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Pregnancy & Parenting

Real Mum Interview : Radio Presenter Kamal Kaur

1. Which 3 things would you like the MumsVillage audience to know about you?

-I love to cook even though I’m not a fancy cook.
-I want to write a book.
-Can you see what I did there? I’m working on writing a cook book.

2. What is your occupation?

I’m a radio presenter at East FM and I have been a columnist for the Nation and the Star. I’ve also written for several magazines. Sometimes I emcee events as well.

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We like Numbers

1. How many kids do you have and what are their ages?

2 kids! My daughter is 15 going on 23 and my son is 11 going on ‘my sister has zits hahaha’.

2. How many diapers do you think you’ve changed?

More than what my pedometer shows on a daily basis! Also do nieces and nephews diapers count?

3. How many selfies do you take in a week?

Perhaps 3 or 4 and only if the eyeliner is on point. My phone is filled with my kids unlocking the phone and leaving their ‘carbon emissions’ in my camera roll. I’m saving their silly selfies to use in a PowerPoint presentation to show their future partners. The last laugh has to be mine.

4. How many videos of your kids do you take in a week?

These are not weekly. I take videos very randomly of them, and only when they’re doing something extraordinarily stupidly hilarious. You never know when you’ll need these videos to blackmail them into cleaning their rooms.

Now on to Other Fun Questions

1. How did becoming a Mum change your personality?

The first change that came was that I started documenting and openly talking about their potty habits and soiled diapers. What was even wrong with me?! I learnt to put them first, I learnt how to be more loving, giving, tolerant. Above all, I started appreciating my mother even more after I became a mum.

2. How do you play with your kids?

My son is sporty and always has been. I try and kick useless goals (and he always lets me score, bless him). My daughter is really very tall and enjoys basketball. They have been gifted a hoop and I sometimes join in even though I’m tempted to storm off in tears when I can’t get any balls to go through the hoop. They’re both taller than me and this is a constant source of amusement to them.

3. What is the most memorable thing about being a new Mum in Nairobi?

When I was a new Mum, Mothercare was all the rage. Oh my goodness! I’d keep buying things for my kids from there simply because I was taken by the fact that there was availability of things you only ever saw abroad. Now we get just about everything here. In hindsight, I do wish I’d have had more support as a new mum. I had my kids ‘late’ so all my friends had kids who were just about starting primary school while I was still going on about training pants and the colour of poop.

4. What do you think is the most inaccurate thing about how movies portray childbirth?

Have you EVER seen a childbirth scene in a Bollywood movie? No? Good. Make sure you never, ever subject yourself to that horror. All that screaming! The sweat, the saris the midwives used to shield the mum with, the towels. Having said that, they’ve taken the birthing experience a few notches higher and have even portrayed in Lamaze classes so maybe it’s not too bad now. One thing is for sure, all that screaming was never necessary.

5. Share something your child has recently done or said to make you laugh?

I could compile a book on this. This is a daily thing for me and I’m always laughing or trying to hide my laughter as I admonish them. Here’s an example of a conversation they had in the car on the way home from school one day,

Sapna: Mum if I was a tree what kind of a tree would I be?
Me: Ummmm…. A palm tree
Sapna: Why?
Me: Well, because palm trees are so tall, exotic and very beautiful. Just like you, my baby.
Armaan: Yes. AND ALSO BECAUSE THEY ARE FAT! HAHAHAHAHA!!!

And that’s when the fight started…

6. How did you choose your kids’ names and what do they mean?

I had both kids after a lot of difficulties and miscarriages so they’re absolutely precious to me. In Sikhs, we name our baby on the 13th day after birth. The Guru Granth Sahib (holy book) is randomly opened after prayers and the first letter you see is the letter ideally your baby’s name starts with. I can’t tell you how grateful I was to have been blessed with the exact letters that I really wanted because both
kids’ names are very special and meaningful to me.

Sapna means Dream and Armaan means Desire. Both of which have come true for me.

Share your tips with others

1. What are the top 3 kids places for fun in your neighbourhood?

I’m going with my garden on this one! Also the kids are now old enough to ride their bikes on the road in our estate so I allow them as long as they are properly kitted with helmets, reflector jackets and promise to be responsible road users. The third place exists when they’re quietly reading. That’s MY happy and fun place!

Kamal & Kids UK Trip 2012 095

2. Which activities do you regularly engage in for recreation with your family?

I’m at work all week and they’re at school, laden with homework by the time they get home. The best activity that we do together and really enjoy is going for Sunday morning walks in Karura Forest. My son takes along his bike and my daughter has many photo opportunities at the waterfall with her selfie stick. She’s going to unfriend me on Facebook for this… (I’m laughing so hard)

Your Nostalgia of the Past and Hopes for the Future

1. In what way do you hope the workplace will be different for your kids?

More opportunities for growth is what I hope for. I’d want them both to have equal opportunity pay packets and no discrimination because they’re female or male.

2. Do you think your job will exist when your kids are your age?

They say radio is dying and they’ve been saying this for years but here we are, still going strong, getting onto the digital bandwagon. Maybe it won’t be radio as we know it now but surely, communication is only getting stronger and better with each passing day.

3. What is the one thing or experience you never had that you want for your kids?

Education. I’d love to go back to study but I’ll do this after I’ve sorted my kids’ education out. Right now as a single mum it’s a bit of a struggle so my focus is on their education so that they have all the opportunities I never had.

4. And on the flipside, what is the one thing or experience you wish your child could have from your childhood that they can’t?

A father. I have the best dad in the world and sometimes I feel bad that as little kids they missed out on having a father around them. My Dad is my hero, and theirs too, so maybe it’s not that bad.

5. What is one thing you miss about your life before your kids?

Nothing really. I took every change in stride. We all evolve in one way or another when we become parents. I don’t think I miss on anything about my life before the kids.

6. What is the most annoying interview question you’ve been asked that you’re glad we didn’t?

Will you get married again to ensure your kids have a father figure? The answer is NO! If I ever get married again, it will NOT be for that reason AT ALL.Also I enjoy receiving Father’s Day treats from them so no way am I giving up on THAT!

7. In what ways is your parenting style similar to your Mother’s? In what ways is it different?

The death threats. “If you fall down and hurt yourself I will kill you!”. My brother say I sound like my mother when I tell my kids off.  I may have some of my mum’s traits in me but as a mother I’m bringing up my kids differently. Times have changed so you need to be quite switched on with what’s going on in your children’s lives. I’m more open with them and I listen to them. I also apologise to them when I’m in the wrong. I feel I’m far more communicative with my kids than my mother was with my siblings and myself.

That’s all!

Related: Real Mum Interview-Naomi’s Next Project

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