“He never pressured me for cooking or cleaning. He was the one who encouraged me to let it go. I am the control freak. I need to have the house cleaned and the dishwasher and the laundry. He would tell me to let it go. He put it into my head that you need to let it go You need to focus on the baby and yourself. You and him are more important right now.”
Aditi is a Richmond resident. She has two wonderful children aged two and six. She writes about about the many beautiful challenges faced by motherhood. She has guest posted on a number of blogs and is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post and Richmond Moms Blog. She also volunteers as social media manager for Circle of Peace International which is a nonprofit helping children in Uganda get a better education. She has numerous passions but most enjoys event planning and choreographing dance dramas. Her passion is to help other parents find that perfect balance between culture, parenting and self.
Her exciting news:
Aditi begins by sharing with us her most recent and exciting news. I am now a regular contributor for the website Thrive Global which is baby of Arianna Huffington. I got the announcement directly from her. I will be writing about , how to become a better you, a better parent and ways to help you feel more in control. I’m very privileged and blessed to be able to get my work out there.
I was born and brought up in Kuwait. I’m an Indian by birth. I did my engineering in India because Kuwait doesn’t have a graduate studies for. Ex-pats. After getting married, I moved to the USA so I have had a pretty global background. We’ve been all over the place. I came here with my husband as soon as we got married. It was a new beginning for both of us. English is my first language actually because I was born and brought up and Kuwait and there everyone speaks in English. I have a younger brother who is ten years younger than me so he’s pretty much like my first baby.
My mother said that my baby brother is like your son and he’s going to be yours. You have to take care of him and protect him and pamper him that’s your first job to do and that’s lasted me my whole life.
What career did you dream of when you were younger and how does that align with what you are currently doing?
Surprisingly I am right where I wanted to be. I have always wanted to write, but in Indian culture, most parents want you to become an engineer or a doctor. They want you to get a proper job and work in the nine to five. I became a computer engineer and I worked in Kuwait for two and a half years in a retail company in the I.T. department. When I came here because of the visa issues I could not get a job. Then I had my babies and my husband and I wanted me to be at home to take care of the kids. I wanted to be there for the milestones. We were lucky to be able to choose to do that.
I recently I got into blogging and I’ve been blogging since the beginning. I’ve really gotten into it the past year. I’m so happy that you know I’m able to do what I have always wanted to do, which is write stories and connect to more and more people. I hope to reach someone out there who needs to feel that there is another person who is experiencing the same thing. Books and blogs are a way to get your message out to people. To make them feel like they are not alone, like there’s someone out there who was right there with you or who has been there who has gotten through it.
What year did you start blogging?
I started blogging in 2008. I was home alone and my husband used to go to work. At that time, there was blogger and BlogSpot. They were really trending. I made a lot of friends in the beginning. In 2007 – 2009, I was really active and then when we had my son then I got busy with him. Parenting, of course, takes precedence over everything else so I paused. I kept writing because I wanted to journal every day because I didn’t want to forget those moments. I realized that you know a lot of moms especially Indian moms are not writing about the things that we experience. Especially trying to get that right balance of culture and today’s times and parenting because it’s really tricky. Our kids have trouble speaking here and the language we speak and small things like the food we eat.
I got very positive feedback always. I wrote about the milestone stories like the first time he was born. The first time we found out whether we were having a boy or a girl – those things. Recently it’s been about all the small things like I recently wrote an article about the fashion battles with my son.
In the beginning, I used to wait to find someone who had the same problems like as me like breastfeeding or diaper problems. I was constantly on Facebook asking my friends who have experienced this and what is the way to get out of this and my kids are having gas and you know all those things.
My son is six year old and my daughter is 3 years old. My son is six going all sixteen and my daughter is three going on thirteen.
Aditi did not take any breastfeeding classes. She says that she regrets not taking classes as she thought that books would be enough. She thought breastfeeding was going to come naturally. My son was nine pounds and he was easy to hold and to latch on. It was my daughter who was tricky because she was really tiny. She was six and half pounds and I did not know what to do with her, how to hold her. I was constantly scared and I didn’t know those small things that come with breastfeeding – like if she is not feeding you end up engorged and how difficult that can be and how painful it can be. No one talks about it.
I think my nature helped me a lot in not feeling awkward. However, in the beginning I was just really overwhelmed by it all. The beginning days were like – What am I doing? How do I get him to stop crying? How do I relieve his gas? He constantly needed to be comforted. For a month I had my in-laws here and for another month I had my mom here. Other than that it was just me. That’s the different thing about her is that I didn’t have any help at all. I was up many nights all night. I was very surprised that my son would just feed all night and sleep all morning. This went on for 9-10 months. This sleeping and eating behavior makes it very difficult for moms who have to return to work.
Definitely I do agree with that. I’m so blessed that my husband supported me. He would never expect me to do anything because he knew that I was up all night. Since I was feeding my son, it was not like he could help. It was really a difficult time for both of us as a family trying to raise our son in the first year.
He helped with all the diaper changes. He never pressured me for cooking or cleaning or anything like that. He was the one who encouraged me. He would tell me to let it go. I’m kind of a control freak I need to do everything in the house. I need to clean and run the dishwasher and I need to do the laundry. But he was like let it go and focus on the baby and yourself. Her husband told her to learn to deal with the mess because she and the baby are what is most important right now.
He was pretty good overall about meals. We use to have a lot of quick fix meals and we use to eat out a lot. When my mother and mother in law were here, they use to cook very good meals. They took excellent care of me when they were here.
Tell me a little bit about breast feeding your daughter?
It was a different experience altogether. She fed more frequently, but she was a better sleep. I shifted to formula at seven months because I did not want to go through what I’ve been through with my son. I was breastfeeding him for 2.5 years and I had decided that I really cannot do that anymore. By the time she was born it was almost four and a half years that I had not slept. My pregnancies are really bad so I was like, No I cannot do this. But then we decided to go to India and I increased my breast feeding times and fed her through the whole trip. So that was another 2 months. Then I came back and. I put her on formula one feed. Then she weaned herself.In hindsight, I would have been strong. I would have moved her off the formula and breastfed her longer, but I just needed to get more sleep.
What did you enjoy most about breastfeeding your son?
I enjoyed everything about breastfeeding . I just loved holding him that close and connecting with him and just having the “me” time with him and my daughter. It’s just us in a bubble kind of a thing.
How did you feel about nursing in public?
I have always been very open about it. I would cover us and I never had anyone say anything to me. We talked about how easy and convenient it was to breastfeed. This is one of the reason that I went back to breastfeeding when I went to India. I knew that I would not be able to filter and boil the water so it would have been difficult.
Words of wisdom to other mothers:
I would tell them to focus on the food. Cook good food and put large amounts in refrigerator. Perhaps have someone cook for you. Aditi feels that eating on the outside is not nearly as helpful as cooking your own food. Aditi talked to us about using the spice Cumin to help reduce gas in mom and babies.
What did you miss about breastfeeding when you weaned your daughter?
I just mean less connecting with them. I loved being pregnant. The whole process is amazing. But I believe life is about growth and things keep changing. Change is constant, so you just need to keep changing and evolving and there are many phases of motherhood.
Anything funny happen in your breastfeeding life?
I haven’t really written about breastfeeding. I think this is the first time I’m really talking about it. In those days you don’t even think about writing about breastfeeding.
So I would love for you to share with my audience some of the things that you’re involved in now?
Right now I’m writing for my own blog which is called Silver Lining. I write about my culture and many times I write about stories that happen with me which give me insight into myself. I write about guides to help other moms who are going through stuff like – When your kid gets glasses, or how to protect them from predators. I have written for Huffington Post where I have had an amazing article which is titled: please stop telling me what to tell my kids you know. And then I write for Richmond mom’s blog which is a beautiful local publication which is which has a good team of local moms who talk about everything Richmond and motherhood. Now I’m going to start writing for Thrive Global. My new article will probably be coming in the beginning of next week. I’m excited about that. I volunteer for the Circle of Peace International which is an organization which helps students in Uganda in support of the school to help gain a better education. I’m a social media manager for them so I basically manage their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts for them. I try to help reach more and more people through whatever message the organization has. I started in May of last year.
I am excited about my article for the Huffington Post because I believe every child is different and every mother is different. It is wrong to tell someone just a blanket statement about how to take care of your kids. When I was younger my mom used to stare at me from across the room and I shivered because I knew that when I go home she is going to talk to me about what I did. I respect elders. These are things that she ingrained into me.
We had a conversation about what life is like with children in public and how people respond to mothers and what they tell mothers you should or should not do with your children. That is why I encourage journaling. I like to write on all the positive things that happen in your day so that a time when you’re feeling down about such things you can go back and see this is something that someone did for me.
adisingh – Twitter and Pinterest
Lori J. Isenstadt, IBCLC
Lori Jill Isenstadt, IBCLC is a huge breastfeeding supporter. She has spent much of her adult life working in the maternal health field. Once she became turned on to birth and became a childbirth educator, there was no stopping her love of working with families during their childbearing years. Lori became a Birth doula and a Postpartum doula and soon became a lactation consultant. She has been helping moms and babies with breastfeeding for over 25 years. Lori founded her private practice, All About Breastfeeding where she meets with moms one on one to help solve their breastfeeding challenges. She is an international speaker, book author and the host of the popular itunes podcast, All About Breastfeeding, the place where the girls hang out. You can reach Lori by email at: [email protected] or contact her via her website: allaboutbreastfeeding.biz/contact
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