Dear Mommy

You sat in my house yesterday and we talked. There, at the table, we talked about our children, our businesses, our passions. But when I began showing you/talking about a really neat video, you noticeably became rigid, tight lipped - closed.

You crossed your arms protectively and turned your knees away from me.

We had arrived. I knew it, you felt it. My heart broke. Someone else's birth experience offended you.

It came out in halting conversation that you had been hurt by a friend, indeed, you had lost a friend, 8 years ago over nursing your baby. After being set up for failure by an uneducated nurse who thought, in the second feeding, you needed to supplement with formula - your nursing days were numbered. After weeks of angst, difficulties, and never once simply loving the bonding of nursing as it was nipple shielded, catheter-formula supplemented, and 'arranged' - you chose to stop.

Your friend, an avid nursing advocate, was angry - and chose words that drove an irreparable wedge into your relationship.

Where that left us on this day, 8 years later?

"I don't have a problem with what you do. What I have a real problem with is how you all make people feel. If you want to have babies without pain medication, it is fine with me, but I'm an epi girl"

Breastfeeding and birthing. 8 years later. Who made you hurt from your choice of birthing? We have been friends for a year now. And this hurt has never surfaced. I have replayed how the conversation moved into these realms over and over, and I still cannot see where it turned....

Who made you hurt?

You had planned on an epidural. After receiving it, your little one's heart rate plummeted, and you were given a cesarean. That is your story. Concise and free of the emotional attachment that usually accompanies birth stories. If you had another baby, you say, you would still have another epidural.

I pulled up a video on a woman's journey through PPD/PTSD after her 'emergency' cesarean. You asked heatedly, wryly, disbelieving:

"Obviously she didn't want the cesarean. So what is she claiming here?"
"So she blames her PPD and PTSD on her cesarean?"

The defensiveness, bitterness, and anger were palpable. Who hurt you?

Would you allow yourself to accept it if you were told?

Oh how I hurt for you. First, for what was taken from you. Second, for what you are not yet able to allow yourself to accept. And last, because I know I cannot bring you to that place where you can confront this old wound and really begin healing. This is a journey that you have to be willing to take the first step by yourself. Only then can I come to your side and walk with you.

My heart broke. 8 years...

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