When what you feel about the Royal Baby isn’t what you expected. This is for you.
Today is a happy day. A joyful day. A new baby has been born (many new babies actually but one especially famous one) and that’s always a happy day.
Except when it’s not. While the world celebrates and the media goes into an almost hysterical orbit over the birth of the royal baby, there are some women who will not be feeling joy today. Instead, they may be secretly feeling sad or inadequate or envious or a complex cocktail of melancholy they don’t even know how to articulate.
They may also be feeling quietly and profoundly ashamed. Ashamed that their bodies have not been able to make a baby or sustain a baby or successfully deliver a baby. Ashamed that they’ve never been able to hold a beautiful, pink, warm newborn while swathed in hospital sheets and bathed in heady congratulations. Compounding this even further is the shame that they feel somehow flat and disconnected from the global celebration over the royal baby news.
It’s a lonely, difficult place to be and we wanted to share this post because we know so many women who will be feeling this way today. Many of them are close to me and struggling with infertility or IVF or grieving the loss of a newborn or miscarriage.
The wonderful Bec Sparrow wrote about the following piece when Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge’s, first pregnancy was announced and she articulated this feeling beautifully and sensitively:
Bec Sparrow previously wrote:
When you’re desperately trying to conceive or have suffered a stillbirth or neo-natal death, the news of someone else’s pregnancy or birth can feel like a sucker punch.
And while I’m not in that headspace now, I have been. Boy, have I been.
A month or so after my daughter Georgie was stillborn in 2010, Nicole Kidman announced the arrival of her daughter Faith Margaret. And I was devastated. Nicole didn’t realise but she and I had been on the same road.