I’m Hayley Berlingeri, Adelaide born and bred, mamma of three, and here I am just finding my way (AKA fumbling!!) through my days with my little ones, trying to be the best version of me that I possibly can be (which more often than not, results in me flopped out on the sofa at 10:34pm eating an entire packet of Mint Slice bickies, and thanking God that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it!) Before the babes came in to being, I poured my heart into my career as a Junior Primary teacher and JP Coordinating Principal, I travelled the world, near and far, and I solidly slept. But since then have given every waking minute to motherhood and all its mess, mayhem and marvel. Oh, and I love to share our stories in squares on our Insta page @sweetlittlestory xxx
What’s the most valuable or important lesson your kids have taught you?
It’s funny, I thought I’d be the one doing the teaching, but they have taught me so much. I learn from them on the daily. And it’s often things I never even knew I needed to know! They’ve taught me what it means to love, and to be loved, without expectation. They’ve taught me true patience (Ratbag Romeo, especially! Haha!) They’ve taught me what it feels like to be tired beyond belief but to want to push through that haze to be the best mother / wife / daughter / sister / friend I can be.
But I think the most important thing is that they’ve taught me who I really am. They’ve shown me my purpose. They’ve enabled me to know what it means to have a ‘mother’s heart’. And, without sounding too clichè, I believe they’ve helped me find my true self. If it wasn’t for them, and becoming a mother, I wouldn’t have had my eyes opened to this new life, and my mindset transformed to see all the wonder and beauty in it.
How do you know when you’re ready to start having children?
Oh, God, is anyone ever ready??!! I know I wasn’t! In fact, my husband, Paolo was the one who forced me into it! He had lured me into the ‘lets make a baby’ chat a few times, and I’d always agreed, but then quickly reneged! I think because I loved my life so much, and I didn’t want any slippery little suckers coming along and upsetting the apple cart! But, as Paolo pointed out to me, I was getting a bit long in the tooth (nearly gouged his eyes out at that point! And don’t you just HATE that as gals, time is against us when it comes to having children?! That damn body clock of ours!!) and that maybe we’d better start trying for a baby soon, just in case we came across a few hurdles. Which, thankfully and gratefully, we didn’t.
But nothing, literally NOTHING (!!!) can prepare you for that first baby and all that comes with it. No matter how many details your own mum tells you. No matter how many friends describe it. No matter how many books you’ve read, or babies you’ve held, NOTHING can REALLY prepare you. The complete and utter life change. The long and lonely nights. The unbelievable tiredness that follows you around in a foggy haze for months on end. The worry / stress / anxiety over every teensy detail (OMG she only fed on my boob for 14 minutes instead of 15! Will she survive????!!! …yes, I was that crazy!!). And the love. Oh, the love!!! A love like you’ve never known before. So pure. So true. So strong that you feel your heart might just pop at any moment. Nothing on earth can prepare you for that love.
Got a question about life, motherhood or eating chocolate biscuits… I’ll give you an answer!