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They say life begins at 30. It is also said that you are reborn when you become a mother.
In my case, both of these events collided in such a way that I find my life to be on a perpetual collision course. I was 30 when I had my first child, a preemie born after a lot of struggles. By the time I reached my third trimester, there was no pregnancy/parenting book that I had spared. The only word that can describe my state of mind was – paranoia. Well, yes, obviously I was eagerly waiting to see my little one, name ready, suitcase packed (from the 6th month itself), having bid a slightly sorrowful bye-bye to my corporate job, neighbours warned that they may need to rush me to the hospital at some weird time in the night, in the event that my husband was travelling. The turn of events that led to my delivery merits another story altogether, but here I was, just out of the anaesthesia daze, baby in hand, a tiny kitten like creature, clueless and terrified and full of intense love.
They say that newborn babies are the most beautiful creatures on earth – well, I think that only the mother can feel that way. As I looked down, still a little drowsy, at the tiny human being that came out of me, a part of me, I sensed a new emotion in me that only other mothers can understand. I am not even going to try explaining it. But the very next minute I got a sneak preview of what life was going to be like for the next few months at least. She opened her tiny mouth and howled piteously, a cry that would be the very nemesis of my sleep for the next year or so. Sigh!
Murkoff Heidi and Sharon Mazel – what would have happened to gazillion “new born” mothers if not for you?!
From feeding routines that demanded waking up every 20-30 minutes, to endless walking around to burp post the feed, to countless susus and greenish poops, it is nothing short of an earth shattering miracle that I actually managed to sit on the bed leave alone sleep in it.
Hubby dear had long since shifted into the guest room, bag and baggage; and left mother and tiny creature to fend for themselves. The stitches hurt, one kind word or even the beginning of another lecture (well-meant or otherwise) brought my tear ducts alive. Severe postpartum depression along with a severe sense of inadequacy kicked in. Most of the times, I think sleeplessness and helplessness just went hand in hand. Forget intimacies, even a small hug was repulsive.
But somewhere in all these changes, something else was changing too. A tiny smile lit up my world. The gentle grasp of my finger in a pink fist that was smaller than a lemon brought utmost tenderness to my eyes. I was constantly aware of every small movement, the beginning of her kicking and flailing her limbs in mid-air, the gurgling and cooing sounds, those special smiles that seems to pop out only for me, the precious way she snuggled closer to me – well, I fell in love all over again and somehow the other changes just seemed to melt away with time.
Agreed, my body will never look or feel the same again, my sense of priorities have just undergone a 360 degree change and life in general no longer seems the same again, but then hey, I just did the most phenomenal thing – I created a new life and it is growing beautifully in front of my eyes and I love it to the moon and back.