Wednesday 3 August 2016

Conversations with my nearly 6 year old

"I grew in your tummy didn't I Mummy ?"

"Yes you did baby. "

"And I came out and I was born ?"


"Blue Bear was in someone else's tummy wasn't he ? "

"He was."

"He came to us because he couldn't stay with his family didn't he ?"

"That's right. It was to keep him safe. Just like me and Daddy have always kept you safe."

"Was it difficult having me ?"

I pause.

What I want to say is:

"It was harder than you know. I didn't meet Daddy until I was already older than most women are when they have their first baby. I spent too many years on crappy dates and meeting men who weren't Daddy - including a failed marriage to a man who told me he didn't want children. He now has two of them, so I guess he changed his mind. Then when I did meet Daddy it wasn't plain sailing, but we knew we wanted to be together. We both wished we'd met years earlier and wasted no time in trying to have a baby. Then it didn't happen. It was very difficult to hear that we couldn't have a baby. We cried and cried. More than I ever knew I could.

So much happened in between that I want to tell you about when you are older, but for now I want you to know this. I went to the Royal Court Theatre with friends one evening in January 2010. The play was terrible and the meal afterwards involved some creative accounting from the restaurant. Having sorted out the bill (I didn't drink wine so I was able to do the basic maths) I came home to Daddy and we agreed to do a pregnancy test. Just in case. It was positive. I cried. A lot.

I loved being pregnant and you were a joy. Even when I had morning sickness it meant you were growing and developing inside me. As you grew and my body changed I said goodbye to the slim body I had worked so hard to achieve with exercise and diet - and I didn't mind at all.

When you were ready to be born it was a long drawn out labour. It went from relaxed and beautiful with you and me in harmony to an emergency which they told Daddy could have cost us both our lives. Your Nani-Mummy - my Mummy - was in India and I couldn't even see her or talk to her. Daddy was brave and amazing, taking calls from my family asking how we were doing while keeping from me the news that as you were being born my Grandmother had passed away.

Then there you were. A blessing. My miracle baby. A beautiful unexpected 40th birthday present."

But I don't say any of that. I say,

"Well, it wasn't easy."

You smile.

"But it was worth it"

I say.

"For every moment you wriggled when I tried to sleep. When you had hiccups inside my tummy. When you hid from the sonographer and she had to coax you into turning round so she could tell us you were a boy. I used to sing to you all the time. - songs with the word baby in them."

"That's funny Mummy." 

"Well you were a cheeky monkey even inside my tummy."

"Blue Bear is a cheeky monkey too isn't he ?"

"He has the best teacher."

"I love you Mummy."

"I love you Baby."

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