As previously mentioned in my last post, baby massage had come around. The little green notification light screamed at me that Märta, my midwife, had tried to call me four times. I swipe away the task bar and roll out of bed.
Eryn is sprawled in the middle of the bed that we share (poor Patrick goes on a single bed now, beside the double!) smiling at me. Such a happy, beautiful child. . I’m reminded every morning that even when I don’t feel I have accomplished anything but nappies, feeds and cups of tea that my children are my happiness as I am theirs, that they – above all else, are my joy.
I feed Eryn with one eye watching the time with dread. We needed to go soon if we were going to make it on time. . I get dressed. I prepped my (new and bigger) clothes last night so they’re ready to rock and I’ve already changed Eryn. She’s fed now and in the sling , so we leave for the bus . Now my throat is dry and my hands are wet with sweat, and I want so badly to turn back.. But I don’t.
We arrive at the bus stop and Eryn is screaming, loudly. She is a wonderfully natured baby, but she does I must confess have a particular dislike for the bus and absolutely detests car travel. Most odd.
I stand bouncing with her, patting her bum, shush-shushing, praying she stops screaming. My head is now pounding, my ears have a high pitched whine and I feel dizzy. Just as I’m about to leave, to go back home because “f*#k it, I can’t f&*king do it!” is sweeping over me, the bus comes. I take a deep breath, look up to the sky with what I’m sure was a pleading expression, and step on board.
Eryn half whinges for the duration of the six minute bus ride. I’m busy focusing on the “next stop” announcements, I need to get off this bus. My head feels fuzzy, thick almost and my mouth tastes of metal, like when I would sometimes put a 2p piece in my mouth as a child. Coppery, burned.
I arrive outside the clinic, the bus drops us at the door. I can see the group of buggies parked outside, each one fancier than the next..and all very Swedish looking.
I stand outside the door, my head feels huge now, like a big giant balloon bobbing around on my neck. My eyes feel constricted, I want to run, but now ten sets of eyes are on me..including Martas.
She beckons me in and I tentatively step forward . My mind begins screaming at me “I’m sweating , please God don’t let them smell that I’m sweating.. Breathe in, smile less, take up less room. Stay quiet” . I sit down between two mums and pray to God that Eryn behaves herself for just this one hour.
She does behave. . She gives me a big smile as I lay her on the mat and I breathe, slowly. I can feel every breath entering and exiting, I focus on Eryns face and I don’t lift my eyes. I’m fine. I’m fine .
Then it starts. . The introducing. I’m third in the circle and my heartbeat gets louder and louder in my ears. Thump thump thump. My legs are shaking, it’s my turn. And then, just like that, something amazing happened..
“Hej . . Jag heter Siobhan och mitt barn heter Eryn. Vi bor i Mölndal men jag kommer från England . . “. The harsh whistling in my ears stopped . I looked up and found Marta with my eyes, she was smiling.
Everyone said ” hej” back to me and the lady beside me took her turn. My back was wet through and somewhere along the lines Eryn had dozed to sleep in my arms. I was amazed at myself, it came so naturally, effortless almost. I grinned up at the ceiling and sighed “Thank you”.
The end of the session drew in and as I stood to leave, I felt a tap on my shoulder. . The lady from beside me was standing front of me, smiling. She wondered, did I want to go for a walk with the babies sometime? I was aloof.
People wanted to walk…with me? Wanted to be friends? I was taken a back , but I very happily exchanged numbers with her and looked forward to some company.
I went home, so proud of myself . I had done everything I believed I couldn’t, everything my mother in law had told me I shouldn’t..and I felt good.
Since the massage session I’ve been in touch with my new contact and will see her again this week, things are slowly getting better, hopefully with time I will too.
Over and out,
Little photo of the set up for baby massage 😊