Ok, so this is belated, but better late then never!
I wanted to share with you the guest blog post I wrote for MS UK website last week. It's all about what Mother's Day means to me. Enjoy :)
Mother’s Day is upon us, and it’s the time of year when I reflect on how lucky I am.
I’m the mother to two beautiful children, but it hasn’t always been the easiest ride.
I was diagnosed with MS when I was 18 years old, which really put a spanner in the works when it came to making future plans. Back then I didn’t have access to the information I do now, so I felt very much alone. The future seemed daunting and scary.
With that in mind, I couldn’t even imagine having a family and being strong enough to cope with everything motherhood throws at you. How would I be able to cope with labour when I was so fatigued? How could I cope with night feeding? Broken sleep? And even just physically carrying a child all the time? It seemed terrifying to say the least. So for years I resided myself to the fact that I would never be a mother.
It’s only when I reached my late twenties that me and my husband decided to take the plunge and start a family. All of the doubts were still there, but the thought of never being a mother gradually overtook any fears I had. And I’m so glad we did it.
It’s very tough at times, and my MS undoubtedly gets in the way, but in those early days I was amazed at how much my body adapted. Of course I was still fatigued, but I coped better than expected, and with help and support we found a way around it. I rested whenever I could, and though we didn’t get out much and socialise, I was content that we were doing what was best for us.
For all the tough times, motherhood is one of the most rewarding experiences I will ever have. I remember the overwhelming pride I had in myself for just getting through labour, and delivering this beautiful creature into the world safely. I knew it was going to be tougher for me as a Mum, but because of this even the smallest achievements had a greater significance for me.
I never think of Mother’s Day as being a celebration of me as a Mum though, but rather a time to thank other mothers for their help. My own mother. My mother-in-law. My friends and family members who are mothers. They help to take the strain when things become too much, and we stick together as a family. I want to thank them because they make coping with two children a joy instead of a worry. I truly couldn’t do it without them, and they make me the mother I am today. A happy mother who, despite the MS, feels confident enough to deal with the challenges motherhood brings.