So Baby A turned one month old a week ago alhamdulillah!
Time really does fly huh? It felt like the longest and the shortest one month in my life. Like even Ramdhan doesn’t feel that short. The days just fly by as I care for my little bub. Things are settling into a routine now alhamdulillah. Before, it was just erratic and all over the place. I was half undressed most of the time because A wanted to nurse so much. It was a blur of clasping and unclasping nursing bras, getting him to latch, changing diapers and lullabying A to sleep.
Now it still consists of those things, just in a calmer, more orderly fashion alhamdulillah alhamdulillah. I pray that it gets better for all of us from this point on. Ameen!
So I was quite paranoid about taking care of my son before this. I wanted to do everything on my own. Not because I don’t trust others but honestly i felt like it was my responsibility alone to take care of his needs. I didn’t want to burden and trouble others by asking them for help. I became really jittery, anxious and almost always snappy.
I broke down a million times in front of J because I couldn’t soothe A and when someone “rescued” him from my arms he immediately fell asleep. I felt like such a terrible mother. I was afraid of people coming over in case he would suddenly want to nurse and I had to entertain the guests because I was too afraid to nurse in front of other people.
I was afraid of bringing him out because he was so fussy at that point of time and I could not figure what was wrong.
Needless to say, I was exhausted each and every night. And not because no one helped, but because I adamantly wanted to do everything on my own.
Gila agaknya aku ni. *rolls eyes*
Until we went to the clinic the other day for A’s jab. The nurse checked his weight and commented that he was on the small side. I was surprised given that I had to have an emergency C sect just because he was too big just a month ago! So I asked the nurse if I should supplement his feeds with formula. She said I could but it could also be because A doesn’t know how to latch on properly yet. Infants take some time to learn proper latching and so before they latch properly, they don’t get as much milk as they would when they drink from a bottle.
I came out from the room with a cranky baby and J suggested that we feed him first. True enough after 20 mins of feeding (my milk already finish k aft 20 mins). he was still hungry. So J made some formula milk and fed it to him. A gulped it down and after burping fell straight to sleep. I could even eat in peace without having to walk around and munch just to keep him asleep.
It amazed me that all this while, his crying could have been that he was just…hungry. And because he was latching on every 1 to 1.5 hours I could not figure out that he was not getting enough to stay full for longer! I bad blamed myself for my milk being too watery and bla bla bla but it was just that the skill to get the most out of the feed is a learned one in babies.
Instead of feeling like crap that my supply was not yet enough for him, it made realise how sombong and crazy I was to think that I could take care of A on my own. It was as if Allah was showing me that “mar pls eh your milk also you cannot make enough for him what makes you think you can raise him alone?”
It was quite…liberating in all honesty. I stopped feeling guilty about giving him formula because all I wanted was a happy and healthy baby. Stinging on formula and sticking to breast milk alone would mean my baby would be constantly hungry and I would fall further into depression by having to latch him on for hours! It wasn’t a matter of the pain when he latches it was also that my ability to do anything would be diminished when I was nursing (I know you can nurse on the go but I havent reached that level of mastery k).
So when I stopped feeling like I was cheating with feeding formula, I let others in. I let J feed our baby when I finished nursing him to supplement his feed while I had some me time to shower, eat or pump my milk. I let my baby sleep while I napped next to him. I asked my family members to help me babysit for a little pockets of time while I readied his bath or went to the toilet.
And it feels like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders alhamdulillah. Perhaps asking for help isn’t so bad. Perhaps asking for help does not show that I am weak. Perhaps asking for help meant that I love my child enough to give him the best care possible, even when it meant enlisting someone else’s help. Perhaps Allah made me feel the full weight of doing things alone to make me understand how weak I actually am. Perhaps it is also His way of showing me how amazing his Love and Mercy is.
May the time with our children be magical insyaAllah. May they grow up to be amongst the filial, pious and loved by the Almighty and His Messenger (pbuh). And may our relationship with Him and His servants always be positive insyaAllah. Ameen!
Keep us in your prayers! Adu’aa bidu’aa.