When I held my daughter in my arms for the first time, the whole world melted away. The maternity ward, the hospital, London, my career, everything I’d experienced in life up to that point – it all faded into the background. From then on, I knew it was me and my daughter and nothing else. Until my younger children came along too!
Like any first time mum, I’d done everything I could to prepare. I had a nursery picked out, a house full of nappies, I’d read every parenting book going. But then that wave of emotion hit me from every direction. Lying in the hospital bed, all the preoccupations, plans, worries that had filled my life were washed away, replaced by a love I never knew could exist. I told myself nothing would be the same again – and since then I’ve been embracing the change.
Having children changed my life. Yes, it meant a change of career, and a new focus on sustainability and leaving the world a better place for my children, but the change was deeper than that. I became a different person.
My perspective on life has changed, I see things differently now – because my role is different. I will always be a mother first and foremost. A vase on a table isn’t just a vase, it’s a potential hazard. As a mother it’s my job to do something to protect my kids from whatever harm it might pose.
It’s like that with food too. A meal isn’t just something to eat any more. It’s the energy my kids need to grow. It’s how they experience the world and expand their passions, their imaginations. It’s how they interact with and care for their planet.
Whether it’s through sustainable farming, supporting artisanal producers, or preparing delicious meals, when I work with food, what I want to do is share the love that I feel. The love I feel for my children, the love I felt that first moment when I held my daughter in my arms. The moment everything changed, and I started my own journey beyond food.