When people say being a mother is like you are born again, it is so true! Physically as well as mentally you enter a new phase of life. I will not sugar coat my experiences, it had been tough and emotional journey for me.
I always thought of myself as a strong person but now I was finding myself crying at the slightest comment anybody passed or about not being to handle a crying baby. I had read all about postpartum depression before hand and was ready to fight it but little did I know I couldn’y really control it. I had to talk and cry it out and it was so hard to do that! I was in pain, I had gone through an emegency c-section, I still hadn’t recovered from that shock! I felt like a failiure. After all the exercises and taking care of myself I couldn’t give birth normally. It felt like I failed some test after months of preparation. Now I was in pain but there was no rest, every 5 minutes I had to sit up to feed him with an audience of relatives around me wishing I could do this freely playing with baby than concentrate on covering up. There were people commenting on me not able to produce enough milk to feed baby, and he is hungry and not sleeping because of that, or about the fact that I should rest more according to some and I should walk around and move a little according to some. Phewwwww…!
I truly appreciate all the help I received from my family but I found myself craving for 5 minutes of privacy just to cry – yes to cry only or be in my comfortable pajamas. Even while going to washroom or taking a bath I had to rush because my son kept feeding every 5 minutes. I wanted some private time with my hubby to whom I could just talk and cry like a baby and finish it! I live in a culture where asking for a little private time for myself or with hubby can be considered rude – and so I shut up and it kept building up inside me. It is also atmost important you get bonding time with your baby. Whether skin to skin or just private time with your baby and ofcorse you need some private time for yourself too. I was so mad and depressed even with all the celebration mood around.
I will not blame anyone, all where being protective about the baby and since I was a new mom everyone wanted to make sure I did not make any mistake. Whole night my son wouldn’t sleep, so in the day my mom would take him and let me sleep (mostly for a maximum of 1 hour before my son wouldn’t take the bottle anymore). She never let me bath him no matter how much I insisted until he was around 3 months old (she would say she didn’t want me doing any bendings and stretchings until my stitch healed). She would cook for me, even those traditional concotions mom’s are made to eat after delivery. My sister would sit up whole night with me talking or watching movies. She really kept me from turning into zombie from lack of sleep. 😀 My father would buy me anything I ask for and even what I don’t..he he.. He would never let me carry a handbag! My in-laws bought me fruits and vegetables to make sure I ate well. All in all I was really being spoiled and pampered. I don’t mean I hate them for this or I wanted them all to disappear! I’ll never enter paradise if I don’t be grateful for them. My only issue was a little as 5 minutes of privacy. I wish they understood my this situation too!
I feel people need to be educated about the emotional state of a new mother and how to deal with it. Most times they just need to talk, be comforted, appreciated or just left alone for sometime. They might really talk weird things and cry about nothing – but understand they cant control it. Please avoid telling her things like, ‘don’t be silly!’, ‘everyone are doing all they can and you are complaining and crying’ or ‘you are not the first mother in the world!!!!’ Please don’t! Just listen to whatever crap she is telling and let her cry it out – DO NOT stop her! Stopping her is the biggest mistake!
Husbands can often end up thinking the wives are blaming them for something they can’t understand. They would be like you are a strong person what happened to you, why aren’t you even smiling at me, why are these comments affecting you, ignore them and all that! My hubby did the same, poor thing was like you are only happy around the baby and when you talk to me you are crying, why? Finally I made him read about the postpartum blues and depression, I should have done this before hand itself instead I read all myself and thinking I could handle it.
Then came the part where you are jailed at home for 2 months! I understand its for the health of the mother but really! After all this, this only added to my suffocation! I wanted to get into open air, go to some beach or park. Soon after those 2 months I had to go back to work and until now I haven’t taken a break! Even after 1 year I still feel those mental blues coming up and I cry for silliest reason. I really need a break!
Everyone everywhere expects you to just be perfect and know what to do. For the first time in life I felt how much people are unfair to mothers. People don’t even wait to think twice before giving opinions and passing comments on my baby, his skin, his skin tone, his weight, my weight, my way of taking care of him, blaming me when he becomes unwell and stuff. It’s so unfair. Being polite and advising meaning my good is different but trying to show me down is so very different!
There were moments when I just wanted earth to swallow me up but I stayed on strong! Alhamdulilah! Allah has kept me going! I was a complete chaos. Everything was unorganized. It’s easy for people to complain than help me find solution. I started taking matters to my own hands and improve myself. My baby kept my mind busy and slowly I am getting back on track. Blogging, getting some me time, ignoring stupid comments, yes – I am learning it all!
I have a new found respect for mothers now. The pain, sweat and tears – it is just not easy guys! They deserve all the respect and luxury you can give them! Patience – a big thing I am learning from my tantrum loving son! 😀
I have found it important to devote some time and energy to yourself. It is very very hard I know – but it is important! World is selfish and nobody is going to care for your health like you would do! Take care of your body, your skin, your hair, your health and your talents as well. You need to keep yourself healthy and positive for whatever future has in store for you. If you are weak yourself, you will need people behind you first! There will be a bunch of people trying to bring you down, but listen to your body instead of them! You will definitely be happy and love yourself when you look good and are in good health. By looking good I don’t mean to spend hours in salon or anything – just take care and be happy with what you have. No use lamenting once your youth is lost – make positive and beneficial use out of it.
Letting go of some negative company was the hardest thing this year. When you are in wrong company, its just so hard to think straight, especially if you are a sensitive and shy person like me (I know, I seem to be bold and strong in my blog but in person you’d find me quiet, shy and timid 😉 guess I express more through writing than talking). So these people kept putting me down by commenting or mocking on everything I do. Example:- When I said I started blogging, I expected them to appreciate and support me but they said I was jobless (Right!). Or it would be gossiping! Like I hate people putting their nose into others business – they wore stupid dress combo, they have extra-marital affair, they said this, they did that – I HATE IT! Like you and I have a million things to correct within ourselves so who are we to judge others?? And this also creates a doubt in mind on what they talk about you when you are not around.
I often got into fights with them and they treated me like a boring person. I almost thought ‘Yea, I am really a jobless boring person!’. I felt as though I might feel left out and lonely without them (because I thought of them as best buddies), but the negative effect they had on me got to such a level that I finally decided to take action. Initially yes, I was lonely, and felt depressed. But guess God helps if your intentions are true and pure. He send me new friends and now Alhamdulilah I am so grateful and happy to Allah for helping me take right decision. I have a new circle of friends who are so positive and motivating. You know you are with the right company when they motivate you to do good, they make a better person out of you, they don’t make you feel degraded in front of others rather they talk good about you to others. They speak to you directly and openly when there is a problem than go around gossiping. When they talk only good about people around you and are not backbiters. Alhamdulilah I am in a happy situation now! Some of these friends are from the blogging circle and some at workplace. Thank you so much guys for being there for me! I love you sooo much! 😉 ♥♥♥♥
Do not let go of your hobbies and talents. Make time to indulge in them – be it arts and crafts, cooking, dancing, reading, collecting stuff, gardening, anything! Take up new hobbies – all this will make you a more positive and happy person.
In the end your attitude towards life will affect your children. Mothers are the first people children look up to! So being positive, happy and healthy will benefit them too! So be strong ladies, you are more capable of doing things than you give yourself (or are given) credit for!
♥ Abidha Basheer ♥