Mélanie, Montréal (2/4)
"I’ve always been super active. I did triathlons and used to run all the time, as did my partner. So it’s not surprising that I gave birth to a little boy who moved a lot, who ate a lot, and who didn’t sleep a lot! Baby, he needed to breastfeed at least fifteen times a day. He also wanted to be held all the time. The memory I have of my maternity leave is that it physically broke me to always have him in my arms. I remember one day, I bent over his pack n' play to change his diaper and I felt that my back was about to lock up. I saw myself not being able to move, not being able to reach out for the phone, and I suddenly realized how vulnerable and dependent he was on me. That feeling never left me. You think, ‘What if I drop him and he dies?’ It gave me the chills. He’s two and a half now, but even to this day, I can’t stop thinking about it. I drive like an old lady. If he walks towards the steps, I’ll start thinking, ‘If he keeps going, he will fall off the stairs,’ and I’ll visualize him with a broken neck. I never think about my own death, but his, all the time. I mean, it doesn’t come up fifty times a day, but one or two, certainly. It’s maddening. I was 37 when I had him. I’m now 40. There’s nothing fun with turning 40. Of course, you’re more confident and settled in life, but you look at your kid and you can’t help but think… I don’t know. I try not to overthink it too much or I won’t move forward."