Every month we would like to feature our #RealLifeMom. Whether you have been through a pregnancy or birthing ordeal, or have an interesting story to share, or even if you are just experiencing the normal motions of Motherhood, we want to hear from you!
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org and put #RealLifeMom in the subject line, and we will get back to you.
Everyone benefits from sharing their stories and hearing someone else's.
It's been a long wait, but we are finally back with our monthly features!
This month we are featuring this beautiful Mama, who shared her difficult story of loss, and overcoming fear.
Kim is a 29 year old Beauty Therapist, in Randpark Ridge, JHB. Her beautiful rainbow baby, Kelsey, is 6 months old, and we are so thrilled to share her story!
Tell us a little about yourself: "I am Kim Fisher. I am a first time mama to Kelsey. She is 6 months old. She is my gorgeous little rainbow baby. I am 29 years old and self employed Beauty Therapist at Craft Beauty based in Johannesburg. I’ve been married to my amazing hubby for 7 years and known him for 11 years. We also have Cody who is our adorable dapple daschund furbaby."
We got to chat to Kim about life as a Real Life Mom, and asked her a few questions.
It is really difficult to talk about miscarriage, and overcoming the feeling of loss. So many Moms really struggle through this in silence. Thank you for speaking out about your experience. We would love to hear more.
"We decided we were going to try start a family the beginning of 2019, luckily I was blessed that we didn’t have to wait long. It was about 2 months and I was pregnant. We were so excited. Unfortunately around 6 weeks I started spotting and we went for a scan and there was a mild heartbeat, so the doctor wasn’t too concerned as it was early to begin with. But 9 weeks came and I started heavy bleeding and I had a miscarriage and had to have a D&C the next day (was on Mother’s Day) I was beyond sad and you really go through an enormous amount of different emotions during this time. Doctor still said to us afterwards that I’m young and I mustn’t wait and let this hold us back, we must keep trying. 3 months later, we found out I was pregnant again and this time, we were both not as excited and were so nervous. We didn’t tell anyone and I said we’ll go to the doctor at 12 weeks and go from there (longest wait of my life) Well long story short, we had a successful pregnancy and now I have my rainbow baby girl. My heart is so full, but I will never forget our first little love that didn’t make it earthside."
Do you have any advice for pregnant moms?
"Take it easy and listen to your body. If you nauseous in the beginning (its considered a good sign for your pregnancy) It should pass if you lucky. Mine lasted until 15 weeks. Enjoy every little kick and hiccup ,cause you will miss it. Also as a first time mommy, do yourself a favour and go on an antenatal class. It prepares you for your birth, I was clueless and learnt so much. Hubby also learnt lots as in how to help your partner while she is in labour."
Having a newborn in these COVID Chaos times, is no easy feat and it seems like this virus won't be going anywhere anytime soon. What was this experience like for you personally?
"So my pregnancy was going great and then Covid threatened. On the 18th March, my hubby started getting sick, he went to the doctor and got booked off, come the Monday the 23rd March, he went back to the doctor as he still wasn’t feeling well and at that stage in South Africa people were only getting tested for Covid if you had travelled out of the country. (Which my hubby has never been out of South Africa) But any case they tested as the doctor was be cautious. Day 1 of Lockdown, the doctor called and said my hubby was Positive. My heart dropped. I had a million things went through my mind. Will I get it now with being pregnant? How will it affect my unborn child? What happens if I go into labour? My husband won’t be allowed to leave the house. This was the last thing I needed in my life. Luckily I never caught it or didn’t get symptoms. Hubby was okay and had to get retested to become a negative to go back to work. (By the way, even though this is a serious virus – he thinks it was cool to be in the top 400 for Covid in South Africa) The morning of the 8th April, I started with contractions and I told my hubby to phone the doctor and hear if he finally was negative or not. He was and got his results and off we went to the hospital. I made the silly mistake of saying yes to coming into contact with someone with Covid at the hospital and they didn’t want to let my hubby into the hospital. I was put into a room and basically had to requarantine again. I had to get tested for caution as I never got symptoms. (Came back negative, but a day late) After lots of phoning to the hospital board, my hubby was finally allowed to come be with me during labour, but unfortunately he wasn’t allowed to be there for the birth. I was trying for natural, but I didn’t dilate past 2cms and her head got stuck in the birth canal and she started stressing and so we had to have an emergency c-section. (I was in alot of pain and they never offered me an epidural) I was only to happy when I got taken through to have her. Was the best and sad day of my life. All I wanted was my hubby to be there with me and experience my daughter’s birth into the world and meet her. Damn you Covid! He finally saw her in the ward for an hour and he had to leave again. I only saw him again after 3 days when I got discharged from the hospital. I had one day and night staff assigned to me because they were careful as they thought I had Covid. That was hard, no loving and helpful nurse to show me how to breastfeed (was a quick thing and 2 seconds how to burp my baby), they also didn’t want to bath my baby on the 2nd day. My heart was sore and I just wanted to go home. I was a first time clueless mom and I just wanted someone to help me. But besides the hectic drama of a pandemic, we survived and I have a beautiful daughter. Side note: Covid loved my family, when Kelsey was 3 months old. My hubby got Covid for the second time. Again thank God, Kelsey and I were fine. That was stressful too. 2020 has been a year of a pandemic and everyone has to wear mask and sanitise their hands, but my blessing arrived this year and nothing will make it less magical. I definitely have a story to tell her one day when she is bigger."
Do you have any advice for new moms?
"Truly just enjoy every moment with your little one (even the bad ones haha). Before you look again they half a year and then it’s their 1st Birthday. Time really flies by. So just hold and love your baby, you not spoiling them."
What has been the most difficult thing you have had to overcome, in the journey of becoming a mom/being a mom?
"No one tells you that most babies are born and then suffer with cramps. From incorrect burping and their little digestive system slowly working in the real world. So invest in gripe water. This is a big help. Wish I had at the hospital as every night she screamed with cramps and the nurses just say she is hungry and pushed formula instead of helping you learn to ease the cramps. Bicycle wheels and tummy massage is a big help too. Also wish they would show you how to burp with ALL the different techniques. I youtubed Mike Marinus burping techniques – Lifesaver! Kelsey took ages to burp and hence the battle of cramps. Numerous nights me and hubby would sit helplessly with a crying baby. But it definitely got better once we got the hang of burping."
What was the best advice that YOU received?
People say don’t use a dummy, but we used a dummy. Our antenatal class taught us its proven to help reduce SIDS for the first 6 months. Interesting!
Get hubby to help change nappies and do bath, those are a mommy’s little free time to relax, shower or get something done you been meaning to the whole day. You need a break too from babs and your sanity is important."
What was the most useful product/item that you purchased or were gifted?
"My Hipporoo Carrier – we bought it when I was still pregnant at the Baby Expo. She had a valid point when the demo lady said look at the slings vs carriers, all the sling/ wraps babies were still being held up under the bums vs with the carriers they weren’t. So when you want a HANDS FREE carrier, this seems the best way to go if you need to do things around the house yet have your baby wearing down as your clingy baby wants love and cuddles. Also this particular carrier lasts up to age 3 comfortably. So you get a long journey out of it. Plus for me who has Scoliosis (curvature of the spine) this helps take the ease off of carrying a heavy baby."
5 MUST HAVE pregnancy/baby items/products:
- Preggy Pillow for Mom to be
- Baby Nest - we co-sleep and this helps make sure hubby stays on his side of the bed and not roll on her. Keeps her from rolling too.
- Rocker - so you can cook and shower hands free when your hubby has to work.
- Dummy – get once they are earth side. Different brands have different sizes and your baby like a specific brand. Helps soothe in times of need.
- Playmat with dangly toys – awesome for tummy time and learning to grasp. Keeps babs busy for awhile.
3 things that MUST go in your hospital bag:
- Mittens or Nail Scissors (my little one had long finger nails and I had neither packed and hence she had scratches all over her poor face)
- Take your own pillow. Especially if you having a C-Section and having a longer hospital stay.
- Take your own snacks and juice. You get hungry and thirsty as your milk is slowly coming in.
3 things that MUST go on your baby shower registry:
- Baby Products - we 6 months in and I haven’t had to buy any yet.
- Bibs – luckily her granny made her lots as she drooled from early on and also for those odd milk spit ups. I’d rather change bibs than her whole outfit.
- Swaddle Blankets – at first Kelsey hates swaddles yet she always woke herself up with her hands. So we went back to swaddling so she could sleep better . (EVEN BETTER ASK FOR THOSE SLEEP SACKS)
1 thing you feel that you absolutely DID NOT need:
Name something you wish you had bought or received. And why?
Silicone Breast Pump – I never had one but I wish I did. Heard so many stories of other mommies using them and was such a help as you breastfeed your baby from one breast. You could be using the pump to catch all the milk let down from the other breast. This helped keep your milk supply up and you’d have backup milk if you ever needed.
Do you have a parting thought for our other Real Life Mamas:
Everyone is going to have their own opinion on how you should raise your baby. Take what advice you want and chuck the rest. Listen to your own baby and just wing it. That's what we all really doing anyway, walking around in the dark. Oh and the first 6 weeks are the hardest, but I promise there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Quick Fire Challenge
(The below aims to normalize motherhood. We get so worked up over “doing the right thing” when in actual fact there is no right thing. You are doing a great job if your baby is fed, clean, dry and happy. You got this Mama!)
- Cloth Nappies or Disposables
- Natural Birth or C-Section
- Followed a strict schedule or went with the flow
Went with the flow
- Co-Sleep or Own Bed (from the beginning)
She slept in the pram next to the bed for the first 6 weeks, now we co-sleep
Full term (38 Weeks & 5 Days)
- Stay at Home Mom or Back to Work
Back to work.
- Nanny or Playschool/Creche
- Pureed Food or Baby Led Weaning
Disclaimer: This blog is made available by Yay Baby for general information purposes only. By using this blog you understand that these articles are in no way a substitute for actual medical or professional advice.
If you have any questions relating to this article, for Yay Baby or for Kim directly, feel free to post in the comments below!