So here’s what I thought about motherhood. It’s a right. Something that comes easily and freely to all us girls. When you want to, you can bring a tiny blessing into the world, just pop it on out like ordering from a vending machine.
Here’s what else I thought about motherhood. It’s easy. Piece of piss. You have a kid, and maybe it hurts a bit but you’ll get over it. It’s easy ain’t it? I mean they eat, sleep and shit…what could be so hard about that? Yeeesh girl, you got your head on back to front.
What a dickhead. Here’s what I’ve learnt over the past decade. What I thought to be true and what actually is are two such extreme polar opposites they are on the other side of the globe from each other.
I was a complacent bitch, I’ll give you that. Thinking it’s all a walk in the park, I’m slightly ashamed to admit I was one of those who rather nonchalantly, maybe even belligerently, quaffed about how easily I fell pregnant. And then I didn’t.
I would quite happily blab to anyone who listened about how perfect my baby boy was, he actually did just eat, sleep, shit and giggle. Not a peep, well hardly ever. He was like clockwork, textbook easy baby, smiling and laughing his way through his first five years of life. And then I had a difficult one.
Now I look back on my ignorance and should swiftly bitch slap myself while shaking my finger and telling me never again to be so damn cocky.
Kissing goodbye the last days of my forty-second year on this here earth place this week, I don’t think I’ve ever been more reflective.
Now I’m Mum to two beautiful babies. There once was a time I never thought that possible.
I’ve spent days and weeks this year perilously close to the edge, had every ounce of my human, female, mothering instinct tested to its abso-fucken-lute limit. I’ve drawn on every bit of my inner strength to pull myself through all the while doubting my every move, decision, thought…and often questioning if I’m even worthy of motherhood itself.
Sleep deprivation. It’s the biggest motherfucking syphon of sanity you could ever imagine.
The first time it was easy. It really was.
The second…not so much.
I’ve been scared as all fuck. Not knowing, and still not certain if I’m doing it right. Feeling a bit useless, a bit angry (okay a lot) that sleep or even time is no longer a luxury afforded to my daily life. Not wanting to be alone because I wasn’t sure if I could be, and at times being so scared of my baby, my second time motherhood, my inability to see rationally or let anyone else help, and most of all…scared of myself.
I’d been Locked inside a world of doubt and hopelessness where suddenly you find yourself Owner of no fewer than 14 baby help books you said you’d never buy. Subscriber to forty-six online baby sleep guides, thirty-two different baby sleep apps that are like a form of slow painful torture to your ears (who even knew what white noise was?) but mothers nod knowingly at you in the mall as you walk by, your iPod screaming out static from the pram. And buyer of a gazzillion and two different baby wraps, sleeping bags and talking owls (I know what the actual fuck, right?!)
Whatever gets you through, girl.
I said I’d never use a dummy, can’t stand the bloody things. And then I did.
Buuuuut like they say, the fog lifts and it does get easier. Motherhood is tough as all get out. But time does make it easier. Well that and solids. No two babies are the same as pathetically cliche as that is and as much as I once would’ve scoffed loudly while swallowing a laugh…it is true. You forget how much you’ll miss the simple things in life like reading the paper in your undies on a Sunday morning. Or being able to take a shit in peace. Or showering for longer than 13 and a half seconds. Oh how you miss those goddamn things.
And then your tiny miracle learns to dance to your funny singing…and her wee face lights up like a million stars when she sees you…and her giggle is the sound of your heart winning lotto and she snuggles into your chin and falls asleep on you clinging closely to your soul. And you find yourself breathing in her smell so deep you want it to last forever because you know soon enough she’ll be running and then she’ll be starting school and then in a hot bloody second, she’ll be a teenager wanting to borrow your shoes and you’ll miss these days like crazy.
And you hear yourself say, yes motherhood it’s the greatest gift a girl could ever get. Every last bit of it is worth it a million gazillion times over. Sometimes it’s just not quite as easy as you remembered it. But remember where you were a year ago, two or three even. Remember how empty you felt. How much you both yearned for her to be in this world. Remember How many people you know now in your well-trodden shoes still hoping and praying for their own miracle trying every trick they possibly can.
No matter what stage, it’s hard and it’s okay to say that. We are just human. We are just trying to do the best we can. We are sometimes clawing on to the edge of survival but the sun’ll come out tomorrow. Just remember that. And surround yourself with the most precious village who you don’t know what you’d do without.
Lov ‘n hugs from an almost birthday girl and finally, mum-of-two most precious humans, and lover of the most incredibly patient, kind and loving Vet, Lady Mama G xoxo