There can be no denying that this past week has been hard. I have struggled. I have hated waking up feeling sick to the core. I have hated trudging through the day with the constant pit of nausea in my stomach and the swelling peaks of dread washing over me. Drowning me. It’s all coming back to me.
The Preschooler’s pregnancy was not an easy ride. I always assumed that working full time as a busy teacher had a lot to do with the extreme nausea and constant splitting headaches. I also always assumed that the sense of fear about the impending birth also played a huge role in how low I felt during that pregnancy. But now.
I am not working full time. I do not have 30 children to run around after (although my three can sometimes feel ten-fold) but I do have the same symptoms. The severe nausea that makes even walking a chore; driving is hellish to say the least. The headaches are beginning to creep up on me and yes, I am doing much of this through the week on my own. It isn’t easy having Ghostwriterdaddy working away so I guess my workload is similar. But- and this is a huge but that stabs my heart and chills my bones- I thought I was over The Preschooler’s birth. Or maybe not completely over, but at least a little healed. I thought I would have been able to answer the midwife’s questions about what happened and why I didn’t want to have this baby at my local hospital. It’s nothing against the staff, I assured her. It is the building. It is being there.
And then the letter turns up. My local hospital congratulating me on my pregnancy and thanking me for choosing their maternity unit. And like that the power starts to slip from my hands. Should I just give in and let them ‘care’ for me? It would be easier. A ten minute drive through town, rather than a 50 minute drive through the city. With a husband that works away all week it seems like the sensible option. It should be that simple.
And yet it is not. I can still see those corridors stretched out ahead of me. I can still taste the fear, the humiliation. I can feel defeat dripping from my aching limbs and I see my baby lying limp and blue on a table, all by himself. I can feel the deadness of my arms as they placed my baby there. I can feel the confusion. I can see the panic. I can feel wave after wave of fear, just by holding that letter.
I cannot go back there. A very good friend this week has told me to pick myself up and dust myself off and that is what I must do. I must fight for what is right, not what is easy. I am going to question my care. I am going to fight for my birth rights. I am going to prove that birth trauma is not my master; I am no slave to fear anymore. I do not need to fear my body or doubt what it can do. I am going to trust in ME.