‘Incy Wincy spider went up the water spout’..I used to sing this as a bedtime rhyme to my new born son. It was almost magical to hold that tiny little life with sparkling eyes and tightly closed fists in my arms and put him to bed every few hours singing the same rhyme.”Is this his favourite rhyme? Did you sing it to him when he was in your womb?” Everyone coming over to meet my new baby would ask these questions. “I never sung it when he was in my womb, but may be he liked the tune now that I was humming it so often.” Was my standard reply. But over a period of time I realised that it was not him, but me, who was in love with this Incy Wincy. He was my buddy. He helped me calm down my inner most anxieties, the ones which I was shy of sharing with the world. He gave me hope and taught me patience.
I was just a few weeks into my maternity break and for some reason I was missing my office days. The non-stop action, chasing deadlines, gossiping over a hot cup of tea and endless planning for the weekends! It was all so much fun. Well there was lots of action now too with the new baby, but it was so much different, the pattern being sleep – feed – cry – diaper change – sleep! And thanks to my mom, I was following a super nutritious diet plan full of traditional foods, some of which I had not even tasted before. There was no question of weekend junk meals, wine and cheese or cocktails. Actually weekdays and weekends were almost the same. There was no sleep routine either “Sleep when the baby sleeps” was all that I was told.
Was I not enjoying motherhood? Oh yes I was, I adored my son, he was my heartbeat and it was fascinating to watch his expressions so closely, to feed him, to hold him. Every minute was worth living for! He had made me discover a new side of myself which I did not know existed. He had made me a more complete woman. I could suddenly even understand my own parents better. I could now feel their struggles. I could now understand why my parents made some choices for me which, as a child, I completely disagreed with. But now, looking back, they made complete sense. And it was my tiny little son who had taught me all these life lessons, without even speaking a word yet! Everybody I knew wanted a glimpse of the cute new innocent life – family, friends, relatives, many of whom hadn’t been in touch for quite a while. I felt more connected to everyone, more loved than ever before. And just like that, effortlessly, the little one had brought the family closer together giving precious moments for everyone to cherish.
What I was battling deep within me, over the months, was the transition from wanting to be a mother to an expectant mother to actually becoming one. From a dynamic fast paced corporate lifestyle to one which revolved around the little life which I had created. Whatever I wanted to do now, needed to tick so many check boxes. I was no longer the boss, the baby was. Activities had to be short and scheduled as per the sleep cycles of the baby, no junk food, no alcohol! It was all quite overwhelming!
But life was not easy for Incy Wincy as well, it was his resilience, patience and hard work that paid off in the end. He made me realise that what I was experiencing was just a phase and I could sail through it. I would soon be comfortable with my new responsibility of nurturing another human being along with pursuing my career and hobbies. All I needed was some support, some energy and hope and I got all of that and much more from the most unexpected places.. from “Out came the sun and dried up all the rain and Incy Wincy spider went up the spout again”. No wonder that I was singing this rhyme so often. It was not just a rhyme for me, but a mantra which kept me going.
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