What I Like... and Dislike About Being a Hands-on Mama

It's been four months since I gave birth to my darling son and so far I'm surviving. LOL! Motherhood is such a lovely experience especially when your child makes eye-to-eye contact with you or clings to you and would never let you go. But honestly, it's not a walk in the park thing. While there are lots of wonderful things being a hands-on (and yayaless) mama gives, there are also some things I dislike about it. Here they are:

1. Lack of sleep
Like most mothers, I find the first couple of months difficult. Aside from having to deal with my CS pain and recovery, I also kept on waking up to feed my child (breastfeeding mama here!), make sure that he is not cold or overheating, check for soiled diaper, and often, to check if he is still breathing (yes, I'm one paranoid mama). Lucky if I can get a three-hour uninterrupted sleep but that is not the case usually. Thankfully, now that my son is a bit older, he no longer needs to be fed every hour or so. Additionally, the number of times he poop has now decreased to once or twice a day from around five times a day when he was younger.

2. Lack of or less me-time
When you become a mom, the concept of "me" seems to disappear instantly. Almost everything you do is dependent on your child's needs, schedule, likes, etc. For moms like me who doesn't have a helper, it is already a luxury if you can enjoy a 15-minute bath time and surely it is hard to find time for a waxing session, bonding with your girlfriends or other activities you used to do before the baby. And now that my son is already four months old, there is nothing in the world that he wants but to be with me, to latch, to see me, hear my voice and maybe even just to smell me. If there is no trace of my presence around, he becomes fussy and will eventually cry. My husband suggested that we get someone to help me take care of him so that I will have time for myself but I think I am not yet ready for him to develop strong attachment to people other than myself, my husband and our families. :D Anyway, this phase won't last long (maybe just five years or so) so I'm willing to sacrifice. I know I can get as much me-time as I want when he is already of school age.

3. Can't leave the house immediately
Mothers are emotional human beings particularly when it comes to their children. Being away, be it for an hour or a day, can be a real struggle and that makes leaving the house difficult. Additionally, it is motherly instinct to ensure that everything is in order before leaving - sterilize feeding bottles, prepare milk, give bath, feed, etc. So when I need to leave the house by 9 am, I should be awake not later than 6:00 am to give me enough time to do all the things that I need to do.

Motherhood is not just about dislikes though. The likes actually outweigh the dislikes in my case.

1. The feeling of being needed
Don't you just love it when someone needs you in order to survive? I do! The son depends on me for almost everything, particularly for his milk. And since my husband works during the day, I do all the things that must be done to ensure his wellness. This resulted to him being clingy and always looking for his mama. The feeling is priceless!

2. Stress-reliever
Motherhood is indeed one of the most stressful jobs I have experienced, BUT the baby himself is a great stress-reliever. His toothless grin can take away all the stress and make the day brighter.

3. Gives reason to live
Knowing that someone depends on you in order to survive motivates you to work harder and spend smarter for financial stability, stay healthy so you may live longer and behave appropriately so you can be his role model.

4. Unites everyone
Petty fight between you and your partner? The baby will "find a way" for you to make up. There are times when I give my husband silent treatment for doing, or not doing, something but I usually find myself talking to him again just because of our baby. :D Haven't seen your friends in a long time though they live just a few minutes drive away from you? The baby will definitely make them, especially the childless ones, visit you. If schedule permits, they would even ask you to spend a day out at the beach, mall or anywhere you can all relax, bond and have fun.

5. Conversation starter
With a baby, you will never run out of topic to talk about. A fellow mom at the doctor's clinic may ask about your cloth diaper, a grandmother at the park may wave and talk to your child for it reminds her of her own grandchildren and your friends will comment how your child, who is also their godchild, grow up so fast.

Motherhood, especially a hands-on mama is indeed challenging, stressful even. But as you can see, the likes outweigh the dislikes in my case and even if there is only one thing to like about motherhood, I think it will be enough reason to do it over again. Wanna know what that one thing is? LOVE!

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