I’ve had this odd feeling when I’ve been out and about lately and I couldn’t quite put it into words, but I think I’ve worked it out as fraud.
I’m a mother. And I feel like a mother. I feel like I’ve changed since having Leo. Not because of his death or because of grief. Just because of him. Because of my love for him. My desire to protect him. Honour him. My pride for him. For us. Wanting to shout about him. Talk about him. Share his story. Buy things for him.
In public, I walk around thinking that my motherhood is obvious. I’ve changed so surely the world can see that. But what does a new mother look like? It’s a mother with a baby. I see them out and about and I recognise them. And I do not look like that. For my baby is not with me. He is asleep. I cannot hold him. I cannot take him outside and show him off to the world. I buy things for his grave. Or his memory. The opposite image of motherhood is all around us, especially with Mothers Day looming.
So that’s what that odd feeling boils down to. Feeling like a fraud. A mother. But not quite how the world recognises it. No one can ever take that away from me. And anyone naive and insensitive enough to think that they can deny me of my motherhood has little place in my world. I guess that’s why I called this blog A Bittersweet Motherhood. For that’s what it is.
I can’t stop thinking about Leo. If I focus well enough, and breathe deep enough, I can feel him with me and he calms me. We are forever linked. He is forever loved. That’s the sweet. The bitter needs no explaining.