Umi Spotlight: Mary Ene

A mum in the United Kingdom

With Umi Spotlight, we are sharing the best of what other mothers have figured out both in their motherhood journey and in life.

On this edition, Mary Ene shares some of the traits in herself and her husband that her children now exhibit. She also shares some of the best advice she got before becoming a mother as well as the legacy from her own upbringing that she is now practising with her kids. Read more about her here

Going back to the way you were raised, are there any styles of parenting or traditions your parents raised you with that you now also do with your kid(s)?
Oh yes! My parents started training me early with chores when I was younger and I remember my dad paying us salary monthly. I also now give my kids what we call "monthly reward," not salary. Maybe when they grow older, I can call it salary. Also I started cooking at the age of 7+ and going to the market by 8. My first son is 7+ and he has started cooking too

What about your upbringing would you prefer not to repeat with your own journey as a parent?
Nothing. I will just add to how my parents raised me with a modern twist.

What attributes of yours or that of your husband have you began to see in your kids?
My kids like good food and cooking; they got that from me.
They like socializing with people and my husband and I are social people.
My 2nd son is very neat and organized like his dad .

What was postpartum like for you? Did you have help? Were there any complications with your mental and physical health? And if there was, how did you deal with it?
I will say God was my strength during postpartum. I prepared my mind mentally to avoid going into depression. Also my family and friends were very supportive physically or via the phone.

How do you relax? What is self care for you?
Going to the movies or just watching T.V at home. I love hanging out for lunch or dinner with family and friends too.

What do you miss most about your life before kids?
I miss been able to sleep through the night without worrying about the kids or checking on them.

What was the best advice you got about being a mother to your kids?
Every baby is different and you keep learning as time goes what works for each child.

How would you describe your parenting style?
Hmmm.... a mix of old and modern day parenting.

What about motherhood and parenting do you still struggle with?
I am a time continuous person so trying to always get the kids ready to avoid going late is my fear.

How do you discipline your kids (instead of beating them)?
Lots of talking, time out,  deprive them of snack, game or T.V.  Depending on the issue, then we weigh the punishment.

What's your happiest childhood memory?
Hmmm... I have a lot ooo, which one will I pick. I think going out with my family is one of them.

What would you prefer your children’s memory of their childhood be?
I want my kids to be happy and know that they are always loved by their parents.

What is your proudest moment so far as a mum?
Anytime my child says "I love you mummy, you are the best"

Who are you, aside being a mum?
I am a daughter,  sister, friend and a H.R consultant.

What was your experience with healthcare when you were pregnant and during the delivery of your kid(s)?
God showed up always. I had different experiences for each of my pregnancies, but nothing extra ordinary.

What are your thoughts on family planning? Did you plan your kids or did you just go with the flow?
Yes ooo, I use family planning.  The first child was planned but the other two were God's plan.

If you could do something different about your choice of career and family life, what would it be?
Nothing, I am grateful for all I have.

What advice(s) do you have for new mums in Africa?
Just take it easy and know that you are doing well in your own pace. Try not to put yourself under pressure or compare your life or child's progress with other mum or children. What works for A might not work for B, so find what works for you and try to always make yourself happy.

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