To the Best Mother I Know

Today, on my very first Mother’s Day, I would like to pay my respects and give the honour to the best mother I know-
Ryan Schofield.

But seriously.

On April 15th, two days postpartum for me, and day two of neonatal intensive care for our daughter, I looked over at Ryan from my wheelchair in NICU while he was asking the nurse questions about her latest bowel movement while teaching me how to bottle feed our daughter the way she liked it – and I laughingly told him that when Mother’s Day came around, I was going to dedicate it to him.

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a fierce-ass feminist and that I Love awareness days.

Anything I can do to promote women’s rights, I will.

International Women’s Day?
Time to sing women’s praises.

Red Dress Day?
Time to grieve and shed light on indigenous women’s struggles.

The Me Too movement?
Time to unite women, enlighten men and rage against the machine.

So you would think that on my Very First Mother’s Day, I would sing the praises of all the strong women I know, including myself, once more.

But no- I am Honestly dedicating this first Mother’s Day post to my amazing and rock-steady partner,
Ryan Schofield.

I know that seems strange-
Way to take one of the only occasions given to celebrate women and give it to a man-
What a bummer!
But hear me out.

My birth was traumatic.

I Absolutely Loved it and I would birth 100 more babies because I loved the act of it so much- but in the sense of what it did to my body, it was traumatic.

I had a front to back tear that got completed by a 1.75-inch episiotomy to save my future anal sphincter’s ability to function.

My girl was twisted inside of me at a 45-degree tilt that required two pairs of obstetrician’s arms to disappear inside of me at the 7th hour of labour to wrench her shoulders into a more desirable downward descent.

The last half hour, my tearing got worse, and she had her face turned at the wrong angle for a safe head passage into the world.

So then a 14-inch long pair of forceps disappeared inside of me to fix that problem.

Then the scissors for the episiotomy came out and cut me almost two inches long.

Then my almost 8-pound girl came out of there.

I’m telling it in detail like it is because That- or something like That- is how women become Mothers.

Pregnancy, birthing, mothering- it’s All hard as Hell.
It’s beautiful, empowering, soul-deepening, heart-widening and Amazing- but the process of becoming a mother is Hard as Hell.

And that is why my first Mother’s Day is dedicated to Ryan.

Without his love, I wouldn’t have wanted to create Sadie and bring her into being in the first place.

Without his strength and presence beside me in the delivery room, I don’t know how I would have gotten through the labour itself.

Without his dedication to our daughter in NICU those first 48 hours that I was too mangled in the Postpartum unit to even get to our child-
Sadie wouldn’t have had the right paperwork signed, the right questions asked and dutifully reported back to me; and most importantly, she wouldn’t have been able to hear from at least one of her functioning parents how much she was loved.

I was in a drugged-out and sleep-deprived daze for the first 48 hours of postpartum and Ryan was Always there for her, and for me.

And without Ryan’s Fierce commitment to me and my mental and physical health, I wouldn’t have flown through my postpartum recovery phase as well as I have.

We had a little three-day stumbling block with a potential manic episode, but together we recognized it, treated it, and rose above it.

Ryan is an Incredible parent, and an amazing partner.

So while it rattles me to dedicate this day to him and not to myself or any one of the amazing Mother’s I have or know-
He Deserves it. He Earned it.

A mother, to me, has all the following traits:
Nurturing, strong, caring, kind, patient, loving, fiercely protective, dedicated and basically a badass.

So, Ryan- Happy Mother’s Day.

I LOVE parenting with you.

Room in My Womb: A History of My Motherhood 


Mother’s Day is coming up. It’s coming up soon, and it’s coming up hard and fast for some of us. This particular Mother’s Day, I’m really excited about it, because it’s my First Mother’s Day with a babe in arms. It’s taken me many, many years to get to this joyous occasion, though, and that’s what I want to talk about.

My tagline for this EmPowered Mama blog is Motherhood: Raw. Real. Honest. And that’s what it is always going to be. So without further ado- let me reveal to those of you who may not know, that I have considered myself a ‘mother’ for quite some time now.

On September 1st, 2005, I had an abortion. The fetus, if it pleases you to call it that, was 7 weeks, 4 days old.

I terminated because I was young; my family was largely unsupportive, and everyone seemed to think that I, as a 19-year old girl, would know what to do in this unplanned situation.

I didn’t know what to do, and I made my choice to terminate the pregnancy because I thought it was the choice that would most please my family.

I have regretted that choice in some form or another for all the days and years since.

Interestingly enough, the development of bipolar disorder occurs when a person has a combination of 8-13 different genetic factors and incurs a traumatic event in adolescence/early adulthood that effectively ‘launches’ their potential bipolar disorder into action.

The loss of my potential firstborn child was the catalyst for every single future mental health battle I’ve had since then.

To sum it up, in my first pregnancy, I did not get to birth a child. I did, however, birth my entire lifelong battle with mental illness.

Oh- the things you wish you could have known at the time.

Anyhow- fast forward through a lot of hellish years to when I finally had had enough therapy to forgive myself and get my shit together and I met Ryan and we fell in love and we said, ‘let’s make babies!’

So we did.

And we were SO good at making babies that within a month of going off my birth control, we were Pregnant!

We conceived somewhere around Valentine’s Day 2018. We had a positive pregnancy test on March 21, 2018 and we danced around the kitchen in a circle, holding hands and paws with the dog. I’ve never seen my man look so happy. It was Perfect.

And then it wasn’t.

I started bleeding March 26th. I didn’t stop bleeding until April 23rd. Our chance at becoming parents had died. Another little piece of me had died.

We got through it. We got our doctor’s clearance to start trying again.

And now- as I type this- I am using my other hand to soothe the forehead of my sweet 25-day-old baby girl, who is having a little nightmare beside me while she sleeps in our bed.

If there is a God- God is good.

It’s been 14 years in the making, but I finally have my babe in arms for Mother’s Day.

It took me 14 years to get here, and I’ve been many Moms along the way.

A grieving mom, a mourning mom, a hopeful mom, a bereaved mom, a persevering mom…

But I know that there are Many other women that don’t have their babe in arms this Mother’s Day- and this blog is for them too.

This is what I wrote for the “About” section of my blog:

“My blog was born because the shit women go through to make a baby is absolutely Nuts- and the fact that we all walk around making it look Easy is a goddamn travesty. Women are Incredible, and mothering is Hard as Hell.

This blog is for new mamas and old mamas and wannabe mamas. First-time mothers and mothers of multiples. It’s for bored at work moms and unconventional moms. Infertile moms and miscarriage moms. Stepmoms and adoptive moms and birth moms. Moms who still have a sense of humour. Old mothers. Young mothers. Mothers who are now grandmothers.

Anyone who’s ever wanted to be a mother.
Anyone who’s ever had a mother.

So basically- women.
This is a blog for All women.

I want you to join me. I want you to come along beside me in your little Mom-mobile and read these blog posts and share in these journeys. Let’s hear each other’s miscarriage stories and infertility stories and birth stories and postpartum stories. Let’s see pieces of ourselves in them. Let’s laugh about these stories. Let’s cry at the sad bits and pee our pants laughing at the funny bits. Subscribe to my blog and start following me if this sounds like it could be a fun ride for you. If reading my posts doesn’t make you pee your pants or bawl your eyes out- or do both at the same time, I’m doing something wrong.

XO, Em