This chocolate (and as you all know, I’m quite partial to a piece or four on any regular day) was very much celebrated if only for the fact that it meant I was home and able to eat it. Not at the hospital. Having a baby. Early.
I’ve just had a little bout of false labour at thirty-four weeks pregnant, which was a little too real for comfort, to be frank. Because, although most google-able literature states that babies born this far along generally do okay with a little help, I’m more of a ‘let’s be absolutely, totally sure’ kind of a girl.
And so, now, looking back at the achy little while gone by, I hush my babe back to rest and find peace again in its sweet, stretchy movements; contractions put away, hopefully for weeks beyond this day.
It’s a beautiful time, for me. I’m seven weeks away from meeting my sweet little baby number three, and nesting has well and truly begun.
Life has been busy and forceful, if I look at it carefully and agree with the truth of it. Lockdown and homeschooling. Rushing to finish painting our home before baby arrives (I simultaneously love painting, and never want to see another tin of paint again.)
Beneath it all, though, lies a quiet hum. A hum so lovely, I’m certain it’s the stuff a summer breeze is made of. Lately, it’s been with me when I open the baby’s wardrobe; I stand there a little longer than I need to, just because it’s so lovely to be with my baby in that ‘real’ kind of way.
It’s the same loveliness that occasionally stands with me at my children’s doorway while they sleep. And, although I’ll never deny that motherhood aches and destroys at times, I’ll always be grateful for the quiet moments it brings my soul.
We’re heading into winter in Australia, and I’m feeling the resistance rising already.
I’ve come to dread winter for the internal obstacles it brings. Sunny days charge my batteries and fill my joy pots to a state of ‘just so’, and yet here comes winter to tear my joy pots apart once more.
The problem lies not only in the darkness that will inevitably replace the beautiful streams of sunlight that flood my lounge room, daily, but also the lack of choice that will come attached to the forthcoming rainy days. So, kids. I guess it’s a stay inside again, kind of day, today. That sort of thing.
My children are three and six years old. And I have been in training to be their Mum my whole life because, essentially, I’ve done it all before, being the much older sibling to my two brothers and sister (now adults, where does time go? I’ll always be amazed.)
The thing is: winter makes me feel as though I might not be as wonderful at this ‘Mum thing’ as I always dreamed I’d be. Winter melts me into a bit of a tizz, to put it lightly, because the truth is: there are only so many hours of yes in my Mum tank to keep these little ones (and myself) happy in the face of a rainy day.
And so I’m really quite frightened at what’s to come. Especially this winter, now that I don’t have a partner in crime to lighten the load every second week when the children are with me.
The bright side of this admission is this— I am doing an excellent job at being human. I am seeing the reality of my limitations and admit that I just may need a little bit of extra help this time around.
I’m tired. I’m so tired of lying to myself, pretending that the things, situations, people, scenarios that I’m not entirely okay with…are all sunshine and rainbows. They are not. Dark clouds have existed since the beginning of time. They do not disappear simply because I insist upon looking to the sky and telling everyone around me that they are white.
I wish I wasn’t dreading winter. I wish I wasn’t sometimes afraid that I might break my children—the latter is something I am particularly scared of. My Mum was diagnosed with Bi-Polar disorder in my early teenage years, and I am still trying to pick up all the pieces of her broken within me.
I do know I will be okay, and I do know my beautiful babies will be okay, too. I am a beautiful Mother (if I don’t say so myself) and I don’t need a sunny day to tell me the love I bring to my babies’ lives is filling their spirits with all the lovely things.
Winter is the mountain that lay ahead of me. But this awareness is, at least, a good thing because it gives me time to gather my climbing tools and prepare for the climb. Life can be so hard, sometimes, but there has never been a day of it that has not been worth the struggle.
Because I am me, and I am Mum.
How beautiful to be able to hold those titles with such love, and pride, and grace.