“The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new.”Rajneesh Osho
Wonderful quote, isn’t it? And the one where we all can agree with, right?
The 9-month long pregnancy is one of the most beautiful phases in a women’s life. The moment she sees those two sensational pink lines, her heart expands make more room to love and care. She undergoes emotions, develops empathy and brings out her nurturing quality as she transforms into a mother. The D-day arrives and she undergoes a pain which one cannot comprehend in words, yet it is the most beautiful day in her life. The pain fades away and little miracle carried in her womb is now in her arms. Overflowing with love and a fierce need to nourish, nurture and protect her offspring, a woman now enters Motherhood. It is indeed a Beautiful Beginning to a new journey in her life!
So, with this let me begin the Chapter Two of my Parenting Essentials, i.e.
Chapter 2: B – Beautiful Beginnings and more…
Birth and Rebirth
I have been blessed with motherhood twice and both my pregnancy experiences have been entirely different. Five years ago, when I conceived and delivered Ayaansh, I was a new mom surrounded by a lot of people who poured in their opinions and suggestions on everything, right from what I ate to how much time I should be feeding my baby, etc. I also had my share of self-doubt, insecurity and fear as I was new to the world of parenting, the result of which impacted my sanity, my milk flow and the relationship dynamics with my husband.
However, last year when I delivered Hridaan my pregnancy and motherhood journey was much smoother and fulfilling. I was spared with lack of visitors, their judgements and opinions because of which I could think through the best for me and my family. This time I was more composed, had a better support group – my husband and my parents who were more empathetic and understanding to my needs post delivery.
It is imperative for a woman to have this space that allows her to process the past 9 months and the long labor hours. It is not only her body that undergoes changes during and after the labor, but also her mental and emotional state. So, it is very important for a woman to rest, accept herself and align her thoughts to the present. We should also not ignore the husband, who equally goes through an emotional turmoil during the labor of his wife.
Let us remember, it is not only the birth of a child but also of parents. The foundation to a happy and healthy parenting begins right after the delivery of the child. Hence, restricting the visitors for a couple of days and allowing the couple to wean off the pregnancy period and re-adjust their lives as parents is advisable. The smoother the transition from couple to parents, the happier the parents and the child.
Another word of advice would be for the husbands who need to be more supportive of their wife. He should ensure that his words and actions make her feel loved and confident. Remember what she is been through for the last few months and stay supportive of her instincts and choices. A happy couple makes happy parents.
Bonding through breastfeeding
I distinctly remember the first time I saw each of my children right after delivery. It was love at first sight and the picture is still vividly fresh in my memories. As a new and first time mom, I was elated to hold Ayaansh, cuddle him in my arms and kiss his teeny-tiny fingers. But the moment of truth came as soon as he started crying and I was asked to breastfeed him. Five years back, I was naïve and had no clue how to latch my baby to the breasts. The hospital nurses trying to assist me by pinching my nipples and forcing it in my son’s mouth was just too much to me. To top it, Ayaansh had initial latching issues, and sly comments from family on how I lack the knack to feed my own child worsened my mental state. Of course, gradually we overcame everything and my baby nursed till he was two years, but the scars of the emotional trauma still remains afresh. Luckily, my second time experience was smooth and I had a great support from the hospital staff too.
Breastfeeding is the most natural phenomenon and the world expects mothers to be a pro at it. But, the reality is far different from the perception. A woman undergoes a great ordeal during her labor and is usually exhausted by the end of it. Although breastfeeding within an hour of delivery is ideal, there are many moms who face a lot of issues like lack of milk/colostrum, inverted nipples, child in the NICU, etc. So, the first step here is to STOP JUDGING THE MOTHER AND HELP HER with:
- Holding the baby skin-to-skin, i.e your naked baby against your bare chest (you can then cover with a cotton blanket), so that it helps in releasing the hormonal triggers that encourage a newborn to find the breast and begin sucking on the nipple.
- Help her to find the right latching positions like Cradle, Cross Cradle, Football, etc.,
- Providing her with the breastfeeding essentials like Breastfeeding Pillow, Nipple Cream, Nipple Shield, Breast Pumps, etc.
- Providing her with nutrient rich diet that helps her in lactation.
- And most importantly, by being patient and understanding her needs.
We all must remember that every mum and baby are different, and getting to know each other can take time. Bonding with your baby is an unique experience, so be patient, take your time, enjoy the process and most importantly DO NOT STRESS OUT!
For both parents, the important thing is to get used to look after your new baby – being close to him, talking to him, holding and cuddling him. This increases your confidence as a parent and also gives your baby the best start, emotionally, physically, mentally – and helps mothers in breastfeeding too.
This is the second post written as a part of #BlogchatterA2Z Challenge for the alphabet ‘B’. You can find all 26 posts on ‘A TO Z OF PARENTING ESSENTIALS’ under the hashtag #themummastartupblogs in Facebook Instagram and Twitter.
Also, don’t forget to roll me at Blogchatter‘s website!
See you tomorrow with a new post on Parenting Essentials. Till then, let us keep writing, reading and spread smiles around!