Mother’s Day musings.

I have an unpopular opinion surrounding Mother’s Day.

We’ve just had it in the UK, and there were reams of messages and photos posted on walls so people could see just how much everyone we know loves their mum and how awesome their mums all are. There were treats, trips out to spas and salons, afternoon teas…

I always feel weird when it comes to Mother’s Day. The weirdness is twofold.

One: my mother has been a lot better in recent years. She’s been less angry for no reason, more willing to listen, more supportive and less dismissive… But, when I was a child, she was angry, uncommunicative, resistant to any form of “bad” emotion from any of us (me or my alters) and was emotionally neglectful. We all have deep scars left over from this. Clara is processing hers and not doing well because of it. She always thought it was her fault that she couldn’t make Mummy happy, but it should NEVER be a child’s job to support their mother’s emotions.

Fifteen is angry because she got the brunt of our mum’s anger and fear about having cancer. I think mum would like to believe she was fine and not depressed or frightened at all, but we know better. She worked all through her chemotherapy… As a dance teacher… Can you imagine the physical and mental strain she went through?! She didn’t get help, she didn’t ask for any extra support at work… She powered through, doing me and her a lot of damage on the way.

Sixteen is angry and upset because she never got it with our ex. She knew he was bad news, but didn’t try and get any help with dealing with him. She didn’t try to get any help with mental health stuff apart from an awful Christian counsellor, who backed our abusive ex up. Sixteen is still hurt and feels she doesn’t really have a mother.

All of us want to know why she still continues to work on Mother’s Day. Why she won’t listen when we explain that we have a chronic illness, and it’s not going away. Why she keeps pushing us to get a job, because, apparently, we need one. Sitting around in the house all day is bad for us?! Who knew?!

It hurts so much when she says this, because she’s not really accepted that the Perma-Smile girl is gone and never really existed in the first place. She was a conditioned front, placed strategically in view of everyone so that they would be happy. Mum can’t see that she was a front, and that we are hurt. We can’t even tell her that we are hurt because of her, because she makes the conversation all about her.

We still love her, which is very upsetting,and we know she loves us. It’s just that the love is conditional and always has been, because our grandmother taught her that that’s how love is. You have to earn it, you don’t just deserve it. What a damaging way to raise a family.

This Mother’s Day, I hope everyone hurting like us manages to stay away from the propaganda that you Must At All Costs Love Your Mother. If your mother was abusive, there’s no need to keep loving her. If your mother was absent emotionally, like mine was, it’s ok to love her from a distance and seek love elsewhere. My dog, my husband, and the new cat, not to mention my friends and sister all love me for who I am not what I do. That’s all we wanted from her.

The other is that we could have been a mum, but the miscarriage stopped that. We still hurt. It’s easier now that we named our Fay, but the scar lingers.

Take care, everyone.

Love, 15, 16, Clara and 27.

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Married in twelve days.

Yep. September dawns and we look to the future. Every September, we used to head back to school with sadness in our hearts because of how much we hated academic school. Now, things have very much changed. 

We started dating the ex on 20th September. That was a dreaded date for years: now, we have only really thought of it whilst writing this. The 16th September is where it’s at.

The Dutchman has his waistcoat, gold-flecked and gleaming. Little skull cufflinks will adorn his shirt, and a small femur tie pin will glisten on his tie. My secret, secret dress is almost ready, with only one seam left to fix and it will be perfect. My shoes are from 1920, same as my headdress, family heirlooms from an auntie. I have sewed up the runs in the silk bridal stockings I own (given to me by another auntie), and I know what my something blue is (garter and underwear, shh! Nineteen loves it!).

This is a thrifty, tough month though. We are struggling with finances because the wedding is eating up money like a hungry whale: everything goes in and not much seems to be filtered out. The Dutchman is so calm at the moment, although he admitted he’s been struggling the other day. We stood in the shed, I asking tough questions, until he admitted how stressed he’s been. We all let him know that we love him and that he’s precious, and we are so proud of him.

The wedding preparations are why we have all been so quiet. Once the big day is over, Clara, our newest alter, would like to write you a blog so you know what she’s like. We all love her. She age-slides from eight to eleven, but mostly stays at eight. We baby her a lot, to be honest, and she actually loves it. I think she never really got to be a child from being about eight, and grew up too fast. We have all agreed she can be a child now. 

As for the wedding? I couldn’t sleep the other night because I was so excited. The others were just as bad. I will write a proper update once everything is finished, but for now… Just know that I’m happy, so are the rest of my amazing team, and we are going to marry the guy of our dreams soon. Twelve days.

After the hospital today.

Guess who’s pelvic floor muscles are perfect?! (The physio literally said that!)

Guess who doesn’t have pelvic floor issues?

Sadly, guess who’s back on the diagnostic ladder?

Yes, it’s your favourite system. To be fair, the hospital apologised for the fairly long wait (next appointment is the 1st of August) and our physio was lovely. The internal exam we had also didn’t hurt at all! The physio said we should be very proud of such a huge accomplishment. She’s not wrong.

As always, the Dutchman was there to hold our hand and let us know where we were. 2017, safe with him, living in the Netherlands. 27 managed to surface and do the whole exam with the rest of us, which was good as she managed to stay present through the whole thing. We also managed to have a laugh with the physio and stay calm.
Sadly, after all that anxiety, 27 and our body has absolutely crashed. It’s your friendly neighborhood nineteen writing this for you guys to read. Please let me know if you spot 27 acting really depressed or suicidal, she’s been very ill with that recently and I have to make sure it’s not just sixteen who’s alone in protecting her. 

As for me? I hate seeing 27 so fragile. She fights for us all every day and doesn’t really get much in return. Her anxiety is literally through the roof a lot of the time, and I just want to see her safe. It’s funny, usually she does this for us all, but this time round, it’s me, helping her. She deserves the rest.

So, now that long wait. If anyone has tips for easing our pain (besides heat packs as some days we live with one of those attached to us), please drop us a line in the comments.
Love and spoons, nineteen. 

The right thing.

The universe keeps dropping hints in my lap.

After saying what had happened, there has been an outpouring of love. I could so easily have been judged for what happened. I felt tortured by guilt at the start of it all. I called myself all the names the voices once called me…

Until I realised something.

R has been instrumental in helping me make my choice. She let me know that I wasn’t a bad person, that this was not my fault. You can’t choose who and when you fall in love. She told me that sometimes, love crashes into your life and you can’t stop it.

Sometimes, she said, your love morphs into friendship and you don’t see it happening. She said the distance could affect how I felt only a little, and that maybe taking a risk would be a good thing to do if it felt right.

What she said about friendship rang a bell. I’d always been a good friend to J, but it felt different with the Dutchman. There was that spark I’d been craving, the feeling of vlinders and stardust. I didn’t know why it was there. I wanted to deny it. I wanted to stop it from happening. I didn’t want to be “that girl”, the one who ran away to someone else on a whim…

Only, it just didn’t feel like a whim. It felt like something much more solid than a whim. Especially when the whim in question talked non-stop to me and sent pictures of lights and dogs, and looked forward to seeing me again…

A whole year of waiting had pulled my heartstrings to breaking. The time really had come to accept that what was in front of me was the right thing.

There was a crackle of static and I knew, with a pair of lips inches from mine, that I had fallen hard and fast and there was no denying this any longer.

Best about this?

The younger ones have actually talked to him. They love him too.