Wednesday, September 26, 2012


You don't get to choose your damage. Abuse, trauma, accidents, sickness, disease, death of a loved one. You don't know what's going to happen, or how you are going to handle it until it happens.

You do have one choice though.

How you deal with it.

You can allow it to dictate your life, make decisions for you. Or you can use it to shape your future. You can choose healing. The pain of healing can be awful. But it's better than living with the pain of the damage.

Cancer has to be cut out. Bones have to be re-broken to be set properly sometimes. Burns need dressing. Damaged limbs need amputation.

After writing yesterday's post I was a bit of a mess. I just felt horrid, and was quite upset. It wasn't until later when I was doing the dishes that I started putting the pieces together.

On Monday I was grocery shopping with the kids. As we were walking up an aisle I spotted the student midwife who was present when Charlie was born. I watched her face, a face that was etched into my memory.... but not a trace of recognition flashed into her eyes. Funny. It was one of the most important events of my life, but just another day at work for her.

Charlie is almost 9 months old. I fell pregnant with Charlie when Georgie was 9 months old.

As I was doing the dishes I had so many memories flash in my head. Of my labour with Charlie.

It was.... rough.

Not the pain, not the birth. But the labour. In my entire life I have never felt so bad. It was a completely degrading, humiliating experience. I had pushed it down, and pushed it away. And over time, I think the hurt kind of compounded a bit.

It's ironic really. Georgie's birth was filled with intervention, when she arrived Georgie was nowhere near as healthy, and whole as Charlie. She was small, jaundiced, she didn't feed well. Charlie on the other hand, was born completely intervention free. I didn't even have any pain medication. He was a great big healthy baby, he knew how to feed. He was practically perfect. Yet his is the birth that has left the largest scar.

It could have been worse. So much worse. The actual birth was really quite good. And the labour was short. But it was not good. I'm sure many women have experienced worse, and I ache for them. Maybe what happened to me wouldn't have bothered someone else.

But it hurt me.

You want to know something? Shane has found the two under two thing a bit hard at times. We both have, really. We always planned for a big-ish family. But he jokes about "No more babies!" I hate it. Hate it. But not because I'm scared that he will want to stop having children, and I will want to keep going. I'm scared because I think he will want to have more. And I might not be able to face going back.

I'm really glad that Charlie was not my first baby. He might have been an only child. I'm grateful that I had Georgie, so I know that the birthing experience can be a good one.

I'm pretty sure I will go back. Not for a good long while yet- we are busy enough right now! But it's going to be hard when we do.

I'd do it again, for Charlie, in a heartbeat. He was absolutely, positively, 100% worth it. I adore the snot out of my boy, and I am so, so glad that despite all the yuckiness that is Post Natal Depression, I have never had trouble bonding with him. Ironically, it was the midwife's rudeness that helped me forge a bond with my boy.

Worth it.

But I'm still angry, so angry about it all. As I was sobbing over the dishes I remembered hearing from a friend that that same midwife, the midwife who made me feel so low, is pregnant. In my anger I said "I hope she has an awful time! And gets hurt as much as she hurt me!"


Where did that come from? Have I been carrying that bitterness this whole time? I've still got a long way to go to forgive her. But I'm getting there.
I'm working on healing.

I pull the pain out of it's little box every now and then. The intensity of it knocks me over a little. But each time you examine the hurt, embrace it, and own it.... it gets a little bit smaller when you put it away again. And in time, I will be able to put it away for good. The monster will be small enough to tame, and it won't be able to claw it's way up to the surface, causing pain, anymore.


  1. I wish they had an attitude test for midwives. (Most would pass!) But they hold our vulnerability at a time when we're so fragile, and they have the opportunity to contribute to PND and PTSD in such a big way.

  2. What a cruel experience. I shudder to think how many woman she has the potential to hurt.
    You are strong and smart and one day those memories will hold much less pain. And you will always be a wonderful mummy, to your beautiful little girl and boy, plus any others that may be lucky enough to join your family :)

  3. Finally, I am at a computer to reply! I read this post and the last one, just completely nodding.. it was almost like I could have written the whole thing.

    Emily's birth was beyond traumatic. I had a great midwife, but a hospital system that let me down. Although, I was so embarassed by my labour.. I could hardly make eye contact with the midwives the next day.

    Emily's birth and my subsequent treatment, IS holding me back from having another.

    I am snappy. I am tired. I only have one child to wrangle, I can't imagine how you most be feeling. We will get there. Loz xx

  4. Oh Robyn, I feel your pain. I've been the victim of a narky midwife and it is horrible.
    I'm glad you're writing it out. You definitely need to. And the pain will lessen.
    Something my doc said to me was that PND is full of faulty thinking. Sometimes we have to right the seratonin levels in our brain before we can deal with those thoughts. Please get some help. You're so worth it xxx

  5. Hang onto that comment "it was the midwife's rudeness that helped me forge a bond with my boy". I had 2 caesars so I don't have an awful labour story, but if my nurse hadn't been so rude, I probably wouldn't have kept trying to breastfeed, one of the greatest experiences of my life. Sometimes we just need to find the tiniest little piece of good and give thanks to God for that, and he will help to heal the hurt of the rest.


Thanks for stopping by, I would so love to hear your thoughts!

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