I’ve always wanted to be a mother, as most women do. I’ve always known I’d check in as a permanent resident of Heartbreak Hotel if I was one day told I’d never become one. I couldn’t bear to think of it.
And now, I’ve been told I’m going to become one. Provided all goes well, of course. And I really do know how lucky and blessed that makes me.
But, here’s the thing… Call me a dreamer, but I always thought that when that moment came, I’d tumble into a huge vat of happiness… Giddily rolling around in it like bubbles dancing in lemonade. But, the reality is, when I found out, my reaction was… different. I panicked. Worried. Freaked out. Wondered. Even cried.
This wasn’t a planned pregnancy, this was a surprise. Some say that’s the best kind. I kinda think they’re all amazing. But, because a MAJOR life decision was made for me (can you say understatement?!), the control freak in me froze. I wondered if I was really ready for this, if I could cope with a long pregnancy, if I have the skills to be a mother, if I am capable of putting my needs on hold for, I dunno… the next few decades. And, suddenly, all I saw when I walked the streets were babies crying and toddlers throwing tantrums. It all looked so permanent, so irreversible. Because it is.
It didn’t help that I didn’t have a great first trimester. Thank heavens I wasn’t vomity, but I did suffer from enormous fatigue and a constant feeling of extreme flu. It’s hard to be emotionally strong when your body just isn’t there for you. I’ve always loved to work, socialise, be strong. Physically, I just didn’t feel like myself. Because I’m kinda not, right now. There’s two of us trying to make it through in here – a shared space.
So, I found myself worrying about what this all meant, rather than spinning cartwheels down the street with sudden joy. And that’s fairly frightening to admit, because I’d hate to think my child-to-be would ever think he/she was unwanted. I never didn’t want it. In fact, I recall when I was doing my pregnancy test, I was secretly crossing my fingers that it would be positive. But, I can’t change the fact that I was totally blind-sided by nature. But the good news is, by the start of my second trimester, I started feeling much, much more excited. I’m still scared, but I want it. I want it really REALLY bad. And I know how lucky I am.
So, maybe this is it… the first of many surprises of motherhood. I’ve now learned that wistfully dreaming about something usually transforms into a self-portrait of sunshine, roses and vats of lemonade. The reality of it can look, feel and taste quite different. But that doesn’t make it any less important, or any less beautiful. In fact, it’s more so. Because it’s actually real.
What was your reaction to finding out you were expecting? Share your experiences in the comment section below.