Tuesday, August 2, 2016

All my "friends" are having babies

It's been twenty days since Susie Bubble of Style Bubble last updated her blog, and with good reason too. In her own words she's been a "lazy blogger" and lapsing on deadlines while consuming copious amounts of salt and vinegar crisps since she's been growing a mini-human in her tummy. She announced the news of her pregnancy to the world via Instagram and was received with an outpouring of support. It makes me angry that she chastised herself for not keeping up with her usual pace, when her body and mind are going through one of the most radical changes a person can face. Of course I blame the patriarchy, pushing business-minded women to the extreme causing them to juggle their career and parenthood at the earliest of stages. On the other hand, I'm an empathetic and at times very clucky person and feel incredibly excited for Baby Bubble!

It wasn't that long ago that another inspiring UK fashion blogger and woman of colour, Freddie Harrel also announced her pregnancy and has been celebrating her mom bod with the hashtag #dressthebump. I realise I don't really know these women, at all but their presence online and across social media makes me feel like I do. Hence the rather confusing title of this blog post compounded by the realisation that motherhood now feels like a cool club inhabited by some of my favourite fashion bloggers I hope to join one day. The epiphany that I'm not ready to become a mother comes as no great surprise, but at the moment I've just met the most wonderful man and every day I look forward to his companionship and building each other up.

I've discussed two of my favourite fashion bloggers wearing the baby bump, but I can't have this conversation without talking about Leandra Medine. Through her weekly podcast entitled Monocycle and shared by Man Repeller, Leandra has shared the intimate details of IVF including its effects on her mood as well as the crushing realisation the embryo they had implanted within her womb had not stuck. Tears stung my eyes when I thought of myself in her position, desperate for a child and feeling as though my own body was not able to carry and care for a baby. It means another round of hormone injections to her leg, the mood swings associated with them and the emotional toll this might take on her relationship with her husband. 

Ever since I was a little girl, I've always thought about having kids but I recognised the social and economic inequality between men and women at a very early age. In my mind, it became necessary to become an expert in my field and earn lots of money, because I would eventually need to leave the workforce temporarily in order to raise children. The concept of "having it all" equating to a fulfilling career as well as a family was most likely influenced by my mother but I know this isn't true for everyone. Single and childless women within our society continue to be ostracised, with many unable to process the simple truth a woman can feel complete without a child. If having kids isn't something you aspire towards, then it's wonderful you've already achieved that sense of wholeness (despite the world telling you otherwise). 

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