This post is part of the #writingchallenge set by @mytalesfromthecrib. You can find her on Instagram
Revisit your list of ‘30 reasons why I am amazing’. Choose the one that surprises you and that you are most proud of. Elaborate.
1.I birthed both my babies naturally and never died.
This is the one I am most proud of and is probably the one that surprised me the most. The 16 year old me anyway. Believe it or not when I was growing up I was shy. As a child and all the way through my teenage years until I was about 16 I felt constant embarrassment, couldn’t look anyone in the face and wouldn’t say boo to a goose.
The college I chose to attend after high school was a different one to most of my class and was at the other side of town. For me this was a golden opportunity to be whoever I wanted, without questions or the judgemental gaze from my peers who I had been wary of for the whole of my school life. Having the freedom to be myself around strangers I found so liberating. To my surprise not only did people not mind it but they actually seemed to like it. The familiar feelings of being scared and unsure of absolutely everything ebbed away and were replaced with acceptance and popularity, things I’d never really experienced before on a social level. I’m now 40, and since then with each subsequent year of my life that has passed I have become more confident, stronger and fierce. Piggy backing on this came the realisation that the initial gratitude for acceptance I felt was no longer needed. So in other words, these days I adopt the ‘love me or hate me, this is me’ approach without much real concern as to which one is picked.
When I was pregnant I didn’t discuss my birthing plan with Husband or even myself I suppose. I just assumed with gritty determination right from the beginning that I would have a natural birth without drugs at a women’s midwife led birthing unit. I’m not sure exactly why I decided this, but there was never any doubt that this was what would happen with no consideration for other options. I knew it wouldn’t be a walk in the park and I wanted to keep a clear head so I could be present at all the crucial points without worrying about having any adverse reactions to the drugs I might be given. Basically if there is any chance at all that throwing up might occur whether it’s from being poorly, too many vodkas or pain relief when in labour it will definitely happen to me because I’m just one of those unfortunate sicky sorts.
Looking back now I can see that I wanted to be in control of my own journey into parenthood and taking the reins on this without a thought for anything else was maybe part of taking back the power I’d never had so early on in my life.
Birthing a child is one of those things that you do because it is necessary. After all at 9 months pregnant, how else is it getting out? It’s not something you would choose to do on a Sunday afternoon for fun and I’m not going to lie, it feels like a lorry has driven out of your vagina but my attitude was that it was a job that needed doing so I had better buckle down and get cracking. Both times I gave birth I was blessed with quick labours, healthy babies and living to tell the tale which left me with an enormous sense of empowerment. In fact I’d go as far as to say that both of my birthing experiences have had a huge influence on shaping me into the strong woman I am today. I brought life into the world and I didn’t die, even though at times it definitely felt like I might.