The Mama Podcast

04. Real Moms Series: Maria Manasawala, My Pandemic birth and Post-partum

August 10, 2020 Sumayya Sarwar
The Mama Podcast
04. Real Moms Series: Maria Manasawala, My Pandemic birth and Post-partum
Show Notes Transcript

Real moms series! Grab a cuppa and be part of the conversation, listen in to a chat between 2 moms, just having a 'natter' (as we like to call it in the UK).

It is incredibly empowering to hear from other moms, knowing we are not alone through this journey of motherhood and that we all go through similar obstacles. Hearing from them, learning from their experiences and having a laugh at the daily mishaps of parenting is what this mini series is all about.

In this episode I am joined by Maria Manasawala, she gave birth during the pandemic. Since giving birth she has moved in with her parents for a short time to help her with the adjustment to motherhood and get that much needed hands on support. She shares her journey of giving birth and needing an emergency c-section. How she prepared for labour and her very honest account of how she dealt with it emotionally along with what her biggest challenges and learnings have been since her little boy arrived.

Find Maria on Instagram @calorie_collector

If you'd like to share your story, get in contact!
We love hearing from you, contact us, email: hello@mymamaapp.com or Instagram @mymamaapp

Download the Mama ME app on Apple or Android, Find the links on the website
www.mymamaapp.com




Intro music: www.bensound.com


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hi mama you're listening to the mama

podcast it's Sumayya here the co-founder


0:00:04.799,0:00:09.200

of mama ME app

mama me is the first app to exclusively


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connect mothers

across the middle east, connect with


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like-minded mamas and create lifelong

friendships


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at mama we are all about connecting

mamas to empower women


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so let's join together and make this

mission a reality


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i'm so excited to be able to bring you

the real moms


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series and this week i'm joined by maria

who will be sharing her mom's story and


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her labor

and what she's been up to during the


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pandemic and afterwards

as well raising a little bit thank you


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so much for

um taking your time today and joining me


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because um

i know you've got a really young baby


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and we'll get into that in a second

and i really really appreciate your time


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because i know

how difficult it is in those early days


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to make the time

yes hi thank you so much for having me


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on your show

uh it's an absolute pleasure and yes i


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do have a really young baby

he's just recently completed two months


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but i'm excited to have this chat with

you


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yeah i mean two months and just

coming out of i guess a pandemic so


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i met yeah i'm assuming your experience

is obviously different to what my


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experience was

and i'm really intrigued to find out how


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you felt during the sort of the pandemic

and being pregnant and then having to go


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through that labor process during the

whole pandemic yeah


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yeah well so obviously like um

you know we have plans and we have


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expectations of what our pregnancy is

going to be like and then


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uh having this kind of external

circumstance


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change things and shift things does uh

affect us and it's it's basically our


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expectations of what we want things to

be


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and then that that gets affected um you

know it's uh


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like i don't wanna cry and crip because

obviously i had it


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you know uh pretty good uh i didn't

suffer like um


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like how other people have suffered

emotionally and financially and mentally


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but it's just like all of us have

certain expectations and if those aren't


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met we do get mentally disturbed

like for me i knew for a fact that my


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brother was gonna fly down

uh when i gave birth my grandma my mom's


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mother was gonna fly down and be with us

and all of that couldn't happen in my


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last uh two months of pregnancy

i couldn't attend all my yoga classes i


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couldn't go for walks

you know because it was much more


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important to stay in and stay safe

but uh obviously my expectation of what


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my

last few months were going to be were


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impacted

and then uh the kind of the kind of


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regulations we had at the hospital like

who could visit who couldn't


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those things you know they changed

so it was mentally like really


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challenging as well as i guess

physically as well because you couldn't


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really

you couldn't go out at all did you do


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like different types of exercise

or did you sort of implement something


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that works better at home for you

or were you i did i did i did a lot of


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yoga at home i did a lot of meditation

um i kept listening to a lot of


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subliminals and i think meditation

really helped me you know


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come to terms with the fact that you

know this pandemic is external


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and i need to focus my energies on you

know all


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the things that i can control and start

thinking about the fact that okay this


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is exclusive time

with my baby even though like people


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can't visit me

uh i can't go out and you know uh


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do certain things but this is exclusive

time with my baby this is time for me to


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heal

this is family bonding time and you know


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obviously things will get better and

we'll be able to do


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what we wanted to do in a while so it

was just about like you know getting


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through

those those tough months i think it's a


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really good way of looking at it right

because if you


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look at the positives then it makes it

so much easier


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to deal with so did you you said that

you did a lot of subliminals did you do


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sort of um

hypnobirthing or um just meditation yeah


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i i did research hypno breathing i

didn't get a chance to


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uh quite dive deep into it because

i discovered it quite at the end and um


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like i didn't want to shift around what

uh my mental state was at that point


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and then try and learn something new but

i'd already uh read a couple of books


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i was uh i had a lot of apps that were

that kept giving me


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you know a decent amount of information

and stuff and i did attend an


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hypnobirthing class with

um shireen from white hippo and


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uh that gave me a little taste of you

know what hypnobirthing feels like and i


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felt like

i was on my own journey with meditation


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so i continued

with that and uh yeah so


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since hypnobirthing was quite i came to

know about it a little late so now i


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know more about it

hopefully with the second baby that's


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yeah i mean also meditation i guess

hypnobirthing is a form of meditation


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exactly exactly so it does i guess it's

just about using you know whatever tool


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works for you

if you can find something that works for


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you that keeps you on track

uh and positive and like i would uh


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definitely say like it's very important

for any


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first-time mom to educate and meditate

but obviously don't go looking for you


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know horror stories because that's not a

good idea


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but definitely like educate yourself

yeah and there's so many positive


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birth stories right like everyone talks

about all the negative


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stories but then exactly

exactly and i think i think uh movies


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and media really um impact us right

because


0:05:45.840,0:05:49.759

what we see is just moms crying and you

know it's not five hours of crying


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during labor pain

it's it's it's a process it's a journey


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you go through a lot before you reach

that


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you know uh those five minutes of

extreme pain so yeah i mean


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um if i were to talk about my birth

experience


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um so i had an induced labor

and um you know so i labored for a


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couple of hours

and then since things weren't


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progressing like the way my doctor

wanted to i had to go for going for an


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emergency

c-section and i am


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so grateful that all my meditation

helped me


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um you know stay positive throughout

like i know my parents came back to me


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saying like

we were so surprised that you uh


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kind of like just breathed through this

entire process and you didn't freaked


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out at all

and it was because like i kept telling


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myself like i need to do this for my

baby


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yeah and you know it's very easy that

when you're going through pain to forget


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the the reason you're doing it yeah so

if you stay focused on the fact that you


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know you're going to have your baby in

your arms soon


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and things are going to be better and

and everyone does it


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women's bodies are meant to do this if

you keep reminding yourself of those


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things i think it really helps you

mentally and emotionally


0:07:04.720,0:07:08.560

absolutely and i think it's surprising

because i mean i personally did do hypno


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birthing before i gave birth to my

daughter and


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um even though you didn't actively do

any hypnobirthing course a lot of the


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things that you're actually mentioning

and talking about are very


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literally the things that you learn

whilst you do your hypno birthing class


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and so to focus on like the positives to

really stay calm


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and there's a lot about the types of

hormones and things that are released


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when you're calm and relaxed so i'm sure

that had an impact on how much more


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relaxed you were and

and also i'm sure i mean i'm not an


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expert but

you know there's information to suggest


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that

your pain is less or you feel less pain


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when you're in that kind of mindset

which is


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really interesting if you think about if

you can


0:07:48.319,0:07:51.680

prepare yourself to a point where you

actually feel less pain then that's


0:07:51.680,0:07:55.919

amazing right

yeah yeah yeah i guess yeah i guess it's


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all about that the entire preparation

for


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birth is about like you know

anticipating pain and i realize


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so a funny thing that i'd like to share

maybe it's too much information for some


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of the audience but

um if you've been leaving for a couple


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of hours and then they decide to take

you in for a c-section


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um you know uh they they

uh give you medicines that brings your


0:08:18.479,0:08:24.560

contractions under control right

so i like you you can feel that and then


0:08:24.560,0:08:28.400

um

at that point i could feel less pain and


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i couldn't

uh like my brain couldn't process that i


0:08:31.360,0:08:34.240

was like how how i i kept asking my

doctor like how has my


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pain suddenly gone down and she told me

that


0:08:38.000,0:08:41.360

you felt more pain because you were

anticipating much more pain for the next


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couple of hours

and now because you know that you're


0:08:43.839,0:08:48.720

gonna go in for an operation

and you know this is gonna end soon your


0:08:48.720,0:08:52.240

body

has already like uh you know it's at a


0:08:52.240,0:08:55.360

different stage and you are feeling less

pain because you know that it's going to


0:08:55.360,0:09:00.399

stop soon wow that's interesting

yeah it really really yeah i mean i


0:09:00.399,0:09:02.640

could still feel my contractions i was

at the


0:09:02.640,0:09:06.320

i was at the tenth hour of my labor pain

and


0:09:06.320,0:09:09.360

like just because i knew i was going to

go in for a c-section


0:09:09.360,0:09:13.120

i was then so mentally relaxed i could

have a proper conversation with my


0:09:13.120,0:09:15.600

doctor and ask her like

how come i'm feeling less pain and she's


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like no your contractions are still

going up


0:09:17.519,0:09:21.040

it's just because you know that it's

going to end soon that


0:09:21.040,0:09:24.959

you're just you know in better control

of yourself that's incredible so they


0:09:24.959,0:09:28.320

didn't give you any pain relief

at this point it was just oh no i didn't


0:09:28.320,0:09:31.200

go for an epidural because i knew that

if i had to go for a c-section they had


0:09:31.200,0:09:34.320

to give me

an epidural is more general and for a


0:09:34.320,0:09:38.320

c-section they give you uh one of those

anesthesias in your lower back right


0:09:38.320,0:09:42.399

that only numbs you

uh your uh weight your waist down so


0:09:42.399,0:09:44.480

that you can actually experience and you

know


0:09:44.480,0:09:48.320

see your baby after the baby's born

that's incredible i mean


0:09:48.320,0:09:52.080

it's so interesting that like just

because of your mind shift because you


0:09:52.080,0:09:53.839

knew something different was going to

happen


0:09:53.839,0:10:00.320

i find that really amazing yeah

yeah and i was i i kind of uh i'm happy


0:10:00.320,0:10:02.640

and this was the first time i was going

under surgery


0:10:02.640,0:10:05.519

and i'm happy that my brain was able to

process the fact that okay i'm going to


0:10:05.519,0:10:07.440

be numb so i'm not going to feel

anything


0:10:07.440,0:10:10.079

and there are doctors here and they're

professionals here who are going to help


0:10:10.079,0:10:12.720

me through everything

so i'm just going to focus on enjoying


0:10:12.720,0:10:17.279

my birth and

you know it's incredible did you


0:10:17.279,0:10:21.920

anticipate a natural birth and then

you wanted a natural birth i'm assuming


0:10:21.920,0:10:25.680

yeah i did i did

so that's why like i had an induced


0:10:25.680,0:10:28.240

labor because i wanted to try and have

it naturally


0:10:28.240,0:10:32.079

uh because of other complications we

couldn't wait to for me to complete my


0:10:32.079,0:10:35.360

uh 40 week term but they had to

introduce me on my


0:10:35.360,0:10:40.320

uh at my 37th week and

so that's why i like i wanted to try and


0:10:40.320,0:10:43.920

have it naturally

but i was okay because even though


0:10:43.920,0:10:47.519

things didn't go as planned i felt very

good about and very positive about my


0:10:47.519,0:10:51.200

birth

every at every decision at every point i


0:10:51.200,0:10:54.480

felt like i had enough information i had

educated myself


0:10:54.480,0:10:58.399

i had mustered up the courage to ask my

doctor 15 questions


0:10:58.399,0:11:02.399

at every stage you know to make sure

that i know what's happening with me


0:11:02.399,0:11:06.720

i think that's really interesting

because it's having that courage to ask


0:11:06.720,0:11:09.519

your doctor

is because if that makes you feel more


0:11:09.519,0:11:12.480

confident and comfortable then you

should definitely do that right and i


0:11:12.480,0:11:14.320

know for some reason they don't want to

know


0:11:14.320,0:11:17.839

and and that's fine you know if they're

fine yeah they prefer not to know and


0:11:17.839,0:11:21.120

that that's okay but if you do prefer to

know if you're one of those people that


0:11:21.120,0:11:25.120

likes all the information then it's it's

nice to


0:11:25.120,0:11:30.079

be able to ask those questions yeah

yeah and i'd really encourage like so we


0:11:30.079,0:11:33.440

get overwhelmed because the doctors will

usually use


0:11:33.440,0:11:37.360

terms and you know um technical phrases

that we don't


0:11:37.360,0:11:40.880

understand as common people but i would

encourage


0:11:40.880,0:11:45.279

anyone to go back to your doctor and ask

them to explain what they mean


0:11:45.279,0:11:49.120

like it's okay if their first instinct

is to use that technical term


0:11:49.120,0:11:52.800

but you you should go back and ask them

you know what it really means and what


0:11:52.800,0:11:55.680

it's going

to uh you know what the implications of


0:11:55.680,0:11:58.800

that are going to be on your pregnancy

if you are interested in that


0:11:58.800,0:12:02.000

it's really interesting that you

actually say that because i


0:12:02.000,0:12:05.920

like so my previous career is um being a

dentist and


0:12:05.920,0:12:10.079

so i've been on the other end of like

having to explain something


0:12:10.079,0:12:13.600

slightly more medical and you know we're

even though


0:12:13.600,0:12:17.519

we're trained as like medical

professionals to say something


0:12:17.519,0:12:21.120

in layman's terms which is what a

general like the general public should


0:12:21.120,0:12:23.680

understand

sometimes because you're constantly


0:12:23.680,0:12:27.600

thinking in this medical

like mindset yeah that the other person


0:12:27.600,0:12:29.920

may not understand and it's actually

really


0:12:29.920,0:12:33.120

like being on that other end it's really

nice when someone actually says hold on


0:12:33.120,0:12:35.600

a minute

i don't i didn't understand that can you


0:12:35.600,0:12:39.120

explain that in terms that i'll

understand and because that makes it so


0:12:39.120,0:12:40.959

much

nicer being on the other end that


0:12:40.959,0:12:44.000

actually that person is really involved

they understand and they want to


0:12:44.000,0:12:47.839

understand and i know

like from any medical professional that


0:12:47.839,0:12:49.920

i know personally i know that they

wouldn't have


0:12:49.920,0:12:54.720

any problems explaining that and doing

that and i think sometimes


0:12:54.720,0:12:58.399

and i've been on both ends right and i

think sometimes being on the other end


0:12:58.399,0:13:01.680

you think that

you're going to offend the doctor or


0:13:01.680,0:13:05.360

that they have too much to do

but you know i think their main priority


0:13:05.360,0:13:09.040

is you as a patient right and they want

to look after you so it's important


0:13:09.040,0:13:12.160

i think you've brought up a really valid

point there that


0:13:12.160,0:13:16.160

it's great to ask those questions and if

you don't understand just ask


0:13:16.160,0:13:21.279

yeah yeah yeah so like i said like you

have to educate yourself like if it puts


0:13:21.279,0:13:25.600

you in more control

because i mean of course there are


0:13:25.600,0:13:29.120

people who would

rather have it you know just not have


0:13:29.120,0:13:32.560

all that information and go into it and

then see what happens and that's fine


0:13:32.560,0:13:35.600

but i'm the kind of person who needs to

have all the information


0:13:35.600,0:13:39.839

from every tool that was going to be

used on me and i kept asking my doctor


0:13:39.839,0:13:44.160

if you know

i'd be i'd have access to air and gas


0:13:44.160,0:13:48.160

if there'd be a yoga ball there if i'd

be able to move around in the hospital


0:13:48.160,0:13:52.720

and all of that was a yes yes yes and

then because of the pandemic of course


0:13:52.720,0:13:55.760

uh the movement was a little restricted

uh


0:13:55.760,0:14:02.000

the way people the way the staff behaved

uh you know during um the birth process


0:14:02.000,0:14:06.000

was it was a little different so all of

that gets you know got affected but


0:14:06.000,0:14:09.839

but it was okay as long as all the major

things on my list were


0:14:09.839,0:14:13.440

ticked off i was okay with you know the

other tiny bits


0:14:13.440,0:14:17.199

moving around all the time out of

curiosity did you have to wear


0:14:17.199,0:14:21.360

a mask during your while you were

actually naturally laboring


0:14:21.360,0:14:26.320

um so uh there is

there are a couple of tests that they


0:14:26.320,0:14:30.160

keep doing uh

to check if to check for baby movement


0:14:30.160,0:14:34.240

and heart rate and stuff like that

during those tests i had to continue


0:14:34.240,0:14:39.760

wearing my mask

but then once um i was actively laboring


0:14:39.760,0:14:43.360

i think i took it off and i don't think

any nurse had the


0:14:43.360,0:14:48.639

uh you know like uh thing to come up to

me and say like you have to keep it on i


0:14:48.639,0:14:51.279

at that point i think they understood

that i was in so much pain i couldn't


0:14:51.279,0:14:53.839

keep it on

any longer and anyway it was a very


0:14:53.839,0:14:56.800

controlled environment because only one

person was allowed in the labor room


0:14:56.800,0:14:59.600

with me and that person was a family

member right


0:14:59.600,0:15:02.639

so and the family member kept their mask

on


0:15:02.639,0:15:06.720

okay and i would love to see you i mean

i guess that's that makes sense right


0:15:06.720,0:15:10.160

i was just curious to see what the

implementation and obviously that


0:15:10.160,0:15:14.399

may have changed again since you gave

birth how old is your son


0:15:14.399,0:15:18.000

just over two months you said two months

and one week yeah


0:15:18.000,0:15:21.360

oh wow so he's really young and so

you're


0:15:21.360,0:15:26.959

at your mom's house right now and i mean

i find this like really amazing that


0:15:26.959,0:15:30.639

you've got this um

incredible support network around you


0:15:30.639,0:15:33.839

which in those early days can be quite

challenging when you come home with a


0:15:33.839,0:15:37.040

new baby

and obviously your mom's done it before


0:15:37.040,0:15:40.800

so that's amazing because you've got

some support there and it's just nice to


0:15:40.800,0:15:44.160

be able to have a nap in the day right

and have someone look after the child


0:15:44.160,0:15:48.800

for sure for sure

my first two weeks i think all i did was


0:15:48.800,0:15:52.320

feed my baby and then everything else

was taken care of by my mom


0:15:52.320,0:15:56.480

like diapering changing um you know

bathing the baby


0:15:56.480,0:15:59.839

soothing the baby everything i don't

know what happened during those first


0:15:59.839,0:16:03.519

few weeks

because i was just so zonked out and


0:16:03.519,0:16:06.800

super tired i just wanted to take the

time to heal


0:16:06.800,0:16:09.920

i did still meditate during those days

right


0:16:09.920,0:16:14.399

and um but yeah i was just healing from

my c-section and stuff so it was really


0:16:14.399,0:16:17.920

good to have my mom around

um and i think it's the cultural thing


0:16:17.920,0:16:23.199

uh so i'm indian

and uh for us uh it's usually the norm


0:16:23.199,0:16:25.839

that

once you give birth you stay for the


0:16:25.839,0:16:28.560

first couple of months usually it's 40

days but it's


0:16:28.560,0:16:31.920

actually kind of up to you how long you

want to stay with your parents


0:16:31.920,0:16:35.759

so we move back to our mom's house give

birth there


0:16:35.759,0:16:38.959

stay there for a couple of uh you know

months


0:16:38.959,0:16:42.480

just so that you know you get used to

living with a baby


0:16:42.480,0:16:46.560

and it's really great to have your mom

mom your parents whoever you can


0:16:46.560,0:16:49.759

you know just a helping hand around who

knows someone who knows that you know


0:16:49.759,0:16:52.560

you need

a break in the day from taking care of


0:16:52.560,0:16:56.320

the baby yeah i mean i would have killed

for that in those early days honestly


0:16:56.320,0:16:58.800

like

it really i mean i'm sure it makes such


0:16:58.800,0:17:02.560

a big difference when

um you can actually rest because babies


0:17:02.560,0:17:06.240

wake up so often to feed in those early

sort of few months


0:17:06.240,0:17:09.280

exactly exactly and to be honest my baby

was i mean


0:17:09.280,0:17:13.120

i'm not saying my baby was so tiny but

like babies initially are so tiny you


0:17:13.120,0:17:16.559

don't know how to

handle them it's just for first-time


0:17:16.559,0:17:21.039

moms it's very overwhelming

and um so are you still at your mom's


0:17:21.039,0:17:25.679

house right now

i am and are you allowed are you sort of


0:17:25.679,0:17:29.200

having visitors

or not yet how do you feel like do you


0:17:29.200,0:17:34.799

feel comfortable with visitors right now

not yet neither me nor my husband are


0:17:34.799,0:17:39.039

comfortable with having visitors over

and i understand that you know things


0:17:39.039,0:17:44.000

have opened up

um a little bit now and the restrictions


0:17:44.000,0:17:48.559

are

a little more um accommodating


0:17:48.559,0:17:52.320

but uh obviously the virus is still out

there


0:17:52.320,0:17:55.600

and you know people some people are

still getting affected


0:17:55.600,0:17:59.760

even though the numbers have gone down

but still very much there so


0:17:59.760,0:18:02.960

and it's it's just too difficult to you

know


0:18:02.960,0:18:07.760

uh keep track and trace who has touched

what and where the person has been and


0:18:07.760,0:18:10.480

obviously people are starting to go back

to work now


0:18:10.480,0:18:15.679

so you know there's there's no way you

can track who's come in contact with who


0:18:15.679,0:18:20.720

so i think it's just safer uh

you know uh stretch it out for another


0:18:20.720,0:18:24.240

month or two and then see how thing

where things are yeah and that's totally


0:18:24.240,0:18:26.320

understandable right everyone has their

own


0:18:26.320,0:18:31.760

um limitations and their own sort of

views and beliefs on these things and


0:18:31.760,0:18:36.480

it's whatever works for you

um yeah so what has really i mean how


0:18:36.480,0:18:40.160

are you feeling right now in terms of

you're probably still healing with your


0:18:40.160,0:18:44.320

poor you're dealing you're having to

obviously you're looking after a


0:18:44.320,0:18:47.440

two-month-year-old you've got this

support network which is great but how


0:18:47.440,0:18:51.360

are you sort of feeling

as a like as a mom as a person how are


0:18:51.360,0:18:53.919

you

i'm actually good like to be honest i


0:18:53.919,0:18:58.720

think there might

be uh glimpses of fear that i have


0:18:58.720,0:19:04.559

like uh in my dreams um

because obviously i did go under surgery


0:19:04.559,0:19:10.880

and uh you know that brings

certain um you know that puts you in a


0:19:10.880,0:19:15.280

different kind of mental state um and

yeah


0:19:15.280,0:19:20.080

it was a i don't want to say tragic but

it was it was an experience


0:19:20.080,0:19:26.400

so um but it it hasn't uh

you know handicapped me mentally or


0:19:26.400,0:19:31.679

emotionally because

like i said um if you can find tools


0:19:31.679,0:19:35.280

that help you stay positive

whether it's meditation whether it's


0:19:35.280,0:19:38.080

journaling whether it's

you know listening to subliminals


0:19:38.080,0:19:41.120

whether it's talking to a friend whether

it's playing with your parents


0:19:41.120,0:19:47.919

if you can find anything that keeps you

positive use it like


0:19:47.919,0:19:52.559

so you continued your meditation sort of

literally after you gave birth you


0:19:52.559,0:19:56.480

continued sort of focusing on the

meditation as a daily practice


0:19:56.480,0:20:00.400

yes i did i did it and then focusing on

things


0:20:00.400,0:20:04.720

sorry no no no go for it i was just

going to say it's


0:20:04.720,0:20:09.520

it's finding that thing that you really

enjoy and that you can have for yourself


0:20:09.520,0:20:11.840

i think is really important after you

give birth


0:20:11.840,0:20:17.440

for me it was exercise and so i made

time for exercise and that was my thing


0:20:17.440,0:20:21.600

30 minutes yeah that was your tool yeah

exactly


0:20:21.600,0:20:24.720

um and it's just finding that tool right

whatever that


0:20:24.720,0:20:27.840

what whatever that is for you and i

think sometimes


0:20:27.840,0:20:34.480

we we focus on what that truly is for

society as a whole and i think it


0:20:34.480,0:20:37.760

doesn't matter what it is it may be just

sort of sitting down and reading a book


0:20:37.760,0:20:41.679

for 20 minutes right it doesn't really

matter what that tool is it's just doing


0:20:41.679,0:20:47.120

something for yourself

yeah yeah for sure and i think uh


0:20:47.120,0:20:52.480

this lock the the lockdown that was

um after i had just given birth was kind


0:20:52.480,0:20:57.120

of a blessing in disguise

because not having visitors while it was


0:20:57.120,0:20:59.679

uh

something that my mom was really excited


0:20:59.679,0:21:03.120

you know about and she was really

looking forward to having uh you know


0:21:03.120,0:21:07.840

friends and relatives come home and

um you know meet the baby and bring


0:21:07.840,0:21:11.120

gifts and stuff like that

even though obviously even i would have


0:21:11.120,0:21:16.000

enjoyed that but i was quite okay

you know uh with not having visitors


0:21:16.000,0:21:21.520

come home immediately

and crowd our minds and our home


0:21:21.520,0:21:24.640

with obviously i mean there's nothing

negative


0:21:24.640,0:21:28.880

if you like people coming home and

visiting your newborn child


0:21:28.880,0:21:33.039

but um you know like i said it was a

blessing in disguise because it was


0:21:33.039,0:21:37.120

exclusive

time for me to heal for me to bond and


0:21:37.120,0:21:39.360

you know

to just sleep it off like sometimes


0:21:39.360,0:21:42.320

that's all you need like

because obviously your friends and


0:21:42.320,0:21:46.480

family will visit

once things get better but just use this


0:21:46.480,0:21:50.000

time

uh because you can't you can't change it


0:21:50.000,0:21:55.919

you might as well you know use it

uh positively yeah i agree i mean that's


0:21:55.919,0:21:59.520

it's true because you wouldn't have had

that time otherwise


0:21:59.520,0:22:03.200

you wouldn't have had that sort of

exclusive bonding time if there wasn't


0:22:03.200,0:22:09.600

an actual enforced lockdown

exactly as a matter of fact my husband


0:22:09.600,0:22:14.799

runs his own small business so for him

there's literally no day off he only has


0:22:14.799,0:22:19.440

fridays off

he's working on saturdays as well and uh


0:22:19.440,0:22:23.440

you know even if we go on a holiday or

something he's always still on his phone


0:22:23.440,0:22:27.280

there's no like shutting down from you

know your own business right


0:22:27.280,0:22:32.320

but because of this lockdown he was home

with me for the last month and a half of


0:22:32.320,0:22:36.000

my pregnancy and that was an incredible

experience because


0:22:36.000,0:22:39.919

there was there's literally nothing in

the world that could have caused that


0:22:39.919,0:22:45.520

except for the pandemic

you know and right after giving birth


0:22:45.520,0:22:51.360

my dad who's also a workaholic um

was at home spending so much time with


0:22:51.360,0:22:54.080

my baby

and even that wouldn't have happened you


0:22:54.080,0:22:58.000

know if it weren't for

this current situation so it was really


0:22:58.000,0:23:01.919

about you know looking at the positives

so you've had some real good sort of


0:23:01.919,0:23:06.960

bonding time and time together which is

so lovely right you look back in a


0:23:06.960,0:23:11.679

year's time and you'll think

wow i managed to get like like this


0:23:11.679,0:23:14.799

child got undivided attention for a good

sort of


0:23:14.799,0:23:18.480

two or three months exactly and that was

the case at the hospital


0:23:18.480,0:23:22.000

too because i don't know somehow i got

really lucky and that that


0:23:22.000,0:23:26.000

week that i gave birth there was no

other child born so my three days


0:23:26.000,0:23:29.679

at the hospital my baby was the only

baby in the nursery


0:23:29.679,0:23:34.159

i was the only uh you know mother who

was being given attention in the


0:23:34.159,0:23:37.440

maternity ward

so all the medical attention was also


0:23:37.440,0:23:40.799

there for us

that's amazing you've had like vip


0:23:40.799,0:23:44.000

treatment

and you're being happy your son has had


0:23:44.000,0:23:48.480

vip exactly exactly

yes i'm so glad you said that because


0:23:48.480,0:23:52.559

that's a matter of perspective right

to feel that this is vip treatment i'm


0:23:52.559,0:23:57.840

not secluded i wasn't alone

this was vip treatment um


0:23:57.840,0:24:01.840

so has anything really surprised you

about motherhood something that you


0:24:01.840,0:24:08.240

like didn't expect

um i know well it's it's something that


0:24:08.240,0:24:11.679

i did say to myself a couple of days

back and i do want to share it


0:24:11.679,0:24:14.960

um you know how people tell you when

you're about to give birth that


0:24:14.960,0:24:18.159

motherhood is a full-time job

i don't think it's a full-time job


0:24:18.159,0:24:20.720

because you can take a break from your

job too


0:24:20.720,0:24:24.320

at the end of the day you have a couple

of hours done you know


0:24:24.320,0:24:28.480

when you are just going to relax so

motherhood is not a full-time job


0:24:28.480,0:24:33.600

it's a lifestyle i mean it's true

actually it is a lifestyle


0:24:33.600,0:24:39.679

yeah i think yeah so

so i guess i mean i guess that like you


0:24:39.679,0:24:42.640

know even though you know that you can't

take breaks from it


0:24:42.640,0:24:46.720

but actually living those first couple

of months with your baby


0:24:46.720,0:24:51.679

and realizing what it means to you know

uh not be able to watch your favorite


0:24:51.679,0:24:55.600

netflix show

or enjoy your coffee without having to


0:24:55.600,0:24:58.000

keep a year

out for like whether the baby's crying


0:24:58.000,0:25:03.279

or not that really

that really uh you know um


0:25:03.279,0:25:08.000

that was my surprise i guess so

when you say it's a lifestyle do you


0:25:08.000,0:25:12.240

feel that it's your mind

like it's it's the way you look at it so


0:25:12.240,0:25:15.039

it's your mindset in how you're looking

at motherhood


0:25:15.039,0:25:19.520

rather than it being this oh it's a it's

a full-time job and i don't get any


0:25:19.520,0:25:24.559

breaks you're kind of thinking it of it

thinking of it as oh this is a lifestyle


0:25:24.559,0:25:28.799

this is just now

part of how i live my life and


0:25:28.799,0:25:32.159

you know sometimes i have to attend to

certain things which i may not have had


0:25:32.159,0:25:34.240

to do previously is that what you mean

by that


0:25:34.240,0:25:37.360

am i understanding yeah yeah i guess

because obviously in the first


0:25:37.360,0:25:40.960

uh the initial couple of months at least

for the first six months your baby needs


0:25:40.960,0:25:46.400

your undivided attention right

like even if you have help um


0:25:46.400,0:25:50.000

and even if you have help you're still

always going to be so worried in the


0:25:50.000,0:25:54.000

first

six months or so uh you know because


0:25:54.000,0:25:56.640

you're getting used to the baby the

baby's getting used to you the baby's


0:25:56.640,0:26:01.360

getting used to the world

so um and you want to do justice to that


0:26:01.360,0:26:04.159

journey

yeah so you might have to give up a


0:26:04.159,0:26:09.039

couple of things a couple of

uh you know luxuries or uh certain you


0:26:09.039,0:26:11.600

know leisure activities that you used to

enjoy


0:26:11.600,0:26:15.360

but it's just for a couple of months

right so that's that's what helps me get


0:26:15.360,0:26:18.480

through it

yeah and it's true i think it's finding


0:26:18.480,0:26:21.279

that

i don't like to use the word balance


0:26:21.279,0:26:24.720

because i think

you're right it's more of an integration


0:26:24.720,0:26:28.799

right having a child yeah

and then having work life and a social


0:26:28.799,0:26:32.880

life and a personal life

that all kind of has to be like it has


0:26:32.880,0:26:37.440

to be this dance that all goes together

and it just finds its way in


0:26:37.440,0:26:42.799

and i think we all strive for this work

life balance where we want to give our


0:26:42.799,0:26:45.679

children time and then give work time as

well but i


0:26:45.679,0:26:49.200

i really don't think that like i don't

think balance is the right term for it


0:26:49.200,0:26:53.200

it really is an integration

um yeah yeah and you know for some


0:26:53.200,0:26:57.120

people on some days it may be that you

give one thing more time than others and


0:26:57.120,0:26:59.360

i think as your child gets a little bit

older


0:26:59.360,0:27:04.799

those things become more of a manageable

yeah i'm not not just manageable but


0:27:04.799,0:27:08.240

something that you have to negotiate

as time goes on because as your child


0:27:08.240,0:27:12.159

grows it's

slightly different needs right as they


0:27:12.159,0:27:16.000

go out there's different needs that they

need and they require and i think


0:27:16.000,0:27:20.399

yeah especially in those early sort of

few months probably the first six months


0:27:20.399,0:27:24.080

um that undivided attention is really

really sort of


0:27:24.080,0:27:27.120

some like all children need it and i

think for as a mother


0:27:27.120,0:27:30.799

for me it was really important to also

provide that um


0:27:30.799,0:27:34.159

and and i guess it's different obviously

some people do have to go back to work


0:27:34.159,0:27:37.840

much earlier than others

and and it's finding what works for you


0:27:37.840,0:27:40.399

and what makes you happy and forgetting

actually that


0:27:40.399,0:27:43.600

this is what it should be and this is

what the norm should be right i think


0:27:43.600,0:27:46.960

it's really

finding what works for you as a person


0:27:46.960,0:27:51.120

yeah and i think it make

it that that becomes easier if you know


0:27:51.120,0:27:53.600

the decision to have a child with your

own


0:27:53.600,0:27:57.360

or like i mean obviously you with your

partner and so like


0:27:57.360,0:28:02.159

don't ever ever have a child out of just

societal pressure or peer pressure


0:28:02.159,0:28:05.360

because someone told you your biological

clock is ticking


0:28:05.360,0:28:11.039

or you know whatever reason have it when

you're completely mentally prepared to


0:28:11.039,0:28:13.840

dedicate you know

some time and like you said i love that


0:28:13.840,0:28:17.360

word uh integrate another human into

your life


0:28:17.360,0:28:20.480

because there's no other way you're

gonna be able to do it positively it's


0:28:20.480,0:28:24.399

funny because when we get married right

we integrate this other person into our


0:28:24.399,0:28:27.520

life we don't

try and balance that person into our


0:28:27.520,0:28:31.279

life right like it really becomes a

relationship and you kind of work


0:28:31.279,0:28:35.039

together to make time for each other and

then make time for your own individual


0:28:35.039,0:28:37.600

needs as well

but then when you have a child we


0:28:37.600,0:28:42.399

somehow feel like

there should be a balance yeah yeah i


0:28:42.399,0:28:46.240

know i know what you mean because again

living with your husband you can


0:28:46.240,0:28:50.320

communicate with your baby you can't

at least for the first year right so


0:28:50.320,0:28:53.520

it's all about giving that first year is

just about giving


0:28:53.520,0:28:57.440

right so i guess i guess that's where it

takes a little bit of a toll on some


0:28:57.440,0:29:00.320

people's mental health

i think it's yeah and if there's nothing


0:29:00.320,0:29:03.440

wrong with taking time for yourself if

that means getting someone to come and


0:29:03.440,0:29:05.760

look after your baby or having your

partner


0:29:05.760,0:29:09.760

um take care of the baby like solely

take care of the baby for two or three


0:29:09.760,0:29:11.840

hours

i don't know especially when you're


0:29:11.840,0:29:14.559

breastfeeding it's a little bit more

challenging because they need to be


0:29:14.559,0:29:17.919

fed more frequently and if they're like

my daughter was didn't


0:29:17.919,0:29:21.120

feed from a bottle like it was really

hard to get her to feed from a bottle


0:29:21.120,0:29:24.480

and breastfeed at the same time

so if that's a challenge then i totally


0:29:24.480,0:29:28.880

understand but you still get that

sort of two hours and really sort of


0:29:28.880,0:29:31.120

making that time for yourself every so

often


0:29:31.120,0:29:34.480

yeah even if it's not every day every

other day or once a week or twice a week


0:29:34.480,0:29:36.640

whatever

that works for your family i think


0:29:36.640,0:29:40.559

that's important because that really

gives you that mind space doesn't it


0:29:40.559,0:29:44.720

exactly it gives you a break and yeah

you should be okay to reach out


0:29:44.720,0:29:48.480

and ask for help whether it's your

husband or your mom or friend


0:29:48.480,0:29:52.240

like someone who uh you know just

someone who's been through something


0:29:52.240,0:29:56.080

uh similar who has given birth and you

know has a child will understand that


0:29:56.080,0:29:59.520

you need a break too and you know

just find someone who can come and help


0:29:59.520,0:30:03.520

you out or get paid help like

to be honest anything works at that


0:30:03.520,0:30:07.679

point in terms of like

your son is now just over two months old


0:30:07.679,0:30:11.360

um what are you

are you excited about anything um in


0:30:11.360,0:30:14.080

this coming year

are you looking forward to anything in


0:30:14.080,0:30:17.279

particular are you just sort of enjoying

what's happening and just sort of going


0:30:17.279,0:30:20.559

with the floor i'm

actually just going to enjoy every day


0:30:20.559,0:30:25.120

just take it one step at a time

obviously he has growth spurts and that


0:30:25.120,0:30:29.360

those are intense and it takes a toll on

me mentally and


0:30:29.360,0:30:33.039

physically but apart from that i don't

want to you know think about


0:30:33.039,0:30:39.919

too far in the future i don't want to um

you know have any expectations of what


0:30:39.919,0:30:45.120

life is going to be with him

uh just just enjoy it for now


0:30:45.120,0:30:49.279

i think that's yeah a really positive

way to look at it and


0:30:49.279,0:30:54.880

really enjoy those um yeah early years

i guess i mean people kept telling me


0:30:54.880,0:30:57.840

and i'm sure you'll hear the same and

you probably already have had the same


0:30:57.840,0:31:01.360

that

you know those first two three years go


0:31:01.360,0:31:04.080

by so

quickly and then when they're a bit


0:31:04.080,0:31:08.399

older you'll always want them to be

young again so really enjoy those days


0:31:08.399,0:31:12.399

yeah yeah

yeah and i guess uh you know like it's


0:31:12.399,0:31:16.080

very easy for parents to start

having expectations of their kids and


0:31:16.080,0:31:19.120

that's something that i'm going to try

and actively avoid


0:31:19.120,0:31:22.159

i'm going to have expectations of myself

as a mother


0:31:22.159,0:31:27.360

but hopefully you know very few

expectations of my baby


0:31:27.360,0:31:30.960

yeah for me it wasn't that i had

expectations of my daughter but i had


0:31:30.960,0:31:35.440

expectations of myself

and even realigning those expectations


0:31:35.440,0:31:41.360

were very important for me just because

setting really really high standards


0:31:41.360,0:31:46.000

sometimes can mean

that you're actually not happy


0:31:46.000,0:31:49.120

like not that you're unhappy but that

you're


0:31:49.120,0:31:52.720

constantly like worrying because you've

set the bar so high


0:31:52.720,0:31:56.880

yeah too high yeah yeah and so that was

really interesting for me to learn


0:31:56.880,0:32:01.039

personally

yeah to cut yourself some slack and be


0:32:01.039,0:32:04.640

be okay with not being the perfect mom

actually there's there's nothing called


0:32:04.640,0:32:09.200

the perfect mom i think

there can only be a loving mother we all


0:32:09.200,0:32:13.840

provide what we need to for our child

for sure for sure yeah and i've already


0:32:13.840,0:32:19.120

had a couple of those moments where

where i've uh you know um ended up


0:32:19.120,0:32:23.840

crying because

i felt like i was uh if i if i needed


0:32:23.840,0:32:28.240

to tell someone that i need to take a

break from my baby and i need some help


0:32:28.240,0:32:33.360

uh you know managing things to feel like

i'm loving my baby less


0:32:33.360,0:32:37.279

like that's what i felt recently that if

i if i've had to tell someone that i


0:32:37.279,0:32:40.559

need

you know 15 minutes of a female break


0:32:40.559,0:32:42.640

and if i need someone to help me with

something


0:32:42.640,0:32:46.559

it's not that i love my baby less it's

just that i need to recharge


0:32:46.559,0:32:49.840

and come back so that i can give my baby

my all right


0:32:49.840,0:32:52.880

that's such an important learning right

and i think


0:32:52.880,0:32:57.120

to a degree i'm sure every mother

probably goes through this because


0:32:57.120,0:33:01.360

we want to give give give to our child

and that's understandable


0:33:01.360,0:33:05.679

but it's okay to take time for yourself

and have some me time and recharge your


0:33:05.679,0:33:08.880

own batteries because

like you said like without recharging


0:33:08.880,0:33:14.000

your own batteries you can't give

yeah yeah and then and then if you're


0:33:14.000,0:33:18.480

not gonna give a hundred percent

you know uh it's gonna it's gonna


0:33:18.480,0:33:21.600

project

in some other negative way sure and mom


0:33:21.600,0:33:27.760

guilt is something that we all have to

deal with like mentally to process that


0:33:27.760,0:33:31.840

feeling of mom guilt um i'm just yeah

like i'm sure


0:33:31.840,0:33:35.760

i'm sure there's no solution but yeah

i'm i'm sure that every mother has


0:33:35.760,0:33:39.120

i i know for sure that every mother has

to deal with that the mom guilt


0:33:39.120,0:33:43.279

yeah and yeah you know often it's not

actual like we shouldn't really be


0:33:43.279,0:33:46.320

feeling guilty in those times at all

it's just that we need some space and


0:33:46.320,0:33:49.360

some time

yeah exactly like i said like i know


0:33:49.360,0:33:52.480

that this is wrong and i know that i

just need to recharge and come back to


0:33:52.480,0:33:56.399

my baby a hundred percent

but i still can't shake away that


0:33:56.399,0:33:59.120

feeling right but i guess it's really

healthy that


0:33:59.120,0:34:02.480

um you know moms are able to talk about

these things now


0:34:02.480,0:34:07.840

and our society in our community is

slowly becoming more open to you know


0:34:07.840,0:34:11.919

discussing postpartum health and mental

health issues and


0:34:11.919,0:34:15.679

you know uh things that moms might be

facing and it's not just about


0:34:15.679,0:34:19.760

um you know keeping up with that

motherly figure where you're all


0:34:19.760,0:34:25.760

giving and and you never need a break

and uh you know by default you know how


0:34:25.760,0:34:30.079

to deal with everything that

you know comes with motherhood do you


0:34:30.079,0:34:34.240

feel that in your society

in your sort of community that it's


0:34:34.240,0:34:37.679

becoming more of a conversation that's

happening because


0:34:37.679,0:34:40.800

being raised in the uk mental health

like


0:34:40.800,0:34:44.879

not saying that mental health was openly

talked about when i was younger but


0:34:44.879,0:34:48.079

over the last sort of four or five years

i would say that it's become a


0:34:48.079,0:34:53.599

conversation that's quite commonplace

in the uk yeah and i'm just wondering if


0:34:53.599,0:34:57.359

that's something that you've noticed in

your community and culture as well


0:34:57.359,0:35:00.720

i have i have for sure like i feel like

my generation


0:35:00.720,0:35:04.480

and you know my friends who i see uh

going through certain


0:35:04.480,0:35:08.880

uh similar circumstances as myself are

now more open to discussing


0:35:08.880,0:35:12.160

uh these situations whereas earlier it

would be about


0:35:12.160,0:35:16.640

you know keeping up face and like not

talking about these things and


0:35:16.640,0:35:23.440

uh obviously we come from a time where

uh postpartum depression was like


0:35:23.440,0:35:26.480

a myth like people didn't even believe

it was true


0:35:26.480,0:35:31.440

yes definitely i've seen a shift um you

know in my generation for sure


0:35:31.440,0:35:35.200

that's i mean that's such a promising

thing right because i think it's so


0:35:35.200,0:35:38.320

important that we do talk about this

mental health and


0:35:38.320,0:35:41.920

that postnatal depression is a real like

issue that some


0:35:41.920,0:35:45.040

moms do have to deal with and it's

totally understandable because of the


0:35:45.040,0:35:49.520

change in

hormones and changing um lifestyle


0:35:49.520,0:35:53.280

and you know it's okay to sort of talk

about it and


0:35:53.280,0:35:56.960

and ask for help if you need it right

there's so many professionals out there


0:35:56.960,0:36:01.119

that are actually actively helping moms

with dealing with this as well


0:36:01.119,0:36:06.800

yeah and just having um all this

knowledge available to us i guess uh if


0:36:06.800,0:36:12.800

i go back and talk to my

mom or my aunts or whoever you know um


0:36:12.800,0:36:19.839

uh my elders and they'll tell you stuff

like you know uh after their um


0:36:19.839,0:36:23.200

after their birth and during their early

motherhood journey


0:36:23.200,0:36:27.119

they experience certain things but they

just don't use the word depression


0:36:27.119,0:36:30.960

and they they'll they'll tell you like

their stories will tell you


0:36:30.960,0:36:36.480

that they suppress so many emotions and

uh you know that leaves that leaves a


0:36:36.480,0:36:40.640

void in you so if

if they had had someone to talk about it


0:36:40.640,0:36:42.720

as well

uh you know things would have been


0:36:42.720,0:36:47.280

different so i

uh i know for a fact that i've uh


0:36:47.280,0:36:49.920

actively

reached out to a couple of friends you


0:36:49.920,0:36:54.640

know who are either expecting or

are just new moms and you know um


0:36:54.640,0:36:58.960

uh spoken to them about my experience

uh you know so that they'd be a little


0:36:58.960,0:37:03.040

more comfortable talking about theirs

because it's very important to you know


0:37:03.040,0:37:07.119

share what you're feeling i think that's

important as well right the mother to


0:37:07.119,0:37:10.880

remember that you may not have actively

experienced postnatal depression but you


0:37:10.880,0:37:12.960

just

opening up that conversation with


0:37:12.960,0:37:17.359

somebody else and asking them

what they're doing may just be what they


0:37:17.359,0:37:21.280

need to just

get it off their chest yeah that's


0:37:21.280,0:37:27.200

that's really true um

i think we've talked about so many


0:37:27.200,0:37:30.800

different things and

you know we've had some we've talked


0:37:30.800,0:37:32.640

about the positives and obviously some

of


0:37:32.640,0:37:36.640

the laws that you can sometimes feel

with motherhood um


0:37:36.640,0:37:40.960

is there anything else you'd like to add

before we end the conversation


0:37:40.960,0:37:44.079

to anyone who's listening and if you're

expecting


0:37:44.079,0:37:47.440

my two tools were educate and meditate

and


0:37:47.440,0:37:51.520

like that's my pregnancy and early

motherhood mantra


0:37:51.520,0:37:55.280

it has a it has a ring to it as well

that's incredible i'm definitely


0:37:55.280,0:37:58.880

um going to share that mantra and i

think i'll take some of um


0:37:58.880,0:38:02.560

your wisdom with me as well because i

think it doesn't really matter where you


0:38:02.560,0:38:06.079

are in your stage of motherhood

um i know that's right yeah yeah as well


0:38:06.079,0:38:09.440

right now

yeah yeah and i got to learn so many


0:38:09.440,0:38:13.119

things about you i love the fact that we

talked about how we integrate a child


0:38:13.119,0:38:16.000

into our life

yeah i really really enjoyed it and i'd


0:38:16.000,0:38:19.440

like to thank you once again for making

the time today


0:38:19.440,0:38:23.359

thank you for listening to this week's

episode that was maria who is a


0:38:23.359,0:38:28.960

marketing professional and she runs

a blog called calorie collector go check


0:38:28.960,0:38:32.720

her out it's all about food

culture and motherhood you can find all


0:38:32.720,0:38:36.000

her links below

in the show notes and don't forget to


0:38:36.000,0:38:47.839

leave us a review

and a rating i truly appreciate it


0:39:09.760,0:39:11.839

you