Gosh, isn’t it sunny outside? It’s like the Man from Delmonte has moved to the UK bringing all his tropical goodness with him. How strange it is that I’m feeling unnervingly low at the moment. I keep finding myself feeling like I’m mourning something. I keep finding myself feeling like I’m grieving. I keep finding myself crying at any possible opportunity - appropriate or inappropriate. Every single grinning photo of my son during the first 18 months of his life immediately throws me into floods of tears. I’ve been trying to figure out what all this is about...and I think I’ve finally pinned it down. What I’m feeling is regret.
I regret feeling so unhappy for so long when what I was holding in my arms was a boy full of joy (this is actually my nickname for him - Boy of Joy...it seems to have stuck despite obviously inappropriate abbreviation opportunities). I regret not noticing the moments of delight. I regret not appreciating the endless cuddles. I regret not appreciating the unique sparkles in his eyes. I regret not sharing the awe of his new discoveries. I regret feeling so resentful and hopeless when I should have been cherishing so many moments.
Ahhhh...duh..I’ve just realised the trigger for this. My son turned two a week ago. Not such a little baby any more. So, the inevitable reminiscences and reflections have thrown up a startling truth - I’ve spent the majority of the first two years of my son’s life counting minutes and wondering when things will get easier. When will he start sleeping through the night? When will he start eating properly? When will he stop biting me? When will he stop crying so much? When will I stop crying so much? When will I be able to go to bed...and forget it all.
I feel like I’ve wished away something I’ll never get back. I feel like I’ve been robbed of something, when actually the only culprit was me. PND or no PND, I can’t help feeling like I’ve been so focussed on me and how to make it through, I’ve forgotten or been unable to properly notice my boy. Now that the time has passed, I wish that I could do it all again...but differently this time. And writing that down immediately flings me into confusion, because part of me knows that ultimately, it would not actually be me who’d decide whether I could or could not do it again differently - it’d be the bloody chemicals in my brain, the hormones in my body.
Either way, my fault or not my fault, my little son should have been surrounded by more happiness than he was....and that’s something I will always regret.