3 years ago (in 2 weeks) I gave birth to my son and heir. I'm not going to go into the details, but it was flipping traumatic. Sure, it was amazing, miraculous, yadda yadda.... but there is stuff that I am still angry about. My daughter's birth on the other hand was like Bambi, where my son's was more like Alien.
I felt like the first person to have a baby. Only one of my friends had given birth previously and she had moved to Africa. I felt alone and unsure. I felt like nobody really understood what I had just been through. Sure there were people who gave birth ages ago, but what do they know hey? They've been all healed by time. I know that's not entirely true, but it's how it felt at the time.
Yesterday, my sister-in-law's waters broke. Lets call her Rose. Stuff the Royal baby (and that comes from a monarchy geek), this was the birth of the century. I was mildly concerned but figured things would take a while and so shrugged it off. Yesterday evening Rose went to hospital. I was so excited! I went to bed and closed my eyes. I had visions of her in the same situation as me. Going through the pain and fear of labour. I had flashbacks of my experiences. Of how horrible the labour is and then how crazy the aftermath is when this whole new little person appears and is wholly, entirely yours.
Needless to say I got little sleep. It didn't help that my baby still wakes a few times in the night. By morning I was a wreck. Hubby ran downstairs and got my phone - no news. We spent the morning in a state of anxiety. I realised Rose was having a long labour like mine. I hoped to God that, even though it was long, it wasn't negative in any way. I wanted to help her, to tell her it was OK. I wanted somebody to tell me that she was alright and it was over for her
Her gorgeous baby eventually made his appearance, as babies are wont to do in their own sweet time. The relief I felt, I am sure, was only a fraction of what they felt. I didn't realise I would feel like this - reliving my experiences and worrying so much about hers. What made it even weirder was walking past the room where my son was born on the way to visit her. There are some demons wrapped up in that room and I tried to put those aside when I saw that Rose's room was an exact replica of mine. I felt this urge to protect her from my demons. If it would have been in any way appropriate or possible I would have become her personal bodyguard and supporter until she had recovered - but that may have been a bit much. Although I could have made a special hat.
However Rose feeds her baby I hope it's not a struggle, physically or emotionally. I want that for everyone, but I want it the most for those who I hold dear. I want everybody else to get the Bambi experience. I probably seem like a meddler, but it's just a bit of a mission of mine to prevent anybody having unnecessary bad experiences. That's my point really. It is such a shame that we don't all get that empowering, beautiful experience with an absence of maternal guilt.
Congratulations to all the new parents today xxx