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Cecilia Sordi Campos – The Motherhood That Wasn’t

Stories 2022 Shortlist

Based in

Photographed in

I’m infertile. While I never wished to be a mother, the concept of infertility is part of my quotidian reality. I question if this is due to social expectations or in fact a biological need. Since having children has never been an intention, my infertility should not cause any emotional conflict, nonetheless, it does. It causes pain and confusion. I have realised that discussing motherhood in the context of my infertility is frequently greeted with an uncomfortable silence. My body, it seems, has failed to conform to the social and biological expectations of a person who was born with a reproductive apparatus. I am yet to find women who share similar emotional conflict, and I question the reason these issues may be silenced or continue to be contentious. I am yet to find appropriate public representation of infertility issues, especially those of Latina women. There are other women experiencing similar difficulties, so why do I continue to feel isolated?

With the making of this project, I seek to understand the phenomenological and psychosomatic expression of infertility caused by endometriosis. The project aims to seek strategies in communicating these experiences, specifically the quotidian experience of infertility within the public consciousness. the motherhood that wasn’t also acts as a catharsis, in which I mourn the loss of my fertility caused by endometriosis. I also mourn the loss of the choice I was unable to make rationally, the choice my own body took from me.

Digitised lumen prints with poppies and menstrual blood. Buried on the 22 August, unburied on the 12 September 2020.

Digitised lumen print with everlasting daisies and menstrual blood. Buried on the 19 February, unburied on the 19 March 2021.

Self-portrait, and digitised lumen print with menstrual blood and Waratahs diptych. Buried on the 1st November. Unburied on the 27th November 2021.

Self-portrait with menstrual blood.

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