Gradually as I began to get better, you would read aloud longer passages and poems to me as you had done when I was a child. You had always kept a commonplace book of snippets of poetry, prayer and anecdotes that had particularly struck you, entitled 'Consolations'. I devoured the collection as if it were ice-cold water offered to a parched traveller.
One thing that was not lost amongst the milk hazed chaos was how at certain points during those first intrepid weeks, me and my post baby self could have done with a list of new mum home truths that cut through the inertia of new mum bullshit and instead brought me and my over active worries back down to reality.
I remember feeling real contempt towards my partner when he regaled my labour story to our friends, as if it had been he who pushed an 8lb baby out of his mangina. 'It was like watching your favourite pub burning down. You know it will be rebuilt but it will never been the same again.' Hahahaha. Yes, hilarious. We were supposed to be in the most euphoric stage of our lives but I just wanted to kill him.
You might already feel guilty just for getting pregnant if you're not married and you've been brought up by that type of family. Or for ditching your work without an adequate handover when you bugger off for maternity leave (because who cares when your pelvis is falling apart and you can't pull your pants up properly).
About fifteen minutes ago (so it feels like, but according to records it was September 1992) I landed at Lancaster University as a fresher. I can still see it as a film, smell the cleaning fluid corridors, taste the tears, terrified in my bare room, burying into my cuddly panda for comfort. Time to be an adult.
My conversation with Milin, I've realised, must start here. It's time now to start laying the groundwork that will see him growing up to speak out for equality. ,I want him to do more than his fair share in quashing gender inequalities. I want him to grow up championing the rights of men and women, girls and boys, no matter who they are and where they are from.
For once the feed schedule you have tirelessly tried and beaten yourself up over when it failed, has started to stick giving your day some kind of shape. For once you feel like you have some control back. That your day is not just one long feeding session and that you have finally took a step towards some form of routine.
Caroline is passionate about empowering women to make themselves vital to their employers and their industry, so they don't end up getting sidelined on returning to work. "I help women look at how they can build their career and prove their worth long before they get pregnant so that any employer would give their right arm to keep them, even on a flexible basis.