The most important thing Henny Vere Nicoll has learned about motherhood is self-acceptance

When my son celebrates his second birthday in a couple of months, I won’t be making his cake. This is a personal breakthrough. 

In the five years I have been a mother, I have lost a lot of sleep over birthday cakes. When my first child, our daughter, turned one I was determined to make her the perfect cake. I put aside the fact I don’t really enjoy baking and stayed up late into the night ordering specialist cake decorating equipment and watching tutorials on YouTube.

In the end, I made three cakes, none of which lived up to the sponge and fondant master creations I had been aiming for. My daughter didn’t notice (I have the photo of her in a party hat with jam on her face to prove it) but as we helped her blow out her candles, all I could think was I had messed up her first ever birthday cake. 

As a new mother, there were so many moments like this. Moments when I felt I was falling short.