This Is Me by Lucy Simm
9 years… I’ve waited 9 years. Don’t make me wait any longer. As I lie there under the bright lights of theatre, no jazz hands in sight, numb from the waist down, powerless to hold the baby I’ve wanted, hoped, wished for. My voice, muffled by the chatter of the sea of blue people. I want to hold MY BABY. I’ve waited 9 years… don’t let me wait any longer.
Wanting, longing, hoping, praying, wishing, heartache, grieving… and finally JOY. This thing I thought would never happen has finally happened. Travelling on a fertility journey can be a lonely road. I internalised the grief of not being able to conceive naturally as it was too painful to share my disappointment with the world. I had to be joyful for everyone else… when I felt joyless.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome hit me like a freight train and I was floored. I had to build myself back up from ground zero. Creating a new me from a blank canvas. Finding an alternative route to fight my way through the clouds. Peeling away the layers of the onion to get to the real me. It wasn’t an easy road, but my inner warrior wasn’t going to give up without a fight. A painful journey but I don’t feel hard done to. I feel empowered. I feel I’ve found my strengths and certainly my weaknesses. I learnt to battle through adversity. I became a better version of me.
Pregnancy was the dream I clung to and when it happened I embraced it with every ounce of my being. I was now one of the lucky ones. That’s where my creativity resurfaced from the depths and exploded like a firework. My sacral chakra and creative brain went into overdrive and all I wanted to do was create… “things”. Despite adversity I had created a living and breathing human being… so what next?! I felt anything was possible.
Motherhood is an amazing gift to me. I find it incredibly hard like everyone else, but I also know how blessed I am to have my little boy. He has brought a rainbow of colour into our lives. He is my greatest teacher. He inspires me to be the best version of me I can be and to continue my path of self-development to be the best Mum I can be.
Serendipity landed at my door when the opportunity arose to share a studio. Having the support of three incredible creative mothers gave me the confidence in both my creative and mothering abilities. Two years ago, I heard about an amazing initiative called Mothers Who Make, supporting creative mothers to do both jobs which are undervalued in society. A trip to Mothers Who Make in Manchester and I just knew I needed to bring this to my hometown of Halifax. Women supporting women, mothers supporting mothers, artists supporting artists… it’s what I’m passionate about. My creativity has flourished from my own support network, so I knew other mothers needed that support too.
The next project for me was to build my own business. Have the confidence to put myself out there in the big wide world of the web. To come out and say #ThisIsMe. To be proud of who I am and how far I’ve come. As an artist and creative person this is such a hard thing to do. Laying yourself bare. Opening yourself up to vulnerability and criticism. As an artist my inner critic is well voiced, but my outer voice is often squashed, hampered, shut down, ridiculed, unheard. Like thousands of women who have gone before me I struggle to be me. But being me is who I’m meant to be. I’ve worked hard to find the authentic me and my voice. THIS is who I’m meant to be… THIS IS ME.