I’m sorry. 

I’m sorry motherhood was such a shock.

I’m sorry I didn’t prepare for childbirth. And I’m sorry that it resulted in such a long and stressful birth for both of us that took so long to recover from. 

I’m sorry that I didn’t push for more help with your feeding. I’m sorry I didn’t act upon my gut instinct that you weren’t in pain. I’m sorry it took me 3 months to stop you starving. 

I’m sorry. So so sorry. So sorry that I didn’t give the hearing tests any credit. That I barrelled though test after test annoyed that they wanted you asleep without ever really considering that you might be deaf. I’m sorry that meant that when they did tell me I fell into a hundred pieces. There and then and for months after. 

I’m sorry that I didn’t put your hearing aids in very much. I’m sorry that I hated them so much, that I worried more about what they said about me than you. I’m sorry that I hated that you were deaf. I’m sorry I didn’t put your needs before my grief. 

I’m sorry that it took me so long to learn to sign. That I didn’t embrace who you are much sooner.

I’m sorry I didn’t force others to do the same. I’m sorry I didn’t fight your corner. I’m so sorry. 

I’m sorry I got pregnant so soon after you were born. And with a baby that was not strong enough. I’m sorry that grieving for her took me away from you. 

I’m sorry that Harriet is deaf too. Actually I’m not sorry about that. I’m grateful that you have each other. 

But I am sorry that having two deaf children in two years almost killed me. The learning curve was steep and I’m sorry that it didn’t come easier to me. 

I’m sorry that your time of most need came at the same as everyone else’s. I’m sorry that I was so stretched that instead of helping and comforting you, I pushed you away. I’m sorry that you had to go through that at all. I’m sorry that I didn’t fight for things that could have made it easier on you. 

I’m sorry that you see me at my worst. 

I’m sorry that I expect so much from you. 

I’m sorry that I’m forever telling you ‘in just a second…’

I’m so grateful for you. 

As you are. 

My wonderful, kind, empathetic, strong willed, intelligent, affectionate, talented boy. 

You are the best big brother your sisters could ask for, forever putting their needs before yours. 

You are a credit to the Deaf community and the hearing world. You straddle the two worlds with grace and pride. Your ability to switch between spoken English and BSL and even Sign Supported English depending on who you are talking to astounds me.

You made me a Mama and you made me the person I am today, beyond motherhood. 

I love you so much.

Happy Birthday. 

And I’m sorry. So sorry x


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