After many talks S and I are doing super. We are planning to see a counselor together, or S will go alone to get some help regarding how to talk to MIL. Calls have been made. Apologies are abundant.
And we are going to get a doula.
And we are going to not have her in the room for laboring, just for delivery.
Thank you for all of your lengthy and thoughtful comments.
After my concession we both were able to come from a place of understanding. What came up for S is that she overprotects her mom, and doesn’t know how to assert appropriate boundaries. What came up for me is that MIL (who has had genetics issues in the past, but doesn’t express any of that now) represents my disconnection from my kid. And she is more genetically related to Pip! That part just eats me.
S was really able to empathize with this and we are even considering just having us two in the room. As some of you wondered, when I felt that MIL had power over me regarding the birth, it was threatening to my position as Pip’s mother. When I expressed this ugly thing to S, and it came out into the light, I was like oh, hi, you are scared to have a kid that is not related to you…you are terrified that MIL, because of genetics is more related to Pip. And it’s true. Sucky but true.
What I needed was to feel again how much this child is mine. Once I did I was able to deal with the MIL issue very differently.
Amazing how deep scary insecurity covers the world in fear. I never understood the powerlessness of this position before.
Anyway, I’m back to myself. As a mom, as a wife.
Presently I know how much our Pip is my daughter, even though my role is different this time. I’m back to crazy excitement when I feel her move in S’s belly. I’m back to complaining about our pregnancy buddy (same due date week) who is nauseatingly chipper about her pregnancy. Don’t get me started on that.
You know what pitiful thing I’m grateful for in this moment? The fact that I am really sick and instead of caring for a child I have the morning to recline on the couch with menthol cough drops and juice and watch TV. Oh the luxury of a sick day. Well, a sick morning. I do have to haul out of here and pick him up from preschool in 3 hours, but fuck if I’m going to do anything other than watch daytime TV until then.
More later on a list I’m compiling of the joys of nonbio motherhood I plan to enjoy the eff out of.