true tales from the gates of the underworld


An Open Letter to my Second-Born Child
May 1, 2016, 8:06 pm
Filed under: Life | Tags: , , ,

Dear Second-Born,

I am sorry.

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I am sorry for every time you have been overlooked – when you were born, each birthday, christmas, when you started school – by people because you are not my First-Born.
When instead of a visit and presence, you received a card in the post with money to buy yourself a present.
When instead of a visit and a card, your first day of school went unmentioned.
When your siblings received their ideal gifts at christmas, and yours was clearly an afterthought, as you grew out of that interest over 2 years ago. They would have known this, if they had come to see you, or asked about you.
I am sorry that they still don’t know how to spell your name.
I am sorry if you have ever noticed these things.
I am sorry if you have ever felt like you don’t matter. You matter.

I am sorry for every suggestion that we don’t care as much about you as we do about the First-Born, or the Youngest. I am sorry that people believe you suffer from Middle-Child syndrome, because they don’t understand Sensory Processing Disorder, or Autism, and all they see is some of your behaviour, separated from who you are.
I am sorry that people do not realise how awesome you really are because they would rather hold on to their stereotypes about middle-children.

I am sorry for every time I asked you to go back to your bed at night, because there is not enough room for 4 of us in our bed.
I am sorry for every time I couldn’t play Minecraft with you because I was dealing with the Youngest.
I am sorry that sometimes even I expect you to act like a neurotypical child, just because my patience is running thin.

I wish you knew how fiercely protective we feel of you.
I wish you knew that we love all three of you more than you will ever be able to comprehend, in your own different ways.
I hope you remember the times I have sat up with you at night, massaging your legs because your joints hurt, holding you because you had a bad dream, watching you breathe because you were ill.
I hope you remember that we always came to you when you called for us, the same as we always came for your siblings, because to us, you all matter the same.

I hope you may one day realise that the love we feel for your siblings does not subtract from the love we feel for you, but rather that it multiplies, as seeing you all together is just the best thing in the world.



Rainbow hair
May 13, 2015, 8:37 pm
Filed under: Life | Tags: , , , , , ,

At some point during my pregnancy with Rainbow, I stumbled across some photos of rainbow hair.
In the beginning I said I love it but would never do it. Then slowly I started to research, and a couple of months ago I worked up the courage to ask a very clever friend to help me dye my waist length, thick and dark brown hair into a rainbow.
She agreed, so I ordered the dye (Directions, in Plum, Midnight, turquoise, apple, daffodil, mandarin, pillarbox red and cerise), she would provide the bleach, and I the pizza.

4.5 hours later, the results surpassed anything I could have imagined.
My hair didn’t totally take to the bleach, it only went to a light brown/dark blonde, but the colours are bright and the coverage is totally even (there are a lot of reflections in the photo but it’s the best I’ve managed to get).

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Becoming a more peaceful parent
July 28, 2014, 9:51 pm
Filed under: Life | Tags: , , , , ,

Sometimes it’s hard to see past how much our children have grown, and remember that they are still young and fresh in the world.
Still tiny, in the grand scheme of things.
Still without much of the knowledge and understanding that we take for granted every day.
Easily overwhelmed, sometimes frustrated or scared by things that seem trivial to us.

I’m challenging myself to repeat to myself, every time I find myself getting annoyed with the whinging, clinging, clamor for help or things, night time wakings, mess…life – “You are only tiny. I’m your grownup, you love and trust me. Breathe, let go of the rising anger.”
I started this a few days ago, in the hope that we may have a fairly peaceful and fun 6 weeks this summer, despite both my husband and I having to work full time while the children are around.

This evening I managed to get through bedtime without shouting, and all three children were in their beds, asleep by 8pm – something that has not happened for a long time.
I had to remind myself that they were not trying to annoy me by asking for drinks, thinner blankets, less light in their room then more light. Stories, toys, trips to the toilet.

Now, I can enjoy some guilt free peaceful silence.

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They told me
February 15, 2014, 1:10 pm
Filed under: birth, Life | Tags: , , , ,

They told me… 
…I couldn’t
…I wasn’t allowed
…they would do
…they don’t do

“They” “told” me…
One syllable words that take away power and makes women hand over responsibility. 
Words that make me want to shout “please inform yourself rather than be told”, that make me angry at “them”, and that break my heart a little for every woman who says “they told me… but I don’t want to… but they won’t let me.”
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Looking forward
December 12, 2013, 2:15 pm
Filed under: birth, Life | Tags: , , , , , ,

Today I’m mostly grieving for the end of our our pregnancy journey. I feel totally fulfilled with the experiences of my last two births, I think our family is complete now, so with today’s day 3 hormone surge I’m saying goodbye and looking to the future – I have learned so much as a person and as a doula from my experiences. I also know that my heart is firmly anchored in the “birth world”, for lack of a better expression.
I know for sure that there is no other area that I would want to support women in as much as coming out of the other side of their birth feeling healed, strong, empowered or just plain happy.
My experiences won’t disappear, and they will never lose significance, they will stay with me for the rest of my life, and I will always be able to draw strength from them.
I truly feel like I looked the Goddess in the face.
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Rainbows
December 12, 2013, 2:13 pm
Filed under: birth, Life | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Our Rainbow came into the world on monday morning, and all 9.5lbs of her are perfect.
Her birth was the most intense, beautiful, testing, divine, empowering experience of my life.
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One
November 17, 2013, 11:42 am
Filed under: birth, Life, Poetry | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

I believe that birth is safe.
I believe that my baby should get to choose his or her birthday.
I believe that I am the Goddess, and I believe that you are the Goddess.

I am part of the natural world, and the natural world is part of me.
I am the leaf on the wind.
I am the wind.
I am the drop of water in the river.
I am the river.
I am the bank that contains the river.
I am the sea.
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I am love.
I am patience.
I am energy.

I am one with all women, past, present and future.

I breathe and open.
My baby guides me as I guide my baby earthside.

I am trust.
I am balance.
I am time.

I do not need to wait, because I am.