Day 1825 of waiting…

Fuck I love it when people have opinions. Especially ill-informed ones. I happened upon one the other week while recovering from an umpteenth surgery to fix my ever depleting shitful fertility which has now left me with three handy little holes in my abdomen – should they be required for three point-chain accessory at any stage. Unfortunately I’m the girl who tends to vomit like the kid from Poltergeist on waking from a GA which is why the anesthetist should’ve remembered to give me some of that really good shit to stop me hurling ma’ guts up every five minutes. Not only was I discharged clutching my little white fold-up vom-filled plastic sleeve like Queenie’s handbag but for the following 18 hours, could. not. even. hold. down. water. Fun times specially coupled with having your insides flipped around, flushed, stripped out and cut away.

But I digress…our focus here was on a thread I found (between my cursory chucks) on one of the (possibly far too many) fertility groups I follow where a bolshy young upstart who couldn’t have been more than 22, took it upon herself to declare to its followers they should all be adopting and fostering, fertility and IVF is not a right, that they needn’t be defined by motherhood, nor should they carelessly be adding to an overcrowded population by haphazardly injecting their wombs with countless embryos they’ve ‘bought’. Blessed be the thoughts of the ignorant. Whaaaat? Girl, you be a brave lil poptart. Floods of  fury erupted in the replies as they started to spread like a western bushfire threatening to put her right back in the little glass house she crawled out from. These are women you do not fuck with.

I’m sure there are plenty who might themselves wonder why the fuck someone like me would expose her body, mind and every inch of her soul into the abyss of fertility treatment…lemme shine a little light. While adoption would certainly be an option – though a highly unviable one given the amount of children adopted in Australia each year falls below 200, a 75% decrease over the past 25 years – there are two things preventing me from doing this. One is the law (incredulously) states there must not be more than a 39-year age gap between mother and baby. Oops that’s me out, sista. The second reason why I can’t just ‘go and adopt myself a kid like you see in the gossip mags’ is you cannot be undertaking fertility treatment and also actively pursuing adoption. Sorry kiddo but it’s one or the other. And sadly for us, bringing home a baby in a muslin sling after a visit to Cambodia, Malawe or Thailand certainly doesn’t work quite the way you might think. Not unless your name rhymes with Pangelina Solie.

You name it, I’ve got it, honey. Low egg count, low egg quality, endometriosis, blocked pipes, high NK cells, and coupled with motility issues, we are basically what you’d call well, shall we say completely fucked fertility-wise. We need all the help god – and Dr Babies – can send. Which is why I went in for another laparoscopy to remove the creepy noxious weed endo spreading its nasty self across my uterus, as well as a hysteroscopy, curette and flushout of the pipes – a full panelbeating before our last-ditch attempt at our final pair of frosties who are waiting ever so patiently in the freezer to meet their mama n’ daddy.

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Sadly, nothing is as simple as a choice when it comes to fertility. Those of us on this ride have already been through every possible tangent you could think of. Including sleeping with a fertility stone blessed by the ancient monks of Nepal wedged under my mattress. And that’s exactly why opinions like why someone would undertake fertility treatment in the first place burns like a motherfuckering hot poker. It isn’t because we ‘put other things first’, nor is it because we’d like to ‘plan when our baby comes’ like an online shopping order. IVF is an absolute last resort for anyone. Full. Fucking. Stop. It isn’t a process any of us wish to go through.

Having now been a card-carrying member of the infertiles for over 1825 tedious ass-shitting days, having spent hundreds of thousands of dollars trying every different kind of way a hundred times over to make my body go back to how it was, having lost all hope for what keeps the very evolution of the world going. Losing our only glimmer of hope at just 7.5 weeks. And then being helpless as our dreams get sucked away in a vacuum of pain. Having my body and my very existence overpowered by 3462 needles, fucked up levels of hormones and steroids pumped into my body and emotions I didn’t even imagine possible. Thirteen attempts on a high-speed rollercoaster with no breaks. Dealing with the enormity of loss upon loss upon loss upon loss. And quietly yet reluctantly pocketing a grief no one else unless they’ve been there themselves, could ever begin to comprehend.

Nope you have absolutely no idea which is exactly why my reply to what you think girls like me should be doing didn’t come in the form of venom – though what you wrote infuriated the living shit out of me. It is merely a hope if and when you reach the crossroads of motherhood in years to come…you not be afflicted by the absolute curse that is infertility. It is not a fucking choice. It is not an option. It is our only hope. And one that keeps on being taken time after time. Sucking you in with a tiny bit more only to snatch it back off you in a hit and run two weeks later.

Every month of my life over the past five years has been methodically split into two week blocks – the first spent dreaming of implantation ‘twitches’ and possible onset of nausea. The second waiting for the day to come when we can start all over again. I literally live in fortnightly episodes that even if I wanted to, I can’t escape from. No lovie, it ain’t no way to live and yes, yes, you’re right I don’t need to be defined by motherhood but if you have a want for something so deeply embedded in your heart…if you’ve so often dreamed of your little soul, smelled him even, seen her giggle. Fought so hard to keep yourself from falling into the fucking pit of depression that keeps on appearing at your feet at the end of each month. If you’ve ever questioned what the fuck you did in a past life to keep getting dealt so much disappointment…maybe you might understand.

Nothing about IVF is a choice. You get all those taken off you the minute you find out you can’t do things yourself anymore.

Maybe find someone else to pick on…cos we sure as fuck do enough of that to ourselves…love n’ hopeful hugs to all ma’ girls out there who know what 264 hours feels like, Lady MamaG xox

Wtf did I ever do before…?

Thirteen mother’s days. No actually more like 4745 of them. Before I turned into a master finder of all things lost. Before I turned into a chef, a knower of all things Wiggles, a Lego master builder and nerf bullet dodger. Before I became a Viewer specialist of Nemo, then Cars, then Toy Story…all the way to Madagascar and beyond. 

Before I turned doctor, nurse, diet expert and teacher. Before I turned insomniac and stealth listener. Before I turned psychologist and maker of all things right. Before I turned cycling expert, advanced transformer repairer and costume designer. 

Before I turned storyteller, imagination consultant and mindful creativity enthusiast. Before I turned cross country marathon running spectator guide, goal specialist and singular cheerleading squad…before I turned NBL league researcher, Jacque Cousteau level oceanologist and mechanical expert to rival a Top Gear producer. Before I heard my name called three hundred gazillion and forty two times a day…before all of that plus a shit tonne more…what did I do? No, honestly what. The. Fuck. Did. I do?

Are you nodding your head knowingly? Yeah cos Today might be Mother’s Day butas mums be well aware, so is every other day. 

Before I knew my name would become the second most used word in the English language I might have relished the time I could take a pee in peace without having to find a missing item of school uniform at sparrow’s fart on a weekday morning. I might very well have enjoyed eating whatever I wanted at a time closer to midnight than mid afternoon. I could even have skipped round the supermarket flinging things in my trolley like tofu, anchovies, Camembert and fois grad with gay abandon laughing to myself at my freedom of food choices. Not even a what is that to be heard. I might have slept acrossways in my bed kicking left and right whenever I felt like it. And taking all the pillows. 

Yep. Probably. I could have done all those things. And more. I really don’t know. Because I don’t remember. Who of us ever could? My life before I got this job all but deleted from my memory files…the least paid, most demanding, most heartbreaking, most terrifying, at times even frustrating… yet utterly most rewarding and prideful gig a girl could ever ask for. I have no idea. Time before motherhood has stood still, eclipsed by the enormity of the role I now hold so dear and have done my best to keep these past thirteen years. 

Dunno if I’m good at it. That’s the thing with this job there ain’t no handbook, no meeting with the board to discuss your progress just a blindfold and a hand grenade then you’re set off into the mummyhood wilderness. All alone, carefully negotiating the track so as not to detonate. 

I’m pretty sure I was told it’d get easier but I think they were full of shit. Or they’d never heard of teenagers. Just like when they said the sleep loss would eventually make way for sleep ins. There are some in our household copping a lazy Sunday morning only trouble is it’s not this someone. Even when the lights go out my mind is up late working in the moonlight, worrying, worrying.  

Having now spent a good half a decade trying to convince my body it really truly does have the capability to produce another of these somewhat demanding, yet a whole lot incredible miracles I wouldn’t trade a single second of it. Not a one. Every day has brought a little bit more sunshine into our world I never thought possible. From the times I’d pick up a giggling toddler from his cot to hugs that now squeeze my shoulders in tight…to being told I’m the best mum in the world is praise enough. Even if it is before his request for a fourteenth set of new kicks. 

Just to be given the chance to do it all over again even just once would make my heart even more full than it already is. And oh please oh please Genie, today more than any other I’m asking this one wish…

I’m totally Celebrating the mini human I part created and maybe just one day real soon, might be given another super creature to cherish and you betcha little ass I’m chuffed. Happy Mums Day to the already’s, the passed over’s and the hope-to-be Mama’s out there. Lov’n’hugs always, Lady Mama G xoxo

If you despise holiday braggers, look away now…

I warn you beforehand I can’t help it but I’m gonna be one of those fuckwits who blats on about how damn amazing her holiday is, while the rest of you mere mortals wipe snot from your face slothing it, lost in a haze of soup steam, thick wooly socks and far too many layers of grey…as I sit here writing this lounging on the edge of a cliff somewhere on an island, waves crashing below me while I adjust my bikini out of my butt crack and my waiter, and friend for the day, with a huge big smile brings me a concoction of I don’t know what but it’s pink, fizzy and has flowers dangling from it. Ahh the bliss. Didn’t hate me before? You sure as shit do now. But wank on I shall for this holiday is healing all in itself. 

Having come in from what could only be described as a massage delivered by the gods themselves, hot stones have slowly worked out the months of toxins and stress that’ve been dwelling in my system for far too long. The temperature sits somewhere between 28-31 I really don’t know the precise ambient degree because my ability to convert Fahrenheit to C is about as good as pounds to kilo’s – for the love of god can we not share a common fucken measuring system?!

Today’s activities, much like yesterday’s and likely similar to tomorrow’s, will include immersing myself in the Pacific Ocean, eating far too many taro chips (that shit be so good) sampling the prettiest drinks from the cocktail menu, throwing back a lemongrass beer in between  (medicinal purposes of course) eating my way through an entire menu and afternoon tanelaxation seminars before I head back to the mainland for a little economy research in Neiman Marcus. Yeah, that shit be good. 

As I bake uneven tan lines into my skin due to the fact there’s signs requesting you keep your regions covered at all times (nah not really but there’s way too much public ruining my peaceful to completely relax, tits n’all) my boys are off on a fishing trip that cost more than our entire week’s hotel bill but the 13 y o insisted, nay begged, nay pestered the living daylights out of us to go on.

Nothing will dampen the kid’s spirits or his intentions to hook a giant Mahi mahi even though the weather is a little blustery. The Vet, god bless him, who’s been referred to almost daily by my late husband’s surname (because I booked it and a name change once was enough for me…lay off, doesn’t mean I love him any less but I’ve grown too attached to this one to let it go) plus it’s easier to spell, doesn’t blink an eyelid…has packed up our boy and headed off on their first international fishing trip. Given the conditions AND the fact The Vet sees fishing a bit like I do bikini waxing – a necessary but painful thing you have to do – because god love him he sees little point in uneccessarily killing fish. Animal lover through and through. 

Yeah I thought I was an animal lover too before I met him. But honest to god once you’ve seen what goes on in his every day life, once you’ve watched your staff spend an hour trying mercilessly to remove a deceased pup from a mother the owner ‘didn’t even know was pregnant’ yet had been painfully labouring for over 24 hours, to then be told the by the owner to euthanise their one-year-dog and you have no option but to pay for it, that’s when you know you’re an animal lover. When you can’t bare to see them in pain day in, day out. I so often wonder how he gets all the grief out day after day. It must seep deep deep under his skin…

But fishing they are. Because that’s who he is. Out all day while I sit here tanning my butt cheeks, somewhat unevenly. There’s every possibility he would have had his ear entirely chewed off by the time they return wary and sunburnt, telling tales of how they ‘nearly snagged the biggest fish you’ve ever seen’…our 13 y o has little time to come up for air when there’s fishing stories to be told and every detail – minute as it may be – must be told. At length. Sometimes twice. Especially if he thinks you might not have been listening. 

I love that the two of them are off without me. Not cos I don’t share their love, or lack the thereof of fishing (no, wipe that actually I’d rather tear my toenails off) but because I love them spending time together, generally shooting the shit and being lads. We’ve now reached that point where my baby, he don’t wanna share his thoughts with me no more. He insists it’s a boys thing. And I’m cool with that. Now it’s time for The Vet to take the wheel and the boy couldn’t be under better guidance, he’s way calmer, practical and less likely to lose his shit than I am anyway. 

The three if us be happy lil clams in the sunshine. I really must wank on about how amazing this holiday shit is because we get to do it but once a year, if we’re lucky. The fact his adoring clients think the world may end if he’s away any longer means short’n’sweet with barely enough time to unpack your 432 bikinis before it’s time to rinse the sand out of your  nether regions and head for the hills. Back to work, to reality, to surgery, to strapping a giant fucking jet pack of brave to my back and getting ready to face it all again. 

Perhaps this dose of healing will do us all a bit of good. 

Ps: I’ll keep you posted on the day’s catch…so we can all share in the delight. The long, long, long delight…

Mahalo from the wanky-and-damn-proud-of-it Lady MamaG on tour xoxo

Family…

Today was meant to be transfer day. Two of our last little frosties, our hopefuls, our last shot, out of the freezer, through the tube of a catheter and straight into the baby caravan, romantic as it sounds and all. But, and it seems as though there’s a shit tonne of fucking but’s these days (and not of the cute squishy baby kind either) we won’t be.

No. Sorry, your defective self has once again proven to be unripe, Lady Mama G. Not ready. Not working right. So we’ve abandoned ship, jumped overboard mid-cycle and told the Captain to take the wheel before it hits the whopper of yet another disappointment. Another failure.

The reason, besides many, is that bitchface endo has reared her rather ugly head again. Interfering with not just any chance of our cycle working but giving the ever delightful side affect of making my gut swell up to the stage of a four-month pregnancy with a tiny knife-wielding ninja chopping away at my insides…which would be super cool if there were a lil peanut (less the ninja swords) hatching inside but there isn’t. And that just makes life shitful with the only reprieve to be found in the form of hot wheatie bags and curling up in the foetal position with a stash of rocky road (coincidentally, which features high on the list of must-not-haves when it comes to endometriosis but come on, fuck me solid, I can NOT do life without chocolate. It is my drug of choice).

I’m so glad we didn’t chance our lil’ Hugo & Evie and even made sure to call the lab this morning to triple check they didn’t start to defrost our embryos for no reason leaving us with nothing. Fortunately the scientist on the phone didn’t think I was an obsessive crazy nutbag and said it was a good idea to double check because a message with the office lady could easily get mislaid, yes you’re very right…okay maybe she thought I was a little bit OCD. No chances please.

I meet with Dr Babies to shoot the shit about the record number of embryo transfers done on one patient but mostly to find a solution. I already know what he’s going to say so I suggest it. ‘Another Laproscopy?’ I ask gingerly as though ordering another glass of French Rose. I promised myself no more going under. No more. My inner self is bitch-slapping me for even coming up with such nonsense but there is sweet fuck all other choice, Dorothy. Key hole surgery for the second time in five years to cut away all the nasty seaweed like growths aggressively attaching themselves to my innards really is the only option. General anesthetic number 10 it is…and I be booked in for a couple of weeks’ time.

Really and truly, this shit is starting to take it’s toll. The disappointment. The fact I’ve spent my entire marriage like this. What if? This time it’ll work. Let’s try this. How about this. Maybe this. It’ll work. It really will. Maybe this time. It’s okay. Keep going. One actual loss and 12 other attempts that didn’t even get as far as a loss. Two surgeries. Six hundred and eighty two mother fucking needles…can’t say we haven’t thrown every goddamn thing we can at this. And still it’s a maybe. Always a maybe. Ten per cent, fifty per cent, seventy-five even. But I’ve had a baby BEFORE fuck it all to hell, it has to work. Infertility weave your magic on my almost-gone-sanity.

I did find the sweetest thing the 13 y o wrote five years ago (thanks FB reposts) the day we were married. It’s called My Hero and a week before the wedding I asked him to write a little poem he could read out about what the day, and the fact The Vet was becoming his family, really meant to him. When he came up with was quite simply precious. When he read those words of pride, of worship, of how their unconditional bond exists because of love…I couldn’t have ever comprehended how much it meant to him, this becoming a family. He literally never left The Vet’s side…insisted we place a chair for him right between the groomsmen – where it turns out, he belonged.

The following day, we met in the hotel restaurant for breakfast and the then-eight-year-old who was staying with his Nan and Pop was on a happy high. It wasn’t just me and The Vet, it was the three of us, now. From when he skipped me down the aisle to reading out the most beautiful words only a tiny mind full of love could create. You couldn’t wipe the smile off any of our faces…but when we told him it would be just the two of us going on honeymoon…the kid lost it. Tears like I’ve never seen. Highs crashing down. He couldn’t understand why he wasn’t coming with us, it was our day, he whimpered. ‘But I have to come, please I don’t want to leave you…I want to come too.’ Heart. Broken. I had to leave him behind in the breakfast hall, walk away blinking back my own tears and I know it only took a few minutes for him to feel better once we’d gone…but the lesson was love, not just blood, is what heals us, keeps us together, makes us family, keeps the sides from splitting.

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Our family is made up of a whole lot of people, not just our relatives and not just the people still here on earth. He is lucky, I am lucky we have The Vet and five years as our little family even though it mightn’t have grown quite the way we wanted it to…we are still a family.

And shit, I wouldn’t change it for quids…

Love n’ hugs, Lady MamaG xox

Waiting…watching the clock 

There are 15,840 minutes in eleven days. I should know, I have counted every single fucken one of them.

This torturous wait has kept me holed up in my head, feeling each little twinge. Worrying over every teeny cramp. Angry. Sad. A little bit happy. No angry again. I’m not sure which one of the little fuckers is to blame – progesterone, progynova or prednisone – maybe it’s all three but they can each and every one of them, together with my hormones, bugger off and stop fucking with my head already.

A bit over 11 days ago was when our little journey of hope began. The 13th round. Lucky 13, I’m not sure how many rounds Muhhamad Ali went through in his world title fight but it’s starting to feel a bit as though I’m reliving his bout blow-by-blow. Once my intralipids are done I skip upstairs (yes literally, this is our ‘one’ it’s soooo gonna work this time happy happy joy joy) where Dr Babies is waiting for me in theatre. I lay back and slip my ankles into the stirrups and the scientist comes to tell me Hugo or Evie has indeed thawed beautifully and is waiting for his new lil home. Yesssss, lil embie, I have everything made up for you in there and even a little night light so you’re not afraid of the dark.

The catheter goes up you know where (or if you’d prefer not to, look away now) and Dr Babies guides it in using the ultrasound screen. Once he’s found the perfect hidey spot inside my uterus, he radios in for the scientist who appears from the lab holding the tube with our teeny incy lil embryo (smaller than a pinhead) inside and has already grown to a five-day-old blastocyst. She hands it over and Dr Babies carefully places him inside the catheter. Then, a bit like a pea shooter, embie is hurtled up through the catheter and comes up on the screen as the teensiest weeny white light in my baby caravan. Just like a star in the bare night sky. Oh I’m so wishing on you teeny star, wishing with all my might.

A few seconds later The scientist radios through to say the tube is empty. ‘All clear,’ she says. And we have liftoff, captain. One little embie safely onboard.

I lie back on the bed and insist on resting up for twenty minutes, even though I don’t really need to. You know, just to be sure. I’m not risking anything this time. So good. My mind’s already starting to high-five itself.

That’s the easy bit done and dusted. Yes, even the part where I have a giant cannula hanging from my arm for four hours. That ain’t nothin compared to what lies ahead.

Two weeks, or just shy of, hoping for a miracle…

My friend works out that IF it takes, this little miracle will arrive on the 13-year-old’s birthday. Oh what a double whammy if that’s not a sign more certain than a weeping Christ statue, I don’t know what is.

Softest baby blue with taupe accents for a Hugo nursery, dusky pink with soft French grey for an Evie.

Everyone is so excited. Messages flood in from our beautiful friends and family of hope and wonder, they make me tear up just a little bit. They all want this to work. We all want it to work. So so much riding on this lil’ frosty.

In two days it’ll be me and The Vet’s fifth wedding anniversary…and I couldn’t ask for a more precious teeny gift for him. The bloke who has truly kept me together like dried PVA glue these past five years. I can almost see our teeny Bub, giggling his same infectious cheeky laugh that makes me smile even when I feel like shit.

anniversary1Even the 13 y o thinks he has a brother in waiting and insists it will be the best baller, like, ever. 

The end of the road. Our time is finally here. Isn’t it? I mean it’s worked hasn’t it? Headaches, cramps, backache they’re all pregnancy symptoms too right? We have a super embryo in there, our lil Hugo, holding on for dear life digging his little ice pick into the wall on my ueterus…

Hope starts to slip from my grip. An emptiness begins to creep over me…. I’ll do two pee tests, praying like fuck for a second red line. As the liquid slips up the screen, filling the first window, it fails to eventuate into the second. And like that, my heart drops to the floor. Fuck it all to hell I can’t deal with this anymore. No. More. Pain. No. More. Loss. Please whoever higher being it is up there driving this crazy bus of disappointment, I want to get the fuck off.

My clinic says I’ll still have to do my blood tests even though I know there is sweet fuck all point to them. They don’t even call with the results.  No need. BFN. Bloody Fucken Nothing.

It would seem there was nothing lucky about 13 at all. Nothing…

Bye bye embie No. 13…we miss you already as you join the twelve other little hopefuls who just weren’t meant to be…

I don’t want to tell anyone. I’m so scared of disappointing them all. The Vet. My Angel. The boy. Our friends. Our family. So much hope. So much love. So much heartache.

After attempting to put my heart back together today, it’s time to pick myself up and get back in the saddle for the next round. Tomorrow I’ll go in for a endometrial scratching and a uterus biopsy (which clearly should be on all Spa Retreat menus) and we’ll start a natural round. No drugs this time. And I’m reminded how lucky I am. I still breathe. My boy is safe and happy. My Vet is the most beautiful human on the planet and despite the fact I sometimes wake screaming in the night that someone’s trying to kill me, he still loves the hell outta this girl.  And that’ll do me. Lov’n’ hugs from a slightly wounded Lady MamaG xox

Wake me up in two weeks…

My veins are completely non compliant. Which is not helpful when you have a nurse trying to insert a cannula the size of a slurpie straw into your somewhat grey and dull looking inner elbow. Did I mention I fucking hate needles?

My lovely Nurse, who recognises me from the somewhat unfortunate fact I’ve become a regular at her hospital, beams a big smile at me. ‘You’re back,’ she says. ‘I thought you weren’t going to do anymore,’ we catch up here so often we’re on a first name basis – except we don’t know each others actual names. Love and darl will do fine. 

I tell her I’ve been blessed with some donor eggs from an incredibly generous friend and am hopeful of a transfer this afternoon. ‘Oh how fantastic,’ she says. ‘Well this will be the last time we see you then,’. I smile and blink away tears, they come far too easily these days. Emotions on hiked up overload. Fucken hormones. 

Patients with eye patches start filling up the recovery room. No other ladies with failing ovaries to share my battlefield story with today. I may be forced to become a Days of our Lives devotee instead. 

After taking my blood pressure, the Nurse tries to stick me with the cannula but my veins say no. ‘Shit, sorry love, I know that hurts. Damn I can’t get it to feed back through, sorry we’ll have to get the doctor.’ I wince and look away. Fuck I hate needles. Oh the pain, it’s real alright. She tries to distract me with tales of our homeland. ‘I’m off back for Easter,’ she tells me, if her visit to a spot where my family has a place. ‘Can’t beat those beautiful Kiwi beaches,’ she adds, small-talking through the pain. No you can’t but my arm’s now bleeding like a fucking bastard. 

She pulls out the unsuccessful giant sized cannula and my toes curl up inside my shoes. Shit it’s hot in here I tell her. And not because I’m feeling a bit of Nelly inspiration, I expect the ridiculous amount of hormones being orally ingested into my system over the past month contribute to the claminess. I choke back the urge to empty my guts all over her pink crocs and the lino floor. She goes to find the doctor, see if he can do a better job. 

Between surgeries, Dr Babies comes to the rescue and has another shot, by which point my veins are meeting to decide if they’ll completely disband from my body altogether. He digs around a little and finally gets a feed through. Stupid ass veins. 

The Nurse hooks up the intralipid fluid and so begins the start of a day that, for the past two weeks, I’ve been both dreading and anxiously awaiting. 

As the gooey white substance begins its crawl into my body at the rate of 10mls per minute, upstairs there’s a teeny little Hugo or Evie being taken out of the freezer getting prepared for this afternoon’s transfer. I don’t know if it’ll defrost. I don’t know if it’ll take. I don’t know what the days and weeks will hold for us, us three, my beautiful family…I don’t know if my uterus will hold this tiny miracle, if my body can do what it’s meant to…all I know is fear. 

I want to skip this bit altogether. Go straight to the end of my two week wait. Sleep for a fortnight and then get up and know it’s all worked. Our dreams have come true. If only it were that easy…but fuck it all to hell, infertility is anything but…lov n’hugs from a hopelessly hopeful Lady MamaG xox

It’s time we stopped mummy bashing…

I was once told by a former friend who for the purpose of this post we’ll name Mrs Nasty, I was a bad mum because I took my six-month-old shopping on a somewhat regular basis. Call child services on me if you must. The same woman would also berate almost everything I did as a new mum. She’d pick on what I fed him – which for a large part of his toddler years consisted of lamb cutlets, potato pom poms and peas – it was quite literally all he would eat. She told me I must enrol him in some idiotic form of baby gymnastics that involved me crawling around like some fuckstick on a rubber floor mat (sorry to those who love this shit, but it just wasn’t for me) and god forbid I let him watch anything on a screen that wasn’t labelled Baby Mozart.

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This toddler survived his many shopping jaunts with his mother, unscathed…

This wasn’t helpful. It’s hard enough when you’re a new mum and unsure if you’ve got this gig sussed let alone when someone tells you you’re not doing it right. Unless you are abusing your child, those words are not necessary. I’m not quite certain if Mother Theresa herself named this woman the patron saint of motherhood, or she just assumed the role of her own volition but it never left me. Unlike Mrs Patron Saint (or is that Patronising Saint) of mums, we didn’t have any family living here so my options of shopping alone were not a luxury afforded to me on a regular basis, which meant abusively as it may have been, he was packed up in the stroller and wheeled around the shops charming every assistant who encountered the little blonde nugget of cuteness most weeks. I was merely teaching him young that charm will get you anywhere…

Which brings me to my entire point of this conversation. Whose right is it to tell a parent, and especially a mother – as we seem to be the only ones galloping on our high horses and stabbing each other with lances any time one of our own slips from the highly established ‘perfect standards’ of motherhood – if she is doing the best thing for her kid or not?

I do not give one fuck if you think my kid’s lunchbox is not packed healthily enough because it contains chips or donuts or chocolate. I don’t care either, if you think my baby should sleep in its bed for every single nap time. He turned out pretty damn good so far, and in fact is the heaviest sleeper ever known to humankind, would sleep so long, I’d have to wake him. There isn’t a mum in the world who doesn’t, at some time doubt if she’s getting it right and you high almighties flinging your mud ain’t going to help that one iota.

I’m fairly certain the same Mummy Nazi think sending a five-year-old across the Tasman, alone if you could even believe it, doesn’t fit their mould of ‘perfection’ either. The same high Priestesses who only ever feed their kids dehydrated kale crisps as a treat and sing lullabies in fourteen different languages, while simultaneously flicking alphabet flash cards into their tiny subconscious minds as they sleep would never do such a thing. It’s not your business what I do with my child, so long as they are healthy, well-rounded tiny people with good hearts and kind natures that’s all that matters to me and all that should matter to anyone else.

Intimidating other mums on what you think they should do with their kids, unless it’s risking their lives, really shouldn’t be a competitive sport. But it is. Last week, Aussie model Rachael Finch copped a bagging on social media because holy fuck if you can beleive it, she takes her toddler to her mum’s every now and then for a weekend so Rach and her hubby get a bit of of alone time together. What’s wrong with wanting to keep her marriage healthy? What’s wrong with her daughter spending time with her grandparents? And most of all whose fucking business is it what she does? The Insta Mummy Nazi thought it was time to teach the gorgeous model a thing or two about responsible parenting, they reckoned. She was clearly abandoning her role as a mum. She must be a martyr, they demanded and spend every living second with her toddler watching her every move in awe. No. Actually not your business. Piss off to your perfect pigeon hole and let her do her own mothering. And while you’re at it, shut your damn traps.

Same thing happened to Carrie Bickmore who recently revealed she sends her kid to school on his own. He’s nine and he walks to school. I’m pretty sure after my second day of school, I walked or biked – and sometimes through puddles of actual ice – on my own every day after that. I was five. Sometimes it was even dark. There were no mobile phones to check in with mum. Lord knows how it happened but I survived. It was enough to send the High Priestesses of Motherhood Perfection into high alert and they viciously  spat their venom at Carrie that under no circumstance should this occur and how could she not even call the school to check if he arrived. What’s that noise you hear…? Helicopter blades overhead. Yes, I believe so. The world is no more dangerous now than it was in the ’80s. We are just more afraid. And it’s wanker keyboard warriors who make us that way.

No one is more judgemental on other mums than mums themselves. We shouldn’t be. We really mustn’t. Who needs to subscribe to ‘raising the perfect child’ with books, eseminars and entire facebook groups devoted to attempting to make our kids robotic stepford versions of kids. Is it my business or yours that some mums find a bit of freedom hidden in a glass of much-earned Chardy at the end of an evening when she finally gets her berren under control? Is it up to us to say what another woman lets her kid eat, what time they put their toddler to sleep or if her abs are visible or not six weeks post-partum? I for one could not find my abs for a good nine to 12 months after the day my son came into our world, and I was quite happy about it. But if another mum’s goal is to rinse the washing on her lower abdomen so fucking be it.

The best thing one of my friends ever told me was, ‘if it works for your baby, that’s the best way.’ I still to this day, ask her for advice. And she gives bloody good stuff back.

There are mothers out there doing the best they flaming well can, on a daily basis. Sometimes they are only just coping. Days can stretch out longer than months. Fear mongering only makes us doubt ourselves. In a time when post-natal depression has never been more prevalent, come on give a girl a break, let’s learn to support and love each other. Mums all around, it’s time to stop bashing each other and unite. In all our forms.We have good days and bad. We make good decisions and sometimes not such good ones. But they’re ones we’ve chosen for ourselves and our small people. Respect that. Don’t judge it and above all, be kind to your fellow mamasistas’s… Lov n’hugs always, Lady MamaG xox