Sometimes I do wonder, 'Who knows what's yet to come?'

Magali’s family fell apart when her second baby was born: “I’m trying to find a new balance in a life I wasn’t prepared for”

“When we first broke up, there were times I heard a car outside and thought, ‘Maybe he has come back to say he’s changed his mind.’ I kept hoping that he’d realise what he was throwing away. That’s the hardest part, the loss of my family. I’ve not just lost my partner and husband, but the entire base is gone. In the beginning, I found it hard to enjoy my alone time with the kids, because I preferred parenting together. But now I feel like, ‘Okay, I can do this alone too.’ And I know that V and I are better off apart. I’ve seen such an awful side of him. I guess it goes both ways – we’ve long forgotten who we were when we were happy together.”
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Alicia is on a mission to share everything she's learned about motherhood

Alicia struggled with the emotions of a young mother, but consumed every bit of information out there: “Embracing all the changes make you feel better equipped”

“So many of us get caught up in choosing onesies or the colour of the baby room, but those things won’t help you after birth. Preparation will – that’s something a mother does for herself and benefits the baby too. I discovered the concept of ‘matrescence’, the transition from a woman to mother. For me, it felt like an identity crisis. I used to wear so many hats – ‘wife of’, ‘friend of’, ‘employee of’. All of a sudden, I was reduced to ‘mother of’, which was new, scary and at times uncomfortable. I couldn’t recognise my sporty, smart, supportive self anymore – she’d been replaced by an organic milk machine with greasy hair and painful hips. In the meantime, I’ve learned to embrace the change. The other versions of me haven’t died, they’re temporarily on hold.” 
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Magalie and her husband Thomas on their wedding day

Magalie found her cause when her son arrived: “I want to make an impact by raising awareness of the unfiltered realness of motherhood”

”This month, Marcus turned one – a crazy year that has pushed me beyond my limits, further than I could have imagined. If there’s anything I’ve learned, it’s that motherhood isn’t hard because you’re doing it wrong – it’s just hard. It took me a while to understand and accept that it’s not me, nor Marcus or our situation. At the end of the day, I need to trust myself. I’m the one who put my son into the world and who knows what’s right for him better than anyone else. I think that’s the real journey to motherhood: arriving at the point where you realise you’re the one that knows best.” 
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Griet had a baby on her own

Griet had a baby on her own: “Thanks to my support system, I hardly have the feeling I’m in this alone”

“I hold the envelope tight in my left hand as I look for the key to the front door. I reach for the door knob, my mind running a million miles a minute. As if I’m on autopilot, I take off my winter coat and shove my bag in the corner of the hallway. The cold winter air is replaced by cosy warmth when I settle myself into my usual spot on the couch. I take a deep breath and tear the envelope open. The word I’m looking for on the sheet of test results catches my eye immediately. It’s a boy… My body tingles. Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve known that one day I’d have a son. His name would be Niels, after the famous children’s book Nils Holgersson. I might have no clue yet how I’m going to pull off motherhood – but my son and I are going to take on the world together.”
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