|My niece is much to blame!|
The truth is I love being a mother and I loved being a mother to a newborn. I loved the feel of their soft skin and that beautiful baby smell they had. I loved holding my babies close as they fed from my milk swollen breasts. I loved looking down at them and touching their hands wondering how their personalities would develop, would my daughter be a leader? Would she be bold and brave? Or would she nibble her lower lip like I do when asked to speak in public? Would my son be loving and cheeky? Would he grow tall and tower above me? Would he kiss me on the head as he left the house to see friends? I loved changing them into new baby grows, capturing the first time they wore each one with my camera and my heart. I loved counting their toes and singing them songs as I gently rocked them to sleep in my arms. I loved watching them sleep, imagining their dreams and pondering their every smile or frown.
The fact is I loved being a mother to a newborn, but I have long placed the fear above the love. I fear having to buy a pregnancy test and feel like the world is staring at me wondering if I'm about to find out good news or bad. I fear looking for those two little lines that can mean your life changes forever. I fear having to tell the father. I fear having to raise another child alone and more than all of these fears, I fear waiting.
Waiting for 12 weeks when you are said to have reached that 'safe' stage and you have your first glimpse of your unborn child. Waiting for the doctors to give me an appointment to have a cervical stitch to hold my baby in, as my body has proven incapable of doing that alone. Waiting for the days after the stitch has been put in to see if I develop an infection, or the stitch ruptures. Waiting until I reach 22 weeks so if my baby is born prematurely he/she still has some chance, be it only a tiny one, of survival. Waiting until the stitch is removed. Waiting until I go into labour. Waiting until I hear that first cry and my baby is delivered safely into my arms. Waiting until I see their tiny chest rise and fall before I can drift off to sleep. Waiting until I stop fearing that I will somehow lose them.
I'm not like other mothers, I don't love being pregnant in fact I may even go so far as to say I hate it. I hated falling in love with a child that I wasn't sure I'd get to raise. I hated the feeling of excitement I got at those first flutters and the thud of that first kick, just in case they were to be the only time my baby would ever move. I hated the joy that rose within me as I watched the screen during the scans, as they wriggled around and gave me the pleasure of hearing their heartbeats, just in case that would be the last time. I hated going to bed at night unable to sleep, unable to hold in the tears that fear delivered as I held my hand against my bump. I hated going into labour and knowing that at any minute I would meet the little person that I had already grown to love, just in case that hospital room was the last place I would ever see them.
I hated waiting. I hated pregnancy.
But loved being a mother to a newborn.