I think we’ve reached ‘The Upward Turn’ in our journey through the 7 stages of grief. I mean I didn’t cry the other day when Theon asked me what my name was. Not even when I realised I had officially become ‘Mum’. And not to undermine depression or the loss of a loved one (we’ve suffered our fair share this year and prior). But the similarities in the loss of who you deemed yourself to be is much like losing an old friend.
STAGE 1: SHOCK & DENIAL
You may deny the reality of the loss of your ‘cool’. Shock provides emotional protection from the overwhelming reality that you are now a small person’s snack bitch!
STAGE 2: PAIN & GUILT
As the shock wears off, it is replaced with the suffering of unbelievable pain. Mainly from having to co-sleep and contort your body to fit around smaller versions of yourself. Despite the fact that you distinctly remember, ticking the ‘sleep training’ box when deciding how you would parent during your first trimester. It is important that you experience the pain fully, and not hide it. Don’t avoid it, escape it or dull it with copious amounts of coffee and chocolate! You may have feelings of remorse over things you should have done when single and had an active social life.
STAGE 3: ANGER & BARGAINING
Frustration gives way to anger, and you may lash out at your partner and blame them for getting you…up the duff. Please try to control this, as permanent damage to your relationships is imminent. Now is the time to attempt gaining some form of control over the level of collateral damage, your life choices have created.
STAGE 4: “DEPRESSION”, REFLECTION, LONELINESS
Just when your friends may think you should be getting a life, a long period of sad reflection will likely overtake you. “Why the hell did I ever think mom jeans were funny/ironic?”, “why won’t my boobs agree on a direction to face?”, “will my thighs ever refrain from chaffing!?” This is a normal stage of grief, so do not be “talked out of it” by well-meaning outsiders.
Encouragement from others is not helpful and likely to trigger hormonal rage. During this time, you finally realise the true magnitude of your loss; hair loss, loss of libido. The inability to ever again wear heels without your feet turning to well risen dough. You may isolate yourself on purpose, reflect on things you did with your old girl friends and focus on your Facebook Memories feed.
STAGE 5: THE UPWARD TURN
As you start to adjust to life without any of form of personal hygiene, your life becomes a little calmer and more organised. Your physical symptoms lessen, and your “distinct smell” begins to lift, slightly.
STAGE 6: RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH
As you become more functional, your mind starts working again. You will find yourself seeking realistic solutions to problems posed by life. Like the endless uses of an oversized, long sleeved top: Nose wiper, kids play tent, camel toe cover! You will start to work on practical and financial problems. And reconstruct yourself and your life without the need of a hand bag or a monthly Grazia prescription.
STAGE 7: ACCEPTANCE & HOPE
During this, the last of the seven stages in this grief model, you learn to accept and deal with the reality of your situation. Acceptance does not necessarily mean instant happiness. Given the pain and turmoil you experienced during labour, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled wee’er YOU once were. But you will find a way forward. You will start to actually plan things for the future. Alcohol-free, child orientated, fun things. Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost social life without crying. You will once again anticipate some good times to come, and yes, even find joy again in the experience of being a toddlers personal loo roll holder.
Congratulations you made it through!
Note: This is a parody of the 7 STAGES OF GRIEF Through the Process and Back to Life and is in no way meant to offend only simply find humour in some of life’s hardships. Life is hard (whether you’re a mum or not), but we shouldn’t forget to laugh a little (or a lot where possible)!