After months of going through a difficult pregnancy, I couldn’t wait to look into my lil angel’s eyes and forget everything that had happened in the past 9 months. I was super scared for the delivery, and frightened to the extent of asking my doctor to just give me a General Anesthesia…knock me out…and hand me the baby like a pre-ordered much-awaited online shopping order. She wouldn’t have it. And I am mighty glad that my doctor had that kind of confidence in me…something which I lacked in myself.
You know how they say, that when you look at your baby…and hold him in your arms for the very first time…your whole world changes? It’s true. Within minutes I was a mother, taking charge of another Being (previously that would’ve meant looking after a drunk buddy post partying!). Each time I had hit panic button through my pregnancy, I distracted myself by dreaming about the beautiful phase awaiting. It was all going to be picture perfect from now on. I had everything organized in my head. I had a plan. And Oh!! How.Wrong.I.Was.
The first few days, are anything but easy. The following few weeks even tougher. If it’s easy making a baby, it’s a tremendous task in keeping the baby safe, healthy and thriving when they are out. I had faced a third degree episiotomy, breastfeeding was no walk in the park, getting up through deep sleep to calm an infant > change diapers > feed > burp > put them to sleep was all getting me brain fried. I was pretty close to punching faces who came to visit me and commented, “Isn’t motherhood bliss”. No. First month is anything but bliss. Its hard work, its crap. Yes, you see your baby and you WANT to do the best for them…but pushing your mental and physical abilities to endless limits is a test that requires a lot of patience….and a LOT of support from your spouse and family.
Here’s something I think that all women should be aware of post-delivery:
BreastFeeding is NOT easy, nor does the milk come in the way you expect. Don’t give up. Try try try and push for atleast a month before you give in to formula feed. I thought I was a pro after watching all those videos on YouTube, till reality hit home. Sore nipples, no ‘let down’ for a few days postpartum, everyone telling me that my baby was hungry so give formula, trying to pump milk to see how much I’m making (which isn’t even an indicator of how much milk one is making), major backaches due to constant bending over while nursing, and other such problems mounted. Not being able to even sit for nursing (due to stitches ‘down under’) just added to the whole stress. Correct latch was a problem for a month and I suffered!! Don’t do it to yourself. You will have other things to deal with as well. Remember…
- Please meet lactation consultants to help you and baby get a proper latch
- Use nursing pillows / lotsa pillows while nursing
2. Support System:
I’m sure your spouse is going to pitch in as much as he can. But it’s an emotional and physical roller coaster ride for us. Boys can’t imagine what is going on, even when they ‘see’ everything and are a part of the whole journey with you. Be patient with him. But also TELL him what you want done. I think that the switch-over of roles (from being a daughter to a wife, and eventually from wife to a mother), comes much easier for women than for our men. It’s all too much to take in, and the lack of sleep is accompanied by a constant state of exhaustion with a ‘zombie’ like feeling. Brace yourself.
If you are lucky to have your mom come stay with you (which was in my case as I delivered at my parents home), she is going to be your bestest friend for some time. Don’t hesitate in learning from her. But also remember that at end of the day it’s YOUR baby, and they ALL have to follow YOUR lead. A lot of changes have come from when our mothers looked after us as babies, make sure you discuss how exactly you want your baby looked after and know what kind of assistance you need.
There are also many support groups online that provide you with an incredible amount of guidance and credible amount of information. I highly recommend joining them (search Facebook/Google).
3. Always Remember:
We weren’t born pro moms. It’s OK to make mistakes, be unsure of what to do, and to ask for help and advice, from whoever you think will help you best with the particular issue you face. Everything will be trial and error till you and baby figure out what works best for you both.
Some Do’s and Don’ts At The End Of The Day :
- Don’t EVER be guilty about not being able to keep everyone happy. The only person you need to think about is your baby for the next few months. Don’t even bother about what who thinks what. Haters will hate, talkers will talk.
- Do take utmost care of your health too. If anything happens to you, who will the baby depend on? Your baby needs you for her existence, for a lifetime. Make yourself priority without any guilt!
- Do Stay happy and healthy, babies pick up on positive vibes. And remember, each pregnancy is different.
So go without any pre conceived notions. Good luck and I’m very sure it’s all going to go smooth and perfect, as did mine <3