I weep in the shower so no one will see my tears fall,
I scream silently so as not to make people feel uncomfortable,
I smile broadly when people ask how many children I have and I reply “just one beautiful daughter”
I cry when I chop onions and I cry when the wind blows against my face. I cry when no one will ask me why.
I watch our daughter blossom and smile at the young lady she is becoming,
She doesn’t see my tears in the swimming pool as she says “watch me mum” knowing she won’t seek my approval for much longer.
Once again my tears are hidden by the water, yesterday the shower and today the swimming pool. I have enough love in my heart to have two children shout “watch me mum”, I can’t bear this being how the story ends in my journey of motherhood.
My smile when I talk about my daughter is so genuine but my eyes remain sad. My eyes tell the story of a journey of motherhood different to the one I always anticipated I would have.
I envisaged a big table with several children all doing their homework whilst I stood chatting asking them about their school day and cooking something nourishing for their dinner.
Making the decision to have another child after such serious postnatal depression that left me hospitalised for 5 months last time was huge for us as a couple. We made the decision then decided I must complete my nursing degree first and establish my career again. So long before we were trying, which seems like forever now, we were planning therefore in the years since we made the choice we always anticipated our desire to have a baby would come to fruition quickly. We had an appointment with a perinatal psychiatrist a year ago now and formulated a plan which we anticipated we’d need before long, it hadn’t entered our head we might still be waiting.
Some women are not as fortunate as me, some women will never answer “yes one beautiful daughter” and I can only imagine the torment they feel. I don’t feel worthy of the tears that fall when I remember the blessing of our daughter. God blessed me with a daughter and my tears are disrespectful. My tears show I don’t trust His plan for my life.
I pray that one day I will hold another babe in my arms, the thought of not becoming a mum again is too much to bear. We haven’t planned anything this year, no holidays, no weekends away, I didn’t even enter the Great North Run. Why? Because we assumed I’d either be poorly with sickness (I had hyperemesis last time) or that I’d be hugely pregnant and not up to going far. Neither are true and yet our lives are still on hold.
Each month it gets harder, each month I stand in the rain to disguise my tears for a little bit longer and peel a few more onions. Next time you go to make small talk and ask someone if they ever thought about having another baby or indeed whether they want children at all; don’t. Please don’t. It’s the hardest lie in the world to retain ones composure when waiting for the rain to fall. Hold my hand and stand with me in the rain please.