For such a long time I’ve wanted to write about my mum, and it’s only after becoming mum that I’ve realised how important her place in the world was. You could say this little blog is like therapy for me and while expressing my grief in a very public way might be frowned upon by some, there’s something so hugely liberating that about it. These are the words I’ve never been able to say to anyone and hopefully whoever is reading them will be able to take them and use them in a way that makes them appreciate their own mum or their role as a mother.
Since losing my amazing mum a few years ago my thoughts have always been about my own loss, how much I miss her and how life would be if she were still around but today it’s not just me – it’s peanut too. Everyone looks at her and says how she can see me and my younger sister’s image in her (this is by no means a bad thing... my sister is gorgeous!) we both look like my mum and so when I look at her, I see my mum’s image too, and while it’s comforting and a lovely reminder that in some way, she’s still around, it’s also a painful reminder that she isn’t. For as long as I remember, mum always wanted to be a Grandma; something that has often been said when family have visited us. Even when my dad came to see a pretty little newborn Peanut in hospital, he said how happy he was but also so sad that mum wasn’t here to enjoy the moment with us all. You could be romantic and say that she’s watching us from afar but who knows?
Every woman I have ever known to have a baby has always turned to their mum whenever something happened and they needed advice. Whether it’s ‘what do I do when she’s sick?’ and ‘Is this normal? Surely his poo shouldn’t be that colour!’ I had the internet and The Oracle; both a huge help and a lifesaver at times. But the biggest realisation that my Mum really was such a precious person came when I started to experience all of the milestones – the first smile, the first giggle and the first words, Dada and of course Mama – the first thing I wanted to do was call her and say ‘Mum!! Guess what Caitlin just did?!’ instead, I sit there and smile to myself knowing how excited and proud she would have been too. It’s at times like these that I fall deep into thought and remember times where I did something to make her proud; her reaction was priceless with a huge beaming grin and her eyes would shine. Peanut has those eyes too. But it’s also these moments when I feel gagged and bound because I had the privilege of sharing this with my own mum so cruelly and unfairly taken away from me. It feels as though I’m not allowed.
I’ll not know for a while yet how much I mean to Peanut; I can only believe in myself that I’m her world and I’m the person that she wants when she’s upset or scared or just wants a cuddle, but sometimes I feel like I’m still a baby myself. I’m an independent person, I’m strong when I need to be but when I’ve been hurt, treated badly or I’m upset all I want is my mum. But I can’t have her. I can’t run to her for a cuddle. The feeling of being alone is quite overpowering sometimes and even though I’m so blessed with my sisters, my Dad and Peanuts Daddy; not having your mum is like no feeling you can describe – this is why I want to be there for my little girl when she needs me.
As the saying goes, ‘being a mum is the most rewarding job in the world’ and its 100% true. You appreciate how important and unbelievably life changing that little person is when he or she is in your hands. But for me, becoming mum is something else – it’s filled that gaping hole that was vacant for those few years that my Mum left. Peanut has quite completed me and I hope that until the day that she becomes a mother of her own, I complete her too.