My son has now been going to daycare for a month and has been sick for 2 and 1/2 weeks out of the 4.
The reaction from his grandparents is the typical brown family-overly concerned-frantic questioning-over the phone, “Why is he sick all the time?”, “Have you taken him to the Doctor? What did he say? Why is he sick all the time?”, “Don’t you cover him properly when you take him out?”, “He is too young to go to daycare. Why don’t you stay at home and be with him?”.
No, I like to bathe my toddler and leave him outside, buck naked, in the freezing rain. Sheesh!!! I am his mother and I care about him. Of course, he is dressed appropriately for winter when he goes out.
The problem is that everyone except you, the mother, knows how to take care of your child. This is especially seen in South Asian families. It is futile to explain that the kid is going to daycare for the first time, he will fall sick initially, while his immune system is building and getting stronger.
What do I do then? I do what any stressed out mother would do..”Hello? Hello? Can’t hear you…I’ll call you back later.” *Disconnect*
After a long absence, was inspired by my sister to get blogging again.
My son, Kabir, is now a year and a half, has started to go to daycare and I am back to work, although, part-time. He has become independent and I finally get some time to myself. *Cartwheels!*
Looking back, I miss the excitement of seeing him do things for the first time…his first tooth, first roll off the bed (!), the first time he crawled, his first steps and the first time he said “mama”. Now, he doesn’t need me as much as he used to. He likes to eat by himself and doesn’t need to be rocked to sleep anymore :(. My baby is growing up.
I remember on his first birthday, we put together a collage of Kabir’s pictures that captured his milestone moments and fun “First” facts. We celebrated his first birthday with close family and friends by holding a backyard party at our home. We avoided the typical “brown” party at a banquet hall and opted for a home party for the following reasons:
- Kabir’s comfort – we knew that the party would run for a few hours and for a one-year old that can seem like an eternity. Being in a known environment would give him comfort amongst the many people and loud music.
- Cost – although your child’s first birthday is one of the most important days in your life, it is really a celebration for the adults. Believe me, your baby will not remember anything. Therefore, we wanted a good, lively party without breaking our bank balance.
- Our guests – since most of our guests were parents with toddlers, we wanted the adults to sit back and relax while letting the kids run off their steam in the yard.
Don’t get me wrong, we still had a Thomas-the-train cake, a tent in case it rained, a caterer on the spot cooking appetizers on the tandoor and BBQ, fun games for the kids, music and decorations. In the end it worked out beautifully. We were able to spend time with our friends and family and rejoice in the happiness of our child.
Ok so the minute you tell your family you are pregnant, hell breaks loose. Everyone is ecstatic and raring to put their 2 cents in on what you should and should not do.
So to all the brown mommies-to be, here is my experience:
1. The first 3 months are extremely important and you’ve got to be careful but there is no need to forsake your nice shoes as long as they are comfortable.
2. If you lose weight in the first trimester – don’t worry about it! Family may try to stuff food down your throat since you are supposed to be “eating for two”, but eat foods that you like. I could hardly keep anything down on some days and survived on burnt toast or cold foods on these days. Since you may be experiencing bouts of nausea and may not be eating regularly, losing weight in the first trimester is quite normal. It will come back and more in the next trimester!
3. You start enjoying the pregnancy in the 2nd trimester. I loved my baby bump and never tried to hide under loose clothes or shawls.
4. The 3rd trimester is filled with anticipation and excitement. Rest as much as you can and pamper yourself. You may not be able to do so for sometime after the baby’s arrival.
5. Getting prepared for labour: Indian women are advised to mop floors in a crouching position, walk, drink milk laden with ghee and eat a dry fruit mixture in the last month of the pregnancy. It is said that these help in the delivery process of the baby and the baby will just “slide” out. Ladies, ladies, ladies….I beg to differ with this. I did all of the above in addition to eating pineapple, drinking raspberry leaf tea, eating spicy food and having sex but my baby was still 10 days overdue. I had to be induced, had a 36 hour labour and a vacuum assisted delivery.
Do what naturally is comfortable for you and your body. Your body will tell you during the course of the pregnancy what does and does not work for you.
As a brown couple married for 3 years, we had broken the general timeline of producing a baby within a year or two of marriage. After many snide remarks and emotional blackmail by relatives, we decided to go for it.
I always thought getting pregnant would never be an issue. After all, no one on either side of my family had trouble conceiving kids and I did not suffer from any health problems (except for a little extra weight here and there!). So when it came time to start trying, my husband and I were excited and expected it to happen sooner than later for us.
I can’t honestly say that we tried sincerely at first, but when nothing seemed to happen, I decided to do some research. I came upon a whole new world of couples desperately trying to conceive. There are numerous sites, blogs and chat-rooms dedicated to pregnancy-related issues including trouble getting pregnant. TTC (trying to conceive), LMP (last menstrual period) etc. were terms commonly used in these forums. It was mind-boggling to read about perfectly healthy couples undergoing fertility treatments. I felt myself being sucked into this world and soon, start panicking about why we were not getting pregnant.Long story short, after a year of numerous urine and blood tests, ultrasounds, a painful biopsy and the monthly disappointment of negative pregnancy tests, it turned out that I wasn’t ovulating. I was advised that it was likely due to stress. Stress that I was putting on myself and our relationship because I wasn’t pregnant yet! Vicious circle? Duh!!!
That is when my husband decided that we stop trying for a bit and if we are meant to get pregnant, we will. After 2 months of “not trying” and many bottle of wine, I had a missed period. Four positive pregnancy tests later, my husband and I thought it safe to celebrate. After all, we were going to be parents!For those couples out there who are calculating the best days to have sex, hanging upside down so that gravity can give the ” l’il swimmers” an extra push to get to the egg, and going through tons of pregnancy tests each month, I can only advise you to relax. Stressing out about it and making sex a mechanical process does not help at all. So, kick back and just enjoy the baby making process…!