baby

'I gave birth six days ago. There's so much I hope I forget.'

One day I’ll forget….

I’ll forget that for you to arrive in this world I’ve had my stomach sliced in two, and at times in the past six days the pain has been so immense that for hours each day, I don’t know how to cope.

But until I forget, I’ll remember the words of the midwife who sat on the end of my hospital bed on Wednesday, stroked my ankle and said “You know, we cut someone open here yesterday who had a heart bypass, they’ll stay for at least a week and we will ensure they go home to a care package in place so they do nothing but rest and get well. We cut you open yesterday and pulled out a 9 pound baby that today we are sending you home to care for and really, we have no idea of what support you have in place.”

I’ll forget that yesterday I fought with your daddy because every time he went off at your brothers and sisters for leaving their shoes lying around, not putting their plate in the dishwasher or bickering, it made me feel sick with worry he’s being too hard on them, given that their little lives are upside down since you came along and I’m unable to do the usual things they’re used to.

But until I forget, I’ll remember what he said to me whilst I was sobbing into my croissant – that he’s being how he’s always been with them, it’s what they’re used to and they don’t even listen to him half the time let alone get upset – the only one who’s overthinking anything right now in this house is me.

One day I’ll forget that I put an Instagram story up the other day where I was sobbing because I felt like your big sister had a crap birthday as I couldn’t get off the sofa, and how I wanted to sell the dog and my mouth was riddled with ulcers.

Watch: What shocked Bec Judd about birth. Post continues after video.

But until I forget, I’ll remember that within hours over 5,000 women I’ve never met had messaged me with the same four words – ‘Mama, you got this’ – and it made me see how amazing we are when we support one another.

One day I’ll forget scrolling across a ‘new mum’ on Instagram, wondering how after two weeks they’re back in the gym with a flat tummy, peach shaped arse, tanned body and a pearly white smile, whilst I can’t even climb the stairs or use muscles to flush the toilet without feeling drained.

But until I forget, I’ll remember that whilst looking at these perfect images, my body has been ripped apart to produce a miracle, and although for some people it’s normal to concentrate on getting their body back, it’s not mine.

One day I’ll forget the pain in my boobs right now from my milk coming in, the feeling of them being like solid concrete blocks with their own heartbeat and the fact that every time you wake to feed, I feel sick with dread.

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But until I forget, I’ll remember that this feeling is so very temporary and before I know it I will be able to whip my boob out anywhere, pain-free, to give you food and comfort and I know we’re both so lucky to experience that because it’s the best feeling in the world.


One day I’ll forget the women who have messaged my inbox telling me I’m ‘making a rod for my own back’ as you will never self-settle, or you will grow up being spoilt because your siblings don’t seem to ever leave you alone.

But until I forget, I’ll keep remembering the image of me – as a four-year-old girl, broken-hearted on my bottom bunk after my mum left, a time where I would have chopped my own arm off to be able to bury my head into her neck and smell her perfume, or feel the ridges on her finger nails as I fell asleep one more time and I’ll continue with the promise I’ve made to myself since then, that I will never be able to give any of my children ‘too much love’.

One day I’ll forget that feeling of panic as my eyes are closing for the tenth time and I hear you begin to stir again.

But until I forget, I’ll remember that before I know it you’ll be taking yourself off to bed like your big brothers and sisters, so for now I’ll make the most of staying awake whilst you cluster feed, watching the stars in the night sky and the sunrise in the early morning and googling whether it’s possible that I’ll die from tiredness.

One day I’ll forget the comments I read on yesterday’s post where a woman said I was ‘ramming it down non-breastfeeding mother’s throats’ that I was breastfeeding.

 

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First dinner date with my new man ????????????????

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But until I forget, I’ll remember that I covered an entire section in my book on how utterly painful breastfeeding can be, and if it wasn’t for my sister refusing to buy me formula fifteen years ago when I sat on my bed cradling a screaming Betsy and sobbing that I could no longer do it, if she hadn’t have made me promise to give it two weeks I would have stopped and I would have bottle fed my other three.

I also take my hat off to new mums who have their shit together enough to remember to make up enough bottles, wash, sterilise and be awake enough to put the right amount of powder with water and be prepared every time they leave the house because that’s hard work. I know that no matter what anyone comments on my posts I’m one of the women who doesn’t judge anyone for the way they choose to feed their baby, and thank God for us.

One day I’ll forget all of this…the irrational fears, the rollercoaster of emotions where I’m laughing one minute with happiness like I’ve never known, then feeling an overwhelming sadness for absolutely nothing the next.

I’ll forget how brutal it is on your body after you birth a baby and how everything is upside down and back to front, but until I forget, I’ll keep reminding myself how lucky I am, because some women would do anything to have what I’ve got right now, and I know despite what my hormones say, I’m so unbelievably lucky.

One day before much longer, you won’t be a tiny six-day-old baby like you are right now.

You’ll be huge, just like your brothers and sisters, and I won’t remember any of these feelings or thoughts, and when my friends go on to birth their babies and ask me advice I’ll genuinely forget ‘how I felt’, because life flies by and everything that’s consuming me right now will be a distant memory.

But until then, I’ll keep sharing my story, because I’m not scared to say that I need love, support, baby advice and funny stories from other people to get me through and by writing this, there’s a chance another new mum somewhere will read it and feel a little better.

This post originally appeared on Part Time Working Mummy and has been republished with full permission. For more from Rachaele, you can follow her on Instagram.

Tags: baby-2 , birth , child-birth , parenting-2
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