Listening To The Voices


As I sit here typing these words to you, a beautiful cot bed has taken residence in my bedroom and a room has been painted with farm animals. A little Christmas stocking is being packed and a ‘going home’ outfit has been brought and cooed over. This time next month, should I have not had my baby, I will be nearly a week overdue. Alternatively my life may already have changed irrevocably. Selfishly not only have I got the excitement of Christmas but also the birth of my first baby to enjoy. Being pregnant at this time I think has made it easier to push aside my fears for labour and concentrate on preparing for Christmas. On the other hand, it has not been easy juggling the different demands on my time. Whichever way I look at it though, for me having a baby at Christmas time is a blessing and I foresee no disadvantages for my child of having a birthday so near Christmas. In fact one of my school friends has a birthday on my baby’s due date and in no way felt disadvantaged growing up.

It is funny that as soon as the pregnancy test confirmed a positive result, as a new parent my mind quickly became flooded with ideas and wants for my child. It is only until recently that I have thought about what I want out of motherhood. My pregnancy has not been easy and despite the fact that my job was far from ideal, I have not relished in being signed of sick for the past four months. I am not one to relax easily and actually enjoy working. For this reason, I have spent the past months working more solidly on my writing and have enjoyed working 9-5 in my office (a.k.a the spare bedroom) on my various writing projects.

Becoming pregnant has not been a private experience, many people have felt it their place to give advice on how to do things, how I should feel, what I should be doing, how I will cope (and in some cases not cope) with the impending birth and life afterwards. It has often been hard for me to find my voice among all the others and this is one of the things that has frightened me the most. I have for a several days sat in front of my laptop willing inspiration to come but my mind seemed to be clouded with the echoes of all the advice that I have been given either in person or via pages of a magazine. I know parenthood will not be easy and I know there will be times when I may want to turn the clock back but what I will find the most difficult to cope with is if I lose my voice. Becoming a mother was all I ever wanted to be since I was a little girl. Having said that, being a mother is not the only thing I want to be known for.

Being the youngest by ten years, I have often been expected to ‘do as I was told’ and have done so on many occasions even though my inner voice has had an opinion of its own. Since my sick leave has begun, I have allowed myself to be immersed in writing sometimes at the cost of housework and to the surprise of some, the nesting instinct of many pregnant women. Ultimately, I want to be taken seriously as a writer and although I know it will be a struggle to juggle motherhood with writing, I will enjoy and am already enjoying the challenge.

In my mind, what is more important than anything is not what you are doing to prepare for parenthood but how you are preparing. I’ve learnt to listen more to my inner voice and although I should have succumbed to the nesting instinct more readily or earlier than I have done, I needed to have those months to myself beforehand. I needed to find my inner voice before it was completely overwhelmed by well-meaning advice, nappies, bottles and sleepless nights.

One of the best pieces of advice I have been given is that in order to look after baby, I need to look after myself. The only voice I truly need to listen to is my own. I may have taken on too much in the lead up to such a life changing event but in listening to me, I have written a children’s book and am in the middle of illustrating it in preparation for self publication; I am reviewing books more regularly now, writing research reports on chosen topics and even examining the possibility of starting my own business. I appreciate that I have been lucky to be given this spare time, however I also appreciate now the age-old expression that your future does not simply fall in your lap, you have to work for it and in some cases burn the candle at both ends.

I am now beginning to think like a writer. Now when people ask me what I do for a living, that is exactly what I will tell them. When I look at my child in a few months time, I will know that I have laid the foundations for a new career and fundamentally their future. What more could I ask for?

Opening Image:  Parchment Place
Second Image: NonStopQuotes.Com
Final Image: Mixedmarriages.wordpress.com
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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rubyslippers
    Nov 30, 2012 @ 21:36:38

    Keep on following your dream and doing what you are good at. Just remember me when you are famous! : ) xxx

    Well done! X

    Reply

  2. Fire Fairy
    Dec 04, 2012 @ 19:40:56

    I’m really excited for you – for both the arrival of your baby and for your writing! You are wonderful, and an inspiration. Lots of love xx

    Reply

  3. alphabetgames
    Dec 05, 2012 @ 11:59:00

    Thank you both for your kind and encouraging comments. It really means a lot. x

    Reply

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