The rise of millennial mums – those born between the mid-1980s and the late 1990s – is changing the image of motherhood.
Part of a new trendy set, the millennial mothers are proving that one can be a new mother and be at the peak of one’s career.
These women have also ditched the gown and slipper gifts in favour of a trip to the spa and the company of their own mothers.
Influencer Amanda Jingela speaks to City Press while tending to one-month-old Lunamo Zoya Ngcobo.
“She is a quiet baby, but shows signs of being feisty. This time last year, I dreaded Mother’s Day because it was the second Mother’s Day without my mum,” she says.
“Days like Mother’s Day are a painful reminder of her passing and absence, but my mother-in-law and sister-in-law have had a huge influence in helping me parent Lunamo. Being a mother has given me purpose – I’d been going through life aimlessly after my mother’s passing. But after finding out I was pregnant with Lunamo, my purpose in life was reawakened. I look forward to the next day and to creating memories with my daughter.”
However, the independent Jingela has had to make some adjustments.
“I am such a hands-on person and I find it difficult to ask for help, so accepting help has been really tough and testing,” she says.
“One of the toughest lessons is that there is no correct formula to parenting. Other mums are always offering advice on how to do certain things, but I’ve learnt that every baby is different and what works for your baby might not work for mine.”
Jingela will celebrate Mother’s Day at a spa.
Nkateko (Takkies) Dinwiddy (28)
Nkateko Dinwiddy and baby Sana
Choreographer Nkateko Dinwiddy describes her 16-month-old baby girl Sana as “very smart, independent and bubbly”.
While motherhood came as a surprise to her, she’s always loved kids, “so having one of my own is mind-blowing”.
This is her second Mother’s Day as a mum, and Dinwiddy will be spending it at a spa with her own mum.
“My first Mother’s Day was very special and it was one of the things that put an official ‘you’re a mum’ stamp on things. It was a weird transition for me, but I absolutely loved the extra spoils. I’m very close with my mother; she is my best friend. I must say now that I’m a mum and I can relate, I respect her on another level,” she says.
“Motherhood has taught me to be smart with my time and decisions. I now work even harder than I did before because I want the best not only for me, but for my daughter and family. My daughter watches me every day – I want to inspire her to be the best version of herself.”
Aisha Baker (29)
Aisha Baker and baby Khalid
Blogger Aisha Baker says motherhood has made her more organised: “My baby was not planned, but my husband and I have nieces and nephews, so we have loads of experience with kids and we were excited to be parents.”
She describes 12-month-old Khalid as “a little jungle cat. He is friendly and charming and loves socialising, but has a wild side, which sends his mama into a bit of a tailspin.
“I suffered with postnatal depression for three months after the birth of my son. It was tricky as I was alone and my husband [Proteas cricket star Wayne Parnell] was out of the country. Now I am much stronger and happier after getting the best help possible and the support from my own mum.
“My mother is a magnificent and strong mum. She always encouraged us to follow our dreams and work hard. She didn’t have many rules and allowed us to always be ourselves. I plan to instil that in my son.”
While uncertain what’s in store for Mother’s Day, she says she anticipates a surprise from her husband.
“I’m hoping he sends me a surprise as we are doing things long distance right now! But I will be spending the day with my mum and sister-in-law and our kids.”
Tshepi Vundla (28)
Tshepi Vundla and baby Sibabalwe
Stylist and influencer Tshepi Vundla says being a mother to her son Sibabalwe Lehakwe Bogopa made her appreciate her own mum more.
“Motherhood has been the best thing in the world, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The birth of my son didn’t go according to plan, but we both came out good and healthy. My son was the best surprise,” she says.
She describes the 19-month-old as “a funny, animated, loving little boy who loves dancing and singing”.
Vundla says being a mum also means far less sleep.
“I’m not allowed to be selfish any more – I have to be serious about life and work and prepare things for my son. I have to balance my time more. My son comes first so I work around him,” she says.
Vundla will spend Mother’s Day with her mum and sister.
“My mother is my best friend. We fight about a few things – she’s old-fashioned regarding some techniques – but she gets that I would love to raise my son my way. I’ll be at a Mother’s Day event with her and my sister.”