Thoughts from Thursday's Child

Thursday's Child has far to go

A hidden heart

on October 22, 2014

We lived in a remote area away from family and friends when we had our first child. I struggled learning how to be a wife and a mother without family support while my husband worked shift work.

There was a fabulous Child Health nurse who held a weekly morning tea for new mums. It was the only social event I attended for months. She would make us sandwiches and sweets, hold the babies, chat with us and would always ask “what have you done for yourself this week?”

At that stage, my greatest accomplishment was having a shower and getting to her weekly morning teas but I couldn’t let the others know that – they were all capable, accomplished mothers with perfect children so I hid my heart.

Have you noticed how often people hide their feelings, their pain, their struggles?

Why do we do that?  What does it accomplish aside from isolating us from those who might be able to help?

It took the birth of our second child  two and half years later to highlight the postnatal depression cloud I had been living under. I hid my heart, my struggles, my insecurities. I mistakenly thought it was just me. Everyone else coped with being a new mum, adjusting to parenthood and I was left behind.

It was a lie. I was not alone. I was not a bad mother. When the struggle in my heart was revealed, my world changed. As I learnt about myself and my child, parenthood became manageable and eventually a joy.

Now, when I see the hearts of new mums, I recognise some of my own insecurities. I offer words of encouragement, take time to make them sandwiches and sweets, hold the baby and ask ‘”what have you done for yourself this week?” I also see their hearts when they can’t answer, and I know how to answer that call too.

I will see with my heart.

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