By Santhoshi M
“The minute you have the baby in your hands and gaze into her eyes you will be in love with her”
This is something all of us are constantly told and all new mothers are expected to feel an instant bond with their newborns. Unfortunately, this wasn’t the reality in my case. I mean my logical brain knew that we had brought a human earthside and this tiny human is our responsibility for another 20 years and life will drastically be different going forward. My husband on the other hand was a natural from the first time he held Taara, his BRIGHTEST STAR.
The first few weeks is intense for any parent, series of ups and downs and I was no exception to it. Breastfeeding, Sleep deprivation, soreness, well-meaning advice from everyone and adding to all of it was the PANDEMIC (our little one made her entry during the peak of the first wave, May 2020). You read that breastfeeding happens naturally and it isn’t supposed to hurt, but trust me in the beginning it does, even if you are doing it right. Then, slowly, the lack of sleep starts to not only catch up with you but overtake you and rule your life. Physically, my feet and legs were still swollen.
While trying to figure out how to navigate this phase of our lives and do the best one could as a parent, you get SO much advice, but I have to tell you the one that topped the list was, "do not hold the baby for too long she will get used to it." I wish someone told me a year back that it was absolutely normal to hold your baby as long as she wants to be held and that there was nothing wrong with the baby or with me as a parent. We weren’t doing it wrong.
Despite all the don’ts we decided to just listen to our little one, we decided to completely surrender to parenthood. I remember holding her most of the time. Some days, holding her was all I did and both of us felt good after. Slowly but steadily there was a deep emotional connect or bond or whatever it is supposed to be. And there definitely is no other relationship like this ONE.
We realised there are no set rules around this, no limits. We make our own rules and this is the time to write our story TOGETHER.
Our little one is 16 months old now and we still hold her and rock her to sleep for all her naps. She sleeps with us in our bed every night. Of course, we get tired and touched out at times, it’s all too much after a long day at work and sometimes we find ourselves overwhelmed. But we know that one day our little bundle of joy will choose to sleep by herself and would also be okay with little cuddles and kisses from us. So right now we know that we are giving our baby exactly what she needs.
If we could, we definitely will take this crazy ride all over again with her. The only difference would be that, we would do it with hell a lot more confidence and a tonne more of holding, snuggles and kisses.
To every new parent, let your instincts take over. Allow yourself to slow dance with your child, to instinctively know what they need without needing to know why. Again a gentle reminder, YOU’RE NOT DOING IT WRONG!
About the Author-
Santhoshi is a first time mom (working mom in every sense) to Taara who is 16 months old. She is married to her best friend. Anddd a believer of Unicorns and Beanstalks.