You know the words 'Post Natal Depression' and if you havent had it yourself then you know someone or have heard of someone who has. Well I have been sinking in this world for 2 1/2 years now. I pushed so hard for my daughter, after many tragedies we finally had her, but in that split second where you see mothers smiling in ecstasy at their new borns, my first thought was 'ohh my god, who are you and what have I done'. I was completely overwhelmed from the first second she arrived and felt like running. I had a really well meaning friend see it and she told me, I was livid, I threw it back in her face and discarded her from my life...woops! sorry! But we honestly couldnt see it then, not even Kelly, isnt mothering supposed to be hard??? We kept going and at 6 months I was ready to flip, I refused to take any meds and instead got a part time job so me and Kelly worked a 1/2 day each, this was much more my style. But its Kelly who can console her best and always got her to sleep in the middle of the night. I constantly felt I was failing as a mother, I would observe other mothers and wonder what they were feeling, because inside me I felt nothing, and I still feel mainly nothing. I love my child and would never leave her, wish her not here, or do anything ever to harm her...but the truth is, I just dont feel it at all, which I sometimes wonder may be more depressing than feeling something negative. Its been a hard journey and especially now with the last 6 months of my crazy soul searching journey, this mothering issue has risen and risen and risen. So this week I have run at it head on and this is what happened.
I have realised that my child was so independent from day one. That she didnt need me like other kids needed their mothers, she didnt do cuddles much, wasent a demand feeder, hated being swaddled. She is still so independent now, and loves to spend a few days a week (3) with her Grandma and Nana.
We just dont do what other mothers and daughters do, we interact perfectly but when I try to be too much of a mum she hates it. So I have to stop comparing myself constantly to other mothers and especially the smother mothers! and realise that this is our reality, this is how our relationship works...and thats the thing, it really does work. This week after changing my perspective we have been so happy and fine and my mood has completely changed and I do feel the love. All I had been concetrating on was what we werent doing and all the negative parts, not what we were doing.
We make art together and along side each other ( she needs her creative space or gets titchy when mummy is helping!! woops) we cook dinner together, read, sing, sew clothes, explore nature, dance, garden, play with animals, do our farm chores. She is very very capable for her age everyone comments.
So Im not failing... Im just different.
I got out my Shona Cole book "The Artistic Mother" and started to reread about my creativity on this new mothering journey Im on.
What I did was make this journal, I had such a nice time making the cover and the book has plain pages in but also my daughters paintings, you know those thousands on painting you have stacked and dont know when you will ever be able to use them, well here they are, all bound together.
Im glad I finally know this now....
There is plenty of love...
we need each other in our own special way...
So go easy on yourself Mothers and Mothers to be
This is your world and your reality
so it dosent matter how you do it, as long as it works for you and yours