Just Me

It’s been over a week since Ernie last had a breastfeed so I think I can now safely say that I am no longer a breastfeeding Mum. More strangely and breaking with some odd tradition that nature seems to have put upon us… I am also not pregnant. As soon as I stopped feeding Mabel at 12 months, I fell pregnant with Greta, and as soon as I stopped feeding her at 15 months, Ernie moved in and made himself comfy. So here I am now, at the end of 5 and a half years of continuous pregnancy and breastfeeding and for the first time in a while, well since I started doing it, I’m not growing a baby, I’m not sustaining life… I’m just me.

No longer can I lay any legitimate claim on the biggest slice of cake and my extra lie ins are looking dubious to say the least.

I’m not sure how I feel about it to be honest. There’s a big part of me that yearns to be pregnant again, to feel the excitement of knowing that there is something tiny growing inside me, the very beginning of new life, the biggest thing you could ever fit into the smallest space, just a few cells but so much more than that. But is that what I really truly want? Do I want to go through another pregnancy and all the stresses and strains that would put on my body? Could I cope with another ‘first year’ with the complete and utter exhaustion that would inevitably bring with it? Or do I just think that’s what I want because that has become all I know? Or is this my hormones talking? Is this what my body was designed to do, to make me want another baby as soon as the last one starts to need me a bit less?

img_4130

And then there’s another even bigger part of me that feels liberated and excited. To get my body back, my sleep back, maybe even a bit of time to myself! I’m looking forward to the plans we can make now that we aren’t working around a due date or a new baby that needs me almost 24/7. Maybe it’s time to start working on something else that isn’t another small human to add to my growing collection. Something that isn’t even this blog. Because as much as I love writing and taking photographs, it’s still all about the family, about my life as Mum. And maybe I need something completely separate, a hobby… like running or knitting(?) or…something! I think it’s time to, slowly but surely, start thinking about what it is that I want from life. My life is 99% wrapped up in the kids and on the most part I’m happy with it that way, I adore all the family time we spend together, but maybe it’s time to just start reclaiming a small bit for myself. Because before I know it they will all be grown up and leading their own lives and how will I know who I am then?

img_4137

But almost as much as it is exciting, it’s scary! Having a baby feels safe to me, and I know as well as anyone how hard it is, but it’s a well worn path, home territory, business as usual. Somehow, falling pregnant again and repeating the old pattern would in some ways be the easier option.  Moving on from making babies requires much more bravery. To draw a line under that part of my life is difficult. And when I see other people getting pregnant and having babies it just makes me think ‘I could do that, I’m good at that!’. Because having babies is kind of my thing, as sad as that is to admit.

But I  can’t go on having babies forever. I need a new thing. (But judging by these awkward photos it’s not going to be fashion blogging! ha)

Of course I’m Mum to a 1 year old, 3 year old and 4 year old, I’ll never truly be ‘just me’ ever again. I’ll always feel linked to them straight from my heart to theirs and nothing could ever change that. But now that it’s over, I’m realising just how much being pregnant or breastfeeding had become part of my identity over the last 5 or so years. As much as I’ll always be a Mum, there’s something special about that time when you are just sustaining them with your own body, and I’ll never have that again…. unless number four does decide to make a cheeky appearance (well you never know!)

img_4139

My lovely MAMA sweatshirt is by @RachaelKellett and avaliable here

Join the fun

Dsc_9172

Get a weekly round-up and exclusive content from our home educating, slow living, everyday adventure seeking life...

Follow:
Share:

3 Comments

  1. January 10, 2017 / 8:47 am

    It is really, really hard to readjust to the idea of your baby making days being over… I remember being utterly distraught and confused when I had to give up breastfeeding O when he was just 3 months old and I knew we couldn’t ever have a second baby either. I’d spent all my life dreaming of being a mum and the baby days seemed to be shooting by before I knew it and that scared me, because it felt like once I moved on that was it, door closed! But one thing I have come to understand over the past 5 years is that whilst the door may be closed on not having another baby, so many new doors open and you just have to walk forward. My baby will always be my baby, but in the meantime not having an actual baby means I can explore whole new things, and as scary as that can feel it’s also amazing. Give yourself time to readjust, you’ve been in the baby phase so much longer than I was so it will take time to readjust your thinking, but you will gradually find new things that draw you in 🙂 xx

  2. January 10, 2017 / 7:37 pm

    I know exactly how you feel. Andy and I always said we would have 2 children and we were lucky to get our wish. But the hormones and the knowing that is it still pulls on my heart strings. Since Holly turned two I’ve had moments of thinking have we made the right decision to stop at 2. If I was younger then I our decision may have been different and if I didn’t think that my body might actually break with a third pregnancy. I know deep down we made the right decision. If we were to gone and have a third this would have been the year I would have been pregnant. On the other hand it is lovely to slowly be getting a bit more time back, some time to be me. Life is slowly getting easier in lots of way and I am excited for the future. I think us mama’s are bloody brilliant, but we do need a break. x
    Laura – dear bear and beany recently posted…Living Arrows 02/52 {2017}My Profile

  3. January 13, 2017 / 10:20 am

    4 children is quite cool though no?!!! That’s what I try to convince myself anyway! Totally bonkers and crazy but cool!! Maybe you could find your thing whilst also squeezing in another??!! 😉 I also am hoping 2017 is the year that I focus on getting healthy and making the house lovey with lots of handmade things. I’m so excited for you and hope you find your thing! Looking forward to reading all about your adventures finding you x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge