With my youngest going into kindergarten in the 2014/2015 school year (can you tell I’m excited?), I’ve been reflecting on my experience as a young mother and whether I successfully passed through this stage.
In retrospect, I’ve noticed that moms with young kids, hang their hat on three categories – the pregnancy, giving birth and breastfeeding. So I have decided to review my experiences and give myself a grade for each task. (Grades seem like a good benchmark to go with since we all know what an A means and an F means.)
Both my pregnancies were straight forward – morning sickness in the first trimester, minor fatigue, sciatica, hemorrhoids and vaginal varicose veins (Really – these suck and I will always have them.). But overall, a pretty standard pregnancy so I’ll give myself a “B”.
For my oldest, I was more than happy to take the drugs and pushed him out in 20 minutes flat. What do I remember about my first birth? Honestly, it was the nurses gossiping as they were sewing up my tear. (I figured that if they can gossip while stitching up my crotch, it’s all good!) With my youngest, he was 3 hours from start to finish (kinda like a nicely done turkey) and a completely natural birth at a hospital. Yahoo! I wear his birth like an invisible badge of honour and proudly toot my own horn when it comes to talking about labour.
I will say that for both birthing experiences, I owe a TON of credit to my doula. She helped me to manage my contractions and get me through labour in an encouraging and positive manner. I’m a huge fan of doulas. Therefore in the birthing department, I give myself an “A”
Ah..yes, this was very difficult for me. Yes, I know breast milk is best and I tried. Each child was breastfed for exactly 6 weeks. I couldn’t master it. I struggled with getting the correct latch with both my boys. With my oldest he wasn’t getting enough of the wholesome milk from the back of my boobs and then with my youngest, my breasts were like a sprinkler. Literally, he was choking on breast milk.
Both times it was a disaster so I closed up my udders and gave my kids formula. Did I feel better? Heck yes! Do I feel guilty that I didn’t breastfeed for 12+ months as the WHO recommends? Sometimes but then I realize that I did what was best for me, my kids and my sanity. But alas, in the area of breastfeeding I feel that I didn’t meet the expected norms of society these days and I often have to justify why my kids were on formula. With that in mind, I’ll give myself a “C-”.
Just to recap – a “B” for the pregnancy, an “A” for the birthing process and a “C-” for breastfeeding. But do these grades even matter? Not really. Because when I look at my boys, I see two happy and healthy growing boys. And that’s all the evidence I need to tell me that I did just fine.
Tell me – how do you feel about being a young mom? Comment below or tweet me@weebootMom