The #whenibecameamother campaign from Steph Don’t Buy Her Flowers has been one of the most uplifting, moving and powerful campaigns I've seen on Instagram, so obviously I've loved it.
But - goodness me - I've found it hard to pinpoint when I became a mother.
Having had a miscarriage before I conceived E, I found it very hard to imagine that a baby was going to arrive after 9 months of growing a beautiful bump (and my bump was gorgeous - I dressed it up in figure hugging, summery dresses, and felt like a true goddess.) A goddess: yes. A mother, no.
When E finally emerged after a long and brutal labour I just felt knackered. I knew I loved her, but I was so scared and so very tired. For a few days it felt like I was playing the role of "mum of newborn." Those first few days were a blur of pain, establishing breastfeeding and waiting for "everything to get back to normal."
It was my extraordinary midwife - Sonia (the woman deserves every plaudit going), who helped me realise that I really was a mother, and that I was going to be fine. She came round two days after E was born. I sat there, coccyx bent and damaged, bleeding, crying. I remember this next conversation so clearly:
"Sonia - am I doing it right?" "Doing what, Laura?" "Being a mum?" "How do you feel when you hold her?" "I love her, but I don't want to mess it up."
"then you won't."
And just like, in that moment, that's #whenIbecameamother.
When A arrived I'd known him forever. I kissed him, cried, and couldn't wait to introduce him to E! If we are lucky enough to have another baby I can only begin to imagine the depth of love.