This means so much to me.
The day I found out I was pregnant I decided to stop relaxing (chemically straightening) my hair. Partially because it was damaged but mainly because I wanted my baby to see themselves in me. I wanted my baby to see beauty in themselves too, so whether or not I wear weaves, wigs or extensions they know mamas got what they’ve got.
I’ve not seen my afro in 7 years, I wasn’t sure it would be bouncy and big just as it was in childhood but here it is in all its curly glory. I felt dubious when leaving home today but as the day has gone on, I love it even more especially when Sanaa got her fingers all tangled exploring. By loving myself and finding comfort in my natural state I hope she will learn to do the same.
Last week I received my exam schedule and topics, along with my assignment deadlines which are in April. Yikes!
I’m going back to uni on Thursday after not being there for 6 months. The prospect of being the girl who got the whispers and looks to blending in has brought on a lot of feelings I didn’t expect.
It was a bit of a catalyst for me I’m still in complete mum mode mentally. My daughter also started teething last week bless her cotton socks and I’m not yet feeling like myself which unfortunately for me is so frustrating. Life is not as I thought it would be. I’m trying so hard to find myself again but right now I’m not sure where to start.
Its disorientating to feel like you know exactly who you are and not feel like yourself; four months in and wow I adore my daughter in a way I didn’t even know I was capable of. But times passing and my thought processes are highlighting my unbelonging. I tried to throw myself into meeting local mums and whilst they were welcoming I felt uncomfortable it wasn’t my club! I couldn’t identify with them.
I am a mum yes but I don’t feel like I’m a proper mum yet, I dont have suggestions for parenting techniques and nursery ofsted reports. The idea of the collective mumosphere (my name for the mothering world) is so daunting to me because I want to be a good mum, the best one, seasoned in knowledge. I believe I will be one too however it doesn’t happen overnight and that’s where I’m finding the glitch.
I told myself in order to be enough I must be immersed in this whole new life “happily”, put myself on an unofficial deadline to have all the answers and get it all right. But, just like the exams period at uni in life you need to prepare in order to pass. So instead of viewing my week as bad I choose to see it as starting blocks for better.
The “finding out” is quite simple you take a test and call the doctor to make an appointment. Unless, you are me. I took 3 home tests 2 of which were digital. I went to the GP I had her test me too its not a standard procedure, I just wanted to be sure. Then at my midwife booking in appointment I asked for another she even said to me do you not believe that you’re pregnant the answer was no absolutely not. Shocked would be a reduction of describing how I felt stunned maybe but even that just about summed it up. It was about April so I had known about a month and had no physical symptoms of pregnancy but boy oh boy did my mind feel like jelly. Just a barrel of mess coincidentally I also had the biggest assignment of the academic year upcoming which I had not even started.
The process of accepting that my whole 5 year plan would be completely thwarted was a daunting journey. A hard and gritty realisation, the years between leaving my childhood home and creating own my home had taught me many things. One of the many and possibly most crucial things I had learned was that I was a woman with a need for hope. My hope looked very unconventional, uncomfortable, my hope was based on a need to have things done in a time frame I had set, in a way I had judged as appropriate, my hope was incredibly tangible it was where both my security and independence lay. Even through all of my adventures and ‘living’ I had structured it so I could not disappoint myself and in turn loose my hope.
To digest that I may not finish my academic year due to what most saw as a blessing I was torn and guilt consumed me. As a couple my boyfriend and I had always agreed should we fall pregnant it would be a no-brainer that we would become parents. So you see I was not torn because I was considering a termination quite the contrary I was torn because I couldn’t shake the feeling of lost hope of disappointment within myself and yet at the same time a love for a child that I’d not met felt or seen. It was the first time in nearly 5 years that I did not know what the future held and I could not plan for anything because for once instead of me happening to life, life was happening to me.
Young girl soon you’re going to meet life and it will never stop teaching you. All those mistakes are lessons to be learned, they are anecdotes to share. You will travel the world and fall in love. Firstly you will learn to love yourself. You will realise you cant control everything but can control how you behave by being graceful, polite and genuine; you’ll go further than you ever thought you could. If you feel comfortable it’s probably the calm before the storm and it’s okay to be scared because in you fear breeds logic. Please remember how to open your heart to forgiveness when your mind feels vengeful. I say this because the makings of you are the times where the easy option might not be the right option. When the day comes where you and everything as you know it feel, look, sound and taste unfamiliar be careful but be continuous you’re on a journey. The strength to always be better is admirable it is also a force unto itself and while you’re on the way there remember the way you’ve already come. It’s astounding who you will be compared to who you’re petrified of becoming. Yes I know now this is very complex. But all in preparation for a little girl who will enhance your life, in order to do right by her you must do right by you too. When you hear of her arrival many emotions will arise and you will not recognise who you are. But she will revive who you have always been. You will give birth to the life in her and she will give birth to the mother in you.
I choose to start 23 honest!
29 days out of 30 I probably spend like this with my little miss. No make up in my robe, winging it at life motherhood girlfriendhood adulthood sisterhood daughterhood and friendshiphood. Questioning if I’m failing or thriving feeling vulnerable and superhuman (I added to the worlds population under 3 months ago). Hoping that maybe this year will be the year I figure life out, knowing that this year will be like every other I will learn all I need to irrespective of whether or not I want to. Recently I have understood myself in depth; there are certain experiences that require you to face and reflect on who you are, that require you to be BARE. The standards shift when you look in the mirror daily and see your character instead of your features and because of this and the fact that every part of you is exposed requires complete honesty. I see me truly now.