We all know that motherhood is not that simple. Depends la pada apa yang kita expect, apa yang kita planned for our children. I had come across my first challenge as a mother. Breastfeeding.
As a first time mother, I planned to give my baby only the best, thus, breastmilk. Susu ibu kan yang terbaik, mengandungi antibodi untuk bayi dan segala kebaikan yang tidak terdapat dalam formula. So during pregnancy, I read about breastfeeding, bought the electric pump Medela Swing, and mentally prepared myself for any challenge to come. Was I succesful? No.
Semua plan jadi huru hara bila sampai hari ketiga pun aku masih tak menghasilkan susu. Ayesha Amani won't suck because my nipples were inverted on both sides. She cried out of hunger the first night we were together, alone, in the hospital. I cried the moment my baby screamed hungrily, expecting mummy to provide her milk. From that moment, it felt like I had failed motherhood. I cried and cried non stop. I cried with her, my heart crushed dan harapan aku nak fully breastfeed baby hancur berderai pada malam tu. Nurse kat hospital dengar baby menjerit, datang ambik and I bet they fed her with formula because she came back all quiet and satisfied. But mummy? Mummy failed at her first task : to feed the baby.
Though I didn't stop trying. I tried and I tried. Every single attempt ended with Ayesha Amani crying even louder and harder. So that day masa aku on the way back to Kuala Lipis for confinement, aku suruh hubby berhenti kat 99 Speedmart dan belikan formula. "I had to", I thought. Takkan nak biar anak kebuluran?
So bila dah ada formula, which was my first biggest mistake in breastfeeding, sampai je rumah mak, anak pun nangis kelaparan. Problem dengan inverted nipple and no milk supply was made known to my parents. Baby continued to cry, and I continued to force my baby to suck on my non-existence nipple. Mak got impatient so she made 1oz formula milk in a bottle, grabbed my baby and fed her. And I thought, that's it, my baby will never be breastfed again. And I wasn't wrong.
The episode of dramatic crying on my husband's shoulders started that night. I never stopped crying at night from then onwards. It was such depressing moment, knowing you had failed your baby. When you can offer her goodness, she was given cow's milk instead. I had had a hard time from then on trying to get my baby to breastfeed.
Yes, Ayesha Amani obviously preferred the artificial nipple! Any babies at that stage would when they were introduced to bottles far too soon! I kept on bringing the idea to my mum but she will never understand. I said Ayesha Amani will be nipple- confused! She will compare mine to the artificial, and trust me she will not like to be breastfed when she learned that the bottle was easier to suck on, with less effort, and she's full almost immediately. Masalahnya bercakap dengan seorang ibu yang dah pun membesarkan 6 orang anak, you will never win. So I let her be, and kept my feelings inside and continue crying behind her back. Mak tak supportive of the idea of breastfeeding, not for any bad reason, cuma dia risau cucu nya kelaparan bila mummy pergi kerja nanti. Dia risau yang whoever takes care if Ayesha Amani later, may not handle the breastmilk properly and little princess will drink contaminated milk. So if my reason for breastfeeding is love, hers for not is just the same!
Today is Ayesha Amani's 15th day in the world. I have progressed well with breastfeeding, though most of the time I had to still give her bottle. Ayesha Amani preferred the right breast, but today I managed to get her to latch on my right. My inverted nipple is still not much better, but my milk supply is improving well! All I can do now is try harder and harder. It requires a lot of patience, which is what I am working on at the moment. Pray that I try harder, and that I don't stop here. I must continue no matter how long it will take me. Things will be much better when I am back at my own house, I said to myself. For now, keep my mother happy, and console myself by not giving up! Never ever give up!