Mother’s Day – From Loathing to Loving

This time last year I posted about my first Mother’s Day on the old Nifty Mum blog (which is now defunct!) I thought I would post about what I talked about last Mother’s Day Eve.

Mother’s Day 2007  Why won’t this baby sleep!!!!

My little girl is now just over 3 months old – it has been a rough 3 months. A post partum haemorrhage, blood transfusions, a close family friend is killed in a work accident, and a baby that just won’t sleep. No, let’s qualify that, a baby that will sleep when she is rocked in my arms, is held by her father or grandfather but as soon as her tiny body touches the cot or anything that resembles a bed she is wide awake and crying. When she is 2 months old I am diagnosed with Post Natal Depression (PND).

I can’t take it any longer. In the weeks prior to Mother’s Day, in the wee hours of the morning, the fight to get her to sleep has got the better of me. The sleep deprivation and sheer exhaustion has seen me shake my poor baby in a vain attempt to get her to stop crying. I quickly put her in her cot and am shocked at what I have just done. I am a health professional – I know what shaking a baby can do. I am horrified and disgusted by what I have just done. So this is motherhood.

Mother’s Day….a celebration of mothers and motherhood. I can see nothing to celebrate. Why the hell would I celebrate these feelings of utter exhaustion and frustration. Even worse to not want my baby.

2007: Trying to smile for the camera

Fast forward 4 years which have seen me put on the wrong anti depressants (ADs) and wrong dose (so untreated), have another child, be diagnosed again with PND, put on the RIGHT ADs and RIGHT dose, seeing a psychiatrist, family counsellor etc.

Eve of Mother’s Day 2012

My little girl is now in prep at school and yesterday the mothers are summoned to attend the class’s Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea. We are escorted into class by the kids, given crowns to wear which they have made, seated at tables with hand made placemats and coasters. We are treated to songs, cake, pink lemonade and more. My little girl is beside herself as she waves to me while they sing their song and delivers my food to me. It’s hard to believe that I didn’t want this gorgeous little girl. The little girl that gives me huge hugs and asks me “do you know who the best mum in the world is?”….I play dumb “Who?”….”You are!” she yells out. This is my real Mother’s Day present….one you can’t wrap….one that you earn….even if it is the hard way.

2012: No need to “try” this time!

So to all those mums that are out there wondering why the hell Mother’s Day exists, wondering why we should celebrate the crying, the sleep deprivation, the exhaustion and all the others things that you don’t read about in the “baby” books and the things that no one told you about. It’s ok to feel that way. We all have different journeys of motherhood. Some of us enjoy every moment gazing at our children in wonder, our hearts alight with joy. Unfortunately, like me, some do not.

I have had to work hard at this motherhood caper. I know no one said it would be easy but if others had of been more honest about what to expect it mightn’t have been such a bumpy road.

So if tomorrow you are having the kind of feelings that I experienced on my first Mother’s Day just know that it can get better, it may just take a while and a little/lot of work.

Linda

Comments

  1. Thank you so much, Linda… Your honesty puts my mind at ease more than I think you’d ever know. I agree with some of your comments in saying sometimes people just don’t want to hear about your experience when it’s been as ours has been, but on the flipside I guess our experience brings us to create blogs such as these and find a whole new community of support. It’s wonderful! I hope your Mother’s Day was fabulous.

  2. I have tears in my eyes Linda. Our journey is so similar. It’s so great to be coming out the other side alongside you.
    Hope you had a lovely day. xx

  3. Got all teary eyed when reading this post as life with our (now) three year old started off pretty rough – for like, the first entire year. My husband was ready for a vasectomy within the first month of bringing her home and the only reason why I told him No was because I didn’t want to have to mother two babies at once! Now, we’re expecting baby number two and couldn’t be more in love with baby number one. Tincture of Time is very effective – and a good night’s sleep!

  4. Oh Linda. I have tears and smiles as I read this. What a beautiful transformation you have made. Your wonderful kids, your fantastic journey of motherhood and your commitment to them. Thanks for sharing. Be proud my friend Xx

  5. Katie, that is true but maybe if we were all a little more open about things it would be easier to listen too. Thanks for your comment 🙂
    Dan, thank you xxxx

  6. if you be honest about it tho, noone seems to want to hear it or it just scares them. some just outright think you’re lying!

  7. Linda you are amazing and I applaud you. Love your honesty and determination. Your are a truly inspirational mother. Happy mothers day. X

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