Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Gallery: Motherhood

This week's theme for The Gallery is Motherhood.  Not only is it impossible to pick ONE photo that's supposed to sum up what motherhood means to me, all the entries are being printed off for an exhibition! 

It's been fantastic looking back at all the photos we've taken of Jake.  As it's about motherhood, the photos of Jake and I together have mostly been taken by Paul.  I couldn't pick just one, but the one above is my favourite.  To me the most important thing about being a mother is the relationship I build and have with Jake, and the heart of it is pure joy.  The joy of being alive, of being together, of being able to know one another, and most of all, the joy of loving and being loved. 

Here are some other photos I couldn't resist throwing in too...

The joy of co-sleeping.
Here, Jake is a week old.  When we fell asleep, he'd
been more in the middle of the bed.  Paul tells me
that within 20 minutes, he was firmly wedged in my armpit.
He still does that now except with a headbutt thrown in.

Do you see that cheeky grin on his face?
This is just after he chucked some blackberries at me.
What you don't see is the big chunk that went down my cleavage.

This photo I did take myself. 
It was August 2009 and shortly before Jake's illness and hospitalisation.
It was one of the last times I was able to breastfeed him.

The whole time that I breastfed Jake,
I had no qualms about letting him fall asleep on the breast.
Really, my first year of motherhood consisted of breastfeeding
and then holding him while he slept.
Then I had to stop and he had to sleep on his own.
This was how he often fell asleep in hospital, holding on to my top.

Everything changed when Jake became ill.  It was a nightmare we are still coming to terms with.  But normal took on a new meaning for us.  Now, even through the hardest days when he's driving me up the wall, I'm still grateful.  Because he's here. 
Before Jake arrived, I had vague notions about what being a mother would entail.  Most of them were from scary stories other parents had told me which I tried not to think about because I wanted to live the truth of my own experience. 
It turns out that many of the scary stories are true, but so is this:  it's a cliche, but motherhood really is the best thing that's ever happened to me. 
Thank you Jake, for making me a Mummy.


If I Could Escape . . . said...

Awww, so sorry you've had a hard time of it but that is such a lovely post. x

Ruth @ Love It said...

Wow, what a rollercoaster. I love the picture of the two of you in bed - mirroring each others' pose. And him falling asleep in hospital holding on to you says so much about motherhood.

affectioknit said...

Isn't motherhood just like that...

@jencull (jen) said...

The last one really tugged at my heartstrings. I used to love when my chidren fell asleep after feeding, always the best cuddles and comfort for both of us:) Sorry to hear you have experienced a scary story, things went a little pear shaped for us too but we are adjusting well. Jen

Jax said...

lovely post, particularly like that last pic.

Sian Mummy-Tips said...

Sian - MummyTips / CyberMummy Here...... I've just posted with the info you need in order to get your pic printed for the real life CyberMummy Gallery exhibition courtesy of Photobox.
Do add htp://www.Mummy-tips to your blogroll if you like what you read...