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Mother.

For the past 5 years I have spent time travelling within Australia and capturing women and their children.
Before having children of my own I felt I had been presented with a distorted and simplistic view of what it is to be a mother. I would see babies and young children in films and tv shows silent, happy and clean. Mothers were at best a little flustered but still kempt and composed.

Yet this has not been my reality or the reality of any other mothers that I know. Where is the snot, the tears of both mother and child, the anxiety, frustration and blown out nappies. Or the leaking, healing and forever changed bodies of the women who had grown and birthed those babies. There is little to inform or support the complex and profound emotional and physiological transformation that changes our very being once a woman gives birth. The disconnected cultural constructions around motherhood seem to in fact work against us, to sell us a myth. The idea that mothers can somehow manage it all in a system that is not built for them, and it ensures that if we fail to thrive our belief is that is a fault of our own rather than a societal shortcoming.

Pregnancy, birth and motherhood is one of the most profound, deeply beautiful and intimate experiences a woman can experience yet it is also one of the most physically and emotionally challenging, relentless, demanding and claustrophobic. Why then do women continue to hold themselves to impossible standards of only goodness and love.

“When she is with them she is not herself; when she is without them she is not herself; and so it is as difficult to leave your children as it is to stay with them. To discover this is to feel that your life has become irretrievably mired in conflict, or caught in some mythic snare in which you will perpetually, vainly struggle.”

~ Rachel Cusk , A Lifes Work







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© Copyright 2021 Lisa Sorgini