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  • Writer's pictureDr Anjali Raj Westwood

Don't ask me if I am a mother

Some of you might remember that I have been working on a book for working mothers for what seems like a long time. I started planning for and writing this book in 2022 when I felt the support for the mums around me was decreasing by the day. The pandemic, the corporate culture, the burdened health systems, the systemic gender roles, it was all at an all-time high. At a personal level, my husband and I were excited about starting a family. My years of work with mums and babies had me both excited and scared. As a scientist, I knew the worst of everything.


I suddenly found myself on the other side of the table wondering if I will ever get pregnant. In November 2022, I did. We were elated. We told our families and started planning our future, from house renovations to financials. All the while in the back of my mind the scientist in me knew that there is always a 1 in 4 chance of a miscarriage before 12 weeks. Unfortunately, my worst fears were realised a couple of days before Christmas 2022 when I had a missed miscarriage and we found ourselves coasting numbly through the multiple hospital visits, medicines, hospital admissions and so on.


Hand on heart, I couldn’t get myself to even think about this book.


I kept it aside for over 6 months. I started again last week when I felt the drive come back. I was emotionally ready to write again.


There are two reasons I am sharing this story.


Firstly, it’s ok to want to change/stop/move on from projects you start. Life affects all of us and making that decision should be solely yours. You matter more than anything in the world.


Secondly, I want you to know where I am coming from. My approach in this book is based on my academic and professional work with hundreds of mums over almost a decade. It is coming from a place of empathy, evidence, and support.


I hope you enjoy this book when it's finished.


Anjali


P.S. The image is from January 2023 when I was raising money for the Miscarriage Association who are a blessing to couples like us.




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