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  • Writer's pictureJaye Gaff

Rising Above the Pain

I am a woman. I am 34 years old. I am a wife and a mother. I refuse to not rest. I take all the time I need. I refuse to be the mother who skips a slice of cake or pie. Who forgoes her own pleasure for the sake of others.

Even though I was brought up to never complain. To shut up. Even when I was raped. When I was abused. When I was in labour. When I had bad period pain. When I broke bones. Don’t complain.

Apologise to men when you tell them you’re not interested. And when they don’t react well, well, why don’t you just give them a chance? Just be nice. Just smile.

Get up after giving birth, when you have stitches and black blood is falling out of you, and take care of the baby. But not in the way you know is best. Do it in the way society thinks you should. Otherwise you’re a bad mother.

Have sex. Enjoy it. Moan for his pleasure. But don’t enjoy it too much. Don’t do it for yourself. That makes you a whore.

Be the mother who their child remembers as never being sick. You don’t falter. You work and you clean and you smile when people tell you to smile and you do everything for everyone and nothing for yourself. Wouldn’t want to be selfish now would you?

But that’s not the way my child is going to grow up. She’s going to see me rest. There will be days where she knows I’m in too much pain and can’t get out of bed. She’ll see me doing the best I can and she’ll know that me cutting the last slice of pie in half -- that I’m giving myself the pleasure she’ll also share. And that when she grows up - and if she becomes a wife and mother - that she’ll be allowed to rest and love herself as much, if not more, as everyone else and she’ll sure as hell be allowed to eat some damn pie.

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