Motherhood – 2.

                    I have heard so many women say, that they were born to be mothers.  I can see it in their eyes, on their faces – they glow at the mere mention of their children. In fact, I have seen it on every mother’s face. Frankly,  I have no words to explain it, but women – mothers – have that look, the know-all-about- kids look, and an overflowing dam of love in those eyes. A look, which I lack. Every time I look into the mirror, I fail to see what I see on their faces, in their eyes. And, then, I deduce that maybe I wasn’t born to be a mother. That explains the goosebumps I had, when I witnessed a delivery  couple days ago.
It was a chance encounter I had, witnessing a new born baby and her mother, being cleaned after the delivery. The scene left me lightheaded. I kept looking away from the mother, and kept looking at the wailing baby, who was trying to hold my finger. And, the first feeling I had was, I sure wouldn’t have been able to go through this! I must sound selfish, isn’t it? As I stood there, in the delivery room, I kept asking myself if I would ever go through all the pain, the stress, to bring a human being into this world.
Would I ever be so selfless? So giving? For the sake of a child – my child? And, as the thoughts raced through my mind, I began to feel my blood pressure going for a dip. I rushed out of the place,  into my world, where there was just me, and my thoughts. Yes, I was right. I really am not cut out to be a mother. I wasn’t born to be a mother. Maybe that is why I even find it difficult sketching babies! Animals – I enjoy sketching. But, babies – I tried. And, failed.
My respect for mothers has risen a thousandfold after witnessing the new mother go through everything she did. And, I have come to the conclusion, that it should be made mandatory for every father to witness the birth of his child. Witness the pains the woman goes through to bring his child into this world. The entire scene haunts me night and day. Yes, it haunts me. And, it makes me imagine the torture those women go through, who have to experience it several times, till the time they bear a son.

Coming back to my world, there are times, when I feel so out of place, when among a group of mothers. They have so much to share about their babies. And, I don’t. I share this here because it is a topic I would rather not share with my life partner. He would never understand! Which man does?! But, yesterday, a chance meeting with the mother of my ‘child’s’ friend left me feeling overwhelmed. I happened to meet  a friend, who is a pet-mother. Just like me. Her ‘son’, Scotch, was my ‘son’, Chikoo’s, best friend! We got talking, and it felt like a dam had broken!
I shared with her Chikoo’s health issues, his growing age, the fear that haunts me night and day as time flies. And, at the end, it felt great! Just sharing my feelings, swapping stories about our babies, made me feel that I did belong somewhere. I did belong to this different group of parents, who had their own different stories to share. I know, there are  people out there, who find the mere thought of ‘being a per-parent’ utterly ridiculous. That bringing up a child and bringing up a pet is poles apart. Yes, it is. But, it is these very different babies, who make women like me feel complete. Feel like mothers, albeit of a different kind!
True. I was not born to be a mother to a human baby. But, I  was born to be a mother to a little, four-legged soul, who filled my heart and my world with the joy I had not known until he arrived. True. I won’t ever know what my mother and every other mother went through. But, I will know what a mother like me goes through just imagining how her life is going to be without the loving bundle of fur, who showers her with endless love, but is blessed with such a short life-span. True, I wasn’t born to be like every other woman in this world. But, I was born to live a different kind of life with my different kind of baby. And, for this, I am thankful. Ever so thankful.

22 Replies to “Motherhood – 2.”

  1. Shilpa, please dont bother about people who feel pet-parents are ridiculous. Raising a pet is like raising a baby. And the pets dont expect anything except our love. And love is all we have to give, isnt it?

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  2. Shilpa, never underestimate yourself, put yourself down or feel guilty for not feeling or doing something. We all are parents- to our kids, our pets, our emotions, our feelings and even to close friends. We take on the mantle of care, gentle discipline and love in all our relationships. Loved the part where you speak about how you felt when you saw childbirth. Powerful and honest. ❤

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  3. Anjali, Ls, Shailaja and Anju, thank you so much, my dear friends, for understanding my feelings. Last night, it was one of those days, when I was at my lowest, comparing myself with others, and going through guilt feelings, which play a havoc on my mind. And, thus this post. SO grateful for the positive reinforcement. I so need it! Hugs to you all! ❤

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  4. It is difficult being different. You find it hard relating to the idea of being a mother to a human-baby… I find it hard relating to the idea of getting into a typical Indian marriage and being the typical Indian wife, daughter-in-law, sister-in-law and whatever-other-in-law!

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  5. I know what you mean. Just remember that ordinary people are products of their environment and fit in. Artists transcend their environment and stand out! So go on do what you believe in! Cheers and Hugs, Shilpa ♥

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  6. Shilpa, I can so relate to your words as I feel the same way, i.e., that I am not meant to be a mother to a child. (Read my last gratitude mention on this list: http://xpressyouressence.blogspot.ca/2015/05/gratitude-list-4-mothers-etc.html). Like you, I was a pet mother for awhile and that felt more to my liking. 🙂 And I like the idea of having every father witness the birthing of their child. Hopefully that would change some things for the better! 😉 '3

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  7. I love my children, Shilpa but I never felt that I was born to be my mother. I loved my niece I remember but I had no such motherhood pangs or feelings gripping me to have children. I think it is perfectly alright not to feel in this manner. After my first child was born, I slowly connected with him. They are so tiny and so fragile. You start feeling protective. Just like you do with your dog. I have one too and he feels no less than my kids to me. What is more important is to be compassionate and a warm human being which you are. I went into motherhood with fears, apprehensions and expectations. I am glad I did. I have loved the journey so far. But, I am still a woman first. A mother is just one of the many roles that I play.

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  8. That was so beautifully put, Rachna! In fact, that does make me feel a lot better about myself! I have realised it that it is not necessary to feel certain things. It's just what I felt that day when I witnessed the delivery. I felt that this was the biggest moment in a woman's life, and I had not experienced it, neither did I pine for it. But, after reading all your comments, and after some self talk, I have come to accept that whatever role I play, I am doing it to the best of my ability, as well as enjoying it immensely. And, that is all that matters, right? 🙂

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  9. I for one wasn't born to be a mother. In fact we never did want kids for a long long time and we were pretty happy in our lives. I know what you mean when you say you feel out of place when women talking just about kids. I had years and years of that. I would often find myself sitting with the men where talk was more non-child related. However I can also empathise with moms being one now – children do consume your thoughts completely. You are a pet-mom too so you will know what I mean. I happened to be watching the film Marley and Me today and I realised it doesn't matter who you adopt – all we need is someone to love us back unconditionally – kids or pets – it's pretty much the same thing.

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  10. That is so right, Tulika! All we need is to have someone to love us back, unconditionally. And, that is what I get from my furry baby! So, yes, I am blessed! 🙂
    Thank you for sharing a little bit of your life! ❤

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  11. We should meet Shilpa. I am not a mother or a pet mother. I have immense respect to both but I am not meant to be either. My super close friend had a C section and I was by her side until we was taken to the OT but trust me, I was shell shocked and scared. That moment, I knew it cannot be me. Today, I don't know what will happen in future but if given a choice I think I can raise a kid but not deliver one. It's just not possible for me. Thank you for putting this all here and being so honest!

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  12. I don't really have anything to add in value to this comment.. since I'm still a college going kiddo!
    But yes, I can tell you one thing: Do write about it, and express your feelings out loud.
    Trust me, it works. 🙂

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  13. Thank you so much, Parul! I have realised one thing, Parul, that it is better to be honest about your feelings, whatever they may be. At times, I do feel selfish, I feel how I can just think about myself, but then I think that if it had to happen, it would. And, because it has not happened, then it wasn't meant to be. May be that is why I couldn't stand there in the delivery room and imagine myself going through all that pain.

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