Imagine a phone or laptop whose battery is about to die. But even when its down to 5%, it lasts surprisingly long?
That’s exactly how I feel about myself!
For the last three months or so, I’ve been sleeping in snatches. Two hours here, a half hour there, barely ever totaling up to more than four or five hours in a day. A newborn baby after all, has no concept of day and night. I would have imagined that by this time I’d be quite knocked up. But hey, here’s a startling discovery. Motherhood makes the last of your battery last longer than expected! So here I am, still functioning on what is an under-slept, over-worked body.
I’ve stayed up from 1am to 4am in the night, willing my baby to sleep, while he’s all ready to play. My exasperation does give way to amusement at times, when I see him all wide-eyed, at the oddest hour in the middle of the night, looking at me jauntily as if saying, “Hey, what’s up? So what are we going to do now?”
Later, as he catches up on his naps during the day, I find myself trying to get some basics out of the way- bathing, eating, managing the kitchen, taking care of the baby’s clothes and toys. And just when I finally find the time to lie down for an hour, guess what? My baby decides he wants to wake up to poop. Or play. Or eat! And that’s when my hidden reserves of energy kick in. I am vaguely reminded of an old Duracell advertisement with a super-charged pink bunny who keeps going.
One’s responsibility with a baby doesn’t just end with his basic needs. So when he’d fed, bathed and changed, I dig some more into my “Mommy-powered” batteries to educate him. I sing some rhymes, talk to him, show him a picture book, walk around the house describing what I see. I also massage him, get him to exercise and take him out for some fresh air. I cuddle him, reassure him, let him know he’s loved and treasured.
And then I remind myself that in a few months, I’m going to need yet more battery-power. For that is when the little one will learn to crawl, put things in his mouth, ask questions and subsequently dash around the house. Truly, motherhood is a 24×7 responsibility. There are no leaves, no breaks, no breathers. You can’t take a sabbatical or resign.
And yet, mothers across the world survive. As long as their child needs them, they keep going, no matter what. Because, the day you give birth to a tiny being, the Lord gives you a special battery.
One that doesn’t die.
One that goes on and on and on…
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Piyushi Dhir is the author of 'In Search of Love', 'I'm Yours, The Next Time', 'Silent Promises' and 'Enmeshed Evermore'. She is a contributor in 'Nineteen Tales of COVID-19', a collection of short stories. A voracious reader, a keen traveler, a businesswoman and a mom, Piyushi currently resides in Canada. A nomad at heart, she loves to discover new places and capture the hues of life with her pen.