Motherhood is a new chapter in any woman’s life.
Every phase and stage comes with its good bad and ugly, and the only possible way to embrace the changes is to accept them. Motherhood is an unparalleled life experience - one which you can never be fully prepared for and one which makes you learn every day – about yourself, about your baby, about people around you (including your husband, family, friends and everyone else) and about the world.
As a 10 year old mother, I look back fondly at the years gone by. Every year has its memories, milestones and moments that are unique, special and precious. And yet, I feel that the first year as a mother has that something extra. ).
I don’t know what the future will unfold in my journey as a mother. But here’s what I do know – The first year of motherhood is a truly a mixed bag – of celebrations, of joys, of sorrows, of sacrifices, of compromises, of laughs, of tears, of challenges, of changes, of everyday trials, of mental strength, of self-will, of determination, and of multiple assessments on the pinnacles of your energy, patience, love, priorities, values and selflessness.
And while every mother has her own set of moments which she will cherish for a lifetime, I have articulated my most wonderful moments in the first year of motherhood.
After a 9 month bond with your baby who had an imaginary face and with whom you shared a variety of your thoughts, emotions, experiences, expressions and the long ordeal of labor – You finally see your baby for the very first time – All pink, live and kicking! What a moment!! For many mothers, the moment in itself can be overwhelming. Simply because at that one moment, you realize that while you comprehend the physics, chemistry and biology of making a baby, you will never fully appreciate the divine element in human creation.
The first cry of your baby is one of the sweetest music to any mother’s ears. It’s just the start of the many cries which will continue to be a constant music in your everyday life. But then, the first cry – however it is – is a moment to cherish for any mother.
The first REAL hearty laugh from your baby transports you to a different world. Simply because the laugh is pure, honest, heart-felt and is from your baby and for you, at you and with you! What a moment of pure unadulterated joy to just get your baby to laugh and laugh along with your baby! And then every time your baby laughs is a magical moment – one which just makes you fully present in the moment, in the NOW!!!
The first time your baby actually recognizes you is a wonderful feeling. Your baby reacts, responds and expresses in his / her own way. And no matter how many other recognitions you get in the journey of life, nothing beats this one!
Nothing compares to the first kiss from you baby. It could be just a lick or a smack or just oodles of drool on your face. But there is something magical about a baby’s kiss – It just makes you keep longing for more of these baby kisses.
This can be in joy, worry, pain, hurt, wonder, pride or just a whirlwind of emotions. But the first time you cry for your baby is a memorable moment simply because it marks the beginning of many more tears in the journey of your life as a mother.
Among all the other titles, names and identities that you amass in your personal and professional life, the first time your baby says Mama / Amma / Ma touches your heart, your soul. And no matter who chooses to address you in whatever fashion they believe appropriate, a sweet Mom / Mama / Amma / Ma from your baby for the first time is a wonderful moment! One which most mothers remember with amazing detail for a lifetime!
The first time your baby gets mobile – either by crawling or walking is a touching moment. It’s just fascinating to watch your baby move around actively and also to watch your baby’s every attempt to get close to you! While again it marks the beginning of many changes that you need to make in your house, in your activities and in your life – It is definitely a milestone in the first year of motherhood!
Every woman has different culinary skills and every baby has his / her own preference for food and taste. And while it takes time for the mother and baby to figure out different food palates and reach a state of understanding and equilibrium, there is nothing more satisfying than a self-cooked meal which your baby enjoys and gulps down with complete relish. This certificate from your baby in appreciation of your efforts and culinary skills equates to you being a Michelin Star Chef.
There are moments in the first year of motherhood when you realize that your sheer physical presence makes your baby happy. Just You! In whatever way, form, size, attire and shape that you are in! And with no expectations, no judgment, no demands in return. Of course, this will change with time… But in the first year, it is just the mother’s sheer physical presence which makes all the difference.. And in those moments, every mother experiences an amazing feeling.
Every mother has her own assessment of what she believes is a key baby achievement. To some it may be the first time your baby eats independently, the first time your baby dances, the first time your baby kicks a ball, the first time your baby climbs up / down the bed freely, etc. etc.
And the first time you witness your baby’s achievement, is a moment of pride, joy, wonder and amazement – One which any mother will cherish for a lifetime. In my case, my baby achieved something worthwhile almost every day (Of course! I may be biased here.. but then! I am her mother).
Somewhere along the way, every mother understands and experiences TRUE LOVE. While we all love our parents, friends, spouses, siblings, family, etc etc. – There is something exquisite about the love any mother feels for her baby.. it is unconditional, boundary less and selfless
And if you are a mother, you will probably agree with me..
And if you have experienced this love, you are lucky…
And if you want to experience it, it is definitely worth it…
This article is dedicated to my mother and daughters.
Nischala is the Global Marketing Head at Wipro. She is a new age marketer who enjoys work which has a jazz and bass of logic, creativity and making a global impact. She is also an advisor / mentor with several global initiatives involving startups, technology consortia and #WomenAtWork communities. Her expertise is to craft and design high impact marketing strategies for emerging and high growth technology areas like blockchain, AI, next generation solutions. She believes the equation to marketing success is moving the dot from mind-share to market-share to profit-share. Her claim to fame is being among India's 2017 Top 100 Brand & Content Custodians, a TEDx talk, being among Twitterati and featuring in several global "Best in blogging" lists. Nischala holds an MBA from IIM Bangalore. You can follow her on Twitter @nimu9