What is it Like to be a Childless Woman?

Woman in reflection - in a playground

Only I knew my unborn child, she lived inside me, in my mind, in my heart, in my dreams. I can still see her. I remember the decades of longing for her to grow inside my belly and the yearning to experience that powerful initiation of giving birth into mother-hood, the desire to feed her from my breasts, sheltering her beneath the curtain of my long hair as she fed. I remember my dream child’s full heavy limbed body lying satiated in my arms, one of her own plump little arms flung out in complete acceptance of the safety of my embrace. Her tiny hand closing and unclosing, her eyes moving beneath her eyelids as she dreamed. Her small moist mouth, milk dribbling from one corner down her smooth velvet cheek. Her soft curls glinting in the moonlight … her father stroking those tiny silken springs of hair and smiling at me.

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