Hello lovelies! Today I want to talk about motherhood. It’s inevitable for me not to mention topics like this because I’m a full time Mom. My nickname is ‘Mom’ or ‘Bebey‘- a moniker my daughter gave me but my full name is “Mom! Mom!! Mom!!!”. This is all I hear all day, all night. Even in my sleep.
I felt a need to point out an obvious thing that is always being played down. Motherhood is an ab-so-friggin’-lutely amazing thing. One can’t contest that. Shout out to all the moms, moms-to-be, aspiring moms and all. I can’t reiterate enough, how valuable you are to this world. Now, can I pump on the brakes here and really share to intending moms how real and tough this road can be? Grab your cup of Zobo, let’s talk.
When I was pregnant with my first child, all I heard were the sweet things about motherhood. They sounded so darn good, I didn’t even bother making plans for helping hands towards baby’s arrival. I thought it was going to be easy peezy (asides Labor). Well, I thought wrong. Some Moms have it really easy with everyone to the rescue. With Grandmas taking turns in bathing the baby, bowls of pepper soup being hauled into your room frequently. Grandma giving you majestic baths and body massages etc. Well, in as much as I pictured it that way for me (because I have a Mom who’s known for her Omugwo skills and her incredible tender loving care), it didn’t happen. We were in different countries at the time. So I had to do these all by myself. It was so tough. I think I’d say I had the post-par-tum blues because I cried all day, every day! Slow and steady, I started getting a hang of things and kept hoping that I’d get relieved eventually when I see my Mom. Like I said, Moms to-be are not really told the realities of ushering a baby into this world. We also get carried away by the jubilation of the arrival which is good but here are some truths to make you more prepared for this arrival (besides reading ‘Every woman’ and ‘ Supernatural birth’)
- Holding your baby for the first time will feel surreal: Yes, you are excited to meet the baby you’ve felt inside you for 9 months (or less) but when you finally see this baby and have her in your care, it’d feel so surreal. The feelings of happiness, mixed with anxiety and “how da’ hell am I gonna carry this fragile human?”.
- Your life changes forever: We finally visited Grandma, and Grandma did her thing but even her Midas’ touch wasn’t enough to relieve me of mummy duties. That was when it began to really sink in that my life had changed . I realized it was just me and baby from then on. Not Grandma, not Aunties , not anyone.
- Don’t feel guilty if you do not run the baby friendly course: For some Moms, between the first to the fourth day, breastfeeding is tough on the Mom but God made it in a way that the little trickle of golden milk the breast produces called Colostrum, is very okay for the baby until your milk production comes in full. If you don’t produce enough milk for the baby in the long run or you need to go back to work, please do not hesitate to switch to Formula (if you can’t breast pump). Formula fed babies are as healthy as Breast-fed babies. Older Moms will scare you with talk of taking multiple trips to the hospital because they are formula-fed, that’s not totally true. They might mean, the immunity from your breast milk helps a lot but that doesn’t mean you’d run to the hospital every second for the formula-fed babies. I breastfed mine till she clocked one, just like I’m doing the second but at some time she caught a flu. On the flip side, I’ve seen formula fed babies who didn’t visit the hospital. So that logic is questionable or should I say, exaggerated.
- You’d lose sleep: I don’t know why no one told me this before my baby’s arrival. Your newborn would feed almost every one hour. Would cry for nothing and everything. So say bye bye to your sleep. Until they are about 6 months or even 18 years, because I think as a mother, you lose sleep on everything. From babies, to toddlers, to teenagers to chores etc. I think when they are finally adults (18 years- western style), you can now breathe a sigh of relief. If you are a typical Nigerian Parent, you will still lose sleep doing vigils, praying for your kids in University so that they will not join “bahd gang”. LOL
- Vaginal birth or Cesarean Section is not a prerequisite for being a “real woman”: This was supposed to be the first point but I saved it up for last. My attention was drawn to this by a friend on how some people still look at a C.S birth as “not woman enough”. First, in as much as we all strive to give birth the natural way, there is absolutely nothing wrong if you choose to go the other route for medical reasons, even elective reasons. Be open minded and wish for the safest delivery. Each birth story is different, even from same Mom. So anyone who thinks it’s an issue, is so old-school, that person should be counting cowries.
Now this is just a teeny weeny bit of things to come. I won’t scare you but honestly, when they turn into toddlers, it’s a cry for help. Funny enough, that time of motherhood isn’t played down like the arrival of a newborn. In my next post, I will tell you what it is like living with a toddler. Super fun! **fake smile fades gradually**. But for now, enjoy that baby in your hand when you usher her/him in, it’s 100 times worth the trouble. You’d see! **Genuine smile**
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