An extract from my diary dated 29 November 2009:
As always it has been far too long between entries. When I look back to my last entry, I think about all the things that have happened since. Far too much to ever get down properly. Last time I wrote, S had told me he loved me. Eventually I said it back and we are still together. And things are really good. That’s not what’s troubling me today.
The problem is I want a baby. Crazy I know. Me, who used to hate children, now can’t stop thinking about being a mum. Can’t stop rubbing her belly hoping there was something inside more than nachos and Skittles. Wishing she was at a point in her life where she could have one. The depth of these feelings is frightening.
But the worse part is, I can’t talk to S about it. Talking about our future, marriage and babies is scary for him. So, when these feelings rise up in me – and these baby ones are happening often – I have to sit on it, close up, shut down. And it hurts.
I am quite a clucky person in general, but this is gnawing at me. I went to Target today and walking through the kids clothing department and I couldn’t help myself. I bought two outfits for S’s niece. I knew they were for her but as I walked through the store carrying them … I wished they were for my child, my three-year-old. I wanted people to look at me and think I was a mum.
And now I can’t stop thinking about it. I’m hormonal, my period is due Tuesday and I know it’s probably just hormones but somewhere I know this feeling is real. My body wants this. My heart wants this. And while my head is screaming how stupid it is, how poorly prepared I am to bring a child into the world, how S and I are in no position to have a child, still I want one. A child that cling to me, that knows I’m it’s mum and who I can make feel safe, loved, cared for and happy.
And I can’t tell the one person I want to eventually share that experience with.
It’s been eight years since I wrote that and interestingly, it was the last entry I ever wrote. I was writing full-time for work, so the last thing I wanted to do at home was write. It took me seven years to write for me again and in that time I had come full circle from this woman of longing and hope. But I remember how I felt when I wrote this and even recall another occasion later when I rocked a set of bedsheets in my arms like it was a baby.
The biological “need” that women experience to have children is undeniable. I’ve felt it. I’ve raged about it. It’s not something that we choose. It took me another five years to discover that sometimes we don’t get a choice about whether we can have children either.