Beautiful in our eyes: Georgia's story

Georgia

Julia Watson I will never deny the fact that grief has a place when you give birth to a child who brings a set of circumstances very different to what you imagined. Because for nine months, I thought I knew my Georgie.

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15 years with Essential Baby: meet Therese

Therese has been a member of Essential Baby for 15 years and a moderator for eight.

Therese Simpson "Life has a funny way of giving you what you need when you need it the most."

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Born too early: Shea and Tainn's story

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Jannette Cass-Dunbar In Australia, around 57 babies are born prematurely (before 37 weeks) each day. EB member Jannette tells her story about her twin sons, who were born at 24 weeks.

'I could not be more proud of her': A mum's story of life with a child with ASD

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Erin Law Essential Baby member Erin Law is a mum of three. Her daughter Bailey has autism, and Erin has Asperger's Syndrome herself. A year after her diagnosis, and on World Autism Awareness Day, she shares her story.

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Feature member story: Emma and Big Dog Rescue

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As told to Nic Salinas Essential Baby member Emma Bigwood always loved dogs - and now she's making a difference by helping save the lives of many canines. She shares her story.

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Because of you: what we've learnt from our daughter with Down syndrome

Georgia

Julia Watson As part of Down Syndrome Awareness Month, we share a story from EB member Julia Watson, who has a daughter with Down syndrome. She recalls the ways her little girl has changed their family for the better ...

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Even though I've never met you, I couldn't do it without you

Mums group

Jane McKay Jane McKay signed up to the Essential Baby forum when pregnant with her first baby - but she didn't expect to make enduring friendships that would carry her through the highs and lows of motherhood.

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Feature member story: a gift for Chloe

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Nic Salinas Per gram, the infusions Chloe receives are worth more than gold, but for her and her family, the contents are truly priceless. Her mum shares why the gift of blood donation has given the family - and Chloe - a new life.

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Feature member story: My son's type 1 diabetes diagnosis

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Nic Salinas Kristy Watts is mum to a 14-year-old boy and lives in Adelaide, SA. This is the story of how her son was diagnosed with the potentially fatal disease type 1 diabetes.

James' brave battle

Gail and James

Gail Clark In February of this year our entire world crumbled down around us. My beautiful, healthy, strong five and a half year old son James was about to start the hardest fight of his life. He had just been diagnosed with liver cancer.

Feature member story: Feeding Aurora

Martina feeding Aurora

Nic Salinas Diagnosed with Noonan's Syndrome, Aurora Valentine Cunningham was sent to this Earth for only a very short time. Now, during World Breastfeeding Week, Aurora's mother Martina Kerr shares the battle she fought to ensure Aurora received her nourishing breastmilk, despite many obstacles.

Feature member story: Sophie's new liver

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Nic Salinas My name is Jo and I am Sophie’s Mum. Thanks to the life-saving gift she received, from the grieving parents of a child, we have our daughter back.

Our determined little Rose

Feature member story: Rose Thumb

Michelle Irvine Not many people know that babies can have strokes, even unborn babies.

What to expect when you are no longer expecting

Miscarriage

Jayne D'Arcy After my recent miscarriage, I felt that very little has been written about it - which is amazing as it's happening all the time.

FEATURE MEMBER

Don't pity me because my child has Down syndrome

Georgia Watson

Julia Watson Julia talks about the joy her children give her and dealing with Down syndrome and the last thing she ever wants is pity.

Feature member story: Surviving suicide

Surviving suicide

Nic Salinas I always thought when I wrote my story; it would be my journey through fertility problems and recurrent miscarriage, not one of losing a family member to suicide.

A touch of hope

After being told having a baby would be near impossible for me - falling naturally at 40 years old was a miracle and a dream come true.

Leearne Hynes After being told having a baby would be near impossible for me - falling naturally at 40 years old was a miracle and a dream come true.

Confessions of an Oprah fraud

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Essential Baby member Kat was an Oprah fraud, bemused she won the ticket lottery and unsure what all the fuss was about. But then she went to the show...

Gift of mobility for Bryce

Long-term EB member Lorraine Daley and her family had their wish granted this week - a wheel-chair friendly car to enable their terminally-ill son Bryce to leave the house and join on family excursions.

Feature member: Auskick family

Auskick family

Amber Robinson What is it like to be an Auskick family? EB member Jacqui Snelgar, whose son Matt has competed in three seasons of the AFL skills program.

Juliana Fridman

Juliana's Triplets

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Here is the collection of blogs from Juliana Fridman. She has documented her journey of falling pregnant, finding out they were expecting triplets. The trials of carrying a multiple pregnancy, and now the birth and after effects of emergency c-section & health difficulties of Juliana and one of her precious triplets.

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Being a ballet mum

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Deanne Duncombe EB member, Deanne's daughter, Erin wanted to be Angelina Ballerina. In her new pristine uniform Erin looked beautiful as I dropped her off for her first lesson. Not permitted to watch, I left her with complete strangers who belonged to a world unknown to us.

Losing my wife, my babies, my dreams...

Bernie

Nicole Salinas EB member Bernie lost his wife and unborn twin babies due to medical complications. Here he shares his tragic story.

Cooper's story

Essential Baby member Bronwyn with son Cooper.

Nicole Salinas When Cooper came into our world it changed everything. It turned our world upside down, it changed us, it changed our family. It was nothing we had expected, and nothing that we knew.

Mortgage free in four years

Feature member Natalie and her family

Nicole Salinas I clearly recall the day we decided to pay off our mortgage. My husband and I were sitting in the computer room with a cup of coffee and we were looking up the weather as we had decided to go to the snow for a day trip.

In nature's hands

Feature member Nicole with her sons Hugh and Julian

Nicole Salinas I was 28 and expecting my second child. All was well with the pregnancy and we were very excited to be adding to our family. So we were shocked when at our 20 week scan they found a mass so large it was displacing our baby's heart.

Twins times two

Feature member: twins times two

Nicole Salinas My name is Sam. I have four children under four. And, I have a confession to make. I’d love just ONE more. Essential Baby member Sam shares her story of life with two sets of twins.

Feature member: Costello syndrome

Feature member Nicola

Nicole Salinas Nicola suffers from a very rare genetic condition called Costello Syndrome. She is the 14th person to ever be diagnosed in Australia, and there are less than 300 people in the entire world that have the same condition.

Paige: Extra chromosome, extra special

Feature member Danni with her daughters

Nicole Salinas At my first obstetrician appointment, my doctor explained about the NT (nuchal translucency) scan and blood test and told me that I could have this test to see what my risk was for having a child with Down syndrome.

My large family: Love multiplies

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Anni Taylor The washing is stacked higher than superman flies, and nappy-changing has been in operation for the past 18 years. Laura shares the realities and many joys of having a family of 11.

Feature members

Our large families: EB members share

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With seven, eight and 10 children under their respective wings, Essential Baby members Leanne, Susan and Tanya offer an insight into their large families.

Feature member: Violet's story

Feature member Sarah and daughter Violet

Nicole Salinas Violet was born full term and it was devastating to hear after she was born, that she had been born with health problems.

Beating the odds - our premature arrival

Feature member Sharon and son Maxx

Nicole Salinas My husband Nathan and I started trying for our first baby in 2001. After 6 months and a lot of questions from me, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).

A son’s gift

A son's gift

Peter Dubiez Expecting a baby is such a precious gift and my wife, Kylie, and I were awaiting our first. Ultrasounds provide a unique opportunity for dads. For a dad, an ultrasound is our first bonding experience.

Genetic Factor Infertility: Our story

Male factor infertility: our story

Kirrily I had spent almost all my adult life to date falling pregnant, or getting over a pregnancy (as if it were an illness). Yet our home and hearts were still waiting to expand to let in just one special child.

Same-sex parenting: Our story

Feature Member July 09

Nicole Salinas Everyone’s definition of a “normal” family is different. We believe that children in general are very accepting and it’s the parent’s views that influence how other children will treat our son.

Karen's story

Adam in recovery at Westmead Childrens' Hospital.

Nicole Salinas "My 15-year-old son, Adam, has been in Westmead Childrens' Hospital since February 24 after being involved in an accident which left him with burns to 60% of his body. We were told it was very bad and to go home and pray.”

A beautiful but broken heart

Ky and Mark and their children Daniel and Bella.

Nicole Salinas Scratch just below the surface and you will find a family who is grieving the loss of three children.

Ghania's blog

The accident

EB blogger Ghania Dib

Ghania Dib I was in a state of complete shock. But even then, with the world spinning crazily and darkness threatening to engulf me, I knew that I had managed to do the most important thing - ensure both the safety of myself and that of my child.

Homeschooling: Our story

Cody and Heidi doing a Science experiment for 'school'

Nicole Salinas We took our seven-year-old son out of school at the end of third term last year after seeing him becoming increasingly unhappy at school and his behaviour disruptive and uninvolved. EB member and Mum Cindy shares her experience of home-schooling.

My VBAC Story

Anne Anne shares the experience of her traumatic first birth and her successful attempt at a vaginal birth after caesar (VBAC) to deliver her second child.

Liz's VBA2C story

Liz My third child was born after a successful vaginal birth after two caesars (VBA2C) - drug and intervention free at the local public hospital.

Angela's VBAC story

Angela I was just so happy and so proud of myself, not just for having a VBAC but for being able to be in control of my birth experience.

Features archive

My baby was born with no thumbs

Baby Sienna was born with no thumbs.

Katherine Moffett I always dreamed of having two children. A boy and a girl. Perfect, a pigeon pair as some may say. I married the love of my life. We welcomed our first child into the world in 2005, our beautiful son Kobe and our second child Sienna, a little girl in 2008.

My two sons' anaphylaxis

Feature member May 2009

Nicole Salinas My two gorgeous sons have a life threatening type of allergy called anaphylaxis. It's a very severe form of allergic reaction that must be treated as a medical emergency requiring immediate treatment and urgent medical attention.

Schooling through Steiner

Choosing Steiner Education

Nicole Salinas In two years, my bouncy child had become withdrawn, clingy and competitive. She started comparing herself to others—a strategy common in schools focused on producing academic achievers.

A motherless Mothers' Day

EB blogger Ghania Dib

Ghania Dib It wasn’t until I became a mother that I really understood the significance of mother’s day. Unfortunately, that mother’s day – my first – turned out to be mum’s last. And it breaks my heart to know that I didn’t get to share it with her.

The greatest of hurdles: Sophie Smith shares her story

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Tracey Spicer, One2OneConversations Sophie Smith is a person whose story any person can relate to. Sophie faced the greatest of hurdles, loss and tragedy, yet her defiance, her courage; her practicality in each and every circumstance provides us all hope.

Post-natal depression: an interview with Katie Brown

Tracey Spicer, One2OneConversations Katie Brown is a journalist, yoga teacher, infant massage practitioner and mother of three. Her tumultuous journey through work, motherhood and post natal depression has become a book, aptly titled “Mother Me”.

Asperger's - through adult eyes

Feature member Cherry

Nicole Salinas Asperger syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder, each individual a different ‘colour’ in the spectrum. Essential Baby member, mother and wife Cherry shares her experience.

Forums

Feature Member forums

Chat with other EB members about the Feature Member stories you've read.

Famous mums

WDYT?

One of the most popular sections of the EB forum, 'What do you think?' gives parents a chance to discuss a wide range of topics. Have your say!

Jane Kennedy is EB's Mum in Profile

.. and is mum to 5! - read hers and other famous mums stories here

Mumtrepreneurs

Working mums

Be inspired by Australian mums who have created their own businesses.

Blogger stories

My story - the unexpected journey to have another baby

This time, however, things didn’t go quite as smoothly. This time I would come to learn just how hard it can be to make, and keep, a baby.

Photo Galleries

Essential Baby Feature Members - Life Stories

Meet Essential Baby's Feature Members: amazing people who have travelled incredible journeys. They share their inspirational experiences: EB feature member stories.

Ada Nicodemou: 'I can never be completely happy again'

Home and Away actress Ada Nicodemou has opened up about the loss of her stillborn baby.

10 things to consider when you're thinking about trying for a baby

Before you start tracking your menstrual cycle and reading up on the best positions to get pregnant, there are a few other things you may want to consider.

Baby Gammy's dad tries to claim charity money

The biological father of baby Gammy has reportedly tried to access charity money raised for the little boy's medical costs.

How special surgery and IVF can create a post-vasectomy baby

Cricket legend Glenn McGrath and his second wife Sara are expecting their first child together, thanks to IVF and a delicate surgical sperm retrieval process that helped the couple to conceive.

Belle Gibson's mother 'disgusted and embarrassed'

The mother of disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has accused her daughter of lying about her childhood in an attempt to garner public sympathy.

Life On Mars

It's men who need 'retraining', not women

We are all responsible for our own behaviour. Telling victims to harden up is wrong.

Doctor's mobile phone 'left inside c-section mum'

A new mum claims a doctor left his mobile phone inside her after delivering her baby via caesarean section.

I'm a mum and I'm following my dreams

I want my kids to know that no matter what happens in life, you can still be who it is that you've always wanted to be.

Those first daycare days

I had this innate 'mum' moment the other day.

'If one person had listened, my life would have been so different'

Katherine's father will die in prison for the horrifying sexual abuse of his daughter. Yet she is the one with the true life sentence.

Couple to celebrate terminally ill baby's birthday in unique way

Baby Jai Bishop has lived at Starship Hospital for the past seven months, with his parents flying back and forth from Hokitika, 1100km away, to be by his side.

This new plan undermines breastfeeding and baby health at everyone's expense

Mothers, babies, the health system and the wider society are going to pay the price of this new budget.

Trying to understand why your baby is upset

Working out what’s underlying your baby's fussiness can be a case of trial and error. Here are a few common causes and how you can remedy each one.

When those you love judge your parenting

In today's society, never has it been harder to parent without judgment. But what about when judgment is coming from closer to home?

Don't play the victim blame game with family violence

It's not a woman's job to teach violent men how to behave.

11 truths about having two under two

When I told my mothers’ group that my husband and I had started trying for our second baby they told me I was crazy. Now I can see why.

'How do you say goodbye to someone you've only just started to get to know?'

New mum Sarah Sutton was faced with a shattering scenario no person should have to endure.

It's a ... boy! Couple welcomes son number 13

"It's a boy!" That's the phrase Kateri Schwandt has heard in labour delivery ward for the 13th time in her life.

Six reasons to go for a walk

Can't find time to get to the gym? It could be just as beneficial to put your baby in the stroller and go for a walk.

Seven questions you should be asking about your health cover

If the last time you assessed your health cover was five years ago, there’s a chance it may no longer suit your needs. To ensure it’s still right for your family, click here for seven questions to ask.

Forum

Feature Member Forum

Visit the Feature Member forum to discuss any of the stories here.

My Work

Working parents

News articles and practical advice on the working lives of Australian parents - from changes to maternity leave laws to the juggle of getting to work on-time without cereal smeared on your work trousers.

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What's hot on EB

Where are the childcare places?

It’s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?

The pain of not having babies and not knowing why

After seven years of wishing, hoping, crying, punching pillows and shouting "why me?!", the end result is more than I ever thought possible.

Getting your family finances in order

Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.

Mum shares graphic selfie to warn against tanning

A mum has shared a graphic photo of her skin cancer treatment as a warning to others.

Does parenthood make us happier?

We can certainly gain higher levels of happiness when we become parents, but the trick is to not get overwhelmed by the pressures of raising our kids.

No, having a dog is not like having a human child

It's obvious these people dote on their pets, but they're barking up the wrong tree.

Toddler styling

Seven things my toddler taught me about my home

My standards at home were never that high but having a two-year-old has taught me to be cool with chaos.

Australia's top baby names of 2014

The numbers have been crunched and it's official: Australian parents are having a bit of an 'O' moment.

How to set up the perfect nursery for your baby

You'll soon be meeting your baby, but you've got one big task to get done first: setting up a comfy, calming nursery you'll both be able to enjoy.

Childcare rebate: tougher rules for stay-at-home mums

A new form of activity testing will be introduced to ensure the highest subsidies go to parents who contribute the most to the workforce.

Top baby names

Baby Names

The numbers are in and we can now bring you the 2014 top baby name list for Australia.