Motherhood In The Times Of COVID
Motherhood is hard, but it’s doubly hard and challenging when you’re bringing up your bundle of joy at a time when the world is reeling from the pandemic. Though my journey of motherhood has been a joyride, it hasn’t been without its fair share of challenges. Here’s how I coped with them-
I breastfed my baby for five months, following which COVID struck- first my baby, and then me. When I had COVID, I isolated myself from my baby for a few days. Consequently, my supply dropped as I was feeding him much less than before. After recovery, I had no supply and I rued the fact. I couldn’t visit a lactation consultant for the fear of COVID and took telephone consultations. For two weeks, I consistently kept trying to breastfeed my baby, however, things were not the same as before and I was heartbroken that he was purely on formula feed. One day, it dawned upon me that my baby was still thriving on formula- achieving all his milestones well, growing well and most importantly, happy. I also realised that I was less tired, losing weight more quickly and definitely happier. It was a win-win for both of us and I never regretted not being able to breastfeed anymore.
- Giving birth
I gave birth in December 2020- a time when COVID was at its peak. In the labour room, I was all by myself with doctors and nurses, without any family members to give me solace. But I kept breathing exercises, thinking of the moment when my baby was just a few hours away from me and most importantly, I was my biggest strength and support system. I was upbeat and optimistic throughout the journey of labour and it truly helped me sail through despite giving birth with a mask on. Mind you, I did not take it off even for a second.
- Battling anxiety
We have all heard of postpartum depression and anxiety. Usually a happy-go-lucky person, I found myself in the throes of this monster after giving birth. I was crying every night- twice, for no reason. It was harder being a mother during the pandemic because I couldn’t venture out to battle anxiety or meet friends. After some counselling with the doctor, I realised I needed to get out of the one room I had restricted myself and my baby too. I started walking more, listening to music, watching movies, dipping my feet in warm water with face masks on, binging on Netflix while breastfeeding and reading. It helped me stay afloat.
- Support groups
Social media turned out to be a boon for me. I turned to popular and celebrated social media handles to have my questions answered. One time that was really heart winning for me is when a stranger-mom and I connected with each other over Facebook when we both had COVID at the same time. We were each other’s source of support and motivation through the time.
Up until 6 months, I did not take my baby out at all. Consequently, he was becoming shy, fearful, and anxious. But on his 6-month birthday, I took him out on a stroll. He was extremely scared of the outside world, but with daily strolls and after the COVID situation got better and more relatives began to drop in to meet him, he started to become more comfortable and less anxious and scared of new places and faces. I would highly recommend introducing your baby to the outer world by taking him on a stroll in the balcony or your lawn and making him interact with your neighbours from afar.
Namrata Gulati Sapra is a passionate part time journalist blogger and a fulltime passionate mommy, whose journey in motherhood is nothing like she expected it to be, she believes. When she isn't blogging or mommying, she is enjoying her cuppa and Netflixing!
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this post are the personal views of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of The Mom Store.