I’ll be honest.
I was never a baby-fan…or rather, I just wasn’t a baby magnet. When I see babies, I just freeze and sometimes I think they freeze up too. We would look at each other for a minute or two, try to figure each other out and along the way, either one of us would just give up. It’s like going to the cashiers with a boatload of goods and she stops using the barcode scanner, look you in the eye, you look back and well, nothing clicks. The same happens with children.
Overtime, I begin to tell myself that maybe I’m just not cut out to be a mother. I look at some of my friends and my cousins, and they handle children so well. Me? Well, I just freeze. So you have to understand that I really felt that motherhood wasn’t me at all. I don’t understand babies, I have my own little problems and well, I just didn’t see myself as a motherly person. Having said that, it didn’t mean that I didn’t want children – of course I want babies. I just wasn’t quite sure of what sort of parent I wanted to be or if I could handled it all.
Then I got married and when we started talking about raising a family, that got me thinking. I wasn’t quite warmed up to children yet so what more babies? We ventured onward into the unknown anyway. I figured along the way that no one person is born ready to tackle babies. Most of the time, it all boils down to experience and since I didn’t have nieces or nephews to practise on, I was left with just one option (which isn’t even an option) – to practise on my own child. Hah.
When I got pregnant, I realized that this was it. No more chances to experiment. So I did the next best thing – I bought books and read up. One of the most memorable things I remember seeing was this – “Women are pregnant for nine months for a reason and one of it is called preparation”. Preparation here doesn’t mean buying a manual and learning to drive with that manual beside you. What it does is that it give you a certain edge in the fact that you have an idea of what you’re doing and not just jumping into the water blindly. Especially important for a person like me who isn’t all that baby-friendly. Nil often teased me whenever we go for my antenatal check-ups because I never seem to have any questions (because I know what’s common and what’s not OR I’d do some read-up on this test and that test, etc).
For a few months, I ruminated over the kind of mother I wanted to be, the things I wanted to teach my child, the things I wanted them to not pick up at first impulse…many things. I started following blogs of parents I wanted to be like and formulate my own parenthood strategy according to what I read/saw or observed. I remember fondly talking about wanting to breastfeed for at least six months, if not a year. I wanted to be a stay-at-home mum for the first two years of my child’s life. I wanted them to learn cooking together with me. I wanted to be those mums who are involved in their children’s life without the appearance of a maid (common in these parts of the world). I wanted a lot, I remember. In that sense, I was quite greedy. *grin*
I forgot that sometimes wanting certain things isn’t always the same as getting them.
To be continued…
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