The Tale Of Lucinda Brownjohn
The dynamic Lucinda Brownjohn was born to be a mother. "There is a switch that flicks on when you have a child and never flicks back. You live your life with a different purpose, at least that's how it was for me," says the beautiful Sydney-based mother of four. "My values have become clearer, my nurturing nature is in full bloom and I appreciate the little things more," she reflects.
If you were to include her horse, which she rides once if not twice a day, she's actually a mother of five. "The horse is a fifth child, no question! Fitting it into my life is tricky, but it has many benefits for my children. They all come to the stable weekly. My daughter Camille comes most days to help feed, brush and take care of him. I like that the children have a small exposure to country life and that they see how much time I put into a sport in order to be good at it. My eldest son made spreadsheets for my scores and tracks my improvement. There is a lot of extra planning required to make it work with the family and my husband has had to learn to cope with a demanding sport that is very alien to him. State Championships or National Championships require me to compete for four days in a row, but because we live in Sydney I am only an hour from the major competition venue in the country. The sport is unlike many others in that, as an amateur, I compete regularly against the best in the country Olympians or potential Olympians and the support from these people is amazing."
Four young children (Zach, 8, Camille, 6, Josh, 4 and Imogen, 2) and a horse: describing Brownjohn as busy is an understatement. "I was always a good planner and list maker but now it's almost military," she says, laughing. How does she make it work? "I have an au pair and a cleaner. The au pair mostly allows me to ride and collect four children from four different places in the afternoon and the cleaner allows me to stay sane. Plus my mother flies in on request, from Adelaide, whenever I need extra help or we travel without the children. I am so lucky!".
Brownjohn previously worked in management consultancy for an investment bank, but after her firstborn Zach arrived, she made the decision to become a stay-at-home mother. "When Zach arrived all I wanted to do was look after him and have more children. There is a stigma that goes with being a stay at home mother, but I learnt to ignore that and truly, it's a privilege and I am lucky that I can choose what I prefer to do. Now I look for something else in my life and riding my horse fills that void."
"Horse riding has always been a passion. I remember in school art classes I always drew horses, I read every pony book that was in print and I pestered my Mum for riding lessons for years," she says. "I eventually got the lessons and the pony and I think it was a great precursor for motherhood. I learnt daily responsibility from the age of eight for another living being and I thrived on it. I only got to ride on weekends when I was at school so my dream was to have my own horse and ride every day. I am grateful and amazed that this is now the case."
Lucinda's little list of loves:
My Mum, my sister and my girlfriends.
White things: white roses, white chocolate, white wine, white dresses.
My horses, their velvet muzzles, fat bottoms and quirky personalities.
My kids singing in the car at school drop off: I always know the top chart hits.
Love letters from Camille: I love you bcos you R pritty and bcos you smell nise.
Watching my daughters' pick flowers in our garden while my sons are playing wild rugby tackle on the lawn.
My new custom riding boots.
Sex And The City reruns.
Olivia Popes wardrobe and Harvey Specter.
The bronze ballerina statue my husband gave me. It's a perfect example of art creating joy: every time I look at it, I love it.
An early morning ride around Centennial Park.
Gypsy Water perfume.
Reading. I always read.
Josh getting dressed in the morning: T-shirt, shorts, underpants on backwards and shoes on wrong feet. Every day.
Zach singing and playing the guitar... it makes me cry with pride.
Imogen and her cute little girl chat: Wook Mummy! Cows! (at three Dalmatians)
My Jennifer Fisher personalised necklace.
The kookaburras who sit on my balcony most days.
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