Original post date: 12 March 2014
I know a lot of you have been waiting for a Dear Woody post.
If truth be told I haven't really known where to start. The problem is, if we were to start at the very beginning (which is a very good place to start), it all just feels too raw and scary still.
I know it can be really hard for some to understand what I went through. It's not even about the fact that my uterus ruptured. It's not even the fact that I thought I would die (well, it might be a little bit about that). I feel absolute, all consuming sorrow when I think about Woody's actual 'birth'. I often can't bring myself to say he was born, or even that I gave birth. He was delivered. I refer to his birth as 'The Event'. He was wrenched from me.
Again, I know that can be hard to understand, the idea of not having given birth. "What does it matter?" you might ask. Those who knew me whilst I was pregnant will know that I was VERY positive that I was going to have an amazing birth experience. I was a total bloody hippy about it. Every time I visualised his birth, I imagined that glorious moment of all consuming love as he was placed on my chest, for skin to skin, and amazing, immediate bonding and the rushes of hormones we can only dream of.
But that didn't happen. And instead I am haunted, daily, by the image of his purple, lifeless body being plonked onto my tummy, the cord being cut and him being whisked over to the resuscitaire. Where they began calling out numbers and times and saying things that scared the shit out of me, and Andy.
And then it goes hazy, because then I went into shock and my body started shutting down and I had to literally fight for my life. And I couldn't concentrate on Woody. There was nothing I could do for him at that point. I just had to trust that the Doctors and midwives looking after him would make him better again. Whilst I prayed they could do the same for me. And then, I didn't see him until he was 36 hours old. Bye bye hormones and glorious moment of birth and bonding.
I know, I really, REALLY know, people are just trying to gee me along and cheer me up and get me back on my feet when they tell me that I should be happy we survived, and to try to move on. I've suffered from depression before. This isn't depression. It feels deeper than that. The hole I'm in feels darker, and deeper and more lonely some days. Only some days, but on those days, there's not a lot anyone can say, just let me know that you're thinking of me.
I've discovered that birth trauma can be quite a lonely place. People wanted to hear my story to begin with. People were concerned, and shocked, and glad that I was alive and so was Woody. That we were both doing okay. I felt I was on a pedestal. I've been called a hero. I survived that. I fought it.
But there comes a point where I've told everyone I know. And I daren't talk any more. Everyone has heard it. I worry people are starting to grow bored of hearing me talk about it. Even the counsellor at the hospital seemed uninterested this week (although a screaming Woody may have had something to do with it, it was a bit of a waste of time this week).
I don't know what I'm getting at with this post. It's my usual rambly nonsense, and I hope I haven't offended any of you. I just needed to let everyone know that I have days where I feel all consumed by what happened. It's okay, I know that's hard to take. It's hard to see someone you know and care about in pain, although mental pain is really hard to empathise with I know. It's okay. You don't need to say anything. I know things like this make people feel uncomfortable, I get that. I just need everyone to know I'm still hurting. I will never get over it. Not fully. It may heal, but I will always carry with me the sense of loss I feel over the situation.
All that's left to say is to my darling boy, I am so glad we survived it baby, me and you kiddo. You're my hero.