Monday 10 January 2011

Mommy talks with Martha (part 2)

Martha (mother of two boys: A is 5 and W is 3) was so generous when she answered my questions that a part 2 was necessary (part 1)!

Note: After reading about Martha's
post partum depression, I realized that I don't know much about the subject. If some of you had PPD, I would like to know about your experience. From what I understand, PPD is a very delicate subject...a taboo for some people. If you don't want to comment directly on my blog, you can always send me a private email. Thank you!

What are your tips on breastfeeding?
Don’t give up! I found out two weeks after I gave birth to A that he wasn’t latching on properly. But once I got that straightened out, everything went smoothly. W latched on immediately after birth and had no problems.

Also, if they try to push a bottle at the hospital tell them no, you want to nurse. If the baby is hungry both of you will figure out how to properly breast feed. I don’t know anyone that says I wish I hadn’t breastfed my baby, only people regretting not nursing.

What are your tips on the first few weeks after birth?
Those weeks are hard. Remember to take a little time for yourself – sit down with a cup of tea, take a shower, wear "real" clothes and brush your hair. You would be surprised how much better you feel when you’ve taken care of yourself too.

With A, I had undiagnosed post partum depression. It was very, very difficult for me, and I wasn’t honest with myself during that period. Truly try to evaluate how you are feeling, and ask for help. It wasn’t so much that I felt sad but that I felt extremely overwhelmed, anxious, and scared. I didn’t realize that these are key signs of PPD, so I did nothing about it. Your spouse is there to help, love, and nurture. And he will, especially if you talk to him about how you’re feeling.

What are your tips on baby learning / education?
Babies learn naturally. I don’t feel there is a need to over-stimulate with activities. Bonding with your baby is most important in the early stages. Don’t worry about when things are happening. Both my boys learned things at different rates, and developed at different times.

The Rudolf Steiner/Waldorf philosophy really influenced our early childhood experiences and I highly recommend You Are Your Child’s First Teacher by Rahima Baldwin-Dancy. It is really helpful in having a soothing start to your child’s life, and what learning experiences work well with children and babies.

Thank you again Martha.


Anonymous said...

thank you for sharing ladies!
i love these open/ honest posts from women i respect.
martha is so lovely and i wish we lived in the same town so i could teach the boys and knit with her... and, of course, you'd have to live there too claudia!

Hoola Tallulah said...

I had PND after Boo was born, and I am suffering from it now. I have writing about it a little on my blog. It is a very strange illness, unlike anything I have experienced before. It is a shame it is so taboo, because women suffering from this need so much support.
I would be more than happy to answer any questions. My main advice would be to swot up a little on the symptoms and be vigilant, make sure your partner knows the symptoms too. Rest much, eat well, and don't put too much pressure on yourself XxX

Lola said...

I'm loving your blog. Glad I found it. I thought I had read up on PPD and knew what to expect. At four months postpartum everything fell apart all of the sudden and it took me two and a half weeks and 20 lost lbs before I went in for help. Turns out though, I had Postpartum Thyroiditis which is just as nasty. I recovered and was proactive with my second and third and everything has been lovely. Get as much sleep as you can and eat well. And ask for help.

lizzie said...

I m a mother of five and a grandmother of ten. I was quite depressed after some of my births but it was always tied to lack of sleep etc. they did nt call it PPD
back then. I think everyone cries after having a baby - it is all so emotional.
Someone told me when I was first a mother that babies thrive in a quiet environment and I do think that it does nt matter how quiet a baby s life is.
It is wonderful to read your blog and see the love and care and attention you are giving to your baby.
My husband was very helpful - looking after the children and making me cups of tea etc.