I’ve decided that I’m going to re-write the past.
This morning I was in the kitchen, making coffee and listening to my little family arguing over which DVD to put on the TV. I was preparing for another run of The Wizard of Oz or something similar when I was greeted with my own voice! Home videos, always good for a laugh and a merry trip down memory lane. Walking to the living room, I heard myself laughing, talking in a silly voice and exclaiming lovingly about a beautiful baby. Ooh, I thought. Videos of Eva when she was a baby! If you can guess what’s coming next, well done- I didn’t.
It wasn’t Eva. It was her brother. And we were smiling. We were laughing. We were having a , happy family time. I sat and watched me and my family being, well… a family. A happy one.
If I could’ve shook my head and rattled my eyes I would’ve. Wasn’t this DVD supposed to be showing a stressed out, anxious mum with a baby that never stopped crying and a daughter who never got any attention because of the aforementioned? Why was the family on the TV so happy, when all I can remember is tears?
I realised that over the months I had become so fixated on the bad times, the hard times and the times when I felt like such a failure. Every flash back, every nightmare, every sleepless night is inprinted on my brain. Each time I wondered what I was doing wrong, why I couldn’t help my boy and why I was cheated of the birth I was meant to have… each time, those memories scratched an eternal we woz ere in my mind. The dark days had become so dark that they overclouded all the good times. Because, you know what? There were good times! I remember them, I’ve seen them in photos, on DVDs and in letters from daughter to mother. I see the good times in my children’s smiles as they sleep. I see the good times in the way that they play together and hug me and love me. I see now that there were more good times than bad times.
So I’m going to re-write the past. At least, I will try. When my mind wants to go back to his birth, I will make myself remember the positives: when Eva came to see her brother for the first time; when my dinner turned up looking so ridiculously un-appetising that we just had to giggle like children. When my mind wants to go back to the endless nights pacing the floor with a screaming baby and the hosptial trips, doctor appointments and fears that there might actually be something really wrong with him… all I need to do is look at him. He’s here. How many women, who went through what I did- and worse- can’t actually say that? At last, I think I can accept that dreaded phrase I heard so much: at least he is here and happy. And we’re all happy. We’re re-writing the past.