I am not the woman I used to be. I am better. I am a butterfly.
A bold and proud statement I honour as I reflect on the last few years.
We can be so incredibly hard on ourselves with this whole parenthood gig that we forget to appreciate everything in front of our eyes for exactly what is and all that will become of it. We are so vulnerable, it’s easy to become overwhelmed.
Just like a butterfly we are reborn into different lifecycles that we must strive and adapt to the best we can.
A year and a half ago my husband and I decided that It was our time again to restart the lifecycle. We had accomplished so much with the birth of our first born, the wedding of our dreams, building our very first home and landing the jobs we had always hoped for. We were ready, or so I thought…
The unfortunate part was that we didn’t even realise just how far we had come as we embarked on the journey of infertility.
Why wasn’t this working out for us? Everything else was?
Why was our first so easily conceived?
Why us?
I reflect on this time as the Pupa stage of a butterfly’s lifecycle. The stage where they shut off and stop feeding. For me personally I stopped feeding my soul. I lost myself or who I thought I was for that matter. It was better to be invisible than to talk about how I was feeling.
One day a switch clicked in my head that we were not ready to bring life into this world. How selfish of us to do so when we were already ignoring the fact that our life was so incredible for what it was and yet we sat here with questions. Its from that day forward that I refused to ask myself questions. They came with doubt, fear and negativity. Instead of asking yourself questions I beg you to be present and to feel emotions without blame.
A butterfly can sense a safe leaf to lay her eggs on by tasting the leaf with the tastebuds on the soles of her feet. She doesn’t ask everyone around her for their opinions/approval nor does she sit back and question her every move, she simply trusts the process.
It was through these 18 months that I became my very own butterfly. I felt the shift. I realised my daughter was conceived so easily so that I would have her by my side through this time. I changed the way I parented her. I was so truly grateful for my life and to be her mother. The moment I let go of the questions and replaced them with gratitude and answers was the moment my life became wholesome.
I sit here on my couch with a 36-week belly very close to the keyboard as I sip on my tea and my baby girl sleeps after a fun morning with friends at the library.  I sit here knowing just how many beautiful days we have ahead of our family and that this is just the beginning for us.
I have no questions. I have love, gratitude and hope and that will always be enough for me.
Shay Mcdowall


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