Another wonderful evening with my god daughter Sophie. She is developing and growing so quickly, each week that goes by she is so different, blossoming more and more into her own person. I love her so much. Nights like tonight are precious. I cuddle her and all my fears and anxieties about being a mum disappear. She is utterly precious, an important part of the beautiful little community Rose and I are building around us.
A couple of days ago I was really struggling. I painted for 6 hours on Sat and Sun, free to the public at big days at the zoo, flat out speed painting which left me with severe joint pain for days. Rose and I got home on the Sunday, only to immediately call an ambulance as Rose was experiencing chest pain on her left side, radiating into her left arm. An anxious overnight stay in the ER ensued, then a trip to her GP the next day. The end result was positive, a painful condition unrelated to her heart, which can be treated when attacks occur. I was now seriously sleep deprived and in pain. I got home to discover that I’d forgotten to empty the cat litter tray the night before. All the clean clothes in my room had cat pee on them, and clothes stacked in the dining room were covered in cat poo. When I went to turn on my computer to catch up on all the admin I’d been unable to get to so far that week, it died and refused to boot.
I sat in the backyard and wept, utterly overwhelmed by my life and the insane optimism of planning to have a child when I have a chronic pain condition and mental health problems, to raise a child on welfare, when I feel so inadequate to the task at times.
Today I am so far from that place. I cannot do this alone and I know that. I am finding the most amazing people, this incredible supportive community of other beautiful, at times also fragile and wounded people. There are days I can’t remember that I have friends now, and that they love me. Other days I realise that the lonely years are behind me. I have arrived. I have family, friends, love, hope for a beautiful future. A world in which it’s okay to be mentally ill, safe to be gay, accepted to have disabilities. When I hug Sophie and think how lucky I am to be her godmum, I think this is a good world to bring a child into. This child would be very, very loved.