Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Visiting a new mother.

It’s a boy!

The baby. The newborn baby is a boy.

No, not my baby. But, I am excited enough about it.

It has been a couple of weeks of me being away from the city, and after a few road trips and impromptu sight-seeing, I had a home alone moment. The people I came to visit (read parents) decided to travel and leave me in charge of the house. It would of course make more sense if there were actually people around for me to be in charge of (read siblings to order around),but no, everyone decided to leave when I arrived. It’s like they were sitting around with packed suitcases waiting for an opportune moment.

So, it was during this home alone moment that I received the great news that my cousin had delivered a baby boy. Overjoyed does not even begin to explain how I felt, and still do feel. This cousin has been like a sister to us since she lived with us from when I was in class six all the way to campus. Many years those are. Her being a first time mum is something that awakens exultant feelings in us.

Visiting her at the hospital and at her home has taught me a couple of things about motherhood that I decided to write about.

1. First time motherhood, is a first.
      When I visited her at the hospital, I hang around until it was time to change the baby’s clothes, and I remember us seated there looking at each other not really knowing how to do it. The cute thing was so delicate and fragile it just seemed to me if we lift his leg he would break to pieces.  
Being a first time mother means that you have to do it without prior know-how. You know how employers ask you for experience before they hire you?  Babies do not send you emails asking for letters of recommendation before they can agree to be your child. Being a first time mum means you have to rely on good books and hang out with experienced mothers to get good advice. Nevertheless, book instructions and good advice can only take you so far. You will be ahead of the game but trust your baby to decide to teach you something new you did not come across in the books. First time motherhood is a learning on the job kind of thing.

2.       Bring something.
On receiving the news, I was of course eager, but I did not make it to the hospital until the next day.  My mother gave me a call early the following morning and said, nununa Lucozade umpelekee, she needs to take enough fluids. I got to the Supermarket and my mind decided to change its own mind so that yours truly came out of there with a clothing item instead of what she had been clearly instructed. Either way, point is, when visiting a new mother, it is always advised to show up with something. Not just as a sign of good manners but as a way to welcome her new bundle of joy.

3.       Help with the chores.

After she was discharged, we took turns with my other cousins to stay with her at her place. We did dishes, cooked, did laundry, cleaned the house and in the evening left when dinner was ready. Most times, people tend to visit new mothers and then sit there waiting to be attended to also. A new mother is a tired mother. Her baby has most likely kept her up all night. She is still healing from the process of delivery and her body needs enough rest. Therefore, visiting to be ‘looked after’ is not a good idea. Instead, take pending chores from her hands and have her take a nap. She will appreciate that more.

This experience is definitely one of my favorites. Holding a newborn gives you this feeling of needing to protect and safely harness them from the harshness of the world. The way they look at you with wonder in their eyes and are mesmerized with the most ordinary of things makes you melt. It makes me thankful that God gifted her a baby in her marriage. 

I can now only pray that he is brought up according to His ways:)


1 comment:

  1. As always, lovely written. Oh, the joy a newborn brings. Sigh


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