Labour was in some ways not as bad as I had feared and in some ways beyond my worst nightmare. But I guess I got off pretty easily mostly due to the epidural. How can I describe what I felt when the doctor put Anna on my tummy and said “It’s a girl”? The gooey, covered in blood, tiny alien was what I had been waiting for all my life. Somehow the memory of that moment is somewhat hazy in my mind. But I do remember 2 things vividly – one, the thrill I felt when doc said it was a girl and two, the tears in R’s eyes when he saw her.
The rest of the hospital stay was a blur. In 3 days we were home and that’s when it began. I was in no way prepared for the reality of a baby and the fact that your body and soul now belong completely and irrevocably to someone else. Marriage hadn’t changed my life too much. I never felt that I had lost my independence or my self and we really had a blast. We were madly in love and knew each other well so the initial hiccups were very few and far in between. But once we were home with the baby it hit me like a ton of bricks that I had to say bye-bye to my old life. That I couldn’t sleep at night. That I HAD to feed the baby even though the pain made we want to die. That I couldn’t just lie around with a book. I would sometimes look out of the window and see people on the road and I would be filled with envy. Because I couldn’t just walk out. I almost hated R sometimes. He could go to office and sleep at night while I was stuck. For the first time in my life I realised how hard it is to be a woman. I’d always known that men have it easy but had never realized just how difficult life is once you have a baby. I somehow got through days by muttering to myself that the worst was over and the best was yet to come.
Now 10 months later life is much easier. Anna is a beautiful, active and very naughty baby. Now each evening I keep waiting for when I can run home and be with her. The nights are not so sleepless any more and the crying is much less. I know it’s what every mom goes through but somehow the whole experience really shook me up. When you want something so very badly and you finally get it you should be delirious with happiness. But somedays I found myself secretly wanting to give her back to the hospital. Even though my mom was with me and R helped a lot I still felt overwhelmed. I guess it’s part of becoming a mom.
Do I regret having a baby? A hundred times no. Do I sometimes miss my old life? Yes. Do I love being with Anna and watching her grow? It’s without doubt the most fascinating and rewarding thing I’ve ever done.
I’m not proud of the negative feelings I had. I’m not sure I can talk about them any time soon. Writing it down has been hard enough. But out of all this I have changed. And I hope for the better. I think I’m less selfish now. It’s hard to be selfish when the most adorable little person in the world looks at you with complete trust in her eyes. When she wants to cling to you even though she’s upset because you shouted at her.
I guess this time I really got what I wished for and I can’t thank God enough. Anna is the love of my life. When I see R with her I fall in love with him all over again. And I know that it will only get better.