Monday, 18 April 2016

Childlessness -One Day at a Time. (A Diary Entry).

I was very low and frustrated overnight. A close friend  will give birth to her first baby any day now.

I have asked all the right questions, the way you're supposed to! She knows me well enough to know that it's hard, and said 'you don't have to ask'. What am I supposed to do? Act like I don't care, pretend it's not happening?! That's not fair to her. Of course I care!

What makes it harder for me though, is that I thought she (was) the least maternal person you could ever wish to meet. She just wasn't interested at all...but then she got married and her blasted biological clock kicked in, as it does.

I know a lot about biological clocks. I'm permanently at war with mine, and there are reminders everywhere I turn, from adverts on television, to social media. Sometimes it can feel like a conspiracy. The world has a secret that I'm not allowed to share. 

Realistically I know that even if it wasn't unlikely I'd go full term and not 'possibly' dangerous for me, I physically could not cope with motherhood.

Due to the fact I can't walk or stand unaided, (as a result of Cerebral Palsy) I'd find it difficult to pick the baby up and I wouldn't be able to rescue a toddler from potential danger.

On top of that,I'd be even more exhausted than I am now, plus I would worry about how my limitations, (and depression) would effect a child. It would break my heart not to be able to do so many of the things other parents take for granted, although I know there are ways and means...

Not that I'm saying disabled people shouldn't have children. Of course we should - but with our age gap too, there's a high possibility I would end up alone -even if hubby did want any more children.  

It's all very complicated, and most of the time I can be fine with it, (at least on the surface), It's a different story underneath. It doesn't stop hurting. Like so many other women (and men), I have to find a way to live with it.

Last night though, I was lying in the dark, my hips were killing me and it all just hit me in a massive wave! Hubby was asleep in the next room. We often sleep apart now, because my (chronic) insomnia coupled with his snoring is not conducive to a good night's sleep for either of us!

I got up and wandered aimlessly around the house, and then sat on the sofa in the dark for I don't know how long. I've tried on line childlessness support groups, but I find them frustrating. This is going to sound wrong, but there I'm surrounded by people for whom childlessness is the only issue. 

They don't have disabilities to contend with as well, so their situation is the centre of everything. Not that that is wrong, (and I understand their pain completely) but if I'm honest, sometimes I've  ended up thinking ' you're lucky that this is all you have to contend with'...and then I feel intensely guilty for thinking like that! I had to leave the groups because they were just too confronting for me.

The thing is, I don't want my disability or my childlessness to define me or my life. I want to move forward and just be myself, and I know I'll get there one day. 

I'm already further along the road to acceptance (of both situations) than I ever thought I would be, but that doesn't mean I don't feel completely ripped apart sometimes. I don't know if I'll ever fully accept it. I don't know if I ever can!

There are times when I don't feel like a 'real' woman because of these things, and in that way I'm at war with myself too - but I don't want to be at war with myself, so I try very hard to take everyday as it comes, and make something good out of my life - because it IS good!

Hubby has made me happier than I ever thought I would be, and I KNOW I'm so much luckier than a lot of people, so I try not to take anything for granted - but by not taking anything for granted, I'm super aware of what I have to lose.
I'm super aware of everything actually. I can pick up on the emotions in another person, and I can sense things. 

Of course, then comes the guilt! I know how lucky I am, so I feel guilty for feeling sad and frustrated about the things I don't have! Mum always tells me 'There's always someone worse off than you', - and she's right!
 Also the multiple anaesthetics I had when I was fourteen (during multiple surgeries to improve my mobility) has meant my serotonin levels are damaged - so to a certain extent I have to allow for that - and I know I'll be on anti-depressants for the rest of my life.

All I can do is hope that it really does get easier and that that I'll be OK until it does. I just have to hang on in there, and take one day at a time.

After all, that's all any of us can do.

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