A few nights ago, I woke up in the middle of the night in agony. Crying out, I held on to the back of my leg as sharp pain shot up registering quite strongly to my barely awake mind. My husband Victor leaped up and insistently asked “What is it? What is it, Bilha?” I could barely answer through my pain. He switched on the bed side light. I checked my leg to see if it was dismembered, the pain was excruciating. For the next 90 or so seconds, it was a nightmare until the tightness eased off and only a dull ache lingered in my calf. I finally managed to say “Muscle pull… My leg.. Oh God! It hurts!” Victor had been frantically checking my bulging stomach. Imagining the worst…….. he thought something had gone wrong with our pregnancy. I knew however that muscle pulls are common during pregnancy.
Although the muscle pull incident was unfortunate there’s always a light side to things. My experience also gave me an idea – Alarm clocks should be configured to trigger a mild muscle pull. The pain from a muscle pull will effectively leave you very wide awake
The ups and downs encountered by Mums as we carry our bundles of joy are ceaseless. So every day is a new day with new experiences and different happenings.
I was a complete novice on parenting
When I was expecting my first born daughter Irene, I was a complete novice on parenting. I listened to each and every piece of advice I came across. The things I was told were quite contradicting. One day, I would hear that “Oh yes, you should stimulate the baby by rubbing your tummy!”, then the next day someone else would say “Oh no, you should never ever rub your tummy!” Each myth I was told had a real life example to back it up – no less! It is not just family and friends who spread these kinds of half-truths. The contradictory information is everywhere. When I eventually went into labour, the nurse on duty was very dedicated to me. She emphasized the need for me to eat, because “I would need the strength later”. Obediently, I ate. However no matter what I ate, I could not hold it down for more than 10 minutes. I kept throwing up. At the end of the day, the exhaustion from retching all day was more than from the delivering of my daughter! The following day another nurse came by my bed and I mentioned my ordeal to her. She promptly clarified that when the labor is induced, as was my case, acute nausea is a common side effect.
I find that this time I have no special craving other than the need for speed
They usually recommend that one should not eat! Nowadays I go by the mantra – Do you have some parenting advice to share? Ha! Show me some scientific statistics.
I am carrying my 2nd pregnancy. And this time there are no special cravings other than the need for speed. Most of my friends know me to be a fast driver and recently, so have the traffic police. They have pulled me over a total of four times for committing various traffic offenses. Each time, at the sight of my rather round baby bump, the policeman has waved me off and wished me a very nice day. I am still amazed at the favors that come with pregnancy. I personally wish it was possible to activate and also deactivate the stomach bulge at will. I would turn it off when it is bedtime then sprawl out to sleep as I please, then turn it back on when I need a favor
Each pregnancy is a different experience and comes with its own peculiarities
No pregnancy is the same even when it is the same mother with her different pregnancies. Each pregnancy is a different experience and also comes with its own peculiarities. If there is anything I have learned from my pregnancies and my parenting journey, it is the value of making informed decisions. The amount of information we have at hand will facilitate the actions we make. Seeking information is as important as it empowers thought and actions enables us learn from the experiences of others. As the famous American journalist Walter Cronkite put it – “Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.” With limited information, we are mentally handicapped to act, to decide for ourselves OR our dependents. You and I have no excuse. We need to be knowledgeable mums who are well informed and also have the discernment to question myths, read about their implications and know the pros and cons to ensure we are not led down the paths of foolishness. We also need to be very clear that what has worked for someone else’s baby or pregnancy may not work for ours because we are all very unique and children are individual in their experiences.
There is no excuse to be ignorant
The knowledge in libraries and data banks needs to make the grand migration into our minds. With the access we currently have to various knowledge platforms, there is no excuse to be ignorant. Let us learn for ourselves…..Let us learn for our unborn children……