Daily Mail Mother Hating.

I read an extremely rude article (obviously a daily mail special) about how fashionable it is to be a selfish mother, drink a lot of gin and confess to the moments your mothering has been a little under par. I get it, I write openly about how hard parenthood can be and I want so desperately to remove the stigma that plagues us all with having to be the best at something that is so notoriously hard for many of us but we need to do this with a degree of restraint because glamourising dysfunctional behaviour can be very damaging. The ‘instamum’ fad is something that I follow because it’s somewhat interesting but it is far from my life, I often blog about the difficulties of every day life with a baby and child and all the washing and the bloody bottles and before that the problems I had with boob feeding but it is all required to raise my little humans. I laugh at the size of my butt and the hangover I may have once a year when I dare to make that trip back into normality, BUT to me and many other mums it is not normality! I cannot afford to drink fancy gin infused with the flowers from a Beatrix Potter like garden, I cannot afford the beautiful shoes and all the fancy clothes, I cannot afford to resume my previous job and benefit from some of the freedom that may allow. I am not bitter, I have two gorgeous children and the last thing I want to do is be judgemental but what we should do is take the things we see with a pinch of salt because these mumma’s with the thousands of followers on social media may not be portraying the reality of their life (barely anyone does these days) and in allowing others to see what makes them popular as the norm of their life may lead to the imitation of this and it could become dangerous. Let’s face it all that gin they apparently consume may be a lie, and if it isn’t they may have a really good support network of people that help them out with their busy social life.
Essentially what I am trying to say in the most nonjudgmental way possible is that for the vast majority of us parents we cannot simply (and I do not believe we should either) slip children into our lives, we need to adapt and change to what they need. It is hard to retain your original identity when you have children, and I am not saying that you will never get it back or that at times it is not okay for it to make a comeback whilst you are at the bar drinking shots but that is not the reality your children need as a common occurrence. Children need to come first, that’s right I have to take a back seat with my own needs and wants to fulfil what I want for my children. I choose to populate, I need to ensure that I do it to my best abilities.
I also am suffering from postnatal depression and anxiety and whilst I do my best at as mum I can sometimes see the lifestyles of others who are more confident, outgoing and relaxed mothers and want a slice of that, I know my limitations and I cannot afford myself to slip into the bad habits of lazy parenting because it would be so detrimental for me. Remove the stigma of accepting that some days are a little shit, some weeks, some months even, do not glamorise the notion of being a mother that doesn’t care (not saying that they don’t) is okay. You get me?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-4508726/Why-women-boasting-slummy-mummies.html

 

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13st 10Ilbs

Before lunch.

I don’t know what it is about these numbers that cause me so much upset but if I am being honest they really do. My body is an issue to me, I don’t like it and I’m almost certain that I never will. This is not a blog that is going to inspire self acceptance or give you some bullshit speech about how perfect you are because quite frankly I’ve just told you hate my body, it’s also unlikely I’ve ever seen your’s, you don’t need my validation it won’t help you at all and lastly it is none of my business. But it is a business, a very lucrative one and if we consider that then maybe we can jump to the conclusion no one has a perfect body because how the fuck would they continue to make money out of us. We are not encouraged or allowed to feel good about ourselves.

Take plus size models for an example, how fucking fabulous do they look? They have their cellulite airbrushed out, they have their hair and makeup done professionally and they have a perfect skin tone all over. So is that the reality of being plus size?

I have never been happy with my weight and the acceptance of it hasn’t been in short supply, my partner loves my body and the way I look but it’s just not enough and I don’t think I’ll ever know what is enough. Some preach self love and I’m not saying that doesn’t work and many of you may have this but I don’t think that the confidence it takes is in huge supply. In short I’m trying and it’s not for me it’s for my daughter, a 7 year old I never want to have the internal conflict and struggle of who she is. I don’t want my son to grow up to become a man not only aware of this type of self doubt but who may use it in an emotionally damaging way.

There are women who work out 7 days a week, there are some that skip meals, there are even some that try to put on weight and those who are happy are often fucking shamed for this. We don’t value confidence but we strive for it

Basically there is no right just wrong, my favourite example of this is shaving adverts where the model shaves a hairless leg because the existence of hair means you’re lazy or dirty or unkempt. I don’t know how I’m going to do it but I’m trying to feel right about being wrong. I’m sharing this not to tell you what you think you want or need to hear, I’m doing it because you’re not alone

Below, I never wear matching underwear, I have a hole in these pants and the red line around my tummy is from my tights. My legs stick together. My skin is blotchy. I don’t like it but I’m going to do what I can to like it.

International Women’s Day.

It’s international women’s day and I’m going to take this opportunity to be brutally honest about what it’s like being a women, this obviously differs dependant on everyone’s social backgrounds and their lifestyles and careers etc.

I have never been held back by a man like I have by women, I have never been made to feel as horrendous by men as I have by women and so when I think about equality my first thoughts are how we need to first obtain mutual respect for each other as women before we can gain what we want from men.

I don’t wish to dismiss the pressing requirement for equal pay, equal opportunities, as well as freedom over our bodies (amongst other things) but on a day like today when we share bullshit sentiments of sisterhood I laugh at the notion this exists in the way that we portray it.

We have our girlfriends but many of us (if we’re being honest) view other women as a threat, whether that be physically or intellectually. I have a friend who makes me feel like shit every time I see her, on every occasion she does what she can to make me feel stupid, uncomfortable, and often less of a mother than her and however much I search I cannot find the reason for this. Girls at school were mean to me for countless reasons, I wasn’t popular, I had to work hard for the merely average grades I got, I liked different music, I read, I wasn’t as pretty as them, let alone all the reasons I didn’t know.

Sexual freedom and expression of sexuality is something women champion but I have been called a slut by women, never men. I have been made to feel bad about my body and sexuality, I have heard horrible rumours and the nasty things said about me.

At work I have been held back and stripped of my confidence by women. I have had my mental health laughed at by women, I have heard the things they have said about me and the jokes they have made behind my back. I have had all my hard work knocked out of me and all my knowledge used and never thanked for. I was called ‘unmanageable’, I was told not to try too hard, not to have passion. I was told to be 6/10 to make me less threatening and told to be less dedicated, take work less seriously. I was hated by some and laughed at by others.

I remember a set of friends making me feel so bad that I pretended to be ill for a week so I could have a break from them.

More recently I remember another women’s glee in telling me about problems in a previous relationship alluding to issues with my weight that has scarred me for life.

By women I have been called a slut, a cunt, ugly, fat, dirty, average, boring.

So if you learn anything from today please let it be to either become the women you post about and support your ladies like you claim to or skip celebrations of a international women’s day.

please consider helping a sister out with education and the ongoing education of children, please donate and share:

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/rebecca-goozee

Identity crisis. 

I don’t know where I am going with this but I wanted to know how we identify with ourselves, what we are and how we use our attributes to relate to others. It comes with a lot of change in how we have grown as a society during recent years, mainly surrounding LGBT 🏳️‍🌈. I am extremely liberal and embrace all differences in people, I have children and whoever they become in their future I will be proud as long as they are happy, what concerns me is how the evolution of society will affect us moving forward. Mainly with the neutralisation of gender, if we are campaigning to lose the pronouns of our gender what will that do?

I am regularly seeing massive fashion corporations using models of different sexes and varieties where they had previously not been, I embrace men, women, trans but when is it exploitation? When is the use of (for example) plus size models going to become unfashionable and then the fallout seen? Have we considered (with no disrespect or prejudice) the possible negative repercussions of this?

Society regularly evolves, social media has opened up so many avenues of expression, and personally I think that is wonderful however it has also lead me to be highly critical of my life, I can casually delve into the world of others and compare myself to unrealistic standards. I can strive to take on the character of other people but essentially I am myself and it can be hard to embrace that. I see this on the platform of motherhood. It can be painful to scrutinise yourself but to actively allow the media to adopt temporarily something they deem as fashionable about a certain set of people, women, men, mothers, children and use it until it’s no longer wanted can cause damage, I am sure.

I don’t want to see the embracing of ‘LGBT’ to be a phase that is exploited and then disregarded. If we as people allow the influence of neutralisation to evolve we don’t make everyone equal, we make the differences between us indistinguishable. Variety is the spice of life. Do not take this away simply to gain a misguided sense of unity, being liberal and accepting who we all are should be enough, I just really don’t want to see people stripped of their identities.

The Bigger Picture

This blog entry will be one of the hardest to write, I want to be honest and sincere because quite frankly as scary as the whole situation was I have a beautiful baby.

17th November 2015 I thought I’d lost George, I was on the boat home and I needed to pee so badly but being it was a rough crossing I stayed sat down, when the boat docked I stood up and thought I’d peed myself (not beyond me!) so I went to the toilet at the terminal and there I sat covered in my own blood. I cried and screamed in this little toilet, I called my partner who was waiting in the car park and he had to convince me to leave the cubicle. We sat silently in the car, I grabbed clean clothes from home, packed up some bits for Millie and took her to her grandfather’s before going to the hospital.

At the hospital we waited for hours and if I remember rightly we were low priority because I was miscarrying and there was nothing they could do, I could feel blood running from me and we were finally seen by the doctor who told me with all conviction that we were losing the baby. I was having a miscarriage. He offered me a referral for a scan in a few days to check that my womb was empty, I already had one booked and he confirmed I could use this. He then asked if there was anything he could say. The answer was no.

I got home and I spent what felt like hours in the shower. We bought a bottle of vodka and 20 cigarettes. I cried and cried and cried. We cried. We got daytime drunk and slept when we had exhausted ourselves crying. We had lost our baby. I cannot put into words the multitude of feelings that were circling my mind and as empathetic as I am I could never have expected this to have hurt as bad as it did. Everyone who knew were devastated, the hurt we were feeling had sent a ripple of pain through our families.

As empty as my body was feeling I’d never felt so loved, tragedy has a way of gripping everyone around you and unifying them with the notion supporting you and relieving the pain.

We have our baby, 6 days later the booked scan showed our baby. My partners first thought was it was a still from the previous appointment but no it belonged to us. There was so much going on inside at this point, I felt relieved but so scared.

It’s during times of exhaustion I need to remember that my partner helped me through this most painful time. He hid a lot of his own grief to look after me, he held me whilst I was sobbing, he reassured me that there was no fault or blame in what happened. He made the horrendous experience something that I can look back on as a point in our relationship where he put me above himself in the most selfless of ways.

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Drained and dangerous.

In many cases having a baby brings on a whole heap of emotions and they don’t appear to have any correlation at the start, it was quite uncontrollable. I was happy to have my baby, I was confused about my empty body, I was running on adrenaline from the birth. As the months have gone by I look at my body with a different shock, I meet my babies eye with a full range of emotions not just joy, the feelings are all there but sometimes I still get a little consumed by them occasionally. Occasionally being daily.

What I’m trying to say is I have a lot of feelings and they fall out very often, I kinda find that’s justified being that my body has been through a trauma and my life has been tipped upside down. I cry and I laugh, often within the same hour of each other. IT IS NOT DEPRESSION. Postnatal depression is real and it is hard, I suffered from this when my first was born, but what I am going through now is normal. I have barely slept, I worry about the things I have to do and what will happen if they aren’t done, I’m anxious about work, I’m scared about every night that comes closer, I am filed with love for my baby and looking at him makes me so happy. I get nervous my oldest doesn’t get what she needs, I get nervous that I overcompensate with her and the affect that it may have. So I have the spectrum of emotions running around my body and I often don’t have the mental capacity to keep them inside my body but a good way of getting them out is to question whether I have depression.

Depression is not something to be ashamed of, it’s not something to hide, but it’s also not a issue to be thrown around lightly. I’m quite insulted when my mental health is questioned and scrutinised. Life with children is hard, you have another life pushing boundaries, draining your energy, consuming all your resources. We would not allow this from a friend, a partner or even a parent or sibling but we allow this destruction of self from our children and that is part of parenting.

Parenting is often (I don’t want to generalise) harder on the mother, I grew a baby and then I gave birth to the baby. I have given up work, I have no money, because I don’t work I’m always on the night shift, I spend a lot of time in the home, the home I clean etc etc. I resent my partner for not having the same responsibilities as me and I don’t always in my rage remember he has his own responsibilities (granted their range is not as wide as mine). I don’t have depression I just hate you temporarily sometimes and I do believe you hate me back occasionally. You need to take some culpability for my feelings as I do yours and you need to try to elevate the burden of my internal struggle with my emotions because it will help us all in the long run.