am i a good mother?

I finally finished writing my short story for the book. I’ve done my part, so now I just need to wait until the book is in my hand. I’m so excited! Anyway, back to my blog.

Two days ago, baby C turned 14 months. She has grown so much! She started to have wants and would throw tantrums when she didn’t get what she wanted. But other than that, she is lovely and cute. Hugging her is still the best feeling in the world for me. But sometimes, I still have doubts or worries that I might not be doing good enough for her. 

Since the beginning of her birth, I didn’t have enough breast milk to feed her. The nurse at KKH taught me, though, how to produce more milk. I tried to do everything I could but it was still not enough. YF bought me a breast pump and encouraged me to pump whenever I could. I read some articles online how to produce more, I messaged my friend who appeared to have good amount of breast milk; she even have a fridge full of breast milk. To be honest, I just didn’t have the energy or will to pump. YF kept pressured me to actively pump, but I felt very stressed when doing it. I breastfed baby C for about three months before completely switched to formula. There were feelings of guilt and incompetence that overwhelmed me, I felt like a failure.

Along the way, I was learning on the job. After my mom went back to Indonesia, I was doing my very best to be a good mother. I read articles about babies, shared with my friends some tips and tricks, tried to come out with my own solutions. Sometimes they worked, sometimes they didn’t. When they didn’t, I would feel very frustrated and stressful. I started to compare myself with my friends, other moms, and it often seemed like I didn’t do good enough. For example, baby C often has problems with passing motion. I asked my friends what to do and tried what they suggested to ease up the process but most of the time, they didn’t work out. Recently, after baby C turned one, my mom and MIL started to tell us that she should be potty-trained. I tried to reason with my mom by telling her that I will potty train her when she turns 18 months, or at least when she already has understandings of things. We had some disagreements which ended with her saying that I am a lazy mother.

All these things about parenting sometimes make me feeling down. I feel pressured. I always thought that everything will happen naturally when she gets bigger and older. I mean, of course we need to guide her on certain things but slowly but sure she will get to it. A month ago, YF’s classmate came to visit us with his three kids. His wife and I talked a bit about raising kids and stuff. I realised that she is an easygoing parent, not that she doesn’t care about her kids but she just kinda let it go. Whatever happens, happens. Really not that kiasu type of parent. Yesterday, I met a mother with her two kids at the park. We introduced ourselves and exchanged numbers. She, too, looks like a relaxed and easygoing parent. It makes me feel like, “Hey, you are not alone in this!”

I guess my problem is I spend way too much time on social media looking at those parents who seem to be able to get it together. But I often forget that what you see, especially on social media, is not what it really looks like in real life. Of course, there are parents who really thrive and seem to get it altogether, but every parent has their own strength and weakness. I seem to have many weaknesses, hahaha but if baby C grows up well, happy and healthy, I guess it’s safe to say I have done this motherhood well enough.


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