I was 21 years old when I fell pregnant with Adam (believe it or not, he WAS planned!). Although I felt mentally and emotionally prepared in my final weeks, I also had a ton of unanswered questions making themselves comfortable in my hormone enraged brain. How do I know if my baby has colic? What if my baby doesn’t latch? How do I know that he’s getting enough breast milk? Am I even allowed to breastfeed in public?
Fast forward three and a half years. I fell pregnant with Alex and I felt the same wave of questions flushing in but this time it was different. This time I was armed with hardcore experience. Experience of the good days, the bad days and the what-the-(insert choice of profanity)-am-I-doing days.
I also had a few friends falling pregnant at around the same time who turned to me with their own hormonally charged questions. Enter the lightbulb moment that Mom 2 Boys was conceived – pun completely intended. I started filming a few videos to better communicate my opinions and pieces of advice as a resource that other new moms could use when they started their daunting journey towards their great motherhood adventure.
The ‘every pregnancy and child is different’ cliché is true! My pregnancy with Adam was the “What to Expect when you’re Expecting” book standard. With Alex I had spotting, contractions and even a 3 day hospital admittance at 30 weeks. I could write an encyclopedia on my pregnancies (perhaps my next feat?) but instead I wanted to give expecting and new moms practical tips that they can apply to whatever type of pregnancy and birth that they experience.
When I had Adam, I was at a stage where I would stress for any small detail that was not textbook true. I was adamant to not use a pacifier as it may alter his jaw line, I was not going to use baby powder as it forms crystals on their lungs and I was going to form a sleep schedule that would make a Military officer proud. Oh, that poor naive past me. How I wish future me could go back and close that Google tab. The constant pressure resulted in my milk drying up – yes, it DOES happen. Adam was loosing weight rapidly and had to be put onto formula by doctor’s orders.
When Alex came around, I was as cool as a cucumber about it and knew that whether breast milk or formula, as long as he was happy and healthy was all that mattered. Go figure, I was producing milk like a factory and although it took me two whole months to get used to the latching pain, I persisted one feed at a time. This left me with the question of breastfeeding in public. Although it was easy enough for me to whip it out at home feeling like a milk-on-tap cow, the U.A.E is known to be a conservative country. I did my research (admittedly practised in the mirror a few times to not allow a sneak peek of the goodies) and can now comfortably and confidently feed in public.
Either Adam didn’t suffer with colic or I don’t remember if Adam suffered with colic. The latter situation is more likely. Unfortunately, we weren’t so lucky with Alex.
One thing that I have learned, especially after having offspring number two, was that no matter how much advice, help, preparation, research and planning that you do before having a baby, it will N-E-V-E-R completely go according to script. Try not to over think it so much. Grab yourself a cup of non caffeinated tea (I lived off Rooibos as a biased South African), put your swollen feet up and get some sleep while you can because once your tiny miracle makes their grand appearance into this world, you will not have one night of deep, uninterrupted sleep for the next 2 to twenty years – or so.