Today’s Freestyle Fridays guest post is by Alienora Taylor of Alien Aura’s Blog: It’ll Blow Your Mind. I am somewhat new to her blog and I love it. She writes about a variety of topics with such eloquence. If you haven’t read her work yet, you won’t be disappointed. I linked to a particularly beautifully written piece that is fresh and raw and sensual. Enjoy!
I did not expect to become a mother.
My thirties inched towards the forties and I watched as two of my younger sisters brought beautiful children – five in all, at that point, between them – into the world. Auntie, I was, and proud of it: loved my four nephews and one niece. But, if I am honest, my feelings about motherhood were ambivalent at best.
I dreaded the mess I was convinced I would make of such an important role: was convinced that I was too screwed-up and neurotic to become a mother – and, as the months and years advanced, I told myself that I was probably borderline infertile anyway.
But, there was always a secret part of me which longed, with total passion, to conceive my own child.
I denied this little voice, the tiny proto-human waiting in the wings of my womb, for years.
But some things are stronger than our minds and moods, are they not?
Did I mean to get pregnant?
Yes. At some level, I think it was intentional.
It was Valentine’s Day 1997 – and my partner and I had sex. I lied, said it was a safe time – and, drunk, we did not use any protection.
I was thirty-nine years and two months old.
I did not wish to trap this man, but there were insecurities at play in the relationship.
I knew almost immediately that I had conceived: it felt as if a trap door slammed shut inside me – and, of course, there were other, more conventional signs: lack of period, sore breasts and intense weepiness.
At the clinic, three weeks later, I tested positive. Of course I did. I was never in any doubt that I would.
I knew that the child I carried was a boy well before that fact was confirmed via scan; I also knew that he was here to stay – that he would not escape before his time or be lost in a great rush of blood.
He arrived, this perfect tiny being, at 10.32pm on Tuesday 11th November 1997 – and I loved him straightaway. I would have fought dragons and moved mountains for him. I would have protected him by giving up my own life had it come to that particular crunch.
It has not always been easy – for any of us. For reasons which are not relevant to this post, I had to go back to my full time job as a teacher when my child was three months old.
I have NEVER forgotten the heartbreak of that drive, taking my baby to a childminder for the first time, my breasts leaking the milk I should have been feeding him into inadequate pads all day, as I tried to teach adolescents about Shakespeare without bursting into sobs. The physical longing for that tiny scrap of humanity was so intense – and, when I picked him up at the end of the day, I just fell upon him, inhaling his milky head smell, his baby perfumes.
For financial reasons, I had to work full time until two years ago. I then took early retirement.
This has meant that I have never been able to take my little one to school or pick him up; it has meant (because my husband worked as well) that our boy needed to go to a childminder before and after school until he went to secondary school.
But, weekends, when he was two, he and I started to go to car boot sales in the local area, and stopped at cafes afterwards. This was a great bonding experience. We even had our own car boot song which we used to sing lustily on every journey.
As I say, it has not always been easy. Because we are older parents, the boy has suffered more than his fair share of bereavements, family illnesses and, in my case, breakdowns and anxiety/depression.
He is now sixteen – and has already been to more funerals than I had when I was in my mid-thirties.
But, he is a wonderful boy. He is able to assert himself when he needs to – but is a gentle soul at heart, and very perceptive, empathic. He is extremely good-looking – and talented: musical, a gifted writer, en excellent fencer and possessed of a fabulously dry wit.
He is moving fast into independence – as he should be – and I am having to learn to let go, to reel the umbilical cord back in, to give him his space.
But he is, and always will be, my dowd/doude – the gift from the Creator to my middle years.
And I shall always love him.
Thank you Alienora for this beautiful tribute to a mother’s love.
If you would like to guest post, message me! Have a wonderful Friday!