In ten days we will have a new addition to the family. We know exactly when he is coming - I have to have a C-section after an emergency one and another so I'm locked into this one. Most mothers who have C-sections feel a little guilty, as we're not having a natural birth.
Even when you tell yourself that it's best for you and baby you still feel a little pang. Mothers who can have natural births can sometimes be a little superior about it. As if growing a baby for nearly 10 months isn't enough - it's how you get it out that matters. Never mind the fact that myself and my other two wouldn't have survived childbirth.
"You had a C-section?" (This is delivered with a look of pity.)
My daughter's nine. I don't really want to keep trawling out the "Yeah - we might've died" thing because frankly it's getting boring.
I'm amazed at how bloody judgmental other mothers can be. Are there really women who think they have got it so right they can lord it over the rest of us? Even in their darkest moments dealing with a screaming colicky baby at 3am, they can still have the "I can hold my head high I gave birth naturally".
Ok. They can have that.
There are conversations you never imagined having.
"Do you know what sex the baby is?"
"Yes. A little boy"
"Aww. That's a shame. I always think it's nice to have a surprise."
Excuse me? This was my and my partner's decision and I never asked for your bloody opinion. I think it's nice for the whole family to get excited about who is coming and imagine how it will all pan out for everyone. We are a family.
"It's nice to have a surprise". Yes because otherwise meeting your baby is such an anti-climax. Piss off.
Why does everyone feel the need to subject you to his or her opinion? Mothers should know better. It's not easy this child-rearing thing. We all know that. We are doing our best. Inevitably the kids are going to find something objectionable about the way we raised them. Please can it NOT start off with how they exited the womb? At least let it be about something thoughtless we did or didn't do - not a matter of survival.
As a self-employed person about to take time out of the work arena, my thoughts also turn to the gigs I can't do. The work I'm missing and if I'll ever work again. I know this to be true of anyone self-employed. Never in my life did I think I'd be fantasising about maternity leave.
Imagine! A salary when you are sat at home in your pyjamas covered in baby-puke. I'm not alone. I know there are taxi-drivers, journalists and painters and decorators who worry about the same thing. You tell yourself that the most important thing in the world is your new baby but it's still not easy to let go. When you spend your life pushing yourself to create your work, it's not easy to take the foot off the gas and trust it will all be ok.
It will be though. I'm fairly sure no-one wants to see a comic who had just had a baby hobble onstage and make jokes about leaky tits and newborns. If anyone does, I know one who'll be available in around two weeks...
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