make pretty with mud

by thankfeldenkrais

From sound sleep a devil always woke.

I was in vicious turmoil,
A yo-yo thrown up and down,
Inconsistently, at speed.
I jolted from bliss to utter despair in mere moments,
I had the swaddled bundle, love and wonderment,
But below the surface grief, shock and trauma played centre stage,
Which I could not overwrite no matter how many times I hit backspace.

Remembering everything, consumed me.

And so did the guilt, for not being able to completely enjoy him,
As a new mother should.
He had survived after all,
I just wasn’t so sure I had.

I found myself loving him immeasurably,
Then gaping wide eyed, blackened with fear,
Wondering when he would start depicting brain damage.

And so would spill more guilt, kicking over a bucket full,
Splashing relentlessly across the room.

Attempting to act the typical new parent,
Desperate to convince myself I had failed nothing.
And walked into parenthood as I intended.

But every dispense of anti-convulsion,
Every tube scratched throaty squawk,
Every fumbled feed,
Every time I woke tearing the sheets sobbing ,
Stamped it more permanently to my being,
We were both damaged by our journey.

My own worst enemy.
The perfectionist left trying to make pretty with mud.


But he is perfection.
And just like that,
Again I trip, spiralling head first in spilt guilt,
Ricocheting across the floor, a trail of remorse dragging behind.