Since Mother’s day was just two days ago, I thought it appropriate to write on that subject. To do so, I need to break some of my blog writing rules. Just for this Mother’s day post, I am writing a post for today and not for three months from now because my message is THAT important.
I have had the privilege of celebrating Mother’s day together with my mom who has come to visit me from Vancouver and help me out in my first month postpartum.
I won’t go into details on my labour and delivery (coming soon though!) but I will say that I strongly believe that Mother’s day should be celebrated at LEAST once a month.
HARD WORK AND SACRIFICE
I’d like to say that I’ve accomplished a lot of things in my life through academics, dance and music because of my hard work and sacrifice. I overcame difficult obstacles, pushed my physical limits and practised for hours to get the results I wanted.
But now, I’m doubting my definition of hard work and sacrifice and rather, am starting to believe that all those dance steps, languages, piano pieces and exams have just come to me quite easily.
As I was preparing mentally and physically for labour and delivery, I always thought in the back of my mind that giving birth would just be another event in my life that I could get through like any other I’ve done. I mean, so many women before me have given birth naturally. How hard can it be?
My labour and delivery tested my mental and physical limits to a level that I have never experienced before. I still can’t believe natural childbirth is a normal part of life. It is both extraordinary and scary. Don’t ask me if I forgot about the pain because I still remember it. However, it is true that once you have your baby in your arms, you’re flooded with relief, awe and love. The discomfort and fear disappear, that is, until you start your recovery.
While I speak personally about the physical and mental challenges I faced with an unmedicated natural delivery, I am not saying that medicated deliveries or c-sections do not have their challenges. I roomed with a lovely lady who under went a c-section and I, in no way, envy what she went through either.
MORE HARD WORK AND SACRIFICE
I also attended breastfeeding courses and did my research through books and websites. The decision to breastfeed was a no brainer and I was convinced that anyone could do it if they were determined. I just didn’t realize HOW MUCH determination was needed to breastfeed. For some, it may come more naturally as your milk will come in, your baby will latch on perfectly etc. For others, like me, your milk will not come in, you will have a super hungry baby that you can’t satisfy, you will worry that you’re not adequate, you will feel like a failure when you have to give him formula, you will cry when he cries, you’ll cry in pain because your breasts are bloody, blistered and cracked because they aren’t used to the strong suction…
My obstetrician told me at our birth course, “if you think giving birth is hard, you’re wrong. Breastfeeding is harder.” I said to myself, “yeah right.”
But she was right. Breastfeeding is mentally and almost physically harder (depends what kind of delivery you had) than giving birth especially because learning how to breastfeed comes at a time when your hormones are all over the place.
Breastfeeding is definitely not coming to me easily and I am struggling to stay determined and focused. I take it one day at a time and am thankful that I have my mom’s and husband’s support.
The challenges won’t stop with breastfeeding though. There will be more sleepless nights, times when my baby will cry desperately and I won’t know why, times I will worry about his development, his weight etc. The list goes on.
REMEMBER MOTHER’S DAY
It is mind boggling to think that all this real hard work, stress and sacrifice that a mother endures is normal! I still can’t believe it! Then, I think of the single parents who don’t have help raising their kids and can’t imagine how they cope. After all mothers do for their children, Mother’s day comes around and their kids don’t even remember it. Take my brother for example,
“Oh crap it’s Mother’s day. Uh, what do you want to do mom? Actually, can we postpone it to next week?”
I repeat, Mother’s day should be celebrated at LEAST once a month.