Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Dilemmas of a Working Mama

It has been 2 months now since I returned to work after the 2 months confinement period. Time sweeps by me really fast, and before I knew it, Aydein just turned 4 months young.

During the last couple of weeks, I have encountered a few dilemmas that I think, are quite common for working mummies.

Breastfeeding and breastmilk

I have not been producing much milk lately. I do not know whether it's genetic or lack of stimulation, but I just don't produce as much milk as before. I do think it's the gene (although my gynae doesn't think so) because my mum, my aunties, my opah, all had the same problem. Poor Aydein, he gets restless when latching on me sometimes. I read that the only way to boost one's milk production is to have the baby latch on you for as much as possible because the less you breastfeed your baby, the less milk you make. But with me being away for 9 hours everyday, it's almost impossible. I understand that I need to pump for at least every 2 hours at work in order to encourage the milk production, but goodness, I just can't find the time with the heaps of work waiting to be done! In the end, I will have to settle with only one pump session everyday and the most I can get out of me is 4ozs, and if I'm lucky, 5ozs everyday. Well, better something than nothing, eh?

I have also tried so many traditional tips to begin with. The different types of leafy veges, the longan, the lobak putih, you name it. I now even drink gallons of water everyday to boost my milk supply, but to no avail. I have received the Milkmaid Tea ordered from even, as suggested by Kak Riena, but well, I am still waiting for the right time to try that product out for a reason I can't reveal here – not yet.

Quality Time

Ever since I returned to work, I can't help but to envy those stay-at-home mums who have ample of time to spend with their babies and getting to see them grow everyday. You see, my official working hours are from 9.30am – 6.30pm. But since I requested not to work on Saturday shifts, my working hours are from 9.30am – 7.30pm everyday. Therefore by the time I reach home, it will be around 8.00pm, and by the time I finished dinner, it will be around 8.30pm. I will spend the precious few hours with Aydein, and at 10pm (11pm at most), I will put him down to sleep. He will wake up a few times for feeds, go back to sleep, and will be wide awake at about 8.30am the next morning. I will then get myself prepared for work again, so exactly how many hours do I get to spend with my baby?

The Maid

The great thing about having a maid is that it makes your life a whole lot easier. However, when you are a working mum and your mum-duty is taken over by the maid most of the day and you only come back at night to resume your mum-duty, it doesn't seem very "great" anymore. I quote one example when I had a very bad migraine+gastric one night that I had to ask for the maid to change Aydein's diaper because I had to lie down and rest. I watched as she changed Aydein to a fresh new diaper while playing with him. And to my surprise, I heard my baby's first laugh! I could not explain my feelings, but I know it was a mixture of many different feelings – happy, surprised, excited,... jealous. – my baby's first laugh and it was not me who made him laugh! I understood from my maid that it was not actually the first time he laughed and my heart actually sank even lower. What else was I missing while I was away?

They won't be babies forever – this phrase keeps going in my head over and over, but I don't have much choice now, do I? It's every working mum's dilemma, and all working mums go through this so like it or not, I will have to face it. My employer has been kind and wonderful enough to me all this while, and I can't complain.

However this is my sacrifice for Aydein's well being in the future, so forgive me baby, mama has to do this for you to have a comfortable life in the future. Mama and papa both have big plans for you when you grow up, so mama needs you to know how much we love you and how we want nothing but the best for you. Aydein sweetheart, mama misses you already.


RieNa said...

kalaulah abg aleh tu jutawan, dan k riena ni pekerja swasta..
of course i'll be at home playing with my daughter..

masa dgn baby sgt terhad..kita terlepas byk moment..2 hari mengulit dia (sat & sun) x cukup utk melepas rindu..

Thara said...

itu lah kak riena. ure very right! tapi nak buat mcm mana kan. :(

ps : kalau aien jutawan, tiqah benti keje teros kot! haha.