It was a night of re-birth and a new beginning… a beginning of motherhood… a path never traveled before. In the month of November, 2014, I became a mommy to my daughter Shona (her nick name given by her dad) and since then life has changed upside down. From a digital marketing professional to a new mommy blogger, I have reached so far and do not wish to go back to corporate world again. My priorities and dreams have changed. I am enjoying and loving every bit of my life; trying to amend things, which really doesn’t make me feel good. Now changing gears; recalling the birth night of my daughter Shona – nurse came to my room and asked my mother-in-law that the new born is hungry and crying for milk. She asked her to mind the space and let her express milk from my breasts. I was hearing all what she was saying and asked how they would express it. She then asked me to open the buttons of my gown and help them as they squeeze my breasts to take out milk for my daughter. I nodded in shock and followed what she said. She then approached me and started doing her work. I clutched my mother-in-law’s hand so tightly and tried holding my tears but could not suppress my screams. We both were looking at each other (me and my mother-in-law); her eyes were trying to assure me that everything will be fine, Be Strong! Then after lot of trying and pressing, thick and yellow fluid came out and it wasn’t sufficient to satiate her hunger as told by nurse but whatever came, the nurse took it to the nursery to feed my baby through rice tube. My daughter was too weak to suck milk on her own so was fed through rice tube taken from her nose to stomach. My Doctor informed us that the first milk that mother produces is full of antibodies and immunoglobulin, which helps protect newborns as they come into our world of bacteria and viruses. It’s as though you’re giving her, her first vaccination. (Someone once estimated that if human colostrum could be commercially manufactured with all the same antibodies and immunoglobulin in it, it would cost somewhere around $80 an ounce). This pressing and crying continued for a few days and almost after 10 days she started sucking my milk on her own. I was given breast-feeding lessons by doctor and nurses. Doctors told me to feed the baby with expressed milk more as it would help her gain weight faster; sucking breast milk requires energy; our focus was to conserve her energy and help her gain weight and flee from the hospital. For almost 4 months, half of her feeds were given with expressed milk so that she could save her energy and gain weight. From nurses to my mother-in-law, everyone had a good show of my upper body. I had lost all shame. However, my mother and my MIL instructed me to cover the body with dupatta or shawl while breast-feeding, but we (me and my daughter) were comfortable without any cloth on my shoulder, so I dint give a damn to what they said. During that period, I became so obsessed with breast-feeding that I used to eat a lot to produce good milk for my daughter; when you breast-feed you also feel very hungry after every two hour. I remember when we were in hospital for 13 days, I used to put an alarm after every 1 hour, expressing the milk would take around 45 minutes and chasing nurses and putting the milk in rice tube would take almost 15 minutes; the whole process sums up to 2 hours and my daughter right after 2-hour would wake up and cry for mumma’s milk. During initial days, I used to panic a lot, I just could not see her crying for milk but gradually everything became a routine process. In September, 2015, Shona became 10 month old and I stumbled upon a parenting article of mc4k and felt inspired to start my blog on this platform and poured my heart out while writing the first article and then months passed, wrote some more articles and one day got a call to write paid article for Odonil and then for Dabur (felt more inspired) and then on 14th July, 2016 attended very first bloggers meet organised by Team mc4k. The venue for the meet was ‘Country Inn & Suites’ and the topic of discussion was ‘Breastfeeding’. I never knew that my journey of breast-feeding would take me to this hotel to discuss about my pains and screams of feeding my daughter. We were about 15-20 mommy bloggers who were invited for this discussion and we all were elated to discuss our similar and contrasting experiences of breast-feeding journey. For some it was a wonderful experience throughout while for others it was a painful experience. Some said they had a sufficient supply of milk to feed the baby while some said they could not feed the baby at all so opted for formula milk. Even one or two mums had got red spots of agony on their breasts (cracked nipples) and almost cried while narrating their experience. Some working mums continued breast-feeding their babies only for 6 months while some others are continuing beyond because they feel that it is their private time with their babies. They want to have that special feeling with them and want to nurture the special bond with them. I feel whether you have breast-fed your baby or not (because of personal reasons), you are equally special for your baby… no matter what people say about you!
Having said that, I would like to thank mc4k team for providing us this platform, where we can share our parenting experiences with everyone and also giving us new opportunities to explore and soar. Love you guys. :*
This article was originally published here.