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Parent Diary

"It was really tough to start with, but having a baby has brought me and my mom even closer."

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Managing life with my new baby, and my mom

Hong Kong


As soon as I got home from hospital, I felt lost. My life had changed completely and I wasn’t really ready for it. I didn’t know how to look after my baby and I was hardly sleeping. It was like an endless cycle of feeding, expressing milk and changing nappies.

My mom was there to help every day, but we soon started having arguments about how to do things. Like when the Maternal and Child Health Centre said not to use bath powder, but my mom kept using it. And when I wanted to use liquid soap to wash Chin Ching, but she wanted to use regular soap. Then she cooked me dried fish maw soup for supplement, but when I ate it I had trouble expressing. There was always something we disagreed about and our relationship got very tense. Then I was diagnosed with postpartum depression. I wasn’t able to control my own emotions, and sometimes I’d shout at her.

I didn’t like how I was feeling, so I figured out some ways to feel stronger. There is a traditional rule in Hong Kong that new mom should stay at home for a month and be looked after. But that wasn’t right for me. I decided instead to go walking for an hour each day, for relaxation, and then go home to take care of Chin Ching.

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But then I overheard a conversation between my mom and her friend, that she was feeling under pressure to take care of Chin Ching. She got quite stressed about it, and had got insomnia - she was very bitter, quite hard on me.

But despite this, she got up at 4am every day to take care of my baby and let me have more sleep. She prepared a postpartum nourishment diet and ginger water, and cleaned all the bottles and clothes. And one time, when Chin Ching got sick, my mom immediately went to clinic with her. Without her, I really could not have cared for my new baby.

As I started feeling better, I began to truly appreciate my family's support and care, and I started to adapt to my new life with my baby. This made the relationship between me and my mom more harmonious, and Chin Ching is at the heart of it all. She is always laughing, always delighting us. We all love watching her develop and grow, she brings us so much joy.

I finally realise that parents will love their children forever, and it’s a deep love that I only now understand. I know now that I will always love my family, and my baby Chin Ching!

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That’s the key to the whole thing - being pregnant and giving birth. You just need to get in tune with your body, trust your instincts.
Read Clare's story

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