Living. Learning. Creating.
That blood crusted crown, soft bone plates, pushed by birthing into cone-like shape.
The arbitrary beeping and calling throughout the ward; the scuffling of nurses shoes
announce their arrival –
I often pretended to be asleep when they peeked through the door from the corridor,
except when I didn’t, when I waved one in, or flagged one down in passing
as I pointed to my screaming baby in his plastic cradle on wheels,
“He’s still hungry and I’ve nothing left to give.”
I remember one nurse bringing the bottle of formula:
she stood not facing me, but to the side, as if to deflect
a perceived defeat
I might have been projecting.
She jutted out her arm, from a distance, and handed it over.
Kind words may have been said, I do not recall.
And body language is hard to dispute,
As is the silence of a finally full baby
and the relief this brings; a clearing of air.
So in retrospect, I harbour no ill-feelings:
I’d had another child before and knew this was only the second day.
My milk was still on its way, as are rainstorms conjured
out of pressure and warmth,
and I would make it through.
But other mothers are not as lucky, and I can only imagine
how they must feel.
Which is a shame, to be made to feel anything
other than extraordinary.
For International Women’s Day.
Karen Andrews is the creator of Miscellaneous Mum. This is one of the most established and well-respected parenting blogs in the country and is a two-time finalist in the Best Australian Blogs competition. She is also an author, award-winning writer, poet, editor and publisher at Miscellaneous Press. Is an exercise junkie (when she finds the time).
Thanks, not much coverage of International Womens Day this year!!
Beautiful .. Places me back in the room where we welcomed our children .. So long ago/only yesterday and my complete adoration of my wife and her ability to bring forth life!
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