What About The Mother

Everyone’s cheerful. Everyone’s eagerly awaiting to see the newborn! Is it going to be a boy or a girl? Is the baby going to be healthy? Will she/he latch properly? How much will they weigh? What colour? What time, What date? So much speculation and anticipation about the arrival and the early days of a baby! BUT WHAT ABOUT THE MOTHER?

I recently read a small write-up on the gram and was truly touched. Being a new mom myself, I related to the content. I am inspired to share it with others who did not get the opportunity to read it and those who need to fully understand that motherhood and being a mom are not all smiles and happiness all the time as portrayed in the movies, reels, and on the tube. 

Not all mothers are asked if they are keeping well. Not all mothers are asked if they ate, want water, need help, or a break. 

The article started, “everyone wants to hold the baby, but who holds the mother?”

With all the hormonal changes, the arrival of the baby, and the life-changing experience of labour, the new mother has already gone through so much stress, pressure, and anxiety. There’s hardly any time to bond with her new baby, let alone have time to breathe and take care of herself weeks or even months after delivery! 

From all the unsolicited advice and “gyaan” from different people, the inconsolable crying of the baby, not-so-understanding family, and many many changes in her body, what a mother most needs is attention, care, and space for herself. She deserves it too. She needs time to heal her body and mind. She needs to prepare for motherhood. She needs to breastfeed which is not as easy as many think it is – it is painful, uncomfortable, and taken for granted. 

From guilt, fear, stress, anxiety, sudden bursts of crying, emotional fluctuations, mental breakdowns, lack of self-confidence, and changes in the body, a mother goes through so much that not only are they less understood, but they are constantly provoked and forced to suppress their feelings despite having no reason to do so. 

From being body shamed for putting on weight, going on a guilt trip for not lactating, feeling sorry and sad when the baby cries, feeling drowsy and suffocated due to lack of sleep, and having to not just be there for her baby, but her family, relatives, husband, house, office, her career; she’s not given a second to pause and take a breather. 

Her back aches but no one’s there to massage her and give her some time to unwind. Her stomach grumbles but she needs to feed the baby, her cravings for ice cream can’t be met, her sleep has to be compromised, her body is bloated, her breasts change shape and size every two days, her face dulls, her hair falls, her hands shake and her eyes tear, but she stays a mom and she’s got no way out. 

Be her escape. Be the change. Be there for her. Tell her she’s doing fine. Tell her she’s strong. You never know what such small acts of kindness can do to a new mom. Maternity leave is not for her to care for the baby alone, but to heal and be there for herself too. Understand her and make her smile. Gift her something nice and do not advise. Share what you know and do listen to her. You are not only helping her as a mother but the baby too by helping her be a better mother.

As everyone’s eager to hold the baby; you hold the mother. 

Follow Aakanksha Dinah 

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