Say hello to Claire. Mum to the gorgeous Eva aged 2, single parent, Apprentice finalist, entrepreneur, businesswoman, public speaker, and ardent campaigner for young people to get involved with enterprise. A woman with incredible energy and vision, meet Claire.
How old were you when you had your baby?
“33 years old.”
What’s was your due date and was she on time?
“Due date 20th June 2012, Eva arrived 20th June 2012 – not on her own though!”
Tell us about the birth – did it go to plan?
“I suffered from preeclampsia and had four failed inductions. I was booked in for a C-section but they managed to break my waters, 11 hours later Eva arrived! I knew all my birthing options but didn’t have a plan. My thinking was ‘what will happen will happen’. I used hypnobirthing which was excellent – it was a relatively calm labour but after an hour of pushing poor Eva was stuck and I needed a forceps delivery.”
How did you choose baby’s name?
“Eva was named after my Grandma and my Mum’s maiden name is Rainbow so her name is Eva Mary Rainbow Young.”
Did you choose to find out the sex of your baby before she arrived?
“No I didn’t find but I was very tempted! As a self-confessed control freak I like to know what is happening but if felt a bit like cheating to find out. I’m glad I waited and would do the same again.”
Complete the sentence: “Right now I can’t live without… “
“My Mum! She’s a pillar of support, font of all knowledge and an amazing Grandma to Eva. I’d be lost without her.”
What were the best bits of your pregnancy?
“My scans. Wonderful – and slightly overwhelming – to see this tiny dot growing every day with a strong heartbeat.”
And the worst bits of pregnancy?
“Overall I didn’t enjoy pregnancy. You name it, I had it! I had terrible morning sickness every day for 8 months until I was placed on medication. My hormone levels were sky high and my pelvis collapsed in the first trimester. It was painful! I had terrible heartburn and in the third trimester I started to swell. I was huge! My blood pressure rocketed, hands & feet were turning dark grey (plus very swollen) and I was diagnosed with preeclampsia. But it was worth it!”
Complete the sentence: “I wish I’d known…”
“The amount of washing that I would do with a baby – it never ends!”
Tell us why you love Kiddicare
“As a busy working parent the next day delivery in a one-hour slot is a lifeline. Kiddicare sells EVERYTHING you need – such a diverse product range and the website is easy to navigate.”
Which other Inspirational Parents do you admire and why?
“JK Rowling, fellow single parent and Patron of Gingerbread charity, and Justice Williams, MBE, single parent and businesswoman. There’s still a negative connotation associated with being a single parent. It is the most challenging and most rewarding role out there and should be celebrated!
“I met many inspirational parents at Yorkshire Children of Courage awards, their tenacity – and positivity – to deal with disabilities was very humbling.
“Eva was born with a hemangioma (strawberry birthmark) which blistered and ruptured into an open wound. It was an upsetting time, she was clearly distressed in pain and needed hospital treatment. I saw parents looking after very sick babies and children, their love and care was second to none. It still makes me cry thinking about it and makes you realise how lucky you are despite what challenges are thrown in your way. Fingers crossed Eva is better now.”
What hopes, dreams and fears do you have for your little one?
“On Eva’s birth announcement in the newspaper I included a line from the song ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’. I hope dreams that you dare to dream really do come true – and that is all I wish for. I want my daughter to be happy, have aspiration to do her best, challenge herself and see no limitations. By the time that she is my age I hope that gender discrimination will be a thing of the past.”
What do you hope your baby learns from you?
“That to get anything in life you need to work hard, treat others how you wish you be treated and have a sense of fun! We dance and laugh a lot together already.”
What do you most admire your own parents for?
“For instilling a high work ethic in me; encouraging me to push myself; taking risks; not staying in my comfort zone; being non-judgmental; teaching me a sense of integrity and keeping my feet firmly on the ground!”
Did The Apprentice give you any skills you’ve used as a mum?
“Taking part in The Apprentice was honestly harder than Eva’s newborn stage! Filming the series is relentless, exhausting and you have little sleep – at least with Eva I wasn’t living with 15 strangers and being followed by cameras, then facing Lord Sugar for a grilling in the boardroom!
a) In The Apprentice I learnt to listen and as a first time Mum I’ve listened to advice from others and also listened to Eva as well as my own instinct.
b) No matter how crazy some days can be, I keep everything in perspective and think ‘well that went OK, no one has died’. Before Eva came along I was a clean freak, liked everything in order and with a small child running around my house that isn’t possible!
c) I don’t sweat the small things, I rarely get stressed – I save it up and choose my battles wisely – like I did in the boardroom!”
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