​The pain of remaining childless never fully goes away

Here are the musings of being a woman without children and what I didn’t get to experience. It is only now in my late 50’s that I am finding words for how it has felt for me not being a mother.
 
These words are straight from the heart with no filter.
 
This is what I dreamt I would have for years, even well after I was told I physically could no longer bear children. I had a few big sobs with tears streaming down my face. Then I simply got on with life. There was acceptance but no healing around the pain and grief of remaining childless.
 
Now looking back I can see that it was so painful, I couldn’t bear working on this even with a professional. In addition, it wasn’t suggested to me either. I was so disconnected from myself and felt so lonely. What I did was keep my days full running a business. So here I am now finally allowing the words to pour out on what I have missed out on.
 

Moments of joy of having a child

The moment she realises she is pregnant
The excitement of telling her partner, family, and friends
Feeling the baby grow
Hearing its heartbeat
Seeing the image on the ultrasound
Watching it develop and grow in utero
The excitement of wondering is it a girl or a boy.
Who will it look like or resemble?
Finding and giving them their name.
What will the colour of their hair and eyes be?
Going into labour and giving birth.
Knowing the change of body and pain as worth it
The first moment you set eyes once you have given birth.
That rush of pure love, joy, and ecstasy
The newness of having to care and be responsible of caring for another human being.
The sense of fierce love and protection.
Taking your baby home.
Wondering how will you cope?
Are you doing the right thing?
The maternal instincts kicking in.
But are you doing it right?
Gazing into your child’s face as it feeds on your breast.
The sweet smell of their skin and hair.
Looking into deep into their eyes so innocent and dependent.
Learning to understand the different sounds they make and what they mean.
Moments of not feeling sure and frightened.
Celebrating milestones – rolling over, sitting up, lifting their head up, getting ready to take their first step, taking their first step, saying their first word, hearing them say ‘Mum’ for the first time.
 

Allowing myself to feel the pain of remaining childless

I am only now allowing myself to grieve and feel the deep sense of loss. To share this as it isn’t talked about or considered. Noone asked. I didn’t think to tell.
 
Coming to realise this is not the full reality of it all in any form or manner. It is so easy to create a fantasy around what you haven’t experienced and what you don’t see.
 
I kept it within me not realising to what extent it had and still does affect me as I come to realise that I won’t have the delight of being a grandmother. I didn’t even consider that I had anything to grieve as I had not had a miscarriage or pregnancy loss.
 
This is the beginning of deep healing and finding my place and sense of belonging in this world in my own right.
 
To support you with feelings of loneliness and disconnection, I have created a workbook “Being Yourself – 5 steps going from loneliness to connection where I take you through a gentle and loving process that helped me.
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Love you to share this with anyone you think would benefit from reading this. This is written for all women as I believe so many of us are needing to connect with their experiences in this busy and time-poor world. And leave a comment with your thoughts as there is always more we can learn from each other.
 

meet chantal

Chantal Vanderhaeghen is an intuitive psychotherapist and Reiki master who appreciates walking alongside women willing to take the courageous steps to dare to love themselves after a life-changing experience, specialising in women with unplanned childlessness coming to a place of freedom knowing they are creating their lives in their own way. She lives with her talented man in the Perth Hills and can be found online at www.unfoldyoufreedom.com.au

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