Tuesday, October 24, 2017

They say it takes a village.

My son is 12 weeks today and has been out of the NICU for almost 3 weeks. Thank God. These 3 weeks have been a whirlwind of crazy for me. Most of which has been good crazy but some, not so good. While my son was in the NICU often times I found myself sad and confused. Motherhood is supposed to be this awesome part of your life or so I thought. Well-wishers kept warning me about post-partum depression and in a way made me feel I could really be going through it. I love my son more than I ever thought I was capable of loving another human being. I am in awe of this tiny little miracle I helped create, this little piece of me. But hoping that he would fix all the stress that a NICU stay can bring is too steep a price to ask, isn’t it? I now realize, I was depressed but anyone would be. Having your new born baby diagnosed with Down syndrome in the OR even before you get to see him and then taken to the NICU for surgeries without giving you a minute to breathe or absorb this information can make anyone feel overwhelmed and left feeling a little lost.

I am not the kind of person who confides in people easily (ironic how I am now writing a blog about it), so this is very hard for me. There are very few people in my life that I can say anything to, without the fear of being judged or misunderstood. There are so many things that I am confused about but unable to talk about it with anyone for the fear of my words being misconstrued. I don’t understand how people forget to respect your privacy just because you are a mother who is breastfeeding. I dislike that people just walk-in while you are pumping and then just shrug or sometimes even sit to chat with you. I also don’t appreciate how people come to help you but the only thing they actually do this hold your baby while you are running around trying to manage everything. Most often, people forget that your body also needs rest and you need time to bond with this baby you have been carrying inside of you for 9 months. I hate when people don’t give you the time or space to do so. If you worry too much about your baby, you are being a helicopter mom. If you are less fussy then you are being a careless mom. What kinda mom shaming is this? Why can’t we let every woman decide what kinda mother she wants to be? And, as long as she isn’t harming her baby, leave her be.

I am fortunate enough to have a loving family that could take time out to be with me but sometimes this support can get overwhelming too. I am seeing how having my in laws here has forced my husband to try and balance between being a good son, a good father, a good employee, a good brother, and a good husband. One can’t successfully be good at everything at the same time. We as human beings always see our problems as big and fail to empathize with others. Sometimes, I expect my loved ones to read my mind and understand when I need them to support me and when I need them to back off. That is unfair.

I don’t think we need a village to help raise a baby; we need loving and caring parents who are given a chance to figure it out. We need a society where people respect other people’s choices. People understand that not everyone can be the way you are, and not everyone gets it right from the get go. Be patient. Be understanding. Don’t try to make everyone a copy of yourself. See the differences and appreciate them, learn from them and thrive in them. Our differences are what make us more beautiful.

Peace out

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