When soldiers go into battle, they fight shoulder to shoulder, facing forward. But when they come home, there is no relationship like that of soldiers who have fought together. Our battle is one against the sorrows, challenges and pitfalls that life (and particularly Motherhood) throw at us, and we - facing forward – are only able to help each other in short spells when the air is clear before knuckling down for the next round. When our boots are on the ground, we can sometimes see our friend’s chaos in our peripheries but we can’t always hold off our own line to get there in time.
No life is summed up by one event, one experience, one friend, one week, one year - one anything.
When it comes to having a child with a disability, there may be tears and there may be pockets of pain. But when people watch us, when they walk past and look a little closer at Raph, I always notice my head raise high with pride. By choosing to fight, we've made the best choice for him – to have life. There are lots of emotions that come with disability, but I promise you, sadness is not one of them.
I’ve only been married 3 short years, and I’ve been a mother for even less, but yesterday I realised on reflection that in that short time I’ve had a range of different experiences as a mother. I’ve had both an emergency Cesarean and a normal birth, single pregnancies and twin pregnancy, experienced miscarriage, had a baby born with a disability, been both a stay at home mum and a working mum, had a healthy baby and a very sick baby, lived in NICU, have both exclusively breastfed and then exclusively pumped, I’m raising a boy and raising a girl. I’ve...Read more
I see another mother with a few kids, and I notice a great big hole in my own heart. Where I used to feel a connection to this mother I now feel nothing... ...I yearn for the old difficulties of a ‘normal’ mum. I realise I’m not part of that club anymore and it hurts, I suddenly feel totally isolated.
There is no pain quite like the pain a mother experiences when her child is suffering and there is nothing she can do about it. It is a great ache and the heaviest cross.
“I don’t know how you do it” a friend comments as we pack up and get in the car. I laugh the comment off “oh you get used to it” but on my way home after a particularly painful event, I do think to myself, is this crazy? Should I be doing this?
My dearest friend in the whole world lost her precious daughter 3 days ago. She was 37 weeks pregnant. The grief that overwhelms you at the loss of a child is something everyone attempts to imagine; but no one can fathom.
When we got married, we planned a busy and productive life. Whether it be becoming savvy, successful investors, living abroad with stacks of kids or each pursuing successful, satisfying careers we knew we wanted a lot to flourish from our marriage. We were confident and proud, we imagined and planned a lot of things for our first 10 years. But as they say, “if you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.”