Mother's Day is a day where we celebrate mothers from all walks of life.
This Mother's Day, we spoke to a newly-minted mother and our fellow colleague, Siti Hawa, as she shares with us her journey towards motherhood thus far.
She answered questions including about how she deals with receiving unsolicited advice on how to raise her baby and if becoming a mother has made her a more responsible adult.
Most importantly, she honestly answered if she's seen a cuter baby than her own child.
What were you and your husband's reactions when you saw the two lines?
I actually woke up one morning and felt different. I didn't want to get my husband's hopes up for no reason so I sneakily ordered a test kit from Pandamart. It ended up being positive. 😂
I just woke my husband up and showed him the test kit and we both teared. Then we bought 10 more test kits to test over the next couple of days just to be sure.
Just to confirm, we're talking about a pregnancy test and not a Covid-19 test, right?
Have you become a more responsible person now that you're a mother?
I’m the youngest child in my family and it’s been years since I’ve had another living thing to keep alive. So yes I think I’m definitely more responsible now.
But really, all we have to do is change diapers, feed the baby, burp her and make sure she’s still breathing. How hard can it be... right? Right?! 😬
Speaking of poop... Does a baby's poop smell different?
Nature is kind. At first, a baby's poop doesn't smell AT ALL.
It's a different story when they start on solid food, though.
Be honest: have you seen a cuter baby than your own child?
Haha. Yes! Sorry baby! When I was pregnant people told me to look at lots of cute baby photos.
That said, not being biased or anything, but I think my baby is pretty dang cute too.
What are some things that you never thought you’d do until you became a mother?
I always thought I’d be a relaxed and chill mom. Since I became a mother, I’m the complete opposite.
I stare at her when she sleeps, track every ounce of milk she drinks, monitor how many times she poops a day, worry about colic, heat rash and anything else that seems off.
But this might just be a first-time mom thing, as I hear that mothers usually relax a little the second time around. We'll see.
What were some things that you weren’t warned about after becoming a mother?
I wasn’t prepared for how crazy the first few weeks after giving birth would be. I struggled to cope with the pain after giving birth. I had an episiotomy, which meant that the doctor had to make an incision in my nether regions so I could deliver my baby safely. On a scale of one to 10, the pain felt like an 11.
And let's not forget about the intense sleep deprivation, my hormones being all over the place, and the baby blues. I was also not prepared for how tough breastfeeding would be, from the physical pain to the mental pressure of producing enough milk for the baby.
The people around me and everywhere I looked on the internet said that breast milk is the "best" for a baby. In the first week of establishing my supply, we had to supplement with formula. When we bought it, it came with a disclaimer that “breast milk is best for babies”.
That definitely took a hit on my mental state at the time as I wondered if I was giving her the best. Thankfully, my husband reminded me that whatever I was giving was more than enough.
Oh man. :( On that note, have you received unsolicited advice on how to raise your child?
I received a lot of conflicting advice from friends and family.
For example, should I swaddle a newborn or not? Should I give the baby a pacifier? God forbid, the baby ends up with crooked teeth.
It can get overwhelming and confusing when you’re trying to decide what’s best for your baby. Ultimately I realise what’s best for my child is what works best for my family because a happy mum + dad = a happy baby.
If introducing a pacifier means more sleep and peaceful mealtimes then yes, please.
You've been a mother for at least five months now. Is it true when people on the internet say: "Motherhood is tough, but so worth it."
Motherhood is tough but someone has to do the job. I mean, where else on this earth can one order a tiny little human that looks like you or your husband? So yes, it is worth it at the end of the day.
But be prepared for lots of tears, confusion, frustration, and poop. Lots of poop. But also expect loads of happiness and love beyond what you’ve ever felt.
How are you celebrating your first Mother’s Day?
I want to celebrate my first Mother’s Day by doing absolutely nothing.
There’s no need to have a long day out filled with trying to squeeze in baby’s nap time, milk and finding time and place to pump.
Nope, I just want to order in (no dishes to wash please), lie down and cuddle my baby, thank you very much!
Top image from Siti Hawa and Unsplash.