Lifestyle, Mommy Musings
Mommy Musings Monday-Back to the grind
You don’t know how important breasts are. Or breasts that can produce milk for that matter. Forget all that you have ever imagined or convinced yourself that breasts were made for. You only know the importance of breasts when you become a lactating mother. Or when you live with a lactating mother.
Growing up on a farm, I learnt how to milk cows at the tender age of 11. It was pretty easy. Perhaps because my favorite pet was this Friesian cow we named queen. I don’t know if a cow qualifies to be a pet, but that was mine. She was a beauty to behold and we had this chemistry going on. So when I first decided to learn how to milk, Queen was my guinea pig. I got the hang of it so fast and loved it, so much so one nasty Ayrshire cow that was everybody’s nightmare when it came to milking had nothing on me. Her kicks didn’t cow me (hehe see what I did there). Because I had learnt from the best. From Queen. So when I got my first baby and was advised to start expressing and storing milk from week one, I thought it was going to be a walk in the park. But I thought wrong! For starters, never compare women to cows (ouch that sounds nasty!). But my point is, it took lots of concentration, happy thoughts, a good mood and so much more to get that milk out. How do you get to be in a good mood when the longest sleep you have had in a while lasted only 3 hours? I hated it. Needless to sadly, when it was time to go back to work I did not have enough stock. I had to substitute breast milk with formula.
Fast forward to the second baby, I have mastered the art of expressing milk and I have quite an impressive stock to my name. Perhaps because it has been an easy ride filled with lots of sleep, good thoughts, happy moods, you name it. I am going back to work in two days’ time and I am hell bent on seeing that she breastfeeds exclusively for six months. However, let me introduce you to Doctor Zip, as my elder daughter calls her. She is cold as ice, but the best pediatrician I have come across yet. When I told her about my achievement, how my stock of milk was enough to feed all the neighborhood kids, she laughed in my face. She told me that at the rate my baby was breastfeeding, my stock would only last three days maximum. I told her that I plan on continuing to express milk even when I am at work but she said that no miracle would change the situation. That the demand was way bigger than my supply. And that formula milk is there for a reason otherwise babies would die (her words). That I should embrace formula. I am determined to prove her wrong. On the positive side, I am happy to have had a chance to stay at home with my daughter for almost four months. My mom told me of a hairdresser who had to resume work when the baby was two weeks old. She was paid on commission and was the sole breadwinner. It broke my heart.
You have to admire the strength of a woman. We go through so much. Carrying a pregnancy for nine months causing massive changes to our bodies (insert enlarged nose and lips and darkening of the skin-I don’t get what these organs have got to do with the life growing inside the belly!) is really the toughest job on the planet. Not forgetting the whole laboring (cue in screams akin to Luhya women at a funeral) and giving birth! I still get traumatized every time I think about the labor and all the injuries I had to deal with after the baby came out. All the while, nothing changes for the hubs. No matter how supportive our men may be, they will never truly understand what we go through to bring forth a life. As if that’s not enough, raising kids is also a task and a half. That is why sometimes I like to throw him in the deep end just so that he can appreciate what I go through. So last night, I decided to hang out with the girls and left him in charge. Shower-check, dinner-check. Both kids were good to sleep, his job was just to watch over them. And of course feed the infant on demand with my precious stock of breast milk. With all the random escapades away from the baby, no wonder Doctor Zip says not even a miracle will help. At midnight, in the middle of juicy gossip, my phone rang. It was the hubs. There is no prize for guessing what he had to say. He wasn’t calling to check up on me, neither was he calling to brag about his parenting skills. He sounded defeated. The babies were crying. He was crying with them. I reassured him, put down the phone, sipped my hot chocolate and went back to catching up on our youth!
Cheers to all the women out there. For their stoicism and tenacity. Cheers to the strength of a woman!
[…] feeds with formula (sadly I lost the battle and if you don’t know what I am on about read this), I am not about to give up breastfeeding all together. And thanks to my Medela breastpump, I get […]
This is a beautiful piece written with such honesty. I love it.
Motherhood is a blessing that can’t really be summed up even with the most beautiful adjectives. Lucky you have stayed with your baby for 4 months.
We all get anxious when we have to resume work. But God always comes through. I resumed work when my baby was 3 months. I have managed to exclusively breastfeed and now she will be turning 6 months in a few days.
You will both do fine.
Thanks for the encouragement Aida, the struggle continues 🙂
I really enjoy the mommy musings. Pls keep them coming. You can also put a category for them.
Thanks Caroline. Keep coming back for more and yes I will most definitely add a category for them!
[…] time. If you are a stranger to my milk issues and Doctor Zip’s manenoz, read all about it here (I seriously could not get an English word to express this. Damn our Kenyan lingo!). At 8.30am, I […]
Fantastic read!!! Thumbs up to all the mums keeping it together.
Mums are superheroes I tell you! Thanks for reading.
The gift of Co – creating with God, it’s an experience that changes ones life…..I’m staring at my Wairimu right now as she breastfeeds and the thought of how God put it all together is amazing…
Coming for expressing lessons coz heeey….I tried it juzi and gave up?
Bringing forth a life into this world is a miracle indeed. You are welcome mama for milk expressing lessons 🙂
Hahahha….ati umuhimu wa matiti….nyc one cuzo…..i admire you the whole way…..nice piece……and kudos to the women folk in our society…..a great piece indeed!!!
Thank you cuz. You are not doing too bad yourself! Well done and thanks for reading.
You see why I insist you are a magician?
If that’s the case then all women are. More so mothers. And wives.
Thanks for writing this real reflection of motherhood. I am glad you get to have some time with the gals. That keeps you sane. Now…about Dr. Zip, could I get her contact? I am in dire need of a good pediatrician (albeit a cold one, LOL!). Food allergies and eczema are threatening to bwogo me and the LO!
Glad you enjoyed the read Mukami. Emailing you her contacts shortly. All the best with your LO.
Lol, I hated queen!! She loved bullying me. Damn that cow.
Anywho, I feel Mr.D’souza: Enough times babysitting Xena had me having a few frustrating moments. Can’t imagine now the two of them uncontainable
And on that note, I concur with you, cheers to the womenfolk in our society who take care of themselves, their children and their husband all at once! Heh, not looking forward to that. I can barely sustain a potted plant. :\
Poor potted plant ????. Well please do not give up, I will be there to help. And so will Xena, payback for all the babysitting you did her.
Queen bullied you because you were/are team light skin ??
Loool! Who knew animals could be racists too? 🙁
waaaar! You just scared the living out of me. I ain’t getting babies any time soon for sure. This is crazy walai.
I now appreciate all mothers an extra bunch.
God gives women sufficient grace to get through it all. Plus nothing compares to the Joy that children bring us. You will be fine Jay.
I really hope so. The experiences of child bearing I have heard scare me to death especially the pain. #overthinking
Woi! This piece has finished me! Just too funny! All the best as you resume work mama!
Sounded like an Insha titled “Umuhimu wa Matiti” hehe. I don’t know how I will survive being away from this munchkin for a whole day but then again gotta make some mulla! Thanks ma for reading!
umuhimu wa matiti #dead! nice piece
I know you agree with me min Wang, right? Thanks for reading!