood. My own mother wed the Navy. Father spent their marriage at sea, while mum raised babies alone, sorely disappointed with her lot. Watching her private battle, I grew up knowing women had few choices.

So, I loudly proclaimed my career plans. My childish talk of fame and fortune was silently frowned out. Mother told me often I was far too big for my boots. Imagination proved my saving grace. I constantly escaped into make believe, developing a rich inner world and a fascination around what makes people tick. I hid my fantasies deep inside, where nobody could rubbish them. Alone, I created an unshakeable belief in universal bounty and built the solid conviction I would prevail over all obstacles.

Many years later, I was already raising three boys and my eldest was heading off to university. It was an unwelcome surprise to find myself expecting again at 41. Until I switched on the TV to distract myself from labour and watched “The Commitments” fill the screen! The name we chose for her means "great mother".