Being a mum is the most natural thing in the world. But you don't want to do it too young, so we'll put you on the pill before you have your first serious boyfriend. It'll help with those cramps too.
Being a mum is the most natural thing in the world. But you don't want to mess up your studies, so we'll keep you on the pill, even though you're practising safe sex. It'll help with those cramps too, because the painkillers don't.
Being a mum is the most natural thing in the world. But you don't want to screw up your first proper job, so we'll keep you on the pill, even though you're not in any sort of relationship. Cramps? You don't have those any more, do you?
Being a mum is the most natural thing in the world. But you don't want a bump on your wedding pictures, do you? We'll keep you on the pill, you wouldn't want to be bleeding on your honeymoon, after all.
Being a mum is the most natural thing in the world. So finally, you come off the pill. You don't so much have cramps as want to claw your own uterus out with a rusty teaspoon. After missing 3 days work a month for 6 months due to haemorrhaging so badly you pass out, your employers start to lose patience. But still, every month, without fail, along comes good old Aunt Flo. Your friends announce their own pregnancies and elderly relatives start asking questions about when you'll follow suit.
You visit the doctor. He gives you painkillers. You become an expert in prescription and over the counter painkillers, their interactions and side effects. You become the person in the office that everyone comes to when they've got a headache as you have a better supply than the local chemist, on the days you're there, anyway.
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You cry. You go to the doctor and cry some more. Eventually he listens, and refers you to the hospital. You get your appointment letter, and turn up on time. For a scan. In the ante-natal unit. Surrounded by happy, glowing pregnant women stroking their growing bumps. You cry as they scan your still empty womb. And you still miss three days of work a month.
The specialist talks you through your options. Someone decides that surgery is the best step. You don't know who, you're too busy holding back the tears. You go in for surgery. The ward adjoins the maternity ward, and you spend a sleepless night before surgery listening to the cries of other people's newborns, and drift off to sleep somewhere around 5. At 6 you're woken by a nurse with an evil glint in her eye and a single blade razor, who instructs you to have a shower and give yourself the kind of shave usually favoured by porn stars.
After surgery you learn that you're going to spend the next 6 months having a happy fun free trial temporary menopause, to allow your insides to heal. Someone sticks a needle in your bum, and slaps a plaster on your thigh. You spend three days a month in bed with a migraine. Work remain unimpressed with your attendance.
A friend announces their pregnancy with their second child. You cry. That same friend loses their baby during childbirth. You cry again. You cry for them and their loss. But you also cry for yourself. You're actually jealous. At least they can *get* pregnant in the first place. You hate that you feel this way. You cry because you're a bad person, feeling jealous of someone who has just lost their baby, for goodness sake.
Finally, they stop the injections, the patches, and you're left to nature. And when you're in what the specialist has said is the absolute last chance saloon, a miracle happens. Somehow you're growing a new life inside you. Work are less than enthusiastic, but they've not seen much of you lately anyway. Pregnancy is hard, childbirth traumatic. But at the end of it, you're left with the baby you so wanted. Who doesn't come with an instruction manual, and has a new challenge for every day of your life. Who turns your world upside down in ways you hadn't even considered. Your friend goes on to have more children, and never even knows about your reaction.
Being a mum is the most natural thing in the world. But why did no-one say it would be so hard?