Call the Midwife

I received my Call the Midwife box set from London today. So excited to read the memoirs of Jennifer Worth, a midwife, upon which the BBC series, which are shown on PBS, are based. The titles are Call the Midwife: A True Story of the East End in the 1950s, Shadows of the Workhouse, Farewell to the East End. There are black and white photographs in the book showing the people and places from the time. I wonder if the books printed in the US differ from the ones I bought from the ones printed across the pond.

Does anyone else watch the series here in the states? The writing, acting, costumes, sets and props are so realistic it’s like traveling back in time. I have come to love the midwives, nuns and people of the east end and am touched by their complex natures and humanity. It’s become my favorite show and I have been reduced to tears often from the beautiful and sometimes bittersweet stories. It evokes such deep emotion from my soul, aches that I’ve kept long-hidden in my heart.

I had wanted to be a nurse, then a nurse-midwife but after losing my first baby, then three more to miscarriage, I could not do it. It hurt too much to see others enjoying their pregnancies and babies when I was never able to hold my own.

My youngest niece recently shared the joyful news that she and her husband are expecting a baby. I am thrilled for the two of them. Yet, it pains me a little to think that my own baby would have been born twenty-six months after her and that if she had lived, they would have been great friends and cousins and played together. Christmas, which was when my baby was due to be born, was always the hardest. When my young nieces and nephew were opening their packages and playing with their gifts, the wonder and happiness of them brought tears to my eyes and a little pain to my heart. I’d sometimes have to leave the room and have a quiet cry by myself. If mine had lives, I might be enjoying the same news and preparing for my life as a grandmother. But it was not to be. And now that I’ve had a hysterectomy, I will remain childless forever.

Still, I am so happy for the young couple. It’s wonderful that they’re going to have a little bundle of joy this autumn and that it will have its first Christmas in December. Maybe the pain in my heart will ease by then.


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