Yes, I felt like a failed mom but not anymore, I am a happy mom now! #WorldPrematurityDay

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Warning: NICU share but a beautiful happy ending

Things were going smoothly, hospital visits were more frequent, thrice a week for scans and extra consultation. The clock kept ticking, one day after another. More growth, more kicks, more breathlessness, more discomfort. As it was my first pregnancy, I embraced the stretch marks. I celebrated my expanding stomach with my minions inside me kicking and playing. They kept reminding me they were there, healthy, safe and growing.

It was my 34.5th week of pregnancy when I went to the hospital for regular check up with my husband, mother, and mother-in-law. After examination, my doctor patted my shoulder, gave me a few tissues and broke the news that it was time for the twins to come out into this world. The blood flow had stopped and one of them was not gaining weight or growing inside. She told me they were very little and might have their share at NICU for a few days or even months. Honestly, I was not ready for a sudden childbirth, not because of the delivery phobia but for another reason.

I always wanted to stretch my pregnancy to a minimum one more week and complete 9 months (36 weeks). So that my kids would not come under the preemies’ category technically. But, this news broke my heart into pieces and instantly gave me the feeling of an already failed mom.

Since the time I had conceived, I and my husband took utmost care of mine and followed every instruction of my doctor. I turned a blind eye to sweets and said NO to my sweet cravings. I knew a few extra pounds could have increased the risk of preterm birth. We did every single thing to avoid delivering preterm babies but still, such words from my doctor pricked my body like sharp needles all over.

There were tears and tears flowing and I was feeling like a failure as a mother who was not able to do best for her kids. I wanted to ask my doctor to do some magic and wait for one more week but could not. However, such things are beyond control and could have happened with anyone, irrespective of singleton or twin pregnancy but at that time, it was me who was lying on the ultrasound bed.

I was wheeled to the operation theatre and my husband was asked to arrange blood for any emergency so he rushed to the blood bank after comforting me who was frozen and shivering at the same time. He spent some time alone with me before I was taken to the OT, the warmth of his hands and those magical words are still fresh in my mind. He was very positive about the situation and comforted me too. 

“The time has come, we are going to welcome our little footballers. Why are you tensed, we have waited for this moment from a long time now na, so cheer up and have faith. You had a smooth pregnancy without any complications, so nothing will be wrong now too”. These words from him felt like a cool breeze and took away all my anxiety and I felt better.

Soon after, I find myself in the OT surrounded by three sets of doctors and nurses in their green coats. One doctor for each of us. We lay there. Me with both of them inside me, kicking throughout marking their sound presence. I remember I was given an extra dose of anesthesia as the regular dose did not work for me. Later during the 30 minutes operation, I was continuously babbling to the doctor’s team and bouncing my silly questions on them, most of which were not answered. Of course! I could feel something moving inside my belly as if someone was shaking it vigorously.

Finally, I delivered a loudly crying Baby A and the feeling of being a mother was beyond expression. I was curious to know the gender of my child but the doctors asked me to be patient and wait till the second baby comes out. They pushed me and I delivered Baby B after 2 minutes but something was not right, the baby didn’t cry. The doctors tried and helped Baby B while I was scared to death knowing one of my babies was in danger. 

Those few minutes of wait seemed like an eternity and I was just praying and praying, chanting my mantras continuously for the safety of my kids. And then the wait was over when I heard the best music of my life, both my nightingales were singing together. The beautiful feeling of being complete it was. Yes, I was a mother.

After washing the babies, the doctors showed my little angels to me. “The first one is a girl”, as soon as I heard these words from his mouth, my happiness knew no bounds. I was elated to deliver a baby girl. “Both are girls”, as the doctors said this, showing both of them to me, I was on cloud 9. A tear rolled over my eyes and I thanked God for fulfilling my wish of having daughters and for a smooth delivery without any complications. I felt blessed.

(To all the mom of boys, just to clear the air, I don’t have anything against boys and even if I had delivered one, I would have been equally happy. Every kid is special irrespective of the gender, however, I and my husband had always dreamt of having a daughter too and when I gave birth to two of them, it was indeed like a dream come true and I felt the Almighty granted our wish).

While lying on the OT bed, I looked at them dearly. So so so tiny they were. And very beautiful. My angels. Then, I understood what “love at first sight” meant. I wished to take them in my arms and cuddle softly, see them closely, how they looked, the color of their eyes and hair. How much I wanted to thank them for choosing me as their mother.

I wanted to snuggle with them in my blanket and sleep, kiss them on their forehead, touch their red cheeks, smell them but I could not. Unlike what I was told during the counseling sessions during the pregnancy, I was not able to do any such thing as they were so small and needed care in the NICU. I nodded and asked them to do what was the need of the hour and the nurses took them to the NICU and I felt like a failure again.

Outside the OT, were waiting my parents, mother in law and the newborn Papa. He kissed me on my forehead and I could see the joy and happiness on his beaming face. “I have the most beautiful three princesses in my life”, he said in my ears and smilingly, I dozed off.

The first day of motherhood

The next morning, I remember going downstairs to the NICU and visiting my babies. That feeling was not at all heartwarming to see them lying in the incubators with so many cords hooked to their soft bodies. Again, the feeling of being a failure beset me. The pain of the stitches was nowhere close to the pain I had experienced seeing them in the NICU.

I wanted to take them home with me, nurse them, hug them, feel them, kiss them, smell them but I was not allowed. They were so small and unable to latch on the breasts so I pumped my breast milk for them so that they were not devoid of the precious colostrum. I could not breastfeed them for long and felt like a failure every time, a Mom boasted about her breastfeeding journey. Every time, I look at those less than 1.5 kg babies, I felt like a failed mom.

I was discharged on the second day of delivery and went home empty-handed, it was a strange feeling and I again felt like a failure. I had dreamt of welcoming my babies home with pompous and joy but back home, there was again just me, alone, lonely. We used to visit them twice a day for 2-4 hours when we used to give them Kangaroo mother care, skin to skin contact to bond with them.

The excitement of meeting them was so much that I never bothered about my stitched tummy and exertion of traveling so much. I felt very tired throughout the day traveling with a weak body and pumping without any rest. There was no time to heal my body but the joy of meeting them and feeling them close to me overpowered every pain, every stress. I just wanted to be with them.

Every night without them was like a punishment and we used to just call and check about their health. Honestly, I did not get a feeling of motherhood even after delivering as I was still living a life alone without the little ones. Earlier, I had them inside my tummy and at least I could feel their movement and kicks but after delivery, I was alone, totally. After spending 12 long nights in NICU, my fighter babies were shifted to the hospital room and I was allowed to stay with them there.

It was 5 days until I held them in my arms for the first time until then I was just kissing their photos. How beautiful they were. Even then, tiny and hooked up to so many machines. They had a nurse and a wall of machines each. Those monitors, beeping lights, alarms, machines were not at all pleasing to eyes and I felt I left them in some science fiction room.

It was Diwali and my daughters were in the NICU, away from me and the family. We went to meet them as usual and wished them. It was Children’s Day and still, my children were in the NICU and we wished them there. On our 7th Anniversary, my husband secretly bought a cake at the hospital and all of us celebrated together.

It was a special day as the next morning, we were taking our daughters home. They made many friends in the NICU, everyone’s favorite they were. All of them had different names for them. They were loved, they were cherished, they were cared for by everyone in the hospital. I felt truly blessed.


The next day, my husband and in-laws decorated the home very tastefully with balloons all over the room, lightings, and flowers. We were asked to maintain the utmost hygiene at home as in NICU, so all of us made sure to make a safe nest for our girls. We were welcomed home very warmly. That night I and my husband were very excited as it was ideally our first day of parenting.

In the next few days, life changed totally. Hectic days and sleepless nights, midnight two hourly feedings and rocking them to sleep again was tiresome and draining. Both of us were exhausted, sleep and rest deprived but we did not compromise on our girl’s health.

They were still tiny. We worried about everything – heating, under heating, overheating, giving them a bath, holding them the right way, feeding them and whatnot. But soon realized there was no right way, we just kept following our instinct and did what worked best for us.

Then they grew, and again lost a few kgs, then again grew and then some more. We shifted to another country when they were 10 months old, it was very tough managing without a support system. I prayed, prayed and prayed and somehow, we managed to survive and protect them when the cold nights seeped in.

Whenever they felt sick, doctors told us their immunity was low because of the preterm birth. And they might face difficulties in grasping and learning new things at school and I felt like a failure every time.

Gradually, we adopted a new lifestyle and set a routine for kids and ourselves. We celebrated their first birthday with a few friends and felt accomplished to survive one year of parenting. Time flew by. Our miniatures grew up quickly. Achieved many milestones one by one like walking, talking, expressing, eating and now going to the kindergarten.

And today here we are. They are three years. Healthy and bubbly. Smiling and giggling. Their tiny bodies and not that tiny anymore. I can see they are equally active and healthy,  growing, learning, embracing new challenges, like other kids their age. I am a happy and satisfied mother now and know I have done the best for my babies. My husband and I worked as a team and saw our kids growing.

Today, proudly I say I no longer, feel like a failure mother now. Instead, I feel so damn lucky to have them, as my babies. I don’t know why we were chosen to be their parents. But I will always be grateful to the Almighty, medical teams, family, friends for their unconditional love and support forever. And most of my brave little spirits.

My message to all the new mothers is trust yourself and never develop a feeling of a failure. Like me, you will also face many situations when you feel like a loser but never lose hope. Work on it. Trust me things change, situations get better, phases pass and we are left only the memories of the past. Why not treasure them as the best moments of our lives instead of gloomy ones which makes you sad.
What a great privilege parenting is.
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December 9, 2018 9:07 pm

I now know how much pain you both had undergone. Very emotional

Shilpa Bindlish
Shilpa Bindlish
December 29, 2018 3:31 pm

Being a Mother is too priceless to feel like failure. Every motherhood journey is equally adorable.

December 30, 2018 5:24 am

It’s very heart touching and after reading this I am emotional too..

December 30, 2018 6:50 pm

I almost had tears in my eyes reading this.
It’s really kind of you to share your personal experience with us.

jaideep khanduja
December 30, 2018 7:43 pm

motherhood is the best experience on this earth. nice post. liked it.

Zainab Raazi
Zainab Raazi
January 13, 2019 7:42 pm

It’s good to hear that your prayers were answered. Kids are loved by parents equally – boy or girl 🙂

Alpana Deo
January 13, 2019 7:45 pm

Truly heartfelt. Even though we all go thought the pregnancy and later motherhood journey but we have a different story and e different experience. How magical is that?
I can totally understand your situation when you and your husband shifted to Poland with two kids and there was no support system. Kudos to you two for completing three years of Parenthood.:-) pretty soon your dolls will grow up in beautiful young ladies. Time flies..


[…] They were so delicate that we were afraid of even holding them. They had their share at NICU and we welcomed them home 20 days after their birth. My little charmers were born fighters and gave me the courage to fight with them and for […]

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