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Confessions from the editor

Simply individual!

I loved my babies to bits from the very moment they were born: Jaybird, with her knowing eyes and beautifully solemn little face, and Super Cooper, with his punk hair and ability to make me laugh from the second his chunky 9lb body entered the delivery room.

But I'd be lying if I didn't admit that there were times when I secretly worried whether they were both - er, how can I say this tactfully - normal.

With Jaybird I worried that she was too serious. You could tell she loved me and her daddy, but she'd have nothing to do with anyone else, grandparents included. I'd watch other sociable babies lap up everyone else's attention with giggles and chortles and worry that something was wrong with my shy and retiring one.

Super Cooper was an even bigger concern at various stages throughout his babyhood and toddler years. From 6 months onwards he butted his head against his cot at night, sparking irrational fears of early signs of autism. He then resolutely refused to obey the word 'no' once he found his feet, and would grin charmingly before running away from us at every opportunity. 'Do you think he's a bit, you know, slow?' the Love Of My Life and I would question ourselves at the end of a particularly challenging day. 'Sure, he passed the APGAR test at birth, but maybe they made a mistake,' we'd think!

Needless to say, both babies were and are absolutely fine. Wonderfully normal in terms of development and learning, but still Mara with her \ showing their own distinctly individual behaviour that occasionally makes us think that they're anything but normal!

I've since accepted the fact that most kids' behaviour is just plain weird. Full stop. And that's one of the many reasons why we love 'em. Have a wonderfully abnormal month - I know I will!

own unique kiddies, Cooper, 4, and Jayna, 6

own unique kiddies, Cooper, 4, and Jayna, 6

Mara Lee, Editor

PS To put your own tots' weird and wonderful behaviour into perspective, skip straight to page 58 for our 0-4 behaviour special: 'What's normal, and what's not...' We'd love to hear your baby and toddler tales - just write to us at [email protected]

Our readers 'fess up, too!

What's the best and worst thing about being pregnant?

'The best thing is being spoilt by my partner, and watching my lovely bump grow. The worst thing is that I've had nausea nearly all the way through.' Jennifer Eziefula, 38 weeks

'I really like being pregnant but then I've been lucky because I've had no sickness or aches. But I don't like not being able to eat blue cheese.' Louise Denew, 21 weeks

'I'm a little moody and fed up now, which isn't good obviously. But at the same time my skin's looking great and I love the attention I'm getting.' Abi Bangura, 41 weeks

'The worst thing is getting bigger, particularly before I told everyone at work. The best thing is the excitement about seeing the baby and being over the sickness.' Annabelle Betteridge, 20 weeks

'I've been feeling constantly sick and unwell, so nothing's particularly good about being pregnant at the moment. But I'm sure things will improve!' Voneeta Arora, 15 weeks

letters &emails ver to you

Share your views with us and you could win a fantastic prize!

It's the tops!

I'm pregnant again after a 1 2-year gap and was feeling unsure about it all, as I had my first baby 25 years ago!

But thank goodness for PP! I'm always coming across great articles, such as 25 reasons why it's fab to be a mum!(March 2006). It just put a smile back on my face and, as you say, it's such an amazing feeling walking around knowing you've this little 'secret' life inside you. R Louisa Hardy, Cheshire

It's great to see someone acknowledging even the possibility of having three kids (Womb with a view: Third time clucky?, February 2006). I have two fab boys and am expecting my third, but everyone thinks I'm mad!

The world seems to be geared up for families of one or two kids, from restaurant tables to family tickets and even PP articles â– three just doesn't seem to be a possibility these days. However, like your writer, Carrie Cox, I'm one of three, as is my husband, so it just seemed natural for us. Of course there are finances and space to be considerec - and that's before taking

Champneys health resort, Forest Mere

into account how I'll cope! But I know I just will and that within weeks I'll forget I once had only two children. Sarah Wood, Cheltenham;

A happy lad!

I had to write to say thank you. Last week, my 3-year-old son was feeling poorly and a little sorry for himself, when there was a knock at the door by a man with a huge box. I'd won a train set in one of your competitions, Win a fantastic Thomas and Friends train set (September 2005).

Needless to say, this cheered him up no end and he spent the whole day playing trains and giving me big hugs - you really made the day for both of us! Nicky Griffin, Northampton

Ed's note 'Glad it made your day, Nicky! There are more fab freebies to be won on page 1 25.'

In labour with Van Helsing & Darth Vader!

It was the worst 10 hours of my life followed by the best, most amazing and beautiful moment. The cost of becoming a proud dad Is so little compared to what I saw my wife go through.

Watching someone you ove experience pain is awful. My wife's deep Inhalation of gas and air reminded me of Darth Vader with a chest complaint, and the howls and screams from the other end of the corridor were on a par with a scene from a Van Helsing movie. So I'd like to propose a toast: please raise your mugs of camomile tea and join me in saying, 'To mums!' Glenn Wilson, Northamptonshire

Good advice

As a mum to an 8 month oIc and a 4 year old, I have to be on the alert for health and safety risks. I recently had to deal with an accident when hot liquid was spilled on my 4 year old. Luckily, I'd pinned your article, Accidents will happen, to the inside of my kitchen cupboard and was able to respond quickly and correctly. So thanks, PP! Helen Boles Lanarkshire

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