In 2003 I look Air India flight from Mumbai to Delhi to meet my parents with my 5 month old son. It was our first mother-son flight together.
As a cautious mom, I started to adjust the seat belt to cover my baby too along with me. A few minutes later, the stewardess approached me and whispered, "Mam, you have to take the baby out of the belt. This is only to hold you to the seat, not the baby."
So obviously I asked her what do they have to protect the baby. She said, " Sorry mam', you have to hold the baby in your arms all the time, that is all. Even when the air pressure goes low, you need to breathe oxygen first and then place the mask on to your baby's mouth!"
"Really? There is nothing to hold my baby but you want me to protect myself and leave him unprotected?" I was very shocked. Then she said something that changed me and my attitude forever!
She said, "Mam, you must always take care of your own self first and only then you can take care of your loved ones."
This message is the most important message a new mom should be given by all relative and friends.
In India women are always thinking about everyone else in the family than themselves. It's in nature, true, but it should not be at the cost of their health and happiness.
When the children are just born to a few years, its definitely perfect to expect loads of work towards the new baby. Yet, moms continue to sacrifice their own food, looks, clothes and health. But the most important thing they ignore and are encouraged by others in the family is to never think about their dreams.
Infact, the moms are made to feel very good whenever they sacrifice anything for their children and family. But, is it not possible to do both?
Why should a mom sacrifice to be a good mom? Can she not be good mom and also give herself everything first?
I have seen my mom sacrificing for her husband and then children all the time! From the waking up first to sleeping last. From eating last to at times not eating the full meal. From sitting whole nights for all but having no one to keep awake when she was unwell. From being forced to sacrifice her jewlery to not allowed to wear her choice of clothes.
And its not just her. My mother in law continues to sacrifice for her daughter, raising her family even at this old age! She had become older than she deserves to be.
So moms, stop being suckers of those pep talks by men and family members who make you feel guilty all the time or make you feel proud when you sacrifice.
It's ok to eat first and then serve.
It's ok to sleep late.
It's ok to go out and spend on your self.
It's ok to dream and spend on anything that will take you a step closer to your dream.
Because, only a satisfied mom is a happy mom. Only when a mom is happy, her family members will be truly happy. Only when the family members are truly happy they will also genuinely grow together.
Watch this beautiful video Jada Pinkett Smith, a very strong woman talks about how she was sacrificing for her husband Will Smith and kids all the time. Till one day she realized how she was ignoring her own self.