No amount of reading and sharing of experiences can prepare a woman for motherhood. This is what I learned from being a new mom for 1 month and two weeks (and counting!).
Despite numerous stories from friends and advices from medical personnel, I realized that every woman had a different way of being a mother. This, I learned, first hand,when Cloud Emmanuel came into our life last 13 December 2014.
He was small, 5.07 pounds at birth. Almost the same size as the 500 mL bottle of soft drinks. But he is the most beautiful and wonderful thing I had ever seen. The moment I laid eyes on him after I delivered him, I knew that my life had totally changed. I knew that I hold in my hands one of God’s greatest gift – His creation that He had entrusted into our care. I knew that I had a lot of things to look after now, on top of it is ensuring that our child become the best that he can be. And the first thing that I did when the nurse gave him to me was to offer a prayer of thanksgiving and dedication to God for giving us this baby. I knew that he is not mine but of God’s.
And then, the breastfeeding journey begins. Of this, I am also thankful to the Lord. Where most mothers have trouble immediately breastfeeding after giving birth, me and Cloud didn’t have a problem. Mainly because, despite my grogginess from being sedated I remained adamant that my baby will not be given formula milk. So, there I was, tired, sleepy and aching from labor and delivery but happily feeding Cloud. It was not easy, we both have to learn proper latching and the first few days I was not even sure if he was getting any milk from me. I just let him latch and latch, I just offered my breast every time he wants to feed. Thankfully, I am gifted with liquid gold despite having small breasts. (and by small, I mean, barely there breasts.) 🙂 There were times when my in-laws offered to buy formula milk for our baby, worrying that he might not be getting enough milk from me, but my husband and I remained firm that Cloud will only be drinking breast milk. Thus, the start of engorged breasts, painful nipples, wet shirtfronts and unlimited latching a.k.a breastfeeding journey.
Our Cloud is a happy baby. He isn’t fussy or “iyakin”, most of the time we just position him between his Dad and me and he would be fine, crying only if he gets hungry or his diaper needs to be changed. He only have one habit, and that would be waking up in the middle of the night and have his play time until 03:00 or 04:00 in the morning, something we are happy to oblige.
Now that I’m back at work, every morning is a struggle between staying in bed with our baby and getting up for work. It breaks my heart to know that I will be away from him for eight – ten hours but my only consolation is it is for our own good, to help ensure that we can provide him the future that he deserves.
So this is motherhood, it makes you soft yet tough, strong yet patient, firm but happy. And I knew that I had found my life’s purpose.